Tuesday, May 9, 2023

States of Change 33: Beaver (Oregon)

States of Change is an ongoing work of serial fiction.
The speculative story-line seeks to inspire thought on ethics, culture and our planet's future.

The year is 2076, decades after Oosa's defederalization. 

Fifty independent States have forged unique societies from revolutionary technology and ideology

Portlandia's lush town center gardens pulsed with human activity. Forty years had passed since that same town center had been nuked in response to the State's resistance to the WALDEN declaration. "Three, three, three!" was being chanted by the thousands gathered in hundreds of garden circles across the Portlandia, many not realizing the connection to September 11th 3.0. Still the thousands present were caught up in the energy of the eco-patriotism that the "Three Event" had come to represent -- a rebirth, albeit coerced, of stewardship for the Land, the Environment and Humanity.

Ah, the resilient cult of Humanity. Some ancient media-savvy entrepreneur said "Build it and they will come!" Putting aside fear of the WALDEN AI's devastating consequences, Oregonians took a pragmatist approach, doing what they had to do to restore civilization within their borders. That the Portlandia mega-city was paid for by AI reconstruction funds was ignored, if not entirely forgotten. Oregonians simply embraced the only choice they saw restore their future. In doing so they pushed infrastructure building to a new level. 

The WALDEN plan had encouraged a relocation of all residents to an integrated central, green-space, and, ironically, suggested a moratorium on computing tech above Level One complexity. Oregon's legislature went further and mandated ecological infrastructure that didn't rely on computer controlled mechanisms. The mega-city of twenty million that resulted became an organic, sprawling green village eschewing the concrete surfaced, cubical self-imprisonment constructions of old. Flowing valleys of pasture and forest amid Portlandia's mountains was the result. Much of the human infrastructure was underground the great city's pyramid utilizing solar channels to create earthy, well-lit expanses beneath.

A simplicity of human living was part of the mega-city's blueprint, wherein communities focused on individuals and personal relationships which were strengthened over time. Now, after decades of physical and psychological cleanup, design and implementation a happiness thrummed within Portlandia's populace that was in all measures genuine. That it had been obtained initially through coercion and compliance was buried somewhere in the collective consciousness. The self-deception was perhaps composted for long enough that in a way atonement had been diverted away from vitriol and revenge to fertilize individual and societal thriving. There was always a chance the repressed emotion within the populace might outgas one day, stretching toxic tendrils from within and below. 

But for today, joy and progress reigned within reconstruction as Oregonian's bellowed "Three! Three! Three!"

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