Work-Standard Perspectives on Demographic Decline and Usury

Those who have read The Work-Standard (2nd Ed.) and The Third Place (1st Ed.) will recall my discussions of the birthrate, which I referred to as a simple ratio between “cradles and coffins.” There is an entirely different way of interpreting a nation’s birthrate beyond the more mundane methodologies employed by demographers. In both Treatises, I discussed how the national birthrate can serve as a barometer of what a nation values most and its relation to Technology.

To begin, recall earlier when I had once stated how the Liberal Capitalist conception of Technology is fixated on “the greatest Quantity of Kapital for the least Quantity of Schuld.” When designed with a Neoliberal design philosophy in mind, Technology eliminates Arbeit in order to create more Kapital. As the higher Quality Arbeit disappears, the ones that remain are of inferior Quality. Under the Work-Standard, this can lead to increased Attrition, which in turn yields Currency Depreciation for any nation’s Sociable Currency.

It can be argued that the birthrate tends to fall in response to the adoption of more Liberal Capitalist Technologies. With the Work-World losing more Intents of creating Arbeit due to growing Incentives for accumulating Kapital, birthrates will drop as an Unintended Consequence which the Liberal Capitalists are apparently incapable of anticipating. I discussed this phenomenon in greater detail in both Treatises in reference to Financialization, Deindustrialization, and the rise of a Knowledge Economy that brought excessive overemphasis on the tertiary educational system. If they could not anticipate that Unintended Consequence in the West throughout the late 20th century, why should we expect them to figure out it now in the early 21st century?

This phenomenon, in spite of increased life expectancies, must yield some form of population decline at some point. As more newer technologies value Kapital over Arbeit, there will be fewer Professions and Domains in the Work-World where one could still create Arbeit. That in turn yields a drastic change in how any Totality perceives the concept of wealth creation. In this context, a lower birthrate should be indicative of a nation convinced that Kapital is the main source of wealth creation and that its Totality poses a Marginal Cost conducive to Diminishing Returns. Proper applications to the Work-Standard by contrast will yield a stable birthrate, and I have outlined a number of possibilities in both Treatises for what that might entail.

But there is a genuine problem with trying to treat one’s Totality as a Marginal Cost in itself. The obvious implication is that “more coffins and fewer cradles” will yield a future situation where the Totality has fewer young people who can create Kapital (or, for our purposes, Arbeit). After all, Liberal Capitalist Technology has not yet been able to automate the Services Sector as easily they had achieved in the Natural Sector (q.v. mechanized agriculture) or the Manufacturing Sector (q.v. automated machinery). Even if they do succeed at creating robots or holograms capable of running the Services Sector, all there is left is the Information Sector and the Government Sector. Let us also not forget that the Liberal Capitalists will never succeed in creating new wealth on the digital realm nor are they content with creating unnecessary bureaucracies for their Parliaments.

Is it any wonder why this Author, even now, remains behooved by the surge in Nativist and Chauvinistic sentiments on the Political Right? Or why does the Political Left seem unable or unwilling to conceive of Technology as being designed with ideologies in mind? That Technology itself can be designed in a manner that one could convince others to adopt one’s own ideology just by applying it within their everyday lives?   

Once we begin to entertain those implications, it is only natural to expect certain Nationals among the Totality to start viewing foreigners with intense suspicion and contempt. The effect become more aggravated if they perceive such Foreigners are being motivated by the pursuit of Kapital. The Foreigners are not there to contribute to their National Consciousness if they are more interested in looking for a place to retire or send Kapital back to their homeland. The Political Right can only express its resentments toward Liberal Capitalist Technology in those terms. As for the Political Left, the entire working class should not be concentrated in the Information Sector and the Government Sector, leaving the rest of the national economy to be done by Automation.

A major trend that I am beginning to notice with Liberal Capitalist Technology in recent decades, and more so in the 21st century, is an unconscious attempt at creating a new form of Usury. The old Usury, the one that Pan-Germanic Socialism resented a century ago, is intended to further interests of Kapital by depriving people of Geld and giving them Schuld vis-à-vis Liberal Capitalist Finance. This new Usury, on the other hand, is merely a reapplication that involves depriving people of Arbeit and giving them Kapital vis-à-vis Liberal Capitalist Financial Technology. It emerges in the form of Universal Basic Income (UBI), which is in itself was in many respects derived from Milton Friedman’s Negative Income Tax, and in the constant fixation on automating all economic life.  

Sometimes, the more something changes, the more it remains the same. Technology may alter the outward appearances of how something is done, but the essence, its design philosophy, is decisive. It remains to be seen if the Political Left and the Political Right will be able to express their ideas through technological means. When that does happen, I am convinced that another way of life will emerge in due time.  It is not a matter of ‘if’ or ‘when’; it is more so a matter of ‘how’ and ‘why.’  

Categories: Philosophy

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