The the future looks bleak.
The robots will replace some jobs but they won’t get rid of work. Technology is shaping and mutating culture, education surveillance, healthcare, propaganda, media, war and behind it is all is business. Will every inch of this world be privatised. What will privatisation even look like in twenty or fifty years?
Will there still be any public space or only ‘public order’. Who will enforce it? Police? They will be busy managing the result of an ecosystem in decline. More prisons will be built, more walls and borders. Are people being kept out or in?
Who or what will be the big global powers in 100 years and what of the nation state? Will war just last forever now or did it ever end? Will there be a new re-imagining of democracy and the fight for it - or are we on the road to fascist hell with microchips in our skulls.
It is all deeply uncertain but what about Ireland in just a few short years?
Imagine the year 2020
Miriam O'Callaghan is president.
Monsanto Cola Sachs McDonalds LTD, the company formerly known as Irish Water, is in the process of restructuring. Your bill is €900 pa, non-executive director Phil Hogan is paid €479,652 and the pipes were never fixed.
The majestic faces of Denis O'Brien, Michael O'Leary & Lucinda Creighton have been carved into the side of Benbulbin.
Irish politicians have promised to conduct an all-party review on the possibility of ordering a scoping exercise into establishing a working group to examine the potential for holding a referendum on the eighth amendment, sometime after the next election.
Diageo have released a special Fergus Finlay brand of Lager. €26 a pint in Temple Bar.
All hospitals north of Athlone and west of the Shannon have been closed. Some suitable buildings have been converted into workhouses owned by Peter Sutherland.
All remaining hospitals have been “streamlined” into a “one stop shop” called “ProfitMed”. The bed shortage problem was solved by simply getting rid of beds. Now the daily number on trolleys is seen as a measure of success and for those sleeping in the carpark, envy.
Health Minister Eddie Hobbs, on the recommendation of advisers Norah Casey & Bressie, has just launched a new 'national mental health initiative’ in which the bewildered and still heavily indebted population are herded into 80,000 capacity 'mandatory smile meetings’ hosted by Hector. Despite initial hiccups, the minister promised waiting time for places should be down eighteen months by 2036.
Average rent in Dublin is fifteen grand a month, “a bargain” according Karl Deeter noting “the city centre is really only one bus from Longford”.
Ireland continues to “punch above its weight” in the lucrative perpetual global war market after Shannon Airport was, for the third consecutive year, awarded Best Value Café of any “rendition hub” west of Fallujah. The begrudgers laughed when the idea of catering provided entirely by robot was first mooted.
After four years on the run, John Waters has been captured and forced to marry David Quinn at gunpoint.
All newspapers have gone bankrupt, some almost immediately after the Graham Dwyer trial ended, however the TV licence is still collected, by drone. The Irish media now consists entirely of The 24hr Pat Rabbitte Show on RTÉ, pausing occasionally for the Angelus, and TheJournal.ie posting twitter reaction to the Pat Rabbitte Show.
Herr Klaus Bauer Holtzmann III, the Prime Minister of Greece, has just been removed from office by military for being too slow with 'reforms’.
Gerry Adams was still never in the IRA