I'd like to write something about making time. In all of the futures we deserve, we need to be able to trade away at least some of our transactional commitments (such as work) for time. Maybe we will in the future have different sorts of time in our lives (some about money exchange, some about social exchange, some about personal exchange). But the notion that increased productive capacity of our economies could be traded for more time is one of the most mocked futures predictions there is. Keynes' essay about the world of his grandchildren (set in 2030) is regularly derided, mostly I suspect by people who haven't read it. There's a story in here, somewhere, about how the world that Keynes foresaw in 1931 might come to pass. It is I suspect, stalked by the ghost of Ivan Illich. How do we keep markets without the drivers of accumulation that define our working worlds in 2010? How do we recover the holidays that we enjoyed in the Middle Ages, and which we lost with the Industrial Revolution? And how do we do either of those things without lapsing into a prelapsarian longing that discredits the whole endeavour?
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