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A Creative Class

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posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 12:26 PM
Ran across this bog this morning and thought it was a subject worth sharing here. I have never heard the term, creative class, and I hoped it meant more than 'starving artists,' but this guy is proposing that as our culture changes and evolves, using today's internet and technology, a creative class will rise and thrive, transforming the socio-economic system.
And here I thought creativity was being less and less nurtured and/or encouraged in schools and society.

And yet, at the same time, something is amiss. Much of this so-called Creative Class can only prosper by finding work within the current corporate infrastructure, resulting in very little actual creativity or innovation. The very ones who might create the necessary change in society must expend their time and energy worrying about “making a living.” Those who can keep a job have to sacrifice ideas that contradict the wishes of bosses and the company’s stockholders.

Corporate compromises, yea that can cramp ones creative style I suppose. But corporations have to at some point appreciate and utilize creativity for things as marketing and graphic design, generating a bit of distinction, making them unique amongst their competitors some how.

For those who have been diagnosed “abnormal” by our society, this problem is especially prevalent. Such people are variably labeled anti-social, eccentric, introverted, highly sensitive, ADD, bipolar, neuro-atypical, differently abled, gifted, or one of many other similar terms that have a derogatory effect. The trouble is that the only people who ever made any worthwhile changes in this world belonged to one of these categories.

It is a shame such negative connotations come with these labels, while at the same time, genius and individuality flourish within some of these folks. If we could plug them into something constructive, that is tailored for their processes and utilizes their abilities, it could be a win win.

The most creative visionaries often cannot function adequately in modern society. This makes it extremely hard to avoid unemployment, let alone to feed and shelter oneself. But admit that you feel this way, and you’re instantly labeled lazy, arrogant, elitist, etc. We’re evidently not ready to admit on a mass scale that the current definition of a “normal” human being is not only imaginary, but impossible.

I have experienced this, as a highly sensitive introvert, subtly shunned in some instances because I didn't 'play along.' And yes, imagination seems to not be as cultivated these days, with art programs being pulled from schools, everyone staring at shiny rectangles choking on information overload and preoccupied with social networks, continually feeding both their vanity and fears. I feel there is less vision these days, amongst both people and leaders.

t is time that we break out of this double-bind. One idea how to do that has sat dormant in the cultural underground for the last few decades. In 1969, R. Buckminster Fuller (a.k.a. Bucky Fuller) published his short volume Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth. As Fuller writes:

…we must give each human who is or becomes unemployed a life fellowship in research and development or in just simple thinking. Man must be able to dare to think truthfully and to act accordingly without fear of losing his franchise to live. [...] For every 100,000 employed in research and development, or just plain thinking, one probably will make a breakthrough that will more than pay for the other 99,999 fellowships.

Hear hear to this Buckey, I had never looked at it like this.

This will never be possible in a purely capitalistic system that runs according to the tenets of selfishness and greed — or the misapplied motto “survival of the fittest.” The Internet has allowed for certain non-traditional funding platforms, but the most popular ones are oriented around funding creative projects — not funding a creative life. And taking out any kind of loan seems dangerous when there’s no way to be sure about the possibility of paying it back.

Survival of the fittest should include creativity, imo because not only does it offer innovation for thriving, but it maintains a line of thought outside of the box, enabling ways to overcome paradoxes and social gridlock.

For some of us, a “job” or a “career” is not the answer. For some, it’s time to admit: “What I really need is help FUNDING MY EXISTENCE.” Fuller also used the term “mind fellowships.” His purpose was very clear:

Through the universal research and development fellowships, we’re going to start emancipating humanity from being muscle and reflex machines. We’re going to give everybody a chance to develop their most powerful mental and intuitive faculties. [...] What we want everybody to do is to think clearly.

Yea, my existence needs funding too.
Our intuition is growing stale and we have grown more reactive than proactive, trying to make ends meet and make sense of this world. Life is not black and white, so neither should the bulk of our approaches to things.

With this spirit in mind, let’s give birth to an online community designed to provide existential funding to the people who need it. Recipients will have to demonstrate what value they have contributed to society in the form of ideas, projects, art, innovation, social movements, etc. Donors will be able to choose which individuals interest them the most.

Surely creativity should be one of the items supported by things as philanthropy, and I would like to see creativity institutions start popping up more.

We’ve spent enough time talking about futuristic visions of society. Some feel an urgent drive to manifest it in reality. It is time to enable those people by funding their existence, allowing them to worry about more pressing matters — like changing the world.

Peace and creativity,

posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 12:29 PM
This was a really good post. Thanks for making it.

Unfortunately I think the US is heading into decline. A creative class is the flowering of a civilization on the upswing. I wish the US could support a creative class but I think we are reaching the crest and about to peak. As we fall apart again things are going to regress to a rougher state.

posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 12:39 PM
reply to post by Stadtsmasher

Man, if necessity is the mother of invention, then times are ripe for a shift in priorities, or at least a complimentary dose of vision and imagination. We are making great strides with advancing tech, but at the same time, seem to be faced with a lull of application, whether it be due to money, politics or competitiveness. On a positive note, I do see an increasing demand and value for uniqueness, vision and forging ahead beyond the status quo, I just hope the momentum does not get cut short.

Thanks for the reply,

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