The Idea of Open-Source Politics and Crowd-Sourcing Leadership


PeopleOverProfitFlickruserAericans4FinancialReform-150x150

http://www.mediaroots.org/open-source-politics-an-inquiry-into-the-crowdsourcing-of-leadership/

The hallowed halls of a once respected US government are now filled with the hollow promises of an impotent governing class. In a political landscape riddled with indecision, political pageantry and growing despotism, the people are hungry for a leadership that represents them. Instead, we are faced with a corporatocracy – one hellbent on the consolidation of wealth and power rather than the proliferation of freedom and justice.

Believe it or not, there was a time when representative government worked on behalf of its people, but those days have long succumbed to the political distortions of misguided leadership. Thus, the age old questions remain: If it is possible to revitalize the self-governing power potential of the ‘We the People’, then what might be a viable alternative or how might we augment the current system to provide the proper infrastructure for a change of guard? Perhaps by looking to the revolutionary ideas of the internet and the co-creative force of its users and developers we can begin to find answers to those difficult questions.

One of the groundbreaking ideas that the internet has provided is that of open-source development, which promotes the universal access to a product’s design as well as redistribution of that design. This developmental model set by programmers and software developers exemplifies the highest order of free trade, and serves to utilize the best ideas for the overall benefit of the system. If we are to apply a similar model as the framework for government, we begin to see parallels between open-source programming and the ideas put forth by America’s founding fathers.

Unfortunately, the fundamental ideology of the US political system has been absent from view for quite some time. The growing disconnect between the people and their representatives has led to a lag in public representation, thus resulting in a severe lack of people’s interests and ideas being properly expressed by US legislation and leadership.

A recent example of this contrast is illustrated in the debate over the legalization of marijuana, where an overwhelming public support for legalization has not been echoed by the government, nor the legislation regarding the issue. However, the ‘War on Drugs’ is only one of many examples which illustrates the delay we are experiencing in our current democratic process.

In a world where efficiency and speed are essential to human progress, it’s unfortunate that our legislative powers have become cumbersome and inefficient. However, the internet’s crowd-sourcing concept could provide us with the possibility to facilitate some level of autonomy, where the average individual has the ability to exercise their right to self-representation.

The idea of crowd-sourcing was first referenced by Jeff Howe of Wired magazine, and can be best understood as the purposeful re-appropriation of resources for achieving a particular goal by an indeterminate group of individuals.  Much like open-source programming which relies upon a multitude of contributors, so too does crowd-sourcing rely upon the involvement and contributions of the collective.

There are many examples of crowd-sourcing being used throughout the internet today.  Chemists have crowd-sourced protein folding techniques, YouTube has done so with entertainment, Facebook with different language versions of it’s site, while politicians and artists alike have crowd-sourced funding for their campaigns and projects. If this is a successful tool for science, entertainment and finance, could it also be possible to crowd-source political leadership?

Endless possibilities could present themselves once we focus the “spare processing power of millions of human brains” towards the evolution of political representation. For example, a truly participatory system could unfold which no longer relies upon single individuals to represent the will of many, but instead allows all people to become micro-leaders in a process of collective representation. Although this idea may seem farfetched, it’s not far from the framework that helped to build this country’s political system.

The founding fathers believed that public office should be held by its citizens, to act as contributors as well as beneficiaries in a collective effort to provide society with a fair and just governing body. As we continue to evolve socially and intellectually, it’s the hope that our leadership would incorporate the enlightened ideas of the past as well as those that propel us into the future. If they don’t, ‘We the People’ can and will find ways to represent ourselves through active participation in the political process.

As more and more people wake up to the corruption of the current system and the lack of political reflection on a federal level, passive acceptance of oligarchical rule will end, soon to be replaced by an active contribution in the political progress of this country, and ultimately, the world.

Written by Justin Blush for Media Roots

You can Follow @Justin_Blush on Twitter

Justin writes for Media Roots News with Abby Martin and you can read more of his content at mediaroots.org

You can also follow the Wax Blog by clicking the link at the bottom of the page.

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-Alan Watts with The Real You

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The Wax Weekly  is back in the mix monkeys! Get the week’s dose of news and inspiration. A new blog post will be on its way later today but while you wait get informed and be inspired!

 

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Politics, Protests and the People: An Evolution of Political Influence


Taksim Square Protest

The recent events of NSA spying, the scandal of IRS targeting, Obama’s drone wars and the Taksim Square protests in Turkey have only helped to further illuminate the growing rift between the global political system and it’s People. We the people of the world have become a caged bird squawking at our freedom through the bars of our conditioning.  The People’s hopes have been hung out to dry, becoming tattered and torn in the winds of a so-called “change”. In the ashes of our disappointment, a renovated “hope” will once again rise to be sold in its place. Continuing the conversation and further sustaining our controller’s financial and political pursuits for another 4 to 8 years. Faced with this disappointment there are still many conditioned citizens, fiends of a fraudulent Freedom, which continue to be doped up and addicted to an illusion of social progress, awaiting their next fix of political heroes and heroines.  And while many will likely rush out to the polls next election to get a fix of gender equality, as female hopefuls like Hillary Clinton and others make their way to the main stage, there is fortunately a growing number of individuals that have begun to recognize the political pageantry and posturing put forth by our so-called leaders of the free world.  How long will we allow these pushers of pre-packaged progress to hold sway over our ideas and beliefs?

This culture of corruption in the world has climbed to new heights and has begun breaking down the controls and conditioning that have captured the hearts of the people for far too long.  The credibility of our controllers has become laughable and the people are beginning to look to their leaders with disdain and disbelief, rather than with pride and praise.  Everyday we come ever closer to the realization that no one can represent us, in the same way that we can represent ourselves. A new evolution in human consciousness is upon us and we look to new ways to break old molds.  Information will be our saving grace in our pursuit for true democracy, in this political landscape which hinges upon the deceptive practices of its contributors.

As the democratization of information continues to revolutionize the cultural constructs of yesterdays past, we stand on the cusp of a new epoch in the intellectual development of the human species and thankfully 2 Billion plus people around the world are now apart of a global conversation.  A conversation which informs, entertains, and documents the story of the people.  The technological manifestations of our intellect are changing the ways with which we interact with each other and the world.  American engineer and Intel entrepreneur Peter Diamandis has explained that new technologies will soon democratize production globally, leading to a new paradigm of abundance. In this same thread we are seeing a democratization of political power and influence as well, which is leading to an abundance of information and innovation. The death of history lies on the horizon as the global village begins to document their own story, narrating their own past, present and future, free from the hands of a dominant class.

While this normalization of power proliferates, it continues to present new and unexpected challenges for the political paradigm of our global society. We as a collective are beginning to realize the true nature of our influence and are beginning to exercise that influence as a path to political, social and economic change. Modern finance is evolving as we attempt to free it from the bondage of banking institutions and government controls with the advent of new money technologies like that of Bitcoin.The internet is developing new voices which have never before been heard, that now echo across the airwaves and inhabit the brainwaves of street rats and fat cats alike.

Change is in the chatter, so let us join the conversation and evolve. Our growing collective is manifesting new realities by the minute which we then reinvent, refine and re-define for the global community.  This global conversation is projecting new ideologies everyday into the ether of the internet for each of us to consume, transform, and re-innovate for further reproduction.  We are living on the cusp of an intellectual infinite where every person on the earth will have the ability to access information, incorporate innovations, and proliferate their own progress into the human story being laid out in front of us all. We are here to bear witness to a great revolution in the human spirit where a change of guard awaits us, in a future of self-representation and self-expression. So let us create our place in the hallways of history, by speaking the Truth, fighting for Freedom and collectively developing a reality which reflects the true nature of our ideals.  Tune out of the Tyranny, turn onto the Truth and drop out of a system that has nothing to do with who you are.  Stand for yourself and for those around you, and let us change the world.

Just. B.

You can follow @Justin_Blush on Twitter

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Bitcoins, Bullion and the Battle for Economic Dominance


Bitcoin Magazine

Bitcoin Magazine

As the global economy continues to be the topic of interest and concern, the people of the world search tirelessly for an answer to the never-ending  crisis of economic confidence.  Gold has been a safe-haven for many people who fear that the corruption of global government and the mishandlings of our money masters will soon sink the floating currencies of a toppling global economy.  Although gold has served our economic endeavors time immemorial, it unfortunately shares the same trappings of the other controlled currencies within this global economy.  In the case of gold, the fixing of its price is determined daily by five of the most powerful banking institutions in the entire world. These also just happen to be a few of the same banking institutions that have played pivotal roles in the creation of our current financial predicament. Just as gold pricing is fixed by the gurus of modern finance so too are the floating currencies of the world, which find their footing in the foreign exchange market, which relies entirely upon the interdependence of the foreign exchange rates of the day.  In a global community whose faith in financial institutions and governmental guidings is swiftly fading, likewise the controlled currencies and gold fixings of those institutions are fading alongside them as well.  We are left with a single question in response to this declining confidence – If not this system, then what?  Could it be that the answer to that question lies within the ever-expanding and enlightening conversation of the internet?

Over the past decade there has been a revolution happening within the minds of the global citizen.  Each of us, everyday, is being empowered, we are realizing that no longer are our ideas confined to the rhetoric of experts and talking heads, but instead we can be the experts of our own experience.  We are now finally in control of the conversation.  The governments of the world are finding it harder and harder to sell citizens the necessity of representative governance, this is because the people are coming closer and closer to the realization that they can now represent themselves more freely than any corporate shill can. The proliferation of ideas and the empowerment of the average person is all well and good you say, but what exactly does that have to do with gold and floating currencies?

In 2011, Adrien Chen at Gawker wrote an article about an underground website called “the Silk Road” that is facilitating the black market transactions of a budding internet drug trade.  For many people like myself this would be the first time that we would  be introduced to the Silk Road as well as a new currency that was being used on the site called bitcoin.  Bitcoin is a crypto-currency and in addition to being used on the internet for illegal transactions is also being used for many other purposes as well.  Vendors that accept Bitcoin range from the online drug dealer to the local dry-cleaners.  Bitcoin, recently has gained the interest of the global community because of the sudden rise in its value over the past few months.  In January one bitcoin was trading at around $15.00, as of this post the bitcoin is trading at $126.20 on Mt. Gox and over the past few days the price has been perpetually rising.

One of the more interesting aspects of this new currency is that it is not controlled by any government nor banking institution, but rather it is a digital currency that relies upon an open source, person to person, network of transactions.  Bitcoin, in this way is providing a new global currency that is not only free of failing governments and the trappings of global banking institutions, but also mirrors the new paradigm of the internet community which includes innovations such as crowd-sourcing, open-source programming, free file-sharing, etc.  If the internet and the information revolution has taught us anything over the past decade, it is that the decentralization of power has led to an expansion of possibilities and new ideas.

So, in the case of our money, will we merely be destined to be the perpetual purchasers of interest-laden toxic currencies provided to us by the powers that be, or will the future of our financial maneuverings find the freedom that our ideas are only now beginning to enjoy?  Bitcoin, with its promise of anonymity, and its disconnection from centralized banks and governments is providing users with freedom that is seldom experienced in the court of finances and greed.  In the battle for economic dominance, bitcoin ultimately may provide the people with the power and freedom to dictate the strength of their own economy, instead of depending upon the inflationary illusions of our modern money magicians.

Although, Bitcoin very well may not be the answer to our current economic problems, it is a de-centralized currency that’s price is finalized by the free transactions of a global internet community.  If anything, this provides us with a new way of looking at how we handle money and ultimately how we manage the distribution of wealth and power.  Bitcoin is a mark of a new economic revolution, cultivated in the conversations of a cypherpunk community, interested in the freedom and privacy of all people.  Let us continue the conversation.

Just. B.

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If you are interested in learning more about Bitcoin read some of the articles below

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The Information War and the Struggle between Peasants and Kings


A king piece in chess, with three pawns.

A king piece in chess, with three pawns. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A resurrection of the Kings of old has begun the world over, as a struggle for power ensues.  The rising tide of the people is coming ever-closer to the shores of  a once unreachable court.  But now common peasants hold court with Kings in the magnificent cyber-structures of a new revolution. There is a growing unrest from the masters to the masses, and the voices of the people will not be silenced.  Presidents and Prime Ministers alike race to close the gates on an information revolution that is storming the castle walls.  The Anonymous keystrokes of a dissatisfied youth can now have the power to bring nations to their knees.  Warfare, is swiftly moving from the battlefields, to the neural networks of a computer interface, and the governments of old struggle to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of a technology that they helped to create.   But, the cat is out of the bag and the people are beginning to realize that their leaders are frauds and frontmen for a corporate controlled money and power grab.  But power is soon to be the product of information more so than a product of wealth.  The business model of the globe is rapidly changing and the word on the street holds more value now than debates held in the stuffy chambers of an archaic governing class.  The Media, once a medium between governments and their subjects is now evolving into a platform for the people to speak their peace. We the citizens of the world are moving into a future that will include the crowd-sourcing of leadership, the real-time streaming of public opinion and citizen voting, and the creation of laws that mirror the will of the people rather than the will of a dying oligarchy.

This new future of course will not come without a fight, as our leaders are beginning to use Executive orders, drone strikes, and indefinite detention as instruments of control against their citizens.  As their stranglehold on the power structure begins to whither and wane, their will to hang on to their control will inevitably become increasingly more powerful and their attempts more desperate.  The People’s saving grace will be their hunger for the  Truth, their dreams of righteous leadership and their realization of the true meaning of freedom.  It is the freedom to know and teach, the freedom to listen and speak, and the freedom to be active participants in the shaping of their own reality.  The days of intermediaries and representatives are coming to a close and the new revolution of information is giving rise to a leadership that can be found on the streets of commoners. An enlightened peasantry, undoing the shackles of oppression and becoming the leaders that they for so long have been searching for.  So Stand and Fight for your Freedom to Be.

Just. B.

You can follow @Justin_Blush on Twitter

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