Not a long post today, more a question I cannot resolve. People are saying we are living in a time akin to George Orwell’s imagined totalitarian nightmare, 1984. There are a lot of compelling arguments to that.
I won’t bother listing them all out. Either you’ve read 1984 (or even seen a film adaptation) or you haven’t. Most likely, even if you haven’t, you understand the reference and why people might feel that way.
The more horrifying possibility that I entertain, and that I have for a number of years, is that instead we’re living in a world akin to Terry Gilliam’s brilliant Brazil.
Sure, it’s got the potential to be a malevolent totalitarian nightmare, but…it’s both better and worse because the bureaucratic machines are just so incompetent. Every regulation breaks a rule, and every rule is a regulation. People are monitored constantly, but it’s not by some well-organized central system.
It’s run as, and by, a confederacy of incompetence. If the wrong (right?) person were to coordinate things, it would be a horrifying nightmare.
As it is, it’s still a horrifying nightmare.
We’re not being pursued through a labyrinth by a vengeful minotaur. We’re being stalked in a ramshackle field by an ill-tempered bull.
I don’t know if that should make anyone feel better, or worse.
Bonus points if you throw THX-1138 into the mix and see if that works even better.