First it was very simple: I dreamed I had a brand new (bright yellow) power cord that had developed numerous cracks in the insulation. I had no idea what had caused the cracks. Clearly, it wasn’t that somebody hit it with a power saw (a not unheard of accident on a construction job) since it wasn’t little notches such as what a saw blade leaves. Somebody had the receipt to it so I took it back where it had been bought, which was Montgomery Ward. (There used to be a huge, multi-story M.W. store near me here in Oakland. You could buy absolutely everything there except food – from tools to clothes to appliances. When it closed down, hundreds of people here in Oakland lost their jobs.) As I was standing there in the return department it suddenly became clear to me what had happened. In my dream I saw it again: There had been some weird sort of electrical storm. Or rather, I was seeing it again. Everything was twisting around. The aluminum frame entry way doors were twisting violently, actually bending 180 degrees. Strangely, the glass did not shatter but twisted with it. The whole thing left no physical trace, except that all electric motors/power tools immediately stopped functioning.
Then I saw this storm again. This time it was from the point of view of being on a sailboat on the ocean and this time all the boat’s electronics immediately were fried. Even the boat’s compass stopped functioning. It just wandered around aimlessly. A passenger ship in the distance was floating around, dead in the water. I realized we were going to immediately have to figure out how to navigate by the stars. Of course, the entire ship full of passengers plus the crew were doomed. Hundreds, possibly thousands of them were doomed.
This violent electrical/electronic storm had happened all around the world.
(Imagine what would happen if the entire human population lost all use of electricity and electronics.)
I woke up and started thinking about my dream. I am a believer in what Freud said – that all dreams are a product of something that happened the day immediately before. So I lay there in the bed and just free associated. What immediately came into my mind was a discussion I’d had with a few friends/comrades yesterday. Among other things, we were talking about global climate change. I had commented that I believe in order to end the use of fossil fuel (which I believe is necessary if we and our planet are to avoid a dreadful fate), we will have to reduce our total energy consumption. Whether that is possible with the total human population that presently exists without also drastically reducing our standard of living to an unacceptable level is an open question in my mind. As Covid is showing, it is also a matter of reversing wild habitat destruction. This means that either we will achieve genuine socialism in short order and reduce the human footprint in a planned way, or nature will do it for us in an unplanned way that will entail unimaginable suffering, not only of humans but of nearly every other species.