Q&A Friday #65: The Most Important Trends That Will Shape Our Lives Over The Next 50 Years

Question: “Can you name the ten most important trends in the world that will shape our lives in the coming half century?” — mannning2

Answer: This sort of question is almost impossible to answer because a technological advance that occurs tomorrow or some, as Donald Rumsfeld might put it, “unknown unknown” might blow everything out of the water, but here are five trends, completely off the cuff, that I think might be worth watching.

The Rise of Radical Islam: Most Muslims may be decent people, but where Islam goes, death, conflict with the infidels, and terrorism always seem to follow. That trend is likely to continue for the foreseeable future unless Islam can start producing a lot more Ataturks and a lot fewer Bin Ladens and Al-Sadrs.

The Internet Generation: As the world is becoming more interconnected, it’s having a huge impact. In the US, it’s leading to more partisanship, draining the audience from big MSM outlets, and making it extremely difficult to control the flow of information for good and for ill (and, yes, it is sometimes for ill). The internet will also make it more difficult for totalitarian societies to maintain control over their populations, which is a good thing.

The Demographic Die-Off in Europe: The combination of plummeting European birth rates, massive welfare systems, and hordes of Muslim immigrants will lead to lots of trouble for Western Europe in the coming decades.

The Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons: As nations become wealthier and technologically more advanced, more nations are going to acquire nuclear weapons. Combine the spread of these weapons with the combination of stateless terror groups, and it’s much more likely that we’re going to see nuclear weapons being used in the coming decades.

The Social Security/Medicare/Deficit Crunch in the United States: We’re spending money in this country at a rate that is unsustainable and it is likely to get worse as more of our population gets old enough to go on the dole. In the future, we’re going to get to a point where we have to either very significantly cut what we’re paying out in Social Security and Medicare or face economic ruin. Given that old people vote out of proportion to their percentage of the population, my guess is that we’ll have to get halfway down the drain before we wise up.

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