A Blast From The Future

Come closer, children, and spread ears like elephants’.

Let me tell you about the time of the ancestors.  You’ve heard all the stories and I know most of you don’t believe them, but listen to me who am old and remember.

Yes, it is true that men could fly through the air like birds, only faster than birds.  They could go to the other side of the Earth because they wanted to see what was there.

Yes, it is true that the great sorcerers of that time had created a magic that could project your image anywhere.  People saw what was happening on the other side of the world even without going there.

Yes, it is true that people could put their opinions — or their breakfast, or their cat pictures — up in a place where anyone in the world could see them, so that if someone was lying about what happened anywhere, then everyone would know.

Yes, it is true most illnesses were curable, or at least taken care of, so people lived to old, old ages.  At sixty, most people were still not old.

Yes, it is true there was no famine in most places.  The poor had the problem of being too fat.

Yes, it is true they had gadgets they carried in their pockets that allowed them to talk to anyone, anywhere in the world, at any time.  It is true that they could play music anywhere, at any time.  It is true they could pick foods out of seasons if they wished to, they could light up the night without fire, they had leisure — hours and hours of leisure — to enjoy all of this, and their poor had luxuries unimagined by the kings before their time.

What happened you say?

They forgot how fortunate they were.  They thought that living with no pain and with all the conveniences was the normal state of mankind.  They tore each other up over minor insults, small slights; they demanded even more leisure, even more convenience, with no regard to who paid for it; they felt guilty, perhaps, at how well off they were, and said their civilization and the commerce from which their riches came were bad and artificial, as though nature were ever good for humans.

But more importantly, they forgot what made humans humans, and they forgot they shared a common humanity.  Because they could control when they had children, they forgot that children are human and not a choice to be made by one person.  Because they could make life so comfortable, they forgot that even an uncomfortable life is still life, and started talking about getting rid of the old and infirm.  Because they imagined some perfect natural state, the women talked of how their problems could be solved by getting rid of men.  Or how one race or the other was doing nothing good for the world.

Once they’d stopped understanding that to diminish one human diminishes humanity, they tore each other apart.  Once they stopped understanding how good they had it.  They tore their lives apart, in defense of some imaginary creature called Gaia.

I guess we have a state of nature now, in the ruins of their great paradise, earning our living with the sweat of our brows, and dying fast and young.

Perhaps they would think we’re fortunate.

But if I could send one message back it would be: Do not deny to others what you had.  Push ever forward, to space if needed.

To stop, to turn inward, to long for the mud, is to deny your future children what you have.

But I can’t talk to them, and they are gone.  And they’ll never know what they gave up, because they never had to live without it.

*Make this NOT a blast from the future.  Built over, build under, build around, so when the elites collapse there’s something standing.  Be not afraid.  Do it for the children.*

252 thoughts on “A Blast From The Future

        1. I believe in Kenya it ends. and spread your ears like Obama’s.

          (I should be embarrassed, but after his rousing statement last night he deserves all the scorn we can offer.)

        2. Ooh, then Barry Hughart was appropriating African things to his “ancient China that never was,” unless China had the same story opening (which it might have). Naughty.

          Funny if so. I really could have used an annotated Hughart, especially since I’m still finding things that Tolkien slipped into his Middle Earth.

  1. Thank you eternally, Sarah, for this piece.

    Too many can neither remember when life was so blissfully easy, nor can they imagine that it could be harsh and unforgiving ever again. At some level of our minds, we know that poverty is Man’s default state, that it takes brutally hard work to prosper and even more hard work to remain so. At some level we concede, intellectually at least, that our good fortune was produced by millions in the past and is sustained by millions in the present. We seldom pause to contemplate the possibility that it could all come tumbling down.

    That gives me to muse upon the current popularity of dystopia fiction. There’s a lot of it around; indeed, the recent airing of the last Hunger Games movie should serve as a reminder that some of us, at least, can envision a future in shambles: a future in which life is once again nasty, poor, brutish, and short. Do we indulge in such fictions as a way of averting serious thought about the possibility of such a development? I hope not.

    Thomas Sowell quoted some earlier thinker in describing civilization as “a thin crust over a volcano.” Far too many have been picking at that crust, in the name of foolishnesses such as “social justice,” “safe spaces,” and “microaggressions.” We are not guaranteed, should such lunacy continue — and continue to be tolerated by those of us who know better — that we’ll have a lot of warning time before the volcano blows through the crust and delivers us to a long darkness.

    1. I suspect the popularity of dystopia for kids is verisimilitude from sensing the beneath the beneath of the dogmatically pro-abortionist and fifty million abortions. I know I picked up on a lot of things when I was young.

      If this is so, then a country with more popular support for abortions might have more extreme treatments of dystopia for young adults. I haven’t heard of a Japanese pro-life political demographic, but I don’t know much about Japanese politics. I do know they have a ‘bunch of random folks confined and told to murder each other’ genre.

      1. That genre is most probably a reflection of the highly competitive system for admission to advanced schools.

    2. Every year the world is invaded by millions of tiny barbarians. We call them “children.” Hannah Arendt.

      When did we stop defending civilization and start kowtowing to the incoming hordes, as surely our most prestigious colleges have begun? I thought we turned back that tide at Kent State in 1970.

      1. I wish Kent State had done the trick, RES. Sadly, the media, in service to the Left even then, succeeded in turning that event to the Left’s service.

        The Right has not yet learned how to turn the Left’s inherent toxicity against it. The time we have yet to learn is growing short.

      2. Nyet. The problem with that is that the students at Kent State are remembered as heroic protesters against The Man, not barbarians, and everyone except for those who believe it is their task to remember has forgotten the Weather Underground and the Nation of Islam.

        1. Yes. I was surprised how little splash the audio analysis of tapes from Kent State that confirmed that there was, in fact, gunfire from other than the M1 Garands issued to the National Guard before the Guard opened up.

          Just like they always said.

          It would have taken a really damn disciplined bunch to either stand their ground under fire while holding fire or to retreat under fire without firing back, and it turns out those are the only break-the-narrative things they could have done.

          And that audio analysis didn’t matter one jot – that narrative is set in stone, and at this point, what difference does it make?

              1. Y’know what? D**m it, I’m going to write that article about Millennials and why we are like we are…and that isn’t what the news and random cranky twerps keep saying.

              2. “Froelich documented Norman’s strange life in the wake of Kent State. He was hired as an undercover narcotics agent by the Washington, D.C. police department three months after the shootings – a job Norman’s uncle said the FBI got for Terry — and worked there until he moved to California in 1983. ”
                You’re right. This is very curious.

        1. It stopped a lot of the protests. Something about the reality of consequences. Alas, they did not generalize.

          1. It wasn’t done generally, so it could be dismissed as a one off.

            In the Belisarius books, Kungas the Kushan remarks that the best way to avoid spilling an ocean of blood eventually is to convince barbarians (Pathan hill tribes, in the example) is to show willingness to spill a lake of blood instantly.

            Kent State wasn’t even a bloody nose compared to what was needed.

    3. I have read with my own eyes a commenter who claimed the life of a mother starving in Africa was better than a welfare mother in America, because the African mother could get married.

      He seemed rather incoherent when people actually thought he meant “starving” merely because he said it, but he stuck to his position that giving the woman the benefit was our preventing her from marrying.

    4. I’m not sure that I agree that “at some level of our minds, we know poverty is Man’s default state.” I think many of us have come to the conclusion that Man’s default state is living in a three bedroom house, eating at restaurants for two meals a day, and having no more than eight hours of labor a day. If we don’t have that, it’s because some evil rich people are stealing from us. Much of our society reminds me of Aral Vorkosigan’s comment to Cordelia: “Is that really the lowest level of poverty you can imagine? Not having a comm console?” We have a really hard time imagining what true poverty looks like, or what we would stand to lose if civilization were to fall apart (hint, worker’s of the world: you DO in fact have a lot more to lose than your chains).

      1. Our imaginations are, by and large, woefully undereducated. There is almost no level of poverty that we, with our personal experiences, can imagine, which is actually the lowest level that people are surviving in.

        1. This is no more than one such artifact we have trouble imagining:

          Here in the West the regulatory agencies would be on this like flies on SJWs.

  2. You don’t like your life under the Islamic caliphate? All those things you describe were against the will of Allah. Now, excuse me while I go have sex with my goat.

    1. That’s fine, but you mustn’t eat it afterwards.

      Yes, it’s so common they actually have a rule about that.

        1. My friend, do not ever review some of the footage we had to look at from all the security cameras and tower cams that were on the heliostats over in Iraq. Dear God… If ever a nation’s domestic animals cried out for the establishment of an SPCA, that would be Iraqs…

          We had to carefully brief the poor bastards coming in to replace us, about the things they’d have to view in the course of monitoring those systems. Most were nauseated, a couple were intrigued, but all were eventually disgusted. The plight of the domestic animal in that country is truly sad, because they’re not only sexually abused on a routine basis, but are also mistreated routinely, and to a degree that would have the typical animal-loving nut-job here in the West saying “Kill them. Kill them all…”.

          I’m not overstating the situation a bit, either. If anything, probably understating it–The Iraqis had to know we were watching them, and the only ones that did the nasty with their barnyard victims had to have been the exhibitionists. God only knows what they got up outside the range of the cameras, but there are literally thousands of incidents immortalized on video, viewed through thermal cameras, night vision, and even standard daylight-only optics. It’s not just goats, either–Donkeys, sheep, anything with an orifice, apparently. Even poultry.

          There’s a price to be paid for the sexual repression and customs in the Arabic world, and the treatment of domestic animals is a side-effect. Plus, with the whole cousin-marriage thing, the inbreeding has led to a bunch of mental defectives in the population that can’t gain relief anywhere but the barnyard. We identified one of the worst offenders outside one of the base camps as the literal village idiot… If he wasn’t wandering around drooling, he was having his way with the village animal population.

      1. I was aware of that as well. And they accuse the Scots of being attached to their sheep?
        But after a year or so of goatish pleasure, you can sell the goat to a stranger, and no bad consequences will fall on him or his family. (I say him in the absolute certainty that any of you ladies will be in the harem and certainly not allowed to haggle about buying a goat.)

        1. I think you may be quite certain that the ladies hereabouts will only be included in harems as dead bodies, and mean to take a whole lot of them along as an honor guard if it comes down to that.

  3. We are utterly ignorant of how well we have life, and so utterly ungrateful. Scions of families worth $20 million dollars, who attend Ivy League schools, are rioting to demand more government money, because they are underprivileged and oppressed.

    This is, in other words, a time of madness and I, likewise, fear it will end very badly.

    1. The people who have some notion tend to have been other places for one reason or another OTHER than tourism (missionary, military, etc.)

      1. I attended a New England prep school for grades 7-12, and immediately afterward served a mission for the LDS church in California. The contrast was huge: drug dealers, gangbanger, homeless, subsidized housing, illegal immigrants, etc. Of course, there were a lot of fabulously rich people there too (Silicon Valley), but we spent most of our time in the poor areas, since those were the people more receptive to our message.

        The experience did far more to shape my understanding of the world, and of my place in it, than any of my prep school classes.

          1. That not everyone in the world has the means of a middle-class family? What can I say, I was still in my formative years.

            However, that was probably when I began to see that the world is divided into two kinds of people: makers and takers. Makers look at their narrow slice of the pie and think “I should go make more pie.” Takers whine about how unfair it is that they got a narrow slice and demand that other people give them some of theirs.

        1. In our comfortable modern Western Civilization, we often forget the drives and culture of the civilization we are built upon. I think it is still in our DNA, and it might be very interesting to watch and see if European Civilization can still remember.
          Unfortunately for them, they already sent their ‘wild’ ones to America and Australia, and there lies the necessary culture to remember. Jacksonian heritage is alive and well and living in the Appalachian mountains among other places.

          1. The problem wasn’t that they sent them to America and Australia, but rather that they sent all of the ones who were worth a damn to Flanders Field and Verdun.

          1. Surely it’s performed online in a few places – a link in the back matter would work. (Not that I’m not quite familiar with it, but…)

        2. And what song did I put on just before I read these comments?

          Uncanny, isn’t it?

  4. I’m one of the infirm who would be toast under a “natural paradise.” That’s why I’m scared witless that these jaded elites and SJW sorts will be successful in tearing it all down. Doing my best to be not afraid and contribute to the solution but some days they really know how to gut punch you.

    1. As am I. “Naturally,” I died five years ago last July, and I would last about a month in the “natural paradise.” Nature can go *beep* *beep* *beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep*.

  5. If anyone wonders why I direct so much hatred and contempt towards Progressives, this is why.

      1. And because to them, a hangnail is instagram-worthy and common sense is racist, they don’t quite get the depth when we say “Vile.”

        Being just as human as we are, they could be so much more. Instead, they aid our enemies and seek to tear down the very foundations of what made us, Americans, such a great people.

        1. “common sense” I am coming to loath this phrase.

          I just had a wing-nut use the phrase “sensible regulations” on FB. I told her that it, like “common sense” was a empty phrase, meaningless.

          In light of the growing, seemingly random, violence, and What is “sensible”, logical, to me is to lift the restrictions, arm the citizens, and teach firearms in school.

          But then I come from a very long line of sheep-dogs. (from the American Revolution to Desert Storm, someone in my family has been involved. If not there, then in law. We seem to be predisposed to stand between the wolves and the flock.)

          1. It is becoming a classic example of politician’s weasel words. Nobody is against “common sense” gun regulation, but until you get specific you can’t know whether it means “nobody gets to own one” or “it fires its standard size load reliably and accurately.”

            Sorta like the way I quip that my Father-in-Law and I agree on gun control, but in his mind that means limiting who can buy them to a very closely defined few while in my mind it means that at a standard distance you can place three shots in a target, close enough to lay a quarter over them.

          2. As my grandfather would have said, “good, old fashioned, horse sense.”

            What sense is used in “sensible” when it modifies “regulation” in that manner? None of the five I know, nor practical sensibility, such as one would have to come in out of the rain, and not count chickens ‘afore they are hatched.

            It’s a muddying of the language, a filth upon clear distinction that offends me as well. The sense of the common people, those folks who balance their checkbooks and set a little by for a rainy day, whose working day runs as long as the job requires, not ’till their backs get tired, that sense is practical, methodical, and well-tested.

            It is neither new-fangled nor niche, indeed it cannot be. Common sense follows natural consequence in a life close to the land: step into the rain, you will get wet; spend your days in idleness and you won’t eat save what charity gives you.

            “Common sense” regulation relies too much on the good will of other people- of the police, to remain hyper-vigilant, of our fellow citizens to remain just and of the criminal element to remain restrained. Good, old fashioned, horse sense requires self discipline and a careful mind.

            It is all of a piece. The one maintains the perfectibility of mankind, whilst the other acknowledges the permanent place, ’till Judgement day, of sin and wicked intent.

  6. Yes, a shuddersome vision of a world that threw away its future.

    I wrote a very similar vision in a short story that never found a home, but ended up becoming backstory to my current novel WIP. The protagonist is a post-biological human who had to flee into space as part of a robot probe because the alternative was being condemned as an illegal AI or a violation of the sanctity of the dead. He then gets to watch civilization unravel.

    Here’s a snippet I think is particularly telling:

    Of greater concern was the state of signals from Earth. Already whole regions had gone dark, and what transmissions he did receive suggested significant regression in social and technological development. Not only had innovation ceased, but even established technologies were slipping away, impossible to support in an increasingly fragmented world. He could only wonder how long it would be before his final lifeline went silent under the rising tide of barbarism, leaving him alone in the endless darkness.
    It came while he was mining volatiles from a minor Kuiper Belt object. For the past several years the technological sophistication of signals had declined in tandem with the growing reports of disorder, of rebels and raiders attacking familiar American cities. The last survivors had even lost the ability to generate a carrier wave and fallen back on code. That final transmission pleaded for someone to come to the relief of Wichita, ending with: raiders burning walls, coming in. A few more bursts followed, perhaps indicative of a scuffle in the radio room, someone or something hitting the code key at random.

  7. At sixty, most people were still not old.

    At sixty-two and 191/365ths, OTOH, I can confirm that many of us are.

    1. Born June 17th, 1954 and I say that I’m Not Old. (But my knees disagree. [Wink])

      1. Yer only as old as ya feel!

        . . . Save on Thursday mornings, after another all-nighter, and twenty hours to go until my next scheduled bedtime (when I think about what a hundred must feel like, tired, aching, and not looking forward to getting going anywhere).

        1. Or if you believe Groucho Marx, only as old as the woman you feel.

          (Naturally, this can be somewhat problematic if a) the woman in question is unreceptive, particularly the women around here, or b) one isn’t interested in women in that way.)

      2. Born about 10 years earlier than you, I’m not old, just slowed down a mite. Of course, I was never old before, so it might be I don’t know what feeling old would feel like…

    2. At sixty-two and 97/365ths, some days I’m much older than others. Particularly in the mornings, before everything starts moving properly.

  8. Aw, maaaaaannn, now I’ve got this idea for a story about a remnant, no, two. One believes in the other, and follows (in careful secret) a prophesy about the return of technology and medicine. If they work hard, and rediscover, or revive, tech to a certain level, the other group, which still has the blessed and live-saving knowledge, will come to them (or they will be able to reach the other group) and rebuild the world. Sort of “Canticle for Liebowitz” meets the 12the Imam (or the hidden priests in Highia Sophia).

    All y’all, quit kicking my muse into overdrive, please? I do NOT have time to be writing these just now.

        1. Thalia’s in charge of comedy and bucolic poetry. That’s about as close a guess as I can come up with . . . other than, they probably all get snarky about our efforts in their specialties.

          1. Cassandra is one of mine. She shows up in the form of a black dog starting this time of night. 🙂

  9. The longer we hold on, the more that rapid prototype fabrication advances, the easier it is for a small high-tech holdout to avoid regressing to pre-industrial.

    God willing, there will be points of light to begin the recovery from.

    1. The problem with an isolated remnant is the “barbarians have breached the walls” thing – whether you look at the Chinese cities resisting the Mongols, the “Kingdom of Soissons” resisting the Franks, or Constantinople resisting the Moslems, if you don’t have allies or enough land to create defense in depth, you are eventually screwed.

      The real hope is that those technologies will become so widely dispersed and ubiquitously supportable that no matter which morons are in charge, the tech level will not fall that much avareged across the (remaining) population.

      1. The barbarians at the gates are a problem, but the solution will be geographic boundaries that can then be fortified by the civilized remnants.

        Utah Valley, for example.

        1. Even the Dark Ages had technological advances on the Romans. Three-field crop rotation for instance.

          1. As folks have frequently quipped, it’s “dark” like “we can’t see there,” not “dark” as in “evil and ignorant.”

            Reminds me of the Baxter Black poem on the disappearing cowboy that ends by pointing out we’re just hard to see from the road.

      1. Heh. If graphene can be used for it, the points of light might end up relying on zeppelins to trade with each other.

  10. As a note of optimism: Remember that after the fall of Rome, indoor plumbing eventually came back.

      1. Back in the good old days, I subscribed to Scientific American, which had ’50’ and ‘100 years ago’ features. Finally they got old enough for 150 years ago. They reprinted a column from 1850 where they were so happy that Western Civilization had returned to the level of the Roman Empire. A century and a half of living in squalor. Perfectly good reason to worry about our future.

        1. They remembered all those hundreds of years what the quality of life had been like, and were still unable to return to it? Now THAT is scary…

          1. There was no way to organize a society on that scale until the 1800s. People had the basic knowledge, but getting so many people to work together, and maintain what was built (and rediscovering concrete) took a while.

          2. As I understand it, most of them didn’t. Remember what it was like, I mean– and it hadn’t been in their areas, anyways.

            Remove pop culture from what we “know” about then, and what percentage of the population knows anything about Rome? I’m actually mildly interested, and it’s about as deep as dew, nevermind a puddle!

            1. Nod.

              Even in areas where there were plenty of Roman ruins, actual stories about “what it was like then” would be vague for the common person.

              Educated people might know more but it’s hard to say.

              Of course, what would be more important for even educated people is “what’s happening now” alone with “is this better or worse than grandpa’s time”. [Smile]

              1. May I? I came from a place that came from Rome. ya’ll are wrong. Maybe it was that way in the British Isles, but almost everyone where I grew up knew a lot about Rome. Part of it is we were using their roads and aqueducts and sewers. T he other part is we still had records.
                AND you’d be amazed what passes from father to son and mother to daughter when NO ONE MOVES.

                1. Would it have been that way in the dark ages, though?

                  There’d be stories– but not as much free time for them, and your dad was a super-scholar type.

                  1. It would have been, because of stones in fields, etc. Though the sentence “our ancestors” in Portugal has a freight I can’t convey year.
                    Yeah, dad is an history geek.

                    1. Careful studies of oral history have concluded that such histories are accurate to about 150 years IF you have specially trained professionals whose task is to remember. . . past that, they are unreliable.

                      I think some written history got fed into the taproots.

                2. When I was in Jordan, the road down from Mt. Nebo was build on and followed one of the original roads the Romans had built. There still Roman “road markers” – three or four foot tall stone plinth’s with barely legible markings – off the edge it.

            2. What percentage? Dunno, but folks who got a classical education pounded into them, however unwilling they were to get it, probably count.

              Though if they started teaching Roman history like I learned in Catholic school, starting with the badasses like Horatius Cocles, Scipio Africanus, and Cincinnatus, they would at least keep some of the boys interested long enough to get hooked.

              1. If you can suggest good sources, I’d be glad of it– I’ve never heard more than maybe a quote sourced to one or two of those guys.

                1. For Cincinnatus, you want Livy. Lots of translations abound if the original source is too boggling. I think Guteburg has Livy- they do! But Childs is a bit rife with translationese, if that makes any sense.

                  Livy is a good first source for most any of them, but dry, very dry. Pliny and Plutarch, possibly- Histories or Natural Histories. Most folks who write about Roman Heroes use Livy as their base.

                  The book I learned from way back in the dark ages was essentially a childrens textbook, Roman Antiquities, I think it was? Something very like, my google-fu is failing me, can’t find the actual book right now. The author knew little boys, at least, so every Roman hero had his battle, at least three quotes “Anyone who wants to save the Republic, grab your weapons and follow me!” and in between actually gave quite a bit of historical background.

                  From that point on, I took something on the order of nine more courses that at least touched on Roman history, from Latin class (Fabulae Romanae will give them basic translation practice and grammar along with a few heroes) to ancient civ to archaeology. It’s a good base for kids to start with, considering how often it will be repeated in later classes, if they go that route.

                    1. Looks familiar. This was over thirty years ago, when I was in kindergarten and grade school, so I caution that my memory might be faulty! It’s not the heroes book, I think, but it looks like the second or third we read.

                    2. Woke up this morning with a poem in my head, and add this to the pile: Horatius at the Bridge by Babbington. I had to memorize parts of it to recite in grade school, and it’s a pretty good depiction of Horatius Cocles for the younger impressionable male- at least it was for me. *grin*

        2. ” They reprinted a column from 1850 where they were so happy that Western Civilization had returned to the level of the Roman Empire. ”

          Nonsense. It had far exceeded the level of the Roman Empire. It’s just that its advances past them had been in different areas. For instance, you no longer had women whose bones were deformed because they were the grinding slaves that produced the flour; we had mills for that. And while unmarried women were still called spinsters, this was not because they would spend their days endlessly spinning. Clocks were immeasurably better. Franklin stoves, which prevented an enormous number of deaths caused by clothes catching on fire. And more.

          1. Roads, large public works, we still can not replicate some of their concrete. Their baths had central heating… now, admittedly it was hard on the slaves carrying the charcoal under the floor. Their clocks, particularly water clocks rivaled the 1850s for accuracy. While usually crafted as unique items, they had some incredibly precise machines to predict planetary motion. As TXRed mentioned, their administration skills were were second to none. Our mills destroyed our teeth, because of the high amounts of stone grit. I believe we had slavery until 1865… so were we really that advanced?

              1. I understand they had a form of concrete that could be poured into sea water and it would cure and harden to make footings for their piers and what not. We have to evacuate the water around the casing/form to accomplish the same thing. Perhaps we should scour the hills around Pompeii and see if it works?

                1. It’s called Pozzolan concrete. We can duplicate it now and have been able to do so for decades. it’s just very expensive and we have much cheaper alternatives.

                    1. We can re-create Roman accident, but on purpose. Sort of like how we don’t have to leave bread out and hope a yeast culture will establish itself, we can recreate that accident on purpose.

                      Part of why it got lost is because they didn’t know why it was working.

                1. And the interesting question about Middle East cultures is why? Why have they gotten stuck with what seems to be something barely functional and highly toxic?

                  And the even more interesting question: would it be possible to break those cultures out of their rut, turn them into something that allows positive developments and mobility again? And how? Especially if we are thinking in term of doing it from inside the culture, who are the people who’d need to be reached, and how could they be reached?

                  1. (And it’s not so much that I am interested in “saving” those cultures, although of course changing them into something friendlier towards us would be nice. It’s our own I’d want to save. If we end up in the middle of Dark Ages, what could be done to help them to stay as short as possible, and even more important, try to make sure we won’t get stuck in that way).

                  2. It’s politically incorrect to say this but Islam may be the problem with the Middle East. [Frown]

                  3. They’re tribal.

                    Other places have developed more because they have the ability to trust those outside of the family group– be it the Christian/Jewish theory that everybody is your kinsman, or the Chinese one of making a really big tribe. (Romans did that one, too, didn’t they?)

                    But they can’t even have a good trust relationship with those who aren’t family, because the enforcement mechanisms (there, provided by family– other than the going to war type stuff of ‘avenging our honor,’ which is one family against another) don’t work outside of the family.

                    So they’re a bunch of unconnected points, or even crabs in a bucket, rather than the ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’ form.

  11. Many years ago Gordon Dickson wrote a novel that may explain this. In it, high tech humans from the stars (our ancestors) reconnected with earth. During the course of the story the earth people find that the star people fight to the death over petty slights and imaginary greivences until they nearly destroy their civilization. It is saved by the earth hero, of course.
    Dickson got the idea from a study done of some smart monkeys in the wilds of South America. They divided into bickering clans and were always jockeying for social position and fighting low level battles. They were smarter than other monkeys of similar species. The anthropologists said they were smarted because they fought all the time. Dickson wondered if they fought all the time because they were smarter, so survived better and thus had more time to fight over little things.
    So, we are very, very much richer – and smarter – than the monkeys. So we fight harder over smaller and smaller things.
    To make our lives have meaning.

          1. N.B., this was back when winning a Nebula or Hugo meant a book was an exciting, thought-provoking read that people didn’t have to be flogged to finish.

        1. Funny just found my copy of that book – shortly after finding the copy of Analog magazine that it was serialized in.

  12. If anything, the SJW’s ought to fear the results of what they are doing. There an idea among the academic class, running like a corrupted background program on grandma’s PC, that the collapse of our society will result in the rise of a Socialist Utopia (basically because the Soviets would step in and start one). And like most Marxist dogma, this has never been properly analyzed or updated according to current conditions. The workers are never going to give leadership to these idiots, and there is no longer a Soviet Union to step in.

    Should a collapse happen, the result would very likely be a kind of return to the post Roman Dark Ages. Those with arms will take their place on the top, as the new Dukes, Knights, Men at Arms, et al.. Those with practical skills in the middle, as craftmen in various skilled trades. And the useless SJW types at the bottom, as serfs and laborers.

        1. So do I. Silver lining, society might finally get some benefit from them that way. I’d prefer they just see the error of their ways and stop trying to tear down western civilization.

    1. And the useless SJW types at the bottom, as serfs and laborers.

      If they’re lucky that is. [Evil Grin]

      1. Vegans will be particular delicacies.

        The greater likelihood is that SJWs will be particularly well-adapted to being the kapos, eager to sell out their fellows for a crust of bread.

        1. If society returns to being an honor-based (because rule of law and enforcement/administration thereof has lapsed), SJW/kapo types may be soon recognized, and not long-lived.

    2. to which some SJW history prof will tell you how the dark ages weren’t all that dark and not as bad as they were made out to be…

      (seriously a casual youtube search will yield a dozen videos)

      1. It depended on where you were, and when. Some areas held steady and slowly progressed, others got flattened, and a few staggered before running and hiding in the Alps.

        1. Except where Islamic forces had taken hold, or the Vikings were taking over, of course.

            1. If I can accomplish nothing else in this life but spoiling the Progressive narrative, I will at least go to my grave knowing I have accomplished something positive.

        2. It is important to remember that Protestants wrote the bulk of our history and would not give the Catholic church any credit for what it preserved and created at the time. My understanding is that both the number of dancing angels and exactly how Priest turned wine and crackers into the blood and body of Christ were hot topics of the day. That consuming the blood and body of Christ was ritual canibalism never seemed to enter the discussion.

          1. A book on this subject which I liked was “How the Irish Saved Civilization” mostly about the effect of early Irish monastics preserving knowledge and books, and Christianity, in the late 400s to 600s or so.
            A good and hopeful read on a serious subject.

          2. Wasn’t cannibalism one of the accusations leveled against Christians during the Roman persecutions?

          3. The Scholastics and their discussions were part of the “High Middle Ages,” centuries after the Dark Ages. It was a standard part of university education to debate questions in front of an audience, and for students to pose professors any question and get them to argue out both sides before coming to a conclusion. We have thousands of pages of debate notes written up by students from listening to some of the more popular profs. So if there is a topic they did not cover, I would be surprised.

            1. So anyway, sometimes the topics were serious theology, and sometimes they were jokes. Nobody has ever found a dancing angel disputation record, to my knowledge, but that would be on the joke side.

              1. Well, the angel question was answered in one of Katharine Kurtz’s novels.

                An angel was asked that question (in jest) and answered “First, why would we want to dance on the head of a pin. Second, as many as needed to.” [Very Big Grin]

                1. I heard once, and don’t remember where, that it was about whether angels have material forms as well as spiritual. If material, then the number is finite. If not, theninfinite. Ring any bells for anyone?

                  1. I’ve heard that explanation as well but don’t remember the source.

                  2. I believe our souls and angel’s spirits can compress themselves to fit into ‘plank space’ 10 to the -35 power meters.
                    See: http://htwins.net/scale2/ it is incredible.
                    Anyway, smaller than that scale, time and space are ‘undefined’. I believe this is the path to Heaven (and possibly less pleasant places).

                  1. “In Dulci Jubilo” was apparently written by Heinrich Suso after he had a dream of angels dancing a carol to that song.

                    (“Dictated songs” are an interesting topic in themselves. Usually it’s fairy songs, not angelic ones, although obviously the Sanctus and the Gospel part of the Gloria both count.)

                  2. Ah, but the question is “COULD dance”. This is an infinite number, even if there aren’t an infinite number, or even, even were there no angels. Because they are spirits and could neither exclude nor be excluded from space.

                  1. It depends on whether or not they’re fallen.

                    Or in a Chicano “Lowrider” (that is, in a swung low, sweet chariot) in which case they’re a band.

          4. That consuming the blood and body of Christ was ritual canibalism never seemed to enter the discussion.

            The oogie-boogie of the phrase “ritual cannibalism” wasn’t yet a thing.

            Christians have been aware of the whole “eat of my body and drink my blood” thing being a big deal since…well, before Himself died. ‘It is a hard saying,’ I believe was the phrase.

            The angels on a head of a pin was meant to be a mocking parody, and transubstantiation got its name at some point about 1250. (Formal definition.)

            1. Yes, transubstantiation that is where a Priest reaches into the quantum substrate (a term borrowed from Jeb Kinnison) and changes the class header of the wine and bread to ‘blood/body of Christ’. This works because the individual molecules are identical to molecules in our body. That as a group they are wine and bread is irrelevant. Once the header is changed, all is good. See! The Monks in 1250 were discussing quantum mechanics.

              1. The everybody Christian back since 30-something. Quantum mechanics isn’t my thing; wouldn’t be the first time that science borrowed heavily from Christianity for ideas for what’s impressive, although that’s not the Mystery I’d have gone for.

                Really should find something out about it before you opine on it, you keep sounding like those guys trying to guilt trip people about the Syrian refugees based on a badly remembered viewing of some kids’ Nativity play.

                1. The dark ages reference was a few posts ago. The quantum mechanical part is partly from Bell’s Theorem and the local hidden variable theory, where certain aspects of particles were hidden from reality. Actually Bell was attempting to disprove the local hidden variable theory, and was at least mostly successful. Those references are easily found in Wikipedia, although I would be glad to post the links.
                  Partly, it was an attempt at humor, and the ‘everything old is new again’. Physics often recycles old ideas, like Einstein’s cosmological constant, denounced by Einstein himself, but now is considered possibly meaningful to define dark energy.

                  Sorry if you found it offensive. As I always told my Mother; “It really isn’t a joke if you have to explain it.” Or as Savak says:

                  Humor, it is a difficult concept.

                  1. I didn’t say anything about the dark ages. Or being offended. And I did not have a problem understanding what you were saying about QM.

                    The subject was transubstantiation, and the inaccuracies that weren’t even close enough to be a joke. Much like the “A couple going to the husband’s home town for a tax census are totally the same as people running away from a warzone” shtick.

                    1. I didn’t say anything about Syrian refugees or running away from a war zone. Where exactly did that come from? I am aware that Joseph and Mary returned to Bethlehem for a Roman Census. Since we were also talking about Romans, they kept good records. The last kid’s Nativity play I witnessed was actually pretty good.
                      As for Mysteries of the Christian Faith, I believe the Resurrection to be the greatest, and I would place transubstantiation right after that. Before Christmas and the Birth of Christ.
                      Any guilt trip on Syrian refugees I place solely on Obama and his minions. I wasn’t calling for a guilt trip at all. I find returning to your home town for the census to be a little strange, and certainly a burden, but other than staying in the barn, I believe people running away from a warzone might find a nice barn, with no shooting and no bombing at least an improvement on the way.
                      Am I this week’s “Go play outside in the sandbox…, while the adults talk about “Real Life” at the “Big Table”.” person or something? No one told me about it.

                    2. I didn’t say anything about Syrian refugees or running away from a war zone. Where exactly did that come from?

                      A metaphor. I’m not going to recreate the entire back and forth when it’s right there on the page.

                      Am I this week’s “Go play outside in the sandbox…, while the adults talk about “Real Life” at the “Big Table”.” person or something?

                      You don’t seem to be paying attention to the conversation, or accuracy…which would be fine, except you keep responding to it and making rather precise statements.

                      If you were being treated like a child, I wouldn’t be bothering to respond at all.

                    3. I will certainly remember your sensitives in the future.

                      Are you on some sort of “make up strange stuff” kick?
                      Because between the screwball “humor” of painfully ignorant theological statements for no good reason, and responding to things that I didn’t actually say, along with not being able to follow a conversation for two whole comments, it’s just random.
                      And not even in the “orange you glad I didn’t say apple” knock-knock joke way, since there’s no payoff.

                    4. And please, feel no need to respond to any of my posts, as I will certainly not read them.

                      This would have a lot more meaning if you’d shown an inclination to read the ones you did respond to, rather than scan-and-emote.

                    5. oogie-boogie
                      find something out about it before you opine on it, you keep sounding like those guys trying to guilt trip people
                      transubstantiation, and the inaccuracies that weren’t even close enough to be a joke
                      A metaphor. I’m not going to recreate the entire back and forth when it’s right there on the page.
                      treated like a child
                      “make up strange stuff” kick?
                      Because between the screwball “humor” of painfully ignorant
                      along with not being able to follow a conversation for two whole comments,

                      Actually, I read and understood all these comments from your posts.
                      There were a couple of additional ‘digs’ but I’m being generous, so I’ll ignore them.

                    6. Ah, so you were offended that your digs weren’t treated with the respect you feel they’re due, as if they were either factual or reasonable, so you generously accused me of your own reaction, tried the ‘it was a joke’ thing and then played dumb.

                      I’d claim I’d keep your sensitivities in mind, except that I honestly probably won’t remember to carve you out a special exception to the usual give-and-take that goes on here. Someone not wishing to take what they just dished out is annoying, but meh.

      2. ??? Most of the time I see them saying that there was only bad in the “dark ages” because of the evil Christian boogied boogidy making it terrible.

        1. Which is kinda fascinating, considering that in most small places at that time the arts of reading/writing were mostly preserved by the local representatives of that self-same boogy.

  13. in the (possible) up coming struggle, there are (will be) two sides. their side has willfully disarmed themselves, are afraid of guns. our side is very well armed. how do you think this is going to end!!!!
    as I have always said: if two people get in to an argument, right or wrong does not matter, the winner is the one who has the weapon.
    note: if both are armed, their is generally not an argument.

    1. Yep- the idea for the Radicals was that the collapse would cause the Proletariat to Rise Up… or at least the Soviet Union would step in to bring order.
      But, the Soviets have fallen, and the Radicals are neither Feared or Loved by the Proles- if anything the great majority of normal people think the college radical types to be a bunch of spoiled, stupid, privilege ninnys.
      So, they want society to collapse, but they are not preparing to step in and take over- you need to personally have guns for that to work.
      Bunch of idiots…

      1. That is basic Marxism. The good Communist must heighten the contradictions of capitalism until its miseris are inexplicably resolved by a violent eruption.

  14. There is a bustling city called Hiroshima in Japan. It is built right over the place where the first-ever atomic bomb exploded. There’s another just like it, Nagasaki. I checked on Google, you can’t even tell anything ever happened there.

    I look at that, and then I look at the retarded children and narcissistic wankers who make up our so-called ‘elites’. I look at the worthless assholes who make up our so-called enemies, ISIS. They are a pack of fundamentalist hillbillies with impulse control issues.

    I look at these things, then I laugh and go back to what I was doing.

    1. I can’t recall if it was Nagasaki or Hiroshima, but one had much of its trolley system operational again within a week of the atomic bomb exploding there. Against external forces, society and civilization can keep going.

      The internal forces of the Progressives worry me more, because they have spent the decades spreading their pernicious memes among the most vulnerable, the west’s children and young adults. It is nothing more than child abuse, if you ask me, but it has been all to effective.

      Too many I’ve met who are five or more years younger than I are leaving high school and college not with the goal of preparing for a job (military, normal corporate, or self-employed) and/or raising a family. No, instead they’re convinced they must go change the world to better accommodate Progressive ideals, and seek employment as government bureaucrats, at non-profits, or as part of the educational-entertainment-journalistic complex. In other words, positions which offer them opportunities to denigrate, obstruct, and tear down western civilization.

      To their credit, not all of them have bought into this. Moreover, some of them are seeing Progressives lies as lies. Unfortunately, they’ve been too well programmed that Republicans are evil, and voting third party is throwing you vote away, for this to make much difference at the ballot box – save perhaps by discouraging them from voting in the first place.

      1. “No, instead they’re convinced they must go change the world to better accommodate Progressive ideals, and seek employment as government bureaucrats…”

        Some of us as are heading for government are going so’s the other idiots can’t run riot–and would consider making the world better a side bonus of keeping it from getting worse.

      2. Too many I’ve met who are five or more years younger than I are leaving high school and college … convinced they must go change the world to better accommodate Progressive ideals

        I understand there are some great employment opportunities as paid protesters, although the hours are long, the pay meager and sometimes The Man’s checks don’t clear. OTOH, you get to be on TV and speak Truth* to Power*.

        *[for certain values of]

    2. Ahem, second atomic bomb. The first exploded over the New Mexico desert.

      I’ve been to Nagasaki, I’ve stood at ground zero, aside from a statue garden and a nice museum, there’s no real difference between it and San Francisco.

  15. Reblogged this on The Arts Mechanical and commented:
    One wonders what the people of Europe thought, surrounded by the wonders that was Rome. One also wonders what future astronauts will think if they believe that they are the first on the moon and encounter Apollo.

    1. There was a mountain — somewhere — where the first recorded climb of it found a pair of moccasins on top. the original ascent was only legend to the tribes about.

    2. One wonders what the people of Europe thought, surrounded by the wonders that was Rome.

      “Sweet! These stones are already cut and shaped, so we can skip that part and get straight to putting up walls!”

      1. Yep, that’s part of the reason that the Colosseum is in such bad shape.

        Romans were mining it for building material.

      2. Civilized people knew,about Rome. Barbarians like the Saxons of England wrote poetry about giants building towers. (But that was probably a Bible reference, and the skald probably knew it was Roman work.)

  16. One of my grandmothers (not great-grandmothers) was born in 1913, ten years after the Wright Brothers first flew. And growing up, I heard her tell of going out to fetch wood for the stove – used for both heat and cooking – fetching water from the well for cooking or bathing, etc. Her memories are still of a time less than 100 years ago. Indoor plumbing was thing of her future – or of distant places.

    Now, in 2015, it’s roughly 100 years since her early memories – and the most primitive place I’ve visited in Iowa, that wasn’t a campground or wilderness, had hot and cold running water, electric light, TV and radio, automated heat, and was a motel that was so “old fashioned” that the place still used metal keys rather than magstrip cards.

    I’ve not lived her life, by a long shot. I’ve never truly not known electricity – even at a place that didn’t yet have running water. I do recall living there before the well was drilled (drilled, not dug) and the folks having a couple 5 gallon containers for water that, carefully conserved, lasted a few days before they had to be re-filled at my grandparent’s house in town – and that visit included bathing. I’ve re-stoked or re-started the wood fire more times than I care to think about, too, and gas heat is wonderful. And these are, for us in the “First World” pretty basic things. The things we tend not to think about as we generally don’t need to. Flip a switch and the lights don’t come on? Rare. Turn the tap and water doesn’t flow? Rare.

    And then there’s the advanced stuff, by that standard. Telecommunications has gone from expensive or unreliable over distances to nearly trivial. As a kid I marveled at the idea of ham being able to talk all over the world. Now, I can do that with Skype, or weblogs (hello, folks!), or even make a cell call (Long distance? What’s that?).

    Naturally, I like this modern state of affairs and dislike the silly (at best!) people who seem to think I shouldn’t have it. Are there others without? Yes. Lowering my standard of living will do NOTHING to help raise theirs. In fact, that will likely hurt the chances of their standard of living being raised. Productivity and genuine efficiency and lowering of costs makes the wonders I benefit from more and more accessible.

    They say I should not do X or Y or Z (and yet they are special and should be allowed such?! What??) but propose nothing better to replace those things. They fail to realize a lesson taught by the phonograph cylinder and cylinder phonograph. Go out and try to buy a new, commercial cylinder phonograph and some new cylinder records – from a major label. Can’t do it? Why not? Nothing illegal about making them. Any patents on them are long expired. But they’ve been replaced by better things, over and over, to the point where only enthusiasts and historians deal with the things. To make something go away, it must be replaced with better, not simply legislated against. I use very few incandescent bulbs now, but not because of any law. I have boxes of the older style bulbs. I’ve switched to mostly LED as I prefer the efficiency and like not changing bulbs very often. I can foresee a day when the Light Bulb Joke goes thus: “How many $X does it take to change a bulb?” “Whaddayamean change a light bulb?” The self-proclaimed “progressives” aren’t making that happen. The “Sons of Martha” are, for it is they who actually practice progress.

    1. I should mention, my grandmother’s memories were of life in rural Iowa in the early 1900’s – which makes the mention of Iowa in the second paragraph make more sense.

    2. Running water? There are places that are cities that don’t have universal running water, and even if the running water is there, not necessarily safe to drink.

      That’s why the people who sneer at the high consumption of soda in certain countries over ‘fruit juices and water’ don’t realize that most of the time that’s the only drink that the people there know will not end them by having them shit out their entire digestive system.

      1. I still drink way too much soda because of three years in Iowa City in the mid-80s. The water was so heavily treated to make it ‘safe’ that my dermatologist and gynecologist had given me strict orders not to take baths, showers only. If you did run a tub, your bathroom smelled like a swimming pool locker room, and the foot of water in a white procelain tub was blue. As my hair grew out after I moved you could see the bleach line. The head of the water treatment plant was on record saying that the “water was safe to drink, but I wouldn’t recommend it”.

        For years before that we’d lived in Ireland, and while the water wasn’t too bad in Dublin, where we lived in the west we had well water that tasted like peat. The bath water was brown rather than blue from so much vegetable matter. Again, quite safe to drink, but man, it tasted nasty.

      2. Priorities, priorities. There have been UN conferences on the Girl which insisted that she must have contraception but were unable to agree she needed potable water.

        1. Well of course the UN could agree on contraception but not potable water.
          If the girl has potable water, she will be less vulnerable to being shoved into a place where she’ll need contraception. And given the UN’s track record, they do not want fewer vulnerable young women.

            1. Running is not my inclination. We’ve a kinsman, an IRA man, who had to flee two successive countries because of what he did to the English soldiers who… mistreated… his sister. I named one of my sons for him.

      3. Delhi, India, when I was there in the ’90’s. Sent some white T-shirts out to be washed by the hotel(a major chain), and they came back pink… Had to move the next day because the water system went bad… And yeah, only drink soda from bottle that you wipe off the cap and then the mouth before you drink.

        1. I remember having to do laundry by hand, at the sidewalk from a tap because the water pressure was such that it wouldn’t always get to the apartment. So we often had to haul water into the house by the bucket, but it was just easier to to the laundry, which had to be done during the day, outside. The water pressure was stronger during the evenings, which is when we would fill the water drums inside,and do dishes.

          My brothers’ dislike of wearing denim dates from back then, because it was incredibly heavy when wet. Scrubbing clothes clean by hand, and using bar laundry soap, lifting the wet, heavy pants and squeezing out as much water as you could…

          I really like having a washing machine now.

    3. My Grandmother’s home had running water in the kitchen. They accomplished this feat because they lived on the side of a mountain with a spring some distance above them. My Grandfather and Great-grandfather ran pipes from the spring into the kitchen. Now, all of the other chores your Grandmother remembers were the same.
      I am using LED bulbs with mixed results. My first, a ‘100 watt’ equivalent that I paid $150 for (it is in a light that takes three people and an 18′ ladder to change), has been working non-stop for at least 6 years. The ‘candelabra’ bulbs lasted about 6 months. I think part of my problem is I live in a rural area, and we have more power outages than city folk. Some are the off/on in a second or two, so the standby generator does not cut in. When the power comes back on, I don’t think the LEDs like the voltage spikes.

      1. I do notice any power glitches or fluctuations much more with LED than I did with incandescent or fluorescent lamps. I’ve picked up on these before a UPS with buck/boost tripped to adjust voltage.

        1. Back in 1960s, when “psychedelia” was the craze, you could buy a little wafer to fit between a light bulb and its socket and cause the light to flicker and strobe; do that with a three light fixture using a red, a green and a blue bulb and you were in the parteeeee zone.

          Some time since then I read about an Israeli company marketing a similar device which did the opposite, eliminating current jumps and flickers (probably converted the current to DC from AC) and promising much improved bulb life.

          Whether or not it worked I’ve no idea — the price wasn’t much but either because light bulbs were so cheap folk didn’t worry about cost or because the marketing simply didn’t succeed, the product doesn’t seem to be available (or perhaps I’ve simply not thought to look for it.)

      2. LED bulb life depends partly on whether you’re burning them base-up or base-down – if the electronic ballast is at the top, heat accumulates and reduces the life of the ballast.

        1. The place I know bulb life differences the most is a ceiling fan fixture. The vibration would kill about four incandescent bulbs a year – on a good year. CFLs lasted a bit longer, but still died early. The last time I changed the LEDs in the fixture was to get a better color temperature. I loathe 2700K yellow – except perhaps for bedside. 3000K is tolerable, but for most things I really want 4000-4100 K. Replacements for fluorescent tubes are available in a nice selection of color temperatures and I can get just what I desire. Incandescent replacements with rare exception seem to fall into 2700K yellow and 5000K blue, and ‘more expensive’ or ‘what?’.

    4. Lowering my standard of living will do NOTHING to help raise theirs.

      That’s one of Mark Ford’s principles over at Early To Rise. As he puts it, “The best thing you can do for the poor is not be one of them.”

    5. My paternal grandmother was born in Indian Territory in 1902, about eighteen months before the Wright brothers first powered flights.

      Chopping wood, water from a hand-pumped well, left school after third grade (but was an enthusiastic reader until near the end of her life) to help support the family working, etc.

      Saw two world wars, but also saw men walking on the moon before she passed. She also raised her three grandchildren after their mother died in a hit-and-run auto-pedestrian accident. We were luckier than we knew in the years after that.

    1. It won’t let me log in, or register, or…well, anything. *wry*

      I figure the drugs are like a brace when you break a bone. It’s to keep you in line until you’re healed enough.

      For the not trying again… do you wish that your two lost boys had never been? Not, when you’re rolling in pain, but really. Obviously, don’t answer that here, it’s something to think about in your heart of hearts, but if you do not wish they had never been because they were lost, then it’s not selfish to wish to try again.

      For the ‘unable to focus and aching’ thing, even though I know you’re not Catholic, Mother Angelica’s nuns praying the rosary is very soothing without needing focus. Just sort of…float with the music, let the voices go.
      [audio src="http://ewtn.edgeboss.net/download/ewtn/audiolibrary/olam_luminous.mp3" /]

      1. I’ve been listening to that actually. It helps. (And I actually pray the rosary when I can’t stand any of the thoughts in my head. It helps more than any of the therapy I’ve gotten!)

        No, for all the pain and suffering that we had after we lost them, I’m glad we had the boys. As Rhys said “Yeah, there’s a chance we might also lose the next bubby, but if we don’t… we have another awesome, incredibly cute bubby.” He figures with our track record of boys it’ll be another boy.

        We’ll try again next year; we’re waiting for me to heal up. You know the part where life seems to like seeing how much it can throw before I break?

        I’m not broken yet. Some days it doesn’t feel like I’m not, but there’s that little voice inside that says “You’re not.”

    2. I thought I saw one of your posts on another blog. Just a little while back. That or some low-life has stolen your name.

  17. This reminds me of a few similar stories I’ve seen. The one that comes to mind as most similar is by, IIRC, Spider Robinson, and involves a man telling his grandchildren a bedtime story about the days when he was a child, and we could go to the moon, then damning the people of that time for condemning future generations to severely limited options and poverty.

    1. It has been expressed cinematically,

      albeit with a somewhat different basis for the collapse (because Hollywood wouldn’t tolerate the more credible one.)

      1. They can’t be part of the problem!! They are part of the solution, because they are on the Right Side of History . . . Um, sorry, make that the Correct Side of History!!!

        /sarc, just in case a visitor reads this and wonders.

  18. It’s late. I’m a bit snockered (It’s been A. Day. Those of you who have drawing obligations / housecleaning obligations that aren’t helped by a rotater cuff injury can in the words of Slick Willy, “feel my pain”)

    I’m sorry, but I can’t find a master link for the Free Range Oyster Posts. I’m going to hotlink to the current one, for my Tuesday post (the hubby who’s the writer needs a day off: He’s feeling worse than usual, and I’m filling in)

    Yes, I’ve read Scott Kurtz’s book (reviewed it and recommended it for purchase!) but I can’t seem to get ahead of the curve.

    Long story, short: If anyone can shoot me a hard link that will let folks find the Free Range Oyster posts in toto rather than any individual posts, I’d appreciate it. carbonelle at livejournal dot com will do the trick.

    Apologies for hijacking the thread.

    Side note: All you indy writers are made of awesome. If I didn’t have ~ 50+ teen/juvie reading requirements before I could indulge in adult SF / nonfic, I’d read (and write reviews) for more of you. As it is: love the FRO posts. Merci beaucoup.

    1. I’m glad you enjoy the promo posts! There is no master page for all of them yet, though I’ve had a fancy interactive web app for it mostly finished for a year now. It was supposed to be my Christmas present to the Huns last year. Sorry. I’ll see what I can do to get at least a basic one put together in the near future, and complete my super slick one as time allows. Thank you for the reminder. 🙂

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