I know these are "great times" - the TV, media, internet, peanut gallery at "Cloud City Coffee", they tell me so. Sure, there's the "fake news" that talks about wars, bloodshed, murders, abuse of the innocent and the weak, but that's all made up - the truth is this: these are great times, so if YOU are not FEELING GREAT about technology, food, housing, the weather? -> then there must be something wrong with you.
There's something wrong with me - I'm 48 years old, unemployed (by choice), looking for a new job in a new city, and not really "feeling it" with respect to career and shit. The forties are a funny time for people - these days ... a lot of the people I know between the age of 40 and 50 (plus or minus) have these bizarre, almost religious, views of the coming future (probably due to a naive meme'ing of Ray Kurzweil's thinkery). They KNOW that everyone will have good food, and live to be 200 years old, once we take care of those pesky terrorists and the people who live in the Midwest or fly-over states. This belief is most predominant in places like Seattle, where I'm living now. This commonly held truism that, via technology and neoliberal/neocon policies, the world is becoming so much nicer, for everyone - it's nauseating and permeates both the "liberal" and "conservative" zones of Seattle (sarcastic quotes intended).
We are all just biding time until this magical future unfolds - everyone will have free food, free healthcare, work 10 hours a week like in that creepy short story from the "Illustrated Man" by Ray Bradbury (the one where the parents get eaten by virtual reality lions and shit).
I don't have faith in any of it. This is hard.
The faithless, in America, like myself, the ones that no longer believe we live in the "land of the free, home of the brave" ... the faithless, the lost, like me, believe we live in a prison - an open air prison, with varying privileges for the inmates, and there is almost no escape (except suicide).
The faithless, we are everywhere ... some of us are homeless, some of us do regular jobs, some of us even work for the government - but what we have in common is a uniform belief and acceptance that this horrifically deformed civilization, in America, is going to choke on its own vomit ... eventually. We can slowly dwindle, accepting our fractional degradation, or we can try to find an escape hatch - the easiest being drug abuse.
We don't believe in the Millennialism of Kurzweil or the other prophets of FUTURE BLISS. We don't buy into the "robot apocalypse" crap ... we don't believe in free-energy, free-lunches, or free-love ... we believe that there is NOTHING you can do to stop ANY of this.
No ... I'm not biding time until the "Singularity" and all my problems are solved.
I think this shit-show of a civilization passed its zenith decades ago - I was born into the decline, a decline papered over (literally) by debt, but even debt, like nitrous for a V8, eventually stops working.
If I'm biding time? - it is a death-watch, over the decaying body of "America" (whatever the hell that is) ... nothing more, nothing less.
The faithless know it's all getting worse, our lives more degraded and controlled, more wars in our names, more government violence, more poverty and unemployment, and, eventually, labor camps (for the "faithless" at first).
But some "grand future" ahead? - no, that's Disney bullshit.
I have no faith in the lies, the convenient deceptions ...