Redefining Billionaire

I highly recommend Jason Silva's "Shots of Awe" series overall, but this video does a pretty good job capturing what I hope to achieve with this blog.  

Key phrases from the video that help outline what I intend to discuss here:

Exponential technological possibilities
Feedback loops of mind, tool, and world
Radically transform what it means to be human
Radically reach out to one another in ways we haven't before

and especially

What is the new definition of Billionaire? The new definition of Billionaire is...he or she who will reach out and say 'I will positively affect the lives of a billion people.' This should be our goal.  This is our responsibility.

R. Buckminster Fuller coined the term "Spaceship Earth" and that was clearly the source for the title of this video.  However, the notion that someone could actually captain an entire planet is a bit daunting for most of us.  For this too, Fuller provides a fantastic metaphor:

Something hit me very hard once, thinking about what one little man could do. Think of the Queen Elizabeth — the whole ship goes by and then comes the rudder. And there’s a tiny thing at the edge of the rudder called a trim tab. It’s a miniature rudder. Just moving the little trim tab builds a low pressure that pulls the rudder around. Takes almost no effort at all. So I said that the little individual can be a trim tab. Society thinks it’s going right by you, that it’s left you altogether. But if you’re doing dynamic things mentally, the fact is that you can just put your foot out like that and the whole big ship of state is going to go. So I said, “Call me Trim Tab.”
The truth is that you get the low pressure to do things, rather than getting on the other side and trying to push the bow of the ship around. And you build that low pressure by getting rid of a little nonsense, getting rid of things that don’t work and aren’t true until you start to get that trim-tab motion. It works every time. That’s the grand strategy you’re going for. So I’m positive that what you do with yourself, just the little things you do yourself, these are the things that count. To be a real trim tab, you’ve got to start with yourself, and soon you’ll feel that low pressure, and suddenly things begin to work in a beautiful way. Of course, they happen only when you’re dealing with really great integrity.

Instead of trying to do the impossible by becoming the "Captains of Spaceship Earth", I suggest we strive to be "Society's Trim Tabs", "Humanity's Compass" or even "Helmsmen of Spaceship Earth".  Individually, or in small groups, we will never control something that large, and the ego necessary to believe we could would surely blind us as it has so many before us, but if we each steer within our own sphere of influence, we can build enough pressure to adjust our course.

This brings me to the thrust of this post - redefining the term Billionaire.  In this millennium we must stop playing the game of life by the old rules.  In the big picture, if we continue to view success primarily using a scarcity model by which we exploit resources, hoard financial capital, and measure far too many economic interactions using a zero-sum calculation, the clock will run out and it will be game over for humanity.  On a personal level, does having that much money really make us any happier, or does it just feed our gluttonous egos?

On the other hand, I'm sure we can all think of things we have done to positively impact other lives and many more that we would like to do.  Rather than counting our wealth using dollars, we should strive to count our wealth in this way.  Money is but a means toward this end.

For my part, I hope that this blog will extend my reach just a bit.  From time to time, I will post my thoughts here.  Sometimes they will be about specific events and possible courses of action.  Sometimes they will be reflective of things going on in the world.  Sometimes they will express the evolution of my personal thought processes and ideas.  Regardless, I hope that every post will encourage positive change and thereby add just a little to the pressure needed to correct the course of Spaceship Earth.

If you agree, you can start by clicking on my profile picture or my name and clicking the Follow button so you will get notified whenever I post something.  Then please comment if you like my ideas or have something to add.

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