|“I remember a time when we were free.”|
Charles Stross, author of the book Rule 34, and those of you who have been on the internet for at least a couple of years know exactly what that title is a reference to, has been spending his time recently making predictions about the future. You know, like the Amazing Criswell. Although Strauss, being a “hard” science fiction writer, might have an outlook that’s a little more grounded in reality. But hopefully not. His most recent predictions, this time for the year 2512, include a mention of raccoons. He posits, in this nightmare dystopia hellscape, that rather than taking the time to develop robots with artificial intelligence we may rely on breeding or genetically manipulating animals to do mundane tasks. He suggests raccoons that have been conditioned to collect and wash fruits in exchange for some kind of “heroin.” I of course find this idea appalling, but am a little torn on how to react. On the one hand, raccoons are cute and shouldn’t be enslaved, but on the other this was the set up to how the Planet of the Apes was created (more specifically the 1972 “sequel” Conquest of the Planet of the Apes.) So if I were to stop the immediate threat of enslaved raccoons I might prevent the super awesome Planet of the Raccoons.