If a mad scientist wanted to give me a chip that would allow me to read the minds of people I’m talking to, on the condition that I can’t ever turn it off, I don’t think it would be a good idea to accept it. I’ve been thinking about this for a while. Has anyone ever noticed that on shows like “I Dream Of Jeannie” and “Bewitched”, where there are characters who are capable of magic, none of the good characters deliberately try to read people’s minds, or to give others that ability? Only nasty characters, such as Jeannie’s sister and Endora, ever want to do anything like that. The good genies and witches always read minds, or give that ability to others, only as an unintended result of accidents, allergies and other misfortunes. I have always thought that’s the way it should be. If someone could read others’ minds, he would absolutely invariably end up getting his feelings hurt sooner or later. Besides that he would also end up hearing things that are none of his business. There would be no such thing as a surprise party anymore. A few years ago there were a lot of commercials on television advertising for a product that allowed people to hear things others were saying from far away. They gave the impression that people always gave each other flattering compliments. That’s most certainly not true though. Much of the feedback each of us gets from others is quite entirely unwelcome. If someone could find out what others are thinking he would inevitably interpret it entirely out of context. Privacy would be a thing of the past. Liberals, and other totalitarian ideologues, are always pushing for such supposedly wonderful utopian ideas in order to affect some imagined Great Society. Often I’ve seen commercials for surveillance devices that permit people to eavesdrop on their houses while they’re away from home, leaving other family members or roommates absolutely without any privacy whatsoever. Nothing like that ever works out though. The ability to read minds would just be yet another poisonous Pandora’s box.