commentary by Roger Erickson
If you don't know tactics from strategy/policy/goal/operations, you're part of the problem. With neither situational awareness nor operational awareness, we're reduced to tactics masquerading as national goals. Instead of policy staff discussing staging, linking & sequencing of economic maneuvers in our complex economic situations, we see idiots spouting gay marriage and abortion as key national priorities.
In that setting, the following statement says a lot, but nowhere near enough.
"The eventual outcome would fulfill John Maynard Keynes’ dream of an international currency system in which both creditors and debtors share responsibility for maintaining stability."
The Tragedy of the European Union and How to Resolve It - George Soros
Keynes had a great perspective on economic operations, but he went off the rails at the goal and policy level. Personally, I must completely disagree with Keynes' vision of an international currency system. That's as maladaptive as envisioning one, inter-physiological blood supply and blood type for all people. To maintain a high adaptive rate in any complex system, we must accelerate concurrent, multi-level selection at all levels of our increasingly distributed decision-making. In overly simplistic terms, we need competitive cooperation everywhere, in order to adapt - and that certainly includes preserving a selection market between sovereign nation models.
The most important thing anyone trained in any sort of systems science can do with the rest of our lives is help all professions share a deeper appreciation for our nation and culture as a system. Human culture simultaneously displays the most complexity and adaptability of any culture in history. Excessive cultural homogeneity hinders adaptive rate, and is suicidal. Even transnational currency homogeneity would be suicidal. The eurozone's experiment with currency union preceding political union is only one case in point. It is a dead-end, and tempo counts more than they know. They will never recover the lost output from destroying their own creditor regions.
There are many research areas that understand these insights well, from different perspectives and using different jargons. Yet all of these disciplines are becoming progressively more useless to their own culture, through professional isolation. That's how so many, diverse, brilliant researchers end up working for and at the whim of policy knuckle-draggers like Karl Rove. It's a tragedy of epic proportions.
Results in most systemic research areas - from biology to military campaigning - are already stockpiled in excess of public utility. The public utility of these research efforts are actually declining, through isolation, and are largely relegated to endeavors supporting throughput of only trivial amounts of public initiative.
That's a tragedy because we know that initiative, whether individual or public, cannot be saved. It is either used well, or wasted well. Let's not waste it. Members of a social species cannot become so separated from their neighbors as to break social bonds we cannot live without. Loss of our return on coordination - while still scaling up the cost of coordination that comes with any and all forms of growth or development - only cuts off our face to spite our nose. It is mindless folly. If we cannot study and maintain our nation-wide connectivity, we cannot survive - no matter how much individuals know in isolated. Our constant goal is a more perfect union, able, through accelerating coordination, to compound the value and capabilities of our individual citizens. OpenSource is just a method that should be a universal, automatic stabilizer.
An evolving culture survives selective pressure through increasingly systemic adaptive response rate. If you work in any system science, please use your head to help your country, not just your transient pocketbook. We can only do that by keeping our colleagues close, and our Luddites even closer. None of us will continue to see further for very long, if we can't keep our Luddites alive long enough to stand on their shoulders. The best investment is always in faster adaptive rate in our democracy. Why aren't there investment vehicles expressly for that purpose? There are, of course, but they simply aren't yet currency accessible. I would challenge audacious youth nationwide to invent ways for all citizens to invest in more scalable democracy, faster/leaner/better.
Citizens don't let citizens be boiling frogs. We need optimal utilization of all of us.