Re: NY Times - Welcome to the Failure Age

My RANT for the day:

If ever there was an article that summed up why my party - the Democratic Party - needed to break from the tired dogmas of the past, it is this amazing article from the NYT.

We are aren't just rushing into a new economic age - we are already there. It's an age where the INDIVIDUAL needs to be empowered to adapt and innovate, as they will become increasingly become more responsible for their own economic welfare, and less reliant on any one or set of employers or institutions. The social safety net will need to focus less on guarantees and more on flexibility to allow workers to achieve.

This transition won't be fun. As noted below, it will be terrifying. There will be winners and losers. But we can't stop it. We can't slow it down. If we try, we all lose.

A relevant excerpt from the article:

An age of constant invention naturally begets one of constant failure. The life span of an innovation, in fact, has never been shorter. [...]. By the 20th century, it could be measured in decades. Today, it is best measured in years and, for some products, even less [...]

The closure of the failure loop has sent uncomfortable ripples through the economy. When a product or company is no longer valued in the marketplace, there are typically thousands of workers whose own market value diminishes, too. Our breakneck pace of innovation can be seen in stock-market volatility and other boardroom metrics, but it can also be measured in unemployment checks, in divorces and involuntary moves and in promising careers turned stagnant. Every derelict product that makes its way into Weird Stuff exists as part of a massive ecosystem of human lives — of engineers and manufacturers; sales people and marketing departments; logistics planners and truck drivers — that has shared in this process of failure.

Innovation is, after all, terrifying. Right now we’re going through changes that rip away the core logic of our economy. Will there be enough jobs to go around? Will they pay a living wage? Terror, however, can also be helpful. The only way to harness this new age of failure is to learn how to bounce back from disaster and create the societal institutions that help us do so. The real question is whether we’re up for the challenge.



As always, my rants are my own, and don't reflect the views of my clients and or associates!

Jeff Ruppert