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January 16, 2014, 10:01 am

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The plague of the Petroleum Era, the true bane of organized government

It becomes the Gordian knot, the labyrinth with no end, the bureaucratic nightmare.


Derived from the concept of the Moebius strip, an object with only one side and one boundary component. The famous aphorism is that an ant could walk the length of a moebius strip, traverse the entire thing and never cross single boundary, but still managing to walk on both sides of the strip of paper. So it eventually began to apply to the artefacts of government. One could start walking, metaphorically speaking, and traverse one government entity, into another department, into another agency, and again back into the original entity with no disruption of continuity.

In the Cosmic Era, this is a common theme applied to the Petroleum Era, the hallmark of incestuously grown together government with a very profound non-existence of separation of powers. This system predominated in the late Petroleum Era moving into the Resource Wars. The first world Federal superstates became choked with interlinking, interbreeding government agencies and departments. Many of these systems were in place for no other reason than to ensure a specific amount of funding, or to allow a certain section its own leeway to issue rules and regulations as it saw fit.

Like the hydra, the moebian foe cannot be easily defeated, because cutting off a head does nothing, the head is regrown, and then there are two heads instead of one. Threaten a branch, and the branch splits into two branches. Attempt to defund a department, and there is no way to find the throat to choke it off, there is nothing by writhing necks and jaws full of teeth. The amount of waste was enormous, and quite unforgivably, deliberate.

Retro is Now

The waste and inefficiency of the Petroleum Era is seen as one of the biggest problems, and one of the leading triggers that lead to the Resource Wars, and the horrors of the population contraction, and the Oxygen Depletion incident. Rather than working together to face the challenges of dwindling cheap resources, the dangers of viral weaponry, and other socio-economic issues tied to overpopulation, the byzantine leviathans instead fought to secure their own short term wealth. The systems were too congested and bloated to do anything other than flop about, lash out at their own citizenry, and command the existing military to devour the remaining resources as fast as possible in a desperate bid to get the proverbial last slice of pizza.


In the Cosmic Era, there are certainly still gargantuan fixtures of government, but they are not on a scale comparable to the Petroleum Era. There are also still very obviously corrupt and unethical government and business people who are going to built their fortunes on the backs of the poor, but again, not on the scale of the Petroleum Era. In some parts of the world, the defacto form of government is simple dictatorship. Nippon is again ruled by the Emperor sitting on the Chrysanthemum Throne, and the state elected Premiere of the Eurasian Alliance is very much a return of the Russian Tzarists.

The anti-moebianist movement goes hand in hand with the collectivism, and eco-friendliness of the Cosmic Era. After gaining a new two century stint of Dark Ages is conditioned by experience to have a strong dislike of waste, and wastefulness. Inefficient systems are offensive, and the Petroleum Era style of democracy is a thing of a past.

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Comments ( 3 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Murometz
January 16, 2014, 11:15

I really enjoyed reading this one! Smells of post-modern real-politik.

Voted PoisonAlchemist
October 18, 2014, 12:28
I like the term and the explanation for it. It's a depressing thing but not entirely unreasonable. Someone has really been studying what happens when we start to transition to a post-scarcity economy.
Voted valadaar
January 6, 2015, 14:25
Very esoteric stuff here. Very specialized but an interesting idea.



Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds


       By: Murometz

The food that eats you back.

Creatures of nightmare, the thankfully rare Mesnoi have unique form and attributes. Only one Mesnoi at a time will ever be "encountered".

In appearance, a Mesnoi resembles a walnut-sized chunk of freshly-roasted red meat from some uncertain yet familiar, edible animal. The insidious creature camouflages itself quite appropriately whenever it can, by slowly making its way amidst feast tables and trays of roasted meats.

Once eaten by the unsuspecting, the Mesnoi sinks down to the stomach, reforming if chewed, and begins to lap up the gastric fluids, digestive juices, and bile that it craves, like a sponge.

The Mesnoi carrier will experience mild to severe stomach pains during this time.

After a few hours of this (this is the only time that the Mesnoi can be purged with magic, or other mundane means), the Mesnoi transforms into its true form inside its victim, that of a miniature, once more walnut-sized, pot-bellied, devil-horned, snake-tailed imp. This horrid little creature then begins to chew and eat its way out of the victim from the inside out with its tiny, razor-sharp teeth, like a rat forced to do so via torture.

The victim almost always dies a slow, agonizing death. That much is certain. The devilish imp then exits its victim and begins its seventy two hour existence of mischief and malevolence, until it once more turns back into a hunk of roasted meat with the movement capabilities of a snail.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | December 4, 2015 | View | UpVote 6xp

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