And that a primary goal should be that undeveloped countries should be able to cheaply buy the energy they need to improve their way of life from orbital power stations.

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Basically he's saying space habitats and the industries associated with them should be decentralized and sustainable, except those words probably weren't in the vernacular at the time.

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Sustainability, decentralization, space, long 

"I would put them in the form of guiding principles:

1. A proposal to improve the human condition makes sense only if, in the long term, it has the potential to give all people, whatever their place of birth, access to the energy and materials needed for their progress.

2. A technical 'improvement' is more likely to be beneficial if it reduces rather than increases the concentration of power and control.

3. Improvements are of value if they tend to reduce the scale of cities, industries, and economic systems to small size, so that bureaucracies become less important and direct human contact becomes more easy and effective.

4. A worthwhile line of technical development must have a useful lifetime 'without running into absurdities" of at least several hundred years.'"

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Sustainability, decentralization, space, long 

"Any technological solutions we employ to solve our problems must, though, retain their logic over a very long time-span. As E.F. Schumacher put it:

'Nothing makes sense unless its continuance for a long time can be projected without running into absurdities... there cannot be unlimited, generalized growth... Ever bigger machines, entailing ever bigger concentrations of economic power and exerting ever greater violence against the environment do not represent progress: they are a denial of wisdom.'

These considerations should be in our minds as we examine the technical suggestions contained in this book.

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Been reading Gerard O'Neill's book "The High Frontier" about solving Earth's resource problems by building habitats in orbit and moving some of our population, energy production, and heavy industry up there where it can't pollute the Earth. He writes up some guiding principles for ensuring this change will be a positive one. 

"From a political and moral viewpoint, we in the developed nations bear a responsibility for the plunder of the past centuries. It is unlikely, though, that a large segment of the population in the advanced countries is going to reduce its living standard by a substantial amount, voluntarily, in order to share the energy wealth of Earth with the emerging nations. As I will show, there may be an acceptable alternative: a way in which inexpensive, inexhaustible energy sources can be made available to the developing nations without self-denial on our part.

@puffinus_puffinus @eben Really didn't mean to stir up a firestorm with this post. I don't spend a lot of time on sunbeam.city because it usually doesn't feel like a solarpunk future is getting any closer. I was excited to see someone influential wanting to push the world in that direction.

I have no illusions about Bezos. If we let him be in charge of the future we'll be wage-slaves squealing under his boot. But O'Neill cylinders are decades away; there's a good chance he'll be retired or dead before they come about. Bezos is trying to build the infrastructure that will make orbital habitats possible. I want to encourage the construction of that infrastructure without allowing people like Bezos to control the habitats the rockets will service.

What would that look like, I wonder? We know we don't want full capitalist control, and yet construction in space will need a lot of capital. Do we want a socialist system? There are many of those. Which one? Something new?

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Jeff Bezos wants to preserve Earth, but he also wants to build space stations for people to live in. Some of the art has kind of a vibe to it.

Sunbeam City 🌻

Sunbeam City is a Libertarian Socialist solarpunk instance. It is ran democratically by a cooperative of like-minded individuals.