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10 Big Mistakes People Make in Thinking about the Future
Why Change Happens: Ten Theories
The second article seems to be more about buzzwords than anything else. Number 10 is particularly annoying (what does it mean for change to be due to complexity?)
Reasonable point-- I wish Taleb's ideas had been included.
I don't think either article contributes much, unfortunately. I wish something like futurism was more socially credible, because doing it right seems valuable. But "future studies" as it currently exists seems to get what it deserves. (though Sara Robinson is probably not a fair exemplar)
I think the highlight of the first article was: "in fact, the longer [a trend has] been going on, the more overdue you are for it to change."
A sample of Alternet headlines from the front page:
The Supreme Court Is Ruled by Right-Wing Extremists -- Can the Court's Moderate Women Counteract Their Radical Bent?
Politicians Swallow Pink Slime to Prove Their Allegiance to Corporations.
Voter Suppression 101: How Conservatives Are Conspiring to Disenfranchise Millions of Americans
And, from Campaign for Change's About section:
"We live in a remarkable political moment: precarious, yet potentially transforming. At the Campaign for America’s Future, our daily work is to bring about the progressive transformation.
After three decades of conservative dominance in American politics, we Americans are threatened with economic disintegration, environmental devastation and international
When I tried to read the first article, a widget complaining about wolves caught in inhumane traps popped up, and I couldn't get rid of it. The article itself was pretty vague and almost bereft of examples. Take this paragraph:
"4. If it's taboo, it's probably important.
The thing you are not discussing -- the elephant in the room -- has a very high probability of being the very thing that will put an end to the present era, and launch you into the next phase of your future. Worse: the longer you ignore or deny it, the more at its mercy you will ultimately be when the change does come down."
Yet she doesn't cite any examples of taboos that could be important, perhaps because she can't think of any (other than perhaps that Conservatives are less intelligent than liberals and the elderly need to be euthanized), or she can think of genuine taboos, but she is unwilling to acknowledge them for fear of offending the sensibilities of her far-left readership (like the ominous growing body of data on race and IQ differences).
The second article was even weaker than the first.
(P.S.: though I disagreed, I didn't downvote.)
AlterNet publishes some preposterous things, like the articles about How Americans Do Everything Wrong: Americans farm wrong, eat wrong, fuck wrong, shop wrong, do religion wrong, vote wrong, etc.
The people who write this blather just show boundless contempt for ordinary Americans, then they wonder why these Americans vote for Republicans who treat them with more respect.
I disagree. Aren't the people who write AlterNet ordinary Americans? Aren't we all on occasion a little bit fed up with our government and with our neighbors, and don't we wish to correct those issues?
And the suggestion that Republicans treat "us" with more respect is simply ludicrous. How about the ordinary Americans who are also women, LGBT, immigrants, teenagers, atheists, college-educated, below the poverty line, of Arabic descent, or otherwise members of groups often subjected to the Republican Party's invective?
How would you classify what Bruce Sterling is saying in Historical Narrative, Futurism and Emergent Network Culture according to those ten categories?
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