Social Issues Solvable

Concentration and Congestion

To derive the maximum effect of the economy of scale, the available technology of the present civilization created a large-scale mechanization and mass production; in short, a heavy concentration of large-scale capital equipment and work force in small areas. Accordingly, the synchronization of working time was introduced, and rush-hour traffic and congestion followed. In Tokyo, people are commuting every morning and evening in extremely jammed trains for two or three hours. What a waste of time and energy ! A MuRatopian economy will gradually break down such waste, and enable co-workers to have more flex time; that is, it will let them stay in their local communities, or work at their homes. New mechatronic and information technology will make appropriate-size equipment and small organization possible, and accordingly people will be freed from commutation. As workplaces are gradually broken down into small areas, large theaters and music halls in big cities will become historical relics, and instead more personalized entertainment such as home concert by computer-synthesizing music would become more popular. The co-worker's workplaces will sometimes be used as their own concert hall.

Violence and Crime

It is true that crimes stemming from hatred, anger, hysteria, sex, religion, etc. are as old as human history, and, in this sense, they continue to exist in any society and will never be eliminated. In a capitalist economy, however, violence and crimes caused by a nature of human beings are amplified and aggravated. Under the philosophy of Gesellschaft, people are split into small hopeless pieces and treated like the parts of machines. Managers' mismanagement and poor performance are almost always passed on to workers, and workers are always the first to be fired. For them, workplaces have never been safe shelters where they can foster mutual trust and good relations. Even their homes, where they should feel at ease in warm family atmosphere, no longer become peaceful shelters. They distrust each other and fight against each other. Our society indeed has become a contract society which is by its nature easy to break up as if it consists of the falling parts of machines. We have become as if only "In Money we trust", instead of "In God we trust" - the words on the American dollar bill. Under these desperate circumstances of an unfair capitalist system, those who have lost mutual trust and warm human relations, and those who have been treated unfairly in terms of income distribution easily turn to violence and crime. The capitalist system itself creates the conditions of violence and crime.

In the MuRatopian economy, by Principle 3, everybody is entitled to search for the fittest niche and habitat, and once he or she can find it, that place becomes his or her eternal "niche" as long as he or she wishes to stay there. Mutual trust and warm relations thus created in the workplace begin to extend to society as a whole. Since people spend almost all of their life time in workplaces, it should be from these places, not churches and other places, that mutual trust and good social relations start. Moreover, income distribution is fair in the MuRatopian economy (Theorem 9.3). Therefore, the main reason for violence and crime, amplified and aggravated under a capitalist system, will be eliminated. As long as people have their own peaceful "niches" and habitats, and take care of each other as the inseparable members of a society and the globe, most conditions of violence and crime would be subdued. Even animals co-exist peacefully after they struggle for niches and procure them. Hence, we would say that the MuRatopian economy is a place where "In People we trust".

Discrimination based on Hereditary Factors such as Race, Color, Sex, Age, etc.

By nature, people cannot choose race, color, sex, age, etc. since these are given at birth, and they have to live together with these factors all of their life (except sex, probably, because transsexual operation becomes possible recently !). Discrimination arising from these unchangeable factors will never be completely eliminated. In a capitalist system, however, this type of discrimination is systematically amplified and aggravated like violence and crime. This structure of discrimination may be based on the power that some group can exert with total control over other groups through the ownership of the means of production and through managerial power. Under this power structure, some groups based on race, color, sex, age, etc. may be easily trapped into the suppressed classes, and become at the mercy of the suppressing power. In the MuRatopian economy, such a power structure, as in a capitalist economy, ceases to exist simply because the production of goods continues to decline compared with the production of services and information and power based on the private ownership of goods loses its foundation. Hence, discrimination based on the power structure will be eliminated. Moreover, people from the same race, color, and sex can freely form their own MuRatopian organizations if they feel more comfortable in that way, and co-exist peacefully with other similar organizations, with mutual respect but without interfering with each other in small communities.

Discrimination based on Posterior Factors such as Religion, Belief, Culture, Language, etc.

Discrimination based on the posterior factors such as religion, belief, culture, language, etc. is also subject to the capitalist power structure, and is constantly aggravated. There may be some escape from this type of discrimination by way of the assimilation to the majority power groups. It will be very painful in many occasions, however, for some people to give up their own cultural heritage or religious belief, and to assimilate into the majority. In a capitalist system, the only thing left for them to be able to do in such cases is to choose to be minorities and live under the constant threat of discrimination. In contrast, people can freely keep those posterior factors in the MuRatopian economy without any fear of discrimination, and form their own MuRatopian organizations based on these posterior factors as in the case (8) above. Then, they can practice these factors in small communities, by contributing to a society, as its members, with their own product. We already encounter many such future organizations around the world, even today. For example, let us pick up a group of Zen Buddhists in San Francisco and Bay Area. They practice Zen under the religious organization of the Zen Center, and at the same time operate several production units by themselves such as the natural farm in Green Gulch near Muir beech, and bakeries and vegetarian restaurants in San Francisco.

Alienation and Bureaucracy

People feel alienated when they are not allowed to join management and planning at any level of the production process, and they are left entirely uninformed of what they are doing as parts of the whole system, in both capitalist and socialist economies. Under such circumstances, it is impossible for them to feel any companionship and to feel like human beings. Self-management in the MuRatopian economy will surely overcome such alienation among workers. Moreover, it will also destroy bureaucratic power both in capitalist and socialist economies - one crucial source of evils in the present civilization.

(Based on Chapter 10, Beyond Walras, Keynes and Marx, Peter Lang Publishing, 1988.)