1984 has come and gone, but George Orwell's nightmarish vision in 1948 stands in my mind as, unfortunately, slightly possible. This anti-utopian novel is cautionary and serves as a warning against the dangers of high technology. In 1984, the Party perfected the use of technology to monitor the lives of its populace in order to insure loyalty through surveillance. Just the same, our government at the local and state levels have placed cameras at intersections to detect traffic offenders, and federal programs such as Carnivore enable the FBI to detect a computer user?s activities on-line. Through propaganda, the Party gives a one-sided message, emphasizing the good points of their position, and only the bad points of the opposing position. In America, I have no doubt that our government does not tell us everything and I accept this; a lot of times we are not in the right mind to have a say in governmental affairs.
The Party's most brilliant and most appalling project is the reformulation of archives so that they are consistent with current Party policy so as to brainwash minds that do not even realize changes being made. Similarly, we have allowed ourselves to mindlessly look towards television and magazines to set our mannerisms, standards, and aims for us. Despite the abilities our government has to become like the Party in 1984, I do not believe that controversial technology should be banned, no matter how much law enforcement tends to behave improperly, because I have faith in people like Winston who are smart enough to understand the insidious manipulation being perpetrated on their society, and because I think that as long as there are ideas and opinions, humankind will always aim for the better, and not devolve to the worse.