a digital display case

of well-meaning suggestions

one thing

that we as a species are not very good at, is predicting the future. and yet, this has never stopped us from trying.

here are a couple of those imagined situations, which would constitute a future in which i wouldn't mind living in.

  1. no one is legally allowed to earn more than 100,000.00 USD PPP, per year, per capita.

    perhaps the biggest problem we're facing today is that one of the two things that we still conceive of as being limitless is profit (the other one is progress, and even that is debatable). it seems to me that putting a hard cap on how much one can earn could help shift our motivations to do good work from an external one (good work for the good money that it brings) to an internal one (good work for the happiness that it brings).

    what would be your threshold?
  2. the most sought after jobs are the most needed jobs.
    why aren't those jobs highlighted as reliable, future-proof employment?

    in short, nurses and personal care aides. as per maslow, we should start by encouraging what is necessary, and then follow with what is nice to have. recognizing the invaluable (and i'm not using this word as a figure of speech, but quite literally) aspects of said jobs would allow us to get the basics straight, to cover our future and, incidentally, give praise to the people who are currently doing those jobs—people of color and immigrants.

  3. single-occupancy sport-utility vehicles are banned.

    decades after deliberate lobbying from the car industry to install the single-occupancy vehicle as the default means of transportation, the rise of the SUV market is single-handedly maintaining the global CO2 emissions of the automobile market level on the rise, along with taking more and more space on our streets.
    driving a SUV alone in an urban environment is a wasteful and dangerous social marker, and we should find better displays of social worth.

    why do we consider cars as default transport? what does that say about habit and/or convenience?
  4. some members of the government are chosen at random amongst the citizens of the country
    do you trust yourself to make decisions that would affect a lot of other people? and after three months of thoroughly studying the subject?

    the early greek democracies included a randomly-picked citizen in their decision making processes; such a citizen was called "the one chosen by the gods". the assumption here is that, while the information-gathering process still needs to be done by people trained to do so, the decision-making process can be done by people with basic intelligence—i.e. anyone.
    it works for juries: we are very comfortable with the idea of trusting a possible life-changing punishment to a group of randomly-picked individuals. if anyone is deemed able to enact fair justice, why isn't that the case for the rest of our political bodies?

  5. globalization is honest with itself and either limits the flows of goods and capital, or allows the unlimited flows of people.

    if we want a connected world, we need to connect all parts of it. it is expected that population flows would want to follow wealth flows. one of the main reasons why population flows (some call it immigration) might have negative impact on their host (host!) countries, is that they are still denied the possibility to access the wealth create; that is, the right to work (whether or not that work is done for money, or for happiness—see above).
    and if that doesn't work, then we readjust, because systematic inconsistency is fertile ground for political violence, whether ground-up, or bottom-down.

    if we destroy a country's homes, what should the homeless do?
  6. we are seriously considering animal rights.
    are humans animal? what's the likelihood that we are actually special? what's the likelihood that we are not?

    there was a point in history during which white europeans believed black africans did not have souls. this seems absurd today. how absurd will it look in a couple of hundred years that we once thought non-human animals did not have souls either?

  7. residents of a country have a right to vote in local elections.

    if you live somewhere, you probably know better than foreigners (governement officials) what is best for your neighborhood. while that knowledge might not be backed by numbers, it is backed by lived experience, itself a powerful means of understanding.
    additionally, the residents of a country that came from somewhere else have forcibly uprooted themselves to get to where they are now, and that fact alone should be grounds to trust that they want to make the place where they live the best possible.

    what do you think the requirements for voting should be (if citizenship wasn't a thing)?
  8. education is recognized as the single most important factor for making the world a better place.
    why are elementary/highschool teachers so poorly paid?

    another problem that we are confronted with as societies is that everyone is the first human; that is, everyone has to learn everything that we as a group know, from the day they are born. everyone has to learn, experience, assess and re-assess values, morals and priorities.
    while there is no radical solution to this problem, education can mitigate it by speeding up that process, and allowing future generations to stand on the shoulders of those that came before.

  9. we look at the increase of suicide rates in socio-economic categories to inform public policy.

    we spend most of our lives sleeping and working. while, as the great afro-american poet said, "sleep is the cousin of death", work is the majority of what we do on any given day. so perhaps we should start looking at the kind of work that is so unbearable that one is ready to give up absolutely any other possible lived experience to make it stop. and perhaps we'd look at those of us working as policeperson and farmers differently.

    could work really be one of the main drives of killing oneself? if so, why?
  10. we re-consider justice as "love with open eyes"
    what is your definition of justice?

    this means that we assume everyone is trying the best they can reasonably be asked to, and we do not expect less than that from anyone. perhaps this is also called "benefit of the doubt".