As a writer I am in a lot of coffee houses and man you see them everywhere. The unemployed men you pick them out in a second. They are a lot of white guys with beards and goatees. Grey haired. They meet people in the coffee shops and talk in hushed voices. They read with the paper hiding their face. They meet at park benches and walk up and down the street with other men. They are the displaced work force of the Great Recession who will probably never go back to work. Like cattle they have been marginalized early in the ungracious retirement that is a massive economic realignment.
Call it what you will but the economy will become something else. It will become a cyber based green based machine that will be global in scope. It will move away from brick and mortar and the jobs offered will be different than those that exist today. The upheaval of the economy is a massive displacement of people and skill sets that have experienced sudden obsolescence. This is not a pause, this is a metamorphosis that will shed older workers like leaves that have grown brittle.
The young workers will fill the funnel first and then there might be some filling in. But middle aged white men will not be called up. There has been a fundamental shift in the tectonic plates of our everyday life and the slushy credit market that allowed companies to carry people in bloated management does not exist and will not exist again. That great run started by the greatest generation fizzled with the rise of China and the implosion of the derivative market. The funny money of twenty years vanished into the Monopoly board and left only the players...but without a game or money or properties worthless, the game is shelved for the new reality of Don't Wake Daddy...because daddy has nowhere to go.
William Hazelgrove's new novel Rocket Man is due out in September. The story of a man who moves to the suburbs and loses his mind. www.billhazelgrove.com