THE GREAT NAMAZU WAS RIGHT....BUT THEN YOU KNEW THAT
|NAMAZU, 3,0000 YEAR OLD GIANT CATFISH ANALYST AND COMMENTATOR|
When Namazu first appeared in our pages we agreed to publish his epic "NAMAZU FULLY LOADED , THE FUTURE OF AMERICA. (and Part 2)This was nearly four years ago and the post is still controversial. In that post Namazu made a prediction of a coming energy boom in America based on new on shore natural gas and oil discoveries. He also noted that government ineptitude (during the Obama administration) at the federal level would slow the salubrious effects of this switch to being an energy exporter and cause a great deal of economic pain for the general populace. However, he predicted that the nation would eventually reap the benefit despite the government's ineptitude and that whoever was in office at the time would claim credit.
Unfortunately he also noted that some years hence around mid century America would face a new crisis as several technologies such as 3D printing, nano technology, and artificial intelligence continued to merge allowing more and more wealth in the form of manufactured goods, transport, and even many services to be produced with fewer and fewer humans. He noted that we are approaching a time perhaps 50 years out when it will be simply impossible to keep anything like 80% of the population gainfully employed and it will continue to worsen.
The Great Catfish asked the question that no one is asking yet. What is the alternative to our system that since the time of Capt. John Smith has been based more or less on the philosophy that "he who doesn't work, doesn't eat"? When technology makes it possible to produce great wealth but uneconomic to employ very many humans ("bipeds" as Namazu likes to call us) the Great Catfish could foresee only two possibilities. If the system of connecting an adequate amount of the medium of exchange (known today as money) remains solely connected to gainful employment; the ever shrinking population of the gainfully employed will have to form walled communities to protect themselves from the starving masses. Unfortunately with the mass of people unable to purchase the ever increasing product of the gainfully employed and the machines and computers the massive production goes unsold and the entire system collapses.
The only alternative that Namazu could foresee to this collapse would be a constant though gradual expansion of what we now call the social safety net and employment security law. By mid century he predicts that we have to be able to accommodate more than 20% of population being unemployed and even more being chronically under employed, or only sporadically employed. Namazu noted the probable social consequences of even well supported great masses of people being idle. His proposal was for the government to early on concentrate on the reform of employment law to make sporadic employment mixed with occupational study economically viable. Some of the features of the Namazu plan have been in place in many EU nations for years. First longer vacations are mandated at least 30 days for full time workers, more with seniority. This increases the need for temporary replacements provided by the sporadically employed. Education and occupational training at all levels would be not only free but adults over 21 would receive moderate stipends while doing anything from continuing education courses , to voc tech retraining, to post graduate school. The basic requirement for a worker /student to benefit from these laws would be occupational consistency or involuntary career change.
So basically if one looks closely at the prediction of the Great Catfish we see that he sees an American economy that runs in cycles of perhaps 30 to 50 years alternating between upheaval and emergence of new forms. At the time NAMAZU FULLY LOADED , THE FUTURE OF AMERICA. (Part 2) was written the Obama White House was with holding permits allowing America's now mostly idled liquefied natural gas terminals to reverse engineer from import operations to export operations. To this day billions are being spent on "alternative energy" but the most promising forms of alternative energy which are not solar photo-voltaic panels, wind farms, etc., but "drop in technologies" such as solar stationary engineering which simply converts solar energy into heat to produce steam to drive already existing turbines are ignored. Sometimes it seems that the promising and immediately available "drop in technologies" are ignored because they do not require the scrapping of our existing infrastructure but can be simply plugged in to the existing generation and distribution infrastructures and within their existing industrial site foot prints. It would seem the Obama administration insisted in terms of RD & D money and policy decisions that the nation must go off the fossil fuel diet despite our new abundance of such fuels and scrap the entire existing electrical generation and distribution net work regardless of economic consequences. And we all better get into solar electric cars whether the technology is ready or not. The attitude of the Obama administration and the "Deep State" towards energy policy is REVOLUTION NOT EVOLUTION. Unfortunately, for the bulk of the people, evolutionary change for the better is much less painful than revolution.
So now four years later our researchers are starting to pick up a trend among some economic writers to talk of factors such as "economic gravity" and 40 year economic revolutionary cycles. Sounds a lot like our catfish doesn't it? Recently there have even been some revelations on the national television news of late of the fact that we are on the cusp of becoming perhaps the largest energy exporting nation. And a couple of years ago week we received our print copy of the highly respected WorkBoat magazine and lo and behold on page 16 in the column of Kevin Horn titled "Inland Insider" which deals with the economics of America's inland barge services we find this quote:
"The next 40 years of energy in the U.S. will be very different from the last 4o. The positive changes are only beginning, including for the barge industry."
Well it seems more and more "biped" experts are developing the Catfish perspective. We have about 200,000 more readers now than we had when the Namazu first published these economic predictions. Those of you who were regular visitors from the beginning may recall the hot water that both Namazu and I got into shortly after he was hired, with our Directors. I have to admit to having my differences with his "Supreme Cat Fishness" but time has convinced me that my original decision to hire him as an analyst and the director's controversial and much debated decision to give him unfettered creative control were spot on. We suggest for those of you who are relatively new to the blog to check the post on the controversy that followed the original publication of NAMAZU FULLY LOADED , THE FUTURE OF AMERICA. (Part 2)
Johnas Presbyter, Editor