Why getting past the Tarzan world-view will sharpen your economic vision
Hey Brett, I loved this piece to the extent that I have shared it both selectively and widely, including adding it to the explanatory links on my own site - thanks!
Fyi, there were just two sentences that I found myself stumbling over and re-reading several times to try to understand, which might accordingly be worth a clarifying polish, if you're so inclined:
"This does not mean you constantly interact with every single person in that battery, but it does mean that everyone experiences a permanent requirement – on average – to fire up latent connections to the battery, even if the people who make it up appear to you as strangers."
"It is only when you ignore this fantasy of autonomy, however, that you will see that it is everyone who you are pushing past that is creating much of the pull that will lock-in monetary systems like a vacuum."
Excellent read! The Tarzan vs Mowgli approach is a neat way to capture some of the more complex points regarding the origins of money and the role it plays within our system. Regarding Bitcoin, I'd argue (and I'm sure you would agree) that choosing their Suite was an intentional design choice. In creating a psuedo-commodity system optimized for the Tarzan Suite there was an inherent hope that this would spur an abandonment from the Mowgli Suite simply by presenting a (theoretically) technically superior monetary system.
Moving beyond Bitcoin, I wonder how other cryptosystems or crypto inspired distributed ledger systems, adapted to the Mowgli Suite present an opportunity for change. There are plenty of ideas in crypto that offer compelling ideas, such as direct ownership, peer-to-peer exchange, dynamic assets and contracts, digitally streamlined services etc.
Great article, good motivation for further thinking.
Insightful read! I have always been quite skeptic of cryptomaniacs. Never saw cryptocurrency as a bubble waiting to get burst but never saw it replacing the current monetary system as well. This particular piece of writing actually provided ammunition to the ongoing debates happening all over the world on the infallibility and inevitability of crypto. Happy to get hold of the X-Ray vision- thanks!
Hi Brett, my name es Luis Salas Rodríguez. I am from Venezuela. Excuse my not so good English. But I have read and followed you and I would like to exchange with you about the Venezuelan experience with the bolivar, the petro (the public cryptocurrency), the hyperinflation, dollarization and the disappearance of cash with the recent conversion to the digital bolivar. My mail is email@example.com
Really enjoyed this one! Also, might be interesting to note that from my reading of "the master and his emissary" by Iain McGilchrist - the Tarzan view maps almost perfectly to a left hemispheric take on the world vs the Mowgli view which maps to a right hemispheric take.
Its a really good (but dense) read which tries to weave together an overview of the current literature on hemispheric differences, the philosophy of (mainly) Heidegger and the wide sweep of western history highlighting the slow triumph (and tyranny) of the left hemisphere's view of the world over the right.
This was fantastic!
Interesting and thought-provoking as always!
I still share this article on a fairly regular basis... it really is a gift that keeps giving. Thanks Brett!