By 2020 our lower and middle income class citizins of the world have waken up and start to utilize social pressure in order to adress world problems effectively. Energy saving and producing zero emission energy has become a social competition and prevents global warming to escalate. http://www.ted.com/talks/alex_laskey_how_behavioral_science_can_lower_your_energy_bill.html
Furthermore people have realized that they can no longer allow multi-nationals to practice extreme tax evasion (see evidence), which directly causes ever more increasing tax pressure on them, the lower and middle classes, it causes extreme inequality and social & economic instability. More direct democracy will support in this, by the incorporation of the following system in governance:
(replace Steam by Europe or world and games by policies)
Finally effectively decoupling money from power and forcing the representatives of the people to actually make policies that support this majority of the people. For a better and sustainable world.
The following is as found in Scientific American, the book The Infinite Resource: The Power of Ideas on a Finite Planet by Ramez Naam and shared on www.kurzweilai.net:
Easy Way or Hard Way?
Ultimately, there are two paths forward for us, the easy way and the hard way.
In the easy way, we acknowledge the evidence that we are causing real harm to our planet, leaving it worse off for future generations, and flirting with the possibility of sudden and dramatic consequences. We retain our optimism, that we can both address these problems and be far richer in the future than we are today. We take our wildly successful economic system and we fix it so that it recognizes the value of our shared resources and encourages their protection, restoration, and careful, efficient, sustainable use. We invest in action to reduce the risk of even worse future disasters caused by our unwise past. Nothing is certain in life. But on that path, the most likely outcome is that we’ll solve the problems that plague us and grow progressively richer even as we reduce and eventually reverse our negative impact on the planet.
On this path, there’s no sign that economic growth needs to end. There’s no sign that we’re anywhere near the wealth limit of this planet. We have sufficient energy, sufficient water, and the capacity to grow sufficient food to provide 9 or 10 billion people with a level of affluence far beyond what even the richest in the world enjoy today.
The other path, the hard way, isn’t so pleasant. On that path, we continue to deny the damage we’re doing, the very real consequences, and the risk of much worse if we continue along this path. We keep on acting in the way we have, pumping carbon into the atmosphere, warming the planet, acidifying the oceans, hunting fish towards the brink of extinction, depleting the last fossil water buried under our lands. On that path, we’ll eventually come to realize that we’ve made a mistake. When the rivers and wells run dry, when we can no longer find the type of fish we used to eat, when the corals we used to admire have all bleached, when droughts and floods and storms wreck our cities and fields, then we’ll realize that we’ve taken the wrong path.
And then we’ll respond.
I’m an optimist. I believe in humanity’s ingenuity. Even on the path of the hard way, I think we’ll prevail. We’ll scramble and find solutions. Yet the cost will be far higher a decade or two from now than it would be if we started today. And the scars will run deeper, in species lost, in acidified seas, in forests chopped or burned down, in climate-created famines and pestilence, in wars and conflicts born of resource scarcity.
Or perhaps I’m wrong, and on that hard path we simply won’t respond in time, in the way that other cultures of the past failed to respond to the disasters that ultimately led to their collapse. It’s not a chance any of us should be eager to take.
Easy way or hard way. The choice is ours.
Creating awareness is key in every issue, most on the issue of climate change. The most important there is to know that we are close to a tipping point from where it causes a chain reaction. Less ice on the poles, means less reflection of heat and increasing acceleration in warming. Methane clasthrate crystals from the ocean floor will melt and methane is a 25-30 times more powerfull greenhouse gas then CO2. These are 2 examples that illustrate the chain reaction.
The Tipping Points
Climate change comes with an added risk — the changes we make to the planet may themselves accelerate warming. Consider the Arctic sea ice. Bright white ice absorbs only about 10% of the solar energy that strikes it, and reflects the rest back into space. But when Arctic sea ice melts, it exposes dark ocean waters beneath it. That dark water absorbs90% of the solar energy that strikes it. That contributes to the melt of the rest of the ice, as the waters near the Arctic warm more quickly as they’re absorbed. It’s also significant on a planetary scale. If the entire Arctic were ice-free throughout the whole of summer, the added heat captured would roughly equal the total amount of heat captured from all human CO2 emissions to date.
Let me say that again — if the Arctic were ice free throughout the sunniest months of summer (something that could happen within 20 years at the current pace), then even if we ended all human CO2 emissions, the planet would keep warming at a pace similar to the one that it’s on now. And of course, if we don’t end human CO2 emissions, the increasing energy absorption of a dark Arctic will accelerate the pace of warming.
Nor do the feedback loops stop there. As the Arctic melts, the permafrost in Siberia, Canada, and Alaska is melting with it. Below that permafrost is another trillion tons or so of carbon. As the permafrost melts, some of that carbon will emerge into the atmosphere. And a fraction of it will emerge in the form of methane, a gas that is 25-30 times more powerful in its greenhouse effect than CO2. How much warming that’s likely to contribute is still a topic of much debate, but at the upper end, it could also equal human emissions.
In short, we’re on the verge of setting off chain reactions that will keep the planet warming — and accelerate the pace — even after we cease our burning of fossil fuels.
Then it gets progressively harder and more costly in price and time to deal with the damage. Time to wake up, grow up and transcend the way we do things.
Something entirely different, but of the same magnitude and with the potential of becoming a unprecedented leverage when utilized. The tax evasion industry has recently been estimated for the first time to amount 21.000 to 32.000 billion dollars and hasn't been disproved.
We are grandmasters of chess, we need to become angels if we want to survive, let me defend that silly statement by the most stunning case of human arrogance, greed and stupidity, brought to light by James S. Henry, a former chief-consultancy for McKinsey. In his free time he calculated how much money there truly was in the off-shore (tax evasion) industry, a calculation neither the IMF nor the Worldbank were willing to make.
It became clear over time that the off-shore (tax evasion) industry was growing. But suprisingly enough nobody had made any estimates of the size of the growth of this industry. You would think that the IMF or the OESO economists would take interest in this. There is a lot of work on tax havens there. But nobody had ever quantified the size of the off-shore industry. Why? Well, because it is a very controversial subject.
The worldbank spend a lot of time measuring poverty and studied it endlessly, but at the same time they never studied inequality.
Henry's very safe estimations are the first of their kind and have not been disproved since they were made.
You estimate the size of a black hole, we came up with an estimation of 21.000 billion to 32.000 billion dollar in 2010. Which is an astonishing figure, nobody had ever done that.
The embarassing fact is that the rich countries in the world supposed to be the most responsible and so called developed countries are running this kind of shell game for the world. We estimated that from the 21 tot 32 trillion off-shore wealth from private individuals, about a third of that comes from the developing world.
The Netherlands appear to be an important key in reducing the tax loads for multinationals. We are the country with most of the tax agreements in the world and in combination with very low tax rates for intellectual property, it makes that 91 of the 100 largest companies in the world, flow their revenues through the Netherlands.
http://www.uitzendinggemist.nl/afleveringen/1333415 (from 6:47 in english, but I recommend watching all of it, maybe even make a translated version)
Now you might understand why I state we have to become methaforical angels. Being grandmasters of chess is not enough. Time to create awareness wherever you can and maybe even support the transhuman movement (as long as it stays righteous and justified).
Couple ecomics ever more tightly to our ecosystem. Decouple wealth from use of more physical resource and decouple money from power. Innovate governance, this forum is a good start.
In principle, it’s possible to grow wealth and well-being without using more of a physical resource. The two can be decoupled. Now we need to accelerate the pace of that decoupling.