Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Happy birthday George

Today would have been George Orwell's 105th birthday.

1984 and Animal Farm were two books which greatly shaped my view of the world, and although it is true that 1984 could never really happen as it was written. That doesn't take away from the book. Many people have argued that the book is unbelievable because no society would allow that sort of government to come to power, but we've seen many fascist states rise since this book was written. Even our own government here in the US has taken many steps towards this type of government...and although it's true that "Big Brother" may not be watching all the time...he can now legally check in on you from time to time.

The simple fact that I am now typing the words "America as a fascist state" will guarantee that I get several hits to this blog from government sites. I know because I'm watching them!

1984, along with A Handmaid's Tale, and Revolt in 2100 were huge influences on my writing of The Opium of the People. Like 1984, the events in the book probably couldn't happen the way I wrote them, but as speculative fiction authors, we really aren't trying to predict the future. Instead, in many ways, we're trying to prevent the future...or at least futures that we think are dangerous...and the destruction of freedom is dangerous.

So Happy Birthday George, and it's a damn shame that more people haven't listened to your message...

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