As we stand today on the verge of yet another military incursion into yet another foreign nation, it might be good to consider the words of R. Buckminster Fuller when he wrote,
“Either war is obsolete, or men are.”
America is at another crossroads as a nation when we can turn away from the wants and needs of a very few individuals who believe that they can colonize the world and hoard resources for themselves. Now is a time when we can recognize that creating Bucky’s vision of “a world that works for everyone” requires cooperation and a new vision of ourselves as crewmembers onboard the planet he named Spaceship Earth.
As one of the first people to recognize and prove that we have enough resources to support all life on Earth, Bucky became an avid champion for the idea of all humans surviving and thriving. Thus, on the brink of another military disaster, his words and wisdom seem more important than when he was alive (1895 – 1983).
Asking, “What would Bucky do in this situation?” the following quote comes to mind.
“If the success or failure of this planet and of human beings depended on how I am and what I do, how would I be. What would I do?” – Buckminster Fuller
We are all responsible, and we can take actions on behalf of ourselves, our fellow crewmembers onboard Spaceship Earth and future generations.
These quotes recognize a basic truth and the individual actions required. The reality is that if a smaller and smaller group of people continues to hoard resources and use most of them to kill other humans, we will vanish as a species. We don’t need to try saving the Earth because the Earth will continue with or without humans. She successfully survived the extinction of dinosaurs, and she will survive the extinction of humans.
We, however, have more choice than the dinosaurs. We have abundant resources at our disposal and the ability to take actions without the consent of our politicians or business leaders. The question remains – do we apply our knowhow and resources to weaponry or livingry (a term Bucky coined as the opposite of weaponry)?
This possibility has not been a viable option until recently, and Bucky Fuller was the first person to statistically prove it to be so. He began this quest in the early 1930’s when working with Fortune Magazine and Phelps Dodge Corp. Those two institutions provided him with access to data about all Earth’s major resources (metals like copper and iron, potable water, food, etc.), and he used that data to calculate the amount of resources available to humans at that time as well as in the past.
In his calculations, Bucky found that every time resources were reused (we now say recycled), we added something special to them. That “something” is knowledge, and by adding knowledge, we can do much more with far less resources. Bucky then decided to expand his data into the future and see if he could determine the time when we would be doing so much more with so much less resources that we could successfully take care of all life on Earth.
He calculated that date to be approximately 1976, which is the year we now know to have become critical in the area of food. Many organizations have calculated that in approximately 1976 we reached a point where there was enough food on Earth to feed all humankind, and this remains true today. Still, approximately 50,000 people will die of starvation today … and tomorrow … and the day after that … etc., etc., etc.
Just as Bucky predicted, we are now finding that there are actually enough of all resources (both physical and metaphysical) to support all life on Earth. That being the case, fighting over or hoarding resources is simply not logical or viable. If you have all that you want and need, does it matter to you if people in Syria or Iran also have all that they want and need?
So, why would we waste valuable resources trying to conquer and kill people in those lands halfway around the world? The simple reason is that some (actually most) people have yet to get the memo that there is enough for everybody.
In that reality, war becomes obsolete as does politics and politicians. In that reality, everybody has all the she or he wants and needs, so they no longer have to do something that they don’t want to do (working for a living) in order to survive. In that reality, our military is transformed from a gigantic killing machine to a gigantic feeding, healing, educating machine that provides livingry to all sentient beings on our tiny Spaceship Earth.
This is a possibility worth contemplating and doing whatever it takes to manifest. In Bucky’s opinion (and that of many others), this is not something to debate. It’s our only option if we want to survive, thrive and leave a viable planet and legacy for future generations.
May all people get the memo that there is enough for everyone to thrive.