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Mathematical Solutions for a Global Crisis

Mathematical Solutions for a Global Crisis

Mathematical Solutions for a Global Crisis: Good idea or no?

Due to the recent Albertan economic downturn, I’ve been reading a lot of industry reports that discuss reasons for the slump, things that companies should have done differently beforehand, and a plethora of ideas about how to fix things (many of which involve getting rid of the NDP government). I imagine that these same kinds of reports are repeated over and over throughout the world, written about all kinds of problems. World hunger, poverty, wars, violence, persecution: thousands of people have dedicated their lives to finding solutions just to the smallest aspect of these issues in the hopes that by fixing the small pieces of the puzzle first, the big calamity will eventually also be fixed.

Now we have a new suggestion that will fix all the crises, all at once. And it’s beautiful.

Jesse Jacobs has solved all our problems with a simple handbook on the progression of humanity in its race toward perfection. The process fits together just as well as the 3D puzzle on the mini-book’s cover page: at first it looks complicated, like it will never work, but then the solution becomes clearer and clearer—and seems simpler and simpler—as the puzzle comes together.

Such a simple solution...

Such a simple solution...

The premise is this: The governments of the world will legislate that humans must be half the size of their parents, exponentially, until we are microscopic, living the joyous life of human bacteria. Our problems will disappear as lack of resources—and therefore the fight for those resources—is no longer an issue. The smaller we get, the less we need, and the more there is for everyone.

As for the report comic itself, this simple solution is expressed in clear diagrams with a simple colour palette of shades of green and blue, in Jacobs’ signature style. The reader is reminded that the point of the whole exercise is to save the planet and, therefore, our lives and the lives of all who live here. Yellow highlights remind us that the sun is the source of all life—the source of the energy that will sustain us as we lead our microscopic lives. The process is described straightforwardly as well, in order to reach the greatest number of readers as possible. (Taking cues from presidential speeches, no doubt.)

As beautiful as this plan is, questions remain. If we are small enough to live amongst the microscopic organisms, how will it be possible to retain our basic body shapes, as depicted in the report? Or were those just vague representations meant to assuage the fears of the masses until it is too late to avoid become mindless, single-cell amoebans? Will someone develop minification science capable of shrinking our complicated bodies and brains to a size smaller than each of the cells that currently make up our bodies? Will the bacteria that live on us—and keep us alive and healthy—also be shrunk? Will clothes and art and iPods be shrunk?

Will we be bored to literal death if television reality shows don’t survive the minification? Or will we even care that we will no longer be able to root for the villain on Survivor?

The theoretical foundations of this plan are solid, but the details still need to be worked out. I hope there is a sequel.

Writer/Artist: Jesse Jacobs

Publisher: kuš! komiksi

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