Totally unfinished thought about progress and humans and physical space and actual SPACE:
What if cultural resets (the founding of America, an existing country after a revolution, a community after a devastating disease) are critical for the progress of new ideas for humankind?
New foundations are frequently the birth of radical new ideas, often because of some constraint that established communities don’t have. The difference between a community that is happy enough with the status quo and doesn’t want to change, versus one where new cultural norms and ideas of what is valuable are fighting for the top spot.
Perhaps we can make progress in some areas (certain areas of technological change seem to fit well within capitalism), but without any unclaimed land where some malcontents can go start a new colony, are we (humans) limited in how radical new ideas on cultural organization will take root?
It seems like we have a ways to go before we can even start to think about colonizing new plots of land that are not Earth — and let’s be serious, any Mars or Moon colony is not likely to be a self-sustaining community without the support from some gigantic government.
Are we stuck in this particular area until we get off this rock? Or are there cracks where new cultures can still form?