How much money under the status quo, would it take to implement the Open Empire Foundation vision?

Ok, this is a big question with a lot of unknowns – and thus one of the longer articles I’ve written so far – but it is precisely the fact that I can’t predict an exact number, that has led me to design everything in the way that I have done … so let’s have a look at how things break down in terms of monetary cost, but let’s also first look at what the vision is actually trying to achieve in the short versus long term. At the end we’ll also have a look at the ROI for this investment.

Vision:

Short term ( 12 – 36 months ):

This could likely be achieved in 6 – 18 months with adequate funding, but given the difficulty of my position, I’d need some radical and rapid changes in circumstances to make that happen.

The vision in the short term is to implement a basic version of the Project Collaboration Development & Resource Allocation Framework which allows other projects to be undertaken, and this means there’s also a need for a basic version of the economic interface to capitalism via the ethical investment hedge fund, and the profit sharing mechanism which forms a part of that interface.

This part of the journey will involve not only building the system, but also testing it with the first projects to be run via the framework; so there will be some kind of product &/or service output occurring from each such test project, and thus return on investment to all investors ( including project staff ) via the ethical investment hedge fund.

Medium term ( 2 – 10 years ):

The medium term goal is to have enough projects running and completed via the framework, that a significant part of the resource requirements for project development can actually be sourced internally, without the need for interaction with the status quo of capitalism, and the scope and scale of projects possible should also be advancing exponentially.

It would be during this phase of its evolution, that some of the “nay sayers” may actually start coming on board to use the system for their own purposes, having seen what it can achieve.

Long term ( 2 – 5 decades ):

Complete replacement of the property/trade/currency-based ( capitalist ) economic paradigm in all its forms. There should be no reason for anyone anywhere in the world to go without their basic necessities of life – assuming in the intervening time we can refrain from killing each other and destroying what remains of our planet’s ecology.

People in this future will no longer own anything, nor will they need to:

  • A resource being used by a person is entrusted to them;
  • A person trying to take a resource from another by force causes stress and harm;
  • Therefore – a resource remains yours to use until either:
    1. Someone actually convinces you – likely with supporting data from the framework, and relating to a project – to voluntarily give up access to that resource for a different purpose, on either a temporary or permanent basis;
    2. Someone actually proves that your failure to relinquish access to that resource (so that it can be used for other purposes), will cause more harm than any harm from forcibly removing it from you, and they use this data to convince others to assist them in taking it from you.

Now, this might seem a little like vigilante justice, but the reality is it’s a better scenario than the bullshit we live with at present where we have to beg for resources, often to people who haven’t the vaguest idea or appreciation of what we’re trying to achieve nor why it’s important.

This hypothetical future scenario offers us the best of both worlds with access to those resources we presently consider “ours”, but with the capacity to temporarily or permanently redistribute resources to other purposes, without the need for any authoritarian hierarchy, because anyone can – provided they have the evidence to support them – form an action to acquire a resource ( by force if necessary ), where the benefits of doing so outweigh any harm done … and if someone has such evidence, why wouldn’t you give it to them?

You’ll have to read other articles to fully understand how individuals and projects acquire resources ( not the purpose of this article ), but I raise the points above for good reason … because at first we have to deal with the status quo, but the faster we can develop a world in which no one needs to worry about their basic needs, and where no one needs to worry about being enslaved by someone else who takes the lion’s share of their productive output – the faster we can reallocate resources without having to justify it to the status quo.

Initial Expenses:

Short term ( $2m – $5m  per project ):

The short term objectives will require a core team starting at just half a dozen people, but perhaps expanding to a few dozen as the foundations are quickly laid. This is a full-time team of dedicated people with very specific skill sets and knowledge, and it is important to hire them to get the foundations of the framework designed and built solidly, so that others can contribute without risking fucking up the stuff that everything else rides on.

In other words: the last thing we want is to have to redevelop stuff from scratch because design flaws were included in the core components of the framework.

This money would be spent on wages so that people can quit their day-jobs and work full-time on the project; it would also be spent on equipment and other resources, along with the legal entities required to interface with the status quo.

Setting up each component of the framework – including the ethical investment hedge fund itself, and all other aspects of the Project Collaboration Development & Resource Allocation Framework – is considered a sub-project undertaken in the framework, just like any other project. At any stage the framework itself can thus use the framework for a sub-project relating to its own evolution.

Medium term ( $2m – $50m per project ):

So we’re now running much larger projects – and more of them – with each one being an investment opportunity via the Open Empire Foundation Ethical Investment Hedge Fund.

At this point however, past projects are going to be outputting resources which might be an input for another project, and since those resources can be allocated to some degree without the use of money, it’s entirely possible that there may even be some smaller projects undertaken which are exclusively resourced by the output of others, and thus require no cash at all ( for the projects themselves, not necessarily implying that all project staff can meet all their personal needs in this manner as well, though that is the end goal ).

Long term ( $ ??? ):

Really there’s no way of saying, as you can see from the previous descriptions, we’re now into territory where the bulk of what we’re doing requires no cash at all, and capitalism is basically in a casket awaiting its funeral service, or already just ashes blowing in the breeze of history.

However what we can say, is that up until this point, we’d likely have invested a few tens of millions into the framework and organisational structure, and hundreds of millions if not billions into the countless projects undertaken by people all around the world via the framework.

Return On Investment ( ROI ):

So I guess it’s a fair question to ask – given the status quo economic paradigm – what exactly is our ROI on all this money spent? So I’ll answer that below from a range of perspectives.

Ecological ROI ( including returns to other species ):

Within the internal economic paradigm of this framework – for every resource harvested, stored, processed, utilised, recycled, or discarded – the consequences of resource interactions are quantified and recorded, so every person involved in every task and activity, is always looking for the least harmful and most beneficial manner in which they can undertake and complete their tasks.

Thus:

  • Killing is kept to a minimum, and the industrialisation of animal agriculture is not a favoured activity – people are thus motivated to become vegan … not “required”, but motivated;
  • Pollution is kept to a minimum, and where 2 alternative technologies are available for the same task, the less polluting and destructive will always be favoured if available;
  • Scarcity is reduced instead of increased, and wasteful things like “inbuilt obsolescence” become things of the past – people are motivated to reduce rather than increase scarcity;
  • Habitat is maximised, because the destruction of habitat is quantifiable detrimental – people are motivated to build underground and in tree houses, as this maximises the above ground habitat for ecosystems and species, which is quantifiable less harmful;
  • Extinction is ceased – yes, stopped entirely ( eventually ) – because contributing to the extinction of species is such an enormously damaging thing, that the more we are able to quantify what contributes to it, the less people will want to have any part in those activities.

We will live in a world in which the damage being done at present, is decelerated – rather than its present state of acceleration – and the rate of deceleration will be maximised; because every single human action will eventually be analysed by specialists, whom can quantify the least harmful way of achieving the same ( or similar ) objectives. People will be free to choose how they do things – as the system is anarchic – but they’ll be motivated by their own self-interest within the framework, to choose the least harmful manner of going about their resource interactions, with respect to avaialbility of alternatives, and others will be motivated to maximise the availability of the best alternatives.

The perfect combination of individual freedom versus ecological outcomes.

Sociological ROI ( including returns to communities ):

Similarly, we will make great gains in everything cultural: music, dance, film, events … because no longer will you have to prove the “economic viability” of a cultural project in dollar terms; you’ll just have to show you’ve got an idea that enough people want to see made real, and you’ll find all sorts of people wanting to get involved to help make it happen, including specialists who will ensure that it’s ecological and social impacts are more beneficial than harmful.

Cultural vibrancy is a direct consequence of cultural diversity and opportunity.

Technological ROI ( including inventions and knowledge ):

At present a great deal of technological invention only occurs because it has some kind of military or commercial application – ie: we don’t invest in technological development because of true “needs fulfilment”, instead we develop things because of manufactured “need” (aka marketing), thus “profit” … or because we can use it to kill, spy, enslave, or steal. Often the better invention will lose a marketing battle, and we end up with the shitty option, because the shittier one is more profitable, and the only way you get the better item, is if you can afford to have it custom made.

Technological excellence is considered a luxury within capitalism, but in the Open Empire Foundation’s vision, it becomes the standard, and quite commonplace.

Further: the rate of technological advancement increases exponentially on top of its existing rate, because we no longer have artificial restrictions on education and opportunity.

Project Staff ROI ( on top of wages ):

If you want a piece of equipment to keep on working, you must give it fuel and maintenance; thus for project staff – during the transition from capitalism – wages are merely the project expense of keeping them operational and maintained.

When an investor ( financial ) puts money into a project, they get to walk away with their time still free, but staff invest their knowledge, experience, energy, AND their time which they can never get back. So staff’s time on projects is considered – from the capitalist perspective during transition – an investment, alongside financial investment … so when projects export goods and services to the external economic status quo, the revenue generated provides financial profits for ALL investors ( including ecosystems that provided resources to that project ), with each “investment” being proportionally weighed in terms of project outcome influence.

In other words: no one gets to “negotiate” for their ROI, it is calculated and quantified by logically and scientifically verifiable principles.

Additionally: as we move through transition to a new status quo, your productive output as project staff is a cumulative statistic, which cannot be stolen or lost, so everything you ever contribute is building up to a natural non-currency-based “retirement” … AND … even if you can’t work because you’re injured, someone else can benefit by caring for you, helping you, and thus quantifiable reducing any hardship or suffering, and potentially providing enjoyment and quality of life, even though you can’t “pay” for it.

Intellectual Property ROI ( sharing your ideas ):

Since there’s no property in the future status quo – but in the present we need to guard our IP so that we can profit from it – the framework provides the motivation to share ideas more freely, because whether you or someone else develops it, you’re still the originator of the idea, and any project outcomes would not have been possible had you not shared it.

For example:

  • You come up with an idea for a film, and you start developing it in the framework;
  • Someone likes your idea but wants to take it in a different direction;
  • They don’t have to “pay” for it, all they do is credit you as the origin of the concept;
  • For the programmers out there, this is like a Git branch ( hard-fork ) of a Project repository;
  • Both projects are now under development simultaneously, and many more can branch off;
  • For those familiar with branded licensing, it’s kind of like automating that … you’re getting credit no matter who does what with the idea, and since no one has to “pay”, you’re not stuck trying to guess which opportunities are the best bet. There may be some limitations to this during transition because of the interface to capitalism, but in the hypothetical future scenario, we get potentially infinite branching.

NOTE FOR MUSICIANS AND ARTISTS:

If you produce art in the future, and someone enjoys or uses your art, no matter how long it has been since your first produced it, you receive credit for that influence you’ve had via your art. Imagine if everyone had unlimited access to every song ever made, book written, or movie produced, without financial limitation … your work would be out there having the maximum influence, and every time it is viewed or experienced in whatever way, a credit for that influence flows back to you automatically, without you having to ever negotiate or worry about getting paid.

Capital Equipment ROI ( returns for lending or giving access ):

If you have any form of property that can be used to benefit a project, this can be input as an investment via the ethical investment hedge fund, right alongside all the capital, ecological, and labour investments.

There’s a lot of infrastructure and capital equipment sitting around unused in the world, and even potentially useful items that are just dumped because no one thought it was worth their while to even bother trying to sell it … but from the perspective of artists, inventors, and others under the status quo, whom are trying to get projects off the ground, any of this stuff is potentially useful … so there’s an incentive both during transition and afterwards to log whatever resources you have access to, as available for project usage – and thus projects can find cash, skills, and other resources more readily.

Financial Investment ROI ( financial and otherwise ):

We need to get the status quo to invest in its own demise, and this is a bit of a dilemma that took me a very long time to figure out … but basically this can be achieved by using a modified financial instrument – based on redeemable preference shares – and a modified architecture of the Blockchain and other concepts in distributed systems, via the ethical investment hedge fund interface, such that their investor expectations are handled, but in a manner which doesn’t undermine the very objectives and principles of the vision.

In a nutshell, an investor wants:

  1. A minimum hurdle-rate ROI;
  2. Risk mitigation;
  3. An exit strategy.

So the framework provides a means for delivering these things, but in a manner investors wouldn’t have thought of – because there’s no one out there doing it quite this way – but all this means is that it will take a little explaining and convincing, but with each successive successful project, they’ll see that it works and gain increased confidence in it.

Summary:

So there you go … of the trillions of dollars flowing around the global economy, we can provide a solid basis for solving the underlying causes of most ecological and social harm and suffering, for a piddling few tens or hundreds of millions of dollars over the course of a few decades … and if that’s not a no-brainer to you, then what the fuck is?