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Men and the City Part 7: Let it Burn!

The Lions of March are roaring – do you hear them? March (from Mars the Roman God of War) is a time of change and upheaval, when the seasons shift, and the world renews itself in the unending cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. March saw the arrival of Covid just two years ago, the Ides of March memorializes the tyrannicide of Julius Caesar, and even the heavens forecast explosive, transformative breakthroughs ahead. (Pluto enters Aquarius on March 23) Possibly out of poetic symmetry, Animal Spirits whisper a tempestuous Spring this year as the Blitzkrieg implosion of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) (shut down in a week) echoes the Bear Stearns downfall in March 2008. What happens next is the question everyone is asking?

March ignited panic. We are only mid-way through the month and already bank runs at SVB set off a stampede of withdrawals from regional banks like First Republic, gyrating stock swings, meltdowns at teetering institutions like Credit Suisse and alarm bells on Wall Street. Millions of Americans and observers around the world are suddenly discovering a monetary system in the death throes. While older, wealthier, more established generations are shocked that such fragility exists, that Central Bankers are so reckless and clumsy, and feckless government bureaucrats are reeling this has been a long time coming. For the Red Pilled, the Doomsayers, the Bitcoiners, and rabble rousers of Occupy Wall Street or the Tea Party, the Matrix is finally overloading. Good riddance.

Generations of Discontent

For the last decade plus, younger generations – Zoomers (Z) and Millennials (M) – have felt the sting of turmoil. Millennials like me entered the workforce around 2008 at the onset of Global Financial Crisis (GFC). For many, perhaps most, this meant a permanent disruption of curriculum vitae, a fatal blow to income-earning capacity, to homeownership, to marriage and progeny. You might say that our entire generation experienced a failure-to-launch as a result. Over a decade later, Millennials (born 1981 – 1996) have about $5T relative to Boomers at $55T in net worth, a gap that will never be closed.

Likewise, Zoomers (born 1997 - 2012) have come of working age during the pandemic and now face a disastrous financial crisis of their own. Studies show that Zoomers entering the work force are the most distressed generation. Like Millennials, they have known only persistent uncertainty in a fluid world fluctuating a mile a minute. Lucky ones began careers working remotely as lockdowns shuttered them inside. As the first generation raised with social-media, the pandemic has exacerbated already stunted and much-needed in-person adult socialization. Worse, Zoomers (and some Millennials) are forced to compete for entry level jobs with Baby Boomers (BB) unable or unwilling to retire. Even if hired – as rookies – they are expendable, the first to be sacrificed as layoffs come.

It is fair to say that both generations (Z and M) are the loneliest, most disempowered, and isolated in a 100 years, especially relative to their parents at the same age (Generation X and Baby Boomers). Lack of socialization, income, and relationship pairing often inspires scorn and derision from older generations who criticize coddling from Helicopter Parents, ridiculous “safe spaces” and grade inflation guaranteeing everyone gets a trophy. Wokeness in part is a psychological opiate designed to ease the pain of insecure pubescents desperate for purpose and lacking a strong sense of self. Is it surprising that Z turn to Instagram and TikTok in search of online validation they cannot get from the real world?

Wokeness is a psychological opiate to ease the pain of two insecure generations desperate for purpose and lacking a strong sense of self.

Still, the older generation's field-of-vision is out-of-touch with how drastically the world has metamorphosed. Gone completely are the good old days when Harry Met Sally and Steve Martin films typified American households. Meeting your soul mate at the Sadie Hawkins shindig is about as likely today as a shark attack off the coast of Sydney, Australia. The world post-millennium has changed beyond recognition from last century.

No Heroes, Only Villains

The new regime for Z and M offers no heroes, only villains. Our Wonder Years came at a time of destruction not construction. Boomers and Gen X had their heroes, they had John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr. and General Douglas MacArthur. Love or despise these men, American society and indeed the world rallied around their legacy. On the contrary, Z and M have witnessed statues torn down, churches burned to the ground, carnage in the streets and Presidents stagger. Our wars are lost or abandoned, our governments are corrupt and lethargic, and our institutions: from universities (Harvard discriminates against Asians) to film studios (Harvey Weinstein) to famous athletes (Lance Armstrong), comedians, (Bill Cosby) and pop stars (Lindsay Lohan) have fallen from grace. In sum, turbulent times have left us cynical, disillusioned and emotionally scarred.

Our coming of age has come at a time of destruction not construction.

This has been particularly bruising for men in the city who so desperately need heroes to model and follow. Today’s male role models are largely defanged on-screen superhero personas ever weakened year-after-year by systematic sterilization. Men are increasingly betatized, meek, muzzled and portrayed as puerile imbeciles or spineless jelly fish on TV. The successful corporate men of our generation are neutered sheep living on cube farms. The few flaccid men at the top are awarded corner offices in sky scrapers where they tip toe the hallways on eggshells for fear of being disgraced by one misplaced offensive comment. Sign me up for that!

Let it Burn!

After decades of emasculation by re-education is it any wonder the brittle banking system and the ESG compliant bankers who run it is breaking like glass? Such crushing realities are about to reach the tone-deaf ears of Gen Z and naive Baby Boomers. Fortunately, two decades of disillusionment and despair conditions younger generations well for what is to come. For men, the traumas of unemployment, isolation from community, and the excitement and danger of new ideas is crystallizing into a new movement, a Neo Masculinity. Men in the city are waking up, we are coming together, and awareness is multiplying. We do not fear the end of the world, we see opportunity to build a new one, a better one.

For men, the traumas of unemployment, isolation from community, and the excitement and danger of new ideas is crystallizing into a new movement, a Neo Masculinity.

Men in the city have foreseen financial cataclysm, most of us intuitively sensed systemic corruption and experienced gross incompetence firsthand. We turned to new voices and systems and philosophies to find answers. In our quest for truth we discovered antifragile networks like Bitcoin, new movements in the Manosphere and tuned into viral online spaces weaponizing uncomfortable truths against spinmeisters in the legacy media. We are ready to take back control of our lives, to become the heroes of our own stories, once again. Let the system burn so “Truth, crushed to earth, shall rise again!” What happens next is a new beginning. Are you ready?

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