"By 2000, the machines will be producing so much that everyone in the U.S. will, in effect, be independently wealthy. With Government benefits, even nonworking families will have, by one estimate, an annual income of $30,000-$40,000 (in 1966 dollars). How to use leisure meaningfully will be a major problem, and Herman Kahn foresees a pleasure-oriented society full of 'wholesome degeneracy.'"
The entire article from the February 25, 1966 issue of TIME can be read here.
For the record, $40,000 in 1966 dollars is the equivalent of just under $250,000 in 2007 dollars, according to the Inflation Calculator.
The Motorola television ads below ran in Life magazine and The Saturday Evening Post from 1961 until 1963. These, along with other print ads from the Golden Age of Television can be found in the book Window to the Future by Steve Kosareff. The illustrations posted here are all by Charles Schridde.
The illustrations all have a very clean look. The TV is obviously quite prominently displayed and people seem to be enjoying themselves. The boy in the aquarium intrigues me the most. Is he so enthralled by television that he can't stay away from it long enough to enjoy swimming in the futuristic pool attached to his house?
A friend of mine contends that jet packs were the Segways of the 20th century. They promised to change the way that people traveled but were really just a novelty. I must confess that I find Segways fun, (no matter how nerdy I might look), and would love to try a jet pack if given the chance.
On second thought, I might let Buck Rogers have all the fun for now.
The September 5, 1968 New York Times had a book review titled, "The Fearless Futurist," about Amaury de Riencourt and his book, The American Empire. Riencourt's vision for the future may not seem altogether revolutionary for modern readers but I guess his was the most desired option in the Cold War-era world.
The journalist writes about Riencourt:
"All moaning doomsters to the contrary notwithstanding, the world is quite likely to go on. And as he sees it, the United States and the Soviet Union are one day going to run it fairly peaceably as something like twin-governesses, I gather, to the fractious children of the earth."
If you have a TimesSelect subscription you can read the entire article here.
The future is full of robots, specializing in cutting hair, shaving, teaching humans to dance, and otherwise perfecting humanity. All's Fair at the Fair offers that special brand of optimism I imagine the world needed in 1938. We will explore the real-life versions of the paleo-futuristic World's Fairs in future posts. Check out the short cartoon here.
I found the book Do You Remember Technology? at a used bookstore this weekend. It included this Science and Mechanics cover from the December, 1950 issue. Flying saucer buses? Maybe not the most practical cover for, "The Magazine That Shows You How," but certainly paleo-futuristic.