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Author Topic: Victory City - City of the Future  (Read 5271 times)

  • Kalendraf
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« Reply #25 on: January 22, 2008, 03:35:30 PM »
Quote from: "Halftoe"
It stands to reason that if calamities of this calibre were increasing as recorded, if many of such events were to occur in a close time period to many different areas, mankind would have difficulty adapting to the sheer destruction which could occur.
As our technology to observe these kinds of events has increases, it is not surprising that the number of them being detected and recorded has similarly increased.  Unfortunately, we lack any real scientific measurements of earthquakes across the globe in centuries past.  We also lack detailed scientific data regarding storms such as hurricanes.  As you stated, man's scale of time is extremely limited, and scientific measurements of our environment are much more limited.

In the human timespan, one of the greatest and most widespread ecological events was the last ice age.  The enormous changes this incurred on humankind as it set in and then left make most other environmental changes pale in comparison.  Yet humanity endured thru this great ecological change.

Earthquakes can be devestating, but their damage is often centralized to a small area of the world.  In addition, many areas of the world have no quakes.  Hurricanes can be devestating to coastal areas, but mainland areas are largely immune to their effects.  The story is similar for other natural distasters like tornados, floods, wildfires, and so forth.

There is no doubt that these can have a great impact on a region, but they do not impact humankind as a whole.  Mankinds dominance of the planet and level of technological progress is not threatened by such events, even if they occur more often in some decades than in others.

Certainly the Great Depression demonstrated the effect of how a major drought impacted upon the economy of more than one 'civilized' country. "Black Monday" is yet another example of how fragile a globalized world can be.
There have been significant changes made to trading markets to prevent events like these from happening.  First, consider the Stock Market crash in 1929.  The market was extremely overheated, and fueled by extreme margin buying.  As the market began to slip, investors bailed en-masse, which lead to the biggest problem of all.  Banks had made huge loans, and were themselves heavily invested in the market.  As heavily margined investors went broke, the banks lost all of that money, and at the same time their own money vanished as the market came crashing down.  A great many banks failed as a result.  As a direct result, the entire banking industry was overhauled to prevent banks from repeating this behavior.

In regards to Black Monday, the market crashed in part due to the then recent growth in program trading.  Automated trading, with fixed sell/buy triggers set the stage for a rapid decline in the market.  As the market fell, automated sell orders, some of which had been outstanding from a previous and signifantly lower-priced market, executed one after another in seconds.  The result the biggest single day crash in the market.  As a direct result of this, markets have enacted new trading practices, including market stoppages to help prevent such a situation from repeating.  It is also important to note that Black Monday did not lead to a new "Great Depression" in part bacause of the fact that the current banking policy largely kept banks from getting hit by this event.

Are we immune to market corrections and crashes?  No, we never will be since that is the nature of how a market behaves.  Will we ever see a repeat of Black Monday?  It's possible, but less likely.  A 22% decline would be hard with the current measures in place.  Will we ever see a repeat of the Great Depression?  Doubtful, at least as a direct result of a stock market crash.  Some other world-wide event (such as a world-wide plague) would be a more plausible scenario to lead us into a repeat of such desperate times.

I sincerely doubt that the blanket statement that 'man can adapt' in the event of significant events, especially in large scale global events (both environmental and economical) is entirely true. If it means we could adapt and survive total extinction that is possible, however I do not believe we could maintain a standard of our current technology and standard of living should such occur.
It would depend heavily on the type and breath of the problem.  If a worldwide plague evenly wiped out 1/3 to 2/3's of the worldwide population (on par with conservative estimates of the Black Plague), it would certainly impact society in vast and dire ways.  Survival would become job #1 for everyone, so our advancement in many fields would likely be put on hold while basics like food, water and shelter were attended to.  Next on the list would be healthcare research, and very likely police/defense to deal with various fighting that might occur over scarce resources.

More likely, however, such a plague would hit areas of the world unevenly, and those societies least affected would find themselves in a position of power and leadership largely by default.

While it may be true man has survived terrible events in the past, Man has never been so inextricably linked as we are today in every aspect. Therefore, an appeal to events in the past is not an accurate measure for how the world would handle a critical global event today.
Agreed, and this is also why I believe we need to focus our attention on scientific research & technological development so that we may better  deal with whatever the future may bring.

Some would argue that the Amish people have achieved what would be perceived as a near utopia. The total reliance upon the community with a lack of regard ones self.
I've met some Amish people, and all is not so rosy in their communities.  There is some major wanderlust among their youth, and some of them choose to leave their communities to seek greener pastures.  It is also a community that is not well-situated to deal with certain emergencies.  The areas in which they live are largely immune from many natural and environmental dangers.  However, their lack of technology greatly limits their rate of communication as well as the ability to respond to other dangers.

I am suggesting that people would live in peace in a Utopian society because they lived and truly believed in moral and just principles. All people would be of one thought and mind.

Humankind has been searching for such a perfect community for centuries, and probably will continue to for many more centuries.  I suspect that some of the very basic needs and desires that make us human are directly inter-related to the very reasons why such a place has never and may never exist.  The only way to achieve this utopia, may require us to give up something we aren't willing to sacrifice: humanity itself.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Kalendraf »

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