Troubled Times Ahead? by ProQuest


A Vision for 2012: Planning for Extraordinary Change, by John L. Petersen, is reviewed.

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tion improves, our ability to acquire      He presents us with much to look                pave a new way forward if they are
knowledge improves. More knowl-            forward to in the decades ahead.                willing to evolve their mind-sets and
edge enables greater innovation and,                              —Rick Docksai            behaviors: shift from national secu-
in turn, even more advances in com-                                                        rity to global security, choose inter-
puter systems, ad infinitum.                                                               connectivity and cooperation over
                                           Troubled Times Ahead?
   “The world is changing so much                                                          isolation and competition, live in
and so quickly that most people do         A Vision for 2012: Planning for Extraordinary
                                                                                           harmony with the environment and
not grasp what we are getting into,”       Change by John L. Petersen. Fulcrum             refrain from exploiting it, affirm the
Halal writes.                              Publishing, 2008.        value of local suppliers and thereby
   But new gadgets will not solve old      118 pages. $14.95. Order from the Futurist      soften some of globalization’s worst
problems such as environmental             Bookshelf,             impacts, and commit to individual
degradation and intercultural con-                                                         self-realization so as to minimize ad-
flict; they might even make things            The time for politics that only              herence to central authority in gov-
worse. Heightened resource con-            thinks as far as the next election must         ernments and organizations.
sumption will lead to heightened           end soon, warns John L. Petersen,                  “We will probably become some
pollution. While new materials may         founder of the Arlington Institute, in          new kind of human at the end of it
become abundant, necessities such          Vision for 2012: Planning for Extraordi-        all — it is that big and important,”
as oil and water will become scarce.       nary Change. Petersen links contem-             Petersen says.
And increased travel will breed new        porary news events to show that the                Technology will facilitate this new
cultural clashes. Halal notes:             world is headed for a phase of ex-              paradigm’s growth. Web-based de-
                                           traordinary change, “one of those               velopments will foster better flow of
 The transition to a global order of
                                           punctuation points in the evolution             ideas and worldwide consciousness.
 9 billion people demanding modern
                                           of our species that will rapidly pro-           Nanoassembly will enable abundant
 lifestyles will require a fundamental
                                           pel us into an unimaginable new                 living on smaller quantities of energy
 change in consciousness — or the col-
                                           era.” The transition can be highly              and raw materials. Energy from the
 lapse of an ecosystem, climate change,
                                           positive, but only if we evolve our             sun, wind, and other sources will
 nuclear war between nations, and
                                           thinking and our behaviors to em-               free us from fossil fuels. And biotech-
 other megadisasters will serve to prod
                                           brace the change.              
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