I am a bit overdue for a post. Sorry. My only excuse is so unlike me as to be unbelievable. I am not so sure I have anything to say……..
.…doooooo………dooooooooo….doooooooo..dooooooooooo (image of Rod Serling looms in digital fashion in the background)
Part of the reason is that I am busy doing work and getting ready for spring. Part of it is that I have a small, temporary eye infection and it inhibits screen work. But the largest part of this writer’s malaise is a mild state of confusion re topics. Whales and Ravens? Politics? Building?
I am just reading Al Gore’s book, The Future, and it is, so far, kinda bleak. My kinda book, really, but this one is dark. Ugly dark. Seems we are all likely doomed. All to Hell doomed. Globalization, computerization, robotization and wealth inequality together with climate change and we are soon about to enter the perfect storm. This kinda thing somewhat dampens one’s plans for the future, ya know?
Well, it changes them, anyway. Gore is saying that the playing field is altering. And altering quickly and radically. What we have come to know as ‘normal life’ is going to change. He claims this is not a prediction but rather a report on what is already happening. It is changing. Most of us just don’t know it yet.
I won’t bore you with the details. Suffice it to say, he overwhelms you with information and so far, it is convincing. I have no idea what the answer is – I am only 1/3 of the way through the book.
But one factoid made me think…………seems we were stone carvers and spear-chuckers for some 200,000 years before we learned to plant a garden. Then we were ‘agriculturists’ for 8,000 years before we made some machines to ramp up production of consumer goods. The Industrial Revolution is only 200 years old and it is already being replaced by the Digital Age (read: computer, robot, no-need-for-humans era).
That part is not hard to follow. We are rapidly changing the way we cover the basics of life. He cites 3-D printers as being the forerunners of Star-Trek based ‘replicators’ and that we can all expect to have one relatively soon. Those of us who can afford to buy them, that is. He is easy to understand. We are changing so fast as to be caught confused and unaware. And many will be caught poor.
I get it. So far, so bleak.
But think of this very minor point: when we chucked spears, we did so outside. When we planted rice, maize and wheat, we did so outside. When we began making model T’s and big screen TV’s, we moved inside and went to the park or the beach on the weekends. A little bit of outside. Maybe. But when we work online, shop online and are soon to ‘produce’ entirely online, we are not outside in the fresh air at all. In fact, there are a number (in the hundreds of thousands) of people who seemingly never leave their screen ever. They have full-time lives online.
That can’t be good. Put aside for the moment the matter of money and all that crap. Forget about your RRSPs and 401Ks and financial plans for a minute. Waddabout your body? Doesn’t that need some basic attention?
I just read that one in three Americans die with some form of dementia. They do not necessarily die from some form of dementia but they have it when they go. Not good. And we all know of the increasing prevalence of cancer and heart disease. Maybe we should spend a bit more time outside doing some basic healthy, physical, natural things? It is definitely healthier and more fun even if it does not add to your aggregate wealth.
More importantly, perhaps, and according to Al Gore (so far in the book, anyway), being able to live simply and off the land may be a requirement for survival in the very near future. Seems the elites and the robots won’t have a great deal of need for the billions of people that used to provide cheap labour. Not anymore, anyway. They just won’t need us.
And, honestly? I am hoping to not need them!