Saturday, January 01, 2011

Despair is a Sin

Tam writes

Dealing with a bout of insomnia the other night, I lay awake in bed reading a Pournelle-edited anthology of short stories and essays entitled The Survival of Freedom. Included in the collection is a story written in the late ’70s by F. Paul Wilson entitled “Lipidleggin’”, in which a dystopian future America has national health care and has banned cholesterol from food; the the story’s protagonist is an antique dealer who is now running a profitable sideline in bootleg butter and eggs.

Now I’m living in a future America with national health care, where cities have banned trans-fats, it’s against the law for me to throw electronics in the garbage, and people are discussing hoarding and smuggling 100-watt light bulbs.

What a gyp. I wanted the future with the flying cars, not the one with telescreens and Room 101.

Travis replies


We have a space station, spacecraft flying all over the solar system.

On the gripping hand, you have to be a government employee to visit the space station. The spacecraft are robots.

I specifically ordered the Heinlein future, not the Clarke/Asimov hybrid.

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