Here is a taste of the latest of my epigrams at Global Brief just published.
A third, dark possibility for the future state emerges with the invention of computers and digital storage. We see evidence in advanced states of legislative paralysis, the frenzied churning of virtual money to create wealth for fewer and fewer people, a steady accumulation of computer surveillance coupled with a decrease in privacy and social mobility, and an increase in state-sponsored corruption (as tax, subsidy and campaign finance laws become increasingly complex and phantasmal), coupled with a dwindling tax base.
The middle class – the traditional core of the modern state – is under assault, not from economic austerity or investment bubbles, but as a legitimate mode of existence, a way of being, because it (like that other Enlightenment concept, the self) may not be useful to the coming state (think: pilotless drones). The result is cynicism and despair, recession suicides in Europe, desperate acts of internal terrorism, and plummeting birthrates in mature world economies – a trend toward, not stateless people, but people-less states – a ghostly, penumbral future that we might all wish to avoid.
You hit the mark, sir, though I prefer epigrams to be witty without scaring me witless.
“witty…witless” — nice. 🙂
The editor at GB did remark that it was a bit “dark.” I shall try to be more optimistic next time. But I couldn’t resist the pilotless drones parallel.
Yep, our political candidates our pilotless drones, being steered by mega-billionaires and conglomerates that spur special interest greed — greed that is destroying the remaining good in our civilization. The decay has gained momentum, so much so that we are no longer on a slippery slope – we’re free fallin’- and not the kind Tom Petty sings about.