Source – totalrehash.com
– “…In his manifesto, Kaczynski justified his bombings as a wake-up call that the advancements of technologies were and would continue to rob humans of their basic freedoms and dignity that “require large-scale organization.” It may appear that some of Kaczynski’s predictions have come true”
Was the Unabomber Right? Four Ted Kaczynski’s Predictions Come True
Ted Kaczynski, dubbed the Unabomber after sending a series of mail bombs to university and airline officials evaded the FBI for over 18 years until his captured and arrest in 1996.
It is possible that many of his predictions made within his personal manifesto are unfolding. Some people are pointing to those eerie doomsday predictions about how technology will rob humans of freedoms and personal dignity, not to mention privacy and the harmful psychology behind ideologies, especially political correctness.
Certainly, his manifesto doesn’t justify his killing and acts of terrorism. Still, it’s difficult to ignore how some of his predictions appear to be manifesting in the current world.
#1 Dependency and Breakdown of the System
Kaczynski wrote, “If the [technological] system breaks down the consequences will still be very painful. But the bigger the system grows the more disastrous the results of its breakdown will be, so if it is to break down it had best break down sooner rather than later.” (1)
Today’s world depends on technology for nearly every aspect of business, services, infrastructure and communication. If that system breaks down then the world will come a swift halt. Many predict that it would be chaos, war, famine, disease and the fall of the human race.
#2 Modern Leftism
Kaczynski’s manifesto discussed modern leftism, defining it not as a philosophical view, but a psychological type. He defined modern leftism as having advanced beyond its previous incarnation of socialism.
He concludes that modern leftism is “fragmented and it is not clear who can properly be called a leftist. When we speak of leftists in this article we have in mind mainly socialists, collectivists, ‘politically correct’ types, feminists, gay and disability activists, animal rights activists and the like.”
At first examination, it appears that some of Kaczynski’s definition of modern leftism might have been revealed during the 2016 Presidential election. The resistance to the leftist ideology of “political correctness” did indeed manifest into a wave of defiance against it across America.
#3 Political Correctness
Kaczynski discussed who and what political correctness was. He wrote:“Political correctness has its stronghold among university professors, who have secure employment with comfortable salaries, and the majority of whom are heterosexual white males from middle- to upper-middle-class families.”
In October 2016, NYU Liberal studies prof Michael Rectenwald who’d fought against political correctness and student coddling was placed on “paid leave for the rest of the semester.”
His colleagues complained about his tweets, that argued against the college campus trends of “safe spaces, trigger warnings, policing Halloween costumes and other aspects of academia’s growing PC culture.”
His fellow professors “complained about his ‘incivility’.” (2)
#4 Abnormal Societal Conditions
In his manifesto, Kaczynski wrote:
“Among the abnormal conditions present in modern industrial society are excessive density of population, isolation of man from nature, excessive rapidity of social change and the breakdown of natural small-scale communities such as the extended family, the village or the tribe.”
All of these conditions can be found in modern society. In fact, one cause for isolation is technology. Not only has it separated humans from nature, but more importantly, from each other.
According to a 2014 article in The Daily Universe citing a recent study, “Most children and teens spend 75 percent of their waking lives with their eyes fixed on a screen.”
And perhaps the most disturbing part of the study was the reveal that, “students who unplugged their electronic devices for one 24-hour period felt extremely lonely and didn’t know how to fill their time.” (3)
Who Was the Unabomber?
Just who was Ted Kaczynski? He was a child prodigy who entered Harvard University at age 16, graduated, and went on to earn a doctorate in mathematics at the age of 25.
He served as an assistant professor at the University of California, Berkeley, but quit two years later. He retreated to a cabin in Lincoln, Montana where he lived completely off the grid.
He became a survivalist until real estate development began to encroach on his wilderness. This was the turning point and he decided to seek revenge on the industrial world (4).
Unabomber’s Targets and Manifesto
Kaczynski first targeted university officials with homemade bombs sent through the mail, and eventually targeted airline officials and an American Airlines Boeing 727. He murdered three people and injured 24. He was named Unabomber after the university and airline bombings, but the three people he killed were not involved in these industries.
Kaczynski murdered Hugh Scrutton, a computer store owner (1985), Thomas Mosser, an advertising executive (1994) and Gilbert Murray, President of California Forestry Association (1995). (5)
The FBI hunted him for nearly two decades, finally arresting him in April 1996. The arrest came after his manifesto Industrial Society and Its Future was published in 1995 and read by his brother and sister-in-law who immediately recognized his writing style and his anti-technology sentiments about modern society.
In his manifesto, Kaczynski justified his bombings as a wake-up call that the advancements of technologies were and would continue to rob humans of their basic freedoms and dignity that “require large-scale organization.”
It may appear that some of Kaczynski’s predictions have come true. If so, is there a realistic course correction for society? What remedy could there be for technology, that is now such an intricate part of daily life?
References & Image Credits:
(1) Unabomber Manifesto
(2) NYU Professor PC Culture
(3) Technology Making Kids Anti Social
(4) Ted Kaczynski Wikipedia
(5) Unabomber Shares Story