A friend of mine posted a commentary by Isaac Asimov on his views of his visit to the 1964 World’s Fair and his vision for 2014.
Then he asked me for my comments… about 2064….
Here they are… in no particular order….
1. North and South Korea will be unified, just like Germany. That should help make Korea a much more powerful Economic nation because of the sudden access of a large number of capable workers. Will take a decade for the training to sink in… and then they will have a population explosion….
2. Russia will have another Revolution. Russia depends heavily on oil and gas because they have so much inefficiency in manufacturing because of corruption…. Also… Russia bet heavily on gold… which has lost 1/3 of its value recently…. HUGE economic hit!
3. Venezuela will have a Revolution much sooner…. Same reasons…. More catastrophic.
4. China will defy the United Nations in order to corner the market on resources in the East and South China Sea and on the Moon. China will demonstrate a marked willingness to act pompously Imperialistic in order to stake claim to natural resources and valuable rare commodities. No one knows how China is doing Economically… because they distort the numbers they release so much…. China’s Economic fundamentals are likely grossly exaggerated…. And they are bullying many of the people who have been their trading partners…. And… military expansion is tremendously costly…. And… a growing middle class means that more men and women will demand amenities… like healthcare…. China is currently a developing or Third World nation… with reason…. To rise… is expensive…. They have developed a State Capitalism model… which has glaring inherent inefficiencies… because of corruption… and other mechanical issues…. China has been artificially keeping its currency low for decades…. At some point, a correction has to occur….
5. The Sunni-Shi’a Conflict will erupt in the near future. Israel will be a proxy. Saudi Arabia and Iran are fighting a sub rosa war… which will escalate. That is REALLY what the fighting in Syria and Lebanon and now Fallujah, Iraq represents. Saudi Arabia controls the two holiest sites in Islam. Iran DESPERATELY seeks to control the third… The Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem…. But they cannot nuke it! Iran cannot openly fight against Saudi Arabia, because they would lose ALL credibility in the Muslim world and be proved to be Infidels….
6. We KNOW Russia has an Fundamental Islamic Extremist problem. That was why they went into Afghanistan. But China also has large areas with large majorities of Muslims who may be radicalized. India also has issues. The majority of Muslims in all states mentioned are Sunni…. Salafists…. So… suppressing or fighting those peoples may put them in difficult situations with regards to Sunni majority nations. But supporting Iran may be even MORE of an irritant….
7. Iran is using 1970s era ultracentrifuges currently to purify Uranium. Newer centrifuges will be more efficient. Saudi Arabia… Turkey… Egypt… will ALL need to go nuke if Iran does…. Pakistan can help them all…. And WILL…. Because they have money and are Sunni…. India can also make money selling technology.
8. I cannot see Brazil not nuking up…. And developing/improving their Space program. That will threaten Argentina… which is VERY unstable…. South America is ripe for some serious political strife…. But… Mexico is becoming one of the richest and fastest developing Economies in the world…. So… by 2064 the tide of emigration will have crested and turned….
9. Mechanization and technology will improve… become more productive… and FAR cheaper than benefits for humans…. In industrialized nations, the human population will decrease because the cost of healthcare will increase disproportionately…. Robots will become VERY common…. Humans LESS common… at least in industrialized countries… which may invite invasion…. Or at least the threat thereof….
10. The government will rue the influx of immigrants… and take steps to encourage emigration…. Abortion will become much more common. Medical advances that prolong life will be disincentivized… or disallowed… except for the wealth…. Abortion and sterilization and other means of birth control will not just be free… they will be subsidized…. Surrogate birth will become more common… and legitimized as a profession… perhaps Unionized… certainly covered by benefits…. Bigotry and discrimination will increase… as will violence… until ALL weapons and self-defense means are taken away… and some form of martial law via government oversight is instituted…. Many will migrate back to the countries of their heritage….
11. As the Agricultural Technology improves and Healthcare improves… currently under-developed countries will undergo a sudden EXPLOSION in their populations…. Their manufacturing and industrial technologies will also improve…. China and India will be threatened by other smaller nations…. Wars will inevitably result in many places around the globe…. SOMEONE in the industrialized nations will develop and use biological weapons… because they depend on robots… and have the immunological or chemical defenses against the scourge they have unleashed…. Maybe MANY nations will develop strains of bird flu, etc… like the European Union is doing… for “research” purposes….
12. Genetic Modification will be rampant. Cloning of humans will probably not be far enough along in 50 years to be mainstream, but probably will with flora and fauna and foodstuffs….
13. Bacteria, fungi and algae are better for removing carbon dioxide than trees… as is grass… and will also be food and energy sources in the future through development of biophotosynthetic cells….
14. Automobiles and electronics and transportation and communication and manufacturing will become much more efficient… in the industrialized nations. We will scavenge energy from braking and the motion of walking and traveling through tunnels…. Wind power will be miniaturized… and we will harvest the power of the tides… and biochemical reaction of plants… and the difference in temperature between the poles and the hot regions… such as Australia…. Personal transportation will be more for local and less for extended trips… and will therefore be much smaller and more energy efficient… though possible connectable… or entrainable… to form a group for specific excursions… such as family outings…. Vehicles will be autopiloted in populated areas for efficiency and safety.
15. Biodegradable plastics and glasses will be developed (Hint… within the next 3-5 years) that will be used to make everything from computer chips to paper plates… and the amount of garbage generated will be tremendously reduced….
16. The vast majority of people will live in HUGE megaplexes that are designed for maximum efficiency. The biggest will include pods extending from Boston down the East Coast to Boston. The Carolinas and Atlanta may also be connected, as will Florida. The West Coast will be less suitable because of the danger of Earthquakes, though perhaps technology that reduces the risks may allow San Diego to Seattle to be a similar continuation. Transportation of goods and materials will be via fast, efficient high-volume mechanisms such as a mag-lev vac train that travels faster than the speed of sound. Each shipment will be automated. Similar systems will allow transport down to the local level. People will live in specialized areas that make work more efficient. All such cities will have VERY effective Security. No one will carry money. All transactions will be electronic, and monitored by the government. What we eat will be regulated.
17. Many of the World Governments will be unified. The United States will be part of North America with Mexico and Canada.
18. Greece will leave the European Union and join Russia, which will be a bad deal. Greece may provoke a fight with Turkey, which it cannot afford. Italy, Spain and Portugal may leave the European Union as well… but I doubt it. The power of Europe as a whole will decrease and the power of Germany and Northern Europe will rise… so they may leave as a block….
19. Healthcare will stagnate. Become tiered based on Economic and Employment/Union/Government status. Education probably will likely stagnate or decline for the masses, too. But no one will notice that education does. Test scores will fall in America and rise in nations like Germany, Korea, China, India and Iran.
20. Non-lethal or variably lethal weapons will be developed that essentially allow the government to “turn off” brains for a period of time without line-of-sight. The weapon can be deployed via drones, or computers or telephones… via dust… via electronic discharges… via robot…. Through food…. Various forms will be developed. Some like magnetic pulse or soundwave… or hypnosis… or that works with inhalation or skin contact…. And computers and robots (and all other electronics) can be shut down remotely, too.
21. PsyOps will go mainstream… and will be used every day by everyone from government to marketing…. ALL elections will be controlled….
22. The Macroeconomic and Political structure of America and Europe will change radically as the strain from the Keynesian Model and Liberal Progressive Socialism wreck the viability of the experiment. China will not continue to underwrite what they see as wasteful excess and corruption…. Irrational Capitalistic depravity…. And it makes the Chinese leaders look bad in the eyes of their people when they pay for ObamaCare, but do not provide the same level of Healthcare for their own people…. The bill will come due for many rich developed nations living beyond their means in the near future…. America will move towards a model of Fascist Statism, likely including some aspects of State Capitalism… like China…. Laissez Faire Capitalism is over… and so is financial independence… and freedom… in America…. The change will initially be covered up and denied… as we march towards a Union controlled Police State…. But… by 2064 America will either be a Police State or a Vassal State….