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The McFuture with Steve Faktor
26 minutes | Sep 2, 2021
15 Tactics That Protect Elites & Enforce Status Quo [Patreon Peek]
https://youtu.be/vIoerJGrroc A very special peek at a great episode for Patreon members about 15 sneaky tactics establishment institutions use to protect status quo. You can also watch this (and subscribe) on YouTube. To hear the full episode, sign up on Patreon for this and lots of member exclusives for only $5 a month. If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for killer exclusives & pre-releases!
44 minutes | Aug 3, 2021
Victoria’s [Dumbest] Secret | The McFuture Podcast
https://youtu.be/LAE-OYDakKI Fashion runways are about to look VERY DIFFERENT… Is it possible to resurrect a dying brand that was built on TWO MASSIVE LIES? Why Victoria’s Secret is about to learn this lesson the hard way. Awesome episode on Victoria’s Secret reinvention. Warning: mature themes & immature humor ahead! Watch this episode (and subscribe) on YouTube to see it in all its graphic glory. If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for killer exclusives & pre-releases!
33 minutes | Jul 20, 2021
Why our FriendSHIP Sailed
https://youtu.be/4JHsLJH0Rdk This might sound crazy, but the TV show ‘Friends’ was even more preposterous than suspected…by New Yorkers, real estate agents, and psychiatrists. Like scraping together $500 for an emergency, most Americans can’t find three friends to rub together – much less five, in a luxury apartment, without rats the size of dachshunds. As recently as 2004, the average American was satisfied with nine close friends, but a recent Gallup survey showed that number plummeting, especially for men. Why?? Let’s explore why this is happening and how we might be able to salvage this titanic social trend. Friendship, Sinking Here are Gallup’s findings: In 1990, only 3% said they had no close friends. Today, it’s up to 12%! The rest of the chart isn’t much rosier. Except for how many claimed to have 10 or more close friends. That dropped from 33% in 1990 to 13% today. Good. No one has that many close friends, besides Santa and Putin. In fact, there might be some definitional issues with the survey. Where does each person set their bar for “close friend”? Here’s my “close friend” spectrum: Calls you on your birthday Drives you to the airport Helps you move Lets you crash in their home for a month Lends you $2,000 Helps you hide a body Anything less and they’re not friends, they’re Pokemon. https://twitter.com/ideafaktory/status/1275515767874781187 Things are worse among men. Today, 15% say they have no close friends. Though both sexes showed major declines and 50% of each have three or fewer close friends. In The Economics of Happiness I declared “happiness is the last thing left to innovate”. Given how strongly friendships predict life satisfaction, we’re sliding towards a serious happiness epidemic. And neither bat nor Fauci can help. Why is This happening? There are many reasons for declining friendships. Here’s my hypothesis on four big ones in the US. I suspect many developed countries have similar issues. 1. Aging Crew Youth is a time of discovery…and captivity. We’re shepherded from school to sports to to parties to camps (summer, not labor) – with hordes of other kids our age. We make friends, discover music, find and smoke our parents’ pot. But as we age, everything about us freezes in time. We settle on Elton John, a short list of favorite fritters, a haircut from our glory days, and a handful of comfy, relationships. Discovery ends. We become our parents. Now, imagine this happens to an entire country. In 1980, the median age of an American was 30. Still young enough to get past the bouncer at a club. Today, the median American is pushing 40 – and being dragged out of Studio 54, for looking 44. As Tiny Dancer blares from the radio on our ride back to the burbs, and the bleeding subsides, we know our days of discovery are over. Barring any extraordinary feats of rejuvenation. Lip fillers. And since it’s now fashionable to break everything down by race, what kind of unfashionable monster would I be to avoid it? White people so old. So, so old. Even in a chart ending in 2014, the median white…aka vanilla…was over 43! Practically, eating steak from a blender. Other races are inching upward, too. But besides Asians, all others were under 35. (If you can find a more current chart, let me know.) This makes me think of my dad, now 81, who I’m told is white, even though we’re Soviet immigrants who spent most of my child hood stomping roaches. He’s a reasonably healthy former engineer, who follows current events. He can work the internet, Android, and WhatsApp…at the approximate speed of global warming. He has three Kindles, for some God-forsaken reason. And, my number for unlimited tech support, a Groupon I don’t remember offering. Yet, he has no friends. Where’s he going to meet them? On FOX News FriendFinder? (That’s not a half-bad idea… They can call them Silver Foxes or Antiqfa.) It’s sad he has no access to male camaraderie, intimacy, or an outlet to complain about my mom, who incidentally has friends, and wow do they get an earful! From the macro to the micro, it’s not hard to extrapolate our recent political tensions and all the insecurity that comes with your best days – and relationships – entering the rear view mirror. 2. SinkinG birth rate When you look deeper at why our median age is rising, a big factor is birth rates. They are PLUMMETING – here and across every developed nation. The connection with friendships isn’t obvious, but hang in there… Child-free adults convince ourselves we’re going to conquer industry, become Thelma and Louise, and live out every wild, care-free fantasy. Nope. We settle. In houses. With dogs. And Hondas. Not one car chase or gunfight to our name. This isn’t even Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants – or Travelling Wilburys. This is suburbia. And suburbia demands KIDS! Not only are kids the main business model for the burbs – and 40-somethings, but kids are the final friend-discovery mechanism for adults. Long after we’re far too hideous and decrepit to meet people in schools, bars, clubs, and parties, there’s kids. Their schooling, activities, and other obligations become our way of meeting and bonding with those who share a common purpose – keeping them off the pole and off the dole. Even socially, without kids as a binder, middle-aged couples, divorcees, and singles have all the chemistry and majesty of a tent city under a bridge in LA. What’s left? The dog park? Fido’s poop is not the stuff great friendships are made of. 3. PIlgrimage to cities As I wrote in The Economics of Happiness, we’re crowded, but alone. 3. CROWDED BUT ALONE No culture exalts individuality, independence, and hero worship like the US. That approach has created some revolutionary entrepreneurs and iconic achievements. But these days even when our heroes collaborate, they produce something more like The Avengers – a collective of self-absorbed assholes who prefer to do their own thing, in their own way, for their own reasons. Now imagine more people than ever being able to trade-in their “we” for “me”. That’s exactly what happened. We’re on our own. Alone. By choice. Men and women started earning enough money to stay single longer. Pets and roommates replaced spouses. Those who do marry, divorce more often despite evidence that married people live longer. Birth rates in the West plummeted as it became cheaper to buy a yacht than raise a child. Many Americans would rather Kickstart a stranger’s company than pay for diapers and day care. Plus, old age just isn’t as scary in a world where meat arrives on Styrofoam instead of on its own four legs. Long, child-free lives shift the burden of happiness from family and community to career…and the occasional trip to Jamaica. All our eggs sit in the work basket, hoping they hatch happiness – if we sit on them long enough. – The Economics of Happiness But we can’t talk about the rise of lonesome cities, with their hordes of Tinder zombies and office drones, without discussing the hollowing out of small towns and suburbs. As blue collar work disappeared, so did youth, searching for opportunities. Their departure left aging husks of loosely employable residents, invisible to the information economy. Too old to re-train. Too tethered to depreciated homes with nearly-paid off mortgages. Some are addicted to prescription pacifiers or meth. Great friendships rarely spawn from decay. And we have lots of decay. And the youth who left weren’t much happier for it. A whopping 22 percent of millennials say they have “no friends”. Trading community for tiny cubicles, tiny apartments, and a tiny taste of polyamory seems quite Faustian. 4. Capsizing of Community When I first started thinking about our friendpocalypse, the first suspect was my phone. As I dictated my notes into its comforting abyss, I wondered, ‘Is this little time thief – and these avatars my…friends?’ Will any one of them rush over to clear my search history, if I suddenly die watching a Victoria’s Secret runway show? But this trend pre-dates social media. In his terrific book Bowling Alone (published in 2000), Robert Putnam sifts through vast amounts of data on how we’ve become disconnected from family, friends, neighbors. It’s only now becoming more noticeable. Just like the pandemic accelerated trends we were already seeing – remote work, remote healthcare, online delivery, mobile payments – social media did the same to community and relationships. As we branch out to form virtual communities, we find them unwieldy, fleeting, cold, and lonely. Because they’re held together by weak bonds of interest (“I love sushi, too!”), not sturdy bonds of mutual necessity (“Let’s fix Bob’s roof!”). Digital relationships are like M&M’s – satiation without nourishment. They create a placebo effect that slowly robs us of humanity. Tech got way ahead of us. Our biology, psychology, economy and culture haven’t adjusted. And maybe never will. Maybe we triggered some weird new form of Darwinism, where only Kardashians and TikTokers survive, because they’re genetically optimized for “followers”, not “friends”. In the meantime, we’re still tribal. That need for community remains innate, but increasingly out of reach. 3. We’re still tribal. We don’t rely on communities for physical survival anymore. Much of that has been outsourced to government and industry. Social security, sanitation, police, 401K’s, etc. Americans move out of the house by 18 (or run away by 12), but we still crave community. Ever wonder why there’s a Chinatown in every major city on Earth? (Even more in China!) We crave the company of others like us. Tribes were always built on need – finding, defending or capturing scarce resources. Or, an irrational love or hate of someone or something – real or imagined. With need gone, we cling to the irrational to glue our new, shoddy tribes together. – 5 REASONS WHY BULLSH!T WON Is This Bad? What if we could use more quality time alone with Minecraft? Maybe the digital world works for many. And if you’re still reading this, you chose to spend it with me, a virtual stranger, instead of speaking with a co-worker or calling a sick friend. I might not even be real, just some bot tossing word salads. Well, all the evidence shows this isn’t working. As friendship declines, depression, drug use, suicides, shootings and and countless mental health indicators flash red. Only so many of these can be blamed on Tucker Carlson or Karl Marx. People are breaking down, focusing on the wrong things, withering in isolation, often self-imposed. The good news is there’s hope. what now, Captain? Without realizing it, since 2010, I anticipated and mused about the many deaths that brought us to loneliness – death of masculinity, analog happiness, tolerance, truth, and the American dream. Today, they’re chapters in America’s autobiography. They chronicle the rise of people like Jordan Peterson and more broadly, self-help, therapy, wellness, and self-medication. So what’s next? I won’t pretend to have all the answers. But below are my best clues, so far, on how to overcome our loneliness epidemic. [I’ll leave the broader challenge of happiness – and what institutions can do – for another time, but you can start with The Economics of Happiness. Over time, I’ll build on these themes in this newsletter and on The McFuture podcast and Patreon, so subscribe!] I divided potential solutions into three categories – stopping, starting, and hoping. Stopping Our days are filled with activities that drive isolation. I truly believe that those who can resist porn, social media, and other digital temptations will not only have a huge evolutionary advantage, but unlock countless hours to engage with others in meatspace. (No, meatspace is not my new adult website. It’s my shorthand for the real world.) Who better to model what we shouldn’t do than those who built our e-ddictions? Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and other Silicon Valley titans don’t let their kids near their own monstrosities. Their kids build go-karts, knit, cook and ostensibly, calculate their inheritances on an abacus. This is no accident. https://twitter.com/ideafaktory/status/1034682752451457024 Drugs, poor nutrition, lack of sleep, gaming, and overconsumption of entertainment, and overstimulation are all the things I did before writing this… The temptations are real. But the more of these we can stop doing, the more capacity we unlock for healthy activities. Like what? Starting In 2019, I wrote… Life is servitude to our obligations. All contentment depends on it. Obligations we choose bring satisfaction and joy. Ones imposed or mandated by circumstances feel oppressive. – Obligations I think the key to life – and reconnecting to others – is ruthlessly seizing control of our obligations – the implicit and explicit promises we make to our children, partners, and others we care about. In a world that doesn’t need us, we must make ourselves needed. We simulate the necessity modernity took from us. For most people, that means having a family. I know that doesn’t sound especially hip or enlightened. But family always was – and will continue to be – the glue for every successful society throughout history. It also tethers us to reality in ways nothing else can. Not friendships. Certainly, not work. Comedian Tim Dillon said it best, “Very few people are going to have a career that fulfills them on a level where they don’t have to have kids.” I have friends without kids who are constantly finding new adventures. They’re satisfied with their lives and relationships. But others are desperately low on Netflix series to binge and new booties for their cats. Whether it was by conscious choice or cruel circumstance, this is a ship that always sails. Take it from a guy who’s watching his leave port. Almost as important, is defining our values and living by our principles. This one’s not getting easier. With faith declining across the west, there’s no other vessel for values on the horizon. If there were, it would probably come from China, piloted by Captain John Cena and his crew of Uighur slaves. (In The Future Is Belief, I explore the chaotic state of filling the faith-sized hole in our lives.) Those with stable finances and a useful skill can find meaning in helping those in need. For a long time, I taught success skills to high schoolers through Junior Achievement, but you do you. Just like faking a smile eventually makes you happier, helping others is the greatest form of self-help because it creates bonds that lead to discovery, that lead to meaning. Do enough meaningful things and eventually, they add up to purpose. There are even “family-on-demand” services like Papa that match youth to lonely retirees. On paper, it’s perfectly engineered to steal their savings. No, I’m joking! It’s actually a great way to solve the loneliness dilemma, but I wonder if we have the will to make this model a success. I once speculated that daily exercise, healthy diet, and a puppy could replace 70-90% of America’s therapy and antidepressant use. Just look at this chart and tell me we’re not being milked for profit. As a first-time dog-owner, there’s nothing like a puppy’s bowel movements to force you out of the house regularly to engage with the world. The cuter the dog or sadder the rescue story, the faster you’ll make friends – or slowly descend into embarrassing baby talk with this furry ignoramus. Hoping Economics, politics, technology, and culture have powerful secondary effects on our lives. But I put them in the “hope” bucket. Most are beyond our control. At best, we benefit by understanding them. Changing them requires years of organization, toil and commitment – with no guarantee of progress. I’m not sayin not to fight for grand visions. They do matter. And they can help you meet others who share your passion. But if we’re solving for friendship, helping those around us, in humble but tangible ways, packs much more bang for the buck. OK, this piece is far too long, already. To be continued… If you enjoyed this, please share with others. The permanent weblink is here. (Or unsubscribe using the link below.) Listen to this episode on The McFuture Podcast on your favorite podcast app or YouTube & support my work on Patreon, with lots of member exclusives, including forthcoming healthcare book. Follow my raw, malformed ideas on LinkedIn & Twitter. If your company needs a killer speaker, help figuring out the future, growth strategy, or what/how to innovate, email IdeaFaktory here.
88 minutes | May 20, 2021
BAD HELPERS with TORRAINE WALKER | The McFuture Podcast
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emHvE3yv5fo Torraine Walker is a writer, activist and founder of Context Media Group. He joins Steve Faktor for a smoking-hot, no-BS conversation about race, Black Lives Matter, policing, education and the black family. THIS is the honest conversation everyone says they want, but really don’t. This is how two people with very different perspectives can find common ground, shared humanity, and have a few laughs at Alissa Milano’s expense. If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for killer exclusives & pre-releases!
41 minutes | May 11, 2021
BasecampFIRE: How ‘Woke’ Broke An Iconic Tech Firm, ARE YOU NEXT? | The McFuture Podcast
https://youtu.be/rWtbJP7lDYU?sub_confirmation=1 Basecamp is an iconic tech firm with outspoken founders that’s collapsing from wokeness. Your company and career will be next! Here’s their story and the profound and hilarious survival guide you need. Watch the awesome video version here and please subscribe to the YouTube channel. If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for tons of member exclusives & pre-releases!
38 minutes | Apr 17, 2021
THE C-WORD | The McFuture Podcast
https://youtu.be/wgVvVoa-Byk In this episode – the penultimate in this social media mini-series – I reveal two of the biggest secrets behind cancel culture, who the real government is, and why the next President will be a good little boy or girl. Also, please share the show with others, subscribe/comment on YouTube, and most important – review it on iTunes! This really helps with visibility. Thanks! CONTENTS: 00:38 The New York Times Daycare Center for Won-Percenters 08:36 Kamikaze Saviors? 13:25 The Softest Cancellation 15:40 Dirty Secret of Facebook Groups 17:09 Method = Principle 20:01 Monopoly Insurrections Perks 26:48 The Underlying Stupidity of Alternative Networks 28:14 The Real Impeachment Powers 30:51 The Oral High Ground on China 32:40 Is #FreeSpeech a Civil Right? 35:26 Disappear, Shakespeare! (Links are to YouTube timestamps. You can watch the video here.) If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for tons of member exclusives & pre-releases!
34 minutes | Apr 9, 2021
Snitches In Da Clubhouse | The McFuture Podcast
https://youtu.be/DVKHB4axRmY?sub_confirmation=1 In the latest episode, Steve eviscerates the sorry state of journalism, rise of corporate media operations, and the frightening new social network Clubhouse. 00:10 – 4 ways journalism failed us 07:50 – Can VC Andreessen Horowitz start a “corporate media” revolution? And the 3 things they must do to succeed 14:45 – The unholy alliance in media 19:56 – Is Clubhouse the new podcasting or the unfettered destruction of all that we know and love? 24:49 – Annoyed Freud: Deciphering the 7 Motivations of Journalists 28:06 – Who’s the best acquirer for Clubhouse? 31:20 – The Greatest Innovator on Clubhouse Is……..? Please share, comment, subscribe (Timecode links are to the YouTube video you can watch.) If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for tons of member exclusives & pre-releases!
22 minutes | Mar 31, 2021
Vaxpertise & The Problem With Experts
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cY7E8PkvyEA&modestbranding=1&showinfo=0 America has an expertise problem and it’s not what you think. The latest episode explores the limits of experts and expertise, the problem with “authoritative sources”, and why we’re kicking science in the nuts. Right. In. The. Nuts. (You can also watch it on YouTube here.) If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for tons of member exclusives & pre-releases!
20 minutes | Feb 16, 2021
A Word From Our…Chief Discrimination Officer
The one truth NO ONE in corporate dares to discuss about power, diversity, and discrimination. What if the thing hate is also our best hope…? If you work for a corporation or have a business, you won’t want to miss this episode. If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for tons of member exclusives & pre-releases!
22 minutes | Feb 5, 2021
99 Racists | The McFuture Podcast w/Steve Faktor
A KILLER episode sparked by Steve’s heated debate with an ungrateful immigrant friend. This will make you laugh, it will make you mad, and definitely make you drink, er, THINK! No sacred cows are spared in the hunt for truth about immigrants, racism, China and Steve’s hypocrisy. Tag @ideafaktory on social media and tell us what you’d do with 99 racists. The audio is great, but watch the souped-up YouTube version with loads of visuals & hidden jokes. If you enjoy this, please like/share/review/subscribe on: YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, TuneIn, RSS Support on Patreon for tons of member exclusives & pre-releases!
57 minutes | Dec 15, 2020
Lord of the Fries | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor #9 | The McFuture Podcast
HOW DARE YOU miss this episode of The McFuture on philosophy, self-improvement & wayward youth!?
45 minutes | Dec 4, 2020
MEDIA MONSTERS | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor #8B | The McFuture Podcast
Steve Faktor's rowdy romp through the heroes and monsters who control free speech.
33 minutes | Nov 19, 2020
ECONAMASTE | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor 8A | The McFuture Podcast
Another gem featuring Steve Faktor's wisdom & wisecracks on economics & finance with a touch of Zen only he (or Steven Seagal) could deliver
36 minutes | Nov 1, 2020
…Entrepreneurs Are From Venus | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor # 7D | The McFuture Podcast
Wisdom & wisecracks about entrepreneurship, success and strategy for every entrepreneur, founder and freelancer.
47 minutes | Oct 29, 2020
Employees Are From Mars… | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor | The McFuture Podcast
wisdom & wisecracks about innovation, corporate work and the technology takeover.
26 minutes | Oct 27, 2020
The Pandemigod | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor #7B | The McFuture Podcast
What's the bottom line on this never-ending pandemic, lockdowns & all our saviors. And why is Steve Faktor so annoyed at Anthony Fauci?
39 minutes | Oct 23, 2020
BEAUTIFUL BULLSHITTERS | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor #7A | The McFuture Podcast
A tour de force of Steve Faktor's madness DECONSTRUCTED by topic. POLITICS covers revolution, bullshitters vs liars, conspiracy queens, fixing voting & stripping
38 minutes | Oct 1, 2020
Rumble in the Nursing Home: Presidenture Debate 1 LIVE with Steve Faktor
Steve Faktor's pre- & post-debate m̷o̷n̷o̷l̷o̷g̷u̷e̷s̷ rants from this week's Presidenture Debate. Politics suck.
44 minutes | Sep 25, 2020
Patreon Peephole: Highlights from Recent Member-Only Episodes
Awesome highlights from recent member-only episodes of Mistweeted by Steve Faktor on Patreon
59 minutes | Sep 13, 2020
Why So Fury U.S.? | Mistweeted by Steve Faktor #5 | The McFuture Podcast
Steve Faktor explores American Fury, startup cults, scope creep, certain idiots & much more! Controversy shall ensue.
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