The Madagascar model
Nov 13th 2009
From The World in 2010 print edition
By John Parker
Conflicts over natural resources will grow
In the world’s earliest written legal code, dating from 1790BC, Hammurabi, the king of Babylon, laid down rules governing the maintenance of irrigation systems and the amount of water people could take from them. Two generations later, his grandson abandoned this rules-based approach and used the river Tigris as a weapon against rebels in Babylon.
The world is charting a similar course, away from rules governing scarce resources towards conflict over them.
Phi Beta Iota: Earth is a given. Anthropomorphism is a given. What is emerging as a given is Cultural Evolution toward Non-Zero (Win-Win) Human and Living Evolution. Up to this point, the industrial-era West has enjoyed profits from both looting the natural resources of the under-developed world, and from selling arms to the under-developed world. This has been possible because of data pathologies and information asymmetries, both of which are now in rapid decline. Below are just a few intelligent books that make the case of “getting a grip” on reality and on democracy and collective intelligence as the lever by which we achieve non-zero cultural evolution. Cultural Capital + BioCapital = CosmosCapital.