How do you think the Community got to be the way it is?
I guess I think the community got to be this way by trying too hard to take chance and uncertainty out of human life.
To me, this is sort of trade off that we face as human beings. If we want to have total security, we have to give up danger. If we want to have job security, for example, we have to give up being able to take a chance and go out and find a new and more interestint job.
If we want to have guaranteed freedom from sadness, we also have to give up our ability to have joy (because we have to be emotionally open to experience joy and that can be turned to sorrow).
So I think the people in previous times must have tried to figure out how they could keep from being vulnerable in any way. But then they went to far and took all the possibilities out of life too.
I think the forces of control created the Community the way it is. Building off the previous post's idea of eliminating chance and free will, the centralization of power so as to be able to create a world where individual action is part of an equation without any element of distinction is what allowed the community to exist in the manner it does. This becomes the natural result of a centralization of power, a consolidation of control, without any intermediary checks or balances that safeguard individual liberty and expression. The desire to establish a consensus driven governing body that does not permit the slightest of individual freedom and the distinctive nature of liberty is what allowed the Community to be the way it is.
How the community became what it developed into is a hard question to answer. One is made aware through the text in the book that the people had made a decision not to have any of the things that cause pain or poor choices in humans. They must have bought land and set up perimeters over the land. I remember a movie by M Night Shalaman which had a similar set of circumstances. The people had chosen to isolate themselves from other societies and lived more like the Puritans had many years before. They had set up perimeters and a governing body to make the decisions for the population. They also had set up outside security so that no one would ever invade their society. Perhaps the community forefathers had done the same.
I believe that the one decision I would have trouble setting up would be when to determine if release would be appropriate. If I was one of the forefathers my own release should only come at a time when I was ready. However, if they had already transferred the memories after they had set the rules, then they would not have a fear of being released.