Reports from the Knowledge Labs about our recent findings, research topics, and interviews with lifestyle leaders who are creating their own futures.

How to stimulate your own powers of foresight. Consider the following thought provokers. Ask yourself, in these categories what are the brand new trends and forces? Which are the ones growing in importance? Which current forces are loosing their steam? Which have peaked or are reversing themselves? Which are the "wildcards" about to disrupt us in the future? POLITICAL AND TECHNICAL thought for food: Electronics, Materials, Energy, Fossil, Nuclear, Alternative, Other, Manufacturing (techniques), Agriculture, Machinery and Equipment, Distribution, Transportation (Urban, Mass, Personal, Surface, Sea, Subsurface, Space), Communication (Printed, Spoken, Interactive, Media), Computers (Information, Knowledge, Storage & Retrieval, Design, Network Resources), Post-Cold War, Third World, Conflict (Local, Regional, Global), Arms Limitation, Undeclared Wars, Terrorism, Nuclear Proliferation, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Governments (More/Less Power and Larger or Smaller Scale), Taxes, Isms: Nationalism, Regionalism, Protectionism, Populism, Cartels, Multinational Corporations, Balance of Trade, Third Party Payments, Regulations (OSHA, etc.) Environmental Impact, U.S. Prestige Abroad. SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC Food for thought: Labor Movements, Unemployment / Employment Cycles, Recession, Employment Patterns, Work Hours / Schedules, Fringe Benefits, Management Approaches, Accounting Policies, Productivity, Energy Costs, Balance of Payments, Inflation, Taxes, Rates of Real Growth, Distribution of Wealth, Capital Availability and Costs, Reliability of Forecasts, Raw Materials, Availability and Costs, Global versus National Economy, Market versus Planned Economies, Generations: Y, X, Boomers, Elderly, Urban vs. Rural Lifestyles, Affluent vs. Poor, Neighborhoods and Communities, Planned or Organic Growth. Got Knowledge?

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The Journal of 2020 Foresight
Saturday, July 22, 2006  

“I Used To Be Somebody, Damn It!” -- Trapped and Permanently Temporary

Chapter Four: The Tribal Territories

By Steve Howard, CKO
The Knowledge Labs

Table of Contents
Chapter One: Basecamp
Chapter Two: The Ridge
Chapter Three: The Outpost
Chapter Four: The Tribal Territories

“This song has to do with Earl Green, Sun Green’s father; Edith Green’s husband, Jed Green’s uncle (Jed the cop killer). Earl’s an artist. He’s always painting these beautiful paintings… and Earl hardly ever sells a painting…. So he’s traveling around. He’s got money problems and he likes to go in his camper; he’s got a Winnebago, like a camper you live and drive around and he drives around to different galleries with his paintings in his Winnebago, goes in to people and tries to get something happening. One night he stopped in a motel. He had a few personal moments with the computer and television set….”

Neil Young & Crazy Horse “Greendale”

DOUBLE NICKEL RANCH. There’s a dark side to “Staying Put” too long, especially, if your community matures and begins to decline. Or, your employer relocates to another town or city. If your region hasn’t diversified in the industries it supports, and if a sector like manufacturing finds it too difficult to compete and leaves for less expensive communities , then your specialty may no longer be marketable in your hometown.

Journal of 2020 Foresight: I take it that as you cross a threshold, directly below and to the right in your “4-Box Model, to the Trapped and Permanently Temporary scenario....

Eagle: The scenario headline gives it away, doesn’t it. The story describes families forced to do what they dislike just to make ends meet.

J2020F: Trailblazer would be proud. You can guess what this one is about, and that adds to its believability factor.

Eagle: We originally conceived this scenario occurring during recessions to 50 year olds who once commanded a big salary for work that has been outsourced.

J2020F: I know some of these people. They used to jokingly refer to themselves as, “I Used To Be Somebody!”

Eagle: But, now we see growing evidence that this may be the destination for Baby Boomers who hadn’t saved enough, didn’t inherit enough, and rented or lost their homes due to foreclosures. They’re looking for more affordable lifestyles while downsizing their expectations.

J2020F: And, this may also be the scenario for many who choose to consult without benefits, although if they had their way they’d find a good paying full-time job to replenish their nest egg.

Eagle: Yes. In the meantime, they can only offer an unmarketable or commodity-priced expertise in the community that they once could afford. If they choose to stay in the same general region, they fit the post-maturity and declining – but perhaps more affordable U3 Urban Core, C3 Second City Blues (now Micro City Blues) and S4 Inner Suburb tribal social clusters.

J2020F: What about leaving the region for a less expensive and a more self-sufficient lifestyle?

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