Tommorow we finally get better healthcare. The 20% of people on the "right" oppose Obamacare because they oppose the reality of the new economy of the 21st century.
And we should be patient in understanding their opposition. These 20% of the population, largely older, white, and male, are the losers in the new economy of this century. They have lost a whole way of life, just like your great grandfather lost a whole way of life 100 years ago.
So these people are fighting for the last century, trying to bring it back. Factories, $2 gas, cars and highways, suburbs: they are trying to hold on. They will give up in 2016, til then we have to fight to keep society moving forward. But we can also be a little understanding.
Last week in New York we stayed in an upscale hotel appealing to young people. We wondered how so many young people could afford the hotel. Here's a story that helps explain why.
According to a U.S. Trust report on high-net-worth business owners, 95 per cent of the baby boomers surveyed were first-generation business owners, and 78 percent of baby boomers who went to own successful businesses grew up middle class or lower. Source: "Younger Generations' Approach to Investing," by Paul Sullivan, Sept 21, 2013.
By comparison, just 20 percent of Gen Y business owners grew up middle class or lower. Meaning 80% of Gen Y business owners come from families with money in the first place.
Gen Y is taking over New York City, which is a good thing.
Earlier this fall the city installed publicly available bikes for rent, called CitiBikes. There are 6,000 of them, and we saw lots of people riding them, often in bike lanes. It's a good thing. It's part of Gen Y's switch from cars. Photo by NineShift.
We predicted this would happen: boomers moving out of suburbs and joining Gen Y in dense communities and light rail.
According to a story in The Washington Post, "Between 2000 and 2010, over a million baby boomers moved out of areas 40
to 80 miles from city centers and a similar number moved to within 5
miles of city centers, according to an analysis of 50 large cities by
the real-estate brokerage Redfin."
As we have said, Boomers and Gen Yers will go to different restaurants and shows and stores downtown, but they are now fighting over the same apartments.
Is World War III coming next year, in 2014? As a futurist who looks at the repeat of events 100 years ago, I don't want to think about it. But Jeffrey Cavanaugh has thought about it.
Here's his story, even detailing the parallel with World War I exactly 100 years ago.
Recent events in the middle east, including Syria and in Egypt, add to the hot spots of the Palestinian Israeli conflict, Iran, Iraq, Hezbollah in Lebanon, and more....
And the situation is pretty much the same today. We have a mixed up troubled part of the world subjected to superpower domination and squabling. And we have major superpowers taking sides, and standing by the side, with their own perceived national interests.
I hope I'm wrong, I hope Cavanaugh is wrong. Just this one time I hope history does not repeat itself. Thanks to son Willie, who has taught us most about what we know about the 21st century, for sending us the link to this story.
Painting: People in Vienna, the heart of the Hapsburg Empire, ignoring the impending doom 100 years ago.
Liliana Toader of Siena Heights University introduced me to the next big thing in online learning: audio interaction online.
Until now, audio interaction with students was possible, but clunky. A student posted an audio message in one of my online classes several years ago.
But with software like Voice Thread, which professor Toader uses, audio messages can be "posted" in sequence and in conversation, just like written comments are in most all online courses today. It adds a whole new dimension to using audio in online courses. I'm anxiously awaiting professor Toader's presentation on how to use interactive audio with your students at our second annual North American Faculty Development Conference in Ft. Lauderdale March 3-4, 2014. I'll know more then. If you want info on the conference, just email Tammy at email@example.com or call her at 800-678-5376 for the brochure.
Will Hyperloop really be faster than a high speed train?
Maybe, but maybe not if you view time in a 21st century perspective. Currently people view time from a 20th century perspective.
Question: If it takes 3 hours to drive from Detroit to Chicago and 5 hours by train, which takes more time? The answer is clearly the car, because one can work on the train.
In 20th century thinking, travel time is assumed to be wasted time. In 21st century thinking, travel time can be very productive profitable time. It's not wasted at all- - provided you are on a train.
So what if Hyperloop goes slower than projected, and you have to sit buckled up and unable to log onto the Internet. Would going 400 mph on Hyperloop really be faster than going 200 mph on the California high speed train they are already building? It depends on what century you are living, and thinking, in.
No one asks me whether cars will fly anymore. With hyperloop, the question is now whether trains will move so fast they seem to fly.
Ten years ago people used to ask me as a futurist whether cars would fly. Today cars go just as slowly, 80- mph, as they did in 1913. But trains are going faster and faster all the time.
Will Hyperloop ever be built? It does not matter. What matters is that people are thinking about fast train service. It actually will not make much difference whether one travels at 200 mph or 800 mph. What will matter is that one can work on a train. Whether LA to SF takes 1 hour or 3 hours will matter some. But that's not the most important thing. The most important thing is one can work on a train.