I think I’ve mentioned here before, a powerful image in Terry Pratchett’s Ankh Morpork books: the old throne stands, golden and unsat-on as a sign of the power of the old kings. But it turns out it’s just a thin sheet of gold over rotted wood.
The power of the left in most fields is like that. Listening (second hand, because otherwise I’d have to give up sleeping entirely, since it makes me so angry,) to the Randy Penguin (Yes, Penguin Random House. Yes, they hate being called Randy Penguin. That’s why I do it) depositions brought it all home to me.
Before I started writing for Baen I’d started getting the awful feeling the entire thing was hollow. There were groups of writers on the net, taking part in many author forums, and science fiction mailings lists and stuff. The problem was, they were all wanna be writers. Worse, when you’d been around for a while, you started getting the feeling none of them really read science fiction for FUN. They’d read … nominated stories, or stories that were being talked about, or they read magazines they hoped to sell to. But no one read just for fun. Which I still mostly did, though I was also a writer. (And was having trouble reading books because most of them weren’t fun. So I re-read a lot.)
And I started getting a feeling that the whole thing was hollow. There were all these publishing houses, and all these forums, but there was no one actually interested in the THING for the thing. It was a shell over a void.
I honestly was about to walk off in disgust when I more or less accidentally fell into Baen and found real readers. Okay, a lot of them write too. But there was still a substantial group of “just readers” and “have read all the canonical works” and….
But that is the only publishing house that still has what could be considered “readership” instead of a cloud of people trying to ingratiate themselves so they can break into publishing. And the Randy Penguin thing has just made it clear I was right.
Which makes me suspect I’m right too in the rest of the leftist dominated fields.
It’s not just that they do everything wrong and stupidly, prioritizing ideology over competence. It’s that they’ve already been doing it so long, there’s really no functional field anymore. It’s all hollow as writing was.
Our society is limping through on the…. memory of institutions that work.
Which means when it falls, it will all fall suddenly and terribly. Because if someone sits on the hollow throne, it will fall and fold.
And we have to be ready to…. build under, build over, build around, so it doesn’t all collapse.
It’s going to be hard, and we’d best get busy.