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Thread: What America Will My Children See?







Post#1 at 02-28-2007 01:30 AM by 1990 [at Savannah, GA joined Sep 2006 #posts 1,450]
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What America Will My Children See?

This has been a big year for me, and it's getting bigger. I took the SAT on January 27, and have my college applications in now for the fall. I am getting my driver's license this spring. This seems obnoxiously cliched, but at 16 years of age, my life seems full of questions, uncertainties, and possibilities.

One of the few things I do know is that my nation is on the brink of a 4T, and from the looks of it, a pretty tough one. At this early stage, we've already witnessed the worst terrorist attack in American history, a so-far disastrous military effort, the death of a great American city, and a growing sense of instability and hatred throughout the world. For God's sake, Israel waged an all-out war (that some were hailing as the start of WWIII) for one whole month. WTF is that?

So I ask you...after this 4T is over and the new world order is in place, what will we be living in? I hope one day to become a father (though preferrably not until my mid 30s), and raise a family in a better world. But what will I be raising children in? Will America be a sad remnant of what it was -- a shadow of what was once the greatest democracy on earth? Or will it be revived?

Take da poll.
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Post#2 at 02-28-2007 08:59 AM by catfishncod [at The People's Republic of Cambridge & Possum Town, MS joined Apr 2005 #posts 984]
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I choose to be an optimist.

The United States of America is one of the four nations on Earth too big, too populated, and too endowed with resources and geographic advantages to be conquered against its will. The other three are India, China, and Russia. Only when massively distracted by internal strife have foreign invaders ever taken even a foothold in these lands; as soon as the invaded nation regrouped, away the invaders went. There's no chance at all that we can remain unfree.

Quote Originally Posted by Abraham Lincoln, 27 January 1838
"At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Buonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years. At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide."
Mr. Saari aside, America cannot be broken up easily. The mass migrations of the twentieth century mean that the several States no longer represent divergent points of view; a second civil war in America would happen around every population center at once, not in neat state-by-state blocs. Even if we do have civil strife (the One forbid), therefore, America will continue as one state.

Any attempt at one-party state, of any stripe, would lead to civil war. The Boomers would see to it if it were the last thing they did.

Whether we have strife or not, I see increased federalism in arbitrary social choices in the next saeculum. How not? Most of this saeculum's civil strife is a direct result of excessive centralism in social affairs.

The last one is the most chilling: corpratocracy, or the new aristocracy. This is the ultimate goal of a number of BushCo's backers, and it would turn America into a country like Brazil with a 50% Gini coefficient, large numbers of desperate poor, and the rich in gated communities surrounded by guards 24/7/365. But I don't think that would work either, because they would have to put the one-party right-wing state in place to maintain it, at which point the civil war starts.

Too many Xers were raised with too much "Rage at the Machine" to allow any of that. They'll tear down the whole party establishment if necessary to get their multiple parties. Then the Millies move in and make it all network. Ta da! America 4.0, now with less suck.

Caveat: I do expect America to be less powerful next saeculum. New powers are rising and we've temporarily squandered our wealth and goodwill. But we will still be one of the Powers, just not a HyperPower.
'81, 30/70 X/Millie, trying to live in both Red and Blue America... "Catfish 'n Cod"







Post#3 at 02-28-2007 09:56 AM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
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I'm putting my faith in the kids.







Post#4 at 02-28-2007 10:00 AM by Virgil K. Saari [at '49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains joined Jun 2001 #posts 7,835]
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Smile Let them hate as long as they fear!

In twenty years we will be Reforming Eurasia still. Sometimes with our Friend(s) & Ally(ies) and sometimes alone. We will kill a great many rural Eurasians and their domestic livestock; we will crush many insert Eurasian ethnic group here skulls as we bring them to Progress. Africa and the Lower Americas will not escape our notice.

The Mbius of our politics will have its side labelled with new Brands of little importance. We will consume in a manner befitting a City on the Hill. The rich will live and the poor will die. We will become a Military-Informational Democracy as both Commercialism and Republicanism become more and more distant in the memory of those few who still read History (NTTIAWWT).

Weapons and the mobility (it's the way we live now) will have their day in the sunlit uplands of the Crisis 2012-2035. By 2027 the rosy dawn of all that blood spilt will bring about some reflection about how to begin to rebuild (that will be a New Beginning) after King Numbers and his arms are sated and put to rest.

The Crown of Creation will be cursed for a thousand years. HTH







Post#5 at 02-28-2007 11:01 AM by The Grey Badger [at Albuquerque, NM joined Sep 2001 #posts 8,876]
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The "Blade Runner Corporatocracy" may be the face of the next 3rd Turning, especially late in the 3T, but I don't see it happening any time before then. What sort of time frame are you looking at? I took the question to mean the next First Turning, more or less.
How to spot a shill, by John Michael Greer: "What you watch for is (a) a brand new commenter who (b) has nothing to say about the topic under discussion but (c) trots out a smoothly written opinion piece that (d) hits all the standard talking points currently being used by a specific political or corporate interest, while (e) avoiding any other points anyone else has made on that subject."

"If the shoe fits..." The Grey Badger.







Post#6 at 02-28-2007 11:17 AM by 1990 [at Savannah, GA joined Sep 2006 #posts 1,450]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Grey Badger View Post
The "Blade Runner Corporatocracy" may be the face of the next 3rd Turning, especially late in the 3T, but I don't see it happening any time before then. What sort of time frame are you looking at? I took the question to mean the next First Turning, more or less.
Yes. It occurred to me that in 2027 (twenty years from now) most Millies will be in their 30s or 40s, the Xers will run politics, and the 1T will probably be in its early stages.

So yes, this is a "what will be left when the dust settles?" question.
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Post#7 at 02-28-2007 02:09 PM by herbal tee [at joined Dec 2005 #posts 7,116]
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Put me down as a short term pessimist-long term optimist. There's a good chance that we will look back at the middle of the "double zero" decade as the time of the cascade. There does seem to be a growing consensus in public opinion polls about what needs to be done long term. Getting there will, as C and C noted above take each adult generation playing their roles well.
The remaining silents can be a scorce of infomation as to how people survived the last 4t during their youth. On a personal level, it is wise for us in the younger generations to learn all we can from any post-elder silents that we know and trust about how the adults that they knew got through the depression era.
Bommers, as have been noted elsewhere, come in at least two flavors-red and blue. Without getting into the political side, so far only one color of the boomers has gotten truely close to real power. That may change in the next couple of years. If past 4t's show anything, they show that elder idealists end up in a very different place from where they started the turning.
It's interesting to see the recent empathsis by parental X'ers to increase the protection of their young. This is likely an early sign of the reactives starting with the home and family and then increasing their stamp upon the public society. I tend to agree with the other posters who feel that the middle aged X'er sill not allow a corporate dictatorship. They saw way too much bull growing up to tolerate the same kind of crud threatening thier children as endangered them when young.
Finally, everytime I see my young millie nephews and their friends as a group, it gives me a great deal of hope. Whatever the nature of things to come, I believe that they will step up in the tradition of young civics.
In the book The 4T, S and H liken the early part of a 4t to the start of winter. It is an apt compairison. Those are the darkest days of the year. As winter progresses, the cold will get worse but the sun will slowly return. So it is with the saeculium. We're looking at wars and rumors of wars, possible stock market crashes and so on, but peope have been slowly getting a grip on the true nature of our outer world problems. There won't be a going back to the pretense of the 3t, too many people have seen the illusions as illusions. The near future wont be easy, but at least it will be reality based.







Post#8 at 02-28-2007 02:44 PM by The Grey Badger [at Albuquerque, NM joined Sep 2001 #posts 8,876]
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Herbal Tee said "In the book The 4T, S and H liken the early part of a 4t to the start of winter. It is an apt compairison. Those are the darkest days of the year. As winter progresses, the cold will get worse but the sun will slowly return. So it is with the saeculium. "

Yes. We're past Samhain (9/11) and past Thanksgiving (Katrina?) but have we reached Yuletide yet? That's my only question.

(The regeneracy? Groundhog Day - when it's already been as cold as it's going to get. There may be some late snowstorms - Albuquerque is notorious for the Easter Bunny bringing us storms - but the corner has been turned. Hmmm... saecular Easter Snowstorms include the War of 1812.)
How to spot a shill, by John Michael Greer: "What you watch for is (a) a brand new commenter who (b) has nothing to say about the topic under discussion but (c) trots out a smoothly written opinion piece that (d) hits all the standard talking points currently being used by a specific political or corporate interest, while (e) avoiding any other points anyone else has made on that subject."

"If the shoe fits..." The Grey Badger.







Post#9 at 02-28-2007 05:40 PM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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You didn't offer a "no change" option.







Post#10 at 02-28-2007 05:47 PM by 1990 [at Savannah, GA joined Sep 2006 #posts 1,450]
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Quote Originally Posted by Mikebert View Post
You didn't offer a "no change" option.
Wouldn't that be unheard of for a 4T? Even the Civil War, a 5-year crisis, had a huge transformative effect on society and politics.
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Post#11 at 02-28-2007 06:16 PM by Arkham '80 [at joined Oct 2003 #posts 1,402]
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Best Case Scenario

Precipitous economic decline couples with increasingly draconian police measures to spark a general insurrection against the federal government. The insurgency quickly seizes the countryside (which loyalist forces must thereafter traverse in armored convoys) and links up with urban guerilla cells (radicalized street gangs, mostly) in the major cities. Attrocities on both sides fail to reach the international media, which is preoccupied with the nuclear devastation of the Indian subcontinent and the ongoing ethnic and religious quagmires in Europe and the Middle East. (No one has a clue what is going on in China, although a continuous outflow of skeletal refugees points to severe famine, at the very least.) Eventually, a stalemate is reached on the North American continent, which is carved into several dozen city-states. Individually weak, the new states form shifting regional alliances to execute large-scale projects, but otherwise eschew entanglements with the larger world.

The 1T is characterized by an insular, "eco-conservative" secular ethos and a revolution in the biosciences that solves many of the critical problems (energy and material shortages, environmentally-destructive agricultural methods, prohibitive health care costs, etc.) of the preceding Crisis. There is an increasingly successful effort by corporate entities to overcome the intense localism of the era and restore to the business elites some of the privileges surrendered during the 4T. This results in a popular backlash, couched in spiritual terms, during the 2T, which achieves a kind of "quantum Zen" synthesis that proclaims the need for both local rootedness and global vision. This relational spirituality creates intense confusion during the 3T as communities attempt to negotiate a balance between the two polarities and largely stumble on vestigial beliefs (universalism, materialism, etc.) from the fading industrial age. The next 4T is a knock-down fight between remnant industrial hierarchies (embodied in a shrinking number of transnational corporations) and diffuse tribal heterarchies (the ultimate cultural solution to the local-global dichotomy), which results in the extinction of the former.
You cannot step twice into the same river, for fresh waters are ever flowing in upon you. -- Heraclitus

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -- Jiddu Krishnamurti

Do I contradict myself? Very well, then, I contradict myself. I am large; I contain multitudes." -- Walt Whitman

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Post#12 at 03-01-2007 12:31 AM by herbal tee [at joined Dec 2005 #posts 7,116]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Grey Badger View Post
Herbal Tee said "In the book The 4T, S and H liken the early part of a 4t to the start of winter. It is an apt compairison. Those are the darkest days of the year. As winter progresses, the cold will get worse but the sun will slowly return. So it is with the saeculium. "

Yes. We're past Samhain (9/11) and past Thanksgiving (Katrina?) but have we reached Yuletide yet? That's my only question.
As one who doesn't like cold and dark days, I'm always relieved when new years gets here. Being as we are very near the 3t/4t cusp, I would have to say 'no, we're somewhere in this saeculium's December.'







Post#13 at 03-01-2007 01:23 PM by 1990 [at Savannah, GA joined Sep 2006 #posts 1,450]
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Quote Originally Posted by herbal tee View Post
As one who doesn't like cold and dark days, I'm always relieved when new years gets here. Being as we are very near the 3t/4t cusp, I would have to say 'no, we're somewhere in this saeculium's December.'
Then January (early 2010s) is going to be one hell of a ride.

By the way, friends, don't forget that Daylight Saving Time is coming earlier from now on. This year it's March 11, instead of the first Sunday in April. DST is also ending later (November 4? I think).
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Post#14 at 03-01-2007 01:54 PM by herbal tee [at joined Dec 2005 #posts 7,116]
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Dreaming of a high 2025

Quote Originally Posted by 1990 View Post
Then January (early 2010s) is going to be one hell of a ride.
Then we're about where we should be cyclewise. Most places in the northern hemisphere average their coldest temperatures in January. At least the "days" should be slowly getting longer. A clearly identifable grey champion emerging by then could be taken as a sign of the eventual return of saecular spring.







Post#15 at 03-01-2007 03:29 PM by [at joined #posts ]
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Quote Originally Posted by Arkham '80 View Post
Best Case Scenario
Eventually, a stalemate is reached on the North American continent, which is carved into several dozen city-states. Individually weak, the new states form shifting regional alliances to execute large-scale projects, but otherwise eschew entanglements with the larger world.
I see Homeowner's Associations as the new neighborhood governments. The Neighborhood Watch will be armed with automatic weapons, and drive APCs, to keep off the marauding bands.







Post#16 at 03-02-2007 01:31 PM by The Pervert [at A D&D Character sheet joined Jan 2002 #posts 1,169]
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Cool

Quote Originally Posted by The Grey Badger View Post
Herbal Tee said "In the book The 4T, S and H liken the early part of a 4t to the start of winter. It is an apt compairison. Those are the darkest days of the year. As winter progresses, the cold will get worse but the sun will slowly return. So it is with the saeculium. "

Yes. We're past Samhain (9/11) and past Thanksgiving (Katrina?) but have we reached Yuletide yet? That's my only question.

(The regeneracy? Groundhog Day - when it's already been as cold as it's going to get. There may be some late snowstorms - Albuquerque is notorious for the Easter Bunny bringing us storms - but the corner has been turned. Hmmm... saecular Easter Snowstorms include the War of 1812.)
There are problems with your analogy. First, most of the readers here don't follow the traditional Celtic/Wiccan/neopagan markers for the beginning and end of winter. Many of them probably are completely unfamiliar with Winter beginning October 31 or November 1 (Samhain/Halloween) and ending May 1 (Beltane/May Day). Therefore, the analogy fails to properly communicate with your audience (although I agree with you that only now are we falling down the cascade and regeneracy is still ahead). Second, the length of the winter you follow does not translate well to the S&H scheme, with four more or less equal seasons. The Celtic idea of winter is much too long to translate to four equal turnings (and, in fact, secular crises tend to be on the short side relative to other seasons, at least during the past 200 years).

That said, if the metaphor helps you understand, more power to it and to you. Just don't expect everyone else to follow you.
Your local general nuisance
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Post#17 at 03-02-2007 01:34 PM by The Pervert [at A D&D Character sheet joined Jan 2002 #posts 1,169]
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Quote Originally Posted by 1990 View Post
Wouldn't that be unheard of for a 4T? Even the Civil War, a 5-year crisis, had a huge transformative effect on society and politics.
It did, but I suggest you include Reconstruction in the crisis. Then the the Civil War Crisis lasts anywhere from 8 to 16 years, a more normal length for a 4T.
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Post#18 at 03-02-2007 04:52 PM by Arkham '80 [at joined Oct 2003 #posts 1,402]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Pervert View Post
It did, but I suggest you include Reconstruction in the crisis. Then the the Civil War Crisis lasts anywhere from 8 to 16 years, a more normal length for a 4T.
I would go one step further and say that the Civil War Crisis started with Bleeding Kansas and lasted through to the end of Reconstruction. I mean, when armed posses start shooting at each other over the matter of slavery, that signals the onset of a crisis to me. It also has the benefit of removing the "anomaly" from the Civil War saeculum, which has never jibed with the rest of the theory, IMO.
You cannot step twice into the same river, for fresh waters are ever flowing in upon you. -- Heraclitus

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -- Jiddu Krishnamurti

Do I contradict myself? Very well, then, I contradict myself. I am large; I contain multitudes." -- Walt Whitman

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Post#19 at 03-02-2007 05:41 PM by Neisha '67 [at joined Jul 2001 #posts 2,227]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Pervert View Post
There are problems with your analogy. First, most of the readers here don't follow the traditional Celtic/Wiccan/neopagan markers for the beginning and end of winter. Many of them probably are completely unfamiliar with Winter beginning October 31 or November 1 (Samhain/Halloween) and ending May 1 (Beltane/May Day). Therefore, the analogy fails to properly communicate with your audience (although I agree with you that only now are we falling down the cascade and regeneracy is still ahead). Second, the length of the winter you follow does not translate well to the S&H scheme, with four more or less equal seasons. The Celtic idea of winter is much too long to translate to four equal turnings (and, in fact, secular crises tend to be on the short side relative to other seasons, at least during the past 200 years).

That said, if the metaphor helps you understand, more power to it and to you. Just don't expect everyone else to follow you.
Oh, I don't know, Vince, I think most of us here read enough Sci-Fi/Fantasy type stuff to know what Pat meant. And I took it to mean that climax would come around Feb 2/Brigid, rather than hanging around until Beltane, which would be more like the peak of the 1T. But, that could be my own spin, rather than careful reading -- I'm eating lunch right now(mussamun curry tofu -- yum).

I'm currently reading the first "Dresden Files" book, so I'm all about wizard detectives at the moment, and at least groked the essence of Pat's post.
Last edited by Neisha '67; 03-02-2007 at 05:43 PM.







Post#20 at 03-02-2007 05:51 PM by Neisha '67 [at joined Jul 2001 #posts 2,227]
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Quote Originally Posted by Child of Socrates View Post
I'm putting my faith in the kids.
Yeah, but the kids are going to need us Xers to start getting into gear and adding realism and practicality to all public debates. The kids will be great, as long as Xers engage and cut through some of the Boomer posturing. If Xers don't ever engage, things could get bad in an out-of-control Mad Max sort of way. I'm pulling for "reformed multi-party democracy."







Post#21 at 03-02-2007 07:03 PM by Arkham '80 [at joined Oct 2003 #posts 1,402]
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I find it telling how conventional the majority of responses have been. This 4T has the potential to be the most transformative since the Protestant Reformation, yet the future posited here seems to be no more radical than "more of the same, but with European-style social democracy and coalition politics." Pathetic. This is why the neoconservative agenda will succeed, despite its unpopularity: because no one can conceive of a truly compelling alternative. We will all die as corporate serfs for lack of imagination.
You cannot step twice into the same river, for fresh waters are ever flowing in upon you. -- Heraclitus

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -- Jiddu Krishnamurti

Do I contradict myself? Very well, then, I contradict myself. I am large; I contain multitudes." -- Walt Whitman

Arkham's Asylum







Post#22 at 03-03-2007 09:21 AM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
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Quote Originally Posted by Arkham '80 View Post
... We will all die as corporate serfs for lack of imagination.
I'm stealing this quote ... without apology or by-your-leave.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#23 at 03-03-2007 10:34 AM by Virgil K. Saari [at '49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains joined Jun 2001 #posts 7,835]
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Thumbs down We're having a Crisis,

... and all the T4Ters got was another crummy vibrant, reformed multi-party democracy Weimar Republic.

I don't think I'll be joining on your choruses of Tomorrow Belongs to Me!
I plunked down for an even more hubristic Commercial Republic but many want a democracy, and a vibrant, reformed, multiparty installation of King Numbers at that. Blade Runner, Inc. would at least have some Commercialism if not any Republicanism. But, I guess Life is going to be a Cabaret!







Post#24 at 03-03-2007 10:54 AM by The Wonkette [at Arlington, VA 1956 joined Jul 2002 #posts 9,209]
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Quote Originally Posted by Arkham '80 View Post
I find it telling how conventional the majority of responses have been. This 4T has the potential to be the most transformative since the Protestant Reformation, yet the future posited here seems to be no more radical than "more of the same, but with European-style social democracy and coalition politics." Pathetic. This is why the neoconservative agenda will succeed, despite its unpopularity: because no one can conceive of a truly compelling alternative. We will all die as corporate serfs for lack of imagination.
Well, the choices were a bit limited. You had all these horrible results and then two positive ones, one which is widely unrealistic. If you wanted to be optimistic but not over the top, you only had one choice.
Last edited by The Wonkette; 03-03-2007 at 10:58 AM.
I want people to know that peace is possible even in this stupid day and age. Prem Rawat, June 8, 2008







Post#25 at 03-03-2007 12:42 PM by Roadbldr '59 [at Vancouver, Washington joined Jul 2001 #posts 8,275]
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Quote Originally Posted by Arkham '80 View Post
I find it telling how conventional the majority of responses have been. This 4T has the potential to be the most transformative since the Protestant Reformation, yet the future posited here seems to be no more radical than "more of the same, but with European-style social democracy and coalition politics." Pathetic. This is why the neoconservative agenda will succeed, despite its unpopularity: because no one can conceive of a truly compelling alternative. We will all die as corporate serfs for lack of imagination.
If it, in fact, falls that way... that we become a corporate version of Orwell's 1984... what would you bet the core issue of the New Consciousness Revolution will be circa 2050???
"Better hurry. There's a storm coming. His storm!!!" :-O -Abigail Freemantle, "The Stand" by Stephen King
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