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The "larger picture."

Nassim Taleb is referring to the “larger picture” in his comments regarding the fragility of the economy due to expanding debt. (CNBC interview embedded in

The word debt and its significance depend, to a large degree, on how it affects you. Are you burdened by debt or are you benefiting from it, at least for now? The larger picture refers to our simultaneous existence within the societal as well an even larger global system; it implies that there exists positive or negative interconnectedness of each one of us regardless of what our personal points of view may be.

Systems science principles are neutral to any system’s outcome; they offer multiple patterns to choose from for all participants. Are you creating organized complexity or just shifting the system further into chaos? It’s your choice as a societal and global participant.

When a system fails to maintain organized complexity, its evolvable adaptiveness, it’s analogous to a celestial object losing/escaping its gravitational field. The subsequent trajectory is anyone’s guess. Fragility of a system comes from the loss of its resiliency, and Nassim Taleb refers to it in his second video interview, and is a product of system’s redundancy. In this context, debt needs to viewed in its underlying relationship to trust/confidence within the system. When a system is losing its organized complexity, and thus its adaptability, from an unending expansion of debt, this process continues to dilute the quality of the existing societal credit/trust (Latin credo = trust).

Systems right themselves up, eventually, providing that they are allowed to do so; ecology/biology serve as inspiring examples. From this point of view, we’re all in the same boat, regardless of our personal preferences. In this boat metaphor, starting to reestablish organized complexity simply means that we all row in the same direction and start working on our trust that needs to be proportionate to our credit.

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