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Apr 15

Zootopia and the Trouble with “Perfect” Futures

Phil and Stephen talk about perfect worlds and why we never seem to get to them. Or, when we do get to them, why they aren’t really perfect.

First up, a future that people are more worried about than thinking will be perfect — a world where the robots do all the work.

Automation may mean a post-work society but we shouldn’t be afraid

Alternatively, some more near-term utopias are all about the work:

The Futurist Start-Up Sui Generis Is Uber, but for Techno-Socialist City States

These city states are modeled on Singapore. They are run as business entities — not democratic.
Lots of trade and commerce of various kinds going on. Also, people can do voluntary “public work” using an Uber-like app to generate income.

Let’s compare these utopias with the surprisingly transhumanist vision of a Disney’s animated film Zootopia.

Here’s a world that enjoys the benefits of animal uplift, but they have achieved it independently — without human help. (Apparently there are no humans in this world.) But even in the over-the-rainbow future where predators no longer eat prey, trouble still has a way of rearing its ugly head — and fangs.

What might this tell us about our own over-the-rainbow futures?

WT 150

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