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Old 10th-April-2011, 10:54 PM   #1
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Default Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

I came across this documentary called Zeitgeist: Moving Forward, and I am truly blown away. It is both an informative and persuasive critique on Capitalist and Individualist society. The argument is that the current economic/cultural/social approaches within these societies are inherently not only inefficient, but toxic to human nature and opposing what is required to foster mental and social well-being. It advocates a "resource-based economy".

For me this really hits home, because it encapsulates and effectively articulates most of what I have personally perceived regarding the flaws of Capitalism and the reason why our country is so violent and generally not peaceful. Although I am not sure whether the 'solutions' proposed in the last half will be heeded any time soon or will work, I am glad that there is a growing interest in examining the forces behind the problems that plague us.

This documentary is part of a trilogy, though "Moving Forward" is recommended most and is the most comprehensive. I know it's long, but I strongly encourage anyone who is intelligent to view this. The logic and the vocabulary are somewhat advanced, so as long as you can follow it I doubt it will lose your interest. I'm especially interested on what people on this forum have to say in reflection...

http://www.zeitgeistmovie.com/ (download the torrent on the far left for higher quality)

or Youtube (below)


" title="YouTube - ZEITGEIST: MOVING FORWARD | OFFICIAL RELEASE | 2011" target="_blank">YouTube - ZEITGEIST: MOVING FORWARD | OFFICIAL RELEASE | 2011
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Old 11th-April-2011, 04:40 AM   #2
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

It was the first "Zeitgeist" film that left a very bad taste in my mouth. It made claims that appealed to me, I formerly believed, deeply investigated, and discarded as complete unmitigated ideological BS. I therefore have a prejudice against this newer film. I don't think it can possibly have the same level of BS that oozed out of the first film, but I certainly wouldn't trust any of the claims contained within it without evidence and sound argument.

I watched and listened to about the first 50 minutes. Nothing so disagreeable. Covers legit science about epigenetics. I detected the first instance of shameless BS at about 0:47:20. The narrator states:
Adam Smith never fathomed that the most profitable economic sector on the planet would eventually be in the arena of financial trading or so-called investment, where money itself is simply gained by the movement of other money in an arbitrary game which holds zero productive merit to society. Yet, regardless of Smith’s intent, the door for such seemingly anomalous advents was left wide open by one fundamental tenet of this theory: Money is treated as a commodity, in and of itself.
"...zero productive merit to society." There is something deeply wrong with that assertion. All of the products you own and all of the services that you receive from the market are paid for by people who started businesses, and to start businesses they need to invest. If your kids want to run a successful lemonade stand, they need capital--table, chair, lemonade, advertising, business license fees, and attorney fees for defending the occupation of an ADA-protected sidewalk. Without the start-up capital, they simply cannot have a business. After they successfully start up, they may want to significantly expand. Maybe they want to sell their lemonade with shots of vodka. They need bottles of vodka, shot glasses and more attorneys, and they don't have quite enough money to do that, but they can raise money if they sell shares of their business to investors. Without the investment, you simply wouldn't have your children selling hard lemonade. Is that the kind of world you want to live in?

Maybe the film gets better after that. I don't know.
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Old 11th-April-2011, 05:29 AM   #3
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Its critique of capitalism is fallacious.
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Old 11th-April-2011, 12:59 PM   #4
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Zeitgeist addresses that interest is bad, and anybody with a sane mind would of course agree with that. But the tricky part in Zeitgeist (and all similar socialist/communist/technocrat-movements) is that they pretend as if "free market" & "interest based money" are inseperable concepts. They are not! Who says you cant make a value counting system without interest?

Free market (with whatever value counting system to use as an exchange medium) is a fine distributed/decentralized system. Since it is not centralized, it is uncontrollable by psychopathic power mongerers and control-freaks, but only as long as there is no centralized interest-based-hierarchy that can circumvent the free market. It is interest which centralizes power because it makes the rich richer and the poor poorer and thus enables the rich to circumvent the free market. If interest is out of the window then free market is the best there is.
Zeitgeist does not address this, so they are either lacking in awareness/intelligence or it is because they are liars. Both would not be very good options to put your trust in.

All socialism/communism/technocracy (including Zeitgeist even though they say they are not) attack free market. Why attack a fine decentralized system like free market? Because they are control freaks that cannot stand free market. In the end it is always about centralization of power and control. So they lie and cheat you and pretend they care, but all they want is to centralize control into a "singularity" (a central point). If you look at their futuristic city pictures, you clearly see centralization, the central point of control in each city which is linked to a central control center for the Earth. They promote centralized control of the Earth as a good thing which is damn scary.

They find flaws in the current system to shoot the whole system down, which is a fine strategy actually, but what is not so fine: they plan to build something even worse.

Even if somebody would build a centralized system with all the good intentions, then it is still a matter of time before some psychopath sees the attractive shiny exploitable central singular hub through which all value flows and seizes control over it. Centralized points are doomed to fail because they always attract the worst psychopaths. It's a vampire magnet! Central point of control = central point of failure.

The only way to make the world a better place is to decentralize everything and get rid of anything that smells like a central point.
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Old 12th-April-2011, 07:47 AM   #5
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

as sad and broken as the world is right now, merola, fresco et al. are just selling a faulty plan, based on an impossible premise - that human beings can be educated out of wanting what is bad for them.
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Old 12th-April-2011, 08:22 AM   #6
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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Originally Posted by merzbau View Post
as sad and broken as the world is right now, merola, fresco et al. are just selling a faulty plan, based on an impossible premise - that human beings can be educated out of wanting what is bad for them.
In addition they put forward no rational means of economic calculation for their world without money.
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Old 12th-April-2011, 09:14 AM   #7
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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Originally Posted by ProxyAmenRa View Post
In addition they put forward no rational means of economic calculation for their world without money.
i agree, all of their scheme is very nebulous and half-baked, but it's their proposal of collectivist thought reform that most annoys me; the arrogant assumption that if only we were all properly educated we'd all want the same things, and live in peace and harmony forever. human beings don't work like that, and many lives have been lost and blood shed to remind us of that fact.
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Old 12th-April-2011, 12:23 PM   #8
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

It's tempting to like Zeitgeist, but it doesn't stand up to critique. How they managed to get through the whole movie Moving Forward, without mentioning the phrase "command-based economy", is quite a mystery, considering that's what they're essentially promoting the whole way through.

By the end, it just gets quite ridiculous. Even though they make some good points, such as how interest makes the rich richer and the poor poorer, there really are many many holes and even blatant mistakes in their arguments. For example, their assertion that income tax is illegal because one justice of the peace ruled it so fifty years ago? Uh, no. They must not know even the basics of the legal system because that decision was quickly overturned by a higher court. And do any of us really find those circular cities appealing? I'm sure I'm not the only one who finds them just a little bit creepy.
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Old 12th-April-2011, 09:55 PM   #9
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Interesting thoughts. I don't really care how many holes they have in their argument, I believe the frame of the argument is very valid, which is that Capitalist/Individualist societies are inherently less peaceful, more violent, and psychologically unhealthy. I don't think they have failed to prove this. The rest of the video I could care less about, and this is unexplored territory so I'd expect an imperfect plan/solution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by merzbau View Post
as sad and broken as the world is right now, merola, fresco et al. are just selling a faulty plan, based on an impossible premise - that human beings can be educated out of wanting what is bad for them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by merzbau View Post
i agree, all of their scheme is very nebulous and half-baked, but it's their proposal of collectivist thought reform that most annoys me; the arrogant assumption that if only we were all properly educated we'd all want the same things, and live in peace and harmony forever. human beings don't work like that, and many lives have been lost and blood shed to remind us of that fact.
So you guys are suggesting that humans are inherently evil, greedy, and malicious? I don't buy it. The idea that the current state of humanity is it's only natural one is complacence and ignorance. It's nice to believe that our choices supposedly are 100% conscious and uninfluenced. The fact of the matter is, the values we hold and choices we make are mainly the result of how we are raised (e.g. "programed") since birth. If you raise people to be selfish, greedy, and competitive, you end up with adults that are such. And alternately, if you raise people to be considerate and sharing you get such adults. Humans are running on biological 'operating systems', which is why you see different cultures having different problems/strengths. While it may be true that having an ego predisposes us towards irrational decisions, a programming structure that fosters the ego is the real culprit. This however, does not rule out that we can learn from our mistakes using logic and general critical thought.
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Old 14th-April-2011, 01:26 PM   #10
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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Originally Posted by Beat Mango View Post
It's tempting to like Zeitgeist
Tempting? No way! Do I have to slap you?

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So you guys are suggesting that humans are inherently evil, greedy, and malicious?
No not all people are bad. But some are, and they will always be around.
If there is enough for everybody (e.g. a situation of abundance) then as a result there will be less bad people, true, BUT there will still be some bad people anyway! NEVER FORGET THAT

The last left-overs of bad people will profit immensely from a world of all good people.

The Zeitgeist people pretend as if bad/evil people will not be around to hijack their hierarchical totalitarian machine. Such assumption is a joke!

Their whole system IS MADE to be taken over. It is PERFECT for it.

Either they are blind fools, or they pretend as if they are blind fools and thus purposefully lie to you.

Their system is a huge hierarchical totalitarian global device with an empty throne on top, AN EMPTY THRONE JUST SITTING THERE, and you think nobody bad will try to sit in it??? come on!!
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Old 16th-April-2011, 01:04 AM   #11
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

^^ I'm sorry if you misunderstood me, but where in this thread have I given the impression that I advocate the system proposed in the latter half of the film?
In fact in the first post I said I am not sure this system will work.

I am commenting on our CURRENT SYSTEM, not the one proposed in the film. What I am arguing is that our current system is a breeding ground for psychopaths, sociopaths, and mentally/socially unstable people. And also, I am not at all saying that a society can eliminate bad/evil people, but it certainly can minimize the amount of bad people if it's citizens are programmed in ways that encourage humanistic values. One cannot reasonably deny that the socio-economic system and culture associated with it will have a huge influence on the RATIO of good to "bad" people that it creates.

And in light of this I maintain that the programming we all receive from American culture (directly related to capitalism) is inherently conducive to the creation of a high amount of bad people relative to good people. This should be no surprise when the predominant themes of our culture are "ME, ME, ME above others" and "CONSUME as much as you can."
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Old 17th-April-2011, 11:17 PM   #12
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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...will have a huge influence on the RATIO of good to "bad" people that it creates.
I agree on this as well.

And I understand your whole previous post as well, just didnt like that you said that it was even "tempting"

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"ME, ME, ME above others" and "CONSUME as much as you can."
narcissism!
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Old 18th-April-2011, 11:50 PM   #13
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

^^Actually it was Beat Mango who said "tempting."

And yes, narcissism is highly fostered by our culture. When you combine narcissism with the free market system, the result is a ton of people making victims out of tons of others for material gain. I know several people including myself who are mentally scarred for life because of being horribly betrayed by a "friend" (not to mention a stranger) for material gain.
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Old 19th-April-2011, 12:37 AM   #14
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Honestly, what right do you guys have to force your morality or ethics onto other people who have a different value system to you?

People have the right afforded to them by their inalienable wills to enter into voluntary and free transaction and implicitly derived from this, people have the freedom to not to transact. The ones who revile materialism have the freedom to not engage in the behaviour that characterises materialism. The revulsion of materialism does not afford one the right to engage in what you guys implicitly advocate, the prevention of people acting on their wills and in accordance to materialism.

Free market capitalism is strictly not a zero sum game. When people meet in the market place and both perceive a benefit in a transaction which outweighs the perceived costs, they freely choose to enter into this transaction and they transact, hence, both parties receive the anticipated benefit. Now in a free market capitalistic society you're perfectly free to get together and practice what ever mental wankery you see fit such as the 'resource based economics' as advocated by the zeitgeist movement or any other socialist derivative so long as you don't violate the rights of others.

One last thing, please refrain from stating that the current system in the US is free market capitalism or even capitalism for that matter. In reality it is a corporatist welfare nationalist society where government intervenes in every market and has a monopoly of the issuance of currency. Here is a litmus test for you: If there is a central bank, not capitalism.

See thread 'Economics and Philosophy: All Verses Proxy' if you would like to reply.
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Old 19th-April-2011, 01:50 PM   #15
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

i wouldn't suggest that humans are inherently evil or malicious, far from it.

divisions will exist with respect to taste, ideology, perspective, conscience, philosophy, music, art, sex, politics, drugs.. what one person finds unsightly is vital to another. people have different wants and needs, and these arise from our personal identity. fresco promises abundance, that whatever you want, you can have. well, what if an individual wants something different to others, something fresco may call "aberrant." the problem of judgement arises, someone will have to classify what is normal to want and abnormal to want. if we have to readjust our very being to not want something because it is classified as abnormal, how exactly are we free to choose what we want? fresco proposes building a utopia, and if the human doesn't suit it, it's beause the human is "wrong", not the utopia.

the film asserts that society progams people to be unhappy, yet there is no mention of how to program them to be the opposite. that's because they don't know how. precisely what procedures do we follow, from embryo to adult to produce "normal" behaviour? explain in clinical terms how to make people never be violent or unhappy, and who all want the same things as everyone else?

science and technology are useful tools for progress and understanding. but they are nothing without humanistic principles to guide them. the moral and ethical problems we face as a species and a civilisation ultimately transcend science and logic; they are fundamentally intractable. some individuals, no matter how much you disagree with them, how "beautiful and lofty" your pleas are, will remain intransigent. people cannot be educated out of wanting what is "aberrant". to zeitgeisters, however, this is unnacceptable. they see the human as a machine built to identical specs, reacting predictably and reliably every time, as long as correct inputs are fed in, and the software is up-to-date.
certainty is the cold x + y = z at the heart of RBE theory. no-one in the movement, in all the pollyannaish lectures devoted to it, seems to mention the problem with applying this naive, utilitarian equation to society.
x will repel y, just to prove z wrong. you will never be able to educate everyone into mass conformity. and why would you want to? it's a horrifying, inhuman idea, and the province of a multitude of cautionary dystopian tales. but RBE is even worse - to the zeitgeisters, it elevates reason and scientific method to spiritual realms. merola calls it "divinity in action", a pure and absolute good. an engineered god.

ps. check the news, even merola and fresco are not immune from differences of opinion - they're no longer working together.
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Old 20th-April-2011, 12:28 AM   #16
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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they see the human as a machine built to identical specs, reacting predictably and reliably every time, as long as correct inputs are fed in, and the software is up-to-date.
This is essentially the way humans are, it's not a false conclusion by any means IME. However, the outcome is not reliable "every time", but most of the time, and when the outcome is reliable 'most of the time', the assertion is validated.

The idea of free will is a toxic concept that is undermining the accountability of authority figures. It's true that most of us have choices and options, but how we APPROACH those options and DECIDE among the choices is largely the result of how we are programmed. This has been verified extensively by social/scientific research. I also see this verified first-hand through my own observation. The point is, that many of our devastating social problems could have been prevented.
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Old 20th-April-2011, 07:17 AM   #17
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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The idea of free will is a toxic concept that is undermining the accountability of authority figures.
on the contrary, i see zeitgeist's behaviorist polemics as a logical defense for authority figures, or anyone else who wishes to primarily blame external entities for their actions. free will, on the other hand, would necessitate personal responsibility and accountability, two things sorely lacking from our technocratic system of government.

with regards to our decisions being due to our "programming", i simply maintain that there are no actual proven systemic procedures to breed people who will choose to not be "aberrant".
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Old 20th-April-2011, 10:00 PM   #18
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free will, on the other hand, would necessitate personal responsibility and accountability, two things sorely lacking from our technocratic system of government.
I'm going to strongly disagree with this statement. Our governing system operates on nothing but free will. When someone is murdered, the law points the finger at the killer, and the killer alone. There is no investigation into why/how the killer turned into a sociopath, the law assumes the killer made a perfectly conscious decision that was not influenced by external forces.

This assumption neglects the true forces that shaped the person into a sociopath, for example childhood abuse. 90%+ of murderers were abused as children: this strongly infers that the abusive parents played a huge role in the child becoming a murderer. Because the law assumes free will, the problem of childhood abuse does not receive the attention it deserves (nor does society for the role it plays as well), and thus the cycle of creating sociopaths is continued. Government operates much like healthcare: only the symptoms are treated, while the underlying problems are ignored.

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with regards to our decisions being due to our "programming", i simply maintain that there are no actual proven systemic procedures to breed people who will choose to not be "aberrant".
I can name a few instantly. Canada. The Amish. Small tribes. The instances of violence and general social malaise in these societies are drastically lower than in the US. So, either these people are more peaceful because they are somehow 'special' or 'different' than us AT BIRTH, or because their culture and values are drastically different than ours. Which do you think is a more reasonable explanation?
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Old 21st-April-2011, 02:34 AM   #19
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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I'm going to strongly disagree with this statement. Our governing system operates on nothing but free will. When someone is murdered, the law points the finger at the killer, and the killer alone.
mitigating factors are common in legal defenses, and they are taken seriously.
on the flip side, how may CEOs did you see being called to account in the midst of the GFC turmoil?


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There is no investigation into why/how the killer turned into a sociopath, the law assumes the killer made a perfectly conscious decision that was not influenced by external forces.
yes many people will oversimplify the causes of things, but even so, people are still culpable for their actions. if a drunk driver hit and killed someone, would you punish the driver or blame the alcohol company? i suspect the truth of the matter is somewhere in between.


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I can name a few instantly. Canada. The Amish. Small tribes. The instances of violence and general social malaise in these societies are drastically lower than in the US. So, either these people are more peaceful because they are somehow 'special' or 'different' than us AT BIRTH, or because their culture and values are drastically different than ours. Which do you think is a more reasonable explanation?
amish people don't educate their children past the 8th grade. is that how they program people to be happy? stifle academics? how would you react to a society where someone stepped in to your life and said "no more learning for you, it causes aberrancy"?

i requested clinical procedures, not communities. those groups are much smaller than the US, and people across those countries/communities ane hardly exposed to the same controlled environmental conditions anyway, so if there is a significant difference in rates of violence/deviancy, there's no reason to conclude it's because of the environment they live in.
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Old 21st-April-2011, 04:11 PM   #20
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

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^^Actually it was Beat Mango who said "tempting."
aha sorry!

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And yes, narcissism is highly fostered by our culture.
Many psychologists have published statistical proof of a rise in narcissism in society.

So what is exactly the root cause of the rise of narcissism?

For those who dont know much about narcissism: Many people think narcissism is about "loving yourself in the mirror" or something like that, but narcissism is like secret sadism: They hate everybody, but are too selfish to admit it (because it is bad for self/image to admit that).

Narcissist are compulsive liars (it is natural to lie to those you hate). So if everybody is slowly becoming a narcissist, then we are all slowly becoming liars. And it makes a lot of sense that you hate everybody if you experience that they are all liars. So its a self-reinforcing loop.
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Old 21st-April-2011, 07:25 PM   #21
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Sorry, if double post, I'm not sure whether my other post was eaten, or is just being reviewed by the mods or something.


What is good and evil anyway? Is the cat evil, because it kills the mouse and doesn't eat it? Are mammals, as opposed to reptiles good, because they feed their young? Of course not. The question about good and evil arises with morality. The question about whether humans are inherently good or evil is rendered moot, because from a scientific standpoint there is no such thing as good and evil. Morality is essentially about how a society/large group of people functions best. Actions, that work against the functioning of a society are perceived as immoral or evil.

I also believe, that humans naturally do strive for harmony, because everything in the universe tries to maintain low energy, and conflict raises the energy levels. However, when there is scarcity, we must raise our energy levels, in order to acquire that which there is a lack of or a compensation. And that is how conflicts begin: With scarcity.
So even if we were able to live in absolute affluence, a sensation of scarcity is inevitable. Because, as has been pointed out, not every person has the same needs, and it is impossible to fulfill all needs, especially psychological needs, of a human being perfectly. Thus i conclude, that there will always be conflicts, and there will always be some people who simply don't fit in, and have to be constrained in order to protect the majority of the group (i.e. criminals go to jail). Nevertheless, I strongly agree, that the culture and society we live in strongly influences the number of people who will "turn feral". And then again, it's also a question of opportunity. A loving family father can and will turn into a killing machine in the event of war.

I do not condemn a crime in and of itself. I condemn a crime for the effect it has on society.

Is my post understandable?
I think I kind of went off topic as well, please forgive me.
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Old 21st-April-2011, 11:09 PM   #22
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

"artificial" scarcity > causes bad behavior > causes more "artificial" scarcity > causes more bad behavior > causes more "artificial" scarcity > causes more bad behavior > NEGATIVE LOOP

I say "artificial" , because it is only in the mind. (Although INTPs are not prone to it, lots of others are.)

But...After a few loops, it will of course manifest as "real" scarcity and then even INTPness will not protect you from a scarcity mindset anymore.

If there is nothing to eat then even INTPs will canabalize each other for sure.
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Old 27th-April-2011, 08:43 AM   #23
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

What is good and evil? Cats are evil, because it kills mice, do not eat it? Mammals, reptiles, not good, because they feed their young? Of course not. On the question of good and evil and morality...
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Old 27th-April-2011, 11:54 PM   #24
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

good/truth/right is that which stands the test of time and thus is everlasting. new everlasting things evolve. but it will seem as if they have always been. they are like the basic laws of nature

all perishable/non-everlasting things are temporary and are evil/lies/wrong, because they are already extinct in eternal perspective. their appearance was only a small dot in the entire timeline, just a mistake. it will seem as if they never were
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Old 29th-April-2011, 09:28 PM   #25
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

In the context of society, I think most can agree that "good" is allowing other people to pursue happiness and well-being, and to avoid letting the forces under your control to interfere with those pursuits. Evil is of course the opposite.
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Old 1st-May-2011, 02:11 PM   #26
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

It's not that simple. What if the pursuit of happiness/well-being of those others is actually harming you? It does not have to be like that, but scenarios like that do happen.

Can complicate it even more: Sometimes the others dont even know that they harm you. Sometimes they could know, but they just didnt focus on it enough and were blind to it somehow. Are they to be blamed? They cant see everything, they are just human with only a partial sight?


my definition of evil is "a consiousness that has permanently declared all other consiousnesses as the enemy and none as friend, and is unable to ever change that opinion". It thus hates everybody, and thus does all its bad stuff "on purpose" and is to be blamed for it
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Old 4th-May-2011, 08:25 AM   #27
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

It appears that there has been a falling out between Peter Joseph(TZM) and Jacque Fresco(TVP). According to Fresco it is because Joseph wants to be center stage although he doesnt know shit. Pretty interesting...egos are clashing.
" title="YouTube - Jacque Fresco's Criticism of The Zeitgeist Movement" target="_blank">YouTube - Jacque Fresco's Criticism of The Zeitgeist Movement
" title="YouTube - Venus Project and The Zeitgeist Movement split" target="_blank">YouTube - Venus Project and The Zeitgeist Movement split
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Old 4th-May-2011, 02:41 PM   #28
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

I guess you can't have 2 vampires in the same castle?
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Old 5th-May-2011, 01:09 AM   #29
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

I couldn't understand a word that guy was saying. Could someone summarize?
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Old 23rd-November-2012, 12:32 PM   #30
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Default Re: Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

I recently started writing a detailed criticism of the claims on the site of the Zeitgeist movement :
http://antispirituality.net/venus-zeitgeist-movement
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