Emergic: Rajesh Jain's Blog

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Why We Don’t Innovate

January 16th, 2006 · No Comments

Dave Pollard writes:


We soon found that it was useful (for keeping people in line) that many of the artifacts of civilization were addictive, physically and psychologically. We found that, in hierarchical systems, the bigger the better — more slaves at the bottom to leverage, more built-in redundancy, and less competition. We found, too, that this strange, man-made construct, so different from everything in nature, gave us an evolutionary advantage — it appeared to support more people per square mile than ‘natural’ systems, and power brought more power and wealth brought more wealth, to the point we really believed we had ‘improved’ on nature. And after a few generations, the essential survival skills for self-sufficient living had been lost, so we could not go back to a pre-civilization self-regulating lifestyle even if we wanted to — we were prisoners of our own invention.

It is not surprising, then, that as our economy evolved, economic organizations used as their model not the ‘anarchic’ self-regulating model of nature but the hierarchical, command-and-control specialization model of the political state.

I doubt that we have either the time or, with our current massive numbers, and our civilization’s huge momentum in some areas and inertia in others, the adaptability, to evolve our political system (forward, not back) to a self-regulating, networked, natural model. I am less certain that the economic system we have developed cannot evolve forward to such a model.

Tags: Management

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