History in many ways is one long obituary. When I think about how history is written and what is generally made memorable, it is most often a retelling of the death and destruction that was wrought. Looking backwards we see that the 2000s were dominated by the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. In the 80’s and 90’s it was AIDS and Crack Cocaine deaths. In the 70’s we have the carryover from the Vietnam war that started in the 60’s, which were dominated by death of a President, a Civil Rights Leader (King), another Civil Rights Leader (Malcolm X) and in the 50’s we had the Korean Conflict, the 40’s were a World War, the 30’s were disease and malnutrition thanks to a Great Depression and the late teen’s had the global pandemic of the Spanish Flu.

The epidemic we face today is abundance, boredom and redundancy. It is just as critical that we deal with these issues or else they will lead to larger problems like disease, war and rebellion.

I believe that abundance is a problem because as a country we have more food and material wealth than we know what to do with. It’s been estimated that we throw away 40% of the food produced in this country annually. I like to say that “this is America, we have more of everything” and we do. More diabetes, more heart attacks, more obesity and strokes – all related to our abundance of food and indulgence.

We have more boredom today than ever because we have less to do. We don’t have to shop and prepare our food, it doesn’t take all day to make dinner, it takes a trip to the Whole Foods and quick run through their buffet line and you’ve got dinner for as many as you want. Alternatively, if you are skilled at the reheating process, you can hit up the deli counter of Vons, Bristol Farms or Gelson’s and have a “home cooked” meal in 20 minutes, just don’t forget to swing through the produce section and grab a couple of bags of salad and you’re ready to play host.

The plethora of entertainment options continues to grow each day, and yet we find less and less to enjoy. We have become immune to amazement, dulled to thoughtful and insightful commentary, and bored with what was once the height of creativity. The onslaught of media and the firehose of social updates on what people had for lunch and the latest tweets from the current President keep us so wound up and spinning all the time we have no ability sit back and enjoy anything, which thus robs of our interest in what is really going on. We are forced to constantly react, but never respond.

America is facing a crisis unlike any we, or the world, has ever faced before. Redundancy, the concept of an employee that is no longer needed, is soon to be the word of the decade. Automation is coming to every field. From robot surgeons to artificial intelligence that does legal research and is starting to draft briefs – there is no industry that has not been, nor will not be, radically changed by robots.

All of this is leading us to a worsening of the current drug epidemic that is running rampant through our country. We see it here with our population of the permanently unemployed – they turn to drink and drug to occupy their days. Sadly, some do not make it out alive.

I predict that the problems will only get worse unless we find a way to either increase individual occupations and encourage the suffering to find new activities to bring purpose and meaning to their lives. The high level of redundant American employees is unsustainable. We have to put them to work somehow. American abundance is a wonderful thing, but the price of it is growing each day. As we need fewer and fewer people to produce more and more, we have to find a way to increase the consumers, and give them a reason to get up in the morning and buy.

We cannot afford to simply have large numbers of unemployed people who do nothing but take drugs, make babies and waste their lives doing nothing of value or creativity. That’s what leads to large prison populations with under involved parents who create children that are destined to repeat the mistakes of their parents.

David Pisarra is a Los Angeles Divorce and Child Custody Lawyer specializing in Father’s and Men’s Rights with the Santa Monica firm of Pisarra & Grist. He welcomes your questions and comments. He can be reached at dpisarra@pisarra.com or 310/664-9969.You can follow him on Twitter @davidpisarra