December 11, 2012
In a new report entitled “Global Trends 2030: Alternative Worlds”, the National Intelligence Council (NIC) says that due to global economic changes, shifting in investments and the sudden rise of other nations to buck the US as the world’s superpower, the balance of “megatrends” in sovereign countries is transforming the world. Intelligence agencies in the US consulted with private corporations, academia, think-tanks, those of political influence and leaders in 14 countries; as well as the European Union.
Global dominance is leaving American shores for other world leaders to come and claim their possible rise to power.
Christopher Kojm, chairman of the NIC states: “We are at a critical juncture in human history, which could lead to widely contrasting futures.”
As the global economy redefines power throughout the world, vulnerabilities have cropped up which have inflated the fears of individual economies and stunted growth. Kojm refers to this symptom as “malleable” and encourages “decision-makers, whether in government or outside, to think and plan for the long term so that negative futures do not occur and positive ones have a better chance of unfolding.”
Matthew Burrows, lead author of the study for the NIC explains that 7 main issues are driving change and accelerating the “tectonic shifts” that are happening across the globe:
• Growth of the middle class
• Access to new technology
• Shifting economic power
• Aging populations
• Demand for basic resources – food and water
• Energy dependence
The reverberation of the implosion of the euro, potential pandemics, the Chinese economy failures, nuclear war and the ever-present cyber-attack loom in the not-so-distant future and increasingly influence the course of national history for all nations.
The biggest debate implied in the report that if this continued course “will result in a global economic breakdown or whether the development of multiple growth centers will lead to resiliency.”
Constrains of a bourgeoning population continuing to rise is predicted to cause more strain all-around by 2030. The middle class, being a consumer-machine is viewed as unsustainable and a threat to life as we know it. Urbanization is the most logical “quick-fix” to this immediate problem; however there is also the issue of man-made climate change as well as resource allocation which is expected to be in short supply due to the effects of one another.
Resource management is a new concept beyond conservation ideals of the past. It is the mindset being spurred into the social meme to decrease the psychological pressure of the reality we face as access to food, water and energy is incrementally being taken from the general population.
Burrows states: “You have a huge problem on the resource side. How do you manage all this prosperity that is putting a lot of strain on the resources? You have to have collaboration on the technology, you have to have a big energy or water project the world is really geared up for, because otherwise it turns into a bad scenario.”
Governments are expected to coerce the public and private sector corporations into submitting to new constraints on resources as power moves into the hands of global governors and global action is used to maintain order and balance. Predictive models as well as data profiling will assist governmental bodies in tipping the scales and gaining “control over society.”
By making the changes appear to be tipping the scales “more in favor of the individual than the state” the general public is ever-fooled into following their government without question – even as those promises of more freedom are dwindled away to nothing and an all-encompassing control grid is unveiled.
The governing role of the United Nations (UN) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are expected to quell any “ambivalent” or “resentful” feelings that may develop between China and the US as leadership shifts occur. The expectation of a “cyber arms race” is coming into focus as cyber and bio-terror weapons become readily accessible, and national digital infrastructure begins to define how a nation will and is able to defend itself in this new electronic warfare age.
In the report, the necessity of “fusion” wherein the US and China meld into a collaborative global unity is viewed as the solution to the coming problems. Without this scenario, it is envisioned that “interstate conflict[s] increase” and “the US draws inward” which will halt all growth toward globalization.
Failing to fuse together will also result in a world where “inequalities explode as some countries become big winners and others fail. … Without completely disengaging, the US is no longer the ‘global policeman.’”
Communication dominated by social media and electronic signals is a drastic move from the physical realm, yet is projected to take over the world, leaving the stronger nations to battle out who will define the path way into the next century.
Megacities are the next phase of societal living as 2/3rds of the world’s population move into urbanized centers, connected through technological advances and protected by digitally controlled healthcare. In this respect, the current “death” of the middle class is simply viewed as a transformation with the rise of the global middle class wherein the better educated, technologically savvy and physically healthy are coalesced into a one-for-all mindset and the individual is fallen to the wayside for the achievements of humanity as a whole.