Remaking our World: Basic Needs (Part 1)

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If we decide to restructure our economy to provide everyone with what they need, before permitting anyone excesses, we will need a shared understanding of “Needs.” Fortunately, Abraham Maslow provides us with a starting place with his Hierarchy of Needs.

Five levels of need organized into a pyramid. The first being the foundational layer of the pyramid: Basic Needs. Red in the chart above.

These are the needs required to exist as a human organism on this planet. Air to breathe, water for drink and bathing, and food to eat. Those are obvious. However, we have found it necessary to pass laws to create standards for clean air, clean water, and safe food. 

Some business interests argue that someone having a job today is more critical than our grandchildren having air to breathe and safe water to drink. What those groups often fail to note is: we can do both. All we risk is a possible diminishment of the wealth of their stockholders.

So, I ask you reader: which is the more basic need—a few people getting richer, or a generation having healthy air and water?

The safety of meat, fish, vegetables, and grains from contamination is another area where the government has stepped in. We maintain inspection departments to assure what we buy to put in our children’s stomachs will not make them sick. I can think of worse ways to spend our taxes.

A heated debate currently rages over Genetically Modified (GMO) foods. Such foods produced greater yields; however, rising evidence suggests that our bodies treat these foods differently from more natural products. Until we know differently, it makes sense to increase the portion of heritage foods we consume.

In the future portrayed by The Doorkeeper’s Secrets people have regular counseling from a nutritionist. The goal is for each person to receive the balanced nutrition optimal for their age, gender and health conditions. Of course, choices are provided within the guidelines, but agreements to stay within “optimal foods” allows producers to provide what will actually be used. This reduces waste and conserves land and water.

Next time we will look at some other essential needs including sleep and sex.

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