Since its inception in 2012, The American Millennium Society (AMS) has been concerned about the underlying shifts in the U.S. economy as we move through the 4th industrial revolution. Our institutions were not adequate for the task of supporting American global competitiveness and the resultant inequities are an existential threat to the middle class as well as to democracy as we know it. In April of 2016, this research was delivered in a speech at a Harvard global leadership conference that described in stark terms the fact that the level of concentration of capital was comparable to early 20th-century levels. To quote Ms. DiFrancesco, founder of AMS, “We were not at a stable point then and we are not at a stable point now.”
Fortunately, the Society has the tools and methods to illuminate the issues and the advanced management science that can help “crack the code” on the next generation of the economy that can redefine the great American Promise in 21st-century terms (https://www.americanmillenniumsociety.org/ams-innovations). This new basis for discussion enables polarized groups to find common ground using fundamentally American principles – our National DNA – and to develop institutions that are accountable to the American people for producing results for the American people. In our system of government, the American people are not subjects or customers; they are the shareholders of the Nation. They have the right to expect a government to understand the value of their interests that require a common defense, their welfare that government can genuinely promote, and how to secure the blessings of liberty for “themselves and their posterity” so that investments the government makes on their behalf show a return. After nearly a quarter millennium, it is time for a sober review of where we are as a nation and what it will take to bridge our society to a sustainable, prosperous next quarter millennium. For almost a decade, AMS has been developing strategic frames and analytic techniques to structure government around Constitutional principles and shape the dialog on the solutions to our most vexing problems in value-to-investment (ROI) terms. This is our Agenda for America MQ2.
“If you don’t know what it is worth, how do you know what you are willing to spend?”
A U.S. National Human Capital Strategy. This proposal is the first step in establishing one of the cornerstones of the Agenda, a National Human Capital Strategy (NHCS). The country is in the midst of historic challenges and is facing both a short-term crisis and a long term-structural shift. The issues from the pandemic response, unemployment relief, immigration reform, healthcare and public health system, the digital divide, systemic poverty, and erosion of democracy are big issues that are all connected to the lack of a comprehensive, integrated, and intentional NHCS. A strategy could provide a framework for developing policy, directing public investment, and leveraging private investment in a way that would maximize the value of the American people to the American people.
We tested these concepts in a recent set of Convenings in collaboration with the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AACU) that included college presidents, senior corporate executives, non-profit organizations, and community leaders. The group concluded that not only was a comprehensive NHCS long overdue, but it would also be invaluable for helping to better vector investments – for both the private sector as well as for public policy and to accelerate our post-pandemic recovery.
The Convenings discovered some unintended consequences of current Biden Administration proposals and improved those ideas with a framework for decision-making that could unify Democrats and Republicans around outcomes that advance our global competitiveness as well as tax schemas that could get broad corporate support. The group agreed that we need a non-partisan National Commission that can combine sophisticated management science and decision support to formulate the “right” answers and act as a “sideways force” to help those inside government to transform government to create a sustainable foundation for a vibrant 21st-century economy.