CRYONICS AND THE FUTURE: The years roll by so fast. It has been over 25 years since I read The First Immortal: A Novel Of The Future, a science fiction novel by James L. Halperin, written back in 1988. The First Immortal imagined a future in which computers and robotics provide all of our physical needs. However, in Halperin's non-dystopian novel (are those even legal anymore?) a quasi-socialist government of the future guarantees that everyone is housed and fed, but the needs of people reach beyond just material wealth. People in the aggregate need purpose and responsibilities. Without some type of work or occupation many people will turn to drugs, crime, and other socially detrimental activities. One solution envisioned in his original 1988 novel (it has been revised in dozens of subsequent drafts) was to have the government ensure that all of the citizenry's basic needs are met, but to limit those without occupations to last year's stuff. I don't see that as a complete solution, but it always struck me as a creative approach to the potential future problem.
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Steven Tinel is an old school science fiction fan & blogger.
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