Crossroads 2021: Seizing the opportunity presented by the 4th industrial revolution

I’ve been finding it difficult to write on this blog lately, but for a good reason: the movement to push back against tyranny and to exit the globalists’ system seems to be picking up pace. Telegram is teeming with off-grid groups and community farm projects, protest groups and independent news sites, and I expect the other platforms are too.

This is all very good news, and I am enjoying not feeling the pressure to shout from the rooftops. People are waking up and spontaneously coming together at their own pace, which is exactly how it should be.

For my part, I have started to think about what sort of communities we want to form. This was prompted by noticing that already those of us who are pioneering off-grid groups are falling into the globalists’ trap of valuing members of our new communities based solely on their economic value. If you’re a big burly guy able to chop wood, or a healthy young woman willing to dig fields, you’re in. If you’re elderly or disabled or vulnerable in some way, you may be tolerated in conversation but the underlying message is that there won’t be room for you down on the farm.

One guy looking to start a co-op farm was so blunt as to say: “either you contribute in terms of work or you buy in financially.” This is the wrong approach, and its roots are in the world we’re currently living in.

Since the industrial revolution there has been a trend toward valuing people not as human beings but as economic units. This started in the mills and factories of England in which workers were prized only for their production value, but has evolved over time into our current consumer culture.

Mechanised work forces mean cheaper production costs, which in turn means lower prices. This is why you can now buy shoes for a tenner and throw them away after a season, or a set of plates from IKEA for just a few quid, and don’t mind if you break them.

However, we are now reaching the inevitable end-point of this trajectory. Mechanisation through robotics is already rendering most minimum wage jobs obsolete. Why train a factory or service worker up to do a job imperfectly when you can buy a robot instead? A robot will flip burgers perfectly every time without dropping a single one on the floor, and they won’t take any bathroom breaks. They’ll even tell the customer to have a nice day.

This is the challenge the fourth industrial revolution represents. In a speech at Davos last year, historian Yuval Noah Harari laid it out thus:

Whereas in the past, humans had to struggle against exploitation, in the 21st century, the really big struggle will be against irrelevance. And it’s much worse to be irrelevant than to be exploited. 

Those who fail in the struggle against irrelevance would constitute a new useless class. People who are useless, not from the viewpoint of their friends and family of course, but useless from the viewpoint of the economic and political system. And this useless class will be separated by an ever-growing gap from the ever more powerful elite. 

A new useless class. That is how the globalists see us. Their solution is to shift everyone at the lower end of society onto a universal minimum wage – that is why the economy has been crashed and small businesses are being driven under, and why the Great Reset is being rolled out.

Unlike the Great Reset, the fourth industrial revolution is not a plan or a plot, it’s an inevitable progression in human technology. Given its capacity to meet our basic needs at an almost negligible cost, it offers a huge opportunity — if we can steer the direction of events our way.

The globalists’ weakness is that they view everything, humans included, purely in terms of resources. A person isn’t a living being with hopes, desires, fears, it is merely a unit of production which can be leveraged to drive the economy and make the elites rich. They have no other notion of human value, and their plans betray them. Nowhere in all the expensively crafted videos and glossy brochures for the Great Reset, Smart Cities or any other of their plans have I seen even a nod toward human creativity or spontaneity. All of it is presented in terms of efficiency, economics, governance, and planning.

This is their blind spot, their Achilles heel. It is by striking there that we will overcome them.

We need to go in the polar opposite direction. Where they see humans only in terms of their output, we must cherish each individual for what they can do.

The question to ask people when looking to put together a new collective or community isn’t: “How much can you do?”, it’s “Are you willing to do what you can?” The phrasing may seem insignificant, but the assumptions underlying each question couldn’t be further apart.

The first is exclusive: if you meet our criteria you’re in, and those who don’t make the grade are expendable. Tough luck, but it’s a dog-eat-dog world out there. This is the globalists’ worldview.

The second is inclusive: all are welcome provided they play their part within the community, however small that may be. This is the worldview described in Mark 12:

41 Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. 42 But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.

43 Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”

This worldview must be one of the central pillars of our founding ethos as we create our new communities. If we don’t incorporate it from the start, it will not be added in later as there is always a shortage, a pressing need, a resource crisis that can be pointed to in order to exclude some for the good of others – as the evil slogan ‘Protect the NHS!’ reminds us on a daily basis.

Another of the central pillars must be to value human made artifacts. This will be the basis of our economy, once we get past subsistence levels. Already we see this happening as an outcome of the early stages of the fourth industrial revolution: identical white plates made in mechanised factories cost 50p each; hand painted Emma Bridgewater plates cost £20 each.

Why? Partly because a factory can churn out more identical white plates than hand-painted plates per hour, but also because people are willing to pay out for the artisan plates. We instinctively recognise a value in these items beyond their utility — after all, both plates perform the exact same function — and are willing to pay for it.

This has always been the case in human history. One of the earliest signs of civilization, in prehistoric man, was the tendency to decorate tools. This continued for thousands of years. Go into any antiques store or museum and you will find room upon room of chairs with flourishes and scrolls, tables with carved legs, dressers with inlaid decorative work and hooks with finely turned ironwork. Front doors had carved designs, windows had decorative frames, homes had decorative brickwork, churches had painted ceilings, municipal buildings had friezes and artworks depicting the trades of the town, and the people involved in them. It is only in our utilitarian society that all of this has fallen by the wayside, that tables are one plank of wood on four square pillars, and the chairs too.

I would like to see communities emerge in which there is room for all: the strong and healthy working the fields and fishing, while the young and old and less able turn once again to pottering among the herb gardens, and return to crafting. Then a really vibrant barter economy can be created, in which an axe won’t just be prized for the sharpness of its blade, but for the fine details carved into the handle.

We stand at a crossroads. Our technology has now advanced to a level that offers a choice of terrifying proportions: on the one hand we can go down the globalists’ route of making humanity defunct, with all the wealth of the world in the hands of a very few.

On the other, we can, for the first time in history, achieve true human flourishing, with every person fully included and able to realise their full potential.

Which path will we choose?

We now have a Telegram channel, and a Telegram group, so you can keep up to date with every blog and discuss the implications with like-minded people.

You can now buy my novel The Book of Niv: A Modern Bible Story in print and ebook. It is written for these times, for those who have been called to “Play up! Play up! And play the game!”