Democratically elected governments can to some degree adapt to spatially extended responsibility, because our communications technologies link people who cannot meet face-to-face. But the chasm of time is far more difficult to overcome, and indeed our governments (democratic or otherwise) are all structured in such a way that the whole of their attention goes to the demands of the present, with scarcely a thought to be spared for the future. For [Hans] Jonas, one of the questions we must face is this:

“What force shall represent the future in the present?”

from Tending the Digital Commons by Alan Jacobs