Thursday, September 12, 2002

"The Marching Morons"

Back in 1951, Galaxy published a short story by C.M. Kornbluth titled "The Marching Morons." Set just a little ways into the future, it was a cautionary tale about smart people limiting their reproduction while stupid people breed like rabbits. When I first read it in the 1970s, it was amusing, but seemed an unlikely future. Every once in a while, I see something that scares me into wondering if we aren't getting there, after all.

This evening, Gateway Computer had a TV ad for their new PC that looks rather like the iMac. In this commercial, Gateway's PC bounces between the iMacs, swiveling, etc. There, in small print, "Base and monitor movement simulated."

Who, exactly, do Gateway's legal beagles think they are selling to? Small children? Mental defectives? Other lawyers? What next? Perhaps movie previews will contain small print warning, "Not literally accurate."

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