MindBullets 20 Years


Euphoria sets in as energy glut reignites the industrial economy

President Hillary Rodham Clinton had tears of joy in her eyes, as she addressed the nation from the White House lawn, welcoming her fellow Americans to “a New Year, a new decade and a new era of prosperity!”

The United States is once again king of the heap. It’s hard to believe that only eight years after the threat of the ‘Fiscal Cliff’ things should be so rosy, but it’s true. Business is booming, jobs are plentiful, and America is the land of the free, and affluent.

Perhaps the biggest reason for this turnaround is the energy boom. Galvanized by fracking technology, which unleashed vast reserves of oil and gas, and spurred on by innovation in alternative energy technologies like nano solar and laser fusion, the US is now a net energy exporter, and a prime location for new industrial infrastructure.

China has suffered a symbiotic decline. As factories and jobs moved back to the west, China’s efforts to exploit their own shale gas reserves hit major obstacles. It was simply cheaper to import from the new gas giants, Britain and America. China was also suffering from the stresses of being the most unequal society in history, with labour unrest and political turmoil at an all-time high.

The maturing of ‘instant fabrication’ technologies like 3D printing also helped to return industry to where the skills and markets were – low wages became the last reason to offshore manufacturing.

With cheap energy and a new industrial revolution taking hold, Americans feel entitled to let their hair down, and celebrate. “Happy New Year!” yelled President Clinton, “You deserve it.”

Warning: Hazardous thinking at work

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