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Newton's First Law of Conspiracy - Part Two- Harsh Truths
Robert L Minteer
"Drugs? What drugs?"
"The memory implant drugs. You mean we’ve never discussed this?

"What a stroke of genius to engineer that big political scandal in America!"
"I wish we could take the credit for it. But the guy was really that unstable and paranoid. His own polls showed that he was about to win by the biggest landslide in history, but he thought that somehow his opponent had manipulated the poll, and really had some dirt on him that would be flung at the last minute. So he ordered that burglary to find the dirt…and of course, we don’t know for sure that they didn’t really find it and save the election for him. It’s hard to know whether we are just deteriorating as a species into untrusting, paranoid people, or whether the illusion layer is perhaps drawing closer to the surface. But for now everything is proceeding according to plan."
"So it was part of the plan to have him appoint a Vice President who would then take over as President and then turn right around and issue a pardon?"
"No. Again, that was his own doing. Which makes us suspect that he really did have something which he was afraid of being uncovered."
"Nothing connected with our control, I hope."
"Again, we can’t be totally sure. We tried to stay with him every minute when he was in China. But the man was, and is, very clever. And he apparently studied Mandarin on the sly and was able to have some quick, private conversations with a few officials when nobody was looking. He may have even passed some notes in a few bathrooms, for God’s sake!"
"Any guesses as to the gist of any of those notes or conversations?"
"Apparently there’s an ancient, buried pyramid somewhere in the interior of China, under which is supposedly buried an accurate depiction of the structure of the Solar System. We’re not sure if the President was maybe warning them about what they might find, and that they’d better use the peoples’ superstitions to keep them away. Officials could then explore it in secret—and perhaps even alter it to fit with our model of the Solar System."
"So he really was on our side, even if he was a bit out of control?"
"We’re sure hoping so. Because there is another possibility—that he dropped some hints as to what might be found under that pyramid, and told them to document it very carefully, and keep the information closely guarded, to be eventually used to truly benefit all mankind. We’re concerned, too, that he may have given them some hints as to how they could eventually bankrupt us."
"But then why is he still alive?"
"Because we’re hoping that he’ll slip up and try to make some contacts with somebody before he dies. The American people hope, of course, that he’ll be forthcoming with some details about the big burglary. And we’re glad that that’s as far as their interest goes. The whole mess has also presented us with a whole new source of fake conflict for the next generation, between the media and the government."
"Clever. But I thought that the government already controlled the media, with licensing requirements for radio and TV, and the threats of labor disputes or IRS investigations for newspapers and magazines?"
"Ah, but you forget who really controls everything. We let it look like the government is in control. But now everyone will always believe that the power of the press toppled a President, when really it was nothing but his own paranoia which did. But most of the politicians will believe it, too, and so will work in very subtle ways to control the power of the press. And they will just naturally turn more and more control over to us."
"But I thought we had total control of the newspapers long ago. Look at the huge fortune amassed by Hearst and others."
"True—but we almost lost that. The socialist and labor movements really set us back a few decades. They were on the verge of exposing part of the truth about what goes on behind the scenes, which is just the same old story. Power can only continue to be concentrated when there are hundreds of millions of slaves subsisting on near-starvation rations. The American people refused to continue in that role, and have thus unwittingly added to our power. Stalin did us such a great service by working his own people to death—of course, they weren’t really his own people, mostly, he being a Georgian. But still, he made conditions there so terrible that it made it easy for us to convince the rest of the world that it was the fault of the socialist and communist ideologies. The seemingly logical conclusion which the Americans and Europeans reached was that capitalism and democracy are what has given them their wonderful standards of living."
"And aren’t they?"
"Of course not. It’s still the same old thing: slavery. But now the slaves are somewhere else. They’re our impoverished millions of the moment, saved from starvation by good-paying jobs provided by our wonderful capitalist system. Of course, a good-paying job is a totally relative concept. From making nothing to making a dollar a day is a big step up. Then great American and European businessmen can buy these slave-made products cheap and turn around and sell them for big profits at home. Stock prices rise, and everyone is happy."

"Sounds too good to be true. But how long can it last? And how does the continued exploration of space fit into the picture?"
"You mean, of course, the supposed continuing exploration of space. It’s all to do with the continued accumulation of hydrogen and oxygen. Some hints have been dropped as to where it’s all going. But future disasters are planned in blast-offs. This will give the government a plausible reason to scale back. And it will continue the illusion of corporate-government antagonism."
"Hold it a minute. That mention of future catastrophes gets me to thinking about past catastrophes. Were they all orchestrated, and were the people who died seen as possible threats to exposure?"
"As always, much is still speculative. But it does seem that there were a few who began to figure things out, a few for whom the effects of the drugs were unpredictable."
"Drugs? What drugs?"
"The memory implant drugs. You mean we’ve never discussed this? From the start it was debated whether to let the astronauts in on the scheme. There were a few from the start who were deemed trustworthy and loyal enough to be told the truth. And it was actually a couple of them who had the better idea—or so it seemed at the time—of using various drugs to make the later astronauts merely think they had been places and done things. It all begins in the simulated weightlessness on the airplanes. It’s a well-known fact that people pass out from the stress of the G-forces. Well, when they come to they are naturally quite disoriented. And so it’s no problem at all to get them to believe that what they are experiencing is the real thing. However, since they are in such great physical shape, they are quick to pick up on the smallest clues that something is not quite right. And it’s been their ongoing comments and suggestions which have enabled us to fine-tune the whole process."
"Yeah, we think so, too. And it’s working quite well."
"So what about the current and future Presidents? How will they be kept in line?"
"From now on their every waking minute will be full of official duties, all their speeches will be written for them, and all their briefings will be carefully screened."
"You mean…"
"Exactly. They will probably actually know less about what is going on in the world than the man on the street. Yet they will still believe the fiction that they are the most powerful men in the world. And they will also believe that when push comes to shove that they will be allowed to enter the underground bunkers—really, whole underground cities."
"So that’s where all the oxygen and hydrogen is going. But where on earth are these places located?"
"That’s still an unknown for most of us. Because remember, it doesn’t matter which individuals survive, just that it’s our kind of people."
"But I’ve heard rumors that according to the Ice Ball theory of the earth, that no underground area is necessarily safe. Unless we know where the ice is underground, we won’t know what will be left floating during the next Dark Period."
"True. Which is why I think the location is probably Antarctica. There’s two miles of ice there. Plus the bunkers themselves are probably being made essentially sea-worthy."
"Sounds good. But I’ve heard rumors, too, that perhaps in each Dark Period many chemical bonds are loosened—and perhaps gravity itself—so that maybe none of these preparations will do any good."
"Yeah, I’ve heard those rumors, too. We’ll just have to hope that our scientists know what they’re talking about. Yet I wonder—without the most basic piece of the puzzle, is there any way they can possibly understand any of the rest of it?"

"So where do things stand currently?"
"Well, the Americans have had their most moral President so far, a truly good man. But an ineffective President, they’ll always believe. Yet they don’t pause for even one second to consider what that says about their whole system. And of course, how can they pause. We’ve got them all so worried about their future financial security and moving all around the country changing jobs that they have no time to consider much of anything."
"And nobody is questioning why, with the advances in computing power, plans are not being made to go back to the moon."
"No. OSHA and the related safety agencies have done their jobs well. And the legal system is all set to pounce on anyone who dares to do anything which is the slightest bit unsafe. Meanwhile the hydrogen and oxygen continues to be stored for the future."
"Yes, but what kind of a future will it possibly be? When the most advanced nation in earth’s history elects a total phony—an actor, for God’s sake, and not once, but twice—what sort of hope can we have for mankind’s future?"
"Which is all the more reason for us to continue with our plans."
"And those plans seem to include the bankrupting of the Soviet Union and the continued suffering of millions of their people yet again."
"Yes, it’s been amazing that they’ve been so agreeable to that part of the plan. Some of us have begun to wonder if perhaps they know something we don’t."
"You mean about the permafrost?"
"Yeah. It’s looking like maybe all our plans may have gone astray."
"Why do you say that?"
"The Russian move into Afghanistan was supposed to be about continuing to track down anybody who might have known anything about what their space program was all about. In fact, that’s what the Americans’ whole spy thing was about, too—tracking down anybody who knew anything."
"But for years we’ve controlled the media—they could never have gotten the information out to the public."
"True enough. But it was mostly just a matter of tying up loose ends."
"So what’s the problem with Afghanistan?"
"We’re not sure. But there was a flourishing culture there when Alexander the Great passed through. And the Chinese wrote about their great cities, too. In fact, there may be some connection between that Chinese pyramid we talked about before and the Afghan culture. They may know much more than they’re letting on."
"So the Russians are just finishing the job the British started."
"That would seem to be their intent. But whereas the British take their arrogance with them everywhere they go, and then wonder why people always rebel, the Russians seem to be able to weed out the garbage and adopt only those bits of information which will help them. The Russians are still trying to make sense of the Tunguska Event."
"As is the rest of the world."
"Yes, but I think the Russians sense that the real truth will be of greater benefit in the long run."
"So you don’t think they really believe the meteor theory?"
"Probably not. There are many who claim that the Tunguska Event was the earth sending out a vast amount of electrons from its core—so great an amount that it essentially formed the Van Allen Belts, which weren’t discovered until much later, after the proper instruments were made which could measure the energy in those radiation belts. Instruments which, however, depended on that very radiation for their proper functioning."
"And what does that have to do with the Russians and Afghanistan?"
"Well, there is speculation that what brought on the development of both the Russian and American space programs was nothing more than a visible light in those Van Allen Belts—a light which convinced both that the other had put a missile in orbit. The Russians were intrigued, thinking the Americans were pursuing Truth, while the paranoid Americans assumed that the Russians were getting set to launch nuclear missiles and take over the world. Vive la difference! For it’s been those two opposing attitudes which has enabled us to benefit from just about every financial transaction made in the world. Loss, gain, buy, sell, inflation, contraction, it’s all the same to us."

"And much of that profit is put into the separation and stockpiling of hydrogen and oxygen."
"Right. Just think of the simplicity of it. Electricity is used to separate water into hydrogen and oxygen. Those will provide the necessary heat and light during the next Dark Period. It’s believed that they can also be recombined into water if necessary, and that such a process will give off electricity, although it has yet to be done in the laboratory. It’s so obviously the process in nature that it’s incredible that people still believe the whole water cycle theory. Yes, the sun evaporates great quantities of water from the surface of the oceans. But once up in the atmosphere high enough the gaseous water molecules separate into oxygen and hydrogen. Then, cooling and falling back towards the surface, under the right conditions they recombine into ice crystals. That process gives off electricity which is visible as lightning in the clouds. The flashes which come to the ground are excess hydrogen being burnt off. That flash burning produces the ozone, which floats back up to form that layer which protects us, supposedly, from solar radiation."
"And of course that solar radiation may be coming from far away, or may be a reflection from deep within the earth."
"Right—but the results are the same."
"And what about the recently detected holes in the ozone layer over Antarctica?"
"Yes, I’ve asked that question many times myself, and have never gotten a definite answer. It’s either that the Americans have gotten greedy at the South Pole and have felt the need to stockpile extra oxygen, or else it’s just a natural process. Nobody knows. Since ozone itself wasn’t discovered until 1840, we don’t know if it wasn’t there before, or if people just weren’t looking. And really, such is the case with so many of our discoveries and so-called inventions. But the timing of the discoveries or so-called synthesis of many of the radioactive elements has most of us thinking that most of what is going on are natural processes beyond our control. So the greedy Americans seem to be off the hook for that one."
"I’ll be interested to see what new elements are discovered in the next decade."
"As will be all of us. The question that remains is: are we approaching a limit, or will there be yet another row in the periodic table of elements?"

"So where did this guy come from?"
"That’s a good question. Actually, he’s just a guy who sort of slipped through the cracks and past the radar, so to speak. He knew quite a bit of the whole Prince Charming story—nobody really knows whether he was involved in any of the planning, or whether he just sort of overheard some of the planning and then was allowed to be included. But he has been loyal and kept his mouth shut. Yet it seems he’s conceived of himself as some big-time spy just because he was appointed to head one of the big spy agencies. He hasn’t figured out yet—as most of them haven’t—that very rarely do any of their appointments have anything to do with any of the few, small talents they may have."
"OK. That explains where he came from. But what function does he serve now?"
"Oh, none in particular. He actually started making noises about telling some of what he knows to what he figured would be the right people. Well, it would have been so easy to get rid of him—but we figured hey, why not string him along. And by seeing who he brought in as his administration, we’ll have a good idea of who to look out for and exclude when it’s time to start going into the underground cities."
"But couldn’t that have been determined some other way?"
"Probably. But this seemed more fun. He made some mild threats, and when we appeared to give in to them, he insisted that we make sure one of his kids got the same treatment in a few years. So we said sure, why not? So he takes over and starts off with a real popular military campaign, then we manipulate the economy, the people blame him, and he’s out—a one-termer. And his kid will get the same treatment—but even worse, since things will be getting very close to the next Dark Period."
"But if you’re so sure of that, how come none of the scientists ever figured it out?"
"Because of the educational system we have in place. Everything is so specialized and complex. If a kid shows any aptitude in school for math or science we stroke him and steer him into a high-paying career. With the debts he accumulates getting through college, he must work long and hard to get it paid off. But then we promote him and move him around the country, which just gets him further in debt. And all the while, what is his work all about? Maybe the spin of one electron in one shell of one atom. Or perhaps how to optimize one part of a reaction in the manufacture of one insignificant bit of plastic for use in a variety of applications. In short, they’re all so busy studying one leaf of one tree that it’s basically impossible that they will ever see the forest, and even if they did they wouldn’t have a clue what they were looking at."
"Great. So what is really happening? What really is the forest?"
"Well, it’s all about the winding down of either the core of the earth or of the sun itself, whichever of the two possibilities turns out to be true—Self-Contained Ice Ball or Curved-Line Gravity Well."
"So it has proven impossible to tell which it is? Surely there must be some differences which would manifest themselves."
"That’s what was originally thought. But all that’s ever happened is that many dozens of more complicated scenarios have been formulated which fit the facts pretty well. But that’s always been the problem down through history—more and more complications. We figure that one of the two simplest possibilities is probably correct: or, even more likely, a synthesis of the two, which makes no sense with our current knowledge, but which hopefully will after the next Dark Period passes."
"But who will be the slaves then? How will anything get done? If only our type of people make it through, we would all starve in a month."
"Clones, of course."
"Get real—that hasn’t even worked with sheep."
"That, of course, is what we expect people to believe."
"Oh. Well, OK, so what is happening with the formation of new elements, and how does it all fit with the idea of the earth or sun winding down."
"Any idea when Uranium was first discovered?"
"What does that have to do with anything?"
"Just humor me a little. The answer will no doubt surprise you, and would be the main key to unlock the puzzle, if people would just open their eyes."
"OK. Well, probably in the ‘30s, not long before the bomb was developed. No, wait, I’ve got it. Right around the turn of the century—Madame Curie."
"And that’s what most people would think. But Uranium was discovered in 1789. And who has always been credited with the discovery of electricity?"
"Easy. Benjamin Franklin."
"Very good. But there had always been thunder and lightning, so we’ve always thought. But why were the witches tried at Salem. Partly for causing such frightful thunderstorms. Perhaps it was a new phenomenon. But we’ve already seen that lightning strikes are burning hydrogen. Apparently what began happening a couple hundred years ago was that as the core began to wind down, the smallest and largest bits of matter began to be spit out—either genuinely from the sun down the gravity well to our planet, or else up through the ocean and then settling back to earth. First all the leftover electrons. Magnetism—the lodestone—had been known since ancient times. But electromagnetism was not discovered until 1819. And copper had been known also since ancient times, but apparently never contained an extra abundance of electrons. In fact it may only be the metals which truly contain electrons. At any rate, it was soon figured out that spinning magnets could induce the electrons to flow though metals. This is a natural process that could easily be available in sufficient quantity for all people on earth. But we’ve made it into a huge money-making operation, and rather than let everyone have it cheaply, we’ve contrived to cause so-called shortages, blackouts and brownouts. Plus we’ve used huge amounts of it to make all these other chemicals which we make lots of profits from. And we’ve used lots of electricity to produce hydrogen and oxygen from water."
"So will the supply of electrons ever run out?"
"Nobody knows for sure if they ever disappear or if they just move around. But it seems likely that since they were formed from nuclear fusion, that when fission occurs, the electrons get used up. Think of it this way. When hydrogen becomes deuterium and then ever heavier hydrogen in the core, the electrons that were part of the original hydrogen are freed. When the super-heavy hydrogen was spit out from the core, it first appeared as Radium, in 1898. What we perceive as radiation is nothing more than elements without electrons splitting apart and absorbing electrons, in a sense."
"So all our nuclear power plants that produce electricity are really hastening the disappearance of the electrons themselves, thus hastening the arrival of the next Dark Period?"
"Maybe, although it’s doubtful that anything Man has ever done has affected the basic processes of the earth to any noticeable degree—that’s sheer arrogance on Man’s part. No, the elements would have recombined at the same rate regardless. Because, actually, the concentration of Uranium and Plutonium into quantities large enough to produce the heat required in a nuclear power plant have reduced the surface area of those elements, and so reduced the rate at which they can re-absorb electrons. At least, that is, until the waste by-products are formed. Those may then absorb more for awhile, thus restoring the original equilibrium. All man is left with is poisons far more toxic than the coal and oil smoke which nuclear power was intended to alleviate."

"So what was next after Radium?"
"Actinium in 1899, next Protactinium in 1917. Thorium had been known since 1828, but was not radioactive, apparently, until later. There is still some debate on those points. Some hold that even Uranium was not always radioactive, and not until sufficiently concentrated did it gain its radioactivity. And that idea has been supported by the fact that many people did live close to rather large concentrations of Uranium, but with no ill effects until much more recently. Then still others argue that it wasn’t until the atoms were supposedly split in the laboratory that poisonous radiation was produced—the alpha, beta, and gamma particles which destroy or mutate human cells. But what is most likely is that these smaller particles only came into existence with the continued deterioration of the core. They seemed to be produced by splitting atoms—but really it was only the increased strength of various metals which allowed a strong enough implosion to be produced to squeeze the atoms close enough to produce the effects seen. Remember that as recently as 1912 the quality of steel was so poor that The Titanic cracked in the cold waters of the North Atlantic. It’s a vicious circle, which Man is really only observing, and not in any significant way affecting. But again, his arrogance makes him claim to have synthesized various radioactive elements. They simply were not known previously because they didn’t exist on or near the earth’s surface previously."
"Wow. It’s all so simple, and makes so much sense. But the scientists have complicated it beyond belief."
"And all to our benefit, of course. The next, but probably most significant discovery, was of Francium in 1939. This is the radioactive alkali metal. All the previous alkali metals are very unstable, and even explosive or otherwise deadly in combination with oxygen or other common elements. But when the end of the row in the periodic table is reached, another deadly element is found which combines with the first to produce some harmless, or in many cases extremely useful or even essential compounds—particularly ordinary salt, Sodium Chloride. Since then most of the rest of the elements in the radioactive row have appeared, right on through the so-called synthesis of the element with atomic number 110 just this year. The rest will probably follow rather quickly, and as soon as number 117 starts appearing, it will start to combine with the Francium to form some sort of stable compound, which will likely form a layer all around the earth as did the previous combinations."
"And what will happen then?"
"Of course nobody knows for sure, but one theory is that the electrons will be pulled up into that layer. In fact, according to that theory, at the end of each previous Age, before the formation of the new stable layer and the making of the next row of elements, there was an Electric Age. Whether or not any society ever managed to make use of the electric power that was there is a matter of debate. It seems unlikely, however. Man was so ignorant and superstitious that he made a story of Prometheus obtaining fire from the gods. And other cultures have tales of what seem to be electric effects, but the metallurgy wasn’t up to making wire to carry the electrons. But others think that perhaps there is a very simple, yet very effective way of utilizing the electrons—one which we are overlooking."
"What about photovoltaic cells? Aren’t they powering the Space Shuttles?"
"To some extent, but not a very great one. They just aren’t very efficient or cost-effective. It’s actually cheaper to carry LP gas into space, which is about all that liquid hydrogen is. Basically they just put a little solid rocket fuel in a separate compartment, and then use it as fuel, and the oxygen for breathing, of course."
"And still nobody wonders why, with the advances in computer speeds, that people aren’t already living on the moon."
"Yeah, that is kind of crazy. It’s so obvious that if we could go, we would have self-sufficient domed cities there already. Of course, we just blame it on politics and safety, and everybody believes it."
"So will the new Space Station be used as an attempt to really go?"
"Eventually that is the hope. But first we’ve got to be able to tell where the moon really is. So far no gravity-measuring device has been made. It was hoped that the Hubble telescope might give some clues as to the moon’s and stars’ actual directions, but so far nothing. It’s giving lots of pretty pictures, however."
"Yeah, but let’s just hope that people don’t start clamoring for posters of the Lunar Landing Sites. They might be hard to fabricate."
"No, such fabrication would actually be fairly easy. You’ve seen some of the movies being made entirely by computer. Soon high-paid actors will be a thing of the past. And there is talk of making a whole series of trips to the moon on computer, and maybe even Mars. Then some domed cities could be shown being set up. But there is, of course, the worry of involving too many people. So what is more likely is an early re-entry and burn-up of the Space Station, and then a cancellation of any more such attempts for the indefinite future."
"Really. What do the Russians have to say to that? They seem keen on space tourism, and think it’ll be a great way to make money."
"Which is just one more reason that the U.S. wants to scrap the whole thing. They don’t want the Russians out-doing them in the money-making department."

"I suppose you’re going to claim that none of us was involved in the little set-back for the Port Authority?"
"Of course we weren’t directly involved. But of course we also knew it would happen eventually. After their last attempt, it was only a matter of time. But we really thought they’d get some explosives in underground again. We had reinforced the basements so that anything short of a nuke would have been contained."
"But such an explosion still would have gotten rid of all the documents having to do with Prince Charming’s assassination. Brilliant. They were obliterated in the fires, weren’t they?"
"Oh yeah. Them and thousands of other documents and computer files relating to the Port Authority’s involvement and profiteering from the World Trade Organization. Whoever did it really did us a favor."
"And there’s no way it could have been done by remote control, as has been speculated? Or that the tail of the plane that crashed a few days later was sliced off by some sort of sound-wave device?"
"As always, there’s no way to be absolutely sure. But the former President did such a good job of making enemies-for-life of tens, even hundreds, of millions of Muslims around the world, that we’re pretty sure of keeping the military machinery humming for the next fifty years. It was so brilliant—of course, nobody gives him credit for that brilliance, but it wasn’t really his, anyway. All the talk now is of failed foreign policy and on and on. It’s amazing how totally blind they’ve all become. But we’ll probably do it again and again in Muslim areas, if they’ll go for it. That’s the only drawback, that maybe they won’t believe us ever again. But we can still put the stories out in the media about how we’ve liberated yet another Muslim enclave from oppression by their neighbors, and have helped them to declare their independence. Then we just turn our backs again while they’re slaughtered. Only some are thinking that it would be better to arm both sides so that we make even more money in the process."
"Sounds like a good plan. So, as far as the Space Race goes, that’s a closed book, right? There’s now no way that anybody can find out anything to do with it—no documents, that is—and so what’s left in the textbooks will always be considered the truth."
"Well, you’re right about nobody finding anything out…"
"Wait, you’re not going to tell me they made the same stupid mistake they made with the smallpox virus?"
"Mistake! That was no mistake. We knew that the day might come when such a weapon would come in handy. And we could easily blame it on theft by terrorists. No, keeping the smallpox was no mistake. And neither is this."
"Oh no? Come on, peoples’ faith in the system has been pretty badly shaken, especially with all the accounting scandals. And there has even been speculation in the press that most of the economic growth of the past 20 years has been a sham."
"Well of course it has been. Notice that they’re just saying for the past 20 years. Thus people will accept that before that it was all real. Whereas according to the founder of economic theory, Adam Smith himself, the only real wealth is the products of the earth. By the mid-1800s we were really as wealthy as we could ever get. And it seemed that the rest of the world would catch up quick. So we had to act fast to prevent that. Because remember, it’s the disparity that we now profit from. True economic equality would have happened probably by the end of the 19th century—but luckily we were able to concentrate enough power in a few hands so that we could then devise means to keep that from ever happening."
"Yeah, but it hasn’t all worked according to plan, has it? Still, what possible good could come from saving any documentation concerning Prince Charming?"
"We need it so if anyone gets too big for their britches that we can give him a reminder of what we are capable of. Or at least make them think that we are still capable of that. What is more likely is that while they do some checking to see if we really could have accomplished such a thing, we undermine their power base and make sure they are thoroughly discredited."
"Again, it sounds good. But what about hackers? What makes you think the files are secure?"
"Oh, they’re secure. All right. Our experts have had other experts working for years, and they’ve not been able to get close."
"That’s because they all think alike. Come on! If we’re capable of down-loading the entire contents of people’s computers in the time it takes them to send a few e-mails, and leave no trace, what might a good hacker be capable of?"
"True. But we’re not sending any e-mails from these data bases. There are layer after layer of protection, and so many ways for us to detect anybody even trying, that it’s really as close to impossible as anything ever has been."
"Right. But our detection devices only detect things we can imagine. And really, the technology itself is often a hindrance. Look how hard it is to track down anybody in Afghanistan. They can detect us coming miles away because of all of our fancy equipment. But all we can detect is heat, and they can easily confuse heat-sensitive equipment. Perhaps they have similar ways to get into our data bases."
"Maybe. But nobody would believe them anyway. We’d claim it’s all just propaganda."
"Yeah, and they claim that about us. I guess what I’ve wondered for years now is: why the deception in the first place? Why not instead try to discover the true shape of the Solar System and universe?"
"Oh, we’re still trying to figure it all out. But in the meantime, we’re just continuing a long tradition. It was understood thousands of years ago that in order to rule effectively, a ruler’s subjects had to be willing to believe whatever they were told. This wasn’t hard for quite awhile, because life was a daily struggle just to survive. Of course, if you really dig into the past, it seems that that very struggle may have been engineered to some degree by some of the rulers in some parts of the earth. With the demise of the Roman Empire and the ascendancy of the official Christian religion, religion became all-powerful. And having a Book to consult as an ultimate authority became recognized as all-important for the ruling class to have. The Jewish and Christian leaders were quite willing to complicate and obfuscate and keep their subjects from learning to read—the Christians much more so, of course. Then along came Muhammid, with his simple book that all could easily memorize, and even learn to read without too much difficulty. It was a very near thing, but they were beat back from Europe, and some of their leaders corrupted, so that they, too, understood the importance of interpreting the Book for their subjects. Jefferson and Adams came close to getting rid of us, too—but luckily they were slave owners, and so were not able to start with anything like true equality. And now, even though the Constitution is a remarkably simple document, most people believe that it needs constant interpreting."

"That’s all very interesting, I’m sure. But what’s it got to do with the true shape of the Solar System?"
"Well, Galileo, as is well known, without intending to, seriously undermined the Church’s authority on scientific matters. And really that’s where we got our start. By combining science and business, that is, by making science into a business and business into a science, we were able in effect to create our own Book to appeal to as an authority. But most of it is changing all the time. It was felt early on that there needed to be some stability somewhere. And so the basic structure of the Solar System and Universe was accepted as Gospel. It is the ultimate authority to be consulted, or at least people think it is. If they only knew how much time and effort is spent every year to try to account for the little bits of tweaking that must take place in order for the theories to all fit together. It is understood that a more simple underlying theory could save a lot of headaches, but it would also put a lot of people out of work."
"So it’s held onto for the same reason that the Tax Code is never simplified. Jobs and thus more tax revenue."
"That’s pretty much it. The simple model of the Solar System is also adhered to because basically people are too stupid to understand what the real structure might be."
"Do you really believe that, or is it just another party line to follow?"
"What do you think? Would you like to spend any time out there with Bubba and Billy Bob and listen to them discuss race cars or hunting? Or with the intellectual types who are busy discussing the cause of the day or the latest book or movie?"
"But we’ve made them that way!"
"Exactly. And we want them to stay that way."
"But what happens during the next Dark Period—oh, that’s right: they all die, and after it’s all over, we come out and start producing clones to be our slaves. So how soon does it appear to be?"
"Well, element number 111 was discovered in 1995, number 112 in 1996, number 114 in 1999, and number 166 in 2000. And there have been reports of a fairly large ring around the sun since April. Whether the sun be really the core of the earth seen as a hologram, or a real foreign body at some undetermined distance down a curved gravity well, in either case it is truly the source of all our elements. They all apparently rain down in microscopic quantities, and some eventually become concentrated. Some, however, such as gold, generally remain quite dispersed—but we’ve been able to mine microscopic gold for quite some time now. It’s amazing that nobody has figured out how to concentrate it naturally. Anyway, some think that ring could be the beginnings of the formation of the sphere of Francium/whatever. And some of those think that as soon as it’s complete, all electrons on earth will be drawn up to it in just a matter of hours."

© Robert L Minteer August 2002

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