Peter Joseph, film-maker/producer of the Zeitgeist movies and founder of the Zeitgeist movement, introduces us in this ten minute talk entitled “The Big Question”, to what many see as the root of some of the biggest problems facing human society today.
Focusing on the “value war” that arises from the clash between our monetary-market economics and the natural physical and sociological order, that he names as Earth economics, he describes some of the clearly opposing principles that rule and define them. For example, he cites the clear differences between the needed obsolescence that drives market economics (be it intrinsic obsolescence or planned obsolescence) and the optimum design that should be followed in alignment with Earth economics; going on to explain why it is environmentally irresponsible to design products that will not last.
Following that same line, he points out the differences between consumption (a basic drive of market economics) and preservation (a goal of Earth economics). He then makes the case that, if we were living in a small island with limited resources we would not dare to live by a system that drives you to consume and waste as much as you possibly can. To cunningly extrapolate upon this idea, saying that we, as a human species, live on a small island called Earth that sits on a big cosmic sea, highlighting that Earth´s resources ARE finite.
During the rest of the talk he also mentions that growing problems like unemployment, social stratification, rising energy and food costs and most sociological problems are derived from these inherited values that drive our current society.
He then closes by asking the audience the big question: “What would you do?”. What would you do to raise awareness about these problems, about this war, and what would you do to promote changes to address this?
I guess what I would do is try to talk about it whenever I have the chance, in the hopes of making other people see the problem and make them start to think about possible solutions.