But while I will avoid dwelling too much on the what and when, I will unabashedly advocate for a particular answer to how. Thanks to virtuous cycles already gaining in power, I believe almost all effective responses to the problems and opportunities of the coming decades will emerge out of the hacker ethos, despite its apparent peripheral role today. The credentialist ethos of extensive planning and scripting towards deterministic futures will play a minor supporting role at best. Those who adopt a Promethean mindset and break smart will play an expanding role in shaping the future. Those who adopt a pastoral mindset and retreat towards tradition will play a diminishing role, in the shrinking number of economic sectors where credentialism is still the more appropriate model.
But there’s a reckoning in the works—an indigenous-led reckoning that has been building since the days of Dennis Banks, the American Indian Movement leader who died on Sunday, and well before. A reckoning that seeks to challenge this country’s long-cherished myths as well as its current role in the world. From Standing Rock and the nationwide fossil-fuel-divestment drive to the bold organizers challenging racist landmarks and dishonest holidays, movements have emerged that are teaching the United States about its true past and agitating for a much better future. And much of the action is taking place in cities—in Los Angeles, New York, Seattle, Minneapolis, and more.