Tuesday, January 03, 2006

The Next 50 Years; There is Huge Change Ahead

Adhocracy, the Netcohort, disintermediation, and the world.

Alvin Toffler was right on the big picture. C. F. Bastiat was right on process. I am going to take some wild guesses.

The next 50 years will prove that life is not linear. Big surprises wait around each corner, huge disruptions will explode on the scene as the industrial age unravels.

Technology is empowering the individual causing the massive centralized bureaucracies to first shrink, and then implode. The future will belong to the Netcohort, knowledge workers interacting in small flexible teams. It is not a utopia, but it may be reality. If a free form association is allowed to develop all will profit, some will profit immensely.

If force is applied to bleed the Netcohort, they will move, they have very little fixed capital to hold hostage. If they are bled around the world, a possible balkanization of technology and a worsening of life styles for all may result.

It is on this fragile platform built of my myopic conceits that I will project the future. Don't say you weren't warned, of my exceptional fallibility, and of these possible scenarios.

2015) We will still be enduring or just emerging from the greater depression. Technology will get the traction to make massive changes in social structures. Government functions will be privatized, or done away with. Large unwieldy corporations will be eviscerated by netcohort teams that have carved out the profitable niches, leaving the ruling and bloated behemoths of our age to rot.

2025) Democracy as a system of government starts to recede. Socialism and its "rob everyone above average and give it to the government elites" mentality passes as the industrial era that gave it the power of extortion withers.

2035) Another wave of new technologies once again changes the face of the world. The last of the remaining large nation states begin to dissolve. Minnesota and a few contiguous states, tired of giving 50% of their income for projects in CA or NY, join with a Canadian province or two, and create a new small government country. California is joined with Mexico on very favorable terms; Hawaii and Alaska go there own ways, and Europe long ago gave up on the Brussels bureaucracy.

2045) A world that we would not understand today has grown up among us. Long life techniques have changed social interactions dramatically.

2055) You have to be kidding. I don't know what will happen tomorrow, I can't even start to guess this far out. Ok, one small guess - the world will be very different, but good times will once again reign in a late summer Kondratiev cycle. Maybe.

Any prediction that suggests things will just go on as they have is very unlikely to hold up very long. There will be lots of unforeseen events to use as an excuse for missing "the projection."

My excuse is I don't predict - I guess - wildly.

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