Showroom Dummies

If modern man, with his off-the-rack suit and pre-fabricated corporate environment, is little more than an anonymous mannequin representing the material aspirations of the Western way of life, then to what end have we even bothered with all of our industry and progress? If modern life is so spiritually kaput, why do we keep grinding the wheels of technology? It’s so we can acquire collectively agreed-upon symbols of achievement and use them in substitution for insight, connection and personal growth. And in the evening we can go dance to electronic music. See, Kraftwerk asks the deep questions and makes the deep statements. The commentary made on the postwar condition of 1977 is no less relevant, except now we also have to deal with the newfangled snake-oil business of commodified identity and 15-minutes-of-wellness spiritual conformity. Yeah, it’s pretty bleak out there for people who value creativity and self expression for their own sake rather than as a branding exercise. Is it a fair trade-off for the magic of penicillin and airline travel? Are we aching to return to times when lives were presumably more meaningful for being shorter and more brutish? Nah. Modern life offers us the entirety of the world’s knowledge at our fingertips and the luxury of not dying of dysentery. Our desire to complain about our own moral and spiritual bankruptcy is its own form of posturing.

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