Introduction to “The 1999 Scenario”

This post, serving as the introduction what will undoubtedly be a long-running chain of posts, has two foundational aims:

  1. Outline a simulation of a world order in which most Currencies are pegged to the Work-Standard.
  2. Demonstrate how the Work-Standard, including its concepts and ideas, are applied in this world order through a specific institutional actor.

The Fourth Estate contains enough content for me to provide a detailed simulated scenario where it is possible to envisage the Work-Standard and its applications. The world order in question is a multipolar one split into American, German, Russian, Chinese, and Japanese spheres of influence. Set throughout the tail end of the 20th century, “The 1999 Scenario” intends to describe how the Work-Standard functions from the standpoint of a Student Economy within an unspecified nation.

The National Educational System is a natural choice here because its activities are intertwined with the National Economy, Digital Economy, Financial Regime, and National Government. Not only does pivoting toward the Student Economy keep the scale of the discussion within practical parameters, but it will also allow demonstrations of the Work-Standard to be straightforward and easy to comprehend for anyone who has not read any of the Treatises (The Work-Standard, The Third Place and Work-Standard Accounting Practices).

A certain number of topics need to be addressed at various points throughout this chain of posts. They include, but are not limited to:

  • How Life-Energy facilitates Arbeit-into-Geld and Geld-into-Arbeit.
  • How the Value of Arbeit and Price of Geld are determined.
  • How MTEP, NSFIs, State Investments, Economic Socialization and Economic Foreignization are employed across an SSE’s Industries, Enterprises, Professions, and Vocations.
  • How the Student Body receives Paygrades and how they obtain housing.
  • How the Tournaments and Social Ranking System govern economic life.
  • How the Councils and Social Forums conduct themselves, coordinating activities both in the National Intranet and in the Real World.
  • How Student Governments govern their Student Bodies and interact with each other under their superior central governments.
  • How Technologies and the National Intranet are designed and deployed at the behest of the Student Body and the Student Government.

Those are just some of the topics that I would like to explore. Any others will be featured over the course of “The 1999 Scenario.” I have no exact timetable on when this would be completed, but I am certain that it will coincide with the ongoing writing of Entries about the National Intranet. This post and all others associated with it are a separate Section of what is starting to become a new Treatise.

The choice of setting the Scenario in 1999 was a deliberate choice for a variety of Intents. 1999 marks the end of the 20th century prior to the dawn of the 21st century. Whatever was relevant in 1999 is the product of the late 1990s, went on to define the early 2000s, and caused the early 2000s to resemble a continuation of the 1990s in some respects. More importantly, the digital realm was also in its infancy; in the late 1990s, it was difficult to anticipate whether the World Wide Web (WWW) would become as pervasive as it is today. For those who do not remember or were not around in the 2000s, the digital realm reached an important milestone in the late 2000s, more specifically in 2007. As the following charts demonstrate:

The concept of Social Media was relatively new. in 1999 In addition to the uncertainty about the WWW defining much of the digital realm, the digital realm in 1999 was also largely untamed and uncharted by most nations. Since young people are driving much of the digital realm’s development, especially at the secondary and tertiary educational levels, focusing on the SSE was the most logical area of focus.

By 2007, most of the Social Media platforms that can be found on the WWW in the 2020s were still in their infancy during the 2000s. In fact, the vast majority did not exist; they would only become popularized later in the 2010s. The same could be said about Smartphones: although they were already conceptualized back in the 20th century, they did not become prevalent until the 2010s. All of the features found on a conventional Smartphone were carried out by various devices like the PDA (Personal Digital Assistant), Cellphone, Pager, MP3 Player, and so forth. Even Payphones were still around in 1999. That also meant people were less preoccupied with their phones because the purpose of a cellphone, assuming somebody had one, was to make a phone call.

Another consideration is that the size and composition of the digital realm was smaller in 1999. In the 2020s, almost everyone on Earth has so form of access to the digital realm, even if it is just the WWW. In 1999, however, things were different. Back then, access to the digital realm was limited to less than half of the general population in most parts of the Real World. The WWW did not begin to become ubiquitous until the mid-to-late 2000s (around 2005-2009). Even in Western countries, the idea that just half of the population in a Western country was accessing the WWW only became entertainable by the late 2000s.

Lastly, because the early 2000s was more or less a continuation of the late 1990s, we encounter a consistent trend that became discernible in 1999. This trend was not as apparent earlier in the 1990s, as the digital realm itself was still in its infancy and has since disappeared by the 2010s. I am of course referring to this peculiar clash of old and new technologies, of earlier ideas from the 20th century finding new life within 21st century ones.

Can we begin to reimagine a different course for the 2000s in 1999? How different would this world order that I had outlined in the Scenario differ from the one that actually exists?

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