As you know from previous scribblings, I am fascinated by the notion of ‘Megatrends’, from a book of that name by John Naisbitt.
He describes changes as ‘trends’, things going in a particular direction, and he describes broad societal changes as megatrends. He has many examples over the ages, but the example I like best is prudery. In the 18th century, necklines down to there, gentlemen’s tights left nothing to the imagination, let it all hang out. In the 19th century, Queen Victoria’s time, prudery reigned; we became so worried about displays of body parts that not only were we thoroughly covered up, even piano’s had skirts as it was vulgar for the piano to show its legs!
He said trends go in a particular direction, then explode and people forget all about them, sometimes just because they become old hat, sometimes they are derailed by an event or upheaval. Remember yoyos? Or hula hoops? Leisure suits? Or even concern about dioxin? The prudery thing was fading with the loss of Queen Victoria, but was really exploded by the First World War, and after that we had the flappers, let it all hang out again, prudery gone.
I suggest we have been in the process of a megatrend these past 60 years or so, call it ‘progress’ or ‘political correctness’ or ‘causes of the hippies from the 60’s’. this trend has gone well past it’s best before date; concern about gender and racial equality has gone so far it is causing inequality; concern about ‘the environment’ has gone so far it is causing environmental degradation; concern about financial inequality has gone so far it is making inequality worse; concern about social inequity has resulted in a new serfdom for regular folk. The pendulum has swung way out there. We are putting skirts on our pianos, and as a result facing huge issues which threaten peace and stability in the world.
I am amused by the indignant outraged screaming in the press about everything Donald Trump does or says. Donald is not part of the big government/big corporation unholy alliance and they can’t buy him off, (no doubt they will try to blackmail him, and even his life is in danger). He is anything but ‘politically correct’. The humorous part is that the politically correct piano-skirters do not even realize they have joined forces with their enemy, the rich, in frantically trying to bring him down.
But I see him as a possible salvation. Perhaps he is the outside force that will explode the megatrend of Political Correctness before it brings us down to war, poverty, destruction.
Just another way of looking at things.