Socialism Plus Electricity Plus Temperance Equals a Canadian Utopia


From In the new capital, or, The city of Ottawa in 1999

Socialism plus electricity plus temperance equals a Canadian Utopia.

This book published in 1897 imagines Canada in 1999 where alcohol and private property have been abolished and hydro-electricity has enabled a near utopia.

Skip ahead to the waking up in 1999 which begins on page 104 (pg. 95 of the text).

Highlights include:

Well, Baron, how is it that so many people have horseless carriages, and such pretty homes, yet they don't seem to labor much, and have so many holidays?" "That is easily explained. The great gift of electricity to us by nature assists in shortening our hours of labor, and is free to all now, but in the past it was legislated as a benefit to a few by the patent laws, and these patentees were protected by a law compelling the users to pay them their stated price, and only the rich could do it. As no monopolies or patent laws exist everybody is free to use any invention or apply it to his use. We respect foreign laws in patents, not to traffic in their patents, but may use them for private benefit, and as we have plenty of spare time we take a great pleasure of putting it in our homes and making a great study of it.
"In the past, money, which was spent in drinking habits and vice, is now spent in decorating the homes with statues, paintings, music and all results of modern arts.

pg. 118  (pg 127)

It is good to know bagpipes survive socialism.

“This is a wonderful age, but I would have thought that the great music by electricity would have super-seded the music of the bagpipes. Baron," said I.
Oh, no; you can't measure the Scotchman's love for the bag-pipes, or his ancient customs, yet he is very democratic in his ideas.

pg. 121