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  • Writer's pictureRitwic Singh

Henry Ford: Messiah or Prophet?

Henry Ford is a classic futurist, a man who could see current socio-economic and political patterns and provide an absolute direction in which they currently seem to be heading in. Ford painted an accurate and uncanny projection of his future and our past and present. His wonder at the speed at which technology was being developed in his life and optimism and belief in the future of mankind was inspiring.

The first Nostradamus like prophecy he told was about the decrease in housework and the stress due to it on the wife. Inventions like vacuum, washing machines and refrigerators will lead to a more comfortable and peaceful life, even though they were considered a luxury at the time Ford was writing this article. His understanding of the way generations adapt a different lifestyle to their predecessors and the benefits that it brings to civilization and its evolution could only be made by a man who is a deep thinker. Henry Ford reached out to all the thinkers of their respective generations and instructed them to understand the responsibility they hold to their fellow citizens and to take pride in the work that they do for them.

Another bone-chilling prediction that Ford made was about the extinction of the ‘poor’ farmer. Capitalism roared through America in the 20th century and with it came the rise of the Goliaths. Especially in the agricultural sector, all the small farmers were bought out of their land and were nudged to transition to other industries to help further the economy. This wave of land absorption led to a huge rise in the economy as more people who were farmers before, living in desolate places, first started to indulge in capitalism and understand its addictive benefits to both the working man as well as the national economy.

Henry also found hope in the fact that during the last fifty years of his life, the average human life had doubled, which was a drastic improvement. This led to a generation of believers who maintained optimism in the future and faced every problem with confidence and intent. His predictions of mankind beyond the 20th century were accurate and intelligently analyzed. The reason for him to broadcast his trust in the next generation was rooted in the ridicule of the lifestyle of the youth by the more conservative man. This pattern has only continued since then and though it is milder now, the consensus distrust in the next generation still remains.

Ford also pointed out the benefits of prohibiting liquor in all the states and forcing the new generation to spend time in better places than the saloons, wasting their days helplessly under the influence and addiction of alcohol. He believed that since the new generation will receive this break from the cycle of addiction and self-harm, they would be able to concentrate on extracurricular activities and help further enrich the economy which cycles the money back to the working man’s pocket, to maintain savings and live a stable life.

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