Welcome to the World of Tomorrow!

Will Life Be Worth Living in the Year 2000? asks this article from 1961, making predictions about the nightmarish Jetsons-style utopia that awaited all of us unborns in the new millenium.  

The broad strokes of how computers provide instantaneous convenience are all there, so 5 points for that.  But mostly this guy is on too many drugs or, more likely, the wrong ones and not enough of them. We have another frustratingly unrealized prediction of flying cars (-1 point). Also a lot of monorails for some reason (-1 point), which seems unnecessary because he also predicts jetpacks– excuse me, “rocket belts” — which I’ll give +1 for wishful thinking. 

Naturally all our food comes in astronaut-ready forms like pills and powders (-2 points), and since 5% of us will be living in space by 2020 (+1 point), it’s really quite practical.  The predictions are also totally blind to the social and sexual revolution about to sweep the nation at the time of publication– the family dynamics described in this haphazard prophecy are so Ozzie & Harriet  it’s comical.  

The best part are the predictions regarding child-rearing and education, since us youngsters will be given “pills to learn faster,” which is semi-accurate and entirely ironic in the ADD era.  60s medical prognosticators apparently also expected that somewhere in the 70s, 80s, and 90s we would have cured the common cold, tooth decay, cancer, and all forms of mental illness.

The author notes “There’s a lot more besides to make H.G. Wells and George Orwell sound like they’re getting left behind,” which considering the deeply Orwellian nature of government in the 21st century, is worth at least -3 points and hearty Har-Har-Har.  So we’re at a wash of 0 points, which I will revisit as soon as my fucking rocket belt hits the market, dammit.


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