The SFFaudio Podcast #652 – READALONG: Farmer In The Sky by Robert A. Heinlein

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #622 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Maissa Bessada, Evan Lampe, and Trish E. Matson talk about Farmer In The Sky by Robert A. Heinlein

Talked about on today’s show:
1950!, serialized in Boys’ Life, August – November 1950, its about farming, Ganymede, there’s no bad guys, there’s no conflict, no villians, boy against nature, father son conflict, annoyed at the annoying people, takers and bureaucrats, less bureaucracy hate than usual, a little lecture, the senator got him in, ultimately they will fail in life, the evolution in action argument, who is financing all of this, self-financing, the meta-economic stuff, Tunnel In The Sky, a Star Trek episode, boy and girl scouts, girls do something, Patty was a hard ass bitch vs. Patty was competent, Mrs. Schultz, in the domestic sphere, a big surprise, he chooses not to go to school, subversive, very unHeinlein, so scouty, we’re improving, were becoming disciplined, were footsoldiers for empire, a number of surprises, the twins are going to go to Earth to go to school, the Turner thesis, the frontier, why school is not necessary, so much about scouting, when the frontier was already closed, middle class, progressive, urban America, the Baden Powell scouts, the Boer War, you get to shoot at people, what little boys want to do, go out in the woods and hit things, a special two finger salute, listen to the older boys, Brownies leveled up to Girl Scouts, that Euro American tension, the Malthusian logic, pressures back on Earth, building colonies, like America up to the end of the 19th century, the progressive era, Jeffersonians, the Louisiana Purchase, Lions Clubs, Kiwanis, Elks, civic organizations, Paul was born and raised in New York City, I get to wear a belt with a pouch on it!, you have to buy your own uniform, you buy those badges?, you have to earn them and then you have to buy them, I need comics, swear allegiance to the queen, the motto or slogan, god and country, scout rallies, jamborees, an organization what was quasi-paramilitary, get involved in the community, the cadets, air cadets, sea cadets, ROTC, being a grunt digging ditches and burning latrine shit, a career resume, how to become elites, gliding in gliders, pushing people into a system of rank and authority, this is a scam, how did Evan get out of this cult?, I’m going to get my merit badges, coincidence, making our hero a hero, when the meteorite hits the spaceship, alien artifacts on Ganymede, a pro-Scout perspective, he’s lost so much, Peggy has been lost, he’s gonna get Gretchen, bothered by poor Peggy, poor Poddy, killing off the girls, somebody needs to be refrigerated, Paul, replaced with twin boys, they literally do Scouting, field patrols, some doofus on a tractor, they help old ladies across the road, can-do, he wore his uniform against his skin, his bones are in the scouts, appendicitis, be interactive in the world, pull out your whistle, what those merit badges are for, start fires when your plane crashes in the middle of the woods, exemplifying the Boy Scout mentality, go back to the meetings, very American foreigners, the Japanese Scout, Douglas MacArthur Okajima, a Russian kid, the German family next door, the triumph of the American future, a super-dystopia on Earth, this apartment didn’t have any windows, burning the dinner plates, a bad PKD future, Evan was triggered by Malthusian Earth, the Population Bomb, that horrible Star Trek episode, worked for China, too many people, 55 million Californians vs. 39.5 million, the stores have food, wrong about all sorts of stuff, the only version of birth control humanity will ever have is wars, Heinleinian old men characters, one of them is growing a beard, you did your calculations all off screen bud, what drives Jesse up the wall about Heinlein, how often an alignment of Jupiter’s moons, just because it was cool?, a Ganymede quake, Mars and Venus in alignment, earthquakes and tidal waves, astrological implications, what’s missing from this colony is religion, no churches, for a frontier society it is a giant lack, the good salt of the earth colonists, deliberate, they bring it into the war, if the colonists did it on purpose…, nobody else is talking about it, a deliberate oversight (choice), respecting silly traditions, that’s just how people are, they’re all scouts together, that’s their religion, Golgotha, he gets the tractor and smashes Golgotha, Armageddon, the only tree on the planet is an apple tree, and they chop it down and burn it, The Most Beautiful Tree On Ganymede, we did not bring weeds, a lot of things to like, ecology, we know what we’re doing, rabbits, dumb it down, weeds are anything don’t want, marijuana on Ganymede, impressively self confident, got rid of lockjaw, how agriculture is these days, GMO seeds, a broader issue, if you don’t know why you need clover, the scene on Ganymede vs. the scene on Earth, an immigrant lens, the space border, the boys dorm, endless food, food porn, a couple of hints, another very boy scouts sort of scene, captain’s mast, Star Trek Voyager, Tuvok gets promoted, Paris gets demoted, 30 days in solitary confinement, the federation is a nightmare, all of the food was not treebourne, ground food, strawberries, hand pollinate, their bees cant fly,

Listen to this: For breakfast we had corn cakes with syrup and real butter, little sausages, real ham, strawberries with cream so thick I didn’t know what it was, tea, all the milk you could drink, tomato juice, honey-dew melon, eggs—as many eggs as you wanted.

There was an open sugar bowl, too, but the salt shaker had a little sign on it; DON’T WASTE THE SALT.

There wasn’t any coffee, which I wouldn’t have noticed if George had not asked for it. There were other things missing, too, although I certainly didn’t notice it at the time. No tree fruits, for example—no apples, no pears, no oranges. But who cares when you can get strawberries and watermelon and pineapples and such? There were no tree nuts, too, but there were peanuts to burn.

Anything made out of wheat flour was a luxury, but you don’t miss it at first.

Lunch was choice of corn chowder or jellied consomme, cheese souffle, fried chicken, corned beef and cabbage, hominy grits with syrup, egg plant au gratin, little pearl onions scalloped with cucumbers, baked stuffed tomatoes, sweet potato surprise, German-fried Irish potatoes, tossed endive, coleslaw with sour cream, pineapple and cottage cheese with lettuce. Then there was peppermint ice cream, angel berry pie, frozen egg nog, raspberry ice, and three kinds of pudding—but I didn’t do too well on the desserts. I had tried to try everything, taking a little of this and a dab of that, and by the time desserts came along I was short on space. I guess I ate too much.

so good at it,

The first supper was mushroom soup, baked ham, roast turkey, hot corn bread with butter, jellied cold meats, creamed asparagus, mashed potatoes and giblet gravy, spinach with hard boiled egg and grated cheese, corn pudding, creamed peas and carrots, smothered lettuce and three kinds of salad. Then there was frozen custard and raisin pudding with hard sauce and Malaga and Thompson grapes and more strawberries with powdered sugar.

Besides that you could drop around to the kitchen and get a snack any time you felt like it.

lumberjack food, tilling the fields, planetary disaster, on a scale that’s hard to replicate, rain and snow, sublimation, Fritz Leiber’s A Pail Of Air, the bowels of a skyscraper, endless layers of blankets, an amazing story, if you’re Pluto, Titan’s atmosphere, liquid methane or nitrogen lakes, from its semi-terraformed state to its original state, -70 fahrenheit to -20 fahrenheit, this is an awesome book, the tacked on ending (was good!), the whole sister killing thing, the father – son conflict, Anne and George, call me Bill, a modern civilization thing?, he calls him Dad to us, he addresses him as George, a formal relationship, never?, you knew her name but you never used it, if you want to make a point, just mom and dad, almost never, running a business, focuses the relationship with the customer, its about power, you get a name before your parents get name, if certain circumstances apply, maturity and growing up, being a caregiver to your parents, asserting power, he’s right a lot, his dad is an incompetent cook, wasting rations, he lapses, growing up with depression era parents or grandparents, the household books, little Billy’s bike got a puncture, everything gets recycled, you scrape that bowl to the bottom, money doesn’t grow on trees, I just want to have an allowance like all my friends, that Golgotha rock, the same thing happens to his uniform, the rubber pillow, it was all rags, he cut off all the badges but he threw away the uniform, a home-made patch, imagining a sash, symbolically interesting, his merit badge exams, a maturing metaphor, the Soviet WWII veterans for VE day, so many badges they have to put it on both sides of their chests, grade inflation, give em another badge, I’m subverting the boy scouts, man, you can just be a farmer, Evan Lampe needs to do a Heinlein readthrough as a podcast, themes and hobby horses, like Philip K. Dick and H.P. Lovecraft, Between Planets, who your audience is, older and later?, Blue Book Magazine, not the onlt thing he wrote for Boys’ Life, Tramp Space Ship, the literal inspiration for Tribbles, Flat Cats, Space Family Stone, The Rolling Stones, a space opera radio drama, a used space ship, industrious children, Europa is next, Pigs Is Pigs by Ellis Parker Butler [not O. Henry], an unlimited amount of guinea pigs, hence the tribbles, Tenderfoot In Space is set on Venus, Tenderfoot -> Eagle Scout, you can wield a hatchet without killing anyone, the new scout handbook, all girls troops in the BSA, not a merger, trans scouts of America, atheist scouts, a list of things scouts need to be, you cant be reverent if you’re irreverent, a vocal atheist, tiger cubs (kindergarten), early indoctrination, Red Dawn (1984) is a very Heinleiny movie, strong women still subservient to the men, no line marriages, the Mongols, Cubans parachuting in to Colorado, the Nicaraguans and the Cubans take over the United States, they can camp all weekend, you’re never gonna catch my sons, out there in the woods and they are Eagle Scouts, a weird analogy for Afghanistan, the North Koreans invaded the United States, for movieland reasons, an Australian remake of Red Dawn [Tomorrow, When The War Began (2010)], we people of the hardscrabble lands know how to take are of ourselves, obedience to authority, love of country and love of the countryside, faking the homeless experience, the war experience, a lot of marching, a line of guys walking into the forest, WWII was a lot like being homeless, but with hot food, without the political an historical context, looking through the catalogue, there was something wrong about it from the beginning, there’s no boy scout tax, pre-pandemic, cadets standing in uniform outside of grocery stores, food banking, bottle drives, trying to sell oil change certificates, child labour sucks, rich families buy all the girl scout, cookies, a troop of boy scouts in the girl scouts, its not fair, when she’s selling cookies, book points, government bureaucracy, pioneers need good neighbours vs. absolute self-reliance, specialization is for insects, no good waiting for the government to provide soil, his straw man, Noisy, he never gets his revenge, kids today don’t understand violence [says old man Jesse], getting over it vs. turning the other cheek, Hank was the bad guy, go over the speed limit and lie about it, he eventually is the ally, go and hang out with the captain, Heinlein is so good, the same kid, they do the same things, tons of pets, i can’t give you my fish, the horse in Between Planets, the girls are irrational, our hero Billy or William is oblivious to girls, more oblivious, put them in a bag, is he wrong?, girls and boys should be put in a bag, the German household next door, the family stuff, George drops it, Bill pouts until he gets his way, George drops it again, Bill pouts again, leave his son behind, people are not one thing no matter what you are, bad at communication, Ann and George, Have Space Suit—Will Travel, no cupboards, our kind of food, processed food, the bounty planet, living formally, good characterization, so neat with some of his straw men, the dad was so intent on Bill going to school, get everything he could out of Earth, be a professor like his dad, the step-relationship, so many separations, until she is refrigerated, how much happens, how good the writing is, skillfully done, entertaining and interesting, for novels Jesse likes Heinlein best, somebody online said it was a bad book [correction: Joachim Boaz said it was a “blah” book], really good philosophy stuff, the crystals, he can’t see what’s in the cave, it seems to have legs, 38 legs, tractor?, spaceship hangar, the world is open, really really good, top notch, atmosphere plant, our slow space program, the Voyager probes, the ruined planet is the asteroid belt, a petty hobby horse, regular intervals of planets and then this missing one, its a mystery, one more point of science, back to back to back, 40 novels tons of short stories, in Requiem, Tenderfoot In Space, is there a more American author than Heinlein?, Hemingway is international, Mark Twain, Hemingway is cosmopolitanism, the soil of Missouri, a fetish for Joan of Arc, James Fennimore Cooper, the modern stuff, a fetish for the new, H.P. Podcraft’s episodes on Voltaire’s Candide, hilarious all the way through, not a commercial product in the same way as a lot of stuff, Evan’s restrictions, a leading candidate, mainstream writers, Steinbeck, Heinlein’s speaking to a lot of issues those guys don’t do, the power plants, atomic power, an atmosphere shield, fusion? the radiation level on Ganymede is too high for humans, a little handwavy, Rocket Ship Galileo, there’s Nazis on the Moon!, sub-Antarctic French islands, Space Nazis!, fight the Nazis on the fucking moon!, the frontier and the sea, following where the text take him, libertarianism, in some respects it is gross, Reason TV, a mock libertarian PBS, approx 70%, Fraggles: “you have right to put anything in your body”, SOCIALISM!, free speech, associating with neighbours, hospitalizations, there’s no mention of pay, the community pays, the barn raising, a cooperative nature, cooperative clans, I was promised X, Y, and Z, I refuse to do work, we will feed your family, you can go eat rocks, he’s an adult he can fend for himself, personal responsibility to stop the drug war in Central and South America, straw men characters, given we have to deal with people, reason with them, the alternative is violence or shunning or deporting or locking them up, excessive, he broke the prime directive, this water planet was being ruined by their own environmental policies, solitary for 30 days!, Pen Pals, the Prime Directive loophole, lots of people on Voyager who have no rank, she takes orders from Harry Kim, the Doctor doesn’t have a rank, Neelix doesn’t have a rank, Kes didn’t have a rank, not passengers, Maquis badges, helpful for us as viewers, who are you new actor of the week?, Chakotay’s side, we’ve transitioned out of this episode, some good episodes of Enterprise, stupid decisions, a country and western theme instead of some horns?, a whole bunch of mistakes, savoring Voyager, Red Letter Media on Star Trek The Next Generation, The Naked Now, Darmok, The Inner Light, ideas, they’d have to make it way stupider, the value of boy scouts, commanding voice, be prepared, punch that little kid in the face several times, the environmental disaster, a novel structure, how the gravity works, gravity plates, the gravity plates never turn off, TV is not smart enough to handle what Heinlein’s putting down, Red Planet, a case for a kissing book, Take Back Your Government, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, Tunnel In The Sky, Star Beast, Job: A Comedy Of Justice, Sixth Column, Anarchaos by Donald E. Westlake, The Puppet Masters, Beyond This Horizon, The King Of The Mazy May by Jack London, Nothing Ever Happens On The Moon, The Rolling Stones, Roadwork by Richard Bachman, Gullivar Of Mars.

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Boys' Life August to November 1950 - Satellite Scout by Robert A. Heinlein

Farmer In The Sky by Robert A. Heinlein

FARMER IN THE SKY by Robert A. Heinlein

Danny Flynn cover art for FARMER IN THE SKY by Robert A. Heinlein

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The SFFaudio Podcast #644 – READALONG: Martians Come In Clouds by Philip K. Dick

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #644 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Marissa Vu, and Evan Lampe a talk about Martians Come In Clouds by Philip K. Dick

Talked about on today’s show:
Fantastic Universe, June – July 1953, read before?, Second Variety and Other Stories, moments used in The World Jones Made, gelatinous blobs, xenophobic violence, overtly political, the translated titles, Philip K. Dick’s submitted title “The Buggies”, the memorability of the stories, how important it is for the story, a pretty simple story, sits his kid down, kid goes for a walk, he sees a buggie, they kill a buggie, what the father saw, his reaction, if we cut out the whole middle section that would change the story radically, why cant we assume the martians are speaking to all the people, a lot darker, how its supposed to be read, its not about the boy, everybody is the same way, the Philip K. Dick rhetorizer, “Rigid”, newspapers, of the period, familiar, finding the title, the canned dutch ham, a very Philip K. Dick move, the couch, where Philip K. Dick lived in Berkley when he was 11 years old, 1212 Walnut Street, Berkeley, California, Bubber and The Cookie Lady, every tree name, visually inspirational, tree and forest street, Douglas, palm trees, Vermont Street, maple syrup, we are in once upon a time land, Hansel And Gretel, once upon a time land, the suburbs are a forest, garages, buses, even more chilling, mining his own youth, conjure up, where the buggie lands, a shout out to The Father Thing, Ralph Drake, like a dried up thing you’d find in a garage, the evergreens, something moved, a combination of Los Angeles and Seattle (in climate), walking home from school, the childhood thing, spiders with them, it becomes like the world, yellow light inside, dark and menacing, wailing, trees and detritus, “the Ditch”, a tangle of forest and trees, it felt big, explore and delve in, Paul was smol (with big eyes), some beautiful parallels, why Jesse recommends Dick as a writer, what say Barnes, they already tore it up, poking it down with a pole, what?, spider-web, what they see in the bamboo, a tree covered in a web, very nebulous, a giant nest for the eggs of some sort of insect, they eat the whole tree (every leaf), just a little while, 99.9% chance something like this happened in his neighborhood, political, so many spiders in Philip K. Dick, stop pulling those legs off, Phil, feeling awful, so sensitive, super-sensitive, trained by Philip K. Dick, the brutality of the humans is evident from the beginning of the story, grim-faced and trembling, what was the fear caused by?, the vision the buggie gives to our main character, a lecture from his dad, you mind what your father tells you, the biggest whipping, I’ll get washed, be yelly, a whole other educational scene at the end, violence, externalizing violence away from the family, punch him on the shoulder, no reaction, very normalized, dirt on his cheek, his hair is tousled, did he get that at school?, these are free range kids, a more innocent time, the stranger danger is the humans, outsiders coming in, more subtle, I wonder where it will end?, a dying planet, their perception of it, Dick’s intention, the efforts of blacks to get into the suburbs, Lovecraft Country, they’re more organized this time, like leaves, you get out the long pole (aka the rake), gosh!, Will Emmons, what is it about?, it’s about communism, it’s about communists, another Red Scare, the insanity of McCarthyism, from Truman to Eisenhower and VP Tricky Dick, the war, communism is everywhere, what broke the fever, what the buggie is trying to say, I’m trying to be transparent here, on metal disks in the middle of the ocean, fuck off!, get a fireman and burn it to death, looking below, you could put any group in there, immigrants, aliens come in caravans, imploring, begging, permission, mobs and police, the violent culture, indoctrination, if it was an adult, this is how you learn to be a racist, those are the others, see how we treat that person, what you need to understand, boy, like little sponges, your religion, being afraid of outsiders, the programming, numb them to the violence, picnics at a lynching, take you pet to the vet, associating the positive with going out, spay you, the really spooky part, capturing this programming, how you program a society, how you program people, little Jimmy, sad, a tragedy, take anybody’s permission, he should have found the dog in Roog, genetically programmed to bark at strangers, the house came with a dog, a rundown house and a rundown dog, get used to communists, this is a sad story, we should be sympathetic to these beings, it would help a living being, we don’t understand it, whatever it is we’re blind to, the structure does the job of what Philip K. Dick is trying to say, Hartley Construction, Western Lumber, his chest swelling, Frank Hendrix was from Missouri, Jack Green, Green thumped Ted on the back, chip off the old block, coffee, not one damned bit, all aglow with reflected glory, the kid was scared shitless, the analogy of the barking dog, he’s lying to himself about what his son felt, what he does with his trembling hands, a very Philip K. Dick move, blowing smoke in a grey mist, what’s for dinner, he presents something, lets sit with that for a while, another Philip K. Dick-ism, Lena, nineteen hundred and fifty eight, mid sixties, early seventies, what the Martians are presenting, a CBS Radio Mystery Theatre adaption of The Prisoner Of Zenda, commercial radio drama, the ads and the news, a news station with an audio drama, how different the United States is today, the metric system, the refugee immigrants from Vietnam, this failed war, we gotta take out people with us, the communists will gettem, a wave of immigration from Europe, The Hounds Of Zaroff aka The Most Dangerous Game, a White Russian count in the Caribbean, a combination of a natural image like the fall, a “long pole”, what the pole is for, they get torches and more gasoline, pure evil, and everybody’s good with it, a Japanese fighter pilot parachuting down over San Francisco bay, The Battle Of Los Angeles, shelling the sky over Hollywood, what would the people do, people falling out of the sky, they’re spies, the cruelty just under the surface, the Comic Code Authority, no impugning police officers, judges, or politicians, built into the programming, a false reality story where everyone is in on it, the kids talk just like the adults, I wanna see one, I wanna get one, reflected glory, if you’re a person who doesn’t feel fear you’re not a person, you gotta listen to me boy, is he’s old enough, you run, you tell the authorities, inside of him he was shown something that shook him to his core, there’s something wrong with you, you go to church, masturbation will put you in hell, I resist, I’m a good person, a transmutation, curious, happy go lucky, he transmutes what he heard about the buggies, he transmutes his fear into hate and then lies about his motivation, human beings favourite hobby, what about the vision, a dying Mars trope, dead spiders lodged in cracks, layer after layer, where have we seen this before, the Vaults from Fallout, The Penultimate Truth, into these bunkers to slowly wither away, give up that industrial way of life, it is not without risk to bring immigrants into your society, but there are rewards too, that distant green sphere, dried out blind husks, be waterspiders, we can’t have them breeding, your civic duty, stab him with a pitchfork, make you doubt the war is a good idea, subversive, scarier, xenophobic, who is doing the programming, shown pictures of them at school, listens to the TV murmuring to itself, television, the TV is programming them, most of them are already rounded up, the warm bright living room, Jimmy imagines what his parents are doing at home, a frigid wind, reading the newspaper, fixing dinner, the friendly yellow homey warmth, the home being a center of warmth and caring, the garage is where you find father things and poles for raking leavers, the neighbourhood, the things up on the roof, the things up in the tree, very powerful, it seems insubstantial, he nails it perfectly, super-talented writer, writing about stuff other people are not interested in, writing about children, Evan’s show on this story, the relationship between children and parents, Stephen King, more optimism in King, corrupted by society, Project Earth, Tony And The Beetles, The Cosmic Puppets, Of Withered Apples, can I go outside and play with my tree?, newspaper x6, when you’re a kid everything is new, delivering newspapers, a needed commodity, gasoline over newspapers, how newspapers work, if you deliver the newspaper late, the generalized value, as opposed to a book, what’s happening now, how to think now, whenever the New York Times puts out a headline that’s ridiculous, get 650,000 people killed, its in the newspaper, how Nineteen Eighty-Four works, we get rid of old newspapers, you wrap fish in newspapers, you wrap newspapers and fish, dried up and useless, the newspaper needs to be burned to prevent archiving, down the memory hole, the last of the buggies, completely forgotten, a horror story, remember that time our ancestors genocided the neanderthal, the megafauna extinctions, mysteriously they disappeared, as we’re carrying around our knife all covered in blood: “I can’t image what happened to them.”

1212 Walnut Street - Philip K. Dick's house when he was 11

Martians Come In Clouds by Philip K. Dick

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Reading, Short And Deep #287 – Who Destroyed The Earth? by Robert Wolf Emmett

Podcast

Reading, Short And DeepReading, Short And Deep #287

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss Who Destroyed The Earth? by Robert Wolf Emmett

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

Who Destroyed Earth? was first published in Maclean’s, January 1, 1955

Podcast feed https://sffaudio.herokuapp.com/rsd/rss

Posted by Scott D. Danielson Become a Patron!

Reading, Short And Deep #283 – And Then—The Silence by Ray Bradbury

Podcast

Reading, Short And DeepReading, Short And Deep #283

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss And Then—The Silence by Ray Bradbury

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

And Then—The Silence was first published in Super Science Stories, October 1944.

Podcast feed https://sffaudio.herokuapp.com/rsd/rss

Posted by Scott D. Danielson Become a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #636 – READALONG: Trekonomics: The Economics Of Star Trek by Manu Saadia

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #636 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Maissa Bessada, Evan Lampe, and Will Emmons talk about Trekonomics: The Economics Of Star Trek by Manu Saadia

Talked about on today’s show:
2016, a French economist, economic theory, Capitalism In The 24th Century, the other famous French economist (Thomas Piketty), Nobel adjacent, the dismal science, kinda light in every, Debt The First 5000 Thousand Years by David Graber, the bluecheks and their moms and dads, a class of people, the ones who benefit from all the productivity gains, the present, the narrator, Oliver Wyman, Discord, running a D&D campaign for his kid, he was fabulous, mispronouncing Risa and Garak, a problem from four years ago, a fan of pretty much everything, comics, computer games, A Fall Of Moondust by Arthur C. Clarke, a Star Trek sex book, a CBC interview, Evan is a historian, lay the evidence on thick, you need a fair amount, the H.P. Lovecraft thing, writing long, the chapter on the tragedy of the commons, if it was the only episode, the wormhole, other commons issues, a popular book, funded almost like a kickstarter, the New York Times review, Paul Krugman, Isaac Asimov’s Psychohistory, a smart stupid person, he used to have some sort of argument, the class that he’s in, he wanted to be Hari Seldon, a tame soft, foundationally shaking, laying out all the evidence, 20 episodes talked about in any sort of detail, Arena, very light on everything he touches on, the footnotes, go with it, why the PDF is kind of useful, not strictly true, other episodes, an entertaining book, breaking into how different part of the Trek universe economy could work, isn’t this interesting, sorta-kinda-maybe for the future, The Science of Sci-Fi, the Science of Trek, weak economics, a decent freshman class, The People’s Republic Of Walmart, a couple of mentions, use this book as a template, given its boring cover, a very successful book, what did he do right, the prelude, making it personal, why is this important to him?, taken through that, compared to the material in the book, the way you should do it, write it from Riker’s point of view, angry about his twin brother (Thomas Riker), Imzadis And Isotopes, sex between species and with robots, how we never see Ferengnar, Rom and Quark, practicing business, the great scenes, taking bribes every three seconds, this woman is dressed, mother get undressed immediately, we regulate women’s dress, in Saudi Arabia or British Columbia, women barebreasted, the French banning burkinas on beaches, get that burkina off, Rom is very close to his moogie, head on his naked lap, this is very interesting, Evan’s sex book is going to be way better than this book, its going to be great, if this all it takes, a very easy recipe, cut it off at a certain date, there’s no sex in Discovery (there’s sexual politics), Burnham and that Klingon human thing, some kind of relationship, working on puzzles, accept that its not Star Trek, the J.J. Abrams movies, they’re entertaining, what looks like entertainment, its not Star Trek because the characters have the motivations of petty teenagers from the 20th century, so chill with everything, they take the counselor’s advice seriously, Data’s in command of the Enterprise, finally, a weird episode, not consistent, exceptions, the Enterprise D, like Vulcans, Saadia’s argument, the Star Trek films up to VI, Kirk is racist, out of Roddenberry’s control, some fun stuff but a bad film, acting out of character, a fish out of water, why that first Star Trek film feels so cold, very Isaac Asimov, a souffle, very fluffy material, there’s some flavour, way to much time on GPS and not enough on the Internet, the distribution of digital goods, he’s right, government funded military projects, a fluffy outline, who the audience is supposed to be, conservative Star Trek plans, a social democrat, a red diaper baby, who would otherwise support more conservative policies, we’re not the audience for this book, a lot depends on the equation, a modest growth in productivity, the average worker would be making 60 times what they’re making now, the expansion of productive capacity, 500 million people elevated to the middle class in China, inequality, the transition, maybe one day, Paul blew through it, very easy listening, well written, I didn’t expect this to go full Kim Stanley Robinson’s Aurora, this book has disappointed you, he made the point so lightly, in the light of that long conservation, what’s wrong with this book, THIS MEANS THIS, this clip from Sisko and Jake have constructed a Kontiki style solar sail ship, Jake and his dad have a conversation about, I beamed in at 630 every night, you must have used up a month’s worth of transporter credits, making notes, he didn’t get on Netflix and go through everything, not the definitive word on Star Trek’s economy at all, the Star Trek Communist, very Star Trek positive, Trotskyist are natural opportunists, this book is for or by Paul Krugman, on the level of Paul Krugman, Leigh Phillips, Michal Rozworski, the animated series didn’t exist, Ferengi is the plural, cringey, messing up the interpretation of Arena, the War in the Pacific, the original story by Fredric Brown, Eric Rabkin, the imperial Japanese war flag, the United States fighting Japan, Knock, with aliens, a dog knocking on the door, it could be a woman, the only original Star Trek episode credited to an original story?, a metaphor for something that’s really going on, the Klingons and the Romulans, Romulans are the unknown enemy, not so great stereotypes, how the Romulans are introduced, we get to see them as the audience, a lot like something we already know, they change over time, now allies, Wesley Crusher, a first season goof, Jesse thinks he’s a supergenius, boy this guy’s great, Jesse has a point here man, interesting design mirroring, we’re looking at ourselves, that mirror to us, the Paul Krugman part, as the years go by, we can change ourselves, our being in the neighbourhood, we can lead by example, original series attacks on the Vietnam War are subtle, a jujitsu metaphor, what makes good science fiction, distorted mirrors, no preaching, just showing, given heft for the book, Paul wasn’t crazy, the Neutral Zone, conflict free, Trekonomics II would be 3 pages long, dismissed as entertaining, Enterprise or Voyager, Red Matter, the Science of Star Trek, is there a single Voyager mention?, the hologram doctor, a post scarcity culture in position of scarcity, they never use the Maquis shuttlecraft, fabricating shuttlecraft, what can we give you?, libraries, copying data, how does the Federation trade with other cultures, studying for a long time, focused on Deep Space Nine, there’s something economics related every episode, shooting darts at Quarks, money to be made in Fetish holodeck programs, not mentioned in this book: copyright, patents, the reputation economy, Bashir is up for a science prize, reputation is good, those holosuite programs, audiobooks and pdfs are post-scarcity, I get whuffie, the cost is clicking on it, the kind of pay Quark is talking about, crowdfunded?, credits that aren’t real, infinitely abundant, to deal with other economies, Jake Sisko isn’t joking, UBI, Mack Reynolds, Utopia In The Year 2000?, Looking Backward again?, the real problem now is not enough important work for people, guaranteed universal income, Commune 2000 AD, great idea, a good speculation, why there arent guys flying around in their own ships, Harry Mudd, the replicator gap, not full Trekonomics, Sisko’s girlfriend, dilithium crystals, rare materials, Kai Wynn, argricultural products, look good for the federation, post-scarcity food, not post-scarcity on housing, housing justice, there are solutions, podcasts, audiobooks, knowledge, clothing, access to knowledge vs. knowledge, Jerry Pournelle, by the year 2000, the thing that make it, getting this PDF, web-fu, the way to ask the right questions, google has an agenda, its not google, duckduckgo, bing, the scandals, delisting torrents, every day they delist, depromote, artificially promote, preventing access to post-scarcity knowledge, very light, too disposable, there there, as wishy washy, Oliver Wyman to the narration, Garak and Risa, his Picard was pretty good, not publishable, doing too much, some mean and some mean, yeah!, Will out of the woodwork, not the average kind of mean, meanness is important, not something you throw away, Rom is too much like his dad, their relationship, made too soft by his mom, how Riker had only a dad, his dad was an asshole, he’s got the swagger, the sex book is going to be a really good book, how many siblings they have, Lwaxana Troi, dilettante lifestyle, chase after husbands, ambassadorships, anybody can apply to be an ambassador, broken in a positive way, Worf’s kid, a weird sexy aunt, half-human and half-worfian, Imzadi by Peter David, how Riker and Troi first met, when you’re a mother, the gender book, there’s so much there, a great economics book to be taken out of it, a third of the density it should be, when is the meat going to come?, one big mistake, the Ferengi chapter, do they really become social democrats, the Grand Nagus, progressive on gender issues, Rom as the new Grand Nagus, Evan’s fantasy alternative universe, CBS, Star Trek: Grand Nagus Rom, reforms, right to unionize, a reactionary sexist society, with a foreigner wife in a sexist society, Cardassian refugees, how do you effect change in a society that doesn’t really want it?, how most Ferengi are, as long as she’s naked its okay, Leeta walking around naked?, simple, facile, need more Will on this, a Liberal book, where Liberalism starts to bleed into Democratic Socialism, the Fabian Society, the educated classes, revolutionary rupture, they think they’re smart, the purpose of this book, abolishing poverty, the educated reader is kinda dumb, an American audience, written for American intellectuals, I beleive in science, embracing the government giving away free stuff, its purposes, if rich people today owned a replicator would they give it away?, no., what Star Trek is, everyone is an angel (is built into it), how this hurts the drama, this book’s fundamental purpose if flawed, a rigorous piece of writing, a jumping off point, a Trekonomics podcast, episodes cited, 22 episodes of TNG, Unification, Chain Of Command, Jesse wasn’t qualified a minute ago, a very interesting topic, a rich universe, they randomly showed up next in the sequence, I, Mudd, exiled to a planet of androids, they can’t love, swap the enterprise crew with androids, you can download my brain into an android, this is the best, what will humanity be in a post-scarcity society?, a humourus episode, he didn’t watch this episode, he didn’t do a watch threw, except Discovery, do your homework, the chapters, Money Went The Way Of The Dinosaurs, Why Is Everyone So Worried About Holograms Taking Over The Galaxy?, The Meaning OF Work in Star Trek, Tea Earl Grey Hot (The Replicator), Only A Fool Would Stand In The Way Of Progress, Garrett Hardin and the Tragedy Of The Commons, a terrible episode, bold and interesting, how why?, the wormholes a better model, why didn’t the Federation, if they’re a serious empire, this is the Panama Canal or Suez, all of WWII’s North Africa Campaign, Gibraltar and Suez, Canadian peacekeepers, why the US government is interfering in Egyptian elections, Israel’s flex, the Federation really is goody-two-shoes, an unimportant starbase, if this were realpolitik, Section 31, existential threats to the Federation, the Tal Shiar and the Obsidian Order, a realpolitik going on, once you get promoted to admiral, don’t do it, don’t do that again!, I was under orders, O’Brien has to work for 8 hours, Wolf 359, I will have to court martial you or promote you, orders are not mandatory in Starfleet, think for yourself, you should disobey bad orders, in this world they’ve constructed, when Kirk disobeys in Star Trek III, demoted to Captain, Red Letter Media, disobeyed direct orders, he saved the Earth so forget about those crimes he did, primitive societies, Jared Diamond, mocking leaders, all power comes from the barrel of the gun, Mao, fundamental political principles, the Golan Globus Theater, a kickboxing movie, a force of police, you are in charge if they obey your orders, a starship doing busywork, self-sealing stembolts, why Trump was a good president (he was so incompetent he couldn’t get much done), taking away the mask, kick your clown class upstairs and take away their actual powers, you can be an artist, Picard thinks he’s meeting his son, we were tricked!, rock climbing in some cave system, between jobs, a petty criminal, a Federation colony world, bumming around Europe, the majority of the Federation citizen lives, sells is a metaphor, Wellington, New Zealand, a lifestyle career, I’m a professional writer, a publisher paid him no money, learning the ropes, nautical phrases, that weekly poker game, when the chips have no consequence in poker, if they were playing for holodeck time, can’t we play something else this week?, scarcity in holodeck time, all the teenagers on the Enterprise are first in line, there’s no lineups for holodecks, Ice Pirates (1984), sex on a beach, characters who were single children, the Vulcan’s aren’t having that many kids, sexually declining population, Deanna has no siblings, Deanna Troi’s alien baby, lots of sex, both red shirts, human women are too weak for me, Worf’s college years, Dax injures Worf during sex, Ezri, a hate listen, Our Opinions Are Correct, Birth Control In The Future, egg people and sperm people, the way Star Trek deals with birth control, if Troi is on the pill, an IUD?, is Riker got an on off sterilization pill?, triracial isolates, they ended up Irish, a good episode, bangs Riker, a good episode for the sex book, high tech Amish, dealing with pills, your turned off, a hypo-thing, I’ll turn you back on when you’re ready to reproduce, how is this possible, an abortion conversation, Worf is pro-abortion, what the episode is largely about, The Paradise Syndrome, the Indian lady, a son he didn’t know about he wants to spread those space seeds, The Mark Of Gideon, the Doomsday Clock book, The Population Bomb, what’s wrong with the intellectual media, this this this, seize on a thing, telling all their friends about it, keep beating those dead horses, Malthus, the 80s popular book: Our Angry Earth by Isaac Asimov and Frederik Pohl, they’re not wrong, a couple of centuries, demographic transition, 100 years 6 kids to 3 kids, it took China 10 years, too few people, Japan’s suffering, we’ll figure it out, Quark falls in love with a trans-sexual?, like Twelfth Night, passing, fake ears, definitely female, sexually aggressive towards Quark, we should be doing business, she was attracted to his lobes, locked up women, locked out of shopping for clothes, the Ferengi birth rate, controlling female Ferengi bodies, done for laughs, a menacing villain with whips, slavery, sold into indentured servitude, a kind of cultural oppression, Bajorans worshiping all day long, a Thanksgiving episode of Deep Space Nine, episodic, season by season, plant the seeds early, we can extrapolate, matched for the enterprise, equal in power to theirs, what a Daimon is, all of that stuff should have been in this book, all the Trek books, A Rules Of Acquisition Audiobook, kind a long for a book so short on Ferengi stuff, Interstellar Capitalists, half the book should have been Ferengis, and a third replicators, what latinum is worth, no holodeck on the Defiant, a holobunk?, like Riker watching people playing, read books, chamber music, Beverly Crusher putting on a play, Captain Jellico, because he’s an asshole, from 3 shifts to 4 shifts, how cops do it, more leisure time, he can have a bigger crew, have meaningful work, where Picard falls in love with his stellar cartographer, what Riker and Picard is worried about, Jake’s buddy Nog, I wanna be your apprentice, he doesn’t give the money back, the only way to be bribed is by your earnestness, Quark pays the station rent, c’mon man, replicate tons of gold pressed latinum, an act of war, they werent invented but they were around, ends the Ferengi threat, what kind of a threat are they, even Enterprise, when Starfleet was just formed, hidden, Discovery is not really worth talking about, every society has secret police, harsh lessons for Paul, all the new secret polices, Homeland Security, I wanna be droned by women, if she’s a lesbian or a transsexual, I don’t want a white cis-gendered man to drone me, Jesse killed the show, Gina Haspel was a woman (torturer), don’t you want to see women empowered (to torture people), why it was successful book, is that what it was attempting to accomplish?, who doesn’t like talking about Star Trek, he could have made some goddamn notes, brag about not doing the reading, a posturing thing, more tragic, Oliver Wyman can’t sleep because of mispronouncing Garak, Evan doesn’t like being called out for his podcast mistakes, a decent number of Deep Space Nine episodes, 6 Voyager episodes, Enterprise has slavery, all of Star Trek being about Heinlein, Space Cadet by Robert A. Heinlein, slamming Space Cadet, Solution Unsatisfactory, Heinlein is really dealing with issues in the world, Roddenberry is engaging with Heinlein, the Asimov quotes, a positron brain = Asimov, Foundation is pretty fucking weak, comparing this book to Wastelands by W. Scott Poole, if Star Trek Communist did the introduction or foreward to this book, everything is communism, there needs to be see some real criticism, how we get from where we are to where we need to be, 1848, The Communist Manifesto, a layabout german, Das Kapital, most of his history, original scans, people change stuff, and nobody fucking cares, Wayne June has changed the text of The Rats In The Walls, Mr. Blackman vs. Mr. Niggerman, its what was written, you don’t change Mark Twain’s words, he’s busy being a dad, sleepless nights, the queer subtext between Bashir and Garak, sexual perversion, interest in torture, a Garak chapter, S&M and the Cardassian Union, impact play, consensual Klingon rage, Cardassian female head spoons are blue, they paint it? like lipstick, a visual sign of estrus, fighting with O’Brien, fighting = flirting, the sperm people and the egg people, anybody can breed with anybody else, we don’t see any half Cardassians half humans around, it might be lipstick, natural skin tone, watching the spoon colours, Garak being gay, Dukat’s daughter, he’s bisexual, he presents as gay, she’s the only Cardassian, any Cardassian in a storm, he has one with Odo too, overt romance, impacting the plot, the Kira Odo relationship, all of them, Marx book order, the first in the series, notebooks, Das Kapital, Four Futures: Life After Capitalism by Peter Frase, what if Jesse shits all over the book?, I don’t want to make people mad, get at the truth, a good narrator and a friend of mine, as long as the book doesn’t suck, The Sowers Of The Thunder by Robert E. Howard, The Hound by H.P. Lovecraft.

Trekonomics: The Economics Of Star Trek by Manu Saadia

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Interesting Design Mirroring

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The SFFaudio Podcast #629 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Rastignac The Devil by Philip José Farmer

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #629 – Rastignac The Devil by Philip José Farmer – read by Gregg Margarite for LibriVox. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the short story (1 Hour 58 Minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants include Jesse, Will Emmons, and Trish E. Matson.

Talked about on today’s show:
Fantastic Universe, May 1954, no illustrations, a French publication, big long mustache, lion statue, a spirit coming out of the lion, all metaphorical, or a particular satire, an elaborate joke, would make a great cartoon, Fords and Renaults with feet, my Renaut is tired, interesting and imaginative, only for students of the genre, not a good entry point, unlikeable characters, exploring ideas in a jokey way, a satire of a certain thing, a little piece of history, 19th century French adventure literature, The Three Musketeers, making fun of or having fun with, the playful joking, more exploration, particular institutions, Jesse is not an expert on the French Revolution, pre-revolutionary France, the three institutions, political points, non-political points, the last three paragraphs, bad news for Trish and Will, Skin, a substitute for a conscience, Candide by Voltaire, the old evil of alcohol, they plunged into the whirlpool, the discussion philosophical, front loading the infodump, this is a novel but I can’t sell it as a novel, Christopher Paul Carey, this is in the public domain, not happy with it, enough material, more material than The Green Odyssey, a stock for a soup, The Lovers, 1952, the parent of the bug-woman, New Gaul, the Beautiful Land, why there’s so much material here, the Israeli Confederation, what makes the story work, her stuff is in Hebrew, true history that was corrupted devolved knowledge, just another interesting , The Lovers (the 58 page), A Woman A Day, Moth And Rust, World Of Tiers, Barsoom on one level, ancient Greece, Doc Savage, Tarzan, To Your Scattered Bodies Go, always exploring some sort of cool idea, how to knit it together, an interesting book, not fully grasped, The Three Musketeers, he says what he means, the skins were our consciences, the French Revolution is happening at the end of this story, I’ve got quite a gloss on that, specifically a Science Fiction story, changelings, a lot of metaphor happening, fairy tale, eating meat turns you violent, unshakeable belief, the openings, after the editorial introduction, Rastignac had no Skin., reading aloud in your inner mind, having no skin and being happy, deep underground, very very very playful, why are you telling us all this, pulling the rug out from under you every sentence, wordplay, see what the consequences of that are, the King’s Muckateers, three prison escapes is illegal, a chronic stiff neck, his philosophy of violence, an attack on the church, an embrace of the church, what happened to the Church of England, gay priests, atheist priests, we’re all on the same team, Anglican equivalents in Canada, when will the NDP be neo-liberally corrupt, just give it time, everything becomes corrupt and then there’s a revolution, the blood drinking, a metaphor, eternal life through drinking blood, Catholics, not eating meat is common in religions, not made explicit enough, Jesse doubts he’s not smart enough, watching Spaceballs and never having seen Star Wars, Blazing Saddles vs. Men In Tights, Jesse feels like Worf in Sherwood Forest, I am not a merry man, a canon of these kinds of stories, not good at limiting himself to one thing, The Other Log Of Phileas Fogg, just read it as an amusing little jaunt, planetary romance, generations later, different planet, the downed spaceman, a promise unfulfilled, with the six ships in the sky orbiting, why six?, that number is to refer to something, what’s happening in France today, why their culture is so heavily effected, how long a legacy, wash over, a dutch standup, something wrong with the text, ebook editions, Despoilers Of The Golden Empire by Randall Garrett, a spaceborn retelling of the conquest of Mexico, Star Trek, they’re obviously inferior, thus died Francisco Pizarro, there’s no such thing as spoiling it, Frank Kelly Freas, they didn’t believe in spoilers back then, we cant even tell them apart, it writes itself, a good science fiction metaphor gets behind your defenses in a way direct assaults can’t, that’s a metaphor, what is the philosophy of violence, lenient government that allows underground cells, literally laissez-faire, what’s true, free speech vs. actually killing people vs. overthrowing institutions, fish not meat, his buddy, Ssassaror, the changeling thing, residential schools, there’s no exchange, a kind of critique of religion, a Voltaire like character, revialed, exiled and revered, something very basic, daring to be a revolutionary, a free speech system, rejecting the church, rejecting the skin, its a vampire, acting like a parent, a superego, alcohol, in vino veritas, he’s got a skinful, glimpses of light, pre-revolutionary France, powerful church, distant king, nobody’s the good guy, Jesse doesn’t get it, Lusine, husband trying to abandon his native wife, he’s attracted to her because he’s repulsed by her, irredeemable, a conversation that absolved her of her sins, supporting her father, Rastignac’s approval, she’s deranged throughout the entire story, Jesse doesn’t even get the title, cognac, we don’t feel alcoholism, Edgar Allan Poe’s The Black Cat, perfectly, special attention, its actually a satire of temperance, the long legacy of temperance, teetotaling, much better understood, on the head of a keg of alcohol, not an accident, best understood through the light of his excuse, he blames it all on alcohol, a real phenomenon, who’s responsible?, AA, the higher power is attached to your body, created by the government and tended by scientists, is alcohol the devil, Balzac uses Rastignac in a number of stories, a letter that’s me talking about…, perfectly enjoyable on its own, the car chase, infodump vs. action, the jump button, an elite car, Renault because its funny, he’s just playin, people who are in cultures, eternal things, everything is cultural, mutable, a linguistic expert…,

Everybody knew the Church had been outlawed a long time ago because it opposed the use of the Skins and certain other practices that went along with it. So, no sooner had that been done than the Ssassarors, anxious to establish their check-and-balance system, had made arrangements through the Minister of Ill-Will to give the Church unofficial legal recognizance.

who are they, do they have to be anyone?, the Minister of Ill-Will, accuracy in naming?, the containment strategy, if you want to go to Oxford you have to become an Anglican, dilutes the meaning, religious whackjobiness, a more honest system, the government persecutor, Ministry of War, in our self-deluded society, the Ministry of Defense, the War Department, truth in the naming, we won’t launch any aggressive wars, unk-unks, Secretary of Defense, sec-def, just going to the meeting is the corruption, we end up where we are, a news report about all the wars, it just doesn’t happen anymore, isn’t that interesting, an interesting point he’s making, Jesse feels it but doesn’t fully grok it, Jesse wishes there was a podcast that could totally explain it, Will is still trying to grok it, LibriVox, Heel, it needs to be brought to the surface, Easter eggs, a narrative you can enjoy, a bit of fun, this should be longer vs. this should be shorter, almost none of it goes deeper, an amazing dystopian device, biology, an amazing novel, a trilogy or a series, wrong skin, half skin, linked to all the other skins, its brilliant, its your culture, how that even happened, getting that idea into the SF arena, you have to wear this parasite, that he never calls it out like a parasite, interesting effects, biological adjustment, Octavia Butler’s Bloodchild, “Rastignac was sure… something”, it is definitely something, To Your Scattered Bodies Go, amazing scenes, building up a world, he doesn’t have a good explanation, he’s a seat of his pants guy, a core reveal, a Philip K. Dick short story, an amazing thing (and then there’s nothing), everybody dies and wakes up in Riverworld, a metaphor for being born on Earth, Hermann Goering, Mark Twain, this caveman dude, Richard Burton, no satisfactory reveal, genes wanna make more genes is not narratively interesting (it is narratively sad), free floating as true (even though it was false), how many Riverworld books, offered him too much money so he wrote book 5, what the point, ethical aliens, reach enlightenment and join this oversoul, hints, The Dark Design, a pointless war, a point about war, the blimp woman, the only queer character in any Philip Jose Farmer story, has dated Jack London before, secret truth, this book has no point, the ending of Rastignac is really good, so condensed, it needed to be way longer, curlicues and ornate spins, interesting vs. amazing, what people say about The Lovers, everyone looks like a sphinx and is a hermaphrodite, 1950s, 1960s, Joe Lansdale, Farmer’s electric brain, had Farmer submitted a script to Star Trek, a fanzine article, every week you got to a new planet (unless there’s a space anomaly), the planet of the counting coup black people, the plains Indians and the Moors, how do you deal with a culture that’s different, the presenting of a weird culture, because of his electric brain, the angst driving Farmer’s writing, he’s wearing the skin, I’ve been a god this whole time, The Rebels Unthawed, The Shadow Of Space, if you go really fast you gain mass, bigger than the universe, Sketches Among The Ruins Of My Mind, Farmerphile, issue 9, gems within,

Rastignac became brisk. He said, “We go to your castle, Giant. We use your smithy to put sharp points on our swords, points to slide through a man’s body from front to back. Don’t pale! That is what we must do. And then we pick up your goose that lays the golden eggs, for we must have money if we are to act efficiently. After that, we buy—or steal—a boat and we go to wherever the Earthman is held captive. And we rescue him. “And then?” said Lusine, her eyes shining with emotion.

“What you do then will be up to you. But I am going to leave this planet and voyage with the Earthman to other worlds.”

Silence. Then Mapfarity said, “Why leave here?”

“Because there is no hope for this land. Nobody will give up his Skin. Le Beau Pays is doomed to a lotus-life. And that is not for me.”

Archambaud jerked a thumb at the Amphib girl. “What about her people?”

“They may win, the water-people. What’s the difference? It will be just the exchange of one Skin for another. Before I heard of the landing of the Earthman I was going to fight no matter what the cost to me or inevitable defeat. But not now.”

Mapfarity’s rumble was angry. “Ah, Jean-Jacques, this is not my comrade talking. Are you sure you haven’t swallowed your Skin? You talk as if you were inside-out. What is the matter with your brain? Can’t you see that it will indeed make a difference if the Amphibs get the upper hand? Can’t you see who is making the Amphibs behave the way they have been?”

Rastignac urged the Renault towards the rose-colored lacy castle high upon a hill. The vehicle trotted tiredly along the rough and narrow forest path.

Philip K. Dick fun stuff, this is a scene from something that’s been re-imagined, this is an adventure story, a noisy car, dense and foggy, a very peaceful planet, stealing of babies is fine, because they don’t have alcohol?, a whole lot of levels, wanna mess up your life go to the bar and get in a barfight, liberté, égalité, fraternité, why is the Earth woman in this story?, a common plot element, it doesn’t need to be here, it doesn’t add anything to the story, that leads to a way off, spark a revolution, a chinwag about stuff, he started a riot, a promise of more alcohol?, where’s the evidence for that?, that would just be amazing, how to accept the skins, a classic of science fiction (in terms of ideas), adopt our ways, a YA Farmer book, super-rich and yet not satisfactory, a psychedelic art comic or cartoon art style, re-imagine it, very visual, without any piece of art to guide us, a LEGO line, very appealing to children of all ages, epees, rapiers, a coach Renault with a working jump button, a rosy coloured lacy castle, the underground cell set, the greatest LEGO movie ever, LEGO New Gaul, with so many good ideas, alas, but still, Trish would like to recommend a complete inversion of this story, Emergency Skin by N.K. Jemisin, becoming uninhabitable, centuries later…, live cooperatively and save the planet, these people are crazy they’re bad they’re obviously inferior and you need to leave”, on Audible, standalone, generally a recommendation, people are paying attention to this story, The Blasphemers, Phil is really neurotic about religion, semi-autobiographical reflections about things, have the children going to church, Phil’s lifelong battle with predestination and Hell (being traumatizing), trying to find a way to relate, Farmer almost became a Scientologist, you have to leave your wife, Sufi stuff, an extended metaphor for some aspect of Sufism, semi-podcasting life, be interesting, be interested, he’s writing stuff for sale but that’s only half of the reason he’s writing it, he was always working on something, working on your philosophical ideas, ambivalent about religion, fascinated and always searching, uniquely American, specifically intensified in American life, religious freedom, fractalization of churches, some weird religion is starting up, Falun Gong, New York, propaganda newspaper, the counter arm of the anti-Chinese government.

Fantastic Universe, May 1954

UTOPIA - Rastignac The Devil by Philip Jose Farmer

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