Assuming that the collapse of the American experiment in democratic republicanism is indeed just around the corner, what can we expect in the world of the future?
It's said that only fools and charlatans - or neoconservatives - predict the future ("We will be welcomed as liberators!"), but we're going to run the risk of being called as such, and hazard a guess as to the general outlines of an American society in perhaps as little as twenty years (a mere single generation) in the future.
Able-bodied citizens, but only those with National Defense-related jobs, will pass relatively unhindered, while constantly monitored by the millions of scanning devices of all types everywhere, including constant GPS monitoring of mandatory cell phones. The rich 1% will also pass freely in their heavily-armored but luxuriously appointed Humvee Escalades, including CEOs of Debt Collection Agencies, Armaments Industries, Oil Executives and their servants, the Appointed Politicians.
There will be a DHS camera - or four - on every street corner, public transit vehicle and all public and virtually every private building on the planet. We will be watched, listened to, x-rayed, retina-scanned, sniffed for radioactive or biological weapons materials, and subject to rendition on suspicion; not of anything in particular - just plain suspicion.
Remember always: there is no appeal, because there are no courts, just military commissions.
Those without the subdermal electronic implants of National Defense Workers will be stopped, not in any racially-profiled way or even randomly, but systematically, regularly and often; forced to submit to full-body searches when attempting to venture out of their assigned sector, zone, or grid before or after curfew. This will be the response due to the increasingly frequent use of body-cavity suicide bombs, developed - ironically enough - by our very own US of A Department of Homeland Security in a typically bureaucratic ass-backward retaliation for the Tamil Tigers' use of prepubescent girls as bait for otherwise loyal American eco-tourists fearful of sexual contact with Ebola-carrying Nigerian-Chinese agents provocateurs.
Foreign nationals must be accompanied by at least three heavily-armed members of Homeland Security at all times, including bathroom visits.
American society will be divided into the following classes, each (except for the last) with their own heavily guarded residential zones: The Owners, Corporate Executives, Appointed Politicians, National Defense Workers (includes members of the only remaining labor union, United Prison Guards), Citizen Mercenaries, non-National Defense-related employed Free Corporate Citizens, and the unemployed and socially useless Great Unwashed, who make up 80% of the population. This last group may actually be able to beg, steal or rob enough to afford to live in tarpaper shacks with roofs but no plumbing; failing that, discarded HDTV shipping cartons under America's few remaining intact bridges.
Your DHS-issued cell phone will be permanently tapped as a matter of course; your Internet surfing and HDTV watching monitored and dutifully reported, assuming you can afford the rates charged by The Communications Company after the 111th Coors Extra Lite Corporate Congress opted to eliminate Net Neutrality and allowed the sole remaining telecommunications company to charge what its Free Market Division dictated as just and reasonable users' fees, including, but not limited to interest owed on late fees, unto the seventh generation.
And no 2 year service contracts: Lifetime. Early termination of your contract means just that: your termination.
Deaths by heart attacks as a result of TASER use by security personnel will exceed deaths caused by drunken drivers, but MADD will not change its name to MAT.
All former Third World natives will be employed in the following occupations only: the tourist sex trade; bartenders and wait-staff for same; the cultivation, harvesting and processing of psychotropic drugs for the zombification of non-National Defense Workers; painting and other maintainence of the Rio Grande Anti-Illegal Immigration Great Wall; as Third World internal security forces, or their victims.
All financial transactions will be carried out electronically, and each and every transaction monitored by the DHS for possible connections to terrorist fund-raising organizations, the names of which will fill a DeepBlue-class data bank.
There will be no portable cash and the possession of precious metals - gold, platinum, and silver - will subject the owner to immediate alternative methods of interrogation, including waterboarding, but not to the point of crushing vital internal organs, and just short of actual death from asphyxiation. Remember: there is no appeal.
There will be no "death tax," as Americans will no longer die; they will simply be disappeared, and their public records expunged or stamped Top Secret in the Interest of National Security.
For the good news, China will be owned by Google.
This article is an original Reality Frame Reprint, first published Nov 20, 2006