The greatest problem plaguing mankind in the next decade will be sleep-loss. For a variety of reasons, sleeplessness will become an epidemic, comparable to the current epidemic of obesity. The average American will get less than 4 hours of sleep per night, many getting as little as one or two hours.

The results of this will be poor concentration, exhaustion, and, in the worst cases, hallucinations and psychotic episodes. Some will try to treat sleeplessness with amphetamines, to disastrous effects; the current explosion of amphetamine usage will skyrocket, as will the social problems associated with the drug.

Sleep will become so precious that people will be found non-guilty when they murder those who wake them, and unscrupulous snake-oil salesmen will offer miracle cures that make them millionaires but cure nothing. This era will last a decade or more, and then will pass, and will be remembered by history as “The Bad Dream Time.”

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