This essay has had a specific design in mind: It set out to expose the cunning and deceptive aspects of the word design. This it did because they are normally concealed. If it had pursued another design, it might, for example, have insisted on the fact that 'design' is related to 'sign': a sign of the times, a sign of things to come, a sign of membership. In that case, it would have given a differ- ent, but equally plausible, explanation of the word's contem- porary situation. That's the answer then: Everything depends on Design.
True, once the barrier between art and technology had been broken down, a new perspective opened up within which one could create more and more perfect designs, escape one's circum- stances more and more, live more and more artistically (beau- tifully). But the price we pay for this is the loss of truth and authenticity.
How can we explain this devaluation of all values? By the fact that the word design makes us aware that all culture is trickery, that we are tricksters tricked, and that any involve- ment with culture is the same thing as self-deception.
The only thing that gives plastic pens any value is their design, which is the reason that they write.