Thanks for speaking out. At OSCON (open source conference) the very first keynote urged the assembled software engineers to not collaborate with the concentration camp builders. She showed us an example of what we might do instead. Her app helps crowdfund keeping the old and sick connected to the municipal water supply. Yes, I know, it’s an inhumane system to begin with.

I agree with you that language matters, and using the word “fascism” more might keep us connected to history. Don’t imagine Americans are not fighting. The guy they shot for trying to set fire to ICE buses near Tacoma didn’t get much attention. Along those lines, the people being rounded up and detained and deported are Americans (from the Americas).

The very symbol of state rule since Roman times is the bundle of rods, the “fasces”. Congress is ornamented with exactly this icon. Manifest Destiny is neo-Roman imperialism in so many dimensions. The conquered peoples become slaves.

The Americans have become a conquered people in many ways, as their European heritage catches up to them. Pushing further west used to be a way to escape tyranny. Whole communities of Quakers would move to get away from slaver economies. But state bureaucracies have more than IBM Hollerith machines today, for keeping tabs.

The USA’s premier futurist for decades, Bucky Fuller, anticipated the demise of our constitutional democracy in the 1980s (income inequality was past the breaking point even then). He even had a positive spin for this development: humanity is emerging from a phase wherein we believe that nation states as we knew them, are here forever.

The large contiguous landmass jigsaw puzzle is dropping a lot of people through the cracks. Corporations, churches, universities, show up as networks, not jigsaw puzzle pieces. Citizens might log in from anywhere if the USA were more of an operating system in the cloud. Sounds like science fiction. Sounds like Amazon.

If we want the future to be less bleak, we need to reconnect with our American heritage, including its positive futurism. The mood today is things are going from bad to worse and there’s nothing we can do about it (another stat I learned at OSCON). People channel their rage and frustration into politics and mass media.

They need more time to imagine a future worth living for and creating. When do our screenwriters start sharing that? Hash tag “Asylum City” is my science fiction initiative.

Instead of detention centers and homeless camps, we create prototype towns and cities “of tomorrow” (Disney vibe). Ingenuity and engineering, not the shrill politics of fascism (and racism, and nationalism), is what Americans are more than ready for.

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