The New York Times' Thomas Friedman in his Wednesday column called for community-based economic development, a surprising shift for the "world is flat" apostle.
Turning from his longtime focus on interlocking global systems, Friedman gives a blueprint for self-contained local economies in which hometown governments, schools and universities would support local startups.
Known for his facile maxims about globalization and technological change in popular books such as his recent "Thanks for Being Late," Friedman doesn't say how his new regional business model fits in with the international system he usually extols. The workers would be educated in local schools, which apparently would provide lifetime job training as new skills are required. He doesn't say whether these companies would offer their products and services outside of the region.
Along the way, Friedman steps up his criticism of the Trump administration's economic policies, especially Trump's efforts to force American CEOs to keep jobs here. Friedman says these efforts are bound to backfire, with the corporations forced to step up use of robots to replace human workers.
Friedman calls for "moderate" Republicans and Democrats to band together against Trump's destructive plans. What moderate Republicans? The poor man is seeing unicorns.