The tone and message of the Trump presidential campaign and the relatively weak support for the Democratic ticket are symptomatic of profound underlying change and problems in American society. Groups such as the white working class and rural poor for instance, who at first glance should see their interests to be with the Democrats, now make up a core constituency of Trump’s support. When asked why they support Trump it is because they see him as someone they feel pays attention to them and with whom they can relate even though many live pay check to pay check and he is worth billions of dollars.
This book is an excellent antidote to the pervasive dystopic tone dominating the media and public opinion. Diamandis and Kotler address this directly in Chapter Three “Seeing the Forest Through the Trees” which discusses how evolution has prepared us well for life on the grassland and in forests but not so well for a life with few real hazards and exponential technological growth curves, and how it interferes with our sense of possibility in being able to solve basic material problems such as global poverty.
The July 3, 2015 post “A Leisure Society Ready or Not” presented Transitionalism as the best approach; specifically as it relates to pending large scale unemployment due to automation, but more generally in how technology will impact our lives. I concluded the post with three points. The first, Transitionalism was the best solution because it embodies a value system that not only anticipates but applauds such a development. Second, comprehensive automation would allow people to devote their energies and time to improving themselves as human beings and society. Thirdly, if we are to derive the advantages offered us by such a development we need to shift from our tendency to do enough just to get by and begin setting higher expectations for ourselves and the society we live in.