HOUSTON,TX – All the hubbub about the government’s spying on us online and listening to our phone calls has meant big trouble for sneaky leaker Edward Snowden and the White House. But it’s meant big business for author George Orwell.
See – with all this ‘Big Brother’ buzz in the air, folks have been rushing back in droves to read (or re-read) Orwell’s tyranical masterpiece “1984.” This week, Amazon sales for the book went up almost 6000 percent! Too bad Orwell’s been dead 60-plus years or the dude would be bankin’!
Here in town, at Half-Price Books in Montrose, assistant manager Tracy Macura says sales of the book are always pretty swift, “Even before the big scandal hit, this is just one of those books we could never get enough of. I mean– we get it in, and it’s usually gone within a couple of days. And it’s been that way the 15 years I’ve worked here.
Got to wonder, though– how does a novel released 64 years ago this week have any relevancy today?
Gene White, who admits he’s wary of government intrusion, has an explanation, “When the government starts having complete control to do whatever they want without any kind of checks or balances, then you start creating this kind of Big Brother scenario where they can watch every move of yours, get every little piece of information they want about you and then use it against you in any way they want.”
David Roemer agrees, “It just seems like a big waste of time and money to me. They could probably catch more terrorists if they enforced the borders.”
Orwell, who wrote the book while battling tuberculosis, said it was meant as a parody of the future, not a criticism of current government. In it, one character says to another: “If you want a vision of the future… imagine a boot stamping on a human face forever.”
For those who believe we’re already there, the author offered these words:
“Don’t let it happen. It depends on you.”