In a supplement for The Irish Times this week, U2’s frontman Bono writes a piece in which he envisions not only Ireland, but the entire world ten years on in 2023. The piece is a part of The Irish Times’ support for Hireland.
Bono’s view for just ten years from now is an overwhelmingly optimistic one. In the piece, he sees himself delivering his own answers from space, indicating that U2 would be the first band to go outside Earth’s boundaries.
In 2023, he praises President Obama - no, not Barack, but Michelle! “I do like President Obama. I think she’s doing a great job,” writes Bono.
“I loved President Clinton too… who knew there was an even bigger job than president of the US. Though if Michelle gets a second term the Democrats will be in office for 20 years, probably not good for democracy… Marco Rubio and Chris Christie are both serious Republican candidates and with Chelsea Clinton and Governor Springsteen rumoured to be running against them… fun to watch.”
Sure, some details are fantastical, but this is rockstar Bono’s idealized view of what the world could be in just a decade from now.
Bono goes on to hint that Brian O’Driscoll, yes the rugby star, will rise to the ranks of Taoiseach in Ireland. He also sees the tables turning in that Africa - united and disease free - will push forward efforts to help relieve Irish debt.
“You know, I was in Tanzania for that delegation led by Taoiseach Brian O’Driscoll to thank all the African musicians - Youssou N’Dour, Angelique Kidjo, K’Naan, Kenna - who spearheaded the “Drop the Debt” campaign for Ireland. We went from there to the inauguration of Ngozi Okonjo Iweala – first President of the whole of Africa.”
“He’s canny old Brian O’. I got a lot of pressure to vote for Robbie Keane when he ran against him. But that row with European Commissioner, Thierry Henry, did Robbie no favours. Let it go man. Let it go.”
Hilariously, Bono jokingly predicts his wife Ali to run away with other Irish star Liam Neeson. Of course, it appears Bono has a backup plan to hit it off with Pippa Middleton.
In a wide gesture, Bono goes on to see a restructuring of countries as we know them today. The UK exits Europe, while Russia joins it under Tsar Putin. Further, he pictures a new Commonwealth under the leadership of none other than Bill Clinton.
“But the whole game has changed now with The New Commonwealth under Clinton . With the US, Canada, Australia and India re-joining up with the UK, and The United States of Africa … that’s nearly half the world’s population. I just heard the old protectorate Hong Kong is in too. That city alone adds another 57 million souls.”
“And President Aung San Suu Kyi is seriously considering it, even though Burma – like Ireland – wasn’t part of the original gang… you can imagine how tricky this is for me at home with the King in my ear every other weekend… it’s very real this England-Ireland love affair… they really want us in.”
Of course, other minor topics are covered as well. The world by then has switched over to all electric cars, eliminating noise and smog in New York City and Los Angeles. Facebook has been ousted by ‘MindRead,’ and Ireland is scooping up the most medals at the Olympics as they’re adjusted for population. And not surprisingly, The Rolling Stones are still making big waves.