top of page

Like a bridge over troubled waters..
                            --Paul Simon

Our Mission We work to see what's coming over the horizon and to bridge social and cultural divides. We try to provoke conversations about government policies and individual actions that could make Planet Earth more liveable for our grandchildren and their children.

​Urban Youth Unemployment: A Problem Getting BIGGER | December 2022

 

You may have seen a hint of the problem of urban youth unemployment before the Covid-19 pandemic in the growth of the “gig economy” in the USA and other high-income countries.

You may have seen a hint in the college choices your children and grandchildren are making as they understand that the security of long careers with a single employer that graduates enjoyed 50 years ago can no longer be readily available. Life-long jobs in government or manufacturing or services like banking seem to be increasingly scarce, especially jobs that include substantial benefits such as health insurance, pensions, and paid leave for vacations and illness and parenthood.

What you may have missed is how threatening the growth of urban youth unemployment is in other countries, especially in China and India and across Africa.

I started focusing on this problem in 2017. The context for this decision is described in a Note at the end of this piece.

 

Don’t take just my word about the problem. Here are recent reports about youth unemployment in China and India:

The Rieffel family name comes from my great grandmother, Marie Adelaide Rieffel, born in Rosheim, Alsace, France, around 1840. My grandfather was her only child and she could not give him his father’s name because my grandfather was a love child, born out of wedlock. My great grandfather, Alexis Dieudonné d’Origny, born in Lorraine, France, was working as a physician to the Sultan of Turkey when he fell in love with Marie Adelaide on a visit to Paris where she was working with her sister making hats for high society. There is just as much fascinating history on my mother’s side of the family.

Subscribers will get an email notification when new content is posted.  My plan is to post new content once a week and to create a monthly Newsletter with the new content of the month and some more in-depth material, including material from other sources.

Thanks for subscribing!

What Happened to Our Sense of Community?

February 2024

image_d77e9148-c24a-4135-9e21-b5771719d40c_1080x.webp

Two years ago, I moved into a 2-bedroom apartment on the second floor of an 8-story apartment building with 91 units in the Dupont Circle neighborhood of Washington DC. I had
never before lived in an apartment building. The closest I came was living in dormitories when I
was in college and grad

school, and in the Bachelor Officer Quarters when I was in the US Navy. We have some serious problems in our building. The most serious is an “unruly tenant”, a large
African American man with some obvious mental health problems. He has been placed in this building by the DC Government agencies that try to help residents with mental health, drug, and related problems. He is a “Section 8 voucher tenant”. Section 8 is a Federal program that provides a “voucher” to very low-income people (the elderly and the disabled) so they can live in private sector housing. The voucher is a cash grant to the landlord for the difference between what the tenant is able to pay and the market rent for that unit. This is a deeply flawed program for a number of reasons, but...

Myanmar Update | Dec

A surprising turn in the conflict in Burma gets priority in this Update; meanwhile all is going well at Parami University.

Apologizing for My Absence | Nov

No new posts for more than two months because of my crazy life of travel and writing. I’m working on some topics of above-average interest.

The Termessos Phenomenon | Sept

Termessos is a city in Turkey that held off an attack by Alexander the Great in 333 BC. This is a story about historical preservation.

The Rieffel family name comes from my great grandmother, Marie Adelaide Rieffel, born in Rosheim, Alsace, France, around 1840. My grandfather was her only child and she could not give him his father’s name because my grandfather was a love child, born out of wedlock. My great grandfather, Alexis Dieudonné d’Origny, born in Lorraine, France, was working as a physician to the Sultan of Turkey when he fell in love with Marie Adelaide on a visit to Paris where she was working with her sister making hats for high society. There is just as much fascinating history on my mother’s side of the family.

Subscribers will get an email notification when new content is posted.  My plan is to post new content once a week and to create a monthly Newsletter with the new content of the month and some more in-depth material, including material from other sources.

Thanks for subscribing!

Lex-BI-head-shot-latest-2_0-1_edited.png

I don’t know when I started trying to understand things coming over the horizon that would have an impact on my life and on the rest of the world. There is some evidence that I was doing this in the 1960s.  Since then I seem to have developed a

pretty good nose for what’s coming, and had some success in writing about it.

bottom of page