Conversations with the Ghost of America’s Future Past

America's Future Past

by Carson Starkey and Troy M. Olson

The following takes place during the hottest summer on record in the year 2028, breaking the previous record set all the way back in 2027.

On a lonely park bench, somewhere in between Main Street and Evergreen Terrace….

Carson

I suspect that President Rubio’s third round of tax cuts will be as popular as his first two. Who would’ve thought that voters would tolerate combined giveaways of seventeen trillion dollars over four years? And the Iran War? I mean, damn, fifteen trillion over ten years? Again, that seemed unthinkable after what should have been public relations catastrophes in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But I suppose when we relied on such roundly unpopular candidates like Hillary Clinton and Andrew Cuomo to oppose Republican policies, we got the outcomes that we deserved. I hope Presidential candidate Cory Booker and his Vice Presidential pick Mark Zuckerberg fare better.

Troy

Right. I keep thinking back to a bet I made with a longtime friend, he is a huge history buff and always thought my insistence that there would be a war with Iran was ridiculous because it lacked an appropriate and likely instigating event. But what was the Gulf of Tonkin? WMDs? It’s frustrating to see how incredibly bright people are not prepared rhetorically for what the powers that be want to actually do.

On the subject of Zuck, I think he would be a good strategic pick, although certainly a poor symbol and torch carrier for his generation. Or perhaps the perfect symbol? Simple electoral math tells us that adding up the Northeast and West Coast still gets you a loss. I do appreciate that he is more willing to espouse progressive values openly though. Booker has always been far too cautious. Afraid of offending people. It all started so promising for him with “Street Fight”.. sigh.

Carson

Well, Zuckerberg isn’t really a liberal. He gets in front of a reporter and spews meaningless word salad about innovation. He doesn’t really have a worldview. He has a set of opinions that he thinks are stylish at any given moment. And he believes deeply in “meritocracy” because America rewards people like him. Which is why he and Cory Booker sponsored lots of grift machine charter schools in Newark, New Jersey. Excuse my ferocious concept for Zuckerberg.

Troy

Agreed. I’m not saying Zuck is a great leader of people or anything. In fact, he is not particularly great at anything other than creating a multi-billion dollar company based around the principle that we should all be “peeping Tom’s.” That’s a hard sell, or maybe it’s not a hard sell at all… but credit where it is due.

I have personally observed one success story in charter schools, and it is pretty clear over the last few decades that one success story is all that grift needs to keep up the well-oiled machine running.

Carson

I sure wish that Democrats in the Senate had fought harder to oppose President Rubio’s nationwide privatization plan for metropolitan water supplies. I guess Dick Durbin and Chuck Schumer had other priorities than protecting people from lead poisoning. It is a damn shame that so many had to die.

Troy

Protecting people used to be the base level of governance and the state. I’m starting to think all those crazy anarcho-libertarian casuals from college were right. That being said, they are far too insufferable to give credit to. And of course, self-fulfilling prophecy.

Speaking of Schumer, it would be nice if the now-40 year old hipster class would show up during the primary. If we can’t get a progressive and advocate for working families elected in the state of NY the party is truly hopeless. Let the soul searching begin.

Carson

The hipster class talks a good game about social responsibility because they pay for useless shit at Whole Foods. At the same time, they were voting for Daley Jr., Rahm, Hillary, and Schumer. Ask them to pony up for infrastructure or housing integration, and they retreat to platitudes about freedom.

Troy

Right. We diagnosed the problem years ago. We need a better team, but what choice is there? We have no choice but to appreciate the last few white males that still vote for the Democratic Party. It speaks to the power of white privilege that even in their mathematical irrelevancy they still hold sway.

Carson

If only they could be appraised of their situation accurately. Illinois has produced some weird statewide results in the last two decades. Surface lefties in the Senate, but ultra-conservative Mayors and Governors.  Tammy Duckworth has become Durbin’s protege. They’ll have at least two more Republican Governors.

Troy

The sad reality of midterm leftist apathy.

Carson

And a Daley has reclaimed the city as rightful Irish property.

Troy

Ha. We could probably via political Dukes and Earls and economic royalists who fund them, make a map of the privatization of the United States. Replace Chicago with the “Realm of Daley”, etc.

Carson

So many errors. So little party building. Trusting Vice President Castro to take on immigration reform in 2017-18 was also a complete failure, but having that be plan-A, B, and C was the real failure. Too many articles and activists spouting off about “demographic inevitability” after the 2012 election.

Troy

All of this makes me think back to the final year of the Obama administration, if only we knew then how good we had it. And if only the political impacts of his Presidency did not blind millions of American leftists and young people to the importance of party building. Too much emphasis on the Presidency, at the expense of party building. In addition, an irrational belief that the other party saying crazy things will deliver you the Presidency in perpetuity when two-hundred plus years of American history says otherwise. All the wrong takeaways and lessons learned.

Carson

Amen.

What you just read may scare you, I know it scares me.

However, there is still something we can collectively do about it.

We can change the future…. if we try.

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