FAQs and common criticism
Answers to the most common questions and criticisms of the Charter ideology.
If you have read and understood the concepts of The Free World Charter and a money-free society, but are still sceptical of the ideas, then you are not alone!
Many people baulk at the notion of removing money, trade and ownership, and for lots of different reasons. This page tries to address these objections, which in most cases are completely understandable.
Here are the main questions and criticisms that people have with a money-free society: (Click to show answer) [ Expand/Collapse all ]
If we take away money, how will we live? Won't we all just be poor?
Money is not essential to life. Resources are what we need to live, not money. Money is just a tool, invented to help organise the distribution of scarce resources. Modern technology now offers us a potential abundance of these resources such as food, water, shelter, and a high standard of living. We can procure, produce and manufacture all of life's necessities more easily now than ever before. The only thing scarce nowadays is money itself!
In a money-free world, the concept of rich and poor will be meaningless as everyone will have equal access to all life has to offer.
Human nature has just one function: to survive. This survival instinct drives all our behaviours. So when we are faced with scarcity, we automatically become greedy, because it's good for survival. Today, money is scarce and we need it to live, so we try and get as much as we can. It's a perfectly natural response to a world where people who don't have money die.
Once people realise there is no longer any real scarcity, and they are a vital part of a community that supports them, greed and selfishness will become unnecessary. Our instincts will then drive positive behaviours such as cooperation, trust and compassion which are also necessary for survival.
This sounds like a version of communism, which has always failed.
Any political system, including communism, that uses money is ultimately doomed to fail, because it embodies inequality and oppression. Money, by definition, creates inequality, and upholding that inequality necessitates oppression. The level of inequality and oppression in any political system determines how long the regime will last.
There is only one real law that we must obey, and that is the law of nature. Failure to abide by it ultimately results in extinction. We need to move beyond traditional politics and governance and solve our common problems together in accordance with nature.
No ownership? So anyone can just move into my house or take my car?
This initiative is not just a change in economics, it is a complete reset of human values. By removing money, you remove the main motivation for greed. Where there is no greed, there is no struggle for ownership. Also, when everything is free, no-one needs to covet your property when they can just as easily get their own.
In a free world, people will also respect each other's entitlement to safe dwelling, privacy and security, because that's how they will be taught from the earliest age - about communities, nature and how we're all connected and mutually dependent. This will be taught alongside reading, writing and arithmetic.
Nonsense, we just need tighter regulation and more accountability!
We need education, not regulation. Telling a person that they 'must not' do something is no match for the person who is educated to a standard where they understand that they 'cannot do' something, especially when the reasons are simple, transparent and fair.
In a free world, people will receive this education to the highest standards from their earliest age - about communities, nature, the planet, how they work and how they're all connected. Regulation is a blunt instrument that is currently only used to mask our lack of fairness and proper education.
Everything is free? Great! I'll have 100 grand pianos please!
Firstly, and assuming somone had a genuine reason for needing 100 grand pianos, an appropriate level of education and responsibility towards nature would prevent most people from making such a request, due to the heavy drain on natural resources and human skills that fulfilling such an order would require.
Even so, if such a request was genuine for whatever reason, there's no reason why it shouldn't be fulfilled providing it is physically possible to do, and the person making the request accepts the length of time it would undoubtedly take to complete.
Science and technology do not have all the answers!
True, and any scientist will freely admit that. The main purpose of science, in fact, is to find answers, and it does so by using consistent measurements and verifiable data in the physical world.
Some people believe there is a world beyond the physical. Science has never proven this and perhaps never will. But whatever your belief in the meta-physical, the challenges that face us today are very much physical and technical ones. For example, how do we provide for everyone while preserving our planet? Politics, speculation or hearsay cannot answer this. A scientific approach is the only way to find answers to technical problems.
There is nothing to fear from a technological world; technology is already a major part of our lives today. Once we separate it from profit, greed and cost limitations, anything is possible. To dream of a free world is human, but to build it requires science.
What about boring or unpleasant jobs that can't be automated?
There are very few human tasks that could not either be automated or re-engineered in some way to enable automation of it. In the case of an unpleasant or mundane task that cannot be automated for any reason, it can be rotated voluntarily amongst members of the local community.
Most people, if asked to carry out such a task once a month (for example), and serve a community which meets all their needs, would be delighted to volunteer. Those who don't volunteer, don't.
What about 'human' jobs, like nursing or teaching?
Working together with a common aim is what most of us do every day. We work together as a company, a family, a neighbourhood or a group. We like to cooperate. We like to belong. Ask yourself how many times a day you do something that isn't directly in your own interest or you don't get paid for? The answer will surprise you.
Every day, everywhere in the world, we are helping each other because we want to. Because it makes us feel good about ourselves. Humans are a social species and cooperation comes naturally. Removing our financial shackles will fully unleash this natural cooperative desire.
People who have a passion and flair for these 'human' jobs will do them because, and only because, they love doing it!
But there will be no motivation to work.. or do anything!
Money is not an incentive to work, it is an obligation to earn. True incentives to work are passion, flair, helping out, meeting people, wanting to learn. Once money is removed from our lives, people will work with these incentives only, and be far happier and more productive as a result.
As to having nothing to do, that's up to the individual. In a free world, being free of work and financial constraints would enable you to fulfil your dreams in ways that you can only imagine now. For instance, you could travel anywhere, anytime; pursue your hobby or passion without cost constraints; contribute your skills or talents into the community; spend more time with your family, etc.
This is just a Utopian dream and will probably never work.
Utopia is fiction. This is not fiction. It's technically possible now, based on fact and our current knowledge. It has never been done before because it hasn't been possible before. Having no historical precedent does not mean that it won't work or isn't worth a try.
It is by no means a perfect system and doesn't claim to solve all the world's problems, but it will solve the vast majority of them, and for that it is greatly superior to what we have now.
Where are the details?? The Charter says nothing about...
There are many, many issues which the Charter does not discuss. We describe these as 'secondary issues'. The Charter is only concerned with the most basic primary issues of how we position ourselves with each other, our planet and nature. Everything else is secondary to that.
Once we agree on these most fundamental rules, how we shape our world or conduct our society should be self-determining through an evolutionary process. Consider it like designing a better world from the ground up. The seed does not know how the plant will look.
Is this a cult or religion of some kind?
No. Everything about this initiative is based only on fact and common sense. Also, we will never ask you for anything.
The world is already over-crowded, we can't save everybody!
Over-population is a serious global issue, but not an issue that should be solved by simply allowing people to die. There are many more humane and sensible approaches to controlling population numbers other than cruel neglect.
Moreover, the problems of population numbers are going to be with us - free world or not - and it is far more likely that we will be able to devise a rational system through positive education that is given universally, freely and without the traditional budgetary constraints.
Isn't this the same as Zeitgeist or the Venus Project movement?
The Free World Charter initiative was originally inspired by Jacque Fresco's Venus Project and the ideology of a Resource-Based Economy. However there are some basic differences in approach:
The Charter initiative does not propose designs or details of any future society, as we feel these can be divisive topics, and therefore a distraction to the more urgent need to simply realign ourselves with nature.
We don't think you can design a new society from the top-down. As with all natural processes, it can only happen from the bottom-up. Once we agree to follow just these few basic rules of nature, then we can allow our society to evolve whatever way it wants to go.
We are not interested in large projects, activism or fund-raising. The Charter is simply a passive means for people to demonstrate their support for a nature-based ethos that moves slowly, firmly and positively in one direction only.
We do support both Venus and Zeitgeist, but are not affiliated with either of them. If you are a member of either organisation, then we would invite you to sign The Free World Charter too.
I already live very well without money - anyone can live like this now!
Many people opt for an 'off-grid' lifestyle, growing their own produce and becoming energy self-sufficient. However, the vast majority of people would prefer not to live this way. Most people don't want to live in isolation, and prefer the inclusiveness and security of the greater community.
Off-grid living may work very well for some, but only a very small minority. It could also be shown to increase financial pressure on others, as traditional businesses lose their customers.
I know our current system isn't perfect, but it's the best there is.
Imagine if somehow there was no system, and you were asked to choose between one that was free, equitable and sustainable, or one that promoted greed, inequality and pollution, which one would you choose? There's no comparison.
The fact is, our monetary system is mathematically unworkable with its ever-increasing debt, it creates and promotes inequality, and is detrimental to life itself through its prioritisation of profit over people and planet. The only reason we are still using this system is because we haven't adapted to our new capabilities, and it's simply easier to maintain what we know rather than start anew.
OK, but how do we get from 'here' to 'there'?
There are so many variables regarding what specific changes in society would actually precipitate such a massive shift in global operations, that speculating how it might unfold is almost pointless. The only thing we can say for certain is that it WILL happen when enough people want it.
Spreading the word about a free world will not lead us to a transition, spreading the word IS the transition. We are already in it. All we need is a sufficient will of the people to bring about the necessary changes. A figure as low as 1% of the world's population may even be enough to start an unstoppable chain-reaction, but how it actually unfolds is anyone's guess!
I still see a major problem with this idea!
If you still see a major problem with this initiative that hasn't been addressed here, or believe you have spotted a serious flaw, then you must compare any perceived flaw against our current system, whose flaws include mass starvation, poverty, debt, wars, pollution and needless death.
It is highly unlikely that any potential flaw will outweigh the many flaws with our current system. This is not intended to be a perfect system, it's just better than the current one. If you still strongly disagree and would like to raise the issue, then please join in the discussion on our Facebook page, and we'll try and answer your questions.
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