Envisioning real dystopias

One of these is bound to come true and make me look prophetic. Or at least it’ll get made into a movie with Ethan Hawke or something.

  • Large- and medium-seized companies undergo a management revolution when they discover that reality-television-style competitions among employees have a dramatic (although short-term) effect on productivity. Sex-discrimination laws are changed to allow the ratings-grabbing men versus women team divisions to flourish, and fired employees are occasionally brought back to vote on their former colleagues’ fates.
  • Children raised to expect warm baby wipes on their asses as infants (h/t Becks) grow up into a generation of coddled, weak-willed young adults. Unfortunately, the rise of Generation “Lionheart” (never written without scarequotes) coincides with the attack of killer Nazi clone warriors from South America, and the West is lost to fascism.
  • Vast, even limitless oil reserves are discovered in Canada. The price of gas plummets, SUVs soon outnumber cell phones, global warming melts ice caps, and a brave band of rebels dares to ask whether the world’s forced conversion to blandly multicultural liberalism and a diet of beer and poutine was too high a price to pay for cheap and abundant energy.
  • By decree of the Ministry of Aesthetics, only young people no more than one standard deviation heavier than the mean body mass index are allowed to have sex. Anyone over 26 caught having nookie is sentenced to a year in a reeducation camp, where inmates hand-sew designer jeans while watching multiple seasons of MTV’s Laguna Beach on giant hi-def monitors.
  • Midway through the sixth Cheney administration…

The elaboration of further scenarios is left as an exercise for the reader.

3 responses to “Envisioning real dystopias”

  1. MF says:

    You have some imagination. This was a great way to start my workday. Only problem is: now I see all of my colleagues as potential teammates and enemies in our r”eality-television-style competitions.”

  2. lane says:


    scare quotes indeed.

  3. Adriana says:

    I remember seeing the wipes warmer when I was pregnant and guffawing. But what’s really going to get generation Lionheart’s asses kicked is parents’ refusal to allow children to fight with each other. Perhaps it’s everyone’s earnest pursuit of wurld peese or we’re not producing sufficient numbers of siblings and are too polite to allow our children to fight with other people’s children. I’m guilty of this, by the way. But it’s always a relief to find another parent who says, “aw, just let them fight it out.” Of course, it’s always the parent of a larger child.