Martin Amis in Time’s Arrow on Deindustrialization in Reverse

In Time’s Arrow time is moving backwards.

“The parallaxes of the stockyards shift and quake. Industry is coming to the city. Gas is cheap. Things move faster than they used to. The insane have been taken off the street; we don’t ask where they’ve disappeared to. Never ask. It’s better if you never ask. No longer the nomads, the nightrunners . . . Instead there is a burly altruism abroad. People all have jobs now, at the steel mill and the auto plant. They wash the wind. Just as they clean up all the trash and litter, they also clean up the earth and the sky, transmogrifying cars, turning tools, parts, weapons, bolts, into carbon and iron. They’ve really got to grips with their environmental problems, facing them squarely, with common purpose. Time for talk is over. There is no talk. Just action. To total sickness you bring total cure. Now there’s less room for thought and for feeling, and it seems a great tiredness is good for keeping people steady. Work liberates: Friday evenings, as they move off toward it, how they laugh and shout and roll their shoulders.”

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