I'll tell ya: ever since reading Toffler's predictions for the future of the two "Second Wave" superpowers in 1990's Powershift, and watching it come true in the Soviet Union less than a year later, there's a part of me that's been waiting for the other shoe to drop.
Yes, I'm fully aware that this kind of apocalyptic paranoia has contributed to the paralyzing stasis of my life since graduation.
Still, there's an important truth in play: things aren't getting any better in the Untidy States, and the best-case scenario is to hope that the continual erosion of our rights and freedoms will be sufficiently gradual that we won't notice.
And the alternatives ... well, we seem to be using all the worst clichés of Cyberpunk as a road map as it is, why not that one, too?*
I would really like to convince myself that this is just pessimism due to the latest economic downturn, but even during the boom years of the '90s, I saw the "New Democrats" quietly and casually continuing the trends of restricting the rights of biological individuals and increasing the freedoms of "corporate persons". Some oppressed groups have made a few advances in acceptance, but really, it's just welcoming them to the same Village that the rest of us live in. One step forward, two steps back.
I'm in the process of reevaluating my life, realigning my goals, and trying to get a better grip on how the "real world" works.
And around here ... it doesn't. Not very well. Not in ways that will do me any good, now or in the future.
Realistically, if I'm trying to reconstruct my present to make plans for my future, "emigration" needs to be one of my options—even and especially if I land the elusive "Real Job" locally.
The big issue, of course, is that the other Anglophone nations don't really want more USian expatriates.
This is not a post about pessimism or defeatism. This is a post about options.
*See next post.