Declining societies - was Idiocracy prophetic?
Last updated on June 7, 2016, 8:52 by Sebastian Mihai
I recently ran into the ad below. I'm kind of used to seeing these, and I unconsciously block them. But this one clicked. It related to the society in the movie Idiocracy way too well.
It contains the following lures:
1. Be more attractive physically
2. Own a bigger TV
3. Do nothing demanding but be rewarded
Remember how in Idiocracy, the brightest scientifical minds were put to work exclusively on cosmetics and virility enhancers? It's why they stagnated technologically, causing all sorts of disasters, such as the garbage heap avalanche. That's for #1 on that list. Of course, I could also discuss the men's "get huge!" and the women's "get thin!" oft-encountered Internet ads, or maybe scour through my email account's Spam folder for drug advertising, but that's just icing on the cake.
Bigger TVs; The big TV is an emblem of our consumerism. It's the medium through which we receive our daily hours of bad news, shallow and predictable humour, and a solid chunk of advertising (about a third of the overall programming).
And man, does it have to be huge! Frito Pendejo from Idiocracy had a huge TV. He sat in front of it and let his idle mind absorb "Ow my balls!". All this while surrounded by advertisments. His TV was large.
Think of the last time you went and bought a TV. How hard was it to contain your temptation to get the next larger model? Yeah, I thought so.
Doing nothing while being rewarded has been advertised for a while online. A stay-at-home mom who makes $6,300 per month? Not bad; easy money. You are the 1,000,000th visitor and have won a special prize! Who the hell thinks this can be true? There is no free money unless you were born with it, or won it at the lottery. The people in Idiocracy didn't really do much. But we know for a fact that they liked money - billions of it. (Frito said so!)
I've read a few articles on the deterioration of society, and a few against it. The ones of doomsayer flavour presented few ideas and conclusions I hadn't drawn myself. The rose-coloured ones I found amusing. Everything is cool. We have the Internet now, and societies can only improve. Globalization, homogenization, and inter-connectedness.
Will all of us be Frito Pendejos in a few hundred years? Have we already begun gazing through the window to our future?
July 23, 2015 update
In the Idiocracy movie, there is a humorous scene with a lady ordering McDonalds-like fries from an automated vending machine on the street.
McDonalds is introducing automated tellers to replace cashiers.
June 7, 2016 update
Here, again, is the Idiocracy version of television programming, laden with ridiculous advertisments.
Samsung is introducing the "next generation" of ads.
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