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Interview: Peter Joseph on RT: Moving Beyond Money (2011)

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Also a huge financial burden which brings us now to the economy. You know for a great many people it's become a system that is in part, broken, in part a result of the 2008 financial collapse. . So how do we climb out and get to a place of progress? Well, you know, big problems need big ideas and here's one. Start with this: money and throw it away. It sounds crazy, right? Well, now we're going to talk to someone who thinks this might be . exactly what we need. Peter Joseph is a film maker and also the founder of The Zeitgeist Movement. Hey there Peter, I'm of course simplifying here. It's not just get rid of money or currency. It's instead making this monetary-based economy... you make it a resource-based economy. Talk about what this actually means. - Well actually, you're half right. A Resource-Based Economy explicitly does want to remove the actual mechanics of exchange and the market system itself, as radical as that may seem to most. You have to understand, first of all, that the problem we're seeing in the world is not the result of some bad policy some legislation or some inflationary cycle boom and bust phenomenon that we're typically taught in traditional economics. The very foundation of the economic structure is intrinsically flawed. We create money out of debt. We charge interest on it which doesn't exist. We create the principal, but yet the principal plus the interest is always outstanding. People, it's a game of musical chairs to put into a singular phrase. Everyone systematically suffers through this system and its offset. So when you hear about debt collapse, sovereign debt defaults these are inevitabilities of the system. They're not based on just someone's rogue policy or some flagrant activity of the stock market and derivatives granted those are very important attributes of it. But my point and my work with the movement is that the system is intrinsically, inherently flawed. And for us to get on a scale, on a pace, on a... in a way to make our society sustainable and not suffer all these economic consequences, we have to get down to the life-ground . and what actually supports human life, what we've learned from the natural world, the systems that actually generate food. When you realize this, we live in a technical reality not a monetary one. For example, one child dies every five seconds from poverty and preventable diseases on this planet. This is, of course, unnecessary technically. We could easily feed everyone on this planet. And when you extrapolate that train of thought, when you take a technical perspective as opposed to a monetary perspective we see we could resolve just about all the major human woes . on this planet by restructuring the entire economic phenomenon to be truly economic, meaning preservation, sustainability. - You were talking earlier and you said: "Everyone suffers by the system." I think that maybe... let's clarify a little bit. A lot of people suffer but there are some people who want to keep this system exactly how it is. Isn't that right? - Yeah, I'd say the upper 1% [...] certainly has a prime interest . has a very easy way to justify the fruits that they've claimed. We have 1% of the world's population owning 40% of the planet's wealth. If that isn't a signpost to the intrinsic flaw of this system that it's there to perpetuate one class over another, I'm not sure what is. So yes, the upper 1% has a very vested interest and naturally that carries on to the governments which are essentially funded and supported by the corporate institutions. - And I know... - ...that continue this. - You've written about this large gap between the rich and poor and I know one point that you've made in your writings is that America is one of the most socially immobile countries in the world. I kind of had to stop and read that again when I saw that but basically what you're saying, I think, is: If you're born poor, chances are you will stay poor other than of course a few exceptions. How does this change under the "Zeitgeist system"? - Well, it's not the "Zeitgeist system." This work builds upon research by a man named Jacque Fresco which builds upon researchers from the past 150 years people that have continually thought about a different economic model not based on monetary exchange and all of the intrinsic problems that come out of that. The Venus Project is something important to mention which I suggest people look into that has a partnership with The Zeitgeist Movement . and it's a blueprint system based on referencing natural law. What that means is you actually get to the life-ground as I mentioned earlier. You look at what it means to make a human being, what it means to meet the needs of human necessity from obviously the bare necessities to all of the emotional and biopsychosocial phenomenon . that actually generate our behaviour, well-being, and mental health. When you put all this together which is a completely technical orientation . very limited when it comes to human opinion this is what science has given us, by the way. You see that the current economic model is stuck in time. It's not actually representing what meets human needs and the more you step back and look at how we could technically provide for the human population, eliminate war, eliminate famine eliminate poverty, eliminate 95% of most crime which by the way is monetary related you begin to see that an entirely new approach can be taken. It's very difficult for me to describe that to you in a very short little segment, but a Resource-Based Economy is based upon resource management intrinsically. Monetary relationships don't manage anything. We have cost efficiency. We have all of these things that inhibit our ability to create sustainable goods. We have established institutions that are constantly trying to preserve their market share. It's essentially a mafia orientation. It's one group against another, everyone's battling, and we have this illusion that somehow it's for the betterment of us . that we have this self-interest and it isn't. It's provably not if you look through history and what we're actually doing to ourselves, and we're on a train-wreck to a complete environmental disaster and a social disaster. - Peter, I want to interrupt you real quick. I can just hear the bad election commercials in my head. You know if this movement gains momentum the people who this system does benefit are going to come back and this is what they're going to say: "He wants to bring us back to ...he wants to make us a communist society." What do you say to that? - That's all they know, that's their entire frame of reference. You see, the propaganda of the West and the Free Market or the Free-for-All-Market, as I call it is to constantly assume back, orient back to these old structures that were based on autocratic dictatorship with no real communist attribute to it all. A true communist idea is a family, something I think we can all relate to. We are about intelligent resource management learning about how to take care of ourselves technically and creating a ground-up system that does that. And the only way you can do that is by the elimination of this... this supposed self-interest intrinsic attribute of our system that we think is natural. Obviously we all have self-interest, but self-interest must become social-interest if we expect to survive as a species, very simply. - I think one of the questions people would have is under this system, what's the incentive? What's the incentive to contribute more, to try harder if in the end, we're all gonna be equals? - Well, first of all, no one is just equal in an arbitrary sense. That's a loaded kind of concept. [We're] equal in the ability to get the necessities of life to get out of the materialism that we have, that fuels this conspicuous consumption that's destroying the planet. These values will change, so the incentive will be people actually understanding that when they contribute to society or do something real, not work in advertising or the stock market . when they do something, and they're educated to actually contribute to society, it's for their own self-betterment themselves. So if I was an inventor, I would invent something not to make money off of it. That's a very sick, distorted idea. I would invent something to better the world, knowing that that would come back to me in my own betterment. So it's a completely different value structure, and the best thing I can relate to you is the idea of a family. The idea of what it means to live in a family and the respect that's mutual in a family, where you are not tipping your mother every time she brings you something at the table. It's an entirely new value system orientation, and unfortunately we have to undo the tremendous psychological distortion that has been created after, more or less centuries of this despotic system that is failing right in front of us and will lead to simply more war, more poverty. So I don't really have to defend it, but the fact that all you have to do is watch what's happening right now and what's going to continue to happen, if you follow the trends. -And just real quick if you do look around at what's happening especially right now, this is not a... I know your idea and your Movement has followers all around the world more than 200 countries have chapters. Talk about why this is not just a national idea but kind of an international one. - Absolutely, well, sovereignty is essentially a mirror of a corporate concept. It's a self-preserving idea. . The world is gonna have to learn to work together. I'm sorry to say to all the politicians out there: jingoistic, patriotic. In the words of Albert Einstein: "Patriotism is a disease". It's one world. It's a single round planet, and it's time we recognize it as such. We have to manage the world in this way too, so there's a firm technical reality, it's not just philosophical. So the Zeitgeist Movement is about bridging the difference between all races, all nationalities, all religions everything that divides us because we all have to come back to the basic necessities of life and we can't even get that right within a monetary system. The suffering is unacceptable and not necessary. So it's not... It's a global movement, firmly global. - Unfortunately, we're out of time Peter but certainly a big idea in this time that is filled with some really big problems. Peter Joseph filmmaker and also founder of The Zeitgeist Movement.

Video Details

Duration: 9 minutes and 36 seconds
Year: 2011
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: Russia Today
Director: Russia Today
Views: 1,530
Posted by: zeitgeistportugal on Mar 26, 2011

“We live in a technical reality, not a monetary one,” he added. “When you take a technical perspective as opposed to a monetary perspective, we see we can resolve just about all the major human woes on this planet by restructuring the entire economic phenomenon to be truly economic – meaning preservation and sustainability.”

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