Psycho-adaptive Chamber


Joined November 2007

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Artist's Description

In the days before electronic media religion was the opiate of the masses. Then came radio, television, state sponsored lotteries and sport to ensure that the general public was distracted enough to fail to notice what was really happening.

In the first years of the 21st century a combination of the cult of the celebrity, which elevated individuals who had few or no skills that could enable them to contribute to society to fame and the media filled most of the available space following these strange people, and the internet (a primitive social communication/information sharing network) distracted the people from the decaying environment, official corruption and rule by the military-industrial complex.

The collapse of the Earth’s biosphere led to the contsruction of arcologies, at first to protect the wealthy and connected from the toxic atmosphere and violent weather patterns, and later cheaper versions to house the masses. The new opiate of these refugee masses became Stimsense Implants, or SI’s, which plugged directly into the brain and in addition to delivering banal entertainments also controlled brain wave patterns to ensure they remained docile and politically, economically and socially neutered. A very small percentage of people resisted, as is the case in every generation. The implants did not prevent crime or civil disobedience completely, but with no room for incarcerative facilities (gaols) a new punishment was needed.

From the 20th century on humans became sponges for information. Their attention spans and cognitive abilities reduced considerably. People became addicted to information and electronic entertainment. The first victims were anaesthetized by online games like the now infamous World of Warcraft, EverQuest and similar commercially administered sedatives. Later others developed addictions to blogging (a form of online personal diary made publicly available), “news feeds” and other products. SI was even more addictive.

It was discovered that the ideal punishment for criminals, social malcontents and sociopaths of every sort was to place them into sensory deprivation devices. These devices were called Psycho-adaptive Chambers, or PAC’s. A state employee who ran these devices was called a Pacman, ironically named for one of the earliest video games. Anything from only a few hours to a few days in one of these chambers had a 96% success rate in ensuring the re-offence did not occur.

Or it could be a boiler to run the pumps for the Melbourne sewerage system constructed in the late 19th century.

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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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