Facebook Brings Us Bread and Circuses

If Zuckerberg has anything to say about it, Facebook will soon usher the world out of the universe and into the metaverse. Why not? This punk, mid-thirties child has already dragged truth into the alley of disrepute, beaten it into submission and thrown it back out to the social mob he created.

And, of course Zuck has everything to say about it, because he has complete and unfettered control of the largest social-media platform the world has ever known.

Abraham Lincoln said, “if you want to know the character of a man, give him power.” I have seen Zuckerberg’s character and am unimpressed. Yes, he is among the world’s richest men, but wealth is a lesser indicator of character than power. Any idiot can become rich, and many have.

Lincoln didn’t speculate on what happens when you give power to a child. But we are witnesses to that today, as we watch a child grab the keys to the family car.

Defining ‘Bread and Circuses’

Gotta reach back a bit here into the history books and dial up the fall of the Roman empire. From Wikipedia:

This phrase originates from Rome in Satire X of the Roman satirical poet Juvenal (c. CE 100). In context, the Latin panem et circenses (bread and circuses) identifies the only remaining interest of a Roman populace which no longer cares for its historical birthright of political involvement. Here Juvenal displays his contempt for the declining heroism of contemporary Romans, using a range of different themes including lust for power and desire for old age to illustrate his argument. Roman politicians passed laws in 140 CE to keep the votes of poorer citizens, by introducing a grain dole: giving out cheap food and entertainment, “bread and circuses”, became the most effective way to rise to power.

“… Already long ago, from when we sold our vote to no man, the People have abdicated our duties; for the People who once upon a time handed out military command, high civil office, legions — everything, now restrains itself and anxiously hopes for just two things: bread and circuses.”

The child Zuckerberg brings us the modern version

In this modern iteration, Zuck takes the bread and leaves us the metaverse, his version of circuses. There will be a great deal of bread as he cashes in on the final degradation of American society. A diversion from reality is what we need when reality becomes too onerous, so take a peek at what’s in store…

Facebook will create a product team to work on the “metaverse,” a concept that involves creating digital worlds that multiple people can inhabit at the same time. The metaverse team will be part of Facebook’s virtual reality group, Reality Labs, executive Andrew Bosworth said in a Facebook post on Monday.

Today Portal and Oculus can teleport you into a room with another person, regardless of physical distance, or to new virtual worlds and experiences,” Bosworth wrote. “But to achieve our full vision of the Metaverse, we also need to build the connective tissue between these spaces — so you can remove the limitations of physics and move between them with the same ease as moving from one room in your home to the next.”

Just what I’ve been waiting for, removing the limitations of physics

Personally, I’m a big fan of entertainment and if I have to get around E=mc2 to do it, I’m game. I once wrote a novel titled EVOKE that speculated on a kinda cool brain implant. Long story short, you actually experienced such stuff as winning the Masters, having a great meal in Paris or getting laid (there was a limit on the getting laid part or no one would move on to the Masters). You didn’t watch it with a headset, you experienced it.

Maybe that’s why I’m so cautious about what the punk kid is up to. In my book, it came close to destroying both politics and society.

But nobody’s been able to stop the man-child when he throws a fit at the candy counter, not the U.S. Congress or the European Union. We can’t even get Facebook to pay taxes but, hell, we can’t get any of the tech guys to do that.

See y’all in the future…


Image Credit: paudal.com

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