We are all Shareholders
of a company called Earth
Are we maximizing value for shareholders? Who is running this company?
All 7.7 billion of us hold shares in that company. Everyone is in it. Even if you don't want, you are in it, you are a shareholder.
Politicians and billionaires are the senior management of this super corporation. Are we holding them accountable for how they are running this entity?
If maximization of shareholders' value is the goal of the firm, then maximization of value for this entity called Earth Inc is the bigger goal. This is why Climate Change and fairness in access to resources matter. Maximizing the value of the company called earth is a super-important goal. It is of higher importance than the maximization of value for shareholders of the little companies inside the earth.
Capitalistic Realism has taught us to only think in capitalistic terms. So now we have to address the earth as Mother Earth Inc, Earth Pvt Ltd, Earth DE et cetera. If you don't mention shareholders, capitalists won't understand a single thing you say. You have to make use of their language. Talk about returns to shareholders, increase in value, Price-to-earnings, long-term company prospects et cetera.
We are destroying the company with our short-sighted approach of harvesting short-term gains which come at a huge long-term cost.
The earth is for all of us to enjoy. The land belongs to all of us. The oceans, the seas, the atmosphere, the fauna, and the flora belong to us (i.e., all of us). Capitalism denies access to some, just like the older systems of governance and economics on earth, a good example being feudalism.
Today, in 2022, many are coming to realize that we are one planet after all. However, we still have some pockets of resistance that still want to treat the earth as fragment and disjointed parts.
There are a couple of themes that emerge from us all being shareholders of this earth:
- Common Damnation and Common Prosperity — our fates are tied together via this corporation.
- Global Citizenry and Collapsing of Nation States — to truly become one, as we already are.
- United Earth before Space Age — unification on earth is a necessary precondition before ushering in the Space Age.
- Globally Owned and Operated Corporations — let us manifest the unification through a better global economic organization.
Common Damnation and Common Prosperity
We have to recognize the reality that our fates are now tied together more than ever before. Climate change will make us realize that. At first, it only appears to be affecting flood-prone areas like Florida. Then it starts affecting islands via droughts and fires. Sooner or later, we are going to realize that we are one. Koreans, Americans, Ugandans, Ethiopians, Brazilians, Spaniards, and Italians are one people. The tribes don't really matter. If the earth collapses into un-inhabitability, we will all suffer.
Developed countries will suffer and developing countries will suffer too. We shall all die and leave un-inhabitable earth for our children.
The world is now integrated economically and geographically (well it has always been). The coronavirus pandemic was a test, a trial run. Bigger issues are going to come. Issues that need total collaboration.
Since we face common damnation, we ought to create conditions of possibility for common prosperity. Common damnation is our fate right now, but common prosperity is not. We have a big divide between the rich and poor, the developed world and the developing world, the imperialist core and the periphery, the global north and the global south, the billionaires and us all. Global Capitalism promised us common prosperity. It delivered for decades, but then the commonality disappeared in the last three decades.
The absence of common prosperity is the stumbling block that will work against efforts to create a sustainable world. Take emissions, for example, the developed world wants to go green, yet the developing world wants to burn as much coal as possible in order to develop. That lack of commonality underwrites our mutual destruction.
Common Damnation needs to be paired together with Common Prosperity. We have to find ways to build a type of prosperity that's more common.
Global Citizenry and Collapsing of the Nation-States Concept
The earth is one place. The boundaries we erect to demarcate countries are artificial. These are human constructs. The people in Japan have stayed in Japan for a very long time, and they say Japan belongs to them. Whilst that is so easy to believe and accept, it is not true. The land, air, and sea in Japan belong to all of us. The people in Japan, and their ancestors did not invent the land, air, and seas around them.
Those who fight against globalization have their ideological orientation warped. Globalization is good. It's only bad when it's done in the capitalistic pursuit of profit. The current anti-globalization movements are understandable as they are mostly economic struggles where a portion of previously productive economic zones deteriorate as jobs move to areas where they are less regulated and less remunerated.
As we enter the 2030s, 40s, and 50s, it has to be our goal to build a new form of global citizenry, where there is free movement of people across the globe. We have to fight to emphasize the concept of a Nation-State, and truly become one global nation. Global Citizenry should encourage a very fluid meaning of locales. Anyone can be a local anywhere.
We have to deemphasize tribes, languages, cultures, and everything else that is used to divide us and emphasize those attributes that unite us. Those who are solving money and solving global digital identity should be supported. They seek to author a more fluid and participative world for the greatest number of people.
A United Earth is a necessary precondition for Post Scarcity & Space Age
We should not explore space before we are united into one human race. Unification of the earth gives us a better shot at progress towards a Post Scarcity Society as well as the Space Age.
It would be folly to bring ourselves into the Space Age as disparate techno-advanced states of the earth. Divided we fall, united we stand, if we are to encounter any threats there. We must be united here on earth before venturing yonder.
Space technology without unity has the potential to create techno-barbarians who could pose a greater danger on earth than climate change.
Globally Owned and Operated Companies
The world’s economic system was built on competition. It now needs to be rebuilt, based on collaboration.
Since we are all shareholders of the earth, isn’t it time to have companies that operate on a global scale that are owned by all of us, on a global scale?
The idea of collaboration-based globally owned corporations sounds insane because it has never been tried. Competition is great because it brings variety to the market and keeps others in check. This is mostly true but not always true. The type of competition we have seen lately in saturated markets doesn't really bring any meaningful variety. Aside from the ‘fake’ competition, the primary issue is that we (the earth and all who are in it) cannot really afford the variety and competition. Competitive forces are wasteful. The wasteful competition is a death drive. It is a rush to damnation.
We have to halt the death drive. We have to slow down the rush to damnation. Doing so requires us to create globally owned companies in a very different from the exclusionary global giants that are owned via equity markets, where potentially everyone can own but realistically only a few actually afford to own.
Building globally owned companies, where everyone on earth is a shareholder by virtue of being an earthling requires “thoughts” and time to work out the best mechanisms. It obviously must start as smaller concepts that can then be scaled from smaller geographies to larger geographies and eventually to the entire world.
We are all shareholders.