6 Star and Beyond–the Essence of Fuller, the Future of Humanity
November 28, 2010
I did not truly begin to understand the breadth and depth of Buckminster Fuller’s thinking until I read this book as it deserves to be read, with full attention and detailed notes. This is one of those books that merits–and received from me, a Work Table of core concepts, definitions, obstacles, and solutions, posted online at Work Table [link live at Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog].
Although I heard Fuller speak personally at Muhlenberg College and distinctly remember him saying that a housing foundation could support the Queen Elizabeth ocean liner, it was not until this book that I understood in detail exactly what he meant: that we are wasting 90% of what we put into buildings. I have previously read and reviewed Critical Path as well as Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth, and it is my great privilege to know Medard Gabel, co-creator of the analog World Brain and sole creator of the new digital EarthGame (in concept pending funding).
CORE POINT: True wealth is cosmic energy and the creation of means to deliver to humanity unlimited free energy. Among many other things this creates the possibility of applying energy to create self-contained homes that are lightweight, fully self-contained in water and sewage, and totally green.
CORE CONCEPT: Capitalism and democracy have been perverted by money–those who manage money manage those who manage politics, and they both concentrate on optimizing the false God of money, an abstract concept hardly worth its paper representation, while ignoring–even subverting–the possibility of achieving infinite cosmic wealth on behalf of all of humanity.
CORE CONCEPT: Predatory capitalism on the one hand, and controlled socialism on the other, are both extremes and both fail to meet the needs as well as the possibilities of humanity. Fullerism is at root a non-zero equation.
PERSONAL POINT: This book answers the question I could not answer when a senior executive asked me “what do you do?” Now I know. I am a Comprehensive Global Architect whose objective is Prime Design: From Waste to Wealth (the title of my next book, inspired by this core reading from Buckminster Fuller). All my prior works, including my most recent, INTELLIGENCE for EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, & Sustainaabilty, have been a preamble to what I now recognize is my life’s work…I will try to earn another 25 years (I am 58, 58 + 25 is 83 — my family history suggests I will make it.). I am still looking for a country or global organization that wants to profit from doing this.
A few definitions up front:
QUOTE (142): WEALTH [is] the measurable degree of forwardly organized environmental control, in terms of quickly convertible energy, capacities and performance ratioed system capabilities, per capita, per diem.
Advertising destroyed public trust by pre-empting “industrial design” as code for airbrushing superficial changes to move products to market, rather than seeking integral improvements that could be shared with the consumer.
Design-improved livingry increases wealth.
Synergy is the delta between the sum of the parts and their anticipatable outcomes, and the actual outcome not anticipated.
Architects deal with the externalities of man.
“At rest” science and understanding (Newton’s paradigm) have been replaced by “constant change” (Einstein’s paradigm).
Bad housing breeds bad humanity and bad science–the time/energy costs and the materials costs are too high, housing is the socio-economic “runt” of all the professions.
Challenge is IRREDUCIBLE.
Design is innovative re-assembly that adds value.
Design-preventable includes illumination and prevention of corrupt exploitation of materials for inefficient or unjustifiable applications.
Energy mass, energy radiation, energy gravitation (E3) times Intellect (E3I)
Good design would reduce the per capita consumption of building materials from nine tons per person to one ton per person [this is in the developed world–these reductions would allow the extension of the lower tonnage home designs to nine times more people and more–with mass consumption come mass efficiencies.]
Industry is *supposed to be* the organization and application of collective knowledge and action that produces synergy (added value) over the sum of the parts in isolation.
Individual freedom is ESSENTIAL to the expansion of diversity needed to enable collectives to see the whole.
Total Thinking is the intelligent acquisition, ingestion, processing, and exploitation of all relevant information in order to produce efficiencies and effects beneficial to the mission objective.
Wealth is intellect plus energy combined to create capacity [with more free energy making more refined capacity possible].
Worldwide commonwealth credit is both needed and achievable to provide mass-produced sustainable housing for all. That in turn frees up the five billion poor to create “infinite wealth” by combining their intellect with infinite free energy to advance civilization.
OBSTACLES to advancing humanity include:
Advertising in place of genuine progress [should not be a tax-deductible expense in my own view]
“Credit” fueled the perpetuation and expansion of rotten housing at great cost.
Housing is the works of design, the worst of materials, and the worst of applied engineering
Housing as the sucking chest wound in economics [mortgages should not be tax-deductible, this both encourages waste of materials on housing, but also enables the growth of financial fraud]
Managers lack the over-all philosophical discernment to be effective at seeing the whole and building to the whole.
Politics is VERY wasteful, perpetuating inefficient industries.
Specializations are attracting the most gifted, and this leaves the less gifted dealing with integration if they think about it at all. [I always thought this was what business and public administration programs were supposed to do, but having graduated from such a program realize they do not.]
A HANDFUL OF QUOTES
p. 25 “My envisioned transcendental world design plan would be inherently nonpolitical, because it would be utterly independent of any need for authority beyond that to-self-by-self for initiation of its study and development.”
p. 95 In relation to the waste of heavy materials in housing, “…that in this war crisis it is technically treason to allow ourselves to be short sixty-five thousand freight cars weighing fifty tons of steel each, which shortage is equivalent to the number of cars required exclusively to transport the solid foundation and flooring materials unscientifically employed as frozen compression elements to structurally support the tiny weights of one-tenth-of-a-ton load of men who comprise the negligible working loads of housing, or to support machinery from below that could better be suspended, etc.”
p. 246 “The efficiency of the industrial equation is directly proportional to the numbers consuming.” [In other words, capitalism focused on the needs of the one billion rich is long overdue for a redirection of focus to the needs of the five billion poor.]
p.247 “Serve one hundred per cent will involve a world design revolution, not just design of end-products, but of the comprehensive industrial network equations including world-around-livingry-service systems, at regenerative occupancy rentals, mutually installed in anticipatory facilitation of total world enjoyment of individually respected total man.”
p. 249 “Only the free-wheeling artist-explorer, non-academic, scientist-philosopher, mechanic, economist-poet, who has never waited for patron-starting and accrediting of his coordinate capabilities holds the prime initiative today.”
Energy investments will define the future.
Need a world housing industry. We do NOT need water, sewer, and electrical infrastructure. Distributed housing and small cities connected by high-speed rail should be the norm.
Harvesting of scrap is the next needed Manhattan Project/Marshall Plan.
Extract from Conclusion in the Above: I have observed the World Game as a student-participant, and wish it well. I have also observed Bob Pickus’s work, as a student-participant in Turn Toward Peace, and wish him well. There are still other alternatives, but whichever road leads us faster into a world without war, what I gain most from Pickus and Fuller is their sense of the Big Picture. No one else can match their indefatigable and comprehensive efforts to see the problem whole, and to steer the world’s energy into a grand design of peace.
Within those, the two below are the most interesting. The second was used in a discussion between Buckminster Fuller and the Russian leadership, to show how a global electrical grid could be achieved that would eradicate the current 50% loss from source to end-user.
“INTEGRITY: A POSITIVE MODEL THAT INCORPORATES THE NORMATIVE PHENOMENA OF MORALITY, ETHICS, AND LEGALITY”
Academic Paper in Progress
Werner Erhard and Professor Michael C. Jensen discuss their positive model of integrity that links integrity and personal and corporate performance. They address integrity in a developing academic paper, whose primary purpose is to present a positive model of integrity that provides a powerful access to increased performance for individuals, groups, organizations, and societies.
The creation of this model reveals a causal link between integrity and increased performance. Through the work of clarifying and defining what integrity is and it’s causal link to performance, this model provides access to increased performance for private individuals, executives, economists, philosophers, policy makers, leaders, legal and government authorities.
Phi Beta Iota: In late 2009 we pointed to a very important paper in Reference: Integrity–Without it Nothing Works. That first posting focused on the US member of the two-person team doing all of this original work. Now we focus on Werner Erhard, whose home page offers a rich combination of background plus a diversity of supporting sources.
Below are a handful of links, we strongly recommend deep attention to every aspect of the web site. Integrity is a theme that runs through history and the work of, among others, Will Durant and Buckminster Fuller and Robert Steele. These two authors, Mssrs. Erhard and Jensen, better than anyone else in modern time, have articulated the pragmatic paradigmatic role that integrity plays in doing what Russell Ackoff calls “doing the right things” and Kent Myers calls “reflexive practice.
This article by two young scholars is a very good one, very provocative and persuasive. It lacks reference to other giants that have gone before, but stands as the best effort we have seen since WIRED did its own cover story on alternative and renewable energies in 2001, coming out the very week that Dick Cheney was meeting secretly with Enron and Exxon to discuss the elective war on Iraq. Also available from the lead author:
Phi Beta Iota: We are often irritated by the young who represent their triumphant ideas as if arrived at by immaculate conception. No discussion of this topic is credible without reference to, at a minimum, Buckminster Fuller, Herman Daly, and Paul Hawken, among many others. Below are just three books among the many we have received pertaining to sustainable design, zero waste, and green to gold, and the most recent book to put all of this into proper perspective.
1) Chuck Spinney on how our partisan “leaders” are disconnected from reality and leading us over a cliff, with reference to John Boyd.
2. An extract and link to the always brilliant CounterPunch where David Michael Green discusses the core issue: Can America be salvaged?
3. A Phi Beta Iota editorial commentary on Thomas Kuhn (The Structure of Scientific Revolutions), Robert Steele (Paradigms of Failure, Data Pathologies), and Howard Zinn (A Power Governments Cannot Repress).
CHUCK SPINNEY: The article in Counterpunch by David Michael Green, “Can America be Salvaged?” is an brilliant expository argument describing what are in effect the destructive outcomes of self-referencing/incestuously amplifying OODA loops that are becoming ever more disconnected from reality.
The Obama Administration means well, no question about it. They simply do not know what they do not know, and no one within the US Intelligence Community appears capable of speaking truth to power.
The truth that needs to be spoken is that Washington lacks both integrity and intelligence (as in thoughtful holistic decision-making). Washington lacks a strategic analytic model, it lacks a commitment to eradicating the ten high-level threats to humanity (terrorism is ninth, a traffic accident, nothing more), and it lacks a process for harmonizing budgets and behavior across twelve core policy domains as illustrated below.
Medard Gabel was for many years #2 to Buckminister Fuller, and a co-creator of the analog World Game. As a founding director of Earth Intelligence Network, a 501c3 Public Charity, he created–and retains ownership of–the EarthGame.
Below are four specific modules that can be used NOW to excite both students and executives about the importance of sustainable design, strategic analysis, and the unity of knowledge–what E. O. Wilson calls Consilience.
Advise the President of the United States in the Presidential Advisor Game learn more …
Save the World
from climate disaster in the
Climate Change Game learn more …
Phi Beta Iota strongly recommends anything and everything that Medard Gabel has created and offers.Give him a call to see how one of his programs will fit into your program today at 610.566.0156!
NOTE: We *will* create the World Brain and the EarthGame, it is only a matter of when, not if. Get started now by engaging Medard Gabel to show you how you can make sense, make strategy, and advance the common good while achieving your own worthy goals.
WASHINGTON – Melting ice caps. Drought. Spreading disease. US defense planners view global climate change as a national security threat because it could create millions of new refugees and intensify conflicts over resources.
. . . . . . .
A new debate is unfolding over whether linking climate change too closely with security planning will create a self-fulfilling prophecy, running the risk that the United States will rely too heavily on its armed forces to deal with global problems.
Robert David STEELE Vivas has committed himself to being intelligence officer to the public, and to the five billion poor in particular, for the balance of his life.
Below are some definitions that matter, as of 1 August 2009 [this is a work in progress, will try to complete it soon, and then future definitions will be separate postings]
BRAIN: Only a living creature can have a brain, an organic or biological device that has over billions of years evolved to its present state. The following quotation from James Bamford is instructive; it is the final sentence of his book, BODY OF SECRETS: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Intelligence Agency (page 613)
COLLECTIVE INTELLIGENCE (CI): Collective Intelligence overcomes groupthink and individual cognitive biases by leveraging a process of consensus decision-making that respects–even demands–diversity of inputs and perspetives. At its best it can be a society of the human mind, achieving conscious evolution as a species. CI is a return to the precepts ofthe Founding Fathers, and in particular Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. The industrial era, characterized by Lionel Tiger as “The Manufacture of Evil,” separated the public from both information and elite decision-making, while still taking public money. Bureaucracy fostered secrecy, and secrecy fostered pathology. Collective intelligence restores the power of the people over their commonwealth, and neutralizes the power of vested interests that manipulate information to concentrate wealth. NOTE: a fuller definition that draws on Robert Steele’s many publications can be found at WordIQ, which tends to be more balanced than Wikipedia. Colloquial terms, each a book title, include Smart Mobs, Groundswell, Here Comes Everybody, Army of Davids, Wikinomics, and Wealth of Networks.
DATA: The raw direct human observation or articulation, raw image, raw signal, raw signature, or in machine terms, the lowest possible element of information that can be isolated in and of itself with its own provenance.
DATA MINING: The direct exploitation of information already in-hand, or procured for a specific investigation i.e. generally internally-generated and oriented. Often mis-represented as Business Intelligence. See also Knowledge Management. At its best, Data Mining is a huge fraud buster, detecting patterns of import-export tax avoidance, money laundering, and insurance fraud.
DECISION-SUPPORT: The conversion of information, which costs money, into intelligence, which makes money–or achieves other goals, public, and private, of specific interest to a specific individual or body making a decision of import. See also Intelligence. An alternative for those organizations such as the United Nations that have long been abused by the confusion of secret sources & methods with the world “Intelligence.”
EARTH INTELLIGENCE (EARTHINT): Earth Intelligence, the subject of a new book (the second book to be published by the Earth Intelligence Network, the first was on Collective Intelligence) is defined by its outcome, the creation of a prosperous world at peace. We have adopted Buckminster Fuller’s objectives as our own.
The pure integral consciiousness of Buckminster Fuller is finally coming into its own as sustainable design, natural capitalism, zero waste, and many other ideas that reflect INTEGRITY as the essence of life, all converge. Buckminster Fuller is to re-engineering the earth as Will Durant is to re-thinking philosophy.
Although I heard Fuller speak at Muhlenberg College in 1973 or so, I had not read his books and for me Critical Path was a very healthy reminder that long before many of the current authors, Buckminster Fuller had a grip on the basics:
1) Economic theory of scarcity and secrecy is evil, benefitting the few at the expense of the many
2) Earth is NOT a zero sum Darwinian game for humans, in fact it is the human role–the human mind’s role–to “synergize” Earth into a win-win for all.
3) Money is not wealth only an artifact that is representative of empty bank vaults and gross misrepresentation by the alleged wealthy. Only time-energy accounting and “true cost” of goods and services should be used.
4) Obstacles to displacing rule by scarcity and secrecy are the public ignorance of natural science and the collaboration among governments, corporations and large organizations such as religions and labor unions that “divide and keep conquered.”
5) Computers–and Fuller was clearly envisioning today’s computers, not those of his time–if properly fed all of the relevant data can alter perceptions on a just enough, just in time basis. This coincides with my own view that we can and must educate the five billion poor one cell call at a time, but it also favors the ideas gaining currency of connecting the one billion rich (80% of whom do not give to charity) directly with the needs of the five billion poor at the household level of need.
I am hugely impressed with both specific actionable visions and specific actionable facts:
1) Now possible to create a global electrical grid that runs across Alaska into Canada and China, and eliminate the electrical shortfalls in both those countries and in Canada and the US West Coast.
2) In time-energy “true cost” accounting, every gallon of oil that we use cost $1 million (in 1981 dollars, which is to say, around $10 after the current Administration finished with its massive devaluation plans).
3) There are two critical paths that are not understood by the public or those who profess to represent the public: path one is those natural trends that proceed with or without human errors, omissions, and interventions; path two is the human path both local and as a global aggregate.
4) Considered in time-energy terms, both our industrial-era schools and our industrial-era office buildings are lunacy. He provides a fascinating discussion of inland versus island dwellers, concludes that most urban office buildings should be converted into mixed dwelling-telecommuting centers and is generally brutal about our national policies being 50 years out of date (in 1981–that would make them 80 years out of date today, and I agree).
5) He provides a BRUTAL discussion of banking and government bail-outs of banking as well as mortgage fraud that led to the Great Depression, how banks dispossessed the farmers not realizing that the land was over-valued AND that no one else wanted to do the hard work of farming, and I am generally thunder-struck by how history has repeated itself.
I am especially impressed by his “cosmic costing” which does not allow for hoarding (he joins others in cursing money as both a hoardable good and one that can draw interest beyond reason).
A goodly portion of the book covers the art of doing more with less; doing it faster; and ultimately benefitting increasing numbers of humans with the same technologies.
His discussion of “precession” revolves around not competing with anyone else, instead attending to the unattended. He has a gift for “comprehensive consideration” that we could all draw upon for inspiration.
I am completely absorbed by this book, which includes in the final third:
1) The challenge is to educate all humans, and to teach humans to learn in the shortest possible time–my kids have two answers: cell phones and video games. This is a no-brainer.
2) I offer some quotes below but am totally engaged with his discussion of the Geoscope, what some today might call an Earth Monitoring System, and his view that we can create a 200 foot version of the Earth where one inch equals three miles, and using computers, be able to illuminate for any human–however poorly educated or ideologically stunted–what actually IS the reality.
3) He spends time describing the World Game and cites two books by Medard Gabel that are no longer available via Amazon (but see the EarthGame(TM) technical description offered by Earth Intelligence Network), and describes it as a problem-solving choice-making educational game.
On page 287 I am stunned by his anticipation of the “de-sovereignization” of the United States of America, coincident with the bankruptcy of the US Nation at the hands of its out of control federal government.
On the architectural side I am fascinated by his discussion of flat slab building as the worst possible time-energy construction, and his discussion of the alternatives that he created, including floating cities that I now regard as inevitable.
The book contains an unexpected gem, a compendium created by Fuller based on US contractor experiences in Russia that was delivered to Brazil. It is still valid and it is a model for the kind of clear thinking that government engineers should be able to, but cannot do. [With credit to Chuck Spinney, I have learned that “government specification cost plus engineering” has fried the brains of multiple generations of engineers who are unable to computer biomimicry, cradle to cradle, green to gold, etc. We must wait for our children to rule the world, they are the “digital natives” who will not tolerate rankism, secrecy, scarcity, or lies.
A few quotes are in the comment as I must respect Amazon’s 1000 word limit.
xxv: “It is sa matter of converting the high technology from weaponry to livingry.”
xxxvi: “The race is between a better-informed, hopefully inspired young world versus a running-scared, misinformed brain-conditioned, older world.”
xxxviii: “The political and economic systems and the political and economic leaders of humanity are not in the final examination; it is the integrity of each individual human that is in the final examination. On personal integrity hangs humanity’s fate.”
118-119 “The USA is not run by its would-be “democratic” governance…..Nothing could be more pathetic than the role thats has to be played by the President of the United States, whose power is approximately zero.”
169 “The objective of the game would be to explore ways to make it possible for anybody and everybody in the human family to enjoy the total Earth without any human interfering with any other human and without any human gaining advantage at the expense of another.”
See also page 199, page 202, 208, 221, 225, 287, 346
Simple awesome. If you want your children and grand-children to have an intellectual advantage, nurture their thinking on sustainable development and read in yourself on Buckminster Fuller.
I myself have been terribly guilty of rankism, primarily in the customer service arena, where mediocre service has roused my fury and I have been less than stellar at realizing that it’s not the person, it’s the system, and so many others are responsible for the mediocrity that I am a fool for taking it out on the one person I can see.
Where this book renders a very useful service is in the naming of the anti-thesis to dignity, i.e. rankism. This is not a book about dignity, but rather about rankism in all its forms and how that robs all of us of dignity, but especially those least able to handle the inequalities including (new term for me) micro-inequalities–the subtle pecking to death by ducks, e.g. being interrupted constantly, not noticed, etc.
I have been focusing on integrity recently, on truth, and I confess that I have not given enough thought to the tact side of the equation. This book is persuasive in saying that truth by itself is not enough, truth must be accompanied by tact, or as I have it in my notes, “Integrity plus dignity = informed democracy.”
There are 24 sidebars, each a little gem, the key points are summarized at the end of each chapter, and I believe this book finally meets the need for a Citizen 101 Guide.
Among my fly-leaf notes:
1. Lack of dignity is a driver toward violence and unreason. This joins a mantra from elsewhere, that anger and violence generally stem from a feeling of being treated unfairly.
2. Dignity should be the first human right.
3. Costs of not providing dignity are enormous. The following is quoted from pages 3-4:
“The consequences of violating others’ dignity are evident in widespread social problems such as high rates of school dropout, prison incarceration, violent crime, depression, suicide, divorce, and despair; in the business world in reduced creativity, lower productivity, or disloyalty to the organization. Even health and longevity areaffected.”
While the above is grossly simplistic, it is important and merits note.
4. Rnakism is the “root” “ism” e.g. for sexism, racism, etc, the one that fosters all other isms by artificially elevating one person over another.
5. Dignitarian intervention breaks the rankism cycle. John Steiner intervened with me one time in Denver, and I have to say that without having read this book, I did not quite see his point. Those intervening should anticipate not being understood the first several times.
6. HUMILITY in leaders signifies an open mind willing to listen to everybody. I have just finished giving up on the leaders of the U.S. intelligence community as they live in “closed circles” and are like Henry Kissinger when David Elsberg counseled him, becoming like morons in that they rely too much on narrow secrets and allow their “closed circle” to shut out all those who actually have ground truth real world experience. See my review of Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers
7. The vignettes are not to be skipped. As impatient a reader as I am, I realized after a few of them that they comprise in the aggregate a 360 degree repetition of the basic lesson in many more naunced ways.
8. Secrecy and silencing are part of the Borg as I have tekn to calling it, the “establishment” in which neither Bush nor Obama really controls anything, the “system” goes on with its Wall Street ubber alles and two parties doing the bidding of special interests. Snobbery (think Council on Foreign Relations), bullying (think clearances removed from whistle-blowers) and blackballing (think CIA never hiring anyone critical of their nonsense) are all part of the Borg.
9. The book ends with comments on truth and reconciliation, of which I am a huge fan, believing the USA needs at least two–one for what has been done to We the People including our Native Americans and people of color, another for what has been done around the world “in our name” and at our expenses. Appreciative inquiry is discussed, as well as shared governances and shared evaluation.
Bottom line: this may well be the one book and the one idea that We the People cannot do without.
I was actually expecting an Operating Manual. Although what I ended up with is a 136-page double-spaced “overview” by Buckminster Fuller, a sort of “history and future of the Earth in 5,000 words or less, bracketed by a *wonderful* introduction by grandchild Jamie Snyder, an index, a two-page resource guides, and some photos and illustrations including the Fuller Projections of the Earth.
First, the “core quote” that I can never seem to find when I need it:
OUR MISSION IS “To make the world work for 100% of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological offense or the disadvantage of anyone.” Inside front cover.
The introduction is a treat–I note “impressive” and appreciate the many insights that could only come from a grandchild of and lifelong apprentice to Buckminster Fuller.
Highlights for me:
Founder of Design Science, a company by that name is now led by Medard Gabel who served as his #2 for so long. I just attended one of their summer laboratories and was blown away by the creativity and insights. It is a life-changing experience for those with a passion for Earth.
He imagined an inventory of global data. I am just now coming into contact with all of this great man’s ideas, but my third book, Information Operations: All Information, All Languages, All the Time, also online at the Strategic Studies Institute in very short monograph form, is totally in harmony with this man’s vision for a global inventory of global data.
“Great Pirates” that mastered the oceans as the means of linking far-flung lands with diversity of offerings was the beginning of global commerce and also the beginning of the separation between globalists who knew the whole, and specialists whom Buckminster Fuller scathingly describes as an advanced form of slave.
He was frustrated with the phrases “sunrise” and sunset” as they are inaccurate, and finally settled for “sunsight” and “suneclipse” to more properly describe the fact that it is the Earth that is moving around the sun, not the other way around.
In 1927 he concluded that it is possible for forecast with some accuracy 25 years in advance, and I find this remarkably consist with Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s view that it takes 25 years to move the beast–see for instance Miles to Go: A Personal History of Social Policy.
He has an excellent discussion of the failure of politics and the ignorance of kings and courtiers, noting that our core problem is that everyone over-estimates the cost of doing good and under-estimates the cost of doing bad, i.e. we will fund war but not peace.
He described how World War I killed off the Great Pirates and introduces a competition among scientists empowered by war, politicians, and religions. He says the Great Pirates, accustomed to the physical challenges, could not comprehend the electromagnetic spectrum.
There is a fascinating discussion of two disconnected scholars, one studying the extinction of human groups, the other the extinction of animal species, and when someone brings them together, they discover that precisely the same cause applied to both: over-specialization and a loss of diversity.
Synergy is the uniqueness of the whole, unpredictable from the sum of the parts or any part individually.
On page 87 he forecasts in 1969 when this book was first published, both the Bush and the Obama Administration’s ease in finding trillions for war and the economic crisis, while refusing to recognize that we must address the needs of the “have nots” or be in eternal war. I quote:
“The adequately macro-comprehensive and micro-incisive solutions to any and all problems never cost too much.”
I agree. I drove to Des Moines and got a memo under Obama’s hotel door recommending that he open up to all those not represented by the two party crime family, and also providing him with the strategic analytic model developed by the Earth Intelligence Network. Obviously he did not attend, and today he is a pale reflection of Bush. See the images I have loaded, and Obama: The Postmodern Coup – Making of a Manchurian Candidate.
Early on he identified “information pollution” as co-equal to physical pollution, I am totally taken with this phrase (see my own illustration of “data pathologies” in the image above). I recognize that Buckminster Fuller was about feedback loops and the integrity of all the feedback loops, and this is one explanation for why US Presidents fail: they live in “closed circles” and are more or less “captive” and held hostage by their party and their advisor who fear and block all iconoclasts less they lose their parking spot at the White House.
I am astonished to have him explain why the Pacific coast of the US is so avant guarde and innovative (as well as loony). He states that the US has been a melting pot for centuries, and that the West Coast is where two completely different cultural and racial patterns integrated, one from Africa and the east, the other from the Pacific and the west.
I learn that he owned 54 cars in his lifetime, and kept leaving them at airports and forgetting when and where. He migrated to renting, and concluded that “possession” is burdensome.