08 December 2012

Day 152: Linux proves Profit Motive does not Provide the Best Result

One of the main arguments that has been put forward in terms of why we have to hold on to a profit-based economic system, is that - apparently - people are not motivated to perform to the best of their ability if there is no form of monetary reward attached to it.

If that were the case, then who can explain the Linux phenomenon?

The Linux operating system and software are assembled under the model of free and open source software development and distribution. It means that everyone who is capable and interested can be a part of designing the products and it can be freely used, modified and re-distributed by anyone.

It's done by volunteers for the betterment of everyone. So - then the question: does it produce good results? Well -the following should answer that question:

"The Linux kernel was originally developed as free kernel for Intel x86-based personal computers. It has since been ported to more computer hardware platforms than any other kernel. Linux based operating systems are the leading operating system type on servers and other big iron systems such as mainframe computers and supercomputers: more than 90% of today's 500 fastest supercomputers run some variant of Linux, including the 10 fastest. Linux also runs on embedded systems (devices where the operating system is typically built into the firmware and highly tailored to the system) such as mobile phones, tablet computers, network routers, televisions and video game consoles; the Android system in wide use on mobile devices is built on the Linux kernel."

The best computers on Earth run on some variant of Linux - that says something, right? I mean - computer technology is one of the main points we see as important in terms of 'advancements' in technology and most of these advancements are made by volunteers. That completely debunks the idea that you need to pay people and need an environment of competition for people to be creative and driven to achieve excellence.

Within the current system we've simply been brainwashed into believing that we shouldn't do anything unless we can get some type of monetary or material reward out of it. And you can prove to yourself that this is in fact brainwashing by looking back at your childhood - where you looked at what you wanted to be in the world - whether it was a farmer, a hair dresser, a doctor or a librarian - where you didn't factor in the point of money and wealth - because that didn't form part of your motivation. You simply looked at what you would enjoy doing and where you'd like to contribute and what you'd like to participate in. It's only when you got older that you started becoming lazy, because your passions were no longer considered and you were just expected to fall in line and 'get with the program'. In such a context, laziness is a form of giving up on yourself - because you see that the system does not really care about you and you see no way of changing that point - therefore, you become lethargic and decide to 'rebel' in a way - through only doing the bare minimum. And to get people to do the bare minimum - they bribe you with money - making it so that: if you don't do the bare minimum, you simply don't get money and you simply can't survive.

So - in changing the system from a worker-manufacturing system to a life-support system - these problems will mostly become irrelevant. For more perspective on this point, I suggest reading the Labour section on the Equal Money Wiki.

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