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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

21 things we would not have believed in the already Orwellian 1984, a grum rant.

In the dozen years that passed since a pop culture reference from Allan Parsons or someone had prompted my 10 year old self to imbibe the truths of Orwell, I noted each Calendar flip, acknowledged its advancement toward Winston Smith’s year. When 1984 arrived, it seemed dystopian enough, continuous military conflict and cold war kept the poor from questioning power, cocaine was socially acceptable for white people, the rich were getting much richer from the introduction of Regan’s  trickle up economics and, as a poor young adult, I was unemployed, had holes in my shoes and lived on government cheese.
I could not have guessed, 30 years ago, that vegetables would become carcinogenic, the water from the faucet could be lit a fire, and that the ice caps could melt. Would we have predicted a tsunami that killed a hundred thousand? A hurricane could flood New York City and destroy the Jersey shore?
Who knew worker real income would be down %30 and CEO pay up %300, that social security would be known to have numbered days and the poor of the first world would start to look like poor of the 3rd world. The late night streets peppered with shopping cart pushers, scuttling like crabs in competition for returnable, Iron green gold mines of nickels. One could not have imagined the Wall Street crime wave that, in a single year, cost 6% of the USA population their jobs, 9 million people out of work and over one million homes stolen by the mortgagers. That not a single criminal would be sent to jail, and banks broken by their own crimes were bailed out with taxpayer money, too big to fail. How we would have laughed if you told us the Supreme Court would rule corporations were people and money equaled speech. Or that the people could be duped into thinking Unions were bad for them, that teachers were to blame for small school budgets, and one family could trade all the manufacturing jobs away so they could sell the cheapest Chinese sneakers, but  Americans would still buy their lies and their sneakers.
The environment did look to be in danger in those days, but the great lakes had been cleaned, superfunds tried to heal the earth, CFC’s and DDT outlawed to heal the hole in the ozone layer and bring the American eagle back from the brink of destruction. So how could we have guessed that every conservative would vow to close Richard Nixon’s invention, the EPA. That the EPA could receive a half million letters including one from 60 Congressmen asking to not approve a pesticide but they do it anyway AND the conservatives still think the EPA impedes progress. In 1984, would you have believed ubiquitous, innumerable, uncountable entire Genus like Bats and Frogs could be in danger today?  That huge swathes of coastline would qualify for the moniker of ‘Ocean Dead Zones’?  Bees and other pollinators may well fail, potentially causing  a %30 drop in the worlds food supply and, as a coup de grace, nearly one half of all species alive in 1984 are now extinct.
The first of my Children were born  as Halley’s specter last rode the heavens. That phenom of such a period that nearly everyone will only see it once, but you, my first born, like Mr. Clemens, were supposed to mark its twain.   Now, in 2014, I fear the comets 2060 return may greet no living human eye.
The one thing that really surprises me is; no one seems surprised or alarmed by all this.


Chuck Hinton 10/08/14

1 comment:

Coulston Miller said...

Awesome rant on todays and the planets perils . Its not too late . But we are getting there in a hurry . Its time for us all to unite and turn back the machine of greed war and inept , corrupt governance .