Suppose They Gave A Future And Nobody Cared?

Last week, the White House unveiled an ambitious, wide-ranging, and revolutionary plan to outfit U.S. highways with electric car charging stations, and increase the number of Federal electric vehicles out on the road:

By working together across the Federal government and with the private sector, we can ensure that electric vehicle drivers have access to charging stations at home, at work, and on the road – creating a new way of thinking about transportation that will drive America forward. Today’s announcements demonstrate a continued partnership between the Administration, states, localities, and the private sector to achieve these shared goals…

The implications of this announcement are staggering, not the least of which is that it demonstrates a lack of confidence in the future of fossil fuels and related financial/international interests. Combined with Elon Musk’s statement in the recent National Geographic documentary Before The Flood that there needs to be “sort of popular uprising against” the fossil fuel sector and what seems like a White House “PR rollout” for the self-driving car industry…things are changing. Shuffle our international BFF and enemy lists accordingly over the decade ahead.

Of course, Donald Trump could take office January 1st and change all those plans. He could cozy up to Big Oil, kill all the electric car and other future technology initiatives, and attempt to make good on his promise that he’s going to bring us back to the 1950s when everything was great.

But even then, when the financial “positives” outweigh the “negatives,” he and anyone who wants to make lots of money will eventually back the new tech. I mean, we are envisioning a future where one of the biggest drains on any business’s coffers—paychecks and benefits for humans—could be significantly eliminated by introducing more robotic workers. You know a lot of corporate interests are going to like that.

Much is happening right now that could radically change the way we live, work, and generate an income. But outside of the tech categories on mainstream news sources, not much of the media seems to give a shit. And, consequently, not much of the public seems to give a shit.

Yes, this U.S. election is very important. But within the space of time in which the media and public became obsessed with every last bit of minutia about the election—stoking greater and greater piles of mass anxiety—a rapid technological revolution happened. And the ramifications of these advancements—drones, AI, robots, automated vehicles, CRISPR, augmented reality etc.—are going to play a bigger and more profound role in our future than any one political figurehead possibly could.