Monday, April 26, 2010

The Age of Acquirius

This could very well be the beginning of a new age! If China revalues the renminbi, the two-state solution finally gains traction in the Middle East, Google acquires the rights to most of human thought, and North Korea’s Kim Jong-il finally acknowledges his polymorphic perversity and stops trying to silence critics of his dictatorship, then we can only assume that the problem of cold fusion will soon be cracked. Imagine a world in which energy is no longer something that major powers fight over. As Freud once said about analysis, once it’s over, the real problems begin. If we accept Marx’s analysis, the drive for economic hegemony infuses international politics. Without the struggle for resources, life will lose its meaning and many world leaders will walk around with sunken eyes, like Max Von Sydow losing his game of chess with Death in The Seventh Seal. 
What will this new age be called? The Age of Acquirius. When Wall Street is battered as it was in the past year, analysts say that the market is making an adjustment. Wasn’t Period of Adjustment the name of a Tennessee Williams play, later made into a movie starring Jane Fonda? But what is this new age? Thorsten Veblen’s conspicuous consumption is still an apt description of the overarching materialism that has spread exponentially in our time. Our economies have grown from the horse drawn chariot of supply and demand to the nuclear powered rockets of computer-generated algorithms. Profits of some hedge funds exceed the GNP of modest countries, while England is referred to as Iceland on the Thames and the entire country of Greece faces the equivalent of a massive foreclosure proceeding. An explosion of information has awakened whole continents of knowledge, yet newspapers are defunct and the democratization of truth via outlets like Wikipedia has crushed the notion of a moral center. Is this the paradigm shift that Thomas Kuhn was alluding to in The Structure of Scientific RevolutionsYeats’s oft-quoted lines ring true once again: “The best lack all conviction and the worst/ Are filled with passionate intensity.” 


  1. Something tells me that Max Von Sydow lost his proverbial game of chess with Death a long time ago. And death was played by Jane Fonda in the remake.

  2. I like these kinds of high concept ideas in which performers and thinkers mix it up. SP


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