Premises of Productivism

For sake of quick discussion, I figured I’d put together the set of premises behind productivism.  The idea being that this can serve as an even briefer version of the productivist manifesto, which isn’t the most concise.  I always find it best to understand the theories or premises at the start of discussion so we can best guide the purpose of debate.  The following includes some new insights that I will probably revise the manifesto with sometime in the future.

  • The production of wealth is the moral and objective goal for individuals, businesses, and society.
  • An individual’s sovereignty (self-ownership and property rights) should rest in the production of wealth.  If an individual can produce more than they can consume, as measured by generally accepted accounting principles, they are entitled to own themselves and the excess wealth they produce.  The basis of individual liberty is so we can be productive with our property.
  • Tyranny, the taking and destroying of wealth of others through force, is a natural outcome of societies in a state of nature, where those who would specialize in violence outcompete those who specialize in productivity.
  • To control and mitigate this tyranny, productive individuals come together under a social contract (constitution) that establishes a government, effectively a corporation on the enforcement of property rights and the rule of law.  Through the constitution, this government is accountable to the people over which it governs.
  • The purpose of rights outlined in a constitution are to maintain the political authority of the people over the government.  If such rights were infringed by the government, the people would risk losing their control over it.
  • The flaws of our current political system stem from the improper basis of egalitarianism in our constitutional structure, currently manifested as one person, one vote.  Unbridled egalitarianism (with no constitutional constraints) leads to the destructive distribution of wealth equally rather than the net production of wealth on the whole.
  • Egalitarianism is false in that rather than all people being legally equal, instead all wealth is legally equal.
  • Since wealth is the value of property, both suffrage and taxation should be in proportion to wealth, as the representation and price for property rights.
  • Suffrage and taxation within regional governments would be in proportion to the wealth within its jurisdiction.
  • Individuals are sovereign property (self-owned) whose wealth is valued based on their income/productivity, as determined by perhaps the market price to earnings ratio.  Wealth tax on an individual effectively would manifest as income tax on that individual.
  • Human beings can be seen and measured as capital investment by their parents from the point of conception, just like a business.  The wealth of a child from the point of conception is the market value of expenses paid on the child, up until the point of sovereignty, where their wealth is then based on their net income.  The parents represent the wealth of their child (pay taxes and receive suffrage) until the point of sovereignty of their child, at which point the child then represent themselves.
  • In this ever increasingly secular society, the production of wealth is a good moral code to guide our lives and choices.  It can guide us in terms of our career paths, our investments, our education, our consumption, our research, our charity, and raising a family.  It is consistent with other popular secular moral philosophies such as:
    • Hedonism
      • Being productive feels good, it appeals to our pride.  Also, the more productive you are, the more you can afford to consume goods and avoid pains.
    • Utilitarianism and Altruism
      • Producing goods and services that serve others is necessary in the production of wealth.
      • Through the creation of productive persons (e.g. raising a family), knowledge (e.g. sponsoring research), and infrastructure (e.g. good laws and government), one can transform their own wealth into the wealth of society as a whole.
    • Survivalism
      • The production of goods is necessary to survival.
      • Those individuals and societies that are most productive, and can defend their wealth, will tend to outlive and outcompete all those that aren’t, allowing survival indefinitely.
    • Seeking Truth, Knowledge, and Technology
      • In seeking the production of wealth, knowledge is essential in order to know how property and resources should be productively organized.  Acting on ignorance (false beliefs) is antithetical to accomplishing one’s goals.
      • Research is justified towards discovery of accurate and useful theories of nature that improve our productivity of property, including our own bodies, effectively increasing the wealth of society.
  • Wealth, and its production, is the unifying principle that all nations and people in the world can agree to (everyone wants wealth, especially self-ownership).  This principle can effectively form a world government that will abolish anarchy and war between current governments, just as the US constitution did among the states when it established and enforced a federal government.  Productive entities (the people) are the ultimate sovereigns under such a government.  Where laws may differ globally and regionally (what you can do with your property as defined by regional and local governments), property rights (ownership of such property) would be enforced globally such that property can be transported, recognized, and defended wherever it is most productive.
  • The principle of sovereignty through productivity will be how we best recognize the rights of non-human entities such as perhaps future robots or computers that can behave in a sovereign and productive manner within society.
  • Wealth is produced or destroyed based on three factors that we as individuals control.
    • Organization
      • How property is organized via its internal assets.
      • Capital is hierarchical where its components are made of components and so on.  How those components are arranged together within property dictate the value of the property on the whole.
      • The difference between the book value of property (the sum of market values of property’s individual components) and the market value of property, is it’s organizational value.
      • Through the efficient organization of their property can people (and businesses) increase their overall productivity, producing wealth.
    • Knowledge
      • Understanding how the functionality of specific property can be utilized.
      • Knowledge manifests itself as investment, where the entrepreneur with capital has an idea of how to use property in a productive way (based on their knowledge), and then purchases that property to exercise their idea.  This is true for business, and is also true simply for the consumer looking to use a good or service to improve their own life.
      • Through the discovery and application of laws of nature that govern how property functions can people increase the value of their property.
    • Environment
      • The infrastructure (including the market, network of services, and laws) which augments or limits the use of property.
      • Property rights and the rule of law are fundamental to a productive society.
      • Through the discovery and enforcement of good laws and infrastructure can people increase the value of their property within society on the whole.

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