A new year

What if we lived in a world where the powers-that-be set out to eradicate children who were less than excellent students, women who were less than very sexy, men who were not both muscular and smart?

Such a policy would be far more radical than mere eugenics, (cf. Nazism and Joseph Mengele), yet enterprises in this vein are not altogether unheard of. After all, the whites did go after the reds, the blacks, the browns and, most recently, the Jews; though of course the Jews were white too, which only goes to show that race really is irrelevant.

The good news is that unless some crackpot presses one of those famous buttons, the planet will survive and with it the human species, for good or for worse.

As the climate becomes ever more ornery and unpredictable, investors will be happily occupied in satisfying new consumer needs. There will be a market for protection against erratic climate tantrums: hurricane-proof and tsunami-resistant systems, self-replenishing underground lakes, desalination plants. We already have a booming industry of carbon sequestration and ocean plastic capture projects. Eventually, of course, clean energy will be the rule, not the exception, resulting in new scrambles for market positions.

The problem is that very few of us can afford having our own underground artificial lakes. Now if you are lucky enough to live in a country that requires even its wealthy  inhabitants to pay taxes, your government may be able to afford systems to protect you against extreme climatic events, at least for a few years. Provided of course that all the taxes paid are not diverted to “defence”. Parenthetically, I wish to point out that my quotation marks refer to the fact that in some countries, the word “defence” means “attack”.

The ultimate climate débâcle will not kill us all, rest assured. The one percent who can afford palaces with artificial self-replenishing lakes under tsunami-resistant, hurricane-proof, self-cleaning glass bells will need underpaid workers to man their factories, clerks to send their invoices, male and female hookers to satisfy their sexual needs, interpreters to help them communicate with competitors on other tectonic plates, nurses to tend their spastic parents and psychopathic offspring. There is hope for us all: many will find a safe haven from the vindictive climate under the wings of the one percent, also in future.

Many will not. Among those who will not, we will see blacks, browns and — oh yes — whites. Many of them. There will be devoted fathers, good musicians, kind little girls, dreamers, surfers, biologists, house painters, and geniuses. Many of these people will be stacked away in rat-infested refugee camps along the borders, where they may or may not be fed. Others will try to survive as fugitives, stealing and fighting each other over water, blankets and toilet paper.

Thanks to those of us who are elected to serve the one percent ( I am glad that I don’t have much longer to live) they will be spared from having to inbreed and give birth to three-headed babies. Pity. I would have loved to learn the eugenic outcome of a hundred years’ inbreeding. Would mating emperors create smarter babies than the rest of us do now?

Finally, bearing in mind that we are facing a new year with a few quite sinister clouds on the horizon, I would like to add that sometimes things turn out very much better than we feared. Nevertheless, we should all — young and old and in-between — be a little alert, to say the least. Is there anything we can do to make things better, for instance?

And — sorry to say this — but please take a look at my post “Encryption“, just to be on the safe side.