Official ‘Zeitgeist: Moving Forward’ Discussion
The following documentary is the most important film you could possibly watch. It’s massive implications reach across the globe and cannot be denied. It will change the way you view the monetary system, the economy and the future of this world. Its claims almost sound like conspiracy, but the evidence it intelligently builds upon rules out any chance of that.
And do not be deterred by the 2hr 45 duration. If something is this important, would you really want it to be able to be squeezed into 10 minutes? Let’s cast away our modern 30-second attentions just this once because this is THAT important.
After watching this, I ask you three questions:
1) How convinced are you that these event will occur?
2) Do you think their solution is a plausible? That is, do you think the world will figure things out in time to implement it?
3) What do you think is the first step in solving this problem?
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I saw this post on youtube…
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FOR ALL Those that are itching to do something make sure that EVERY Bill of currency that passes though your hands is stamped or otherwise written on with the words The Zeitgeist Movement believe me, if you HATE TZM after seeing it on 50 percent of ALL bills you would start to notice that it’s no longer a Game. . . The Change is happening right before your eyes! DO IT! STAMP THE MONEY! **RE-POST THIS!!!!**
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Definately must watch!
1) 100%. Look at the individual and companies, then look outside. 10,000 years ago 1% of the worlds biomass was human + domesticated animals. Nowadays its 99%. Everywhere are cities, polution, mass extinction, social problems, economic problems, hyper consumption. I don’t want to participate in this, but as long geopolitics, individuals, scientists and corporations dont hold hands and work on this together as soon as possible, I think we won’t inherit a nice world.
2) Pandora. Humanity will always have hope. And so do I. There are so many positive trends that work towards feeling more interconnected with the world, and with the internet those trends are rapidly growing. If its possible to create a strong, worldwide, probably young people’s movement, you can change the world. (I think we are much more ready than they were in the 60′s)
3) Be the change you want to see. Stop consuming, stop confusing your identity with external objects you bought, go for happiness instead of money, increase your empathy, don’t judge other people, create a movement or join one. Let the world know you have a voice.
Seen it twice, in Amsterdam there was a press release I attended and at the world premiere, and I will watch it a few times more. I know the movement for about 15 months by now and I totally agree with all of it.
1) The financial collapse will for sure happen, there is just no doubt about it. The collapse of the monetairy system is build in and cannot be avoided. For this we must act upon it, because people will get homeless and lose their jobs. People cannot afford what they need and therefor it is higly probable they will get violent, government will try to stop this by answering this with violence through police and military force. This will occur if we just go on as we are doing right now. A third world war is not excluded from this and nobody wants that to happen! I have to say this will happen if people do not understand that we could do much better than we’re doing right now, if they do not understand we have to change the whole system.
2) It will take a lot of effort to put this in practice. A resource based economy isn’t something people come up with if it’s about solving problems as war, poverty and other world problems. I think if there will be no system which is based on the earths resources, rahter than some opinions of business and politcians, we will just all die. I think it’s possible, more and more people are aware of the problems and willing to do something about it. It’s not anymore that people think like “it’s not my problem” cause it’s everyone’s problem. If we stand all together we will find solutions of implementing this for sure!
3) Definitely creating awareness at first. If nobody knows there is a problem, then ‘there is no problem’, but as we all know there are a lot of problems and we know the causes, we must act upon that. That means we really have to act, as Martijn said: be the change! Talk to people, try to get a screening at a theater, at home, at school or anywhere where it’s possible. Have meetings with others. And join the Movement and if there is not another chapter in your region, make one!
I think the first step would be to have a group of people start one of the cities that is proposed at the end of the film. The people would have to agree to forsake money completely and go with the plan 100%. After that they could show the world that the system works, making it the go-to solution when the collapse does happen. The city would be a microcosm of the future global system. I think this is the only way to get this started because it would prove that we can live without the monetary system.
There are already such cities, Auroville (http://www.auroville.org/) for example. I think you need to gradually grow out of the situation you’re in now, you should make it possible for everyone. I don’t think it can work if its not possible for me to do it right now.
So I watched this movie, and as a student of business, I can tell you the majority of this film’s suspected problems as well as solutions to those problems are incorrect, illogical, implausible, or all of the above. While some ideas about human development and politics were interesting. The producers of this film have too much of a warped idealistic view of what scarcity really is.
The film’s understanding of both the domestic economy as well as the global economy of extremely flawed. The narrator has a problem with the efficiency of capitalistic model most of the world has come to accept. If any of the proposed solutions were offered, the economy would inevitably default on itself as well as provide a horrible measure of quality or customer service. Further the film’s understanding of logistics and supply chain management also is completely absent, it’s idea of localized production is so beyond impossible, you would be shocked how much the most simple products and goods would cost. All goods and products would be under such rations that people would experience a mad dash to over pay for the goods they need to sustain normal life.
This film is ultimately socialist, harnessing the idea that each an every human being is entitled to things just because they exist. Sure it’s nice to believe that, but it is not realistic, even on the new identical Earth we’re moving to! Yes, the current state of the world needs a lot of improvement. And there are many things that could be done. But these answers are just ridiculous.
Alright some disagreement! I was hoping for this. First off, Krish, you’re stating that your knowledge from an incomplete undergraduate degree rivals and vanquishes the opinions of season economists. The teachings you have been given are entirely based on the idea that the current system works so it makes sense that this would seem crazy to you. How do you counter the idea that the amount of money in circulation could never account for the amount of debt in the world right now? Or how about the massive overconsumption of the Earth’s resources? Yes this movie talks a lot about the monetary system but the ultimate goal and the reason why it’s so important is to save us from our consumption and waste.
Secondly, did you see the part of the movie where they directly address people who would say that this is a socialist solution? Check 2:12:30 in and you’ll hear why it’s not. All of those -ism’s people like to throw out when they hear about equality are based on the idea that the Earth has infinite resources which it obviously does not.
Thirdly, you honestly believe that each human being is NOT entitled to the same things because they are alive? Then tell me what criteria humans should be judged upon to determine what they deserve. I understand, you’re a business student and you think that because you have a big company that you should have better stuff than other people. Probably because you think that will make you happy? Otherwise why would you want that. At the risk of sounding completely haughty right now, I’m going to say that when you become completely self-actualized, you will realize that happiness comes from helping others, not doing stuff for yourself.
Woo alright that was a bit more heated than I wanted it to be. Sorry Krish! I’m just very passionate about this subject :)
It’s actually interesting. I took note of who was speaking during the segment on the monetary system. If you pay close attention you can see that 80% of the statements are being made by the narrator, who has no credible authority as a “seasoned economist”. Any one resembling an economist for the most part only comments on classical economic text like Wealth of Nations and Goverment Treatsie. Both of which can only been looked at as abstract theory in this day and age.
What students are taught now a days, isn’t so much “this is the way it has to be” but more “this is why things are the way they are”. So it isn’t as much brainwashing as you assert.
To counter that idea is simple. Basically we can know that currency must be controlled and limited by the fed because it is a tangible form and too much of it would lead to inflation and the devaluation of the currency. Debt is intangible so the amount of debt that can be dished out can outweigh the tangible amount of currency. It’s the idea of running firms or organizations (countries) completely on equity or on both equity and debt. With a mixture of the two, organizations are able to finance more operations.
Realistically we cannot really speculate on the “overconsumption of resources” because we don’t really have enough information on the subject. I don’t think anyone can really speculate cause we don’t really understand true strategic motives with earth’s resources. To say that the worlds governments are not actively implementing ideas of sustainable growth would be unethical. But hey who knows…
I noticed that too. They argue that they aren’t socialist, communist or marxist, because they stand in a “in-between stage” But no matter how much they defend themselves as being socialist, they ideas inherently are. And not that socialism is a bad thing. I do happen to agree with the fact that mankind is more motivated to achieve progress through individual incentive (capitalism) versus just being handed everything. It’s a hard to realize for as many people there are that would be excited to pull their own weight, there are many more that are lazy and would let others work for them. Look at beggars in third world countries where unemployment is a big issue, or those who apply for unemployment and disability in the states JUST BECAUSE THEY ARE ELIGIBLE FOR IT. It’s human nature, it doesn’t work as perfectly as economic theory. We aren’t perfect so the world will never be. It’s just entirely too idealistic, like the rest of the film – which causes it to look over realities of what really is.
That is a very haughty statement, because we aren’t debating my personal beliefs here. To state that I’m not “self-actualized” because I don’t agree with the ideas of zeitgeist is absurd. My personal beliefs don’t fall in line with either workings of today’s ideas or the proposed of zeitgeist, nor are they up for debate. Social Responsibility isn’t something I need to be lectured on, but that’s neither here nor there.
It is not up to us to decide what humans deserve. We are not capable of such decisions. Yes it’s nice to believe that we all are the same and deserve the same thing. But I can tell you, from travelling to different corners of the world, that life is very unequal. As you read this on your thousand dollar laptop, in your warm home, there are millions upon millions of people are food insecure, without shelter, and so uneducated that they wouldn’t even understand the topic of this debate. Is that fair? So I turn the same question to you, what criteria were these innocent people judged on to be born on the streets of 3rd world countries? Or into the neighborhoods that breed violence, abuse, and illiteracy?
All good contentions, but I still don’t think I’m wrong by any means in being realistic. I sincerely want to make the world a better place as much as the next guy. But if one is to do that, it is better that one see it as it TRULY is than propose ideas that would leave the world in even more chaos than it already is in.
I don’t mean any disrespect by this next statement. But when watching the film I realized that any one educated on these subjects probably wouldn’t agree with them, however, those who don’t have any past knowledge on these subjects could easily be convinced the comments made in the film are completely accurate when they are not.
I can already tell this argument is going to go nowhere. Our beliefs systems are so different on these topics that we’re just going to continually see holes in each others’ arguments. I’d prefer to call it off now so we won’t hate each other and can still work together, ya? Animosity is the opposite of my goal with this site and these discussions. I guess we’ll see who is right in 2030 eh? Haha I can say with complete sincerity that I hope you are!
It seems to me the whole discussion, if you can call it that, was besides the point. The main point that is very well illustrated in, not just the Zeitgeist movie, but almost everywhere you look is that capatalism is based on consumption. It basically states that if a human being grows up in a capitalist world it will base his identity and his self-worth on external objects that can be bought. It influences us in a way that we see money as the goal and not what we can do with that money. This is the reason why we spend billions and billions of dollars on fashion, cosmetics, gadgets and many more stuff that gives us temporary happiness untill we throw it away. And so, we use finite resources in a way that brings no value in the long run while we could use the same resources for all those people that do not have the basic necessities to even think about what makes them happy.
You should check out behavioural economics to see how biased the materialistic assumption you make are. And maybe check out some anthropology make some more nuanced statements about human nature.
Krish, would you care to elaborate more on where assertions made in the movie are false and what would be a correct way to view these matters, or would that require too much of an in-depth analysis of the entire world basically =)
I’m a complete layman in this field but I do think that common knowledge can show us that we are heading in the wrong direction. The advantages of modern technology are currently being used to increase the gap between the wealthy and the poor, while they have the capacity to make life easier all around. Capital continues to generate more income and capital while the dependency on the labor force is being reduced. And yes you could argue that new fields are continuing to grow, creating more new occupations which can not (yet) be automated. But then, first of all, why should this continue indefinitly? And secondly, a lot of people are simply not suited for complex intelligent labor.
I disagree with the agreeing-to-disagree thing though, A discussion is only useful as long as you disagree and the ‘opponent’ can show you ways to view certain things or come up with arguments you haven’t thought of yourself.
great discussion.. ive been checking out this website for a few weeks now and ive finally decided to jump on in.. thanks jordan for putting the site together.. i love the format, but most of all the content… great job! lets all get High on Existence and hopefully everyone else will want to come with us!
its good to see some differing opinions here. i agree with steven that we should not agree to disagree but further investigate people’s ideas and opinions.. if we cant do it here, then where? we must be open minded enough to change our minds if there is evidence to the contrary. it should never be about winning or losing, but improving our knowledge and wisdom for our future. a quote comes to mind, ‘The only way to change our lives is by changing our minds’ Martin Luther King… sorry, just one more quote, ‘if ignorance is bliss, then wipe the smile off my face’. Zack de la Rocha… in my opinion, thats how people are controlled.. films like this help to make people think, which is a start.
evolution is inevitable and all those who fight against it will become obsolete.. just like the radio cassette player has been replaced by mp3, peoples views also have to evolve… people are dying because of not having access to food, shelter and education while other countries consume so much their citizens actually become fat. if monetary economics doesnt adress this then its flawed by design.
if you want to see how the world debts is going, check out this page, but i warn you, it doesnt look pretty!
Ohhh…I’m new to the site and I don’t want to upset anyone here but I do find myself at odds with what seems to be the majority opinion.
Zeitgeist, where to start. As an initial opener I would start with criticising the production aspects. At over 2 hours this is something which needed broken up into pieces and with intense focus in each piece on specific topics as opposed to the rambling diatribe that is in parts extremely repetitive. This by itself isn’t a major flaw because after all it is not a professional production. Looking at the creator though we see that in fact he isn’t qualified to do any of this and this may explain why so much of the subject matter he discusses is terribly flawed both in its extrapolations and predictions (especially in the field of economics, it is empirical in nature, a semi soft science and not a crystal ball to predict the nuances of what will happen) but often just a basic understanding of the evidence he is examining.
This is an unfortunate trend with the movies. His first movie has been torn apart by people far smarter than I, though I do have some theological and historical knowledge and experience and it is simply a small matter of time to work out that not only does the man not really understand the subject matter but he actually makes up evidence. It should be noted that I am an atheist/Buddhist and have no particular desire to defend Christianity but I do believe in seeking proper understanding and evidence of the subject matter even if I reject its ideas and decry its influence.
(if you are interested this is a reasonable start with just where he went wrong first time around but for a better more comprehensive debate I have some material that I’ll hunt out from a professional historian who lays out a significant amount of textual evidence against the claims made in the movie – also an abject atheist I might add
He follows a trend of most ‘conspiracy theory nuts’ in that they are not content with picking up on the odd conspiracy theory through a lack of knowledge but will attach themselves to many by measure of some form of applied ignorance and avoidance of critical thinking. This can be seen with many of the ‘infowars’ type and truthers.
This is very sad to me because while they are wasting their time and devotion to such abject causes they avoid the real things that are troubling the world. We don’t need to look far to find where the problems in Africa stem from, the vested interests that reside in agricultural farming subsidies are very open about policies like the Common Agricultural Policy and food dumping. Slightly more obscure are the trade deals and other things that go on in and around the poor countries of the world. The best hiding place for evil things is in plain sight, if I had half of the political will and pressure devoted to conspiracy theories I think there could actually be some positive changes in the world.
It is not though, I dare to say, a movement that people are attracted to out of a genuine desire to help people or make a political difference in the world. In Buddhism you come across the concepts of attachment (or trishna) and avidya which is ignorance of reality, or not seeing. Movements within conspiracy theories, religion or politics are something we cling to, we try to become a part of something bigger or to believe in BIG things. It is better to be a part of a group, belief system or believe in something grander and bigger because it is frightening to be small or to realise that reality is quite mundane and problems are quite ordinary. These movements satisfy something within people, they don’t come out of a great exploration of the world and its problems. In fact what we are seeing here is utopian futurism with little basis in research or fact, but that isn’t necessary because it isn’t intellectual. It is a sales pitch, he is selling you his ideas and to give him credit my god he is doing a grand old job.
Some pretty aggressive posting there and some of you may feel I’ve assaulted your positions and been an arrogant SoaB while doing so. If you do feel that way I do apologise and please know it wasn’t done to deliberately offend and if I am wrong I hope we do not live in interesting times and we can all sit around a table and share tea one day.
The Text editor the website is using (whichever wysiwyg editor it is I can’t tell) does not allow for setting a paragraph by using enter. If that is something that can be changed it will make this discussion board a lot easier to browse. It should be a relatively simple fix and if someone does decide to implement it and has problems give me a shout.
Thanks for your input Peter, I like your tone. If you have time, could you comment on my previous post? Because I do think the movie makes some really strong cases against some of the problems and systems we live in now. I don’t agree with much with the solutions either since, also as a atheist/buddhist, I think the picture is by far complete. Have you ever read what Chongyam Trungpa wrote about an enlightened society?
And yes, the paragraph is definately something that has to be implemented soon.
Well I haven’t read that writer though I am familiar with the name so I can’t comment on an enlightened society though I have some ideas about the only ways it would be possible to encourage it I must be brief unless I can find some online version of this text. So much of the rest of this post will be a little bit of a ramble.
In terms of your thoughts on capitalism and how it effects our collective consciousness is interesting. I do disagree with it. In political terms I am something of a voluntaryst, that is to say a philanthropic anarchocapitalist. I do not concur that capitalism itself causes gross materialism but rather there is more to society than the economics. Looking at the history of the corporate world and the expansion of big business, relative incomes, wealth disparities and horrors of the last century there are many common elements that don’t reside necessarily in capitalism or rather we should be more specific about what we mean when we refer to capitalism. Capitalism doesn’t exist as the free exchange of goods and services, it exists in a closed system that is manipulated by various groups such as the state, big business and banks through the state, in a rather uncoordinated way, emergent behaviour caused by an immoral system that shapes it. The best way I can think of to explain this is what happens to vetinarians. They start out loving the job and loving animals but the structure of vet practices forces them to look out for profit and the bottom line and slowly it effects how they do business and how ethically they look at treatments and behaviour. After a time it becomes amazing how these people will act, it is an industry I interacted with for a few years and was disgusted by their behaviour and it soon became apparent how much a system can shape a person and their behaviour.
I greatly enjoy a socialist slant on what led to materialism by the way despite my dirty capitalist leanings, there are some flaws in the video but it illustrates quite a lot in the first part, particularly how big business evolved into the sprawling giant mess it is now:
The root of materialism I believe exists in the statist system particularly schooling and education, not in capitalism and the free exchange of goods but in the state and the big business that influences us through it. One thing we should bear in mind is that the world has never been better, there is more freedom in this century than at any time in the past. Even Africa which is a place I am particularly passionate about as a subject has experience two good decades despite the disasters and wars there is hope for a better future and many countries are stabilising and experiencing growth. With free trade has come less major wars, more exchange of information and ideas and more rights with less prejudice and racism. We talk of changing our society to make it become better, well because of the society we live in we might actually have a shot at breaking some of our shackles.
I think we are naturally cooperative by nature (aka Kropotkins ‘Mutual Aid’) and that the one thing that will really make change in society is freedom, mental, physical and economic.
Of course I do flirt with socialism, my favourite blog is a LibSoc, but then I don’t actually see that much difference in the positions. Ultimately without predicating society on violence people will naturally adapt to whatever it is that makes things work better.
I’m interested in what you would do to bring about an enlightened society? Would it be to encourage more meditation, as this usually helps mitigate the excesses of desire and craving we have.
I think that the final scene is very far-fetched. I do agree that the financial system is headed for collapse, and coupled with the oncoming world-wide energy pinch will cause the greatest civil unrest in a century. How can you argue with 1% of the population controlling 40% of the wealth, and even optimistic estimates of remaining crude oil production set at 25-30 years? The status quo ain’t gonna cut it.
The green-energy and sustainability movements hold the most promise to changing the way we live. Many 3rd world countries are trying to leap-frog the hydrocarbon portion of the energy development track (see the rebuilding of Haiti). These types of renewable energy and sustainability initiatives push against the system of never-ending consumption described by Peter Joseph. These cities described are exciting proposals at moving toward a tangible solution. Granted these cities would have to start on a small scale and earn much success and support to progress to larger scales. These types of initiatives are the most likely solution to sustaining our race. Another great read is “Green Metropolis” by David Owen.
martin – i couldn’t agree with you more. But we aren’t debating my personal belief on these concepts. I was talking about what the movie was suggesting versus why things are the way they are. There are simply things we cannot control. But at the same time there are things we can control. For example, as you said, yes we are bred to be materialistic, but who is it up inevitably up to to be materialistic?
Always good to hear a counter-argument when forming an opinion.
What would prevent the “administrators” in the zeitgeist society from tweaking the allocation computer to fit their needs, much like the rich and powerful manipulate legislation in todays model? Obviously there are huge problems with the global economic system, but can any system/institution avoid human corruption? Even religious institutions (e.g. Catholic Church) have had their fair share of corruption and scandal.
The best things to take from the Zeitgeist film was the initial portion about humans and human development, as well as the final potential layout for a future city.