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Old 05-03-2006, 05:14 PM  
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My theory about future households.

We all know the trends. People have higher and higher expectations over time for material goods, which leads to more households where both husbands and wives work. We have bigger houses now, and big screen TVs and motor homes and robotic dogs and toothbrushes with built-in DVD players and stuff, but at the same time, we're working more, we're stressed and harried, our children are latchkey kids, and our savings rates for retirement are negligible.

I have a new model, and I think it would work.

Old model: Man marries woman, they have kids, and all of the above occurs.

New model: Two couples "marry" or perhaps three or four individuals "marry". All household finances and duties are pooled. All children are legally the custody of all adults.

The advantages of this system are many:

1. You get the advantages of more incomes, but can also get a stay-at-home parent if that works for everybody. You get June Cleaver and someone to be there for the kids, but you also get Rosie the Riveter and Ward Cleaver.

2. With artificial insemination, we may be at the point technologically where a child can be conceived who has a mixed soup of DNA from all of the adults in the household. Therefore, the child(ren) will belong to all of the adults equally (and will probably be genetically more robust to boot). You can truly create a family, as opposed to a commune.

3. Much more disposable income. Imagine a three-income household or a five-income household. There are lots of efficiencies in costs, too: You can buy a larger home more cost-effectively than two smaller homes, you would probably need fewer cars per capita, etc.

4. You have more support capacity for situations such as illness or incapacitation.

Now, I know that you're all immediately moving toward the sex thing. That would depend on the structure. You could conceivably have a model where you've got two couples with no physical interaction, though a stronger model might have a group of males and females with no natural coupling who can all interact at will (except the males, of course).

There's no physiological reason why a familial relationship couldn't develop between multiple people. And of course, it doesn't have to be an even number of people in boy/girl fashion, either. It could be a household that consists of one man and two women, or three men and two women, or even five women. Who cares? Move past the sex part and think about the family/household part.

And no, it's not polygamy. Polygamy means that one person marries many people. This is many people marrying each other on equal terms, without a cult of personality at the center of it.

The summary: if you had a household that consisted of multiple people, and their children were a genetic stew of all of those people, you would end up with a lot of affluent, healthy, stable, strong households. Defining a family as two adults is arbitrary and timeworn; defining a family as a consortium of adults who form a clan for mutual benefit is a superior approach, in which the old system still fits as a subset for those who prefer it.

Mark my words. It's the wave of the future.
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:23 PM   #2
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:23 PM   #3
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I gotta get a toothbrush with a DVD player.

...Time to have the fiance get another job...
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:23 PM   #4
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:25 PM   #5
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Polygamy is on the right track, but it's too narrow. Communes are on the right track, but they're too loosely organized.

The more I think about it, the more I like it. Everybody gets their cake, and everybody gets to eat it, too.
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:27 PM   #6
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I think I might write a magazine article about this. I wonder if it would fly with Better Homes & Gardens, or if I should go with something more progressive.
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:33 PM   #7
Skip Towne Skip Towne is offline
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You sound like Charlie Manson. You should be neg repped.
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:35 PM   #8
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Manson was on the right track, except for the dementia and the stabbings and the murders. If Squeaky Fromme was running the household and Charlie and the others were working, I think they could have pulled off a pretty nice lifestyle system.
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:51 PM   #9
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I think it would work great if you could find another dude who had precisely the same size penis as you. This might open a market for penis calipers. Off to my laboratory I go.
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Old 05-03-2006, 05:58 PM   #10
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I think it would work great if you could find another dude who had precisely the same size penis as you. This might open a market for penis calipers. Off to my laboratory I go.
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Old 05-03-2006, 06:31 PM   #11
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Bob Dole's ex father-in-law had a similar theory back in the early 1980's and as far as Bob Dole knows, is continuing to implement it.

Among other things, he subscribed to the theory that wealth lasts 3 generations. The first builds the wealth, the second maintains it, and the third--being so removed from what it took to build it--blow it. He pointed to strong matriarch figures in the old money families and decided that he'd replace that with a legal structure.

He and his wife both worked and they strictly lived on the lower of the two incomes, saving and conservatively investing every cent of the higher income for 30+ years. He formed a corporate entity and appointed the three children and their spouses to the board of directors. He bought land and under the guise of the corporation, was building a compound (for lack of a better word) near Columbia.

The annual board meeting was the family reunion (tax write-off for the kids to attend) and was held at the compound, where he planned what amounted to paramilitary training, because he's convinced that things will deteriorate politically and economically to the point that people will have to protect their assets with lethal force. As of Bob Dole's divorce in 1995, he had an arsenal that would put the Branch Davidians to shame, and Bob Dole knows of a large cache of gold.

Until the ultimate meltdown, the corporation offers scholarships, but the requirements are such that only family members are eligible. The students would attend MU and to save expenses, would live at the compound and help maintain it in exchange for a stipend (instead of getting a regular job).

There's a lot more to it, but that's the framework. 20 years ago, he was predicting that in Bob Dole's lifetime we'd see things deteriorate to the point that we'd need to return to multi-family sort of living arrangements.
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Old 05-03-2006, 06:35 PM   #12
Phobia Phobia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Dole
Bob Dole's ex father-in-law had a similar theory back in the early 1980's and as far as Bob Dole knows, is continuing to implement it.

Among other things, he subscribed to the theory that wealth lasts 3 generations. The first builds the wealth, the second maintains it, and the third--being so removed from what it took to build it--blow it. He pointed to strong matriarch figures in the old money families and decided that he'd replace that with a legal structure.

He and his wife both worked and they strictly lived on the lower of the two incomes, saving and conservatively investing every cent of the higher income for 30+ years. He formed a corporate entity and appointed the three children and their spouses to the board of directors. He bought land and under the guise of the corporation, was building a compound (for lack of a better word) near Columbia.

The annual board meeting was the family reunion (tax write-off for the kids to attend) and was held at the compound, where he planned what amounted to paramilitary training, because he's convinced that things will deteriorate politically and economically to the point that people will have to protect their assets with lethal force. As of Bob Dole's divorce in 1995, he had an arsenal that would put the Branch Davidians to shame, and Bob Dole knows of a large cache of gold.

Until the ultimate meltdown, the corporation offers scholarships, but the requirements are such that only family members are eligible. The students would attend MU and to save expenses, would live at the compound and help maintain it in exchange for a stipend (instead of getting a regular job).

There's a lot more to it, but that's the framework. 20 years ago, he was predicting that in Bob Dole's lifetime we'd see things deteriorate to the point that we'd need to return to multi-family sort of living arrangements.
That's AWESOME. I want in.
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Old 05-03-2006, 06:55 PM   #13
Bob Dole Bob Dole is offline
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That's AWESOME. I want in.
It was sort of freaky, because it's taken to the extreme. Some of the basic tenets are fairly sound, however, and seem even moreso as time passes. He's managed to build some wealth and barring some really unlikely circumstances, has it structured so that no single descendant can blow it.

Bob Dole forgot to mention that the "master plan" also included their retirement. After they retired, Mom and Dad were to be hired by the corporation as caretakers of the compound and receive an annual salary, free room and board, etc.

Part of Bob Dole's problem with the whole thing was being basically forced to use 2 weeks of paid leave every year to attend the board meeting/boot camp.
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Old 05-03-2006, 06:58 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Dole
It was sort of freaky, because it's taken to the extreme. Some of the basic tenets are fairly sound, however, and seem even moreso as time passes. He's managed to build some wealth and barring some really unlikely circumstances, has it structured so that no single descendant can blow it.

Bob Dole forgot to mention that the "master plan" also included their retirement. After they retired, Mom and Dad were to be hired by the corporation as caretakers of the compound and receive an annual salary, free room and board, etc.

Part of Bob Dole's problem with the whole thing was being basically forced to use 2 weeks of paid leave every year to attend the board meeting/boot camp.
How long did you put up with that shit?
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Old 05-03-2006, 07:17 PM   #15
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I'm not sure how many have read "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress" but Heinlein briefly describes some non-standard families in it. Like serial marriages where there are many different husbands and wives that marry in as the older ones die.
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