The Future is (Still) Ours

Jim Dempsey added this inspired and thoughtful comment which I felt should be foregrounded here in the archives.

After reading this post I decided to purchase the book The Future is Ours.

It was extremely interesting and covered the banking system, money, inflation, deflation and basic stabilizing the economy but with a focus on allowing all citizens to have enough money/buying power as they needed to get by. This current economic crisis that began in 2008 is very relevant to the discussion in the book. It is clear that some of the solutions in the book are based on economic theories and are used to varying extent in our current economy. Likewise infrastructure spending is recommended as a mechanism to increase the money supply when excess capacity exists, but no money in the system to access this capacity. It is quite interesting because economics is about human energy or ability and the interaction between humans in the utilization of their energy or goods/services is the essense of economics.

In the quotes and theories section of the book Shamcher has questions and then answers them. One is: “How do most of us want it to be?” The answer is “Prosperous, adventurous, unrestricted, secure. We want opportunities for realizing our abilities and resources. We want free choice in every walk of life, no shortages in our stream of supplies, good and happy neighbors”

Economics is about people not money. Economic instability creates imbalance and can cause problems for all society. We need to work towards economic balance for all this will allow our minds to be free to explore more important areas of human existance.

The chapter quoted in this blog on clearing centres was of extreme interest to me. While Shamcher discusses inflation, deflation, deficits, surpluses, money supply, etc. and the associated solutions to a balanced system. The clearing system discussed above was interwoven into the discussion and its benefit of minimum inflationary impact on the money system was very interesting.

But more interesting was the idea of a mechanism for people/businesses to get credit for goods/services and use these to access others goods/services through a clearing system. I recognized this as a way to generate an economy and not being dependent on the money supply. How many communities are money poor but human energy rich and if these energies could be tapped through a clearing system described in this posting we could allow people/businesses to access the goods/services they require in exchange for their goods/services therebye rejuvenating the community and its economy.

Another quick thought is look at developing countries and specifically places like Afganistan or Iraq or any other country in distress. Many of the problems stem from lack of jobs which creates money to purchase the goods/services needed to survive. A bank where people could deposit goods/service credits and exchange with others for their requirements would create an economy from the human energy in these places. Likewise it would strengthen the community as they would be creating most of their needs internally.

Another interesting quote from Shamcher in the book is: “The scientific method can be used to explore the the atom, but let it be applied to human affairs and at once the pressure of …. party loyalty, of nationalism, or merely of established customs prevent the acceptance of valid conclusions. It is the full revelation of the spirit of science, and the fact that it envisages all of civilization and not merely useful gadgets that will bring us to the age of science. To call on present science for help is futile. To call on politicians, lawyers, clergymen, economists, is equally futile until they have learned, from science perhaps, the spirit and method of research.”

The interesting thing about this quote for me is that it suggests that we have to understand research the concept of critical thinking and looking at the facts and coming to a conclusion that makes sense.

The “Future is Ours” discusses the facts and issues trying to create understanding. There is so much that needs to happen in the world and the process of faciliating this is through researching and understanding topics and coming to balanced approachs that can be tested and adjusted helping stablize humanity.

Within the context of the above context I am currently interested in two areas of research and development:

1. The clearing bank model: I am interested in more information on this topic with the goal of fully understanding the various models available. I then plan to develop a framework for these type of bank(s) that could be used to start actual banks. I then hope to start a bank of this type and work with others to do the same. If anyone has further information on these types of banks from the past or current models please let me know.

2. The second area is the topic of research and development or the scientific model. More specifically this is an area I have been interested in a while in conjunction with some reading I have been doing of Harold Innis works on communication and media as well as some thoughts regarding frameworks for creating venues for dialogue on topics for those interested in researching and developing thoughts and projects in specific areas of human/planetary/universal interest.

Again I have a similiar idea of development of a framework for dialogue on topics through multiple medias that could help progress thought and development patterns influencing social/human development. The “spirit and method of research” Shamcher quotes aligned with the ideas regarding dialogue and information that have been percolating in my mind lately.

If anyone has any interest in either of these areas or ideas please feel free to contact me for further discussion. I have started writing on # 2 and plan on working on #1 in the near future, further information will be available somewhere on the internet as they progress. I can be reached at jim.dempsey@shaw.ca.

To SAM: Sufis, OTEC

12 October 1963

My dear Sam,

Your welcome letter came just as I was trying to find where Evelyn had hidden your former letter with your address. I was going to write you that your great success and following will be with other intellectuals than those with whom you now have battle, though the battle serves the purpose of attracting attention. I see from your letter that you received my message through the air as sufis should. Apart from that you have other messages for me which you have not written.

In some respects you are the greatest living sufi (and in other respects l am) but just for that reason it seems, as you say, unwise to adorn yourself with a title such as murshid, here in America, for it will repel more than it attracts. A few will see in you more than that and the more the less ostentatious you are — yet, in a society such as ours a certain ostentation is required to have working chance.

While I had lengthy correspondence with Indian government, now Portugal seems to become the first to try out Some of my special sea water conversion methods — and what irony! India will come to learn at the feet of Portuguese! Not directly and knowingly perhaps, but actually, technically. But is just a small part of my life as horticulture is with you.

Back to titles again: I agree with Vilayat when he does not call himself nor wishes any one else to call himself even Murshid, far less Pir-O-Murshid — in reverence to great Inayat Khan. When Ali Khan called himself Pir-O-Murshid that was between God and himself, and not my concern but I deeply prefer Vilayat’s words, although in some respects Vilayat is greater than his father or, should I say, more appropriate for delivering the message in the Western World — all of which was according to Inayat’s wishes.

Do not worry about how the established sufis will receive you or us. They have no duty to receive anybody nor do we have any duty or wish to be received. We live among us and act and take what reaction comes and often I have felt new and hitherto unheard of souls will carry the burden onwards. Even at an early stage many old sufis who had considered lnayat their personal pet, left in disgust when there was talk of a world message and a world teaching. Others left when Maheboob and Ali took over — for Vilayat (which was even better, the free and large side of the sufi movement) or for private practice as Van Tuyll, or for no more sufis at all.

I am going to Cleveland 25th, then on to New York. Tell me all about these centers. In New York I do not know a single remaining sufi any more. Are there any?

Shamcher

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

To SAM: OTEC and Middle East, 2

21 November 1958

My dear Sam:

Yes, indeed, it’s about time Nasser had some expert advice on water. However, it may be the only place in the Middle East where specifically the thermal difference will be a cinch is at the Dead Sea. This is bordered jointly by Israel and — is it Jordan? Is any of the Dead Sea on Nasser’s property? If so we can do business. But anyway, there should be grand survey of his whole area in regard to water. So let’s get in touch with Dr. Schawarbi or whoever may be the best link. Though as the world’ s leading expert on certain types of sea water conversion I could command the highest fees, I would have no such thought with Nasser but would go just on expenses paid and so that the family can live in their modest way — either going along (best) or staying here. But it shouldn’t wait much longer.

Whoever he now has as advisers, of whatever nation, there is none who can advise him so accurately on these matters, except professor Howe, Mr. Beau of France or myself.

You should perhaps write Nasser directly, in addition to whatever his envoys may accomplish with us.

Israel has not, as you think, a good method for sea water conversion but a certain Zarkin, a sincere but impractical fanatic, has inveigled them to try a freezing process. On the other hand, Mr. Beau has talked to them about a Dead Sea plant on thermal difference principle which would be excellent if they accept.

Very interesting to hear about your writings and experiences. Prevail upon Peter to go start build the temple.

Family greets you fondly

Shamcher

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

To SAM: OTEC and Middle East

1 Aug 58

Dear Sam (but I ought to have noted your sufi name including Mullah, the enlightened one)

It was delightful to read you again (as the French say) and hear of your continued interest in water. Yes, you are so right, while the foreigner’s interest in the Middle East (most Europeans and to some extent Americans) is oil, their own interest is water and also simple plain friendship as a former school teacher in Iraq said here. But we often act as the raw recruit who asked an oncoming person three times quickly “Friend or foe” and then shot, not waiting even for an answer.

Of course, a wise man never asks are you friend or foe but he makes friends, even of the foes, and in the waiting time, before they know they are friends he forgives and sees the future must, “for they know not what they do.”

The specific approach to sea water conversion I am concerned with (and which is the only cheap way so far) is only applicable under certain natural conditions including: Tropical enough to have 15-20 centigrade temp. diff between surface and 500-1000 meter depth and steep enough bottom slope to reach depth required not more than five miles from shore. Pakistan would most probably meet these requirements. But though after our meetings with Pak. officials in SF I made the whole Pakistan embassy in Paris meet my French friends in Paris last year, and though the commercial attaché at the embassy was both enthused and insistent on alerting his government — no measurements to make this point sure has as yet been made.

As to Egypt most coast lines have very faint slope so I am suspicious the method may not apply there but again, no measurement has been made to make sure. But for this reason the Aswan dam may be right for Egypt and I believe we should have helped finance it in spite of all. We are running around guessing who are our friends instead of making them so — making not meaning simply giving or financing dams of course, but above all feeling and knowing that they are friends, actual or potential.

When you wrote I had been thinking about you for a long time, thinking whether to write you and ask whether you would come here help establish or rather expand the sufi cause which has gone slowly, but I thought that perhaps SF was more important and your natural hunting ground. Have you caused Peter to establish and run a center yet? He has all the necessary qualities including stamina, silence and punctuality. SF is a natural center, nationally unique. Seattle is a much tougher spot, with loads of unsound spiritualism, racial bigotry — therefore sufism much needed but also in difficulty finding suitable people and getting a hearing and a setting. Please marry the Karachi fiancé and get things going.

Apropos Peter: We have sent him letters and things, no reply, so I thought he had gone to Paris or perhaps we know not right address? Please contact for us. All here greets you warmly

Shamcher

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

OTEC

Very late in my life, in 48 when I was 52 years old… I had chosen engineering before I knew Inayat Khan. In fact, I didn’t know what I wanted to study. My father asked me and I said, “Well, something in the line of physics, medicine, geology, jusrisprudence, the whole lot.” And finally I had to concentrate on one thing so I took engineering because then you can travel and see things in various countries, and I wanted to travel, I wanted to see if the world was round. So one time I when I was the managing director of a small company, and I was in Paris I saw in the National Science Foundation of France a story about energy from the ocean. There were tides, waves, but especially the temperature difference between surface water and deep water. You put in a steam engine there. The warm water of the surface near the tropics evaporates, boils in a boiler, when you lower the pressure, when you pump air out. That steam that develops from this boiling runs a turbine, the turbine runs a generator. And after the turbine, the steam is condensed and this steam apart from being condensed is then fresh water. So you do two things with this machine: you produce energy and water. In California we had a great water shortage at that time. We still have but we have forgotten that, now we have a power shortage. Our power and water government agencies cannot cooperate, they have nothing to do with each other. That is one reason why it is so difficult to promote OTEC. Anyway, I dropped everything else when I found out about this, I said to myself, “This is what the world needs. This is what California needs, the United States, Canada, the world.”

(From a talk given in the late ’70s)

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

It’s Not Enough to Sit There

Should we talk about it at all? Or should we keep meditating upon the light? One sufi, the same Sam Lewis, said, “In order to be a masterful sufi, in order to become really a light, you have to go into the darkness and fight the darkness.” Its not enough to sit there and meditate upon the light and do all these things. Well, if you are concerned mainly with yourself and your progress, that’s all you can do. but if you understand the reality of the whole flowing universe, you are not satisfied with helping yourself, you must bring everybody with you. As it is said in the Buddhist scripture, before the Buddha can go up to heaven he had to have the whole humanity with him. Well this is sufism essentially. It has been expressed as a difference between sufism and yoga. That isn’t quite true anymore because the better yogis also have this view, you must have the whole humanity with you.

So a real yogi or a real sufi isn’t the least bit interested in doing phenomenal things. He is interested in bringing humanity forward – by delving into dirty economics, war-mongering, energy, food supplies.

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

Nuclear Power is not an Option

Waste products, as they say, will not kill these people who sit in powerful postions today. They will not be killed, perhaps not even hurt. Their children, and your children and my children and the children’s children – they will not only be hurt they will be dying, but slowly, very very painfully. Nauseatingly. That is what nuclear plants do, and that is why it is one of the greatest crimes in the history of mankind that we permit one more nuclear plant to be built. And that has to be realized.

—–

We have never had appreciation of nuclear technology – it is immature technology altogether. I am to blame myself, because I didn’t know that when I went to Tunisia as head of the United Nations mission in 1963. I knew about OTEC, I had worked with it and seen no result. And we needed plants for power production and desalted water in Tunisia. And since nobody wanted to build OTEC and there was no firm that offered to build it, I proposed, I admit, a nuclear plant, I didn’t know any better. It was after that that we began to realize how completely immature this technology is, how completely uninvestigated are the treatment of nuclear waste and the treatment of a plant who has run its life and is ready to be shut down. There is no way to shut it down. You can cover it with layers and layers of concrete – it doesn’t matter, the radiation will go through it.

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

Shamcher in LA, 1980

From Rabbi Ivan (Raqib) Ickovits:

Dear folks:

Interestingly, many years ago, i had the privilege of hosting Shamcher when he came to LA to speak with some folks at a Rand Offshoot in Marina Del Rey. I think it was in early 1980 or 1981. I was a working physicist at that time working either for Jet Prop Labs in Pasadena on a Mars lander, or at Hughes Aircraft in Culver City on some detailed F18 radar or deep space surveillance system. Shamcher stayed with Tajali and myself at our home in Brentwood and i escorted him to his meeting with the project managers at PRI or some other alphabet offshoot from Rand trying to provide them with enough data to make OTEC feasible for a prototype construction amd convince them to allocate Govt research funds to fund a small scale effort. I don’t know how successful he was with this, but the intensity, focus and dedication he threw into the effort was awesome.

Some years later when Tajali and i had one of our private dinners with Pir Vilayat and Mary in Europe, i remember they spoke of Shamcher in hushed tones as the esoteric head of the esoteric school for many
years.

Going where the eagles fly,

Raqib

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)

CARTER SIGNS OTEC BILL INTO LAW

From the Solar OCEAN ENERGY Liaison

INCORPORATING The OTEC Liaison
VOLUME 4 NUMBER 6
June 1980

CARTER SIGNS OTEC BILL INTO LAW

On July 17th President Carter signed into law the finalized version of the Matsunaga-Fuqua bill. Re-numbered HR 7474, the completed act is a restoration of the original versions initiated by Senator Spark Matsunaga as S 1380 and Representative Fuqua as HR 5796. With Carter’s signature it has now become Public Law Number 96-310. The entire text of the President’s statement regarding the bill appears in this issue. While the passage into law now commits the United States Government to a national goal of 10,000 megawatts from OTEC systems by 1999, as well as providing funding (on a cost-sharing basis) for two OTEC pilot plants, the other “half” of major OTEC legislation is also near completion. The Studds-Inouye bill, initiated by Representative Studds as HR 6154 and Senator
Inouye as S 2492, deals with licensing of OTEC plants and loan guarantees, and as of July 22nd is on President Carter’s desk for signature.

As this issue goes to press, the President has ten days to either sign or veto the bill or, in the absence of his approval, allow it to automatically become law after the 10-day limitation has elapsed. While there is always the possibility of a veto, it is doubtfui, since the Studds-Inouye bill would not affect the budget, and since Senator Inouye heads the Rules Committee at the forthcoming Democratic Convention.

Highlights of the final versions of both bills will be excerpted in the next issue of Ocean Energy.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE JULY 18TH, 1980
OFFICE OF THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY
THE WHITE HOUSE

STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

I HAVE SIGNED HR 7474, THE OCEAN THERMAL ENERGY CONVERSION RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, AND DEMONSTRATION ACT, A BILL TO ESTABLlSH WITHIN THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY AN ACCELERATED RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM TO FOSTER THE EARLY USE OF OCEAN THERMAL ENERGY CONVERSION FACILITIES.

SENATOR MATSUNAGA AND REPRESENTATIVE FUQUA ARE TO BE COMMENDED FOR RECOGNIZING THE POTENTIAL CONTRIBUTION THAT RENEWABLE ENERGY RESOURCES CAN MAKE IN MEETING OUR NATION’S LONGTERM ENERGY NEEDS. THE BILL ESTABLlSHES A LONG-TERM NATIONAL GOAL OF 10,000 MEGAWATTS OF ELECTRICAL CAPACITY, OR ENERGY PRODUCT EOUIVALENT, FROM OTEC SYSTEMS BY THE YEAR 1999. IN ORDER TO ACHIEVE THIS GOAL, AS WELL AS INTERMEDIATE GOALS, AND TO FACILITATE THE DEVELOPMENT OF AN INDUSTRIAL BASE FOR OTEC TECHNOLOGY, THE BILL AUTHORIZES THE SECRETARY OF ENERGY TO DESIGN, CONSTRUCT AND OPERATE TWO OTEC DEMONSTRATION FACILITIES ON A COST-SHARING BASIS.

IN IMPLEMENTING THE PROVISIONS OF THIS BILL, THE DEPARTMENT WILL CARRY OUT A MEASURED PROGRAM FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF OTEC TECHNOLOGY CONSISTENT WITH TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS AND SOUND FISCAL POLlCY. A MAJOR COMMITMENT BY THE PRIVATE SECTOR WILL BE INDISPENSABLE FOR SUCCESSFUL DEVELOPMENT OF OTEC TECHNOLOGY, AND THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WILL SEEK SIGNIFICANT COST SHARING BY THE PRIVATE SECTOR FOR THESE DEMONSTRATION FACILITIES.

SIGNED: JIMMY CARTER

S 2492: PASSED INTO PUBLIC LAW, 8/3/80

PL96–320
(96th Congress; 320th Bill Passed)

(Click here for a random post from somewhere else in this blog.)