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Yesterday's Question - if you didn't catch it last night, here it is: http://djinni.livejournal.com/424119.ht
There are great answers! I suppose I should let you in on what sparked the question. I'm thinking about the differences between jobs people only do because they want or need the money, and what people do when they have a calling. And, I'm imagining a future where the sort of work for which money is the only incentive being done by machines, and where we've managed to overcome limited resources.
If we, as a planetary society, are able to eliminate scarcity, would we fall apart? I don't think so. I think more folks will be encouraged to find and follow their calling. But, I also think trade is a strong motivator for peace, and I think the potential for ideological conflicts and grabs for power would be really high. It's a strong calling for humans, to be a part of something greater than ourselves, and being part of an ideological group is a powerful way to accomplish that. I can imagine the sort of unshakeable, repressive regime that could take power, given the technological resources necessary to create the utopia I'm daydreaming about. It is a pretty creepy thought, but I keep returning to the idea that maybe the machines need to be put in charge of running the show - it's another job people do for the money, after all.