Easy answer: no. I find it interesting to think about the possibilities, however; to consider things that would be present or absent in Perfect World.
Food, for example: in Perfect World (PW), if we have an abundance of food, you can have some, and we will make do with less (quantity or variety) in order for that to happen. Why, after all, do we need so much food that is actually crap? Why are scarce resources used to create thirty different kinds of potato chips?
Because people buy it, is the answer I will receive. What if we stopped production of junk food, or only had one kind (one flavour of chips, one type of candy); what if we used those resources to make food for countries/cities that don’t have enough? What if we worked together to grow food in community groups, then shared with other groups in order to get variety, rather than mass-producing in silos? (I'm a terrible gardener, so you don't want to be in my group if this happens).
What if we were all vegetarian and used the land to grow food to feed people? Would we eat all of the remaining cows? Would they be for milk only? Should we even drink milk anymore—is it a waste of resources to feed the cows? Maybe goats make more sense, since they eat whatever we don’t want. This part of PW feels difficult: I love my milk, cheese and ice cream. And cows seem so friendly (although–fun fact–29 people were killed by cows in Canada between 2003-2012). Could the animals we now use for food become endangered? Would they need protection? How would the world’s people get adequate protein on a vegetarian diet?
I see a lot of pulses in our PW future.
Economics: I don’t understand enough about this to know how PW would run. Needless to say, some Albertans will be unhappy with the phase-out of cows and meat. The junk/fast food producers and soft drink manufacturers are not going to be happy. In PW, definitely no hoarding money or hidden money, no “offshore”, no small minority holding the purse strings of the world. Would there even be banks? Are banks a good thing? Maybe a bartering/trading system is better…but I feel there always be that one thing everyone covets, and then that becomes currency. Then again, maybe not, if everyone is sharing resources, especially food and shelter/space. Can the world exist without money? There will always be those who work harder than others, those who don’t pull their weight; how is conflict avoided?
Is there enough altruism in the world to accept a “lower” standard of living in order to allow others a chance? Could we somehow eliminate black market trade—how would that work? Prohibition and drug laws have been disastrous, but the alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, all seem to bring out the worst in people. Is the only way to eliminate these vices to destroy the sources? That would mean eliminating most fermentable foods (and isn't just about everything fermentable?), as well as natural plants like cannabis, tobacco, poppies, and so on. Pretty impossible, especially when you consider people in jails make alcohol in their toilets, using the fruit cups. To eliminate the vices, then, you need to eliminate the need for them. Maybe people don’t need the high if they are well fed, feel their lives are worthwhile, have shelter and support. Maybe we can all, in our small way, contribute to Perfect World.
Hi, I'm Karen. This space is a chance for me to get some of those notebook sessions out there: Motherhood, medicine, writers and writing, the state of the world. Non-published, sometimes non-polished, just a chance to open a discussion. Let me know what you think!