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An excellent case for why 'social tech' is the best growth opportunity for capital and humanity right now.

Also, this fits really well with the transition illustrated by Ervin Laszlo in Macroshift. This is a systemic civilizational shift. Sparked by new technology with trajectory determined/dependent on values/mindset. Tyler in effect looking at this from the old perspective, while you're seeing it from the emergent perspective. You're are standing on different civilizational trajectories.

Some of my earlier thoughts on this: http://igniter.com/post6800
Some excerpts from Macroshift: http://igniter.com/post242


As someone working on the ground in regional economic development, I find the framework you've laid out to be the one laden with the most possibility. Now we need to create the framework for pragmatic actionability.

I do quibble with this point:

"..we should demand that all of our institutional leaders (business, government and education) aggressively address the obstacles that are slowing the transition from one institutional regime to another and increasing short-term pressure on all of us."

I say we must create a parallel process in order to move ahead. Today's institutional leaders are the gatekeepers of new ideas. They are more interested in jockeying for political position, maintaining their relevance and revenue streams. They stand to lose more with any changes and will defend to the end the old ways.


"rein in" not "reign in."

Interesting piece. BTW, you may want to look at the TFP growth difference between durables and non-durables, it is interesting that only one of these seems to be affected by TGS.


JK has already made this point. However, much (most) of the growth in median family income is a consequence of higher LFP (women working).

A missing point is that median family income would have risen considerably more, were it not for this rise in inequality. Per-worker productivity has risen over 20% since the 1970s. Note that per-capita productivity has risen more because of smaller families and greater overall LFP.


My view is that the cause of the developed countries current stagnation is a lack of innovation in the education sectors. All over the world there are massive government monopolies or massive public cash fueled interventions in education markets.

Lower income citizens rely heavily on education to climb the income ladder but the response to the sudden increase in demand by the education establishments around the globe has been to drastically and regularly increase tuitions and fees.

We will be stuck in stagnation until the higher education market is forced to compete for students by lowering tuitions and increasing innovation. Innovation is especially needed; college professors still educate the same way they did 50 years ago.

New sites like khanacademy.org and Western Governors University offers some hope for the future but there is a lot more room for this market to grow.


Gloomily the charts show an L shaped recovery (plunged and flat-lining).

American exceptionalism optimized technology to deliver winner takes all. Resulting in the largest groups headed by the fewest wealthy people. Resulting in 4 layer cake employment economy.

* The super rich (icing on cake).
* The creative class (highly educated)
* The creamy middle (jobs squeezed out by automaton or shipped overseas).
* The bottom layer (low skilled working poor service workers).

What American values need changing to create work for those disrupted and squeezed out?

32 hour work week...

Peter Bleyleben

For 50 years after WW2 we thought 'it is just us' -- and we added Regulations over Regulations -- Some just stupid, many really important to 'create a better society' -- but all 'cost resources'.. Increasingly we compete with the rest of the world -- that compete without 'nice-to-have' environmental, social, etc 'costs': The steady purchasing value decline of the dollar over the last 30 years in a global sense proves our increasing cost-disadvantage:
Having had dinner in Paris lately compared to 30 years ago? Compare the bills....


1. This may or may not be a quibble...you've glossed over the components of the metric "median family income." Many of us remember when that meant a single wage earner's contribution to the family. Now the norm is two (or more!) wage earners with one (or more!) jobs.

2. While durable goods have decreased as a relative percentage of income, this is another example of picking metrics carefully. see http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/fed-official-heckled-t-eat-ipad-20110311-122230-439.html for a recent similar thought.

Bob Allen (@CuriousAgilist)

"Become less efficient. Which means you will get less done. Which, ironically, will make you more productive, as long as you choose the right things to get done." KATHERINE BELL, HBR

"The goal needs to shift from one of making a system that teaches children a curriculum more efficiently to one of making the system more effective by inspiring lifelong learning in students..." STEVE DENNING, Forbes

I'd love to hear someone try to defend the notion that the current state of the world economy (when compared with just about any point in history) is the result of a fixed-size-pie model.

Resources (on this planet) are limited. No argument there. To behave as if human potential is limited is folly.

John Robb

John, the personal income metric was a big deal to me too.


Liz Warren did a good job on the details of this stagnation.

Thing is, the stagnation is already over. We are in decline now.


ignore government .. nothing accelerating the shift will come from there .. it is beyond redemption ... AND NOT NEEDED!


I'd also note you're a tad sloppy on how you interpret the word stagnation, initially asserting that it implies no growth (a trip to the dictionary finds it means slow or no growth). There's a pretty big difference between no growth and slow growth given the overall topic at hand.


It's q quibble, but I don't understand your opening sentence. The proclamation would make more sense it the book was a hardcover release? There is something illegitimate about an e-book. Is there some sort of correlation you are asserting here?

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