The post-war Old Order crashes around us. The Information Age reaches the maturation necessary to displace the Industrial Age.
Peak disruption may be at hand in the transition, but peak influence never will arrive. The influence of information will – can – never cease expanding, for such is the nature of information.
The post-post-war order rises. The disruptions accelerate and enlarge as one Age gives way to the next. Fukuyama was wrong.
The media that provided the compass and the landscape for millennia is the troll under the bridge wooing us from reality and telling us of a path to a fantasy prosperity just over the horizon. We look from their horizon and see only moral and intellectual squalor, poverty, the loss of history… and death. The Industrial information behemoth has become the enemy of the progress that has increased prosperity since the first man raised his eyes, looked around himself and noticed a world. And told another of what he saw.
The industrial, post-war dominoes are falling.
Bookstores are replaced by coffee houses in which the passionately illiterate argue with the passionately uneducated over the best way to overthrow a civilization they refuse to understand, a civilization that moved the world from hunter-gatherers to coffee houses.
Sears, the iconic retailer of the Industrial Age is dead.
Amazon, the iconic vendor of the Information Age, extends across the planet, across industries, across homes, its information the horn from which our cornucopia of goods & services tumbles unfettered by the taxes necessary to sweep our streets, provide safety in our lives & sustain our cities.
Britain quits a 70-yr effort of conglomeration with her former enemies and various continental detritus of millennia of tribal wars, withdrawing to her own tribe, the most successful in history. But that tribe is fracturing under an alien invasion unopposed, even encouraged, by the final gasp of an Old Order determined to sustain an Industrial Age that has run its course, regardless of the loss of life and prosperity entailed in propping-up senescence.
The USSR falls, disintermediating the last contiguous empire. The Old Order doesn’t notice, still spending countless trillions of fantasy dollars to defend a depopulating West from a dismembered, depopulating threat.
The Wall falls, uniting a Europe cleaved for nearly a century, only to see the suddenly-free nations and nascent empires fall apart.
Information rises – and the Old way of organizing peoples falls. Yugoslavia. Brexit. Catalonia. It won’t stop.
It shouldn’t. Stasis is not civilization; inertia does not engender freedom.
Disintermediation will not be confined to Europe: Quebec has been itching to leave Canada for decades. California insists on a totalitarianism unsustainable under the Constitution. Kurdistan. Kurd-Shia-Sunni splits in Afghanistan, in what once was Iraq, in Iran. Will Iran’s threatening empire expand to the Mediterranean? Or collapse as the Kurds secede?
The arms merchants of the Old Order will prosper as S Asia devolves, ensuring more loss of life than necessary, and costs no human being can fathom.
My dad remembered horse-drawn fire engines in upstate New York and watched men walk on the moon.
We Boomers were born within the span of the invention of transistor (1947), stored programming languages (1948), the laser that revolutionized communications (1960) the microchip (1958) that put these technologies in our hands, and the technology (ARPANet – 1960s), that birthed the internet connecting them all and putting the world’s information into the hands of the relatively least-educated people in hundreds of generations.
Millennials know little of history and nothing of a world without cell phones and more computing power in their hands than used to put men on the Moon or fight the most destructive wars in history. But they will see more change than we dreamed of.
Whether that change will be good or ill, greater liberty & prosperity, or the fundamental loss of the greatest civilization ever known, is the question they must answer. We are setting the foundations of that answer today. It’s not looking good.
It is the question dividing parents from non-parents, Progs & Conservatism, Inc., from Trumpsters, Leave from Remain, Catalonia from Spain, Red from Blue.
It’s what divides a free future from Leviathan.
The post-war Order is dead. The Industrial Age on which it was built is ending.
How we choose to use the Information Age is up to us; it has brought us not just smart phones, but the NSA. Will we use information to expand liberty or expand its destruction?
Prosperity & Liberty for future generations are in the hands of those who believe in that future enough to populate it and of Millennials tired of the Old Order and the band-aids it chose rather than cures.
The battle must be joined for the liberty which was our birthright, and should be the birthright of all Americans.
The Doomsday Clock must be repurposed to show time remaining before the choice of action must be made.
It is only a few minutes to midnight.