I don’t think people realise how scary the future could be. Are you ready?
So we’re in the middle of the Knowledge Source Power Challenge – today, I want you to imagine you’re a horse.
It’s 1919 – 100 years ago. It’s around the peak of horse usage across the planet. Henry Ford started mass producing cars in 1913, but our cities are still geared around horses and horse transportation.
You’re one of thousands of horses in stables all over the city. Another horse gets led in, looking very sad.
“Hey mate, why the long face?” you say, because you are hilarious.
“I’m worried about our future. These cars are already doing things better than we can. In a few years, we’ll be totally redundant.”
“Oh rubbish,” you say. “That’s what they said when they invented the wheel. There will always be demand for horses. And if cars come along and start doing the things we’re doing, we’ll just be freed up to do other things. And those things will be better things.”
But in a few years, you’re dead. And most of your friends are dead, and the horse population plummets.
Ok, now imagine you are you. Imagine you have a job. Let’s say you’re a truck driver. Or an accountant.
I walk in looking sad. I tell you that computers are already doing many things better than us. Truck drivers and accountants will be the first to go, but superior technology is coming for every job there is.
“Rubbish,” you say. “There will always be jobs for humans to do. Sure we might lose a few jobs here and there, but that will only free us up to do better jobs.”
Now I don’t imagine for a second that we’re going to start culling humans or putting a stop on our human breeding programs. But there must come a point at which human labour is no longer economical.
It’s happened in many industries already. In automotive manufacturing it was decades ago. But thankfully, humans are very adaptable. An automotive worker could be retrained into a hair dresser or a graphic designer or whatever.
Our adaptability has meant we have remained economically viable for a long time.
But that can’t go on forever. We are not infinitely adaptable, and technology is advancing at an incredible pace. Jobs are being destroyed faster than we can replace them, and I really think at some point there will be very little left for humans to do.
And that doesn’t mean we’ll all being enjoying lazy leisure time, with robots serving us Margarita’s by the pool. It mostly likely means we’ll be herded into slums and sold opiates and handguns.
If you think our ‘leaders’ are going to look after you, you’re dreaming. That is one thing our system is not set up to do.
Sure, we live in a lucky country. If you’re temporarily out of work, there’s a safety net to stop you from going under.
But that safety net is not designed to support 90% of the population through permanent and irreversible unemployment.
I really think this is going to happen in your life time (unless you’re already 90). The writing is on the wall.
So what are you going to do about it? How are you going to survive the jobs apocalypse?
You’ve got to take your future into your own hands. You have to make yourself, and your wealth, bullet-proof.
This isn’t optional anymore. It isn’t a wishy washy, “oh, wouldn’t it be nice to be financially independent.”
It’s more like, “if I don’t take care of our future, my children might end up eating rats.”
And really, the jobs apocalypse is just one scenario. There are dozens of world changing phenomenon bearing down on us at rapid speed.
The one point I need you to understand is that you can’t rely on anyone else to save you. You can’t rely on the economy – it’s an abstract concept that has no preferences for the distribution of jobs and wealth. You can’t rely on the government – because the government is beholden to its sponsors, and they probably don’t give a fig about you and your whiny needs. And you can’t rely on society, because when everything breaks down, it’s everyone for themselves.
All you can rely on, is you.
So get ready. Get tough. And get yourself sorted.
The future is exciting. But if you’re not ready, it could be terrifying.