For Interview magazine's optimistically-named 'Ask a Sane Person' section, I spoke to the excellent Christopher Bollen for the mother of all pandemic interviews. Christopher asked me for my 'worst case scenario'. Personally I think I was very restrained.
INTERVIEW: What is the worst-case scenario for the future?
KUNZRU: The U.S. becomes an autocracy, and devolves into a weak and fractious patchwork of jurisdictions run by more or less rapacious oligarchs who conduct a losing war with China, first cold then hot. Human rights become a quaint idea. The environment collapses, and the resulting massive migrations of people lead to vicious authoritarian regimes taking control in richer countries. Genocidal wars are fought over water. The Tibetan plateau is a global flashpoint. New pathogens emerge out of the melting permafrost, killing millions. Life becomes hellish for all but the very wealthy. For the masses, the future looks like an insect world of starvation or highly-surveilled shock work; for the few, a melancholy decadence conducted behind high walls. I always thought the shit would go down when I was young and strong. These days I’m just hoping I won’t spend my old age picking through the ruins of my city looking for expired canned food.