Fade into nature
We all pursue a better life. But what does that mean in the physical world? More, better, bigger of everything?
In today’s consumer society, we often don’t know much about the things that we use every day: how do they work, what are they made of, how were they produced. Without that knowledge, it’s hard to make educated guesses about the impact of our purchasing decisions on our environment and even ourselves. But more and more people are aware that what we eat, wear, watch, build, ride, etc. may have natural, health, ethical impacts.
You don’t want to wear a shoe that was assembled using forced child labor; you don’t want to eat processed food that increases your exposure to diseases of civilization; you don’t want to destroy complete regions by using energy from coal power plants. And yet, most (if not all) of us do that every day. While the same motivation that makes humankind achieve more and more amazing things (even the sky is not the limit anymore) also pushes us to create more and more trash and pollution.
So how to deal with this dilemma? The simplest answer is to lower our consumption. However, no consumption means no life, so we should find the happy medium.
(By the way, humanity made a lot of progress in the direction of the more complicated other solution as well. It includes expanding our territory and involving untouched resources. After all, we are only tiny points in a huge solar system, galaxy, and universe…)
In our dreamland, if you want to carry an idea (either your own or someone else’s) into execution, you should create a project. Projects are rated just like any other posts, as detailed here. The only difference is that projects should include a simplified business plan.
This includes only factors that are relevant to sustainability:
- Ecological footprint (the project’s impacts on the environment, and a plan to remediate any adverse side effects, including handling obsolete products),
- Expected usage of natural resources (both renewable and non-renewable),
- Product (a high-level description is sufficient), and
- Restitution period (how long does it take to safely cease the project and eliminate all impacts).
If you get more likes than dislikes, you can start your business, and don’t have to worry about taxes, all profit is yours. (The longer the restitution period is, the more likes you need.) However, you must comply with your own business plan (you may update it when needed) and suspend your activities whenever you lose public support.
If there are multiple projects that need the exact same natural resources (for example, the same land), the one with highest support prevails. In this world, natural resources are not on the market; you can’t buy them, you can use them only if you get public support for your project. The community has full control over land, water, air, rare-earth elements, heavy metals, while the owners of the most supported business ideas get access to these.
Let’s see a project from different perspectives. If you are the owner, you need to publish some information and get public support as detailed above, but there are many other things that you don’t need to disclose: resources that you plan to purchase, employees who you plan to hire, how do you plan to create the products or provide the services, and so on. If you want to open a barber shop, for example, it may be enough to write two sentences about its location and impact on the neighbors.
It’s also important to note the role of individual responsibility. There are no legal entities in CoIn; you need to assume all responsibility or bring in co-owners (who are also individuals). The toughest part is the financing: in the world of collective intelligence, there are no banks or loans, so if the owners don’t have enough money, they can “go public”: let anyone invest money, and in return, let them keep the proportional part of the profits for any preset investment period (but investors don’t have voting rights here, unlike shareholders in today’s world).
If you are a neighbor or someone who is impacted by the plans, you can raise your voice and vote for or against the project. If you have money, you can try to become a co-owner or an investor. If you are looking for employment, knowing the projects gives you an idea about the open positions. If you want to start your own business, you can get inspiration from the others. If you are a potential customer, you can assume that all natural, health and ethical impacts were considered during the assessment of all projects (and you can actively participate in those by discussing and / or voting), and don’t have to feel guilty during shopping. Do you buy that?
Originally published at https://coin-pardun.com on December 30, 2021.