We are living in Roman times my friends, and such times by their very definition must end.
Hello, dear readers, I’m J.J. Freedman and I'm the host of the new column: The Collapse.
I think a lot of people are like me, we're kind of wondering. We know society is going to hell on a greased pole in a handbasket, it seems pretty clear that civilization as we know it is about to go careening off a cliff and fall smack dab onto an iceberg that will rip a gaping hole in the hull of the steamship of progress. But still, we have lots of questions.
What exactly is this nightmare world we're headed toward actually gonna look like?
I mean are we talking Mad Max, civilization as we know it gone and it's just a total flipping free-for-all? Or is it more like Waterworld? What with global warming and all I could see that – just water, man, as far as the eye can see. And the beach is like on top of the tallest mountain ... that would be heavy.
I mean it'd be a hard life don’t get me wrong, but at least it would mean something, you know? Does the way things are today mean anything to you? Do you think the center can hold? Is there any way to stop humanity from so over-consuming as to do catastrophic damage to the ecosystems on which we depend for survival? I think we can all agree on the answers here.
Anyway Mad Max seemed a bit over the top; I wonder if we're not headed more toward a Postman-type thing – all the technology is gone and while some institutions hold together on a small scale, mostly it's like all warlords and shit. In that case I guess I just need to know how to farm, grow potatoes and raise pigs and chickens, maybe a fish pond, live lean and occasionally starve – and of course be able protect my family from roving gangs of bandits led by guys like Christopher Walken. That's not gonna be easy, but I'm a good guy and I think it's likely I'll survive and even marry a fantastic woman although I may lose one minor character close to me, possibly even one of my own kids. That would suck satan's crack, but hey I'll survive to the movie's end, at least.
My major concern is, is there going to be more than one attractive woman per village, or is this gonna be like a total sausage fest?
Speaking of technology, what about the robots? Will robots be all but alive, able to inter-replicate, and feel? Will we be confronted with the moral dilemma of their near humanity, like in AI, Robot? Or is it safe to say they'll always be kind of clunky and as easily unplugged as you would a toaster?
And what caused it? Is it like all post-apocalyptic, everything's melted and everyone's filthy and diseased? I mean did a nuclear hoe-down go down? Or does it look and feel just like our world, except that there's something strangely weird about it? Could it happen without the big catalyst, could things just gradually get worse and worse until we wake up one day and the nightmare is reality? Are we on a slippery slope to Idiocracy? That wouldn't be so bad, it looked like they still got some decent food and plenty of sex and drugs, hell just maybe I could rise up and be president of the stooges. I'm as good as Luke Wilson.
These are some of the answers that some of the people like me are asking questions about. I hope that in the coming months we can explore these questions and maybe shed some light on our collective vision of the future.