From Brave New World Revisited (1958) by Aldous Huxley:
Does a majority of the population think it worth while to take a good deal of trouble, in order to halt and, if possible, reverse the current drift towards totalitarian control of everything? In the United States – and America is the prophetic image of the rest of the urban-industrial world as it will be a few years from now – recent public opinion polls have revealed that an actual majority of young people in their teens, the voters of tomorrow, have no faith in democratic institutions, see no objection to the censorship of unpopular ideas, do not believe that government of the people by the people is possible, and would be perfectly content, if they can continue to live in the style to which the boom has accustomed them, to be ruled, from above, by an oligarchy of assorted experts. That so many of the well-fed young television-watchers in the world’s most powerful democracy should be so completely indifferent to the idea of self-government, so blankly uninterested in freedom of thought and the right to dissent, is distressing, but not too surprising. “Free as a bird,” we say, and envy the winged creatures for their power of unrestricted movement in all the three dimensions. But, alas, we forget the dodo.
5 thoughts on “Brave New World Revisited, revisited or Consider the dodo”
…ruled, from above, by an oligarchy of assorted experts…
Has it ever been any other way?
Sometimes the quality of the oligarchy has been better. They tend to get worse over time though.
Not much has changed from 1958 then, other than the decline of quality oligarchs as you say.
Hard to imagine people from earlier in the century looking at our politicians today and wondering what happened to us.
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I think people think the future should always be ‘better’, whatever that means, but it never is because people are just the same in whatever era.