Continued from here.
The amount of knowledge to absorb on this quest had been daunting, even for one of my* intellectual and spiritual fortitude and mental capacity. I needed to know genetics and biology, neuroscience, education, military, ecology, history, social sciences, anthropology and the best integrations of knowledge across those many disciplines. Then integrate those integrations, add as much wisdom as I had achieved over the years, and, having produced the material and product requirement specification and high-level design***, the test plan for the design (bugs in design specifications are hardest to catch),then developed and implemented the transform mechanisms, I could start playing the games needed to move now to more optimal. Key was getting the measures right and an accurate model of the society before I did that, otherwise it would be easy to produce social disaster, all such designs before me had done so.
My design would not, I decided, specify anything to do with the economics or politics of the resulting system, beyond the normal incentives of being human in a civilization I designed. I specifically did not want to have any influence on any of those areas, rather to arrange a society that would naturally use their knowledge to find a system that could allow everything to perform better. Besides, all sciences are, at base, empirical disciplines, a matter of finding what can work. For the real world, for economics and other studies based on historical data, their theory gets applied after the fact to explain events, it is naive to think that only one theory fits the facts equally well. People had been solving such practical problems for 1000s of years unless prevented by society and institutions driven by prophets less attuned to reality than my mind could grasp. So nothing I could do would improve on that massed intelligence. Science, society, politics and the economy would adjust to the new reality as I enabled it.
The major material I had to work with, of course, were humans. The specification of humans and humanity, of human nature and the society that would best exploit the resource of human nature, maximizing their positive attributes while minimizing the negative, wasn’t a trivial task, as human nature had changed so radically with different human environments. I was certainly no Pollyanna, I did not think humans perfectable, but you must appreciate how far we have come in the modern, and how little reason we have to believe we are near our limits. In fact, given how massively corrupt most societies have been in the past, 2016 in the first world wasn’t that bad, we were largely non-violent except for young men not integrated into the formal economic system. In more primitive societies, people are more honest because to be otherwise is to annoy your fellows in survival games. We needed a structure and ethic and incentives for goals that would produce the fastest sustainable increases in civilization. To do so, they must include those incentives to be human and merge them with a modern complex civilization.
The deficiencies in this civilization were well known, the major mismatch of human natures and capabilities to surrounding societies and institution, the very high failure rates of people and institutions, and the resulting massive waste of human resources applied to human civilization. So very sub-optimum that it would be very easy to fix, but fixing it stably and simultaneously expand the list of routine human joys and pleasures, that was the problem. I mean, hunter-gatherer in the Kalahari is stable so long as the desert remains and the outside world doesn’t help, and provides a surprisingly-high level of human satisfaction for the civilization they achieved, but can’t produce a civilization that produces science and modern medicine, my definition of a high civilization. Anything that can produce more civilization can also produce instability. The nature of nature, you know.
So I began my study of the world’s systems, looking for the chink in its armor, the bug in the systems, the systems-equivalent of a toxoplasma to bias their CNS function to liking a situation that benefits our opposition, that would allow me to direct them in paths of peace. Stably in an open, evolving, complex system of ever-improving civilization, ‘improvement’ redefined anew every generation, as always.
That is the trick, of course, there being no technology or intellectual study that can control open, evolving, complex system in laboratory models, much less one the size and complexity of a civilized planet. Heuristics, approximations found to be useful in the past, are called for. Also known as ‘winging it’, an opportunity to believe in our own propaganda. Avoiding group think, maintaining open discussion grounded in the best reality and wisdom our world’s creative minds can manage, is the key.
But of course, the trick for our opposition also. As powerful as the Status Quos of the world were, a mechanism is no more powerful than its control system nor more invulnerable than its weakest critical elements considered as pairs, triplets, … That is a lot of bases to cover, and nuclear power plant designs regularly fail to do so despite the engineering analysis that has been applied to them. The world is more complex than a nuclear power plant design, so TPTB may control the news, may be able to do operations of the size and complexity of 9/11 FF, direct millions of refugees to particular countries, yet not have a clue about anything important for its future.
How to have better heuristics more consistently applied? Now we are discussing something I actually knew about from one of my careers, computer control systems. All control systems, informal team leader through the most fail-safe control of the most complex system, must include these components : a sensor array of sufficient sensitivity and resolution to accurately determine the system’s state, an array of effectors sufficient to move the mechanisms driving the system’s dynamics the directions and amounts needed to control the overall system state, and a computing system that can calculate the current system state from the sensors information and compute the needed response of the effectors in order to alter the next state to be a more desired state, and repeat these steps of sense, compute, effect at a sufficient rate to keep the underlying system within bounds of the control system’s capabilities.
The computing system’s control program that does that computation is the hard part. For simpler systems, say up to airliner complexity, that program contains a model of the system, to which the sensor input is applied and from which the effector settings necessary to keep the system performing its function emerge. But it is not possible to construct models for open systems, it would have to model a substantial chunk of the local universe in atomic detail to maintain consistency with reality for longer periods, say a few days. Accuracy falls off rapidly with lesser levels of details.
For an open, evolving, complex system, such as the average human’s reality in a stone-age farming community, we must substitute a dense local sensor net of people and a very local judgement along with many minds focused on that local reality with all of their different points of view. Out of shared wisdom and a common reality, small steps can be tried in building better futures. For most things, what worked before is good enough, if ‘what worked’ is local enough and applied inconsistently enough to allow variation, and thus evolution.
That is the problem with centralization of systems : the large optimizations to be had are so much more apparent than the many and widespread small losses due to the lack of local knowledge and local evolutions. It is much more likely a large simple policy will be applied consistently, which kills adaptability.
So our First Volunteer Panzer Psyops Corps, one of the many early psyops by which I effected the desired changes, was many things simultaneously. First, it was an exploration of decentralization with more sharing of information across localities, peer-to-peer than would have ever been possible before in history. That is, in olden times information had to be recorded to be shared across geographical distances, even county to county, and minds that worked soil might not have words or words in common needed to share insights, even if minds that wrote could be bothered. Now you find a name on a comment on a discussion thread on the internet using a search engine, recognize a fellow with a similar problem, and say ‘hi’ in a moment. Your bandwidth of information exchanged with him is likely to be much higher via that personal long-distance link than a a literate person exchanging with another in 1000AD, much less 1000BC. The cost of sharing information is at an all-time low and continues to fall, tho you have to have the right people talking to the right people about the right things to optimize that. A complex society takes a lot of experts, being able to talk to them is very important, but they have to be connected to a primary reality and shared goal, or ‘expert’ becomes noise in the system.
‘First Panzers’, as we refer to ourselves, were the first practitioners and trainers and judges of contests and general evangelists for our governance efforts, our use of the judgement of more and more engaged minds to guide our future. Initially, we developed and provided advanced training and forensics tools for analyzing the failures that lead to accidents. We judged each other’s psyops, and did them ourselves for fun and profit. Subscriptions funded most of our clubs, and the competition between teams, along with incessant critical comments about other team’s operational integrity and a very skeptical modern public, kept it all clean.
As part of every psyop, there was an associated information campaign. For example, the Accidental Patriot Action psyop campaign, really just the same idea as the Federal government’s Sandy Hoaxen run citizen against government, finally got major media attention when we convinced a major insurance company to attack the trend of blaming every accident on ‘patriot action’. That wasn’t even a real trend, we made it up after our dozens of ‘patriot action’ psyop stories built on the fact that already people doubted the many ‘accidents’, so many of which were likely insurance fraud, and the insurance company somehow didn’t manage to do any statistical analysis. After which, a) everyone was convinced that patriot actions were a major loss to the oligarchs, b) many more accidents were blamed on the patriot’s sabotage actions, c) the government started blaming patriots’s sabotage for the bad economy, and d) major business magazines were running articles analyzing the risks of owning stocks in companies in which those oligarchs had major holdings == cracks in the status quo. Most importantly, the government passed laws restricting our reporting, which had no effect as our were relatively quiet operations from the beginning, divided MSM’s opinions and provided instant credibility for First Panzers!
Doing all of this without misleading ourselves was the single accomplishment I am most proud of. None of us believed any of that at any time whether we knew the club or not, we laughed, guffawed, giggled, chuckled, chortled, nearly choked with laughter and otherwise behaved strangely at odd moments. Words did all of that, trained us all so we could do it for real, and gave us the contacts inside the oligarch’s organizations to make it easy and safe for all.
We also trained the replacements for MSM, whose end was visible : we were really good at seeing what was real and why it so often could not be, and how to know the difference. You see, we knew what were real accidents, what were incidents that we had generated as a hoax, and what were insurance fraud, false flags, other patriots who had picked up the sabotage meme, or we couldn’t discern who was behind them. As a result, over time, our bloggers and vloggers were very trusted neutrals and we knew how the others went wrong. That was a weakness we exploited, also.
By the end of that particular campaign, in fact, we were a slick operation. An major accident would happen, say a crane falling in a big city. If nobody had been hurt, not even any close calls, our teams would begin digging into chains of ownership of the companies involved, who were the local control and political alliances. Somewhere in the chain were always one or more oligarch owners who had done something we could say the ‘patriot action’ had been to rebuke.
We found that reporters were mostly too busy to ask enough locals to find someone who really knew the local companies and political powers, but ours was a low overhead citizenship training operation, so we threw more bodies at it, even if only via video link. After recruiting some local allies and learning more about the site, the accident, consequences for the local community and other property owners, who would lose and who would benefit, we would construct a plausible story for an operation that produced that result, run the scenario past the locals who would walk through the script on site, add as many details as we could, and try hard to eliminate inconsistencies. They would make improvements and we would walk it several times, many minds looking for the inconsistencies, but you can’t get them all.
We had news crews who would produce all of the required background reports from our ‘on the scene reporters’ and spin out interviews with locals, tracking someone who supposedly knows inside information, … And the traditional interview in the dark room, muffled voice, … The alert reporters would try to trip him up, he would have good explanations for every point, and be careful not to know everything, some things were out of his level of the plan, or not what he saw or heard, … Always the tell “I wasn’t part of the team, I only heard about it” for anyone who reads carefully, so we did not mislead our own.
These were very believable, even when widely not believed. Generally speaking, our stories were much better than MSM-government hoaxes, as they were professional liars trying to make a facade appear truth, while we were professional truth tellers telling entirely made-up tales based on minimal changes to solid reality and admitting it, tho subtly. Ours were far more believable.
Of course we had imitators, except they were more into moving material than bits, and did real damage, sometimes with loss of life. Not our fault, we always lauded the ‘patriot actions’ in our stories because they were so carefully planned to avoid that.
Those were early stages of reforming society, part of breaking the oligarchs power. That campaign of psyops continued until the reorganization of the economy that occurred as a result of my social reorganizations finally eliminated their income streams and the era of oligarchs faded away.
Second, First Volunteer Panzers was merely one of many independent investigating groups made up of volunteers who were careful not to allow influences from any outsiders to affect their reputations for integrity. We were in friendly competition, often worked the same cases and shared information. That group of investigative teams were one element of a traditional independent tripart structure of justice, which together implemented oversight for the civilization, local to global. The others were Justice and the Execution arms. Justice was a parallel project that others started to discipline our early operations and perhaps too-hasty judgments, we welcomed the legitimacy they gave to our investigations via their implementations of Open Trials.
Investigations, as an early disciple of mine had discussed previously, in a world of ubiquitous surveillance, was almost too easy. Every home and business had multiple security cameras, webcams focused on the outside. Those were often monitored by computers that used facial recognition to identify individuals on lists, and paid to inform the operators of remote weapons packages that included those areas.
Open Trials has been widely discussed, and I will cover them in more detail in a later chapter.
By the time the Amnesty Commissions had finished there work, there were relatively few holdouts : the Himalayian Range of data had cowed even MSM, who now reluctantly acknowledge the deep rot of corruption that had penetrated society. The execution of death sentences was carried out by the usual distributed groups motivated by rewards of KickEnders and implemented by Bunny Banger technology with the many security cams to detect the executee and alert operators, who usually sold the right to pull the trigger of whatever weapon’s killing ground the condemned came within. People often considered serving on several juries every year a civic duty. Voting ‘guilty’ in an Open Trial capital case was often accompanied by contributions to the KickEnder accounts, a way of acknowledging the gravity of their decision and taking responsibility for it.
Death sentences were rare after the early days of transition, and even then people on the list escaped for many years afterward, but the costs of security were very high and long life was feasible only by adopting very great restrictions : no travel, very few visitors, no exposure to the outside (remote control weapons had escalated to drones and balloons with stand-off weapons including lasers aimed by sizeable telescopes), and very loyal security staff. Do you realize how large KickEnder account balances become in that circumstance? People respond to criminals using their ill-gotten wealth to hide from public justice, and the secondary betting pools on how soon the sentence would be executed provide further motive for contributing.
In each case, the media were filled with interviews via jittery video of the condemned people in locations carefully hidden by the overlay networks. Extreme paranoids (all of the jitter wasn’t latency) and certain their loyal retainers would betray them when their ability to pay enough to prevent that betrayal finally failed. Writing the payoff clauses of those employment contracts must have been difficult.**** Even automation was no answer, robots in those days were relatively easily hacked, and Anonymous had not lost their chops.
But those were years in the future, the immediate problem was disciplining oligarchs, lessening their influence and control. For that, we attacked their wealth with words and image.
In a world of ubiquitous surveillance, people have to carefully mind their own business, we cannot allow information about people’s sins of sufficient size to make them at all malleable to become part of any central organization’s databases. That was the source of much of our corruption : investigations reveal information about people personally, and inevitably convey power of knowledge of sin as well as knowledge of real crimes. We had strict standards for crimes of sin (coercion must be part of it and sex with minors is always suspect) before we would even include such in an investigation’s files when we encountered evidence for them, but the requirement that we publish all of our investigations for any prosecution meant we had to scrub every bit of non-crime from our files before we did so, and meant that we could not retain such information. People could find these things privately, but then so could anyone in the world who wanted to spend enough time looking through surveillance tapes, we had no particular advantage there, and were careful to avoid any hint of taking advantage of such.
We depended upon our clubs being independent, made up of individuals volunteering their time, and in the idealistic phase of life that lends itself to making the world a better place, part of becoming adult and making contacts, meeting potential mates. Young idealists are natural radicals, one of our goals was to keep as many of those as possible working for system stability.
Nevertheless, as innocuous as the clubs were meant to be, we needed further restrictions to prevent the accumulation of power, especially for a group like ours who acted on their results. Most important is the power they are allowed : words only, never force and never coercion. Psyops meets that goal.
Much has been written about the evolution of the world’s government, the distributed intelligence that the world’s population became, beginning from the small efforts I made, as some credit me. Indeed, I could never see any other solution. The problem is one of trust in a world where secrecy can mean wealth and one can relatively easily purchase the secrecy needed for achieving wealth illegally, but the fact can rarely be hidden forever. That information landscape with inevitable evolution of human attitudes within changing political systems guarantees deep corruption as the games of kleptocracy evolve ever-more elaborately, comfortably keeping ahead of the outrage rising behind, confidence based on 100 years of riding the regulations-regulatory agency-regulated business gravy train with ever-higher returns to going along and getting along. Until the whole system collapses in one of the amazing historic catastrophes that civilizations seem prone to.
So the basis for judging ‘good’ was ‘What do the world’s intelligent people think?” World government, but of quite a different sort. We can trust this one, there is no way to centralize it nor to seize it, and you can’t even game it for long.
So, a rather successful career as prognosticator of the obvious. True, I was wrong on practically everything I ever predicted would work. Plans and ideas never work cleanly and easily, of course, nothing does when thoughts meet reality. But our feedback systems were good, we had a reverence for reality to coordinate our efforts around the world, and we humans collectively can know anything we want, we just have to ask the right person in the right way. First Volunteer Panzer Psyops Corp is known to be good folks, and to ask nice. People like to help the good guys do what the world’s wisest have agreed is good.
Looking back over this history, probably my biggest insight is that complex systems all have the equivalent of genotype networks or low-energy orbital transfers, and that those paths of minimal resistance, along with the inevitable weaknesses that exist in any complex system, allow minor nudges, applied at the right time and sustained as necessary, to literally pull down entire structures, in the same way that a single bit changed in the right place in a computer’s memory or I/O stream can crash the entire system. Fitted to an organization structured to use the peer-to-peer powers of the internet and used politically, that was the end of oligarchs and governments that could arouse opposition, i.e. any using coercion.
*Generalissimo Grand Strategy, Intelligence Analysis and Psyops, First Volunteer Panzer Psyops Corp. Cleverly Gently Martial In Spirit**
**’The specification is the message’, an evolutionary improvement on McLuhan’s meme, I thought.
***These details are covered in later chapters of the book. I just present highlights here.
****If a payoff on a certain date, what happens right after that? Negotiating a new contract better be signed in advance or the employee has the upper hand in the negotiation, what with the consolation prize of the Kickender fund. Any new amount would have to be larger than the KickEnder account balance, lest the security person or servant get the payoff check and off the boss for the KickEnder fund. If payoff is ‘natural death’, lots of other complexities, and again the total amounts better be more than the KickEnder. Smart employees may well figure ways to hasten your demise in a way that allows the contract to be paid, document them, and nevertheless claim the account. Arbitrators and judges were going to earn their money on this question, I predicted. Also, lots of novels and video dramas.