I have nostalgia like everyone, especially for for cool stuff from my 80’s and 90’s childhood. You know I don’t miss an opportunity to geek out over Dungeon and Dragons, Garbage Pail Kids or comics. That said, I don’t want to go back in human history for real. Human history in general is rather bleak and it is wonderful that we have made so many strides in terms of liberties, freedom, equality, technology and science. Fantasy shows about the Vikings or ancient people are fun for fantasy, but that world was a scary and violent place. I believe the future is better for all of us. And believe it or not, we have a lot of reason to be optimistic about the future, the world is actually becoming a better place if you look at the facts. No wonder Bill Gates’ favorite book from the last decade is a book by the author Steven Pinker titled The Better Angels of Our Nature. The book paints a remarkable picture of how the world is a far less violent place than it used to be. Pinker provides a ton of evidence that illustrates that humans have become much less violent and more humane. Most folks would be surprised by these facts given we live in a world that produces 24/7 news cycles of bad things happening. But all in all there are actually much less bad things happening. When we started settling down into agricultural communities thousands of years ago we actually began a trend of being much less violent.
I know it is not in vogue at the moment to be optimistic, we are all supposed to believe some fantasy that the past was the best days ever and those days are lost to the forces of globalization and multiculturalism, but that is plain wrong. We will all be fine and the future will be better. I predict we will even find ways to deal with some of our heavier challenges.
Human history is just chock full of oppression, struggle, unfairness and inequality. There will always be challenges, but I think many of the old power structures are breaking down which may lead to more opportunity and growth. Here are a few areas to be positive about that could help your bottom line:
With the rise of machine learning and automation, efficiency should continue to increase. Theoretically this creates more value at a lower cost per unit. So maybe someday I can buy a Tesla for half the current price.
Two: Technology Disruptions
Armies of people all around the world are dreaming up new ways to disrupt every imaginable industry in the name of increased efficiency. This comes with disruption and opportunity.
Three: Democratization of Media
Are we all journalists now? It sure feels that way with 24/7 news and massive social media machines churning out content like crazy. Most of it is garbage, but it still will impact the traditional news business.
Four: Advances in Healthcare
There could be amazing advances in health care on the horizon that could deal effectively with cancer, heart disease, aids and whole host of other diseases that have plagued humanity.
In my opinion those that seek lifelong education and apply the knowledge will thrive. This does not mean going a hundred thousand dollars in debt to obtain multiple degrees. Education and knowledge are essentially free. You can learn a ton about personal finance for free on sites like themoneyvikings.net and other personal finance blogs. The internet offers low cost classes and libraries are free!
How do we retain a sense of community in the virtual reality world we will soon enter? And once we enter, will we ever want to come out?
Three: Existential Issues That Will Take a World Community to Resolve
There are several large scale world issues that will need to be dealt with such as climate change. These changes are based in science and physics and care nothing for international borders or man made nation states.