Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Industrial Age

Toward zero unemployment

A dozen generations ago, there was no unemployment, largely because there were no real jobs to speak of.

Before the industrial revolution, the thought that you’d leave your home and go to an office or a factory was, of course, bizarre.

What happens now that the industrial age is ending?

As the final days of the industrial age roll around, we are seeing the core assets of the economy replaced by something new. Actually, it’s something old, something handmade, but this time, on a huge scale.

The industrial age was about scarcity.

Everything that built our culture, improved our productivity, and defined our lives involved the chasing of scarce items.

On the other hand, the connection economy, our economy, the economy of the foreseeable future, embraces abundance.

No, we don’t have an endless supply of the resources we used to trade and covet.

No, we certainly don’t have a surplus of time, either.

But we do have an abundance of choice, (except for third world citizens traveling to colonial State powers? Whose passports do Not require visas and denial of visas)

An abundance of connection, and an abundance of access to knowledge (without labs or practical training?)

We know more people, (meaning see more crowd?) have access to more resources, and can leverage our skills more quickly and at a higher level than ever before.

This abundance leads to two races.

The race to the bottom is the Internet-fueled challenge to lower prices, find cheaper labor, and deliver more for less.

The other race is the race to the top: the opportunity to be the one they can’t live without, to be the linchpin we would miss if he didn’t show up.

The race to the bottom is the Internet-fueled challenge to lower prices, find cheaper labor, and deliver more for less.

The other race is the race to the top: the opportunity to be the one they can’t live without, to be the linchpin we would miss if he didn’t show up.

The race to the top focuses on delivering more for more. It embraces the weird passions of those with the resources to make choices, (and create choices?)and it rewards originality, marketability, and art.

The connection economy continues to gain traction because connections scale, information begets more information, and influence accrues to those who create this abundance.

As connections scale, these connections paradoxically make it easier for others to connect as well, because anyone with talent or passion can leverage the networks created by connection to increase her impact.

The connection economy doesn’t create jobs where we get picked and then get paid; the connection economy builds opportunities for us to connect, and then demands that we pick ourselves.

Just as the phone network becomes more valuable when more phones are connected (scarcity is the enemy of value in a network), the connection economy becomes more valuable as we scale it.

Friends bring us more friends.

A reputation brings us a chance to build a better reputation.

Access to information encourages us to seek ever more information.

The connections in our life multiply and increase in value. Our stuff, on the other hand,  becomes less valuable over time.

… [this riff is inspired by my new book…]

Seth Godin, 2013

 

Stay at home moms: What is your worth?

Troy Polamalu posted:
Shout out to you stay at home moms.
This info-graphic really puts into perspective everything you do.
Shout out to you stay at home moms. This info-graphic really puts into perspective everything you do. In my opinion, priceless.

Stay-at-home moms: you don’t owe the world an explanation

Posted on January 26, 2014 by  (selected as one of the top posts)

Once, several months ago, I wrote this post about Stay-at-home moms.

It was a simple expression of gratitude for stay-at-home moms, particularly my wife.

It got some attention. It was viewed around 3 million times in two days.

I never intended to be an official spokesman for SAHMS across the nation. You do not require my services, nor am I equipped to provide them.

Plenty of you can eloquently defend your vocation, and because you have experience in the arena, you can do so more richly and convincingly than I ever could.

I’m just a guy who loves his wife and appreciates the sacrifices she makes for the family. That’s really the entirety of my insight into this subject.

So it’s with appropriate hesitancy that I offer just one suggestion to all of you.

Here it is:

1. Don’t pay any attention to people like this.

In fact, don’t even click on the link. It’s a blog post, from a website called Thought Catalogue, entitled, “I Look Down On Young Women With Husbands And Kids And I’m Not Sorry.”

The gist: this woman has no kids, she’s never been married, she has zero understanding of what goes into raising children or maintaining a healthy marriage, yet she’s decided to degrade you because, presumably, the poor girl is hard up for cash and needs to get a ton of cheap hits so she can collect on the ad revenue. (How can I get ad revenue? I posted so far 4,100 articles)

I don’t usually take to reading incoherent, half baked, inflammatory trash.

And what is my take? Well, she raises some interesting points and we should all pause for a moment to reflect upon her observations.

My one experience with wading unwittingly into the “Mommy Wars” taught me something.

It taught me that our broken, confused society has convinced many stay-at-home moms that they need to justify or apologize for their choice to opt out of the hallowed ”job force” in favor of full-time mothering.

You don’t. You really, really don’t.

If you read the comments under that ridiculous article, you’ll see women expressing outrage, but also offering explanations as to why they decided not to outsource their mom-duties.

It pained me to see this. You’re raising your kids, it’s as simple as that. You shouldn’t have to give a reason, anymore than you should have to give your reasoning for drinking water or walking on two legs. (Why not? If Stay at home moms feel the need to explain?)

I think motherhood should be promoted, and the institution of the family should be defended, but you do an excellent job of that simply by being moms.

The disrespect for SAHMs stems from ignorance. The only cure for ignorance is truth (again, what is meant by truth?), and there are two ways to administer a dose of it: you can say it, or you can demonstrate it.

All I do with this blog is say it. As moms – out in the world, against the odds, against the grain, giving of yourself, dedicating your lives to you children — you are demonstrating it. You are living it.

Many of your critics just haven’t done it.

They haven’t been in the trenches all day, every day, shaping children into respectable adults, and doing it themselves, by hand, with sweat and tears and heartache.

They haven’t sacrificed everything for another person.

They don’t know what that is — what it feels like.

They don’t know what it’s like to be in charge of another human being’s entire life. All day. Every day.

They don’t know what goes into running a house.

They’ve never been there. They live in a civilization built by people who put in the sort of work and made the sort of sacrifices that they themselves would never be willing to make. And, in their comfort, in their arrogance, in their brokenness, they mock.

They mock you.

But they don’t know what they’re saying. They just don’t know.

And what is this argument about, really?

Is it better to have a job or take care of your family full time? Is that the controversy?

What a twisted point of view we have in this culture. This is what happens when you buy into the notion that mankind, and especially womankind, achieved emancipation through industrialization.

The Industrial Age and the advent of consumerism gave birth to the modern idea of a “job,” and the pinnacle of freedom and self fulfillment is to have one of them.

Or so we’re told. Ironically, this is a traditionally left-wing point of view, but hating capitalism is also a traditionally left-wing point of view.

The free market is evil, they say, but the ultimate expression of female liberation is to participate in it. (This opinion is Not clear. Need to be developed on)

What a dizzying philosophy these people profess.

And with this philosophy we haven’t just put the cart before the horse, we’ve severed the cart from the horse completely, and now we’re sitting in the cart waiting for it to gallop off into the sunset.

The point is, jobs exist as a means to care for your family. Some jobs are meaningful in their own right, but most, when separated from family, serve no great purpose other than as vehicles for personal advancement.

What’s the point of personal advancement? The answer is either

A) to amass wealth and material possessions for your own enjoyment or

B) to be in a better position to use your abilities to serve others.

You, stay-at-home moms, are using your abilities to serve others, and you’re doing it in the most direct, purest way possible: motherhood. (And when she has time to serve herself? She doesn’t deserve to think about her well-being?)

Beyond all of this, the worst thing about trying to convince women that there’s something wrong with “staying home” is that it fools young girls into being ashamed of their feminine instincts.

Most girls are not naturally competitive and ambitious — at least not competitive and ambitious in the sort of way that men tend to be, the sort of way that has always made men into fighters and hunters and conquerors.

It is a very good thing that women are not this way. (General statements are false)

Women naturally desire to love others and sacrifice themselves. They care about relationships. They aren’t as concerned with getting ahead as they are with elevating those around them.

None of those characteristics will serve you well in many jobs. They won’t help your “career advancement.” They will only make you vulnerable, and put you at the mercy of your less scrupulous competitors. (Distributing false opinions?)

This is why it is dangerous to see “the professional world” as an end in and of itself.

But you know all of this. The people who don’t know probably won’t be convinced by anything I have to say.

Pay no attention to them. They don’t deserve to be taken seriously.

Besides, you’ve got better things to do with your time. (Like what again? Serving a bunch of brats and a husband and mother-in-law, father-in-law…)

Note: And these  Stay at home moms need not explain: They have to wait for Watt Walsh to do the explaining? From a male instinct perspective?

 

Happiness is a modern concept? What the ancient philosophers were talking about…?

In 1794, the young and radical French revolutionary Saint-Just proclaimed at the Convention: “Happiness is a new idea in Europe“.  Saint-Just was a learned man and must have read the documents and discussions of the leaders of the American Revolution and the concept that happiness is a natural right for every citizen. Was this idea of happiness similar to the one understood in Europe?

After the French Revolution, there were ideas thrown around that all citizens were entitled to eat properly, enjoy health, free time for leisure, appropriate retirement conditions…

What substituted happiness in Europe before the French Revolution?

Before the revolution, the little people were invisible and were of no concern to the nobility in these absolute monarchies, except when famine hits and the power feels the heat…

The ancient philosophers and the succeeding thinkers viewed happiness as “a way of living”, guided by virtue and reason, in relative indifference to material possession and worldly successes. It was out of the question that idiots can be considered to be happy…

It was not conceivable to claim happiness if you believed that it could have an end: Happiness was a concept directly linked to a faith in eternity and immortality.

Happiness was irreducibly an elitist acquisition, reserved for those who had the mental and material means to become wise and leisurely contemplate nature and the living people…

What could be the meaning and value of Happiness in modern time?

The “utilitarian” vision of happiness (Jeremy Bentham) proclaimed that happiness is in essence the absence of pains and aches, and the satisfaction of individual preferences can come in any order…The goal of  the activities of individuals is the greater happiness possible within the greater number of mankind “the common good”.

This “democratization” of happiness, at the reach of the little people, was denuded of its sacred meanings, detached of its religious connotations, not opposite to ephemeral and artificial pleasures…

Like what kinds of modern pleasures?

Smoking marijuana, taking cocaine, morphine, hallucinogenic products, Prozac…watching action movies, scary movies, science fiction movies…all kinds of musics, concerts, all kinds of variety of food, visiting remote regions, seeing new cultures and civilization…wearing variety of clothes…engaging in a variety of physical activities and sports…

The German philosopher Kant tried to demonstrate that happiness bears No Moral meaning. For example, there are so many objective desires that people aspire to, such as wealth, glory, power…Can we agree that these “values” are at best controversial and not evident to the little people? So many exploiters and tyrants have been swimming in happiness

How happiness was characterized before the French revolution?

1. Epicure (341-270 BC) taught in his Garden to oppose the rigor of stoicism, and to converge toward a moral of moderation “Let’s not jump into any kinds of pleasure…There is no agreeable living without a hefty dose of prudence, honesty and justice…”

2. Seneca (4 BC-65) The individual should be capable of combining reason and character in order to find pleasure from his physical faculties “I am after happiness of man and not of his stomach…”

3. Leibniz (1646-1716): “Evil exists. Considering Creation as a whole, God did his best…The grain suffer in the soil before bearing fruits…Our suffering lead the way to the good, to the greater perfection…”

4. Spinoza (1632-1677): “The essence of mankind is the desire to be happy, to live good, and to act good…The only access to happiness is to know what determine our passions in the natural order of the universe…”

And what are the visions of happiness after 1789?

5. John Stuart Mill (1806-1873). All the pleasures are Not of equal values. It is better to be an unhappy Socrates rather than a happy imbecile. Individual happiness is not complete if the common good is forgotten and neglected…

6. Nietzsche (1844-1900): “Who cannot learn to take a break to forget the past, to enjoy the moment, will never appreciate happiness, and will never learn how render others happy…There is a level of insomnia, of rumination, and of historical meaning that ruin the living person and annihilate his happiness…”

7. Georges Bataille (1897-1962): “If happiness is a reaction to the call of desire, and if desire is a caprice incarnate…then happiness is the sole moral value…”

8. Michel Foucault (1926-1962): “Abstinence that leads to individual sovereignty is happiness without desire and without trouble…”

Many modern critiques and thinkers made it a business (publishing books of how to be happy…) to fall back into the archaic version of “learning to be happy…” Kind of  “if we know how to enjoy life in the cheapest way possible…” happiness can be in the reach of everyone…(except those dying of famine and of common diseases…?)

All that talks of ancient and modern ideas of happiness have no sense if not described and explained within the proper context of the period and culture. For example:

1. How an individual with a life expectancy of no more than 30 years can conceive of happiness?

2. How an individual living in the harshest conditions to survive may experience happiness?

3. How the European under absolute monarchies and with a life expectancy not surpassing 40 years could comprehend the idea of happiness?

4. How all those cow-boys of the Far West experienced the meaning of happiness?

5. Was happiness the same before, during and after the Chinese revolution?

6. Was happiness experienced in the same quality before, during and after the British dominion of India?

7. Has happiness the same meaning and value before and after the “Industrial Age“?

8. Has happiness the same meaning and value during this instant communication and traveling facilities?

9. Don’t you think as life expectancy reaches 80 years that happiness requires extensive planing and preparation as we hit retirement age? What can you do without talent after 60?  How can you be happy if your eye sight goes and your hearing capacity dwindle?

The next article intends to describe the feasibility of experiencing “happiness” within the proper context…

Note: Post inspired from a study by Ruwen Ogien in the French weekly Le Nouvel Observateur #2490


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