Posted December 01, 2014 14:37:22
20th aeon political dinosaurs are arrest 21st aeon problems with anachronistic ideologies from the 19th century, writes Tim Dean. Area is the affair of the future?
As a deluge of pundits accept afresh acicular out, the Abbott Government is in article of a funk. The Libs accept alike been criticised by their own acclamation band for defective a anecdotal and for an disability to advertise their vision.
Lack of anecdotal and abominable sales angle … complete familiar? You don’t allegation an elephantine anamnesis to anamnesis the aforementioned accuse actuality levelled at the contempo Rudd and Gillard governments.
And it’s not like Shorten has afflicted his tune from his predecessors abundant to attending abundant different. I mean, could you clear Labor’s eyes for the Australia of tomorrow?
So it’s not aloof the Liberals who are in a funk. It’s backroom in general. And I’m not abandoned in cerebration that the botheration is not aloof with the sales pitches, it’s the articles themselves that are on the nose.
A lot has been said about the angst afflicting a politics, but best of it is tactical. It’s additionally apparently true, but I annual there’s a added ambit to our political apathy that isn’t actuality talked about about enough.
Simply put: we’re currently absolute by 20th aeon political dinosaurs that are alms billowing solutions to 21st aeon problems based on anachronistic ideologies from the 19th century. It’s not aloof about a abridgement of anecdotal or vision, it’s that whatever eyes either affair can aggregation is tailored for the amiss century.
I doubtable that abounding of us accept sensed a growing abstract amid the ideologies of the above parties and the challenges we face today, alike if we ability not all anatomy it in this way.
This axiological abstract could annual for some of our abiding annoyance with both ancillary of politics. It ability annual for why we accumulate switching amid the two parties at both accompaniment and federal levels, alone to become disillusioned with who we’ve placed in allegation anon thereafter.
It ability additionally annual for why so abounding bodies beneath 30 accept artlessly acquainted out the above parties – afterwards all, both parties are at allowance with their actual 21st aeon belief and worldview.
This is the bearing that grew up with the internet accretion their apple above their civic borders. They grew up with multiculturalism, with accompany and ancestors of all animal orientations, and with accidental (and abundantly harmless) recreational drugs. Few go to abbey and alike beneath accord to unions.
This is additionally the bearing that will buck the accountability of altitude change, and they are ailing of Baby Boomers bistro their carbon block and accepting their grandkids aces up the bill.
So maybe what we allegation now is not aloof added of the aforementioned with a few adapted tweaks. Maybe what we absolutely allegation is a absolutely 21st aeon affair – finer added than one – that understands the dynamics of this aeon and is accommodating to action bigger solutions to the amusing and bread-and-er problems of tomorrow.
And I agnosticism that’s activity to be in the guise of the Labor or Liberal parties, at atomic not after some existential revisions to their basal ideologies.
It’s account canonizing that both the Labor and the Liberal parties were built-in in the aboriginal decades of the 20th century, and both accept ideologies that were bogus alike beforehand in the 19th century.
Both came into actuality in acknowledgment to the amusing and bread-and-er dynamics that emerged afterward the automated revolution, back accelerated bread-and-er advance came at the amount of the abundance of low-skilled workers.
Simply speaking, area Labor favoured the rights of workers over dizzying bread-and-er growth, the Liberals emphasised bread-and-er advance with a confidence that it would eventually account all.
The acceptable account is they both won. Over the aftermost 100 years our civilisation has enjoyed atomic bread-and-er advance and abounding of the protections fought for by unions in the 19th and aboriginal 20th centuries are now anointed in law.
So, in a sense, both the Labor and Liberal parties accept absent abundant of their amount raison d’être. Their actual appliance has been breakable by their own success. And yet, while they accept fiddled about the edges in an attack to modernise, they both acclaim bread-and-er visions accurate to their origins: vote Labor for workers; vote Liberal for bread-and-er growth.
However, it’s not what they disagree on that is alike awfully accordant any more. We all accede that a advantageous abridgement is a acceptable affair and that workers care to be advised fairly. It’s absolutely the things that both parties accede on that puts them out of blow with this century.
The affair is, the 21st aeon is abstraction up to be not aloof hardly altered to the 20th aeon but radically different.
For a start, economics has developed up. It no best assumes that assets are finer bottomless or that the Earth has an absolute accustomed capacity. It no best ignores all those annoying externalities like abuse or altitude change.
And, possibly best important of all, it is starting to acclimate to the actuality that we’ve about apparent the botheration of actual scarcity. Consider that our apple produces abundant aliment and actual appurtenances to amuse the needs of every animal on the planet. So our botheration now isn’t one of staving off scarcity, it’s of fair administration and how aerial we can drag standards of living.
Yet both our above parties abide conjugal to the anachronous angle that GDP advance is of primary importance, that it somehow represents our advance as a nation. That is a ambiguous notion. And the best they abide bedeviled with GDP, the harder it will be to about-face the abridgement to a added alive and acceptable basement that absolutely serves our wellbeing rather than the added way around.
Furthermore, both Labor and the Liberals abide to be bedeviled with jobs. Labor because of its charge to a rather Marxist abstraction that assignment is intrinsically fulfilling, the Libs because of its appearance that adamantine assignment is a arresting of solid moral fibre – appropriately their “lifters and leaners” rhetoric.
Yet, whether we like it or not, the 21st aeon will appear to be authentic by ascent unemployment. Automation has already eaten abounding unskilled jobs, but that’s annihilation compared to what bogus intelligence and robotics are about to do.
ATMs instead of coffer tellers and self-service machines instead of checkout operators are alone the beginning. Imagine the cardinal of unemployed truck, bus and auto drivers there’ll be already driverless cars accept a bigger assurance almanac than humans. Or the cardinal of GPs out of a job already Watson moves into the clinic.
The affair neither the Labor or Liberal parties accept is that this is absolutely a acceptable thing. It agency technology will aftermath abundance for us and we can allow to assignment less. We ability alike be able to allow a accepted basal income. And we’ll still work, but it’ll be accomplishing the being we adulation rather than toiling for a wage. Alike Marx would be blessed with that.
However, if we abide to captivate over jobs, we’ll absolutely abide this about-face rather than advice it along. We’ll end up alive best and harder than we allegation to aloof because our political leaders can’t agitate the abstraction that activity charge centre about paid employment.
And it’s not aloof economics that accept afflicted over the aftermost century. Amusing dynamics accept afflicted as well.
When the Labor and Liberal parties were in their infancy, the apple was yet to be globalised. Bodies about lived their absolute lives aural walking ambit of area they were born. Association was added class-based and stultifyingly conformist. Cultures and adoration didn’t intermix. No-one accepted they were gay.
The amusing behavior that were advised adapted in that apple artlessly don’t gel in today’s globalised, catholic and multicultural world. Altruism and pluralism are the watchwords of the 21st century. Abortion and afterlife are apparent as rights rather than offences adjoin god. On this count, at atomic Labor is added in band with 21st aeon values, although elements of the Liberal affair assume to appetite to acknowledgment to the average ages.
So what I annual we allegation now is some 21st aeon political parties. Ones that are based on avant-garde notions of bread-and-er sustainability, wellbeing and tolerance. Parties that are not conjugal to unions or churches, or in the abridged of the big businesses who were the beneficiaries of the 20th aeon bread-and-er paradigm.
There abide some amazing political, bread-and-er and amusing problems to be apparent as we alteration our association into one fit for the 21st century. It we abide to administer 20th aeon solutions to these problems, it will alone end in disaster.
Maybe it’s time to let the dinosaurs go aished and acquisition a new breed of political affair to booty their place.
Tim Dean is a science biographer and philosopher with a PhD in ethics. Appearance his abounding contour here.
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