IFSR Newsletter 1984 Vol 4 No. 3/4 Autumn
FUSCHL CONFERENCE APRIL 30 – MAY 4,1984: ARE THE DEVELOPING COUNTRIES LARGE SCALE SYSTEMS SUITABLE TO BE TACKLED BY MEANS OF THE SYSTEMS AND CYBERNETICS APPROACH?
Elohim J. L.
* Seccion de Graduados de la E.S.I.M.E. Instituto Politechnico Nacional
* Asociaci6n Mexicana de Sistemas y Cibernetica
A VERY FIRST NEED
In the Fuschl Group we are interested in learning how to get “a holistic view of the world, its peoples, their problems and potentials” (Preface of FC 82).
Actions for implementing this view are also our concern, such as “to build a commitment towards the improvement of the human condition everywhere and the enrichment of quality of life for all” (Part 1, Chap. One Parag. B. 3. of FC 82).
As suggested by Horst Wedde (FC 82 pag. 69) I am convinced that “everybody (inside the group) knows how to tune and play an instrument”.
I feel certain also about the necessity of “developing our ways to play together, to rehearse”.
Then, it is indispensable for our purpose to make up our minds about the items to be tackled for us, all together.
During the first Symposium, two years ago, eighty titles of items emerged and all of them were considered “unique doors which can be opened to many possibilities for the future”.
However, these items are quite scattered into one of the possible world views.
I wouldn’t dare to guess how many world views can be build by the members of the group.
Besides, to my knowledge, these items were not related either to a certain priority or sequentially among themselves.
The number of tunes, songs, … sonatas, symphonies that we have to compose and play together is countless.
Let us assume, for the time being, that I have convinced you, the participants at this Fuschl Meeting (April 84), that one of the CONJOINT HOLISTIC COMPOSITIONS that almost all of us have interest in playing together is concerned with the problems of developing countries and the transcendence of their solutions for a ~:more rational future of human society.
The title of this composition is THE SYSTEMS AND CYBERNETICS FOR THE DEVELOPING DEVELOPMENT
DEVELOPED, DEVELOPING, AND UNDERDEVELOPED DEVELOPMENT
During the last decades we have been hearing that a country can be classified either as a developed or a developing one.
The criteria for defining these two classes are not universally accepted.
However, in general terms it has been declared that a developed country, is characterized by a developed development as a resultant of being highly industrialized. Due to this fact the country has a certain autonomy for the conduction of its economy; a fact that allows the assurement of a relatively high standard of living to its population.
Instead in a developing country, severe restrictions over its economical life are imposed by decisions made in several of the highly industrialized countries. A very specific kind of economic and political strategy is required for each country in order to increase the production of goods and services. A production that would satisfy the needs of its population bearing in mind the necessity of assuring a rational use of the natural resources available. This strategy has to be designed taking into account the severe restriction imposed by the developed countries.
Besides, it is also heard that a country has an underdeveloped development in the case that its natural, technical, financial, economical and/or political resources are less than required for improving substancially the standard of living for its population.
These three terms are used very widely and unconsistently as a measure of the level of development reached by a country. They are a very first, global view, very subjective, of the interaction of countries in our world in our times.
However, these three terms do express nothing about the potentiality of the countries for evolving as a whole inside the community of nations.
ANALYZING THE SUBJECT
It is not acceptable, from a scientific point of view, to assume that some nations have reached the end of their development as suggested by the term developed. Besides it is a well known fact that many of these countries are today still facing big problems concerning misery, poverty, ignorance, illiteracy, deficiency of justice and even hunger, … in spite of the high level of average development reached by the country as a whole.
It is unacceptable from a human point of view to justify the existence of underdeveloped countries without having chances of development, remaining always very poor in spite of the fact that most of these countries have a large number of the most valuable resource they could have: human beings.
Based on this arguing a very first evidence is that any country is a developing one and will continue being so if at least its population is allowed to work and live, being conscious about the necessity of learning to develop harmonically its individuality as a nation, keeping in mind that all nations have a similar right to be exerted on our Earth, the only one that we have available, for the time being.
There are some other facts to be analyzed.
(1) The quality of life for the population living in the so called developed countries is better than the quality of life allowed to the people living in a developing country.
(2) The living conditions in the highly industrialized countries compared to the infrahuman conditions usually imposed to millions of human beings inside the underdeveloped world are so different that this is not any more acceptable from the human point of view.
(3) The richness of some developed countries having a relatively very small amount of natural resources and the poorness of developing and underdeveloped countries having a relatively large amount of natural resources that usually are exported from their territories is a contradictory question unacceptable for organizing the development of mankind.
(4) During centuries and still today, the leaders of some peoples, the governments of some nations have taken advantage of historical conjunctures and have put forth military, political, economical andlor cultural domination over most of the nations.
This kind of domination has been exerted also inside many countries and limited the progress of ethnical and social minorities.
Piracies and robberies have been the support for the development of a few nations. The rest of countries which represent the majority of human beings, have been, one generation after another, struggling against an undesirable colonialism that has not allowed them to use effectively their potentiality in order to impulse their individual, regional and national developments.
Very often this colonialism is considered by those who are imposing it by force, a reasonable action, mainly because they get large and extensive benefits (resources) from it, but also because they believe that they are offering political, military and economical protection to the colonized people. They even dare to argue that the cultural values imposed are free contributions to the development of the colonized country or community. They do not realize that the development of something is the result of internal forces searching out how to realize its
(5) The great advancements in science and technology that have occurred in the very last decades due to the development of the productive forces in the highly industrialized countries have been the origin of the improvement of the standard of living in these countries, but also have been used for the design and construction of very sophisticated weapons aiming to destroy human enemies. It is done without realizing how dangerous is today, for the still very fragile human civilization, to put in the hands of very few decision makers the possibility of destroying in one instant what has taken centuries to be built. The scientific knowledge and the high technology employed for the nuclear, biological and chemical weapons are today the greatest aberration of human rationality.
(6) A large number of technological devices and processes have been inserted during the last years into the industrial and agricultural production as an effect of the development of productive forces interacting with the results of the scientific and technical revolution. Increases in productivity and improvement in quality have been obtained as planned before the insertion. Undesirable secondary effects such as the pollution of the natural life and of the societal acitivities once detected are being solved when the insertion has taken place in the developed countries. Very rarely these undesirable effects are eliminated when the technological innovation is implemented in a developing country or an underdeveloped one.
What emerges from these facts is the evidence that the countries’ classification as underdeveloped, developing and developed has as a main purpose to justify the political ambition of some governments of developed countries and the economical ambition of some international monopolies whose power is greater than many governments.
MODELING THE DEVELOPMENT OF A COUNTRY
The occurence, 10.000 years ago, of the agricultural revolution and the happening of the industrial revolution starting in some countries during the sixteenth century are followed today by the scientific and technical revolution. The sequence of these three events is announcing today, at the beginning of the XXlst. century, the end of the prehistorical age of the human civilization.
Men and women who are alive in the present historical instant of the trajectory of mankind will be the builders of the basis of the real human civilization – the one based on the enormous potential rationality of its members if we are able to exert individual efforts for a peaceful world and to organize them in effective collective actions against those ambitious governors who quite irrationally are promoting the use of violence for solving (?) the conflicts among countries; against them, also because they decided to employ an important part of the intellectual capacities of their countries for the production of weapons to be used in nuclear, biological, chemical, … sideral wars, i.e. for the destruction of the possibility of building the human civilization.
Being aware of this perspective, we could not avoid to use the possibilities offered by the systems and cybernetics approach to model the possible development of a country, to model the evolutionary trajectory of mankind, which means to use the latest advancement of the scientific attitude for understanding our world, and implementing the measures that will assure the progress of human civilization.
(1) Issues requiring financial, technological and political concessions of highly industrialized countries towards countries who are unable to produce what is required for satisfying the needs of their population. As a whole it is required to transform the present international economical order into truly human relations among all nations. Do we need any modeling of this process?
(2) Issues requiring the multidisciplinary joint effort of the institutions of various countries. Solidarity actions among human beings have been organized since the very beginning of mankind without requiring any model. Do we need today to model the great results expected from the solidarity actions among nations in order to convince ambitious people who are in power positions, to show them that they are wrong as referred to the interest of mankind?
(3) Issues that each country can and has to deal with independently, based on the right evaluation of the needs that it is required to satisfy and the resources available for such a purpose.
Corruption and robberies inside a country can they be prevented by modeling the possibilities offered by the organization of the collective work?
IFSR Newsletter 1984 Vol 4 No. 3/4 Autumn