The State

Is 'The State' the bootstrap of society to supersociety?

In this chapter I will discuss this possibility and look at questions that are brought up if it is.

For a system to bootstrap we must look at the economics of a system, the economics of the more advanced system, and ask if the economics are based on different forms of value. If they are different then a bootstrap has occurred. If they are not different then a bootstrap has not occurred and the system has just evolved to a higher level within an economy, possibly, with a higher level of quality. We may still have found a place where we can make a morality judgment because the level is higher in the cascade, but if the economics haven't changed it is not a bootstrap.

In the societal layer we find resources being the unit of value. Possessing resources, having access to resources, seeking out resources are the activities that drive the societal system.

The state is clearly a higher organization of society. But are the economics different? We see at high levels of the nation state some evidence of an economics of 'power'. How many Senators can be brought to bear on an issue? Ultimately, I don't believe this is a new form of economics though. The decision makers in nation states currently still rely on resources, monetary campaign donations in the US, for their power. Power is still a function of, and therefore directly related to, the resources controlled at a certain level of society.

If the State were to separate itself from the effect of resource allocation it may be able to bootstrap. One area where see some leaning this way is with the US Supreme Court. Because this court has lifetime appointments the justices are able to make decisions independent of resource allocation. Unfortunately this is also one of the areas of government where we have the least amount of information of how decisions are made. Cameras aren't allowed in and the interplay of decision making is generally only recorded after the fact in opinions. We completely miss out on the process and what the actual unit of value is that moves an opinion one way or the other.

Let’s consider for a moment that society reaches a point where the actors in the state are selected by lot in a way that insures that currently controlling more resources doesn't impact your selectability. What would these resource independent statesmen involve themselves in? The population would demand that they engage in the allocation and protection of resources. More of the same.

It is my conclusion that the State is not a bootstrap to supersociety. That does not mean that the state is not integral to a bootstrap to the supersociety. In fact our conclusion is that in order for society to bootstrap to a supersociety, resource allocation and use needs to be as optimized as possible. To reach this conclusion we will look at the economics of the previous bootstrap and then explore how to best position society and the state to emulate these process of these economies reaching bootstrap.

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