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Entries in politics (18)

Thursday
Jan032008

2008 Presidential Campaign (1908)

It seems that American political campaigns start earlier and earlier with each political cycle.

However, if you thought the 2008 presidential race started early, check out this article from the April 16, 1908 Cedar Rapids Evening Gazette (Cedar Rapids, IA) titled, "'Count' Opens Campaign for Presidency in Year 2008." An excerpt along with the piece in its entirety appear below.

Charles Vaden Barton, "the count," one of the choicest cranks that ever infested the capital, has arrived from Seattle to open his campaign to elect himself president in 2008. He announces that he is the John the Baptist of the millennium, and as he has special arrangements by which he beats the undertakers and cannot die, he can start his presidential campaign a long time ahead and work up sentiment gradually. So he is starting 100 years ahead, and expects that by the time he is elected the millennium will begin coincident with his inauguration.


 

See also:
Lyndon B. Johnson on 2063 A.D. (1963)
Hubert H. Humphrey's Future (1967)
Hubert H. Humphrey's Year 2000 (1967)
Governor Knight and the Videophone (Oakland Tribune, 1955)
Edmund G. Brown's Californifuture (1963)
Television: Medium of the Future (1949)
Fruition of Ideals of Democracy (1923)

Wednesday
Nov142007

Edmund G. Brown's Californifuture (1963)

Today we continue our look into the time capsule and booklet titled 2063 A.D. Buried by General Dynamics Astronautics in 1963, there is some question as to where it may now reside, as the General Dynamics Astronautics building has been torn down. Some guessed that it would be at the San Diego Air & Space Museum but my last trip to that city turned up nothing. Hopefully, this time capsule hasn't been lost forever.

The piece below by California Governor Edmund G. Brown appears on page six of the time capsule booklet.

The Honorable Edmund G. Brown
Governor, State of California

I have been asked by those responsible for placing this "space" capsule to write down my guesses about the state of man's space efforts one hundred years from this date when, hopefully, this capsule will be opened.

Most of my life has been spent as a politician. Politicians generally know very little about rockets, satellites and the other trappings of outer space.

It is their task to be concerned about inner space, the still undiscovered space of the mind and the spirit, and about whether the institutions of men on this planet create for the men they are supposed to serve the atmosphere, the psychological spaciousness, in which they can grow to fulfill their human potential.

This is the "space" about which I am concerned in 1963 as I write this statement. Even here, on ground that is much more familiar to me than is outer space, I have few predictions, but many hopes, about life on earth one hundred years from now.

My chief hope is that by the time men will have truly grasped the overriding necessity of freedom as a condition of man's continued existence: freedom from the necessity to hate as well as freedom from oppression of the mind, the spirit and the body.

I hope too that, having grasped this imperative, man, one hundred years from 1963, will have transformed his institutions into guarantors of that freedom.


See also:
General Dynamics Astronautics Time Capsule (1963)
Broken Time Capsule (1963-1997)
Lyndon B. Johnson on 2063 A.D. (1963)

Tuesday
Aug142007

Television: Medium of the Future (1949)

The 1949 book Television: Medium of the Future by Maurice Gorham correctly identifies, but dismisses, a concern about the visual age: voting with your eyes.

Fears have been expressed lest this new reliance on television may lead to choice of candidates for their face rather than their real qualities; that the film-star types will have it all their own way. Personally I see no reason to think that this is a greater danger than we have faced in the radio age. Is it worse to vote for a man whom you have seen and heard than for a man whom you have heard but never seen except for fleeting glimpses in photographs and films? Is there any more reason why a man who is good on television should be a charlatan than a man who is good on radio? Or any inherent merit in a fine radio voice uttering speeches written by somebody else?

Many people ask if Abraham Lincoln could be elected today (he was an ugly, ugly man). What do you think? Is a candidate's appearance kind of like advertising, everyone believes it only works on other people?

Thursday
Aug092007

Headlines of the Near Future (1972)

The 1972 book Futures Conditional contains essays and lists from many different futurists of the era. This list of headlines of the near future, by Billy Rojas, presents readers with events that will "probably happen - in some cases undoubtedly happen - although not necessarily in the order presented."

1972

February

Chiang Kai-shek dead in Taiwan; new regime is created that seeks to "modernize" Formosa. Ten year plan to replace most ideographs with Roman letters is announced. Major effort is made to organize "overseas" Chinese - the millions is southeast Asia, the tens of thousands in America - into a series of formalized trade associations.


March

Safe cigarettes invented: Lorillard stock advances 20 points in one day.

 

July

Chicago firm begins marketing robot "housekeepers": mechanical mice to vacuum rugs and clean floors, automated kitchens that prepare hot meals according to consumer specifications, etc.

 

November

Team of Muskie and Adlai Stevenson III defeats Republicans for Presidency.

 

1973

January

J.Edgar Hoover resigns post as head of FBI.

 

June

Astronauts find evidence of sub-cellular life on the moon - two billion years ago.

 

July

Jackie divorces Ari; she plans to marry David Brinkley.

 

September

New Jersey becomes first state to legalize marijuana.

 

November

Stones break up. New music stirs U.S.; Cheyenne native rock-and-tom-tom group tops charts.

 

December

Peace settlement reached in Middle East; version of Allon plan adopted on a "phase-out" basis; Israel-Jordan to become joint secular state.

 

1974

March

Mao-Tse-tung suffers heart attack in China. Succeeded by Chou En-Lai. Red Guard "party" forms to challenge authority of the government, cultural revolution becomes an underground movement.

 

April

Hovercraft "grass highway" bonds approved by Congress: Boston-Richmond route.

 

May

Haile Selassie dies in Washington hospital. His death removes last obstacle to United States in East Africa, a new nation made up of the former states of Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda.

 

July

South Sudan secedes from Arab Federation; civil war erupts as rebels receive encouragement and aid from Addis Ababa.

 

October

Houston doctor discloses discovery of selective memory-erasing drug.

 

November

Reagan defeated by 350,000 votes.

 

1975

February

Rescue in space; Russians save Americans endangered on orbiting space platform.

 

April

U. of Oklahoma student disorders reach insurrection proportions; social science building destroyed, 4 police, 18 students killed.

 

June

"Electro-pop," completely synthetic beverage starts a new food craze: Electro-snax, Electro-suppers are marketed.

 

August

First space hospital (4 "beds") established by U.S.S.R.

 

September

Socialists return to power in Britain.

 

1976

May

Cabinet restructure in U.S., new secretaries of Education, Environment.

 

October

Sex-selection industry booms. Chemical treatments enable prospective parents to predetermine sex of offspring.

 

November

Allard Lowenstein defeats Buckley in N.Y. Senate contest.

 

1977

January

Temporary lunar base set up by U.S. - 6 men, 2 months.

 

June

Famine conditions worsen in India, Java. Communist revolution develops.

 

October

Sexual intercourse allowed in Yale sex ed. classes. Harvard follows suit.

 

November

Brazilian church secedes from Rome; "second reformation" as Dutch, some Americans, also walk out.

 

December

Tito dies in Yugoslavia, unsuccessful leftist coup to oust hand-picked successor.

 

1978

March

Religious revival reported in Africa: Nigeria, Dahomey, Ivory Coast, Guinea become Baha'i countries.

 

July

Japanese firm announces opening of sea-chains, series of floating cities to accommodate 10,000 people each; located in Polynesia.

 

August

Police force retired in Seattle; replaced by paid, plain clothes community people.

 

1979

February

First "time traveler." Star of ten-year hibernation for Minneapolis man.

 

September

Radio signals from vicinity of 41 Y Cygni indicate intelligent life in the universe.

 

October

Laser "arrays" used by commercial ships to navigate Antarctic waters; business firms start pilot plants on southernmost continent.

 

December

U.S. court system reformed. New features include "maximum wait law" - no more than 30 days between arrest and trial - and "obsolete statute law" - any law on the books is retired after 20 years unless specifically renewed by legislative act.

 

See also:
Sea City 2000 (1979)
The Future of Leisure That Never Arrived (New York Times, 2007)
Space Colony Possible (The News, 1975)
Civilized Adultery (1970)
Space Colony Pirates (1981)
The Population Bomb: Scenario 1 (1970)
The Population Bomb: Scenario 2 (1970)
The Population Bomb: Scenario 3 (1970)
Closer Than We Think! Robot Housemaid (1959)

Wednesday
Aug012007

Lyndon B. Johnson on 2063 A.D. (1963)

Today we have Lyndon B. Johnson's predictions for the future of space exploration, as printed in the book 2063 A.D..

Perhaps the outstanding feature of a prediction about the next century in space is that our imagination today is too limited to visualize the vast possibilities. In other words, more will be accomplished in space than we can now come anywhere near labeling as specific projects and benefits.

Among the space activities in the next one hundred years will probably be: weather control, global communication, global navigation, regular travel of people and freight between places on earth and space stations and the planets, and international policing against space and terrestrial conflicts.

The benefits flowing from space activities will be even more widespread than the space activities per se. Education, language, living standards, and world peace will all benefit as space exploration and space living become a permanent part of man's institutional structure.

See also:
General Dynamics Astronautics Time Capsule (1963)
Broken Time Capsule (1963-1997)

Tuesday
Jul172007

Lives of Women to Improve (1923)

Mary Garrett Bay, Chairman (yes, it read "Chairman") of the New York City League of Women Voters wrote a short piece in the February 12, 1923 Bridgeport Telegram (Bridgeport, Connecticut) about the women of 2022.

The life of even the average woman will be broader and better. Woman's drudgery in the household will be eliminated, her car of the family will be lessened as new inventions come in and new methods of work. Women, like men, will do the tasks for which they are best fitted by their permanent gifts and training.

Politically, women will be powerful. They will share with men the real constructive work of government. Many will hold office. If there is not a woman President, the thought of one will shock no one. It will seem natural and proper to elevate women to whatever positions they have the ability to fill. There will be no woman's political party and no man's political party. The two sexes will work together harmoniously.

See also:
Thinking Men and Women Predict Problems of World Century Hence (1923)
Longer Honeymoons, Happier Wives (1923)
What May Happen in the Next Hundred Years (Ladies Home Journal, 1900)
Futuristic Air Travel (circa 1900)
In the Twentieth Century (Newark Daily Advocate, 1901)

Sunday
Jul082007

Fruition of Ideals of Democracy (1923)

In a February 12, 1923 Bridgeport Telegram (Bridgeport, Connecticut) article Cordell Hull, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, bet on the survival of the American two-party system. That wasn't a surprising prediction. What is somewhat surprising is that the assumed alternative was a one-party system.

The principle of democracy being eternal, they will necessarily exist a hundred years from now, and the achievements of government, through the application of those principles to changing conditions, will logically be greater than they have been in the last 100 years.

That there will be two political parties then as now seems almost inevitable, if progress is to continue. It is scarcely conceivable that human nature can change in one century sufficiently for all to think alike. In such an event there would also be danger of inertia - and inertia would mark the beginning of decadence.

Democratic government means a greater diffusion of power, less restriction of the individual and therefore less regulation by laws. With the development of intelligence class differences and distinctions should disappear, therefore the representative legislative bodies of the people, if there are more than one, would be truly representative bodies of all the people.

With a continuation of the discoveries of science, their uses and applications, and a more general acceptance of the fundamental moralities of Christianity I should say that the world, and the United States in particular will be a pretty good place to live in 2022.

See also:
Thinking Men and Women Predict Problems of World Century Hence (1923)
Governor Knight and the Videophone (Oakland Tribune, 1955)
Hubert H. Humphrey's Future (1967)
Hubert H. Humphrey's Year 2000 (1967)