I think I’ve worked out the social form that creates a dynamic, centerless politic! It’s come out of the experience of the ha-ha’s, and involves compression and expansion of the phase space of £-people-time. Circulation of money in equity cycles, what I originally understood as horizontal and vertical but is now sequential in time, makes money ‘well-behaved’ while giving rise to a subjective enumeration network which tracks our own individual personal value. Lovely.
A centreless politic is something I have had my eye out for over a decade. How to create a social dynamic that is centerless, and yet stable? Our current politics and economics suffers from emphasis on the centre, on the pinnacle of the pyramid, on ego, on selfishness and ownership. We area culture dominated by ‘leaders’, and worse, institutional forms that places control centrally regardless of the capacity of the people who occupy central positions. A centerless politics provides us with a completely different social dynamic.
Because of the initial conditions of giving money before deciding where the money is going to be directed, the ha-ha’s create a centerless structure. However, it was only half of the dynamic of the torus — the compressive aspect. That is, when a bunch of people agree to give-it-forward to a smaller number of individuals, represented as the movement from outside the torus to the inside. The other half was not obvious, and is the reason why the ha-ha’s failed — the expansive aspect. What is the social force equivalent to more people being involved? Yup, the Invitational-Protocol. During the co-design period in August, I put it to everyone for the second meeting that we needed to come up with the IP that would work given the limited technology. We don’t have a means of tracking our Invitations, so we settled on using an off-the-shelf ‘crowd-funding’ template.
Anyway, if we sort out the IP, being careful how money-people-time expands, so we have the two parts to making this centerless politic exist!
how many people will we need to make it work?
Because we are dealing with fluids, it is not a straight forward ‘number of bodies’. Just like one’s pulse can be measured not just by number of heart-beats per minute or the blood pressure, the Chinese have several more subtle indicators.
We need to consider density — the number of people within a period of time. We might have several ha-ha’s running simultaneously, each with their own settings. Most of the feedback during the ha-ha’s involved suggestions to improve the tech, making it easier for people to be represented, dreaming up new bespoke tools — check these rather interesting social toys, by the way, specifically Points of Unity.
We wanted to get 100 people in the last ha-ha, to create the conditions that is beyond a small group. We simply don’t have any direct experiential feedback at this level, apart from when we work in companies and governments, or when we are audiences, or take part in self-organising systems like driving on the roads. We didn’t create the conditions, we didn’t meet the right density.
We may also want to consider density in terms of the Invitational-Protocol, how many people we invite, over what period, and with what quality, and range of gleick-group we are tapping into — it is wiser to invite only a few from each social group we may have, rather than all from a social group of like-minded people, which is our traditional way of organising ourselves.
and where to the old folks come in?
Because it works scalably, I have no idea of the threshold numbers from this end, from initial start-up situations; less than a hundred, perhaps only 40, but over a few ha-ha’s. From the back-end of global unity, using the old back-casting thought-experiment we should be familiar with by now, I know the peer group that can make it happen — old people! When we are talking about change over a couple of decades, over a generation, there is only one generation that can almost guarantee that they will not be about, thus deriving our centerless politic. Ie, if it is started with old people, rather than young and wilful, they may be able to kick-start the conditions that in a decade bring fruition for us all globally. It requires this level of vision, something we tend not to think old people have. However, with their age, this kind of period is well within their grasp to understand and to operate by. Think about old folks and their grandchildren, and the legacy they are leaving them globally.
I tried this idea out with a housemate, and the idea got immediately dumped. He only saw the problems that may arise from children worries about their parents being fleeced. Yes, there are problems, and problems which we may not be able to overcome. Still, global unity isn’t going to come about without challenges. This is a challenge that they may need to take on. It is not up to us.
So, I believe this is a rather beautiful invitation for old people to regain some of their lost respect, and bring into existence a sustainable world. I doubt if anyone will get this in this day and age, and also because very few (less than a handful) have any insight of the potential of the protocols, but my, it is beautiful. And the invitation goes to those who are terminally ill, or those who are suicidal — a possible way for them to contribute towards creating a centerless politic. And those mature souls who are playing a less-ego-bounded game; for though they may live to see it happen, they are centrelessness enough in their daily practice, that they have some chance of avoiding the power that comes with social attention.