When just newly-homeless and alone at age sixteen almost six decades ago, (http://thedrpete.wordpress.com/2012/12/11/thoughts-for-99-ers-from-a-once-homeless-kid/) and therefore in need of my own job and means to provide for myself, I had an aha experience, a eureka moment. When I obtained a job as a pot washer in a hotel’s restaurant, I determined to be “the best potwasher that’s ever lived”. As I was promoted and promoted again, I continued seeking and striving to be “the best whatever that’s ever lived”.
My orientation dictated that I be creative, unusually creative, at whatever job I was assigned. Indeed, it required that I be unique, someone with a monopoly in the marketplace at being me. At waitering, at bartending, at car parking, etc.etc., I sought to and, I believe, achieved being one-of-a-kind, not a commodity. Later, when a major university was looking to add a professor in hospitality and tourism business, and when they specified their criteria for the perfect candidate, that university determined that there was only one person in the world meeting them, me. That’s the negotiating and bargaining position to have, unique, a monopoly, no competitors.
Increasingly – indeed, geometrically-increasingly – Americans, American entrepreneurs, American businesses, and American nonprofits are so onerously-regulated – illegally and unconstitutionally, I must add – by U.S. Government executive-branch administrative bureaucrats, who are having the time of their lives dictating daily what we must and must not do and punishing us when we fail at it, that creativity, uniqueness, much less differentiation, becoming “the best whatever that’s ever lived” is now near-impossible.
Top-down regulation forces everyone to adhere to “best practices”, which are yesterday or yesteryear, certainly not brand-new, not futuristic, not increasing the size of the economic and benefits pies, just affecting how the stagnant pies are sliced.
What revolutionary product/service has been introduced in recent decades vis-à-vis transportation, getting from here to somewhere else? As close as we’ve had are drones, unmanned flying machines. Pilots of airplanes are required by the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) to have aboard and available at all times a hard-copy of the proper flight manual, a big and bulky thing. The FAA has demolished progress with drone technology by among other things also mandating the little drones also carry such a flight manual, that despite that there’s no one ever aboard to read them.
When grandkids or even non-family young folks have asked me in what field or discipline I thought they should major in college, I have for decades always said “something that doesn’t yet exist” or maybe “a dual-major in a combination that everyone will laugh at”. If I were asked today, I think I’d have to recommend the same, but abroad in a country with a much-higher economic-freedom ranking than the USA. There was a reason why America started as a small economy and for a while remained like other economies – with wealth a zero-sum game, never growing, just shifting it around – but then stopped being zero-sum like everywhere else and, indeed, grew rapidly to being 25% of global GDP.
Farming technology, the telegraph, electricity, the internal-combustion engine, chemical discoveries, the telephone, airplanes, medical and pharmaceutical discoveries, nuclear energy, television, computers, etc. etc. etc. Individual and small groups creatively inventing solutions for needs and wants consumers didn’t even know they had. Growing the pie rather than continuing to merely share it.
If I were a young adult today, I’d rather build my life and career in, say, Hong Kong or Singapore or Australia or Switzerland or New Zealand or even Canada, or a half-dozen other countries than in the ever-more-oppressive America. Heck, if I were among the poorest-of-the-poor, I’d rather as well be in those countries than in America.