Towards a New Social Contract: The Reactions

Dear Reader,

Now the reactions.  I generally believe a pithy quote, like an exceptional dinner party guest, needs no introduction so by and large that'll be the format.  We'll begin with the eminently practical and work our way towards solutions:

"By the time my father reached age 6, the Soviet-American nuclear arms race threatened the destruction of the entire world.  By the time I reached age 6, the Soviet Union collapsed – leaving the United States as the unquestioned military power of the world."
Others disagreed entirely: "I gave it a chance, and although the data was good, most of the conclusions were disgustingly predictable: a giant Obama Apologia masquerading as journalism.  Reminds me of that ludicrous 2012 Economist endorsement. "
"What I believe has made America unique in history is that we have been the “land of opportunity” – where anyone, regardless of who your parents were, could rise to great heights if your talents and work ethic were sufficient. Our national focus was not on handouts but opportunity."
"I was “youth” during the tech bubble of the 90s’ and in some way it seems like this era imparted a sense of entitlement, a sense that everything would just keep ascending from there. But I was too young to understand cycles. Now, with more gray hair, I get it. Many in my generation never had to save for a rainy day. Until about now."
The Basic Bargain

"Of course the basic deal is broken.  Rich villains who commit fraud in plain sight get government bailouts, while everyone else has age-old protections like bankruptcy law stripped away from them.  Meanwhile, politics now boils down to one dollar one vote.  I believe in the noble peasant's ability to discern truth, but we continue to believe that the psychology of advertising somehow doesn't apply to political speech.  It does, and the individual is worse for it."
"The question of “Living Better” now compared to 80-100 years ago I feel  is more related to expectations... As a young married college student during the mid 1950s I dreamt of an annual salary of $9600. And being able to buy a house and car. All doable."
"To compare today’s annual pay rate, unemployment rate to those of yesteryear is I believe fallacious and groundless.  In manufacturing environments in finance disciplines including automation and data automation  affected   disciplines in many cases were non existent. So how to prove or disprove the essence of the thesis or what other parameters can be employed to reach a meaningful  positions.  What about the outsourcing dynamic? How is that effect encountered and made viable in the equation? The coal miner or steel crucible operator of 100 years ago is somewhat comparable to entry level positions."
PROGRESS

"Remember ten years ago:
  •         SECURE  Televideo  conferencing  eradicating  travel budget . IMPOSSIBLE.
  •        ROBOTIC Surgery and car Painting IMPOSSIBLE   NO Wounded and extended medical costs
  •       DRONES do more for less cost training and lives … use of
  •      Tanks and ATOMIC Bombs. OLD technology IMPOSSIBLE
  • All of Shakespeare stored on a cloud and read on an iPad HUH// IMPOSSIBLE

How are career models and pays schemas ascertained?"

"But in general, has the quality of life improved over time? Certainly over the middle ages, even over the diseases and infant mortality rates of fifty years ago... Who is to say that youth –with more focus on community service than ever before, with more technological advances than ever before, with more education – won’t find a brilliant way forward? I look at my own children and their friends and I’m endlessly impressed by their intelligence and innovation. I feel pretty good that the future is in good hands. Am I foolishly optimistic? Or am I refusing to buy into the sky falling?"
Solutions

"I am an optimist, and I believe that as more bring minds bring technology to the forefront of civic engagement and we move more toward a connection economy, our society will be more capable of influencing positive change as determined by its own members."
"In massively living beyond our means – and forwarding the bill to future generations – I believe we are in the process of destroying your and following generations’ futures. And it seems likely to me that if we stay on our current course of massive annual deficits, 10 years from now you will be saying “how could this generation have done what it did to you and your generation”? "
By far my favorite "solution" to these challenges:
"Have a constitutional convention.
Emigrate.
Save more - the real engine of growth.
Form new groups and models to encourage risk-taking.
Declare a jubilee.

Or keep working like the horse in Animal Farm."

Though it's all about framing I suppose:

"Right?  It’s like in football.  At the end of each day of football camp, there were always people muttering about how the coaches were trying to kill them and how unfair it all was that they’d done their best and still had to do more insane things tomorrow.  But then, because there was no other way forward except to do them, just about everybody would show up again in practice the next day and do it."
"I think our parents’ generation has given us the greatest gift of all, though: the skills required to solve the problem.  Look around.  Look at our friends and acquaintances.  Not for all have things gone well, or gone easily.  But most of us are clawing our way forward, driven to invent for society by that age-old motive: bettering our own lives."
"Life isn’t fair. It’s a roll of the dice. I’m not sure where the idea that all generations are entitled to a square deal is an accurate view based on all of history thus far.  But see comments above about young people. If there is any potential, it is there.  Does the future look opulent like it did after WWII or during the tech bubble?"