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Whether Permitting
It is not my habit to make New Year’s predictions, but I’m thinking of making it one. To that end, I am declaring 2017 as the Year of Do It Yourself. I hereby forecast that the DIY spirit will reign over almost every facet of our lives this year.

Especially politics. Whatever you say about Drump (“hornswoggler” was recently added to the list of options, along with “feculent”), you have to credit him with being the ultimate DIY candidate. Like any good do-it-yourselfer, he didn’t follow the instructions. And yet he got elected! All that remains is for his project to fail horribly (not that I’m rooting for that, understand, unless he’s standing under it when it collapses). Now that he’s done it, anyone who’s willing to spew the stupid and cruel can be President.

In the world of journalism we’re already halfway there on DIY news. Now we can eliminate “reporters” and just make it up ourselves. If you’re a newcomer, here’s the technique: think of something you want to have happen, then imagine an “event” or set of “facts” that would make it more likely. Write about your imaginary reality on Facebook. It goes viral, and that’s it — you’re writing the first draft of history!

Speaking of alternate realities, why not just live in one all by yourself? New advances in virtual reality have put us on the cusp of living endlessly exciting and fulfilling lives without any of the risk or expense. While it is true that actual reality itself is kind of a DIY opportunity, why should we have to settle for some grinding, humdrum existence when we can go anywhere, be anybody, and kill anyone we want over and over again? It’s a life ripe for the living — as long as Mom keeps supplying the pepperoni pizza and Mountain Dew.

Our new digital world, in fact, makes DIY possibilities of all kinds more likely. Want your own air force? Buy a drone. Now buy another one. Keep it up, and pretty soon your neighbor won’t dare park his big, stupid SUV in front of your house.

While the DIY theme will dominate the year, it should be noted that a strong countervailing trend will also continue. Let’s call it the Don’t Do It Yourself craze. DDIY is also driven by technology, mostly of the robotic variety. Self-motivating vacuum cleaners and self-driving cars will soon be followed by self-shooting guns and self-taking selfies.

The new DIY journalism we mentioned will be nicely complemented by the DDIY fad. Consumers of news will not check their sources even more in 2017 and continue not exercising common sense nor using simple powers of deduction. Heavy reliance will be placed on stories that are self-fact-checked and self-skepticized.

In a final example of a paradox, wrapped in an irony, sweater-vested in an incongruity, we will see “reality” TV be converted to 100% CGI using the latest in motion-capture systems. Those systems will be fitted to robots that have been programmed to move more realistically than real people. The result: we won’t have to witness the dehumanizing effects of these shows on actual humans. Maybe we can get somebody else to watch this stuff, too.

I am tempted to make a projection, based on all these trends, regarding the future of humanity itself, but I’ll have to get back to you on that. I haven’t decided yet whether to DIM or DDIM.
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No "new normal" for me, this shit ain't normal.
~ MS, Truckee