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There was a country once, set up after a rebellion against an (arguably) evil dictatorship. The new nation had at its foundation a philosophy of maximizing human potential. It began with a complete theoretical road map, a clear path to the just society. Its dream was freedom, peace, and productivity.

But something happened. A band of thugs took over and ran the country as an enterprise for their private gain. The underpinnings of the original system were quickly forgotten, or perverted into an excuse for continued rule by the clique in charge. Eventually, of course, the scheme collapsed. It took down the gang who ran things, but it also destroyed countless innocent lives and wasted the resources of a once-great land.

What went wrong? Maybe the cancer was already there at the start --- when the final goals and how to reach them were defined. Maybe it's impossible to draw a picture of the ideal end-state, as impossible as it is to draw perfection itself. One can only show examples --- partial and flawed --- and then leave the door open for individuals to work things out for themselves ... to define their own goals, purposes, meanings ... and to seek them in their own ways, within a framework that minimizes their destructive tendencies and maximizes their opportunities to work together peacefully. No utopia, just us chickens, doing our best.

Tuesday, August 29, 2000 at 21:20:27 (EDT) = Datetag20000829


(correlates: Zhurnal Three, ExpandingContexts, SkippingAhead, ...)