Industrial Society and Its Future

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fiby41
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Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by fiby41 »

I want to know what are the community's thoughts on the Industrial Society and Its Future popularly known as The Unabomber's Manifesto by Dr Ted Kaczynski or has anyone read it?

I found the sections on The Power Process, Surrogate Activities and Autonomy to be the closest to ERE (apart from the ecological and resource depletion concerns)
59. We divide human drives into three groups:
(1) those drives that can be satisfied with minimal effort;
(2) those that can be satisfied but only at the cost of serious effort;
(3) those that cannot be adequately satisfied no matter how much effort one makes.

The power process is the process of satisfying the drives of the second group.

The more drives there are in the third group, the more there is frustration, anger, eventually defeatism, depression, etc.

60. In modern industrial society natural human drives tend to be pushed into the first and third groups, and the second group tends to consist increasingly of artificially created drives.
ERE and the method proposed in the manifesto both try to solve the same problems. FI goal falls in the (2)nd category and thus takes the person through the power process so that he can gain complete autonomy over his life.

The three drives can also be represented on an S-curve in reverse order on an input vs output graph.


Also he EREed since he retired after 2 years of teaching at Berkeley and then lived in a cabin he built himself on land he bought with his brother.
Last edited by fiby41 on Wed Apr 08, 2015 4:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

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fiby41
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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by fiby41 »

In accordance with the conditions of the writer for publishing, this text is in the public domain. Anyone can make and distribute copies of it. You can Ctrl+S the above link or save this PDF.

vexed87
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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

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Added to evernote for a read tonight :)

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fiby41
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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by fiby41 »

Trivia: It may be interesting to note that "You can't eat your cake and have it, too" is the correct form of the proverb, because its order is what illustrates the impossibility. The Unabomber got the order correct in both his manifesto and private writing and this was one of the linguistic anachronisms that helped the FBI identify him.

It also says people having radically different worldview like the people in the manifesto (Freedom Club) or ERE should have as many children as they can.

The reason given for this is that there is more resistance from an outsider to adopt new way of thinking (similar to what happens in religions), but someone who has always lived frugally, efficiently or grown up with parents who live in a particular way will realize the benefit is worth the effort and provide negligible resistance.

Also this makes it possible for the extreme values to be preserved for about a generation and then passed on forward similarly. This only requires an initial effort.

cmonkey
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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by cmonkey »

Personally, I find the story of Ted Kaczynski to be very saddening. While I don't agree with his response to Industrial Society and its destruction of the world, I whole-heartedly understand how he could enter a state where he felt no other option than to take revenge on the system. The DW and I hold a real passion in our hearts for the natural world and it really pains us to see it destroyed, myself in particular.

Its a real tragedy when a brilliant mind like Ted's is completely ruined and broken by the society he lives in.

When asked if he is afraid of losing his mind in prison, I find one of his recent statements very painful to read.
No, what worries me is that I might in a sense adapt to this environment and come to be comfortable here and not resent it anymore. And I am afraid that as the years go by that I may forget, I may begin to lose my memories of the mountains and the woods and that's what really worries me, that I might lose those memories, and lose that sense of contact with wild nature in general. But I am not afraid they are going to break my spirit.
EDIT - It just dawned on me why that comment makes me so sad. It conjures up images of the last scene in 1984 where he ultimately gives in and loves big brother.

Ultimately, however, I find it extremely disconcerting that I have more in common (on an intellectual level) with him than I do with nearly every person on this planet.
Last edited by cmonkey on Thu Apr 09, 2015 10:14 am, edited 2 times in total.

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fiby41
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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by fiby41 »

Trivia: Ted K. updated his current occupation as 'Prison' on his Harvard University website profile.

Hristo Botev
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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by Hristo Botev »

I'm about halfway through reading Industrial Society and Its Future, because I'm guessing it's probably inevitable that you get to it eventually when you're going down the path I'm currently on. And I was sure that someone somewhere on this forum must have brought it up for discussion at some point; and what do you know. Thus far I'm still at a point where I just CAN'T BELIEVE that this thing was written more than 25 years ago; it could've been written yesterday. Dear Lord, as someone with kids, this thing makes me really uncomfortable.

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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by Hristo Botev »

I'm going to post this here, because as I typically do around lunchtime, I pulled up the ere blog to see what the recycled post for the day was, and it correlated well with what I was reading this morning in Industrial Society and Its Future: http://earlyretirementextreme.com/fulfillment.html. Now, I never studied Maslow and don't know anything about his hierarchy, except for what a Google Image search shows me. But, my problem with the particular guest post on the ERE blog today is: yes, I get how shallow and unfulfilling it is to continue to spend so much time and energy at the bottom of the pyramid, focusing on physiological needs that our modern, developed world pretty much takes care of for us with little effort actually needed on our part; but what the hell does "self-actualization" look like in the modern world? Can we really be fulfilled by focusing a majority of our efforts on things like music, or painting, or poetry, when we know instinctively that, ultimately, none of those things really matter--or at least, not the way that feeding, sheltering, and protecting yourself and your family matter? This is the "surrogate activities" concept in Industrial Society and Its Future. At a biological level, aren't we really designed to focus most of our time and energy on satisfying the physiological needs, and isn't it inevitable that the easier it gets to satisfy those needs, the more prone to depression and boredom we'll become? Everything else is just a way to pass the time.

I guess what I'm trying to figure out is, when the poster says: "As such, they continue to play in the lower levels of the pyramid instead of recognizing that they have enough and transcending." What does "transcending" actually look like? And even recognizing that it might be dependent on the person, I'd like to have just one example of what transcending looks like for just one person.

ETA: I'm happy to move this topic elsewhere, if folks are anxious (justifiably) about engaging in any sort of direct discussion on the Unabomber's Manifesto; but I am interested in hearing some thoughts on what fulfillment looks like once folks have the physiological needs taken care of and "transcend" on to "self-actualization." And I recognize that this is of course the same old "ERE, now what?" discussion that's been hashed out on this forum and elsewhere for years.

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Re: Industrial Society and Its Future

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

I think self-actualization is akin to doing the adult version of what interested or emotionally engaged you as a child. The base of the pyramid (NOTE: I think of the process as more cyclical than this imagery) is when you are stuck being an adult doing what you think an adult should/must do or, of course, by direct natural consequences/circumstances.

For instance, when I was a child, I felt sorry for the books that were never checked out of the library by anybody, so becoming a rare book dealer was a self-actualizing process.

Even in prehistoric times, each human being was a unique individual, so I don’t think it’s a problem of modernity.

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