Time has flashed by since I wrote my last version of my “Theory of post-industrial economics” (Revision 6 — 24 January). It’s short enough (about 2,000 words) for any theory on a complex subject and I’m hoping that, one day, I’ll be revising it and extending it somewhat to be a book chapter
Nevertheless, no theory worth its salt should not also be easily described on one sheet of paper. It is only then, as sales people are taught, that it might have a USP (Unique Selling Point). Well, in the eight weeks since Revision 6, nothing like a USP has yet emerged. But I’m down to three main elements and I thought it might be a useful exercise to write these three as succinctly as I can — yet still makes sense to the lay reader — and see what happens.
If I write three paragraphs of no more than 50 words each then that ought to qualify. In fact, as i was writing the previous sentence, it occurred to me quite strongly that one of the points may be the USP, so I’ll leave that till the last. Here goes:
1. According to the Principle of Least Effort, all mechanical systems will find their own equilibrium. As Richard Feynman once said: “Don’t ask me how or why this happens. I don’t know — nor does anyone else.” As intermediary mechanical systems themselves, governmental economists can’t alter inevitable outcomes. Their minds are also bound by the laws of physics.
2. The growth of intelligence is built into all life forms from bacteria through to advanced mammals. It has developed in man to a high degree. Even more so in the most economically advanced countries, intelligence is now marginally increasing in the upper middle-classes as a viable self-breeding sub-population now separating itself from the masses that are now declining in numbers towards possible extinction.
3. The industrial revolution was impelled by human greed and exploitation initially but was subsequently sustained by populist aspirations for status goods. It cannot be expanded all round the world. It was a one-off historical period. The upper middle-classes in advanced countries will continue to prosper quietly as the owners, supervisors and software creators of automated systems making advanced products and services.
That was tough! Try as I might, I’ve had to enlarge to 60 words per paragraph. Does the last paragraph amount to a Unique Selling Point? I’m not sure yet.