The Future – Governments’ Edition

A very short summary of the base-case near-term global future scenario at this point in time: Don't like it? Nothing is set in stone. Remember you cannot comply your way out of (even the banal, bureaucratic sort of) tyranny and do something about it. Don't understand it? Contact me and I'll talk you through the … Continue reading The Future – Governments’ Edition

The Future Starts Now

Yes, this is technically my own book - but I only wrote one of the 20 essays, so I am really more of a reader than a writer here too. Agency is a tricky thing. The less we use it, the more we lose it. The more we give up and outsource our responsibilities, the … Continue reading The Future Starts Now

Bad frames

As futurists, our role is to help others understand the world as it is; the likely futures ahead if we don't do anything about it; the trade offs and choices we face; and the complicated potential and probable unintended consequences and collateral damage of our present and future decisions and the incentives that shape them. … Continue reading Bad frames

Tend your garden, Defend your garden

Two quotes to get you through chaotic times, when it feels like things are spiralling out of control: Tend your own garden "Life is bristling with thorns, and I know no other remedy than to cultivate one's garden." ~ Voltaire In a literal and figurative sense : look after yourself, take responsibility for your own … Continue reading Tend your garden, Defend your garden

Henry Hazlitt

The Way to Willpower

“What can it profit a man to think if he does not dare to?” ~ Henry Hazlitt Henry Hazlitt is one of my favourite clear thinkers. The Way to Willpower is a straight talking guide to personal motivation (not my favourite genre by a long stretch, but somehow Hazlitt makes even self improvement bearable). The … Continue reading The Way to Willpower

economics in one lesson

Economics in One Lesson

“The art of economics consists in looking not merely at the immediate but at the longer effects of policy; it consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not merely for one group but for all groups” The premise of Henry Hazlitt's Economics in One Lesson is simple: Policy should be honest about the losers, … Continue reading Economics in One Lesson

the rise of the virtuocracy

The Rise of Virtuocracy

Virtuocracy : A society which is ruled by the most virtuous. Aristocracy, where one's station in life is tied to the accident of birth, is plainly unfair. Theocracy, where one's station in life is tied to one's proximity to the nexus of clerical power is likewise unjust. Meritocracy, where one's station in life is tied … Continue reading The Rise of Virtuocracy

Narrative Economics

Narrative Economics

Narrative Economics by Robert J Shiller has been on my to-read list for a while (I was waiting for the paperback edition to launch in South Africa. The book looks at the thesis that narrative a way of presenting or understanding a situation or series of events that reflects and promotes a particular point of … Continue reading Narrative Economics

5g geopolitics

5G Geopolitics (we’re way past Go!)

Geopolitics used to be a board game. Leaders defended and extended their physical territory in the terrestrial plane. Borders were defined by geography. Trade partners and military partnerships tended to fall in the same lines. We knew who our enemies and allies were, and where to find them. But things are no longer so simple. … Continue reading 5G Geopolitics (we’re way past Go!)

Be careful what you beg for

It has been rather depressing to watch people get exactly what they want. In South Africa in March, people begged to "be lead" through the COVID crisis - and they were. Crop-bottom pant regulations, arbitrary prohibition and all. They are now number three on the global misery index. In the UK, people demanded schools were shut down - … Continue reading Be careful what you beg for