Wednesday, September 26

Future Tense

The Department of Homeland Security has asked a group of science fiction writers to try to predict what steps terrorists might take in the future to attack our country. Some scoff at this idea, but I think past history has proven that science fiction has been remarkably accurate at predicting the future.

Who can forget the classic Twilight Zone story "City on the Edge of Whatever" which predicted a future in which America's youth become inarticulate grunters with a vocabulary of 5-7 words and who begin each sentence with "'sup?" and can only speak to each other using the single mantra "dude".

Or Robert Heinlein's beloved novel "Stranger in a Strange Job" about a dumb-but-lovable governor who wakes up one morning to find he has mysteriously become The President of the United States.

And the uncannily prescient Star Trek episode, The Trouble With Bloggers which posits a future where thousands of relentlessly replicating life forms continually spew forth meaningless verbiage on an unsuspecting populous.

Scary stuff. I just hope we can heed the warnings before it's too late.


Joe said...

re: Heinlein, I think you mean the novel "Double Star."

"Stranger" is about a brilliant and lovable governor who wakes up to find himself the leader of a new religion.

Douglas said...

And "City on the Edge of..." was a Star Trek, not a Twilight Zone.