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Saturday, October 20, 2007

FAR Future, Episode 11

Starting with this episode, the “exactly five years from today” setting is going away. The future moves at its own speed, after all.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012
October Surprises

Not much of one, really. There are so many foreclosures in the works that even some bankers (anonymously) expressed relief that the Foreclosure Moratorium Act went through. The same goplets tried the throw the same roadblocks as always, but what do they have to lose? They’ve been toast for several years, and in two weeks they’ll be burnt toast.

That talking heads haven’t even said boo about it, which (seeing that it’s Hallowe’en tomorrow) is hardly sporting. I guess they realize that FMA is wildly popular among just about everyone, and talking about it is only going to be a distraction. Thus, they’re still pounding the fraud angle on gas rationing, and claiming selective enforcement when their own get dinged for it. The thing that got me worried, though, was earlier this week when Shotgun Sam was talking to a caller whining about yet another goplet blowout on the way. “Don’t worry about it,” Sam said. “We’ll win either way.” Then he changed the subject.

What was that about?

I don’t think they could pull off election fraud on the scale it would take to shift more than a couple of districts, but a whole state? Enough states to swing the electoral college? Not likely. I wonder if it has anything to do with those “Dixie Shall Rise” stickers I’ve been seeing on road signs and gas pumps lately.

Are the wingies planning an armed coup? Frankly, the thought prompted me to think about taking a couple weeks of vacation up north after the election. But goobers are everywhere, even if they’re not numerous in most places (Planet Georgia being an unfortunate exception). Mrs. Fetched thinks we’ll be better off staying put, since they won’t feel threatened where they’re the majority. Maybe. She also said that even if I’m right, we don’t know when things go pear-shaped — it could be next month, it could be January, or even later.

It could be some kind of secession movement. Some state reprehensible candidates started pushing this “new majority” theme last week. I spent some time trying to figure out what that meant — nobody’s crazy enough to think the goplets will have more than 100 reps in the House next year, or 20 Senators, let alone get a majority. (Except, of course, the delusional dude they have running for Prez that claims he’ll carry 40 states and 67% of the popular vote.) On Planet Georgia, of course, the legislature has been a majority for 10 or 12 years, so there’s nothing “new” about that. Unless (again) they’re plotting an overthrow, secession is the only thing I can think of that would create some kind of new majority — and I don’t think you can let that many people in on a plot to overthrow the government without someone spilling the beans. Of course, if they do try pulling something like that, Shotgun Sam’s little outburst back in late August will get him a lot of unwanted attention — he could be doing his show from a jail cell (which would be kind of fun to listen to).

Secession would bring its own problems, though, and energy would top the list. I doubt that the government would let, say, the Texas/Louisiana oil fields go without a fight. Then there’s the question of electrical supply; the grids might tie us together more tightly than the politics. Families scattered in different places, Internet links, phone links… what a mess it would be.

Wow, talk about a digression. The Foreclosure Moratorium is supposed to give people some breathing room. Home“owners” have to put their houses up for sale to avoid foreclosure, they avoid bankruptcy, and the bank sets the minimum acceptable price (although the loan-holder supposedly gets to negotiate with the bank about that). Some banks have been re-negotiating loan terms to give the buyer enough breathing room to pay the loan — the bank eats some unrealized income that they wouldn’t have gotten, and get a performing loan on the books — but some have refused to change their procedures & would up holding a ton of crumbling houses they can’t unload. Sure, if the economy ever recovers they’ll have a bunch of valuable acreage, but that in itself is a gamble. I think the FMA will push them to start taking a more reasonable line… and keep those banking execs from getting shot at or worse.



  1. FAR, I used to LOVE Robert Heinlein & I've read nearly everything he wrote (not the later weird stuff)


    Both the content and and your voice are reminiscent of The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. Which I think is one of Heinlein's best.

    It's getting good, FAR. I'm going to start bugging you to give us the updates faster.

  2. Hi FAR.

    Another great installment. I keep looking forward to each new installment to see where it's going.

    KB I used to be a Heinlein fan too. I think I read everything he wrote, even the weird stuff. I sort of stopped being a fan when I read a book about how he hated the fan mail he got, and some of the things he said about his fans.

  3. Hey guys....

    I guess there's a reason I've always preferred Asimov to Heinlein: he could laugh at himself for one thing. I think the last book I read of Heinlein's was Friday (and wasn't that the last one he wrote?), which left me unimpressed.

    I'll try to get installments out a little quicker, anyway. I'm doing OK with once a week at the moment, and now that I'm letting the timeline unlock from "now+5 years," it'll be easier to move it along. ;-)

  4. I stopped I think Time Enough for Love was my last one. Isn't that the one where the rich guy bought the body of a dead beauty (a woman) and had his brain put in it? No, I'm wrong -- that's the Lazarus Long one.

    Anyway, I stopped after the Rich Guy/Dead Girl one.

    I LOVED Asimov -- I read his Science Fiction AND his mysteries (He wasn't the narrator, but he made an appearance as an annoying guy) He was very funny and clever.

  5. OK, Book I sort of hated: I will Fear no Evil. But, I did read Time Enough for Love (there was a long flash-back to early 20th Century Kansas City that was particularly interesting to me.)

    His politics were always a little weird. I thought. And, I think.

  6. The Asimov mystery wouldn’t have been Murder at the ABA, was it? His main character was based on Harlan Ellison, and he dedicated the book to Harlan as well. I think those two had the sort of friendship that's based on either complete trust or complete disregard for what the other thinks. :-)

  7. YES!

    It was Murder at the ABA. Reading it was one of the few pleasures I had the year I lived in Topeka (one of the others was reading Pigs have Wings, by PG Wodehouse)

    I didn't know about the Ellison/Asimov relationship. That's interesting.

    My office-mate LOVEs Harlan Ellison. He named his daughter, Ellison (Ellie) after him. It's a small world, I guess.


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