“Greetings Friends.” That’s how I’ll start on my Youtube, many a time, as I leave behind me a wake of bubbles. Blowing bubbles. HP4E.
We’ve been galloping through a lot of Americana recently, starting with Orson Welles, a lynchpin in our story, a hub, a grand central. His civil rights activism — extending into widening the scope of “the common man” via cinema — and his scaring us to death that Halloween in 1938, with his dramatic interpretation of War of the Worlds, by a different Wells.
Hollywood became a mecca for acting troupes, already accomplished, endowed with skills. Orson was recruited from New York on the basis of having already made a splash with Voodoo Macbeth (as many called it) starting in 1936, with an all black cast, well rehearsed, from Harlem.
His Halloween stunt is what concerns us here more, given the Mars Attacks! angle. We want to dive deep into science fiction, not just for fun, but with an eye towards replacing “capitalism” and “communism” and just about any other ism that thinks it owns the stage.
We plan to keep would be road hogs from sucking all the bandwidth out of the room with their arrogance. We crush and recycle, or simply shrink, returning the ideology back to inventory, but with diminished influence, less in-your-face obnoxiousness.
To understand this plan, you might want to dial back to Dial, then in the care of Margaret Fuller. A young United States was busy asserting its intellectual independence from Old Europe (which included Britain) and setting out on its own, or in the company of the existing nations.
Quakers had planned to make treaties. The Indian Wars and Manifest Destiny land grab was less their idea than the uncontrollable pressure of immigration, so unpopular had life in Europe by then become, in light of this beckoning alternative.
Were these domestic civilizations socialist? Were they communist? Had these words been invented? Karl Marx had yet to set pen to paper. Great dynasties had come and gone, in China, Egypt, Persia, Europe. None of the thinking had been in “modern” terms, yet humanity had already but thousands upon thousands of years on its odometer.
The mathematics had developed a lot around water management and irrigation. Getting all the crops planted, watered, harvested, meant keeping inventories of seed. Seeds could be traded, sometimes with a promise of repayment, with money serving as a token of this bridge through time, to redeemability in the future.
Imagine a “capitalist” coming along with the “wrong idea” about capitalism. “I believe in city-states, known as capitals, and I play the game of continuously repositioning them, to advance the prosperity and success of our planetary scenario.”
Such a person is perhaps out of his or her mind, or more likely has a poor grasp of English, as this is not what “capitalism” means. What if our “capitalist” were from Mars? That might account for its alien way of talking. Besides, how does one “reposition” capitals? One doesn’t simply pick up and move a city, much less a city-state.
According to the Emersonian doctrine, the human individual was the source of divinity aboard Spaceship Earth, and the Light radiated from everyman, from the common or average person. That was the new view of the democratically minded, and some royals were eager to embrace the idea,
Queen Marie of Romania a good example. She and her entourage came all the way out to Maryhill Museum, to dedicate the place and endow it with some loot (future exhibits). Old Europe was transferring some eggs to this new basket, this new democracy in the Pacific region (Washington State).
Maryhill is situated along the Columbia Gorge, where cinematography was being reinvented. From tinted glass slides to large landscapes, the still photography of the day and turned to chronicling vistas, not just faces and families. A lot of the savvy was based in the San Francisco Bay area.
Hollywood would take over in a next chapter, and bring us to the brink of Disney World in Orlando. World Fairs and Expos would bring the public into their brave new future, featuring giant sports stadia (predicted by Wells), freeway networks (the interstate system), and of course AC and DC current.
Our cities could stay lit 24/7 and whole new lifestyles, dark themed, could be pioneered around the “night owl” and the “night club”. The theater as known to Shakespeare would become the theater known as film and television, with Orson Welles a bridging figure.
During FDR’s presidency, the great public works projects of the 20th Century got underway, including the great hydro dams of the Columbia Gorge region.
Now sold on the promise of hydroelectricity, thanks to successes in the Empire State at Niagara, the goal was to establish an inexhaustible supply of hydropower, in competition with coal and oil. Los Angeles and Las Vegas would become possible.
Rayburn and Johnson made the lights go on in rural Texas (from a political perspective), thereby revolutionizing the farming lifestyle.
Sam Hill, the “good roads” engineer behind Maryhill Museum, was prescient as a founding father of this new Pacific Rim economy. Soon, the region would be sprouting data centers, attracted by all the nearby hydropower. Bitcoin miners would take their place alongside Google, Facebook and Amazon. The dams would power them all.
The good roads, thanks to Sam Hill, had led to pride of place, and to those freeways starting with Eisenhower. A giant interstate economy based on trucking would soon materialize.
Portland, Oregon, a planned city (not unlike Washington, DC) and a hub for urban planning, as a profession, was later to become a “Capital of Open Source” according to Christian Science Monitor. As such, it became something of a mecca for visionaries.
“Open Source” was but the tip of an iceberg for a huge network of memes, a set of subcultures, a set of lifestyles. Computer programming, now integral with movie-making, was greatly in demand within Hollywood. The Silicon Valley (the Bay Area) and the Silicon Forest (Portland and Seattle) had become hubs of high technology.
The last puzzle piece is education and training. Where should you go if you’re into acting? How about if you’re into programming? Teaching? What capitals are most attractive? In what directions (along what vectors) do the brains drain? “Brain drain” is an alliterative idiom from the regional planning community. Do we expect an influx of eager engineers? Or an outflux? Steady state?
What does teaching have to do with movie-making? What does either have to do with Martians invading? This would be where my Martian Math comes in, a product of the Silicon Forest. Portland is a de facto capital, for Digital Math more generally. Stay tuned. Watch my Youtubes?