Secrets and Mysteries
What is the Big Lie?
I am an important, unique and ultimately special person. I have inalienable rights and privileges that are due to all living intelligent beings. I am a precious snowflake!
What is the Secret?
The Petroleum Era was also known as the Post-Scarcity Era, as everything became so bountiful that things like disposable everything, and planned obsolescence were planned to ensure the continued drive of the global economic engine. This is one of the tenets of the Petroleum Era that lead to the Resource Wars, and ultimately the Population Contraction of the Second Dark Age.
The new tenet of the Cosmic Ere is that the most disposable, easily replaced commodity is Humanity.
Who knows the truth?
Disposable Humanity is an operating tenet of the Human Cloning corporations, the Android, Gynoid and Mechanoid Manufacturing corporations, and most of the ruling Elite. The common populace, sedated by the onslaught of CogNet media, S3 immersion and electronic vice gratification, and Social Media Cultdoms are no more willing to accept the notion that they are ultimately disposable commodities any more than a citizen of the Petroleum Era was willing to accept high cost and long term durable goods.
Why does the secret remain thus?
Human denial is a powerful force, and this combined with the flash culture zeitgeist of the Cosmic Era relegates disposable humanity to the realms of paranoid science fiction and political fiction. Human outrage is equally a powerful force and the players behind the scenes work to ensure that their products, IE replacement humanity, is seen as inferior, complimentary, or dependent on normal humanity for it's own survival.
Androids and Gynoids are generally physically and mentally at best equal to human abilities, and many are less so. Who is afraid of a robot uprising when the average android is as threatening as C3PO? Mechanoids, generally made to be large, strong, and exceptionally tough are generally functioning with the smallest neo-cortices possible, giving many of them the minimal ability to speak and follow instructions. There are certain functions that machine beings are not able to do, such as phyiscally assault a person, or bear a physical weapon, maintain a wage earning job, or contribute to or experience the CogNet.
Clones are physically marked to demonstrate that they are artificial humans, and the Codex series clones are generally programmed/conditioned to either aspire to human ideals (Pinocchio Syndrome) or are phenotypically designed to be inoffensive to normal humans, such as being small in stature, and of limited to average intelligence. Many codex clones also have either reduced sexual characteristics or are Freemartin, completely sterile and frequently impotent. Male codex clones are marked for androgynous features, low testosterone, and below average size genitalia. Female clones are likewise noted for their androgynous features and reduced estrogen. Clone females are likewise limited in their breast size, with most being sub A-cup size.
The Tycho Conventions have provisions against creating free willed combat robots, creating Homo Superior humans, and sub-human Humans. These are shiny ideals that most common folk know in the same fashion as the Geneva Conventions of the Petroleum Era. Sub-Humans are generally overlooked because there isn't a cloning corporation that is going to sully its name by creating Human- clones. In corporate lingo, these are Epsilon Clones and typically exhibit Downs Syndrome, Autism, and other genetic defects. The cloning corps creating 'worker' or 'soldier' class clones will work with Delta Clones who are less intelligent than the average Homo Sapiens, but are not mentally challenged or genetically compromised.
Some people are simply more disposable than others.
Soldiers, menial and manual laborers, and the poor are considered very disposable. In the field of warfare, compared to the hardware in the field, the soldier is often the cheapest and sometimes easiest to replace component. Menial and manual laborers can easily be replaced by droid laborers or robots, often more effectively and efficiently. The Poor exist in the Cosmic Era have they always have, overlooked and frequently exploited by criminal elements, unethical business practices, and government welfare.
Immortality for the Wealthy.
Some people, through personal wealth, importance, or special ability are able to effectively live as long as they want. Through cloning technology, brain transplants, artificial brains, Engram patterning, and other arcanotechnological advances, a single human entity could survive beyond the limitations of the human animal body. Many of the MegaCorps have Boards of Directors, but these are often answerable to a few shadowy immortals, often a Mr or Mrs with their name on the building.
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? Responses (8)-7
Update: Cult of Done.
This piece has no direction, and I don't remember where I was going with it, or what it was going on about.
I read it as an essay about what happens to humanity when our weapons became more valuable than the people wielding them. And it's good, as an essay.
In Sumeria, your wealth was measured in cattle and fighting-men. That changed faster than our culture realized, I think.
I remember reading once a (probably bullshit) statistic that said that the US government won't spend more than $50,000 dollars to recover a lost soldier (unless its a media event), while other countries will spend less. Probably not true, but I'm sure that someone, somewhere in the Pentagon has put a dollar value on a soldier's life.
There is also the scene in Batman Begins where Bruce is talking to Fox about the bullet resistant full body armor and he asks why the government didn't take it, and Fox says that a soldier isn't worth $300,000 a set.
I like this, the content is very thought-provoking, as I'm sure was intended.
Solid, thought-provoking expose. So in essence, the people of the cosmic era think pretty much like the people of past and present ages. Humans are expendable. The rich and powerful strive to rise above the 'menials'.
These thoughts are reflected in today's newscasts...
lead story tonite: Some teen (daughter/son of someone famous or rich) has crashed the car and died.
..and in other news (brief mention between weather and sports): 900 people were were killed by a bomb somewhere.
Also completely in character for the setting. I'm glad you included the bit about denial in there -- I wouldn't expect the average human of the Cosmic Era to be any more comfortable with the idea that they are disposable than one of the modern age, even with their hyper-commercialized culture. They may feel that way about others more easily, though, and clones are indeed the perfect target for that. I remember a short blurb you wrote about a cloned test subject used in genetic experiments, that perfectly illustrates the whole point of this piece.
Update: Recovered from the Void
A great essay on the meaning of life in the Cosmic Era. Also, a 2013 Muros award winner!