Also available in : French
2015 : Annus Horribilis.
Since fifteen years, the world has entered into regression. We are in a state of war which does not name itself. This war is not against ISIS, nor against terrorism; it is a war launched by populism against humanism.
Every community has extremists : arabs, jews, french, americans, engineers, politicians, consultant and hair dressers. It is a law of life. In a peaceful world, each community controls its own extremists. At war time, not only each community denies having extremists, but excite the extremists of “the other camp”.
Todays world became psycho-rigid, paradoxically because of the fear to be accused of being an extremist. Words must be carefully chosen, acts must be given even more thought than expected, politically correctness is the norm, and this must start at kindergarden. In a nutshell, we have now entered the extremism of normality.
The objectives of this normality are well known and well described: it is the way the institution takes control over individuals. Moral tells us to do this and not that. Ethics teaches us how to decide our own acts at any moment, in any given context of our life. We are in a hyper moralizing society, from which ethic is banned. This implies a very centralized model, but where power became violence, where authority becomes rigidity, then repression.
In order to properly function, hierarchy needs obedient people. Community needs clever people. The people does not want anymore hierarchical and centralized models, but political rulers, as well as enterprise managers, do their best to prevent the paradigm shift; by fear to see the fall of their priviledge, by fear of the unknown, by desire to control. Todays world is govern by fear, and this is a catastrophy. The only fear to maintain is the fear of our own fear; because fear leads to populism, which is the entry point to fascism. From control, we shift to regression : government want to read all emails. The NSA now get information from everywhere, including politicians. We are entering the world of 1984; and soon Farenheit 451.
Gramsci says that “crisis is when the old is dying and the new is not allowed to be born”. Without reaching the extremism of the extrem, what is contained in this sentence is that all innovation starts by a disobedience.
This disobedience is precious: only it can lead us into the Digital Renaissance.
Let us quote an example, amongst many: Uber pop allowed almost anyone who has a driver’s license to become an occasional driver. This extraordinary social innovation may have implied two positive impacts. The first one was an increase in the success at university exams, because students had a better control on their agenda for earning some money and were no longer obliged to work in a restaurant at night, the precise moment they needed to revise for their exam. The second one is a decrease in the drug sale in the Parisian suburbs, by offering a better alternative for revenues. Unfortunately, a government governed by fear has decided to privilege the old world, more specifically the traditional taxi drivers, one of the least innovative population in the world, and also a very aggressive one. Government could have a minima tested this social innovation… So the only remaining solution is, unfortunately, to disobey.
Everytime I consider customers facing brands, citizen facing politicians, employees facing managers, I always see the same tryptic: fun, engagement, collaboration. Seriousness is no longer a value; people want to codesign; and understood, much better than our politicians, that we can only win collectively. Those are the three pillars of the construction of the noosphere, the sphere of all interconnected ideas, invented by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.
Only networked knowledge allows us to face, and hopefully solve, all big problems of our planet. Digital is its tool. The fact that governments want to control, and to even stop, the digital, is the sign of their weakness and fear. Their fight is backward, they will loose. History will credit them with control, and regression. Digital Renaissance will come from the people.
This is my biggest wish for 2016