The Moment of Truth — September 28, 2003

The Human Credit

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As a descendant of the Old Testament patriarch Abraham, I have taken it upon myself to patent the old man’s greatest contribution to Western culture: monotheism. The patent was approved Thursday. Since then the world has run up a debt to me of about 32 trillion dollars in merchandising royalties. I will also be suing all Christian and Muslim institutions for pirating intellectual property. They have been peddling unauthorized knock-offs of monotheism for centuries.

Think it’s ridiculous? Well, tell that to the descendants of Galileo. They want ex-post-facto royalties for their ancestor’s universally acknowledged invention of the telescope and consequent innovations in astronomy. Their lawsuit claims a percentage of all wealth earned by the navies, armies and aerospace programs of the world since the Renaissance, including the wealth represented by their colonies in the New World, Africa, Asia and elsewhere. In fact, the total amount the Galileans are demanding exceeds the present wealth of the known universe.

But let’s face it, Galileo did take a substantial risk when he reported his confirmation of Copernicus’ theory that the sun was the center of our planetary system. The nation of Poland, however, is suing the Galileans for violating Copernicus’ copyright on the heliocentric model.

Now we all know the story of Einstein, how when he was working in a patent office in I’m guessing Switzerland he came up with the Special Theory of Relativity. And in the journal he kept at the time he wrote, “This is gonna make me rich!” Without the promise of great wealth, he certainly wouldn’t have wasted his time thinking about whether his face would appear in a mirror he was holding in front of him while flying at the speed of light. Only the profit motive could spur such a time-consuming thought experiment. It’s a little known fact that Einstein theorized not only that time is relative, but that it is also money. In his book for the lay public, Understanding Relativity, Einstein explains that he expected his family to receive a royalty payment of .5 cents for every nuclear reaction from the Manhattan Project onward into perpetuity and throughout the universe. They were also supposed to profit from sales of posters showing him thinking about things.

Meanwhile, singer Wayne Newton is suing a Florida woman named Shirley Leibnitz over who holds the copyright on calculus. Newton is also demanding back royalties he claims he is owed for every time any kind of body was either at rest or in motion.

To deal with all these crazy proprietary claims, humanity in its wisdom has come up with something called the Human Credit. The thinking behind the Human Credit is that all of humanity has contributed in part to the creation of the vast wealth and technology of the present day, and thus every human being is due a certain minimum share in that wealth, regardless of his or her worth in relation to the distribution of that wealth at the present moment.

Each human being, simply for being born human, will be allotted a certain amount of private living space that conforms to humane living standards in climate control, water, waste and energy management. Each human will be allotted access to health care sufficient to keep him or her at or above a minimum standard quality of life and to prevent negative public health consequences. Food and clothing allowing for the maintenance of said standard quality of life will also be made available. Intellectual and physical training will be offered sufficient to prepare him or her for whatever occupational position he or she shall see fit to strive toward. A minimum standard quality of infrastructure including public transportation, communications, environment and utilities shall be maintained as part of the Human Credit. In short, the Human Credit represents the maintenance of the public sphere and its resources under the assumption that a healthy public is requisite for a healthy climate of intellectual, moral and economic progress.

Where is all the money for this Human Credit going to come from? Coeval with the minimum standard quality of life, there is to be a maximum amount of wealth and control of resources beyond which any entity shall be required to contribute the excess toward the Human Credit. The necessity for recapitalization of collective commercial endeavors will be taken into account. Nevertheless, increases in productivity, regardless of whether due to technological innovation or simply more energetic activity on the part of labor, shall be distributed in part via the Human Credit in the form of leisure time rather than solely in monetary awards to upper-level management and shareholders. A minimum percentage of all increased productivity shall be added to the leisure time allotted to every human by the Human Credit, as will the same percentage be removed from it should productivity slump.

Thus, the results of economic productivity will be directly felt by all of us participating in the collective effort of making the human society. No longer will the non-owning class bewilder the owners, insofar as two are separate, with their ingratitude for the owners’ contribution to the commonweal. Likewise will the owners come to understand the wealth-contributing benefits of a decently housed, healthy, educated populace with access to a well-maintained public infrastructure.

Actually, that’s a crock of crap. There will be no Human Credit. The WTO, the IMF, the World Bank, the Illuminati, and the International Organization of Political Puppetmasters and Economic Overlords unanimously vetoed it at their secret summit meeting in the Platinum Plus Dimension. Humans are to be presumed worthless until proven otherwise to someone with money. And regardless of our talents or achievements, the material rewards for human endeavor will go solely to whoever can secure the legal right to profit from them. Good luck, scum!

This has been the Moment of Truth. Good day!