Wednesday, September 26, 2007

thought experiment

I have to work the night shift tonight, from midnight to 7am. This will undoubtedly give me way too much time to be alone with my thoughts.

And in the spirit of being alone with one's thoughts, here is a thought experiment I keep coming back to. What would the world be like if it were inhabited entirely by people who are exactly like you? Okay, maybe they don't all look quite like you, and there are still two genders, but personality-wise everyone is like you.

I think my world would be very peaceful. I also think everyone would starve after a while because people wouldn't really know how to go about getting food. Clothing would be optional. "Bad words" wouldn't be forbidden. There would probably be a lot of books around, but nobody would have the technical skill or insight to create a printing press, so any book written would likely be the only copy. Religion would be a lot more abstract and philosophical. Nobody would get Adam Sandler. Or Krzysztof Kieslowski movies. Or Metallica. Or Tom Delay. (Let's ignore the paradox). If technology got as far as TV, it would mostly play cartoons.

It would be an OK world, I think, but probably not one I would want to live in.


rjamm said...

A world full of Rosemarys would be awesome!

I can do anything, so most of our technology would remain.

I believe in preserving the environment, so the world wouldn't be fucked.

If I ever made many billions of dollars, I'd give away all but a few billion of it like Warren Buffet. I'd still keep a little since I am a packrat.

Garbage dumps would be surprisingly empty, also since I am a packrat.

I would pay people $30 and hour to wash toilets (kind of like how I overcompensated people to clean toilets when I was workshift manager because that job is icky). I would suck it up and pay more for basic services as a result.

There wouldn't be sweatshops.

Old people would be treated nicer.

Universal health care.

A cure for cystic fibrosis, since that would become an extremely high priority in society.

We would take down the corn lobby. No more high fructose corn syrup! Yay!
Food in general would be a lot better.

Tetris Attack would be an Olympic sport.

And now for a few trivial downsides:

Art would suffer horribly.

Primary colors would dominate the world.

Camping might become a thing of the past.

There would be so many cartoons on tv that I wouldn't be able to watch them all.

We'd all be pretty competitive.

We probably wouldn't smell as nice as the world does now. It'd be hairier too.

Overall, I'd be willing to take those losses. Bring on the new, Rosemary-populated world!

Steven said...

But there'd need to be one Steven per Rosemary, or the Rosemarys would get lonely.

Steven said...

I think a Steven-populated world would be great, except we'd all die out because no one would have the courage to ask someone else out on a date.

rjamm said...

So cuuuuuuute!!!!