Quick anarchist update: I’m still not one, and I’m still reading.
But I had a thought the other day, when I was typing something too slowly into Google, and it started suggesting things I might be about to search for.
It does that now, Google. While you’re typing, it’ll give you a drop-down list of popular things you might be planning to look for, and start a pre-emptive search for you. Type the name “Justin”, and you won’t need to press Enter or carry on your search, if it was Bieber or Timberlake you were after. The letter “f” is all you need to be given a link to Facebook’s login page.
This sometimes provides an interesting snapshot of what’s popular online, and what people think or want to find out.
There are some things that really aren’t popular on the internet, and some which don’t seem to have as bad a rap as you might think.
Hitler was a good atheist socialist man woman? Snakes are cute? Infanticide is OK? Well, it’s the internet. There’ll always be people being contrary for the sake of it. The end result is inevitably ambivalent on many things, and never wholly damning.
Well, almost never.
It’s a cliché that nobody likes politicians, but it’s one of those clichés which got there for a reason. The vitriol applies across the political board:
Obviously this is a long, long way from qualifying as research into people’s opinions, but it shouldn’t be surprising if this does provide a coarse summary of how a lot of people feel.
But if they’re really that widely despised, the idea that we don’t actually need these things, at least in their current form, deserves more of a public airing and a more serious consideration. The idea of doing without them shouldn’t be a laughable concept, or something we consign automatically to an imaginary alternate universe.
We’re working pretty damn hard on eliminating cancer, after all.
Oh, and I should mention that there was one other category I found, whose unscientific Google predictive opinion was perhaps even less favourable than politicians’: