Quick Overview

Thomas Schindler
3 min readJul 24, 2023


(1) We produce money at exponential rates (M3 doubles every 10 years) and back this money with GDP (doubling every 20 years). Since GDP ultimately about how many atoms can be moved by a part of the world in a given timeframe and moving atoms requires energy, the energy requirements also grow exponentially, doubling every 30 years. (Currently we are running on 19TW 85% of which come from fossil fuels — 100 billion barrel oil equivalents per year). The material requirements for switching into a renewable/rebuildable energy regime exceed the resources on this planet. While the currently financially rich countries of the world can surely make this happen for themselves, they will leave everyone else behind. Of course there is a possibility of a fusion-break through or tectonic plate drilling with plasma drills for geothermal or other innovations. The more centralised control over these, the higher the probabilty for autocratic systems and — even worse: we will keep adding heat to the system making the planet uninhabitable in 300 years, roughly.

(2) Both, politics and the economy ultimately measure their success by GDP growth (often trough proxies like job security or inflation management), holding the dependencies outlined in (1) in place.

(3) This combination of dependencies constitutes a multipolar trap that is almost impossible to escape. Internally actors will lose if they try to not compete on the central success-metrics, externally competing systems (eg: nation states) will lose if they change their central-success metric.

(4) This is the mechanism at the core of the tragedy of the commons, leading to exploitation of planet and people even if no single individual wants to engage in such exploitation. This will ultimately lead to the self-termination of the system as it destroys its own conditions for existence.

(5) It is possible to step out of this game and play an entirely new game. This game then might put LIFE at the center. If that is so, then:

(6) Energy would come from the big fusion reactor in the sky that sends us 172.000 TW of energy for free and highly distributed.

(7) The economy would be based in heliogenic materials, building of patterns of biomimcry and employing sunlight, microorganisms, fungi, etc to create the material needs of individuals and collectives in a highly distributed and place-appropriate way. (The science for creating anything between food and compute exists). This would lead to unseen levels of souvereignty.

(8) Instead of using money as a store of value, souvereign humans understand that the store of value ultimately is a healthy natural and social environment, putting care for those dimensions at the center of the modes of exchange.

(9) And finally, based on souvereignty and mutual care, we can elevate beyond the narrow horizon of our own little world and develop collective agency in steering ourselves as a species as proper stewards of our planet, which is one of the two options an apex predator has: kill itself (r-selected) or care for the environment (k-selected).