Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Key Topic - If We Care About "Our People" - Any Comments?

Anthropology and evolution studies the historical process of "making hunters & gatherers, into thinkers and builders." That has obvious implications for the challenges currently facing our Middle Class.

That's been happening since the dawn of time, in pauses & spurts. From hunter-gatherer humans to tribal/cultural humans was only the latest step.

Our biggest, perennial question is, how to keep growing the spurt/digest cycle across bigger aggregates?

We ALWAYS face demand for more thinking, and bigger cultural building ... on a greater scale?

So how we do that? Where do we go from here?

That's a huge topic, yet it just occurred to me that the physiology of sleep is a useful lesson. The physiology of sleep involves multi-tasking, but one function seems to be the review of reality-navigation options.

Basically, an analog network of cells takes in a LOT of information everyday. To navigate unpredictably changing contexts, it has to take time out to re-iterate, digest, review, recognize and SELECT replicable, ADAPTIVE, useful patterns from that data.

Our bodies & brains simply can't keep up with adaptation in real time. Adaptation requires analysis, testing & SELECTION.
[Mathematically, that implies that we're only chasing context, at maybe 1/3 it's rate of change. We can chase by plodding, but never keep up, let alone catch up? There may be some exceptions and advancements, via delegation of interleaved tasks, but that's a topic for subsequent discussion.]
Most histories of humans suggest that we've achieved ~the following in the physiology of humans and the culture of human-aggregates.

1) 5-8 hours/day of USEFUL data gathering (maybe only 2-5, really);

2) 5-8 hours/day of USEFUL inter/intra-person waking review (discourse & thinking);

3) 5-8 hours/day of neural cycling/reviewing/distilling (sleep).

Anything less than that, and individuals & groups stray too far behind the data onslaught, & are labeled as "insane," or aristocrats, Control Frauds, politicians, rogue states, or ... "empires." :)

What's that imply about nations & cultures?
We're just a larger ensemble. Trying to stay sane, on a national, not just a small-group level.

Our net numbers take in full bandwidth data.
Our own actions & interactions throw off all the additional data we need.

So the data regarding adaptive policy-options is always there. Sensing it, and reporting/analyzing/testing/assessing enough of it, fast enough, among one another? That's what is rate limiting for the adaptive agility of any and all groups.

What about our nation as an adaptive group?

All indications suggest that we're spending far too much time haphazardly doing, and not enough time reviewing? At least as a functioning nation-group.

Reviewing comes in - at least - two forms (and likely in a near-infinite, tailing curve of interaction "levels," going all the way back down to molecular & even quantum statistical evolution).

1) reviewing local data in local ensembles (personal thinking, small group discussion)

2) reviewing subsets of national data, in national ensembles (national thinking, national group discussion; of necessarily limited topics)

Multiple questions immediately arise.

For 320 million people, how many levels of review is required, to distill topics and data down to agile segments? (e.g. tactics, strategy, policy, milestone goals, Desired National Outcome)

Perhaps we need to delegate far more decision-making to county and town levels, not just state legislatures, let alone agency bureaucracies?

How do we achieve - and maintain - enough crosstalk between all processes at all levels, to achieve national agility?

I could go on and on, but it's already clear that our whole nation is missing what's perhaps the most pressing question of all. How to train students in K-12 education to even be aware of the most pressing question of all? We need to change K-12 education as fast as economic challenges change. We are obviously NOT doing that right now.

"How to achieve - and maintain, and GROW - net Agility of a growing aggregate?"

If we don't teach context awareness, or Situational Awareness, to a large enough proportion of our students - before they reach voting age - then we obviously can't maintain an informed electorate capable of navigating through unpredictable obstacle courses with adequate group agility.

Suggestion to citizens. Start volunteering at your local elementary schools. NOT, I repeat NOT to do mundane busywork, but to tell students real life stories, and update their situational awareness of where their country is, and where it is going. If upcoming citizens are not far better prepared to be far more involved in updating context awareness, at far higher rates than at present ... then we cannot attain and maintain a functioning democracy. It's that simple.

There is no alternative?

"We know not of the future and cannot plan for it much. But we can ... determine .. what [group, adaptive rate we can express], whenever .. the hour strikes ... ."
Paraphrasing Joshua Chamberlain

Friday, December 13, 2013

Has It Happened? Is This A Call For A Dictator? "Temporary" Of Course!

Two recent articles seem to have passed under the radar screen of most mass media in the USA. Yet they're the kind of "calls to action" that Wall St. financiers can get behind. Like the early support from foreign investors for, say, Mao, Tojo, Hitler, Stalin and Lenin, just to name a few. We could add a long list of smaller actors too, from Pinochet to Quisling, all supported by "business interests" interested more in business than in the general welfare of the people of their respective countries.

Should we worry about the following calls for action? Should we at least discuss them widely, and ensure that more than just the input from "investors" is represented? What is - for us - different this time is that it is the USA itself that is the target of the latest call to action and "intervention."

You can read these articles for yourself.

David Brooks and FRANCIS FUKUYAMA seem to be in agreement that we have a problem.
“So we have a problem.”
Do we, though? Or are we the problem?

If it's us, then making one of us a temporary dictator seems to be grasping at straws.

James Madison and the other Framers of the US Constitution thought long and hard about what had been written about the fall of all prior republics and democracies. They foresaw what we're now facing, called it "factionalism" and said that the best way to forestall it's development was to form a more unique form of government than had come before, one with MORE, not fewer, checks and balances.

Fukuyama calls that a "vetocracy." Greater minds, 200 years ago, called it what it was precisely intended to be, institutional checks and balances.

In addition, the framers of the Constitution also explicitly cautioned us that it will always be the character of our people, not the peculiar form of our government institutions that get us through national challenges.

So my suggestion would be to revise the character of our people first, and be more selective about whom we send as representatives to our national Congress ... before we consider weakening the checks and balances that got us this far.

If Ben Franklin were here today, he might scoff at calls for more power, and repeat his famous "table talk" about shaving something from all planks in order to join the parts together into a enduring piece of furniture. He might then go on to ridicule calls for a sledgehammer to smash the furniture, if one faction felt it was taking too long to produce something in their narrow interest.

It'll take a bigger intellect with a more reasoned argument than calls for unlimited emergency powers to make me acquiesce to temporary dictatorships, one faction at a time. That sounds more like a return to the old thinking that held sway before the US Constitution was written, when government of the people, by the people and for the people hadn't yet taken hold, and the ancient device of despots calling for more power was recognized as leading to national insanity.

Fukuyama argues that "We need stronger mechanisms to force collective decisions." Surely he jests? By definition, a collective decision is not one that is forced. As Walter Shewhart and W.E. Deming lamented for decades, an ounce of prevention and preparation speed the quality, not just the tempo, of distributed decision-making - far more than any attempt to repair the process after the development of the actors.

If dictatorships were so valuable, surely the USMC would also be calling for them on the battlefield, rather than going the opposite direction, and also acknowledging the enduring superiority of improving the quality (including tempo) of distributed decision-making. That kind of quality comes only from preparing and developing the character of the people involved, not in trying to force unqualified people through chattle-chutes of imaginary quality. The path that Brooks and Fukuyama dream of has led only to collective disaster, albeit temporary gain for individual looters.

Fukuyama goes on to mention multiple points of personal frustration, in a manner reminiscent of all people who have yearned for simple dictatorships. He wraps it all up with what is itself a peculiar claim.
"Whatever the reasons, the American state has always been weaker and less capable than its European or Asian counterparts."
Personally, I predict that that particular statement will produce more surprise, laughter and outright indignation than agreement from Americans. If not, then I truly don't know my country.

Predictably, Fukuyama then trots out the bogeyman of regulation, both it's absolute magnitude, various distributions, and methods of development. Having built several premises, i.e., that there IS a problem, that said problem is embedded in our very institutions, he now asks credible readers to wrap those presumptions around what "everybody knows," i.e., that there's too much regulation. Of Wall St, presumably?

At this point, I sincerely do hope that most credible readers are, indeed, laughing. Yet what Fukuyama is toying with is not a laughing matter. Tojo would have approved of his underlying message, even if he chafed at the slow, political correctness of it's delivery. If nothing else, you have to credit Brooks and Fukuyama for working so hard at what is, at heart, an incredibly simple and ancient message. "Give us the Goddamn Power! NOW!"

Finally, Fukuyama unravels his own case by making the mistake of exposing a simpler solution to his entire thesis.
"Thus, conflicts that in Sweden or Japan would be solved through quiet consultations between interested parties through the bureaucracy, are fought out through formal litigation in the American court system."
Fine. Delegate more of the tactics and strategies that now masquerade in Congress as National Policy, and get Congress, SCOTUS and the POTUS the heck out of tactics, and back in matters of true policy, national goals and Desired Outcomes for the nation ... where they belong.

For that, you don't need a dictator. Shoot. You don't even have to strengthen the Presidency. Just improve the quality of distributed decision-making, by investing more in the character development of all citizens? What a concept! Again, Fukuyama shoots his own argument in the foot, by overdeveloping it's lopsided armaments.

[PS: Note that Fukayama conveniently does NOT review all the failures of every other form of government worldwide, during the time course of the events he laments in the USA. Japan? Right. Nothing has happened in the last 70 years of THEIR government's history. His oratorical arguments lack the barest of required statistical controls. His arguments wouldn't receive any attention at all in any scientific debate. Indeed, they receive attention only for the dangers they present to an electorate challenged with responsibility for reasoned and logical discourse.]

Nevertheless, Fukuyama drones on and on about various cases, each time imaging tactical issues that he's presumably conditioned readers to see a Strengthened POTUS as the solution to. He even mentions the current mess of financial regulation, but not how elegantly the same issue - and effective responses - were developed back in the 1930s. We didn't bother strengthening the Presidency back then. Why now?

While it's unstated, the underlying, fantastical premise is that the ONLY rational solution for a Congress filled with micro-managers is to have a POTUS free to veto each and every inappropriately micro-managed Congressional gambit?

That's not the way the Framers of the Constitution saw it. Even though Fukuyama's essay mentions and discards James Madison's comments, there is nothing of substance in Fukuyama's essay that wasn't more fully developed by James Madison et al, first in the Virginia Plan, then in the Congressional Convention leading to the actual signing of the Constitution, and on to it's initial amendments. [Madison's actual notes on this process are fascinating, and little read by our 320 million citizens of today.]

The solution that the Framers saw as a better way, was to maintain the quality of the American electorate, and charge THEM with preventing the development of an incompetent class of politicians in all three branches of the newly designed government.

I see no further use in belaboring all the remaining points Fukuyama or Brooks trot out in their call to action. Rather, I'll close with a simple point.

The easiest way to form a vetocracy of the type they fear, is to populate ANY form of government with irresponsible people unfit for the task at hand.

Rather than trying to create a fool-proof formula for protecting ourselves from the Idiocracy they fear, isn't the simpler, and more scalable solution to instead invest in the quality of people we send as representatives to any form of government? And to do that by developing an electorate capable of selecting better quality representatives for themselves.

No Child Left Behind? How about no Democracy left behind, by leaving no citizens behind?

Personally, I don't see any other way. If Fukayama and Brooks are right, then we could engineer institutions so idiot proof that we could populate them with the proverbial 500 monkeys with typewriters, and then just sit back to wait for the guaranteed results.

There is a better way.

"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance: And a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."
James Madison to W. T. Barry, 1822

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Statistically Significant Practice Of Democracy: The Adaptive Culture Cup Challenge For Context Nomads, and Teaching Citizens To Think.

This essay was prompted by yet another advertisement that both cracked me up, and also unleashed the stream of reform. Here's raising a cup to those who pave the way.

Consider the following ad.

"Live well, Live Green [buy a printed book]"
For 200K years, the answer has been "talk to people," right?

For 3.5 Billion years, the answer has been "interact," right?

So what is this ad really referring to, in what context? For what reason?

Living? That's a life-process, for individuals and groups.

Green? That's a sustainability-through-extended-maintenance efficiency concept - about extended life.

Printed book? That's a static repository of fixed observations, usually raw data plus notes about a few data-interdependencies.

Yet what are the real boundaries and substance of the data "store & hold" matrix that these concepts reveal? When presented with such ads, all kids face the same dilemma, and eventually ask the same questions, in fumbling ways, depending on age and background.

Basically, as soon as all concepts being discussed are wrapped in a single matrix - i.e., a recognized situation or context, then kids can't help sensing - and maybe voicing - questions about the matrix itself.

Where did we come from, and why?

Where ARE we, anyway?

And where are we going next?

And why. Why? Why? Why? Why? [SETA: search for extraterrestrial answers to kids questions. The genesis of all religions?]

Even some adults retain this natural inclination, if it hasn't been "successfully" trained out of them, in their typical dinosaur race to become uselessly over-adapted to one, transient context.

When considering the questions that kids ask (when protected and left to their own, imagination, especially if it's actually nurtured, and not beaten, "educated" or otherwise "trained" into arbitrary prejudices and biases) - several answer patterns frequently appear.

A large % of the stuff implicitly described/learned/used ... is never explicitly written down! (usually more than 70%?)

Another large % of the stuff written down ... is written down by people who never use it anyway. [Go figure!]

Most of the stuff that actually, unpredictably gets done ... is done by people who do a little of everything, while "everything" keeps changing?

But where does that leave us? In a system that no member can fully understand?

There obviously is a "way," since we're here, after 3.5 Billion years ... but it can NOT be written down as a static message that most people can use, regardless of how many rules-based systems we cycle through when trying to describe change.

Sisyphus pushing Budda up a Tao finally learned that no static rules are Sufi_cient? :)

How do we finally discern the "sufi" in what's "transiently necessary" as opposed to what's "enduringly sufficient?" By neural tuning of repeated, sensory-triggered patterns? Upon reflection, every reactive or agile system ideally requires every supposedly static component to in actuality be an agile, reactive unit displaying degeneracy.

Like system components, system interdependencies (aka, "rules") in an agile system must also display degeneracy if that system is to "stay in the race" for very long. In short, the necessarily tuned rule is not an absolute rule, only a dependent probability function. Again, go figure!

Systems, pre-human and human, have obviously evolved, and aren't stopping yet. So we ALWAYS have a challenge: to quickly & simple describe the source, the current state and the next-steps of our developing population.

Selecting which of many aggregate, composite steps is THE next systemically adaptive aggregate step, from any given state, is the fun part of existing.

How do we prepare and encourage kids to solve that challenge, and enjoy every part of it?

There are no easy answers, but here are a few observations and thoughts.

Observation. A growing system's net operation can only be described in terms of past/present/emerging dimensions that 99.9% of people never get anywhere near enough practice describing, thinking about or manipulating - in every day activities. Unless, that is, they stay proportionally involved in personal, regional and national policy - and thereby maintain statistically significant practice of democracy.

Observation. A growing human system can only evolve through maintenance of full-group practice/observation/discourse as a navigation process?

Yet what moving target are we chasing, and what changing obstacle course dimensions are we navigating through?

If target-location and obstacle-course-dimensions are both constantly changing ... then there's nothing we can write down fast enough to solve everything.

Therefore our navigation process has to be constantly weighted towards discovery of emerging dimensions of obstacles to navigate or steer past.

Individual organisms initially evolve through natural selection from prior, diverse sets of individuals. Social species also evolve, through natural selection from diverse models, known as cultures, presently organized into nation states.

Ongoing development of each human cultural evolution model is aided by constantly referring to and updating an evolving navigation guide, i.e., from a given culture's net body of cultural knowledge, practices and discourse. To remain relevant, that navigation guide requires continuously interleaved stages of discovery/editing/re-writing - reinitiated in roughly that order. Obviously, the proportion of net group and individual time applied to each interleaved stage must float, as fleeting situations dictate?

Surely that reference model can be absorbed by all ten year old humans. In fact, we can do even better, and it's long past time to do so.

Walter Shewhart famously said (80 years ago!) that "Data is meaningless without context."

Really, Walt didn't go far enough! Our conceptual hole is actually deeper than that.

"Data - and paradigms too - have no enduring relevance, without context path!"

In the end, even redneck stock car racers realize that no one gets brownie points for being #1 in every process that may or may not even be needed in each pit stop. There's a bigger goal - one that requires staging, linking and sequencing of multiple contexts for some longer term purpose.
Our cultural race never ends, and every context is simply a pit stop.
So why do so many preening capitalists strut around bragging about their quarterly results? They're stupid for taking their eyes off our moving, cultural prize. And we're just as stupid, for pausing to watch current capitalists in their mindless action.

Their entire paradigm is only randomly connected to our long term requirements! That's an inescapable corollary to the observation of evolution itself. The unassailable reality is that we are charged with navigating through a "context path" where the details of each and every successive context, as well as their rate of arrival, are entirely unpredictable. We want dynamic cultural options, not just instantaneous, static results! The two vary independently, but one always serves the other.

Results are simply the dimensionless "currency" which we denominate our increasing options with. Today's results are yesterdays loose change, most are soon discarded, and all are soon just incidental to new options.

Results are meaningless without option paths. 

Where can we go from these results?

For every year and every generation of humans, data, paradigms and results will always be meaningless without not only context awareness - or Situational Awareness, if you prefer - but context path.

In short, we remain Context Nomads, migrating between transient contexts. All that's changed is that context change is - for now - no longer dominated by geography, at least not here on planet Earth. Yet the progressions of unpredictable contexts certainly didn't stop. Rather, our awareness of the dimensions of the personal and aggregate context changes we're experiencing have simply lagged.

So what is actually relevant and enduring about all this? Is there anything here that we can use to update and refine our Cultural Navigation Manuals for all 10 year olds?

How about this notion. There is a 3-step challenge that every ten-year old can easily grasp, with only minimal practice, without even bother to call it Set Theory.
Kids in ancient nomad cultures absorbed this lesson effortlessly, before learning to walk. 
You can still quickly demonstrate this to kids in a wide variety of past/present/future, simple card games, to drive the point home.

Challenge Level 1: Gather data and recognize patterns of data that reveal interdependencies in a given context (end of your nose, here & now). Local Survival Navigation in Dimension Level N.

Challenge Level 2: Gather data-pattern harmonics and recognize patterns that reveal process interdependencies (end of your nose, over extended context). Local Survival Navigation In Families of Dimensions.

Challenge Level 3: Gather data-sub-pattern harmonics and recognize sub-patterns that reveal multi-process interdependencies beyond end of your nose, over multiple, successive contexts). Agile, Navigation-Upon-Demand, Through a multi-Context Obstacle Course.

How does complexity of that obstacle course vary? It gets more complex, simply as an exponential function of our own numbers and characteristics AND our own rate of change! Not to mention any outside sources of change. We have to constantly practice, just to stay in the Cultural Game. That's why play behavior is literally EVERYTHING!!! That discussion, however, is for another time.

In the meantime, if those simple challenges can be consolidated into a Culture Cup Challenge that student's can aspire to continuously vie for, surely it would provide a better outlet for growing individual and group intellects than does our present spectrum of competitions for static assets, sex, drugs and rock&roll?

Screw the Sprint Cup, Davis Cup and even the America's Cup! We have bigger cups for our group intellects to pursue! The Adaptive Culture Cup.

Friday, December 6, 2013

What is Homo Sapiens going to DO with itself? Rates of Exploring Local-vs-Aggregate Options ... and the Fate of Nations.

To answer that, let's first look at a seemingly unlikely context.

Amsterdam Gives Alcoholics Beer to Clean City Streets

And then range up to analogies, such as "USA gives sociopaths power ... to "clean up" social interdependencies."

Before delving too deep, too quickly into taboo subjects, lets practice on the one with less implications. Beer.

I don't know how widely this particular issue was discussed in Holland, but it opens a small, useful window exposing a view of group policy-development methods. Isn't that a window all citizens should look through more often?

It's a bubbling, boiling topic. In the particular case of beer, we've come full circle in the past 100 years, first to Prohibition, then to the opposite extreme. We bounced all the way from tolerance limit to the other. Is there a way to spend more time near whatever intermediate zone is safer?

You have to immediately wonder just how many times throughout history this - and similar - social experiments have been conducted, the results noted - or not - and eventually completely forgotten all over again!

Does that sound familiar, or what? 

It's largely a number problem. Lets say that ~24 grandparents had to learn some lessons the hard way, and that to many of the ~48 or more parents either forget, or never learned those lessons. Can we minimize how many of the ~100 or more grandchildren have to relearn too many of those painful lessons - starting from scratch? With growing numbers of grandchildren involved, maintaining adequate affinity, motivation, interactions, coordination and Group Intelligence becomes a increasingly distributed task, with no simple policy fix possible. It can get ugly ever 3 generations or less, if there's no brewmaster tending the fermenting brew. If we are both brew and brewmaster, how do we tend ourselves to get a better brew, and not keep losing whole batches?

At heart, the sweeping Amsterdam beer policy, is an extension of what EVERY merchant lobby drifts into working towards. That is: merchants lobby to get policy tilted toward favoring THEIR product. And electorates look for ways to accommodate the endless sea of wheels squeaking to different extents.

Why do merchant sectors lobby? Why do electorates accommodate given patterns of merchants, to given extents, at different times?

Merchants lobby because bureaucratizing access to their product, as a policy ... inevitably opens options for shifting (& stabilizing) the spectrum of it's REAL price point (i.e., relative to other current & emerging static/dynamic assets).
Thereby, anyone in that and dependent industry sectors tend to ASSESS that policy development as "improvement" (for them).

That is the temptation that creates the phenomenon of Control Frauds, as the culmination of unchecked, Innocent Fraud.

Yet what does it mean for net Adaptive Rate of the "more perfect union" all citizens are supposedly pursuing? Electorates end up accommodating troublesome Control Frauds too long, precisely because of confusion. Re-tuning a complex system is far more difficult than the simple, local acts that can screw them up!

Is a group's NET development rate decreased, stalled, or increased by enshrining certain decisions in bureaucracy policy? By simple statistics, degradation is dramatically the norm, and required investment in CAREFUL regulation is always increasing, never stabilizing or decreasing. 

National self -regulation is rarely, if ever, a significant problem. Lack of self-regulation is the perennial, #1 problem keeping us from reaping the insane return-on-coordination.

How can we re-tune our changing system? Well, that always depends entirely upon context first of all, ultimately including how well the NET impact of the chosen context-response is ASSESSED by that electorate. Hoard, horde, lord knows we've all seen disastrous policies maintained for decades ... by squeaky wheel "elites," or even because of our own ignorance, in the person or the aggregate. Often we can't generate successful responses, or can't do so soon enough even once we realize what the solution is. There are many processes which sometimes seem at odds, not just the heart and the mind.

If you sample feedback from additional sectors, and plot them into a response spectrum ... how many lobbyist sectors or individuals approve or disapprove of a given policy change, how vehemently, and for what reasons?

Hmm, this example looms as one reflection of a bigger, more systemic need. How DO we the people actually assess where our policies are leading us?

Our reality is that we have to find solutions to that complex question.

There is no point of seeming stability that is not a dynamic equilibrium between conflicting forces. Get over it.

Further, there are no adaptive paths in the natural world that are not maintained as dynamic equilibria between an endless history of opposing factions! Get over that too!

There's always at least two, even bigger questions. Where are WE going from here? And HOW are we gonna get enough of us there, soon enough to matter?

The second question we've already answered. Rather haphazardly, obviously!

The answer to the first question is a neverending, and unpredictable. Simply put, there is always an even better way. If we don't find it. Some other nation will.

Meanwhile, we are ALWAYS putting far too much policy power in far too few hands.

Then we haphazardly select "leaders" to wield that delegated power.

Then we haphazardly select methods for developing, training and assessing criteria that define leaders. Any sociopath in a nice suit, with an expensive hairdoo?

They may be sociopaths, but they're OUR sociopaths?

All of them? When do their very numbers get in the way of OUR net progress?

Is zero tolerance for ALL frictions a viable option? No. We adequately documented, millennia ago, that recombination outstrips isolation or active reduction. Cultural recombination builds on sexual recombination. It's messy, but leaves all other methods in the dust.

Is accommodating ALL frictions a viable option? Also no. There's a huge gulf between too much selection (over-adaptation to one, fleeting context) and no selection at all. Those extremes have been documented as survival tolerance limits.

Natural selection is the survival path through that gulf. Finding the most adaptive balance between those two tolerance limits - over time & contexts - defines ongoing success. Obviously, it demands massively parallel, combinatorial sociology.

That sounds daunting, but truly amazingly, we can do this. Damn. We are GOOD! It's just that we can do even better, and must. Yet ONLY if we embrace the audacity of having the insane amounts of fun it involves, to commit to working on that together. Valhalla exists. It's just that we don't go there just to fight. Rather, we send our offspring as delegates, to emulate AND THEN EXTEND the fun we keep building. You got a better idea? If not, then ramp up the party!

So just how far down the path the Dutch have taken, can we all go, and in which combinations, nay ongoing permutations?

Now that we're all drunk on audacity, let's just jump right over some prior taboos.

Shall we just give all our sociopaths nice suits to pontificate in? Civilian as well as military? With hordes of trainee journalists to hang on their every word, and take photos?

Wow! To do that, we'd clearly need to reassign our best choreographers, to help stage, link and sequence presentable ways to work - just well enough - WITH a just-adequate sampling of our own squeaky wheels.

Why would we want to do that? In order to accommodate their addictions with cheap prevention instead of expensive repair of the NET mistakes they "lead" us into?

How far could we take this process? It will ALWAYS remain a group art .... until some new permutation of art becomes unpredictably enshrined as a documented principle of scalable science. We'd be going from analogous "givens" like selective chemo-taxis, to selective resource-taxis. The same behavioral principle, just expressed on a different scale, with uniquely scale-dependent methods.

Forget par-allel evolution. We're witnessing scale-allel evolution. Analogous principle, but expressed on a completely different scale. Personally, I doubt we'll progress as a nation, until every student learns such perspectives by age 10, so that they can move onward from their parent's obsolete contexts, not just over-study details irrelevant to our emerging resource-taxis demands.

How far can we go with more scalable versions of the Dutch approach? Right now, only as far as our un-coordinated, industry-sector lobbyists, and their paymasters? Remember that the commonly expressed goal of capitalism is blindly sequestering real resources from your growing community, by constantly promoting a higher real-price-level for your particular product. "Hey re-source. Hey re-source. Hey re-source." The mating call of the rank capitalist.

The part they miss is that there's a hidden refrain, detected only by those with an ear for their groups NET or aggregate refrain. Net or Group Capitalism, like other subsets of biology and thermodynamics, simultaneously reflects the ADAPTIVE SUM of all individual and aggregate drives to explore ever more options. The aggregate result, over time, is that our growing chorus line drifts into organizing on an even greater scale. By the statistics of accumulation alone.

It's true that at any time, the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. That happens right up to the occasional point where rich and poor once again trip over the fact that they can all get richer than any imagined ... by working together, insteading of stealing from one another. After a round of cooperation, they set about looting the perceived excesses from one another. The better way is to fully invest that excess in ALL of our offspring. That's how we got it in the first place!

Obviously, local competition is not all that's happened in history - although the typical, under-educated capitalist will deny it. By hook or crook (pun intended), even the most narrow-minded pirates eventually work together to pursue a greater return-on-coordination. Usually only after they trip over it once too many times.

So - jumping ahead - perhaps at the present time, our best challenge to tackle might be getting the entire spectrum of political lobbyists to put their heads together, in order to provide their best ASSESSMENT of how random policies will ripple out through all the inter-dependencies currently carefully tuned to code in our complex democracy.

Obviously, they'd rather not have to face that responsibility! To survive, however, we have to make enough of both them, and us, face that truth. If the question of responsibility isn't asked, it's far easier for them to rationalize, and to take the money and run, and for us to let them do so. Whether Active Frauds or Innocent Frauds, do we EVER need people that run from all duty to nation?

So how DO we get all industry sectors, and the lobbyists they mob Congress with, to actually use their heads, collectively, rather than ONLY in mock isolation?

The implications cascade all the way back to Kindergarten, to pre-natal care, and to EPA and all other policy functions. Human culture is a frog that can easily boil itself, before it knows which direction it's net options are heading.

Like General Patton, I am NOT going to prejudice anyone - or constrain their thinking - by trying to suggest HOW this will be done. I'm just suggesting this as a plausible, Desired Outcome. We need all of us to participate, uninhibited, if we're to act smarter than any subset of us.

What I will suggest is that we need more recruitment platforms. Many more of them. So that we can quickly recruit an adequate fraction of citizens to provide patient feedback, and engage in adaptive POLICY, not just tactical discussions. If we want to get away from "Ready, Fire, Aim," then we need to find ways to get people together, so that they can at least start hearing everyone's ideas on how to aim first.

Meanwhile, all populations grow, and spawn MORE sectors, with each spawning it's LOCAL assessment system. Our aggregate task gets MORE complicated daily, even while we sit still, slowly boiling and growing into a dissociated mob instead of a coordinated whole that is more, not less, than the sum of it's parts. Like it or not. We are distilling ourselves. What fraction are we selecting to distil? And why? If we get enough people to address those two questions, the "how" always follows their consensus, incidentally, as Patton noticed, and many before him.

Key Problem:
With increasing numbers, how do we constantly reconstruct a newer, AGGREGATE ASSESSMENT method, to chase the rate of spawning new factors which complicate our net assessment task?

Fast enough to matter?

In other words, how do we Scale Democracy, including it's Minimal Adaptive Tempo?

That's a tough problem to start with, and it's made harder by neglect. It's usually the LAST thing discussed, and then usually rejected on the grounds of obsolete tradition. The Aggregate can't do that because some components would have to adjust ... what they've "always?" done ... since the last time they made adjustments? Past experience suggests that we first approach these taboo subjects through patience and humor, since it involves goading people we like into actions they don't yet see the need for. Humor helps.

Even among the Dutch, is this particular step - in this case, mitigating mundane alcohol addiction - viewed as anything less than damage control within fractions of an otherwise frustrated, bored population who'd rather have access to bigger net options worth assessing? You'd have to be there to know for sure, and to assess the emerging options.

Our big issue, quite frankly, is "What is Homo Sapiens going to slowly DO with itself?"

Are we going to FIND & succeed at new challenges worthy of applying our exponentially increasing talents to?

And, even given consensus Desired Outcomes, how vigorously are we going to try to SELECT success, by optimally trimming the differences between LOCAL ASSESSMENTS and NET ASSESSMENTS? How will we know if we as a people are making progress, or not?

If past biology is any indication, those questions will be explored in regional enclaves (call 'em nations or not).

The first enclave that figures out a faster/leaner/better way to explore more options per-unit-time than the rest of us are doing ... will cull the rest of what was Homo Sapiens. Just like we culled Neanderthal, Denisovans, chimps, gorillas .. and all other competing primates.