Thursday, November 02, 2006

Imagining the future
(and the present)

One of my favorite authors (William Gibson, Neuromancer and Pattern Recognition) had an op-ed piece in the NYT about what we can learn from George Orwell about imagining the future – and describing the present, as well.

I don't know that this bears in any direct way on the subjects we usually address here, but I was intrigued and wanted to share this. Here is the link, and here's a great sample:

It is becoming unprecedentedly difficult for anyone, anyone at all, to keep a secret.

In the age of the leak and the blog, of evidence extraction and link discovery, truths will either out or be outed, later if not sooner. This is something I would bring to the attention of every diplomat, politician and corporate leader: the future, eventually, will find you out. The future, wielding unimaginable tools of transparency, will have its way with you. In the end, you will be seen to have done that which you did.


–Howard Weaver

3 comments:

  1. I find a lot of contemporary American political dialogue nothing if not proof that Orwell was dead-on accurate.

    WAR IS PEACE

    FREEDOM IS SLAVERY

    IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

    Unless we in the media stand our ground, you can add another maxim:

    OPINION IS TRUTH

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anna Haynes10:41 AM

    I read somewhere recently (as a blog comment, I think, but am having trouble finding it - url?) that the "kill the messenger" faction is now doing opposition research on journalists. The commenter implied their objective was to discredit reporters (e.g. "as a student, she was politically active in the Wrong Party, so can't be believed"); but now I'm wondering if - when they dig up 'interesting' non-political information - subtly threatening its exposure might not prove just as effective.

    It's a very different world.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous4:09 PM

    Even here?
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    ReplyDelete

 
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