As I was growing up I learned that the only unforgivable sin in life is to be boring - a notion that collides somewhat with the current education system.
Tenured professors at universities are unusual beasts in nature, for they have no predator. Their jobs are safe, they don’t need to publish new research unless they really want to.
The result is not encouraging. How many technological breakthroughs have come from the universities? Or how many times we turned to professors to resolve an important issue?
Then look at the amount of money that is needed to get education in America and in the UK as well.
It’s a Ponzi scheme, which is what academia has to a great extend become. Young people are running up massive debts in a system that can’t reward them and there is a huge resentment coming in the next few years from the people who realize they’ve been had.
Also, if you massively increase the number of people who think they should go to a university, you can’t keep up a system that rewards people for having gone to these universities.
This creates a major imbalance in society.
One can look at it from different angle. Geopolitics is a pattern of power, and one of the elements that make it happen is technology. Meaning that the rise and fall of nations is in step with the rise and fall of technology. Core technology, to be specific, which branches into many areas of life, like what made Apple and Microsoft so powerful.
Now, what is the next thing that is coming? The one fact you can be certain of, is that it will be utterly unexpected, and it will be different from what came before and will drive power one step further.
The battleground in geopolitics is the next technology.
What comes after the decade long pause in invention?
When a really smart guy or girl, who can’t get a date, is not interested in anything digital anymore and starts to think about the next thing, this is when progress will happen.
If history is any guide, he will not be a graduate from a prestigious university; he’ll be working out of his parent’s garage.
Switching the topic, which is what guys say before they do and women just switch on the fly, the winter is now brutal in Canada and the army was sent to dig out the Atlantic Provinces from a massive snowfall.
It’s tough with the snow and the cold, long winter plus Prince Harry with Megan moving there. Thank God for Hockey Night in Canada and curling, where the most important part of the game is beer.
Prime minister Trudeau already offered to pick up the royal pair’s security bill while they’re here and it will go in seven digits. Nice of him dispensing other people's money so leisurely.
The weather is better in the Geneva area, where I was able to ride the motorcycle at +2C on a sunny day. I wasn’t doing a good job of it – no matter how warm I dress, the dexterity suffers and you need both feet and hands to make the Bimmer fly.
I end up with saying this - the upcoming BMW 1.8 boxer is not a convincing piece of equipment, big in the news as it is. It is meant to take on Harley, but whoever signed off on the design doesn’t have a sense of harmony or a sense of beauty.
They need the Italians to make it look dashing.
Tom Kubiak is the author of The Traveler