Wait a minute… what? Aren’t I always talking about how the world is screwed no matter what we do?
Actually, no. I’m very precise in my writing. I never say the world is screwed. I say the Western world is screwed. When I say “Western world,” I mean the US, Europe, Canada, to a large degree Japan, and partially Australia and New Zealand. When I say “screwed,” I mean that the overall culture and relative stability of the economies of these current nations will be going bye-bye some time in the next few decades, regardless of politics, politicians, political activism, or internet bitching. (The only thing that might save the Western world is if someone invents something that changes everything.)
But regardless of what happens to the Western world, the future is very bright for the world, as in the whole world, the entire human race. Technological advancement, even if it slows because the more innovative Western world collapses, will increase to the point where you’re going to be very happy if you live long enough to see it.
Just medical technology advances alone are exciting. In your lifetime, cancer, obesity, and most degenerative diseases will be eliminated from human existence. Aging, at least as we understand the concept, will become a thing of the past. We will be living in a world that looks like the movie In Time, where every adult of all ages look about 25 years old (though I’ll look 37; I think men look better in their late 30s than they do in their 20s).
Via genome therapy and nanotechnology, you’ll be able to do things like run for as long as you want without getting tired (via nanobots supplying oxygen to your muscles), hold your breath underwater for as long as you want (via nanobots supplying oxygen to your blood), completely eliminate wrinkles and bad skin (via stem cells harvested from you and transformed to youthful cells), eat whatever you want without gaining weight (via nanobots “eating” the bad shit in your stomach before your body absorbs it) and all kinds of other crazy stuff I alluded to here.
What about robotics? At some point in our lifetimes, via robots and 3D printing, you can build a nice house out in the desert for about $1,000. Eco-water reclamation systems will provide all the plants and water you need out there, and solar energy will be more than enough to power your life. Elon Musk just unveiled solar roof tiles that look 100% real and power your house. This is nothing compared to what’s coming. It will transform the way we view costs, buying, and selling.
For us libertarians, there’s a special added bonus to this technological advancement. In our lifetimes, for the first time in human history, technology will level the playing field between the individual and the state. Just think of some IRS agents hassling some farmer to pay his 40% income tax, when the guy pulls out a pocket nuclear device (that only cost him $800) and says, “40%? Yeah, I don’t think so. I’ll pay you 10%. Take it or get nuked, asshole.”
It will change the entire way we view government, taxes, funding of government services, and collectivism. Imagine being able to tell the US federal government to go fuck off and getting away with it(!). Governments and politicians are going to be forced to rethink how they manage the world.
If the thought of a farmer with a nuke horrifies you, don’t worry. Technology is always invented to counter other technology. If pocket nukes are common, we’ll have nuclear-proof shields and various other technology to protect us, just like computer viruses and anti-virus software.
Moreover, because of concepts like self-preservation and mutually assured destruction, we humans have a pretty good track record of avoiding the really horrible technologies that we have access to. As just one example, we invented the nuclear bomb back in 1945, which was 71 years ago, and last time I checked, we’re all still here, despite the fact that many nukes have been in the hands of furiously angry madmen during that time (including Kim Jong-un).
Even economically, things are looking up for the world. Not in the Western world; were staring down the barrel of a gun over here, but in the entire world. Poverty around the entire world has been reduced more in the last 50 years than in the previous 500 years.
Even the West has benefited; people under the poverty line in the US have food, shelter, and flushing toilets, which is beyond what most people in Africa have and beyond what the wealthiest Americans had just 100 years ago. 100% of Americans below the poverty line have a television and clean water, 72% have a car, and 70% have air conditioning.
Seth Godin recently posted an article with graphs which show that worldwide, in the last few decades, infant mortality has plummeted, deaths from war have plummeted, and life expectancy has grown.
Although my long-term expectations for the Western world are pretty pessimistic, my long-term expectations for the world, the human race, and my life on this Earth are very bright. Try not to forget that during the doom and gloom that we all have to suffer through living in a collapsing empire, the future is very bright for those men who are brave enough, and prepared enough, to take advantage of freedom and opportunity when it presents itself. That’s what my book is all about.