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Behold, the site of Bill Gates’s City of the Future! No, that’s not Mars. That’s 25,000 acres of barrel cactus and scorpions in the neighborhood of Tonopah, Arizona, about fifty miles from Phoenix. I suppose it seems a smart place for a city if you think water comes from iPhones, or that you don’t have to grow food anywhere near where people live, or that Happy Motoring will continue indefinitely by other means than gasoline. A lot of people believe these things — especially the “intellectuals-yet-idiots” beloved of Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of The Black Swan, Antifragile, and other books. Many of the people running things in America these days are exactly those intellectuals-yet idiots. They have no idea where this society is actually heading, only techno-narcissistic fantasies about a future of ever-more stuff materialized out of thin air (like the “money” issued by the Federal Reserve). Bill Gates has so much of this money, you wonder if he even knows what the managers, Cascade Investment LLC, and a real estate development outfit called Belmont Partners, are doing in his name. I predict that the $80 million so far given to this project will go up in a vapor and that nothing will ever be built here. Bill G can just write it off as a tax loss.

About James Howard Kunstler

View all posts by James Howard Kunstler
James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency and the four-book series of World Made By Hand novels, set in a post economic crash American future. His most recent book is Living in the Long Emergency; Global Crisis, the Failure of the Futurists, and the Early Adapters Who Are Showing Us the Way Forward. Jim lives on a homestead in Washington County, New. York, where he tends his garden and communes with his chickens.

7 Responses to “December 2017”

  1. malthuss December 4, 2017 at 12:31 pm #

    if you think water comes from iPhones,

    Robots do not need water and Apple has the Ip, not Czar Bill.

  2. jayrome December 4, 2017 at 4:12 pm #

    Correct me if I am wrong but. . . isn’t this where all the nuclear waste has been buried along with used Dioxin, obsolete pesticides and garbage from bio-weapons manufacturing ? ? ?
    As you can see that eventually Nature heals the land and all is good.

  3. whoisbiggles December 4, 2017 at 10:31 pm #

    Congratulations to the seller!

  4. ffkling December 6, 2017 at 3:04 am #

    ‘They have no idea where society is heading.”

    “They” know exactly the dystopian future that awaits us poor slobs. How else to explain BAU. How else to explain the multi-billion dollar enormous underground facilities still under construction. At one facility in the Ozark mountains of Missouri, so much tonnage of supplies is being off-loaded that a railroad spur was constructed right to the entrance that’s secured with self-sealing, 25’ wide, steel blast doors.

    Otherwise, TPTB would have already implemented a massive course correction. Instead, it’s damn the torpedoes full speed ahead toward the mass extinction abyss.

  5. SvrzoH December 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm #

    ‘Bugsy’ Siegel’s spirit, (apparently) is still alive.

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  6. bymitch December 6, 2017 at 10:00 pm #

    Towns and cities come about due to some human activity.
    Usually around a natural resource and/or a common transport route.
    In the photo there appears to be some trail cutting across the plain but very little else to suggest building something viable.
    Unless there is something, in moonshine made from barrel cactus, or deep fried scorpions, I wont be riding the 50 miles on my camel, from Phoenix, to visit anytime soon.

  7. Hospice Man January 2, 2018 at 12:42 pm #

    Lake Mead is evaporating due to lack of winter snows and overall population growth depending on it, and there will be neither electricity or water once the water level falls below the spill-point. Arizona is one of many states that depends on that water going over Hoover Dam for both. Forget this dumbass exurb-that-never-will-be. What is Phoenix or Flagstaff going to do when the water supply and electricity go the way of all flesh? And why on earth would somebody buy into a 100-mile-a-day commute from the desert after the 2008 collapse, when all such trips were rendered impossible once oil prices ballooned?

    On the other hand, I have family members who’ve bought real estate around Miami because ‘prices wont’ stay this low forever!’ It isn’t called ‘real estate’ once there’s three feet of water permanently parked on it.The stupid reaches all 50 states.