Fixing the System
I was doing some brainstorming today after talking to a non-science friend. She was asking me the obvious questions:
1. How did the system get so fucked up?
2. What could fix it at this point?
I wrote the following equations (this is how I think these days, rather than complete sentences):
science= technology + people
technology= people + training + resources
people= training + technical proficiency + creativity + communication skills + desire + rewards
training= books + lectures + experience + place to do it + toys to do it with + making mistakes + feedback
What's the goal?
- greater output (faster progress): cure disease, fix pollution, space travel, easier day-to-day, understand the meaning of life and how everything works. Fix the world.
- waste less money
- employ trained scientists instead of having them go to waste (and the money we spent training them)
Where does massive change come from?
from within: revolution of the proletariat
from without: government mandate (fascism?)
Better to do it fast or slow?
realistic: will be slow to implement even if it's easy to throw out the old system all at once.
idealistic: slow risks not going through with it or not making drastic enough changes.
Why would it be slow to implement?
Because it would involve bureaucrats, and they can't do anything quickly.
Why do we need bureaucrats? What do bureaucrats do? Why would it be so bad if we got rid of them all?
- handle money distribution and arrange for infrastructure (construction, cleaning, building maintenance); handle lawsuits from uneducated public/offended religiosers.
- push paper around.
- it's a self-renewing system: they're good at keeping themselves in business. formula: create rules --> hire people to enforce them --> create conflicts --> hire people to resolve them
Why do we need rules?
because people would kill each other without them. i get that.
Why do we need so many rules and bureaucrats?
Because nobody can know it all in detail and they need something to help guide their decision-making (or prevent them from having to make decisions based on all the information at any given juncture).
Who should be in charge?
- not the bureaucrats!
- not the politicians!
- not solely the old established scientists
- input from young scientists is critical.