Category Archives: Build a Better World

Concrete Modular Floating Islands Could Solve Poverty, Pollution, and Refugee Crises

There are currently about 100 million people who are living homeless because they had to flee a war zone, and there are just as many homeless people living in “peaceful” countries. A billion people live on less than $2.50 per day, and two more billion people live below the poverty line because they don’t have access to resources or opportunities.

Despite the world spending over $100 billion dollars on humanitarian aid and trillions more on public infrastructure, poverty is only getting worse, because traditional cities separate people from sources of jobs, food, water, utilities, entertainment, and education. The current housing system is designed to make real-estate more expensive, the more conveniently located it is, which means the poorer you are, the more expensive, dangerous, discouraging, unhealthy and opportunity-less your life will be.

If every country pitched in to pool together $50 trillion, they could solve extreme poverty and refugee crises by building a self-sustainable apartment complex/office building in the shape of a ring, 100 miles in diameter, where every resident will have immediate access to food, water, shelter, jobs, and transportation. As long as predatory capitalists don’t take over the city and raise prices and lower wages to extortion levels, every resident would be able to live fear-free for life.

A project of this size would face many hurdles. One of the biggest would be, where to build it? One solution to that problem is to build it on water. This approach would be more expensive, but the benefits might outweigh the cost.

It wouldn’t take much engineering to build a floating city. Instead of building a huge, floating base and then putting a city on top of it, build hollow modules that connect together. Then, a big wave wouldn’t knock any houses or businesses over, because everyone would be living and working “underground.” The surface area could be used to grow food and raise animals.

All you need to make a floating house is a boat hull. You could cast them out of concrete. Engineers have been building hollow concrete boats and caissons for years.

The technology could be easily adapted to mass producing floating houses. Or you could make the hulls out of fiberglass or steel. It might be more expensive, but it would cost less to build a modular fiberglass bobber house than to build a shack in Honolulu or New York City.

Even the sturdiest buoy city would be capsized by a mega wave on the open ocean eventually, but instead of building a monolithic island in international waters, you could connect a line of modular floating homes along the coast of a relatively protected body of water, like the Caspian Sea or the Great Lakes.

If this mega structure were built in the Mediterranean Ocean, you could create a walkable path from Africa to Europe. Refugees wouldn’t use it to invade Europe because they would already have ocean-front property and everything they need to raise a family. You could use that path as a new trade route, and the new most popular tourist destination in the world.

We wouldn’t need to fight over one location for the project. The governments of the world could build one hundred module factories around the world and gradually build a chain around every protected body of water. Life might be so idyllic, the majority of humans will flee the mainland and leave it to Mother Nature.

I believe the environmental benefit of a floating civilization would outweigh the risks. Since all the food, water and utilities would be created in-house, less packaging and transportation would be needed to get the necessities of life from their point of creation to consumption. The modules could be equipped with traps that filter pollution out of the water, and the hulls of the boats would provide new artificial reefs for fish to eat from.

This idea is crazy for being outside the norm, but not because it’s unfeasible. The richest 1,200 people in the world have over $50 trillion sitting in their bank accounts not doing anything. That’s more than enough money to house every refugee and homeless person in the world off-land. Even if governments footed the entire bill themselves, the money they’d save in humanitarian aid and social services would pay for itself quickly. Plus, it would create jobs, lower unemployment, food scarcity and real estate costs.

Sadly, that’s why the governments of the world would never conspire to build this. If governments cared about their people, they wouldn’t have invested their tax dollars on building unsustainable habitats to begin with. The rich need the poor to live in constant fear and danger because that gives them the leverage to exploit the helpless. Our cities are designed to create scarcity because it lowers workers’ and consumers’ bargaining power, which allows businesses to raise prices and lower wages. Extreme poverty and refugee crises exist because the global economy is designed to oppress and exploit the poor.

It’s almost impossible to get rich without gouging your customers and/or employees. So most rich people would be acting contrary to their past behavior if they donated their fortune to building a self-sustainable floating refugee camp, but there are a lot of philanthropists out there with more money than they know what to do with. Hopefully, some of them find the motive to give back to the world they’ve taken so much from.

If compassion and foresight won’t compel the rich to mass-produce floating city modules, greed should. The first person to streamline the process will become the Donald Trump of the seas. After Trump runs America into the ground, building a new nation at sea might be his only hope of redemption. Granted, being the greedy sociopathic narcissist that he is, his city would probably be full of slaves serving masters. However, if he can establish and improve floating island technology, it would be worth it as proof of concept. Then better people can copy his architecture and build the humanitarian communities we’ve been waiting for.

As a compromise, an island-loving billionaire like Mark Zuckerberg, could build a modular island factory, produce a string of islands, and after all the agriculture jobs are filled, train new residents as computer programmers, give them jobs that generate a profit, and keep a portion until the cost of construction is repaid, then give the employee ownership of their module.

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Sustainable Monasteries Could Solve Poverty, Pollution, And Refugee Crises

The most popular Youtube vlogger is Pewdiepie, a Swedish man-child who posts videos about playing video games and acting silly in his computer room. Pewdiepie currently posts about one blog each weak, which means, in the time between each of his posts, at least 1,900 civilians died horrible war-related deaths somewhere in the world, and that’s a very conservative estimate.

List of war-related deaths by country. At the top are Syria, South Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan and Nigeria

The civilians who survive these conflicts are only technically lucky. Over 22 million people are living in foreign countries right now because they’ve had to flee the apocalyptic death, destruction and destitution in their birth-land. That’s not counting the 65 million people who have fled their homes but haven’t left their country. This means there are about 100 million people who are homeless because they would die if they went home.

There are 65 million forcibly displace people worldwide including refugees, homeless, and stateless people

That number doesn’t count the 100 million people in the world who are just old-fashioned homeless, or the 1.3 billion people who have homes and jobs but are working themselves to death while starving in a shit-covered tin hut with no water, electricity or sanitation.

In conflict zones, it’s hard to get real numbers how many people are suffering, but we know that over 3 billion people live on under $2.50 per day. These statistics don’t highlight a few isolated travesties. Almost half the population of the world lives in extreme poverty, and there are still several billion more who make more than $2.50 per day and live below the poverty level.

Basically, if you have running water, air conditioning, heat, a bed, pornography and an education, you’re one of the most privileged people in the entire world. Drop to your knees and thank God if the worst problem in your life is that nobody loves you.

If you factor in all the money countries and nongovernment agencies spend on humanitarian aid each year, the cost easily eclipses $100 billion dollars each year. The world could afford to spend more money to fight poverty, but it spends over $2 trillion on the militaries which are displacing people. So taxpayers are spending more money on creating humanitarian crises than solving them.

We already spend trillions of dollars every year on infrastructure that is supposed to help people live functionally, but it hasn’t solved the problem because it addresses the problem in a roundabout way that creates more problems than it solves. All the roads, plumbing, and power lines haven’t saved the poor in Detroit or any other major city in the world.

This makes the problem seem unsolvable, but the solution is really very simple. All people need to be happy and healthy are food, clothing, shelter, water, electricity, jobs, transportation and access to markets. If you built a ring-shaped apartment complex with 100 million condos and offices, then dug a man-made river encircling the entire building and used that to water gardens and orchards, you could give the people living there agriculture jobs and a never-ending supply of food and water.

With those problems solved, some workers could specialize in other jobs, which they could reach by walking across the hallway in their apartment complex. Every business would be connected by one road that would never get congested. The bigger you make the diameter of the circular building, the more external markets it would have access to.

Basically, the complex would operate like a secular monastery the size of a major city. You could also think of it as a permanent, self-sustaining refugee camp. As long as the residents don’t have to pay rent, receive an equitable percentage of the profits their work produces, and aren’t overcharged for the goods and services the monastery sells, then everyone will always have everything they need, and nobody would live in destitution or fear thereof.

How would you pay for such a mega project, and who would build it?  It costs about $120 per square foot to build a traditional house, but if you built the refugee camp/monastery using earthbags, you could bring the construction cost down as low as $10 per square foot. Since all that dirt will need to be dug up anyway, you can use the dirt from digging the reservoir/water channel/moat around the complex.

It would take thousands, if not millions of people to build a structure the length of a small country, but earthbag construction is relatively simple. You could simply have the 100 million refugees do the work and then move into the home they built when they’re done. Then they would have a sense of ownership, pride and shared identity with their fellow coworkers/neighbors.

The richest 1,400 people in the world have $5.4 trillion dollars just sitting in their bank accounts, not doing anything. If each apartment unit in the earthbag megastructure is 500 square feet and costs $10 per square foot, you could build 1 billion, eighty-five million units with $5.4 trillion. This figure doesn’t take all the building costs into account, but to put this in perspective, it costs $1 billion per mile to dig an underground tunnel to reduce traffic congestion. You could build a mile of earthbag apartments with a road, gardens, utilities and an aqueduct for far less than $1 billion per mile, especially if you built it in the middle of Africa, Russia or China where property values are low.

We have the money to end extreme poverty in less than five years. We just need to stop spending it on constructing and repairing inefficient cities full of economic dead zones, and build a mega-home that fills all its residents’ basic needs.

The picture below has the aquifer in the center of the building instead of a moat around it, but it still illustrates my proposal.

1. Buy a field. 2. Build a circular sandbag monastery. 3. Build greenhouses. 4. Work and expand. 5. Replace suburbs and refugee camps with sustainable eco-ring monasteries

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Conservatives, Stop Talking About Overthrowing The Government

A sheriff in Lubbock Texas recently made a surprising comment “predicting” there would be a civil war in America if Obama were reelected. Not long after that a couple of American soldiers got caught plotting to assassinate President Obama. It didn’t surprise me at all that either of these events happened, and it worries me that I was so unsurprised.

The extreme conservative right has been beating the civil war drum since 2008, and what started out as a slow clap has finally worked itself up to a fevered pitch, and I blame conservative shock jocks and Fox News pundits almost entirely for this. They’ve been acting like fire and brimstone evangelical preachers this whole time. It’s just taken them this long to play enough hymns and preach enough sermons to get the conservative base worked up like a church revival.

I don’t know why they’re doing it, but I can see what the end result is. They’re poking a bear with a stick, and by “bear” I mean “millions of people who already own A LOT of guns and resent authority.” And by, “poking with a stick,” I mean, “feeding sensationalized disinformation to…” it was only a matter of time before a self-proclaimed Republican somewhere in America acted on what people had been thinking after watching Fox News.

The thing about that is, yeah, the American government is completely broken. That’s been front page news since we were born, but civil war won’t fix that. All it will do is make America turn its gargantuan war machine on itself and shoot itself in the foot. No group of Tea Part militia men could possibly defeat the U.S. military no matter how many shotguns and rifles they owned.

If a rogue group of battle-hardened veterans started attacking politicians, the American government would have to declare martial law on all of its citizens, which would needlessly inconvenience and infuriate an already stressed out, anxious, and fearful population. The worst consequence of even a small scale violent rebellion in the United States would be shutting down travel and business. That would stop people from working, getting paid, or buying goods. If roads were shut down or became unsafe to travel on, then consumer goods would stop reaching markets. Once grocery shelves ran dry, very few Americans living in suburbs or cities would have any way of getting more food except to fight their neighbors for it, and since there are so many guns in America, that’s a recipe for total collapse of civil order. Anything remotely resembling civil war in the United States is a lose/lose situation for everyone except America’s enemies. Anyone doing any saber-rattling is either completely detached from reality or wants America to lose.

The ironic thing about all of this is that there’s a perfectly sane, nonviolent solution to all of these problems built right into right-wing, conservative values. Conservatives, you want government out of your lives. You want to set the laws where you live. You don’t like handouts. You believe in hard work, fiscal responsibility, and fair compensation. And between the lot of you, you’ve also got a ton of money.

You could channel all of those strengths into butting heads with a bankrupt government that’s going through the death throes of an unsustainable empire while being bled dry by welfare queens and an unnecessarily huge and epically wasteful military… but you expect the American government to collapse if another Democrat gets elected anyway. So why not just let the government you hate so much die a natural death? Then you can be the first in line to pick up the pieces instead of being the first to drag yourself out of the rubble you went out of your way to create.

And let’s be honest here for a minute. If the Chick-Fil-A protest was any indicator of how prepared you are to put your money where your mouth is or endure hard times, then armed rebellion is not an option for you. You will fail, but if you know one way or another, America is heading towards its next great depression, then the most important thing you can be doing right now… is preparing for a great depression.

During Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign, he raised over $500 million from conservatives, and all of that money got flushed down the toilet when he lost. Imagine how big of a trailer park you could build with $500 million. You could build a trailer park the size of Pecos County, and since Donald Trump is on your side he could Trump it up. With or without trailer houses, you could build your own conservative Utopia surprisingly easily in this day and age. Then all the godless liberals can go to hell inconspicuously outside your walls while you wait for the rapture securely inside.

If you build your own cities then you’ll get to do things your way there. If you design your city to be sustainable then you won’t be dependent on your government. The fewer people are dependent on the government, the fewer people the government can depend on in return. You can assert and enjoy your independence by simply living independently, but that means moving off the grid and building new infrastructure.

You might not want to move off the grid though. You might feel like you paid for the grid with your tax dollars and therefore it’s owed to you. Well, as true as that may be, that grid is broken and unsustainable. It’s a cash sieve. It’s a white elephant. The smartest thing anyone can do is move out of the suburbs and into sustainably designed, self-sufficient communities. If everyone did that then it wouldn’t be a problem when the old system finally dies from eating its own tail. Then we could all just pick up the pieces without having to fight each other over scraps.

On a final note, I just have to ask, was Jesus a builder or a fighter? If you want the world to be a better place then build a better world. That option is still on the table. In fact, the more violent and destitute America becomes the more you’ll wish you had built a sustainable world when you had the chance. If you ever get to thinking that you can bomb your way to a better world, just ask any Iraqi how well that works.

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How To Build A Concrete Houseboat Or Island

In order to survive and thrive, people need food, water and shelter. In a predatory economy, these resources are as hard to secure as possible. We can solve these shortages by building floating sustainable houses, and the same technology could be used to build sustainable floating islands. Below is an illustration of one way to build concrete floating structures. You could also just use a large mold though. And yes, concrete can float.

Series of architectural designs showing the process of building a floating house. Basically, you take a hollow concrete box the size of a condo and put gardens, toilets, solar panels and furniture in/on it.

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Secular, Intellectual Monastery Designs

I’ve come to believe that if businesses treated their workers more like modern day monks in a for-profit secular monastery instead of disposable slaves then the economy would be more stable and (more importantly) the quality of life for human beings would be higher, which would, in turn, reduce all the social ailments that come along with an impoverished, discontented population.

Below are two architectural models I’ve designed that illustrate potential floor plans for secular monasteries as well as IKEA instructions for building walls and roofs. These models are not drawn to scale and are not final drafts. They also represent best-case (i.e. best funded) scenarios. Click on the pictures to enlarge them.

Brochure showing a 3-D design of a circular, sustainable monastery

Brochure showing the layout of a circular, sustainable monastery with a focus towards office work

Illustration of how to build sandbag walls. You stack sandbags.

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Dear Generation X, Please Build A Better World

“Generation X” refers to people born in America between 1965-1981. That time frame obviously encompasses more than one generation. For the purpose of this letter, I’m mainly referring to the youngest members of Generation X (born 1976-1981). 

I’m a member of Generation X, and I don’t have many good things to say about the Baby Boomer generation. Suffice it to say that I blame them for most of the world’s problems, but I don’t want to dwell on things I can’t change. What I can change is myself, and I feel like my generation can listen to reason. So I want to point out to my generation that anytime we find ourselves resenting our parents’ generation for abandoning us and throwing us under the bus, we should be vividly aware of what kind of big brothers and big sisters we’ve been to Generation Y and what kind of parents we’re being to Generation Z.

As it stands, I’d say that despite all the blood, sweat and tears we’ve poured into making old people rich and fighting their wars we’re actually failing pretty miserably as a generation.  We haven’t protected Gen Y’s freedoms. We sat by while privacy became a thing of the past. We didn’t do a diligent job of raising them. We sat by and let the television warp their minds into cartoons. Generation X hasn’t done much for generation Y other than to make better apps to amuse them into not caring how unfulfilling the rest of their existence is. I’d go as far as to say that Generation X is well on its way to becoming Baby Boomers 2.0.

When Gen Z takes over the world I don’t want them to resentfully dismiss Gen X as senile old roadblocks to a rational society. When my generation passes the baton I want to get a sincere handshake and a meaningful nod. More importantly, I  want to die knowing the world is headed in a better direction because of the role my generation played in history.

But we have to earn that by doing something other than fighting old people’s wars and making old people richer. The biggest way Gen X can fail is by carrying on the Baby Boomer’s legacy of screwing their customers and workers to get obscenely rich.  We can do better than that. We are better than that, and I will be very disappointed if Gen X becomes Baby Boomers 2.0.

What can Gen X do for Gen Y and Z that the Baby Boomers didn’t do for us? Well, if you don’t know what Gen y and Z want or need you could try asking them. Their answers shouldn’t surprise you. They’re bitching about the same things you’ve been bitching about your entire life: that life sucks because we have to follow archaic ideals that nobody actually believes in and that business is war, and war is hell. The corporate culture our elders based the world economy on makes life hell for workers. Even after you leave work there is a war going on between every business in existence to get as much of your money as possible, and this problem is ubiquitous  Every time you take out your wallet to put money in or take money out someone skims off the top. You get charged for not having enough money. You get charged for having too much money. You get fined for not telling the government how much money you have. You get bills in the mail telling you that you owe money for things you don’t even understand. In this dog-eat-dog, cutthroat world the cards are so stacked against the young and poor that they’re basically just set up for failure. Life is hard because our elders gave us a system that makes life as hard as possible so the rich can get as rich as possible.

There’s no big mystery about what young people want. They want what all young people have always wanted: to not get screwed and not have to live according to irrational, archaic, obsolete ideals. If we’re currently screwing the young, then we shouldn’t be asking what we can do to help young people. The answer is to stop screwing them. Stop overcharging them for all the basic necessities of life and stop paying them barely enough to survive for working as hard as they can for the majority of their waking hours. The rest of the time, just let them be themselves.

This really isn’t profound. People have been talking about this since before “We’re Not Gonna Take It” first aired on MTV. The story of our generation has always been leading to the point where we either build a better world or sell out to the old one. If the old guard won’t let their young change the old system then all that’s left to do is stop asking for permission to build a more humanitarian, rational, sustainable world and just build it.

How do you rebuild an entire world? I don’t know, but I know if you can build one city that works properly then you can copy that pattern. So until Gen X builds the city of the future my generation can’t say it’s done everything in its power to make the world a better place. Gen X owes the world a city.

If the Baby Boomers finish the job of driving the world to apocalypse we’re going to have to rebuild a better kind of city anyway to adapt to post-apocalyptic conditions. Some young people in this country are so scared of an apocalypse they’re willing to fight to prevent that, but violence only begets violence until the only thing left to do is rebuild. If we’ve got time and resources to fight then we’ve got time and resources to skip the fighting and just get straight onto the rebuilding. You might think the idea of building a city is downright stupid, but if you hear people whispering about doing stupider things to “solve” the world’s problems you might want to try to sell them on the idea of building anyway even if you don’t personally believe in it.

This raises the question, how do you set a project of that scale in motion? The answer to that question isn’t profound either. If you need inspiration just go back and watch some of the old 80’s coming of age movies you were raised on. What did our television heroes do when they had to have a showdown with the preps from the fraternity across the lake? They threw a party. Then everybody pitched in to complete a monumental task.

Generation X needs to have its Woodstock, except instead of getting muddy, doing drugs and dancing to pop bands from major record labels, we need to get all the right nerds together to figure out how to build a city right there on that field that doesn’t treat people like shit. If we can make one good city then we can rebuild broken ones later. If we can’t make at least one then we don’t really have a leg to stand on when we complain about the ones we’ve got.

One city isn’t too much to ask from a generation that wants to live in a city that reflects its own values anyway. Most of us hate our jobs. We’d all love to escape to a place where you don’t have to constantly agonize over bills and feel insecure about the future. So I don’t know why we haven’t built X City already.

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The World Sucks Because People Are Stupid. The Solution Is Free Online Education.

This is very simple. The world sucks because people suck, and people suck because they’re stupid. If you want to save the world, the most obvious solution is free education. Once all human knowledge is completely free and accessible anywhere, anytime, then everything else will follow.

Who should pay for it? You. Everyone. If you live in the United States of America, then most of your federal income tax goes to bombing brown people. That money should be spent on giving you and everyone else free education. Any politician who doesn’t make that their number one priority is the barrier between us and utopia, but politicians choose to continue to use your money to fund an unnecessary and destructive weapons industry.

Since your elected leaders won’t spend your tax dollars to give you free education, then Hollywood should. Second only to religion, Hollywood has been the largest producer of stupidity in all of human history. The majority of all media content produced in Hollywood is stupid. It’s designed to appeal to the lowest common intellectual denominator. It’s brain candy, and most people in first world countries binge on brain candy most of the time they’re not at work or school, and it makes them stupid.

Hollywood owes the world free education to atone for the stupidity it has created. Who is your favorite celebrity? That person is a millionaire and has played a role in making you, your friends, your enemies and countless strangers dumber. Your favorite celebrity should pay to build a free online school that offers video classes on every subject broken down by topic.

If Hollywood won’t do it then the richest person in the world should pay for it. You know how you become the richest person in the world? You sell stuff, and you pay your workers as little as possible to produce something everyone needs and that is as cheap as possible to reproduce, and you sell it for as high a price as you can. Then you avoid paying as many taxes as possible by exploiting tax havens and loopholes.

The richest person in the world is the world’s biggest legal thief. The richest person in the world has ripped off more people than anyone else in the world. The richest person in the world owes the world a free school that offers instruction in every subject. The richest person in the world can afford to create that school and never have to sacrifice any luxury or necessity in their personal life ever.

If the richest person in the world won’t give the world free education then the smartest people should. MIT has already created a small, free online school. That’s great, but it doesn’t include elementary school lessons on the alphabet or downloadable video clips on how to build and launch a spaceship (yet). If MIT doesn’t have the money to give the world that scope of free education then MENSA should pay for it. If MENSA is so smart then the need to fund a free school should be obvious to them.

If high IQ societies won’t fund a free school then the KKK and other hate groups should. If you feel that another group of people are a burden on society then give them a free online school. Once everyone in the world has equal access to education then we can all be fully trained workers with self-actualized minds, and we’ll all be productive members of society. Plus smart people statistically have fewer children. What more could a hater want? Education is the final solution.

If haters won’t save the world, then religious groups should. Religions claim to want to help people and to not be greedy. Great. Sell all your temples and ridiculous outfits to pay for school. Or be a hypocrite and stand by and watch the world burn knowing that you have the power to save it but chose not to. Yes, the issue really is that black and white.

If religion won’t give the world free school then the people should give it to themselves. People on social networks should collaborate and fund it.

Until then stupid people will continue to destroy the world until there’s nothing left.

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My 1-Point Plan On How To Save The World

There are rogue politicians and institutions who want to change the world for the better, but their voices are drowned out by countless other greedy and powerful politicians and institutions. Since there are so many problems of such great magnitude that need to be fixed, and there are so many people working so hard to keep them from being fixed from within the system, it’s extremely unlikely those problems can or will be fixed from within the system. Even if the system could be fixed, it would take years, possibly lifetimes for that to happen, and in the meantime, countless people will needlessly suffer and die.

The fastest, most effective way to make the fundamental changes the system needs is to build a new one from scratch. That solution might sound more difficult than fixing the old system, but I believe it’s not only realistic, but also relatively easy. You don’t even need to overthrow any existing government or ask permission to implement this solution. You just need to build a sustainable, organized village and expand it to support more and more people. This process can be started with less than one hundred thousand dollars.

One of the reasons why fixing the current system is borderline futile is because unsustainable cities are economically dependent on outside assistance to survive. Any Pacific islander can attest that dependence on outside assistance makes you the servant of those you’re dependent on. True freedom requires true independence, and that requires internal ecological and economic sustainability.

It doesn’t take much to build an economically sustainable village. All you need to get started is farmland, water and housing. If you construct your buildings with sand bags, you can make durable, well-insulated structures relatively inexpensively. Once you have a fully functioning farm that produces enough food to meet all your inhabitants’ dietary needs, then your farm will be able to support non-agricultural workers who can do anything from metallurgy to computer programming.

The farm should provide work space and living quarters to people who create vital products like clothing, household goods, medicine, and transportation. This will make the farm more sustainable and thus less dependent on outside assistance, which will make the hybrid office/farm village more independent. However, there’s no need to completely cut one’s self off from the rest of society. You still can and should trade with the outside world. The key is that a self-sufficient village doesn’t trade in order to survive. It trades in order to profit, and the more profitable it becomes, the more it can expand and build more farms and more work spaces. The more diverse types of businesses the farm supports, the more sustainable it will be.

A legally operating business that grows its own food, houses its workers on-site and produces a wide variety of goods and services will be able to provide a high quality of life for its members, and that quality of life won’t be threatened by boom and bust cycles of predatory capitalism… unless the farm exploits its work force by selling them goods and services at the highest price possible while paying them as little as possible.

This doesn’t mean the farm has to be Communist, Marxist, Leninist or Maoist though. Profits should be shared among workers. Common sense and common decency says that’s fair. Common sense and common decency also say the executives shouldn’t get to keep the majority of the company’s profits. One fair way to divide profits in this kind of environment is for the company to keep half the profits it produces. It reinvests that money into expanding the business and upgrading its living facilities. The workers don’t need to own their land they live on or the rooms they sleep in. As long as the company allows its members to live in its facilities for free and eat its food for free, then the workers can save their money for a rainy day or a retirement home somewhere else.

The rest of the company’s profits could be divided evenly between all the workers. That will upset some people who will find excuses why they should get paid more, but if everybody’s basic needs are already fulfilled, people will just be bickering about who gets paid more to buy more toys with. Personally, I believe every part in an engine is equally important to make a vehicle drive-able, and a business is like an engine. Everyone is equally important and deserves equal compensation. If you disagree with that philosophy, you can still compromise and pay your workers similar to the military, where everyone is basically paid the same, but workers are compensated for time in service, hazardous duty and other factors. You could also allocate percentages of profits to high earning departments and let the departments split their profits themselves. As long as profit sharing isn’t too unequal, everyone should be able to reasonably accommodated.

Once your city is sustainable, your workers basic needs are met, and your company is making a profit, you can expand the city indefinitely. If your city is built in the shape of a ring, you can connect every office by a single road, rail or walking path. If you build concentric rings as you expand, you can leave a certain percentage of the wilderness between the rings untouched as a nature preserve.

As long as you don’t go out of your way to control your workers with unreasonable, inhumane rules and regulations, the population will be free and happy. The rest of the world can be as brutal as an American prison, but the inhabitants of the sustainable eco-city won’t have to worry about unjust policies of world governments. The more sustainable eco-cities there are in the world, the less governments will be able to bully and exploit their citizens. Eventually those governments may simply become obsolete and crumble on their own, leaving behind fully functioning, sustainable, humane cities that can operate without excessive bureaucracies and laws.

If the entire city is effectively living in the same building with the same computer network, your entire population will be organized and accessible through the city’s intranet. This will allow the company to keep as detailed records on its employees as the military keeps on its members. This can be used for evil, but if the leaders of the city are meticulously screened, trained and controlled, then this system could be used for good. Your people could live like the crew of the Star Trek Enterprise. They would have a cradle-to-grave tracking method that maintains their medical, mental health, education and career details. With that tool, students could be steered towards their ideal career path. Employees could easily vote on policies or leaders. You could even use this information to create the world’s most efficient dating site. The potential use for good this system possesses is limitless.

Building a city is ambitious and expensive, but this whole process can be started with a small farm employing as few as twenty people. It can be expanded over time without subverting or challenging any existing power structure. It represents as social evolution, not a revolution. It doesn’t require any creepy ideologies or charismatic leaders. It’s just a smart way to do things.

These circular cities can be built from sand bags within the legal boundaries of existing nations, or they can be built on/in giant floating disks that can be launched and connected on the open ocean to create floating islands. We’ve had the technology to do this for ages, and it’s more feasible now than ever. If enough floating sustainable free island states are built, they can disgrace the old nations by offering a higher quality of life with less rules, less inequality, less stress and less violence. If everyone had a realistic chance at abandoning the country of their birth then politicians will have to do a better job at governing in order to keep tax payers in. If a country is too corrupt, inefficient and inhumane to retain enough tax payers, then their government will simply crumble without the need for a violent revolution or a charismatic revolutionary leader to rally behind.

That’s how I’d save the world if I had the money. I’d build a better system from the ground up logically and sustainably.

3-D architectural drawnings showing the stages of building and expanding circular, sustainable monasteries

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Fixing the Economy
Predatory Capitalism Creates Poverty

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