The Impulse Society

Nov 12, 2014

Roberts says the marketplace and the self are merging in ways we've never before experienced.
Credit Anthony Quintano / Creative Commons

One of the biggest American myths is limitlessness. You'd think by now we'd understand our own limitations but the American myth - and you can hear it on Rush Limbaugh every day - is one where the horizon goes on forever and more growth is always possible and any failure from Vietnam to the 2008 crash that we've ever had is just a case of failing to fully exert our exceptional American qualities. 

Writer Paul Roberts, sees that myth, being wired up to a dangerous culture of impulse gratification where Amazon knows what kind of shower head you want - before you do and will send a drone to drop it on your doorstep before the words of your wish come out of your mouth. 

Roberts and I talk about the era of ready, fire, aim


  • Paul Roberts is the author of “The End of Oil,” “The End of Food,” and most recently, “The Impulse Society: America in the Age of Instant Gratification.” His writing has appeared in numerous publications including The New Republic and Rolling Stone.