We live in an age of “promissory materialism”

As it is in science and the theory of evolution, so it is in commerce and, particularly, finance…

There has been a regrettable tendency of many scientists to claim that science is so powerful and all pervasive that in the not too distant future it will provide an explanation in principle for all phenomena in the world of nature, including man, even of human consciousness in all of its manifestations. [Karl] Popper has labeled this claim as promissory materialism, which is extravagant and unfulfillable.

Sir John Eccles

via What Evolutionists don’t want you to know | hydrogen2oxygen.

Socio-Political complexity…naturally!

Monkeys to Politicians...how did I miss that!?

POLITICAL structures evolve in much the same way as biological species, according to new research. And just as species can decline and vanish without warning, unstable political groupings can also degrade and disappear.

The similarities between animal evolution and political evolution are revealed in research published last week in the journal Nature. The international research team from Japan, the UK and New Zealand [led by Thomas Currie of the University of Tokyo], showed how it could build “family trees” for emerging political structures to map out their evolutionary development.

The thing that most startled the researchers was the fact that “cultural evolution” could be mapped on to a family tree.

“This study highlights the benefits of applying the same kinds of techniques used to study complex systems in nature to investigate long-term human social and cultural evolution,” the authors write.

“Interestingly, these results indicate that political evolution, like biological evolution, tends to proceed through small steps rather than through major jumps in ‘design space’,” they say.

The price of complexity…

They also found, however, that retrograde steps do not have to progress on this “sequential” basis and can come apart more quickly than they are assembled over time.

“This could occur if small, peripheral groups break away from the control of a centralised state or complex chiefdom, or found new societies with fewer levels of political organisation, or it could occur as part of a rapid, more widespread societal collapse and the breakdown of political institutions leaving smaller, less politically complex groups in some regions.”



Introduction to an evolving world:

The human world has always been evolving. What is different is the speed, and the acceleration, of the change that is occurring within the span of a single lifetime. Change and evolution are now an integral part of the life of every person and every human institution.

Present human institutions and systems economic, financial and political are almost all based on a machine model of static processes that was appropriate for a time when change and evolution were proceeding at a significantly slower pace. Institutions and systems based on a machine model are able to cope and survive only as long as change and evolution are limited in scope. When they are confronted with changes that are too large or come too fast their static processes cannot adapt quickly enough and they break down.

The machine model is both a product of the Industrial Age and a creator of the Industrial Age. Like a machine, institutions and systems based on a machine model have the ability to function with great power but they can fail quickly if change overwhelms their ability to change their static processes.

A different model with dynamic processes is required for business, financial and governmental institutions and systems if they are to acquire the ability to thrive in a rapidly evolving world.

A biological model for business and finance:

The biological model is a model of dynamic processes that incorporates change and evolution. It has proven its ability over countless millennia to produce organisms and systems that change and evolve. Not all of the organisms survive, but their components are recycled into new and existing organisms, all part of a proven system of adaptation, change and evolution. Nothing is wasted.

I believe that applying a biological model to business and finance can produce organizations and systems with the ability to thrive on, and create, change. Not all of the organizations will survive, but the systems will recycle the components of failed institutions into new and growing organizations, thus creating a human world that thrives on increasing change.

Objectives of this essay:

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