Baby Boomers enact the New Normal
By Woodrow W. Clark II (*)
There is a “disconnection” between everyday life at home and business activities due to the
international spread of the COVID -19 virus. This problem inspired us to write about similar
issues that both of us have been involved in for decades. While we worked in different areas,
we always kept in touch. The discussions and debates now are what we all need to do next.
Being at home is the new “normal” by communicating with our children and grandchildren
only on phones and computers through Zoom, WhatsApp and Skype plus more coming out
every week. On a larger scale the “new normal” is what The Economist noted for economics
in five or six areas such as manufacturing, businesses, transportation, hospitality, sports and
more. Now the world is going through a new normal due to the pandemic. All of us baby
boomers need to know what this new normal is about for our children and grandchildren.
The big issue is what we can do want to address is what can we do in the “new normal”.
The USA and world are confronted with the pandemic over 300,000 deaths and ten times that
people have tested positively for the COVID-19 virus. We must enact the new normal today.
Think back to what our parents and grandparents did before and after WWII. This is a New
Great Depression and the next World War here now. For our families then and today, we
need laughter, dancing and singing. Today, the new normal is our children using the television
but mostly on computers, cell phones as they connect with their friends especially for online
games and taking classes that younger people play every day with a few families and friends too.
We all must help our children and grandchildren recover from the pandemic due to the loss
of jobs, money, health and social security benefits. We need our families to communicate
virtually as well as sing, dance and laugh as the graphic below does with Stay At Home Valley.
The famous Silicon Valley is south of San Francisco (SF) to San Jose which is known as the
Peninsula. We know the current world order ranges from technology companies to governments
came from Silicon Valley which we need in other USA areas, cities and states around the world.
There are a growing number of reports, media and research that cite the current pandemic from
past decades. Noam Chomsky reflects and interviewed on where and how the CORVID-19
came now with insights from the past. Chomsky retired from MIT as Professor of Linguistics
but also researches his past experiences and witnessing all this throughout his life. Chomsky now
is 91still researches and comments on current events like the pandemic now and what to do. So
does Bill Gates, founder and CEO (retired) of Microsoft also talks about the pandemic which over
the last ten years as he gave a TED talk and current papers on pandemics in the past and now. The
world needs solutions and actions now — not after the pandemic or in a month or two or more.
The New World order is now, tomorrow which is already here. Our children and grandchildren
especially are doing what is needed now due to the COVID-19 becoming a pandemic. In short,
we need to learn from them starting with music and laughter to virtual teaching and learning
how to use cell phones, computers, codes, algorithms and more. We all need to be together
in the new norm. Wayne was the principle author the preceding papers on “Baby Boomers”
for Thrive Global due to his experiences as the Director Substance Abuse in San Francisco (SF).
His work focused then on HIV AIDS among high risk people in SF. His career started in the
1970s and continued for 5 decades in other communities and cities around California. During
that time and SF City Woody (I) created Clark Communications due to his producing and
distributing documentaries that are all very relevant topics now such as: “The Workplace
Hustle” (Hosted by Ed Asner), “The Healing Force” (about Norman Cousins who created
“Laughter is Good Medicine” with 3 shorter documentaries hosted by Angie Dickinson)
and “Older Workers” (Hosted by Elliot Gould) and other topics. I mention this as one of
the key reasons that we baby boomers are needed today from past work, experiences,
careers and to enact the new normal.
The media then and now send out information, ideas in various formats for everyone to learn,
remember and share. The same need is especially significant today. A key into the new normal
is economics that needs become a science. In 1994, I was a Fulbright Fellow and met Professor
Michael Fast at Aalborg University, Denmark. We wrote papers in the 1990s and a book in 2007
updated as 2nd edition Qualitative Economics (QE) to become a science which is not just data,
graphics or statistics. I learned that when I became the First Manager of Technology Transfer at
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory the second largest research center then and now in the
world. While there for almost a decade, I “earned” a second PhD in to make economics into a
science that is both Qualitative and Quantitative (Q2E) in order to implement creative practices,
strategies, public policies, technologies for people in all communities.
Think about the global situation today. People (from businesses to governments at all levels) claim
that “we must get our supplies” in order to meet the current demands for toilet paper, towels, cell
phones, hydrogen fuel cell or hybrid and electric cars with more to come. The COVID -19 virus
pandemic needs to replace classical economics of supply-demand with government (S-D-G) as
the invisible hand was never was implemented. Now S-D-G it needs to be replaced as the next
papers present how this being done now with Circular Economics.
Case in point: California are the “freeways” where no one pays to drive on them which the oil and gas
industry wanted in order to control the highways and make a lot of money. But now the impact of the
pandemic from last year (2019) to April 2020 are empty due to a California Governor Gavin Newson
who issued a State Declaration for “everyone to stay home” in all sectors so that everyone is safe from?
getting the COVID -19 virus. There are many results from this declaration that were needed and
followed in other states.
The highways above are both in Los Angeles: one on the left in January 2020 and other on the right in
April 2020 due to Governor Newsom “Stay at Home” order. Fewer cars on the highways led to cleaner
air in Los Angeles and other cities in Southern California. As seen above in the bottom picture of Los
Angeles was cited in April 2020 as the “Cleanest City” in the USA .The world needs to stop the use of
fossil fuels for all transportation. Put that “to do” on the New Normal list is critical to stop climate change
now and future generations. Parks and beaches are closed in California such as Disney Land and Parks.
These parks, beaches and walking areas need to be part of the new normal. A key part of what we did then
in the 1980s is Circular Economics (CE).The next papers will focus on CE with cases being done today.
Reusing and even redoing topics (and the famous hosts of all of them) had said and done things, which are important today. A recent study by Yale University Climate notes that younger people and Millennials today
understand that climate change is important and needs to be stopped. We baby boomers need to be active to
stop the climate from changing Green Climate Development is the key.
Now many younger people walk, ride bikes or take mass transit which is good now to stop more pandemics.
CE reuses thin-film solar for roofs, windows but also for all solar powered cars. No need to even recharge them.
Next are all electric cars that will be powered by the sun. The #9 paper will have details on CE as an all solar-powered car has been invented and soon available. However, the NextGen needs help as they can do not stop climate change alone. We are baby boomers who created the NextGen! As I did over five years ago and then
gave more recently (January 2020) the keynote speech for the Beverly Hills City Keynote speaker for the
Workshop Series starting with Circular Economics for Sustainability. In the next paper you will see Circular Economics (CE) enacted in many unique ways. Above all, I am interested in making economics which both qualitative and quantitative economics.
We will provide more detail about CE and cases in the next papers. All of these papers will show and guide
all of us baby boomers. And feel free to contact us and even send examples of CE. Our connect information is below. Above all, we need to act now as the classical economics was never enacted and should not come back
as many politicians and economists are promoting. We need to enact the New Worldwide Normal today. The
USA must take actions immediately to lead that pathway into the future for our children, families and grandchildren.