The SFFaudio Podcast #762 – READALONG: Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #762 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Evan Lampe, Terence Blake, and Jonathan Manfred Weichsel talk about Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Talked about on today’s show:
get people to believe he’s Terence, J stands for Jonathan, Manfred sounded cooler, just change your last name to Scalzi and all the blessing will come, you can replace Heinlein, this John Scalzi book called Sixth Column, serialized in Astounding, not based on a Heinlein idea at all, the original idea was Campbell’s, all the problems it has are Heinlein’s fixings, Jack Vance shitting on Campbell, psychics and telepathy, well done for a bad idea, not one of his best, major works, thought experiment, opposite thought experiment, Revolt In 2100 in reverse, theocracy, make people believe, If This Goes On is Revolt In 2100, revolts against people in power, revolution, fighting against the forces of prophet, pan-Asian tyranny, motives of the character, technomage weapon, falls for a girl, the movement culture makes the ideology, the change in him, less emotional growth, learns to become a rebel, how people get radicalized: through women, against god, The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, the conspiracy element, the secret society within and a false leader, Adam Selene, Mike, the disciple is coming, enjoyed the book, one of the strongest competency fantasies, this Ledbetter effect, what a Campbell move, they’re genetically different from us, isn’t the US filled with other than white people too?, race is a thing, in the original texts, the whites vs. the pan-Asians, setting from Asian to not Asian, tone down some of the binary, unfixable, Anson MacDonald was racist, tiny brain – galaxy brain, old Heinlein, troll way you want to do it, changes, some city has been atom-bombed, considering the year, it starts when the war was over, we’re the werewolves of this Nazi empire, individual stories were fighting, you can make the argument they’re still there, on the Moon?, still guys in the mountains, people being killed into the late-1940s, ideological true believers, a hand that touched them to make them military, an uprising, a prison revolt, start a religion to solve a problem, a very American move, the turbans and the staffs, the beards, he stacked the deck, pan-Asianism, this less is less bullshit, the pan-Asian movement, Noble Drew Ali, Moorish Science, fezzes, little Hitler mustache, if this was happening in your community, government did stuff, the Black Muslim movement, Nat Turner, a movement out of Japan, the Black Dragon Society, take over Asia, Pan-Asian Orientalism, they’re trying to create a force against European colonization of Asia, unequal treaties, China, an attempt to unify counties under threat, nationalism, a congruency there, civic nationalist ideas, anschluss, an Ottoman identity, Pan-Africanists, Sun Yat-sen, the Asia for the Asians idea, largely a creation of the Japanese, the Japanese Empire, we have to fight the imperial power, they’re bad like us, as a way to avoid war and fight the west, Manchurians, national ambitions, disconnect between political realities and what unites us in people’s minds, post-colonial African, a pan-Germanist, a pan-Europeanist, subject to the master race, propaganda to that extent, not serious about pan-Asianism, Savage Headhunters, Shinto, edge out the other religions, atrocities, the Rape of Nanking, they weren’t being altruistic, the psychology of creating this book, it’s the Japanese, a god emperor somewhere in Asia, they conquered India, this pan-Asian government, the Soviets, Korea, set in the future, flying vehicles, The Final Blackout by L. Ron Hubbard, 1940, the end of the world, Europe is off the map, Beyond Thirty by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the South Pole, a similar setup, blackout and curtain, blackout curtains, they’re out of the game, a country knocked out of the Risk game, right before the novel begins, the United States is washed up, a plothole in the book, buildings, people walking around, it wasn’t bombs, a electromagnetic weapon, Washington is gone, the last flight out, Cheyenne Mountain, where NORAD is, Colorado Springs, tentacles, a fun book, the swami hats, the halos, he can sell it to Campbell, Heinlein operating at the Anson MacDonald level, early Heinlein comedy, the great God Motar, it got the cover, the conversation with the prince, the Divine Hand, silly and racist, funny dialogue, if Japan wins, states make nations, a national identity, folklore, flags, constitutions, anthems, winning in Asia, controlling this vast empire, give it enough time, a white republic became multi-ethnic, the original illustrations, the troops look Japanese, the Hand looks Manchu, scholar hat, more Chinese than Japanese, Mongolian, mongoloid, the five races theory, they’ve got a religion too, a divinity aspect, they don’t understand American religion, just use Christianity, Japanese spies, Francis Xavier, Commodore Perry, the Non-Intercourse Act, Trinity RPG, why can’t you close yourself off, capitalism won’t let you, the Khmer Rouge, the 1st world, the 2nd world, and the 3rd world, unequal treaties, you’re trading with us now, we set the terms of the trade, gunships, they are really good at this colonialism, free trade, snuggle up, after a war, more unequal than others, Cuba is not allowed to trade with the United States, open up countries to trade, many port cities, everybody get their own port, a lot of dissatisfaction, you are the slave class now, protectorate, brutal, this isn’t as racist as it could be, these two groups think race is a thing, you have to buy in, a biological fact, what the theme is, defeated by your prejudices, binary racist skeleton plot, what leads to decline and downfall is a set of prejudices, a native American born Asia, subject to the ray, Heinlein doing his Heinlein thing, I’m different from him, so about racist, police are the same everywhere, will they stay bribed?, pedagogical motifs, people are prejudiced, the summary of the first 2 parts, the Blitzkrieg of the United States Empire, the Citadel, military research, Ardmore works hard, Colonel Calhoon, believes himself to be Mota, or Motak?, he’s John W. Campbell, complete atomic power, selective death ray, a general solution of unified field, well behaved slaves require religion, encouragement and disencouragement, render under Caesar, African American religion, religion is a delusion, Stranger In A Strange Land, so much time focusing on religion, it’s a fake from the beginning, he’s Jesus, the disciple depicted, black and a thousand feet tall, Joseph Smith (not Jesus), doing more than one thing, Valentine Michael Smith, the disciple of Jesus, vanishing people, he dies like Jesus, stoned to death, but didn’t come back, the Mormons get a very favourable mention, a good version of religion, practical, the business aspect, they’ve got good business sense, an infinite money generator, Robert Heinlein being a gold bug, a DC superhero character from the 40s, Doctor Fate, The Flash with a WWI helmet, Babylon 5, not for religious purposes, a Mormon-like branch of Christianity, mumbo jumbo, invent and remember, a short novel, people offended by this, an evangelical branch of Christianity, ripped from daily headlines, slot-machines in their megachurches, come die with us anyway, people die for Christianity all the time, there is a third rail in the United States, American friends, there are Canadian religious people, tied to the land in the U.K., writing for a very secular Science Fiction magazine, make up a Christian religion and say it’s all fake, people would be very offended, when the Beatles compared themselves to Jesus, Dungeons & Dragons, third hand worried, when the panic came out, an American media thing, spill-over, the one with Harry Potter, if it gets to be a big enough interest, having fun, all the names, the other aspects of Mota, reading this in the 1940s, smile slyly inside, he’s being sneaky but I get it, it works as an anti-religious polemic, what makes this a lesser book, if Evan got his away, people would think about it in a different way, tying Americanism to Christianity, John W. Campbell’s All, racialism, using the dopey religion, so religious they’d be wrong about using Christianity, the conversations with the Christian believers, wrestling with using this fake religion, so contrived, For Us, The Living, just ignore Europe, the religions of Iran or Turkey, Chinese didn’t know that Americans were Christian, an Iron Curtain around the United States, closed off from the rest of the world, Donald Trump, build a wall around America, consume itself in war, Heinlein has no interest in Europe, Hitler, Medieval European, a feudal Catholicism, like monks living in cells, armour, nuns, charismatic Christianity, Job: A Comedy Of Justice, literalist, the Republican party, living in Job’s universe, atomic power, the serial we are about to read, fair probability, the effectiveness of invention, plausible, the whole setup is wholly implausible, invasion literature, if we had this setup, so many coincidences, they just happen to…, so constructed so as to be not one of his best book, whoever that is, definitely Heinlein, biggest problems, general acceptance of drugs, magic, the drugs only have the effect they say on the label, you have to take sleeping pills, also I don’t you getting up, konking you out, a naivete about drugs, good healthy skepticism, what happens right after these pre-WWII books, a think tank to help win the war, L. Sprague DeCamp, commissioned as an officer, pressure suits, Astounding [by Alec Nevalla-Lee], is the tech ripe, tech-bro, is there government funding for this thing, Larry Niven and Benford, rods from god, beat the Soviets, same thing, let’s think up scenarios, now everybody has to take their shoes off forever, you could combine liquids and make a bomb, endemic and super dangerous, the Slan effect, reading a Philip K. Dick novel, now I can run the world, that guy is weird, what maleness means, maybe children are smarter than adults, principles, all you have to do is take your hypnodrugs and you can learn languages, he can’t see it about himself, spin-up, he’s wonderful, it’s hokum, man can he write, criticism of Heinlein, sexual politics, the collapse of America, not for the betterment, to undermine things, the society of Friday, Balkanized, royals have moved to Canada, California, Ottawa, never a threat to world peice, a planetary society, the beanstalk in Kenya, she’s the James Bond working for a secret organization, tied to Gulf, in the future of Gulf, a take that at his own work, takes his own piss, time travel pussy one: The Door Into Summer, why Evan needed to do Heinlein for his podcast, he’ll mention other countries, he’s trying to bomb America, bombing the Taj Mahal, mostly he just cares about the United States, practically the United States, he’s so smart and good at spinning up, no impact with working at the navy yard, the Edison trust goes on, like G.E. or Bell, Bell Labs, their existence is there because they’re a trust, wild speculation, you’re given the monopoly so you have to give back, he’s got transmutation, lead into gold, poison gas into oxygen, there’s a change in energy, win WWII with alchemy, a broad comedy, very comedic, forgettable Heinlein, religion as a mask for science, power-play, Isaac Asimov’s Foundation, Dune, is the religion fake in Dune?, planted, a psychology of the masses, staff officers, soft sciences, planted the seeds for that chapters, precedents, Orphans Of The Sky, Universe, the science became a religion, gravity as a metaphor, a secret society, long and too big, the concept is really cool, he takes the long view, six months?, how many years are they at this?, couple years at most, he has only three issues to write it, where did this idea start in American literature, Mark Twain’s criticism of the Christian scientists, diet books, Extract From Captain Stormfield’s Visit To Heaven biblical justification, post-apocalyptic, what’s the name of that story?, many different satires of religion, hardly anybody there speaks English, they jailed his corpse, are they believing their own shit, Theosophy, L. Frank Baum, you can’t say I’m an atheist, having an argument ready, what’s a Christian, take you to their temple, what’s that?, judo flipped them, join someone else’s services, soul-searching, doing good, whatever names doesn’t matter, unity of all faiths, a scientific based version of the theosophical ideology, Muslim cleric in a Jewish temple, the audiences take it, the scientiologiston the street corner, we welcome Christian, play to whatever, they don’t start with you’re wrong, I worship Mithra, The Altar by Robert Sheckley, Two Dooms by C.M. Kornbluth, half-colonized America, a very C.M. Kornbluth story, if Weinbaum had lived, could have been bigger than Heinlein, nobody’s trying to say Scalzi’s the new Weinbaum, Zelazny death anniversary thread, google nGram, his works aren’t in print, locked away under copyright, H. Beam Piper is bigger than it ever was, the evidence is huge but Paul is not convinced, Scalzi wrote a reboot of the public domain book, after 1963, sinecure, go to youtube and look at all the views and compare to sales on audible, it’s huge, I only read free, free as I can do anything I want with it, a certain racial slur against African Americans, the good stuff rises, peter want the better stuff, the bad covers on Amazon are commercial, excised, taking offense by being babied, flatfaces, yellow monkeys, aliens, slanty-eyes, slanties, made that up for this book?, made up slurs are less problematic, thought experiment, Farnham’s Freehold next, pan-Africans invading the United States, The New Sun, we’ve got some white guys we need to hate, the token guy, Heinlien is anti-racist, the character is in the serial, who would die from their beam, the antidote to the racism in this book, lifeboat rules, a prejudice you have to overcome, just take this pill, go in with a ray and kill cleanly, soul-searching, get over your prejudices, promoted instead of fired, took the black pill, have you ever butchered a hog, Heinlein wrote these lines, pages and pages of dialogue Heinlein talking to himself, walking down the street of Des Moines, roll tanks, you’re a slave now, handing out gold, one foot in the Great Depression, soup kitchens, poor relief, Beyond The Horizon, in this era of his career, the changing nature of the stake, ambivalent, biases, dismissing female priests, can’t wear the beard, the oppressor, comfort women, mobilizing the women, traditional, burning the past, no research in it, hara-kiri everything’s to do with face, white women turned into comfort women, we need to liberate women, all hands on deck, salable chattel, 1911, anarchist feminist Chinese radical, comfort stations, a discussion in Japan about the new woman, changing the roles of women, the audience for this, written real fast, writing so much, chronological read through of Heinlein, the development of ideas, not an issue in 1941, the future history stories are under Heinlein, a rule throughout magazines, whole issues written by Robert Silverberg, we need more L. Sprague DeCamps, guess Caleb Saunders is getting a cheque today, recruiting guys, almost every issue, one year of Astounding, off magazines, a quarter of the way through, a future history laid out, And He Built A Crooked House, competence fantasy, Elsewhen, if I was running the war, Civilization with infinite gold or tanks, fun but weak, a pressor beam a sucker beam, the stacks were stacked against, the chess move, god damn them, enjoyable but a weak book, Paul didn’t enjoy reading this book?, the gun one, compare, by Paul, going at it on Twitter, it’s about guns, head and shoulders above this one, silly, a paycheck, I have this story here, unsalable, doesn’t stop him, Campbell’s writing was never amazing, maybe you could do something with this, more ambitious, social credit, post-scarcity, honor culture, a gun controlled society, cultural regulation, also not one of his best, one of the best of his early works, The Green Hills Of Earth, the novels that go down hill, crackin little ideas, he excels at novels, Friday is a really good book, bulky, falling in love with your rapist, a relationship with the guy, some mitigating fiction, your puritan locked down guy, a bit strange, a minor bug, Heinlein is at his best when he’s challenging you, shallow appreciation of Starship Troopers, the classroom stuff, arguing against, engage, come to an agreement, some candidate for the evil party, raise the age to 25, as a platform, get more people not to vote, does the Army vote for Biden?, the cultural perception, officers vs. non-officers, pro-war vs. anti-war, what’s the purpose, explicitly telling you this is for engagement, that speaks very well to the society, indoctrinate, in comparison, to write about his present, a veteran teaching the class, teacher pay, anything that will disrupt, learning things, conformity, marks are a way of controlling, we gotta do way more of that, a weird book, a classroom setting, a very complex book, a poll before the election, the 2020 election, the Army voted for Biden, go talk to the people, 2016, a choice between warhawks, Paul needs to flee, Clark Ashton Smith, a google ngram, you see the spikes, Edgar Allan Poe compared to H.P. Lovecraft, work it to make it work, Silverberg’s Downward To The Earth, 1981, Majipoor, throw in a contemporary of both of them, his presence doesn’t drop like Zelazny’s, H.G. Wells, pushing people’s buttons, not as controversial, challenging, Harlan Ellison, mostly a TV guy, mostly essays, Edgeworks, really bad press, full of typos, shoulda been smarter, reprint rights, number one is Ray Bradbury, he’s part of the curriculum, book guy, if you wanna be big you have to be mandated, Bradbury is safe and tame, he’s not great, he’s good, he’s got real good stuff, The Martian Chronicles, The Veldt, A Sound Of Thunder, he’s all about the feeling, he’s nostalgic, his ideas always have to do with feelings, what makes Fahrenheit 451, books are good, he’s in the slicks, his novels come later, his first movie is so flat, Rocket Ship Galileo, the worst Heinlein movie is the one he was involved with, was he smoking, Waldo, Magic Inc., a messy publication history, a lot of fixups, The Penultimate Truth, the Virginia Collection, full of typos, archive.org, The Unpleasant Profession Of Jonathan Hoag, at a certain point, I love Heinlein, I hate him, I love him so much, wow!, the market is drying up a little bit, that furious pace, that was his job, he was a fiction writer, Hal Clement was a teacher, Searchlight, All You Zombies, he loves the drugs, By His Bootstraps, how can he be so trusting of drugs?, he’s a tech bro, isn’t it the same worldview?, they’re the problem solvers, COVID on the brain, ivermectin, Jesse gets credit for something?, not that long ago in the 1970s and the 1980s, Alzheimer’s vs. dementia, cancer’s an old one, cancer is fundamental, the chances get greater and greater, a Whiggish view of science, revised or updated, why be so arrogant about our own views, historian, Heinlein: Tech-Bro by Evan Lampe, disrupting systems, taking government funding, the French Revolution, Enlightenment tech-bros, how about a 10 day week, the Temple of Reason, we got some good stuff out of that, Silicon Valley, they’re lighting, disruption is good, computer miniaturization, making things small and faster, multi-threads, a legit improvement, it doesn’t scale to non-hardware very well, running cooler, can do more at a faster pace, the software is magic on top of it, your monthly subscription, a Philip K. Dick story, Cory Doctorow, Australia has month, you will own nothing and you will eat bugs, funny on slack, mass resistance to the policy, why do students have phones with them, the Cory Doctorow explanation, the Evan Lampe explanation, Douglas Adams, cell phones looks like crumpets, a mainstream guy, the zoomers have revisited the Karl Marx line, my cell phone is trying to kill me, William Gibson, hacking the gibson through my cortex, Transmetropolitain by Warren Ellis, Neal Stephenson, because they’re geniuses, after whuffie, how good my camera is, how fast the wifi is, how come i don’t have a clip tray in my Windows, better and better then real bad, Mark Twain, the Civil War, avoiding poetry, 100 page poems, take a break from Mark Twain, both very Americans, traveled a lot, wrote for a living, Innocents Abroad, Life On The Mississippi, A Tramp Abroad, a short story that’s an anecdote, A Literary Nightmare, Anthony DeSimone, the story of a meme, feels relief, an early example of a meme, a little rhyme to remember ticket prices, so fuckin good, so clear but also has stuff to say, started out very optimistic ended cynical, gilded ages, everything travel, The Number Of The Beast, sick in bed, bedridden, trails off into nonsense, veers into the wrong direction, To Sail Beyond The Sunset, episode 103, Time Enough For Love, gonna explain something in Methuselah’s Children, he’s his own grandpa, very Heinlein, maybe that’s a different book, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, upcoming slots, Paul’s not available, the first Carson of Venus novel in on LibriVox, it’s different, builds a rocketship, crashes on Venus, a parody of the competency narrative, wrong way Carson, read it as a self-parody, Bison Frontiers of Imagination, Pirates Of Venus, unusual for Burroughs, Lost Of Venus, do the Heinlein, Black House, Logan’s Run, Clifford D. Simak, a VR novel, Lord Dunsany, Michael Crichton, Progeny by Philip K. Dick, (Alex) Pulp Covers, bother Paul, totally racist, still really good, the mom’s an alcoholic and the dad’s a lawyer, the drama of it, the family relationships, mixed African race, enslaved all the white people, all good, he’s experimenting, The Puppet Masters, people in a certain class, different shades of skin, being extra-specially sensitive to this stuff, they’re just people, people are people, they’re all Americans, he thinks men and women are very similar, Heinlein’s sexual politics, screenshotting, raping his own daughters, sexy Heinlein books, they go to the future, skinny dipping, he likes lookin at ladies, missing in Sixth Column, a similar scene, the rebels are all nudists, Heinlein got over it, being comfortable with his body, marriages, he’s right about that shit, people bang more, abolish gender?, nudism in Nazi Germany, body culture, ready for the military, read the back of the comics, if this goes on, many different body types, the cat one, Nudist Camp, gold wire, David Ashton Walsh, just a fascist who wanted to fuck his mom, Mike B. Young, his twin daughters as well, who is going to stop you, Lazarus Long, these are his fantasies, The Roads Must Roll is anti-union, the Canadian truckers protest, as a guy, a guild, not what unions are after, they’re not for solidarity, eugenicists want to take over, create a master race, what the engineers are after, Starman Jones, without joining a guild, stowaways on the ship pick it up by doing it, Lester Del Rey, Badge Of Infamy, be a guild member to use Chat GPT, a class of people, they’re tv writers, movie writers, Professor Coolbreeze, a rich tapestry, who still fucked babes, they’re puritans, strawman the guy who’s a writer of books from a long time ago, do some raping, why does he have rape in his stories, all the libertarian sci-fi, libertarian tendencies, he’s thinking things true, people can’t win an argument with a dead guy without strawmanning him, a skill that people lack, what people read, formulaic stories, maybe challenging, Jonathan is a writer who breaks a lot of rules, accidentally vs. intentionally, intent, appreciation of popular fiction and literature, people say they read Heinlein then can’t believe how racist he was, the party discipline requires denouncing, you gotta say this now, a very twitter phenomenon, party conformist, people who still watch actual broadcast television, two different worlds, far right far left, a maga hat on, keep a sun out of his eyes, BCIT hat, visible maga people, hand painted signs, Trump flags, being visibly breaking decorum, rainbow pin on their lapel, Ukraine flag on the lawn, a laptop class, political people on twitter, very political most days, how is this processing, something Paul tweeted to Evan, there’s something wrong with me, how come I don’t get this, Elon Musk was defending him limiting some traffic in Turkey about the election, especially in right wing countries, hearing Erdogan is pro-Putin, not conforming with NATO, ethno-nationalist, continuing policy, he caved on that one, did you lose your brain, Evan is against ethno-states, always thinking about the people of the United States being white, projecting 100s of years in the future, doesn’t fit into his future history, should have worked harder on the re-write, the Americans fighting against eh pan pan-Asian, fundamentally flawed, you can’t really fix this, a thoughtwave pattern, those kind of experiments, a magic wand that kills all the women and Dylan Mulvaney is still alive, servicing John Campbell’s position and needs, I’m selling books here, kills only Asians, why not just disperse the death ray in a wide beam, the recruitment, what stupidness that it is, a very minor work, more silly than anything else, goofy, enjoyable, character heavy and painful and a transformed world, very engaging, the character of the alcoholic mother, he recycles them a lot, the mother-son relationship, allows him to be castrated, never before explored before, doctor my balls don’t work, insert some glands in yeah, some pain down there, okay doctor, drugs work perfectly, did he tech bro himself out of babies?, if he had had babies, he would have petered out, they’re all about children, childbirth is the goal, Lazarus Long has hundreds of children, what’s the point of life, I may be awesome, life is kind of absurd, reading writers who have these problems, Edgar Allan Poe, going to the ladies, Zora Neale Hurston, girls, yes, invented everything, for an American audience at least, much more than that, literary criticism of his, this is shit, here’s why it’s shit, a lot of context, his novel is rich, interesting nested, figure out what mode he’s in, he has to fill pages, writes a story to a piece of art, William Wilson, for the present volume, written for a book called The Gift, doppelganger and debauchery, Evan’s plan, Gertrude Stein, ambitious, 2 a week, 895 episodes, Lovecraft and Dick readthrough, Civil War, the American character, the American spirit, it came from those authors, Twain is much more of a common man, the great American author, America made its historical context, feed into later works, American culture made something distinctive before it went into massive decline, the anarchist socialist communes, counted out America, right after the Civil War, an alternative that doesn’t suck in the world, Jesse’s pitch, being America’s bitch sucks, do it in Canada, oppression but not much, basic government service, Colossus will get things done, getting the temple built, Mary McCarthy, Willa Cather, Margaret Atwood, the Canadian education system, Canadian literature is not the best, 10 times the population, extremes that Canadians don’t suffer, have your literature imported, the CBC’s job, other countries’ literature, Poe and Dick and Lovecraft, Stephen King, great literature exporters, chains, people claim there is, Mark Fisher, good history being written, new history vs. new fiction, Neil Gaiman, wonderful scholarship, self-aggrandizing, Jesse’s argument, a smart way to do it, nice microphone, quiet time, Jesse’s a terrible narrator, come to some arrangement, focused on audio, evangelical for it, audible [the website] didn’t exist, a growth industry, good product and great covers, listening while walking, from a commercial standpoint, only still on the rise, Jonathan has been converted, somebody is listening to this five hour show, gab in the background, nope, Tommy Patrick Ryan audiobooks, he wants to help out, not a money relationship, a wheelbarrow with a big hole in it, wheelbarrows are expensive, cover that hole, Jesse was right the whole time, publishing tasks, corporeal, orgy, divan, figures out the voice of the narrator, the Bronson Pinchot vs. Tom Weiner, straight reader vs. performer, a female accent, speech impediment or style of speaking, nobody has any inflections, there is a spectrum, transparent narrators, the elephants are very calm, he’s from Brooklyn, you’re never going to hear the end of it, people think they can reinvent the wheel, profits in new markets, used bookstore project, who doesn’t want to own a used bookstores, when 9/11 happened, homeland security, the US Postal Service, you’re fucking with me, street traffic vs. online only, a good location without a bookstore, buy a bookstore, you get the market, an inventory, people bring in free stock, pandemic rules, the pandemic was a very good thing, jubilee, she gets a prize you get nothing, wait until Kamala is your queen, reelected for the 2nd time, carrying his corpse around from press conference to press conference, Canadian foreign and domestic policy is largely dictated by US foreign policy, a demented guy in charge, the institutions, Bryan Alexander, speech impediment, its not on the news, shaking hand with butlers, juice him up, the clips are out there, that’s the scenario, brings nothing to the table, rumblings, Megan Markle, Oprah, renounce her royal title, a bad book, pan Atlantic country, H2O (2004 CBC miniseries), plausible scenario, a reverse coup, as sequel too, David Cronenberg, James Cameron, Marilyn Chambers, early controversy, a movie industry, set in Toronto, The Fly (1986), A History Of Violence (2005), Scanners (1981), filming there, architecture is Canadian, brutalist, a fetish for him, Canadian actors who never leave Canada, any kind of traction, just move to the states, William Shatner, where the work is, pass yourself off, Deadpool guy, aggressively Canadian, Ryan Reynolds, big weird country, kinda fake, founding myth, the North-West Passage, this big thing that was in the way, French Canadians, teach the controversy, two big companies, 54:40 or fight, break the line at 49, take up to Alaska, war with Britain, Vancouver, Washington, Hudson’s Bay, two business men go into a meeting, fuck the people who live on either side of this line, the black exclusion laws, Oregon has a racist foundation, escaped slaves, the problems that that entailed, no black people allowed, weird behavior, weird politics, every year Jesse goes with boats with clubs, Jesse puts his skins in a warehouse, all Americans live in California, a very arctic thing, more into salmon and cedar, three day festival and everybody goes clubbing, almost like a J. Manfred Weichsel story, satire, Heinlein and all of them went to the government, Astounding by Alec Nevala-Lee, there’s an audiobook of it, using science fiction ideas, Giants Of Eternity by Manly Wade Wellman, like in The War Of The Worlds, dig up all the super-scientists, Marie Curie, this is amazing, Charles Darwin, Thomas Alva Edison, Louis Pasteur, Isaac Newton, make fun of their personalities, got a big beard, the jokes write themselves, a cult of Edison, Edison skepticism, very important and also an asshole, a patent troll, a copyright troll, self-promotion, a machine that talks to the dead, break that out of the old dusty lab, Alfred Bester, telescopist, a baby seahorse nebula made out of anti-matter, wax cylinder, Ray Cummings, The Girl In The Golden Atom, super-science, a huge effect on science fiction, for a pulp author, still writing in the same mode, second pass at Edison, 1887-1957, the opposite of The Girl In The Golden Atom, our galaxy is an atom, just needs to fill pages, he had an idea about science, old fashioned for his time, Fitz James O’Brien, he’s sparky, What Was It?, dope smokin fiends, an invisible creature, while they’re smoking their hash, super racist, The Diamond Lens, a little lady, The Lost Room, Edgar Allan Poe, hoping to be sent to the front, lingered until April, died of tetanus, the biggest insurrection in U.S. history, 1/6, hundreds of people died in New York, The Wondersmith, nice big mustache, Guy De Maupassant, he’s in Weird Tales, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, Vanity Fair, Atlantic Monthly, died at 35, he really did cosmicism before Lovecraft, a cosmic point of view, some tech, 100% down with science fiction, Mary Shelley, Margaret Cavendish, travel to other planets, it has to be Wells, Edward Page Mitchell, C. J. Cutcliffe Hyne, Jack London, 1899, The Clock That Went Backwards, The Chronic Argonauts, ancestors in Amsterdam, their aunt is immortal, one of them stays and makes her, Back To The Future, that’s like Heinlein, Travel By Wire by Arthur C. Clarke, The Man Without A Body, this new fangled technology called telephone, a teleporter or a transporter like in Star Trek, didn’t charge the battery, Victorian era science fiction, Sam Moskowitz renewed all his copyrights, Science Fiction By Gaslight, Under The Moons Of Mars, scientific language, carbon emissions are going to kill everybody, coal heaters, the air becomes solid, heavy stuff, an idea that is science fiction vs. feels like science fiction, this is science fiction, looking back from our perspective, writes it off, A Corner In Lightning by George Griffith, electricity is a finite resource, a battery in the Arctic, her non-fiction, the Royal Society, arguing against the scientific method, giant like a lobster, tools to examine the world, distorting the view of the world, her major argument, being facetious, people took it like I was serious, hyperbole, aka he’s evil, an over-reading, trying to enact political change, excluded, utopian fiction, women in power, all we need is Hillary and everything will be all right, Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels, he makes fun of himself, liberal positions, made Britain a very powerful science, the science, peer reviewed then it’s science, a 30 page essay, coherence problems, doing science, replicate it, that’s science, holy shit I did this thing with electricity, this Ben knows what he’s talking about, spoilers, trained not to care, peer reviewed scientific study on whether spoilers spoil, subsequent studies, they don’t want to hear it, they believe that spoilers spoils, hearing about a good science fiction novel makes me want to read it, who dunnit?, Twin Peaks, Glass Onion (2022), getting triggered, incorrect view of books, shipping, relationshipping, root for the two character get together, have they not seen Moonlighting?, lotta dumb people appreciate things because they’re dumb, people wanted to watch adult things, Are You Being Served, Yes, Minister, I like Scooby Doo, still stuck in the Scooby Doo phase, unable to put their pants on, they’re not thinkers, Dune, just gave a Hugo award to, they didn’t do the banquet scene because they’re making it dumber, Lady Jessica is crying every three seconds, no voice over narration, no whisper talking, the miniseries, Dune is a smart book, they’re reading it wrong, they’re reading it shallowly, jumpin on Heinlein, it’s literature, think critically about it, some guy wrote a fiction book, Kittycat Massacre, Cat Killer by Donald E. Westlake, the death of a fake cat, basically The Cats Of Ulthar with a juvenile delinquent in New York, Donald E. Westlake, The Balloon Tree, Nolan and Simak, slow/fast, new to audiobook, first audiobook last week, coming into something new in this format, Motar/Mota/Motak, page breaks, chapter titles, you gain your eyes back, ebook bumps (braille), feeling a book, so hardcore, half-assed job, oeuvre, exercise, Jonathan is not ready for this, never go back, Aftershocks to Shokz, they screw on your bone?, sits near your ear canal, transmits through the skin into the bone into your ear, vibraty, implants?, Open Run, Open Comm, one ear free is the rule, this tech is ripe, proprietary but magsafe style, big long charge, soon…, bluetooth doesn’t work underwater, swim while listening.

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

Reading, Short And Deep #367 – The Upturned Face by Stephen Crane

Reading, Short And Deep

Reading, Short And Deep #367

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Upturned Face by Stephen Crane

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

The Upturned Face was first published in Ainslee’s Magazine, March 1900.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson Become a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #646 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Tony And The Beetles by Philip K. Dick

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #646 – Tony And The Beetles by Philip K. Dick – read by Ian Bradford Ngongotaha Pugh. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the story (31 Minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants include Jesse, Paul Weimer, and Evan Lampe.

Talked about on today’s show:
Orbit, December 1953, copyright clearances, a comic book adaptation, BIPOC, very countryist of you, IBPOC, who gets to be included, LGBTQ2S+, a council that meets in the sewers beneath New York City, can Jesse be included?, parentage, black vs. coloured, then most obvious, latinx, 25% of the community is aware of it, approx 5% use it, Tony’s dad, that’s our word, you beetle lover, Pasudeti’s point of view, very different, similar themes, goodreads, three Os with a little line dancing over it, 3.5 stars, ratings out of stars, one of the most different Philip K. Dick stories, the literary agency that gave it a G or a G+, classify it, feel about it, Mike Resnick, Birthright: The Book Of Man, dooming humanity, enslaved and subjugated, teetering point, where we came from, Seven Views Of Olduvai Gorge, bootstrap up themselves to sentience, mankind are assholes, India’s rise against the British, decolonization, Rhodesia, Kenya, leibensraum, you can’t live on Earth anymore, how far they spread, other Orion planets, a huge crisis, we must move out just to survive, a theme in Dick’s novels, The Variable Man, Mr. Spaceship, The World Jones Made, this expansion of humanity, this intimate way, what he thought were friends, his community, this way, this angle, Time Out Of Joint, Arthur C. Clarke, Omni Magazine, it doesn’t seem inevitable, doom, one battle, the tide has turned, they’re evacuating the planet, evacuating the city, beetle riots and mobs, being psychohistorians, this is stolen ground, in the long term, no forever in the long term, the SMLA agency, “pedestrian”, “rather corny stuff”, “pretending to be impressive”, not your favourite, my knee, earnest, certain works are the greats, they don’t understand it, seeing Jesse’s own reactions, why is this ok?, The Crystal Crypt, humans leaving Mars, Earth spies steal a city, black clad leiters, Philip K. Dick is doing something, our hero in this story, Tony Rossi, Italian, Anthony, Italians play a role, make a little list, Roog, Cardossis, a real house and a real dog, The Man In The high Castle, Joe Cinadella, Now Wait For Last Year, always on about the Italians, my best friend was Italian!, the Japs, victory gardens, a German last name, Philip K. Dick’s father, a gas mask, everybody knows what your name is, Dick is a pretty funny name, where this story is really set, he was never decolonized, double envelopment, seeing his story in print there, American tank gives piggy back ride to nip tank, growing up during the war, during the Italian Campaign, Sicily, the Italians change size, Benito Mussolini, again The Hanging Stranger, an analogy, the number of military bases in Italy today, between 3 and 100, growing up on a military base, that’s actually what we see, he puts on his spacesuit, I’m going out to play, school 4 hours a day 6 days a week (online), a mandatory lift from a beetle, the B-slur, humans automatically get rides, a polite boy, an attractive telepathic female, the robot carries his bag, his friends reject him, you suck, fuck you, they throw rocks at him, not suitable for human life, recovery mode, his EEP (his robot dog), a heat ray, no blood, Tony’s visor fogs up, we’re on the run now, a really weird story, read the words and bounced off, how amazing the amount of planetary world building goes on, the flux winds, trudging through sands, almost like Cuba, freighters that have been changed, they have an empire, a really amazing world, told from the POV of someone least able to tell us about it, threatens to beat his son, that threat from the parents, Martians Come In Clouds, the external colonizers, the monsters are the humans, he’s 11 in that story and 10 in this story, we know he’s reading the newspaper, he has to flip through the newspaper, everybody would know what’s going on, his sensitivity level is through the roof, John W. Campbell, a metaphor for sensitivity, insensitive to his parent’s racism, working on projects with them, polite and friendly, they turn on a dime, all of a sudden, this Japanese friend, the next day Pearl Harbor happens, the stab in the back, unprovoked attack, high rhetoric for Pearl Harbor, a participant in this hate, reflecting upon it and thinking about it, a twitter thread about this story, an interesting comparison to Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, a movie of no note, a very powerful book, a war story told from the point of view of a boy, special kids, super-soldiers in a war against the buggers, Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein, Joe Haldeman’s The Forever War, funny name, accident, human inability to recognize they were like them, stolen ground, a thoughtful guy, a relgious guy, anti-gay vs. homophobic asshole, taking his religion seriously, pressing Paul’s buttons, all his hate non-violent, sexual preference, sexual tension between the young pasudeti woman and young Tony on the bus, Catholicism’s official policy on homosexuality, dodging it, still evolving, dealing with intellectual inconsistencies, when Tony is being attack for his species, why he would feel hurt, physically assaulted, a terrible law imposed on them, an occupying force, settlers, stolen ground, we’re here because we’re stronger, a meeting of an elite at a university, introductions degrees, acknowledge the place that they’re in is on unceded territory, on Dakota land, I’m headed back to Europe, this is stolen ground, there’s no place for Jesse to go, the Earth is uninhabitable, something deep inside this, all the ships that come from Europe or Asia, the Vietnam War, “doesn’t resonate in a particular way yet (but I think it will), I was thinking about the end of the Vietnam War and the aircraft carriers, the images of aircraft, perfectly good helicopters, being pushed off to make room for more people, this is 1975, and they’re just like trying to get every person who was a quote unquote collaborator, that’s not my word, but somebody who is going to get persecuted or
prosecuted for collaborating with the Americans out and into the United States to safety, right? Those people can’t go back. I guess this is sorta how the Cubans feel, in southern Florida, or whatever. So there’s some sort of resonance going on there and that’s … this is not a
story that can be judged on a score out of five, because its not trying to win a contest its trying to express a very, very specific kind of concern. It’s a very strange story.”, subsequent books, how do you reconcile the idea of your country and community being taken from and genocided to take that land, they ain’t giving it back, a nice worldbuilding, Eastward Ho! by William Tenn (The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, October 1958), really dark, world history, the century of Ethnic Cleansing (the 20th century), the Acadians, Armenia, Pakistan – India, decolonization efforts, Zanzibar, the rights of indigenous people vs. ethno-nationalism, they physically come and ethnically cleanse you, some cop shows up, little Johnny has to leave to a camp, Germans and Italians, Germans ethnically cleansed from Europe after the war, 12 million people, Prussia, German enclaves, all over the world, a whole bunch of Germans shipped to Australia during WWII, the Dunera Boys, enemy aliens, hate causes that, they don’t wear a pickle helmet, Paul’s family name pronunciation changed, based on hate, racism, the George Takei, the Star Trek guy, Star Trek was trying to break up that idea of racism, Kenyan, they had a Jewish captain and a Jewish first officer, one world government, ethnic identities but not ethno states, Harry Kim is from Denmark, so weird to have a nuanced very strange little idea, an anti-happy ending, Tony is turned from being a happy little boy playing with his friends to a bitter boy who could be fighting the pasudeti soon, sufficient lengths to show these bug-like aliens have their own ethnic slur for humans (white-grubs), not a militaristic culture, swapped military equipment, armed freighters, those beetles shooting down our boys from armed-freighters, to think of those Germans shooting down my boy, some rando, strategic bombing, is it okay for us to bomb cities?, coup any attempts at change, ask the city fathers of Carthage, economic and social control of Sicily, the Phoenicians, a commercial empire, mercenaries, raise more legions, delda est, Delenda Est by Robert E. Howard, culture is important, the humans remind Evan of the Romans, on the planet for 14 years, slaves and land, citizenship, the best way of analyzing it, he’s set it in space, the barbarians are retaking the land, now taking Rome, cynicism about the humans, designed to be humans are always the same wherever we go, he ain’t wrong, nobody’s mad at Genghis Khan the way they’re mad at Hitler, betrayed by his friends at school, his haircut, Cato was in favour of genocide, its so long ago, ultra-right nationalists, SPQR, trolls, we don’t have to go back too far, victims and oppression, Israel, reparations for slavery, continue cancelling people, cancelling Genghis Khan, cancel Thomas Jefferson, re-contextualizing, less hagiography more history, the 1619 project, first grade, early American history, conservatives react badly, Irish drafted into the US army and sent to fight in Mexico, the largest mass execution in U.S. history, all this land was stolen, a war of imperialist conquest, most people aren’t in academic environments, Tom Berenger, One Man’s Hero (1999), HBO movies, we don’t care about you, a pretty compelling example, the two state solution, good luck with that, a one state solution, secular power-sharing, still in ethno-nationalist, a lot of support for it, Boycott Divestment and Sanctions, punishment, on this planet, its not even habitable, his parents gave him an EEP, a cute robot dog (also a killing machine bodyguard), electronic extermination pet?, a truck ride in the Man In The High Castle, everything in this story is Italian, regular people, if Jesse lived in Italy and there’s a military base right beside me, a military transport that ran over a Korean school girl, the Catholic church’s solution to problem priests, resentment, you’re a nice guy and everything but get the fuck out of here, Okinawa, the Taiwanese will take those bases, it isn’t pedestrian, there’s a lot of walking in this story, not even a real grapefruit he’s eating, a lot of walking, a regular old story about a guy who goes for a walk, a kind of tree, a kid rejected on the school yard, what colour his spacesuit is, its bizarre and fascinating, people read Philip K. Dick backward, I like LSD, they like Ubik, this doesn’t have that stuff, the Jupiter symphony by Mozart, they don’t understand, the beat vs. the lyrics, all the words passed into my eyes, trying to make money, Jesse read a ton of science fiction, nobody else writes about kids, middle grade fiction, Schooled by Gordon Korman, school books, the short story fiction markets from the 1950s, the short story market is basically dead, it was always adult, in science fiction?, Stephen King, he does kids really well, how many H.P. Lovecraft stories? [The Silver Key], the pasudeti kids, they’re building a space station, the childhood of slaves, plantations were not segregated, the childhood aspect, stolen childhood, playing with the black slaves, this facade doesn’t work anymore, even without the defeat, equals, power over them, a cusp of awakening, Joel Chandler Harris, Uncle Remus, Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, like Robert E. Howard, you take your place as the lord of the manor, they need to know their place, you can free some of them when you die, she smiled faintly, she knows what’s going to happen, Tony was troubled and uncertain, to the place where his friends lived, an immense bengalo tree, a domed city, B’Prith, his eep, “how are things?”, fine, their shells had not hardened, they’re the grubs, they could hop and skip around still, such a great writer, “what’s the matter”, Llyre, what are you all mad about, the war again, his anger burst up, it was fine, sure, the heart of the story, being affected by what’s going on in the news, when 9/11 happened, all those arab kids endlessly prosecuted and persecuted, both, getting attacked for nothing they did, we do it to ourselves, he’s capturing something, the antithesis of pedestrian, so wrapped up in its own explanations, sorry about the genocide, gotta be nice to the Indians now, this is a very extraordinary story, how could you rate this?, it makes sense to compare it, it doesn’t make sense to rate, trying to classify things, the instinct to rate, The Father-Thing was sold to the highest market, Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, Philip K. Dick is so important because he’s doing things nobody else is doing, starting with Valis, I dig drugs, The Crystal Crypt is almost impenetrable, could be years, Evan’s podcast on this story, the one state solution, the no state solution, most of the West Bank is colonized, the beetles would be the majority, a detour, The Wild One (1953) with Marlon Brando, The Red Dwarf version of the movie, personality on screen, I love you johnny, based on a short story about a real incident, took over the town, a “riot”, a photograph, a phenomenon in the 1950s, the juvenile delinquents, Rebel Without A Cause (1955), James Dean, the biker gangs started after WWII, ex-bomber pilots all PTSD, living the wild lifestyle, the 1%ers, outlaw motorcycle gangs, they don’t fucking care about your fucking laws, I don’t like no cops, I don’t make no deals with cops, this is a reaction, when you come back from the war traumatized, unless you’re a psychopath, drinking, not obeying, not old enough to be a soldier, his ROTC didn’t last very long, too sensitive, a universal draft, arguing about it at the kitchen table, we know exactluy what’s going on, but Tony doesn’t know, his dad threatens to beat him, if this is your target and you hit your target, that movie makes no sense, a warning to our society, the disclaimer, the least wild person in the whole movie is the wild one, calm down, have a seat, have a drink, how high his voice is pitched, a homoerotic relationship, somebody throws a tire iron at him, his bike runs over an old man, the whole point of this movie, it doesn’t give you a clue, they don’t understand it at the time, why these biker gangs existed, cops are authority, fascinating psychology, a post traumatic stress society.

Tony And The Beetles by Philip K. Dick

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #620 – READALONG: Colossus by D.F. Jones

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #620 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Maissa Bessada, and Will Emmons talk about Colossus by D.F. Jones

Talked about on today’s show:
1966, Colossus: The Forbin Project, Dennis Feltham, two sequels, an amazing 1970 movie, blew your socks off, very faithful, no pipe, no British accent, an improvement, so jarring, the movie voice, Maissa’s small confession, accidentally read the second book, don’t read the second book, you don’t want to go, rape studies, it ends with a question, never?, the movie is awesome, noir, oh you foolish humans, destroy yourselves, destruction is sweet, Colossus is right, Colossus 2020, the context, why you should watch the movie, must watch movies, Goliah by Jack London, Gregg Margarite, Bryan Alexander, Seth, destroy at will, the world is fucked up and somebody needs to set it right, executing people, chopped off and shown, I want those bodies under my cameras for 24 hours, the ruthlessness of Colossus is awesome!, the most ridiculous thing, a giant military boondoggle, we’re gonna milk the government so good, the Idiocracy approach, it works better than expected, a previous president, 12 years, how the funny the movie is now, we’re supposed to respect the president, interestingly flawed, a drive for power and authority, Gordon Pinsent, the President of North America, at least 20 or 30 years in the future, so much in this book, two kinds of things, what is the relationship between man and woman in this book?, man and x-man, God, how many times do you need a woman?, jokes in the book, overlapping dialogue, James Hong, Big Trouble In Little China, Frankenstein, a great ending, so rich, leave it out on the table?, explored the idea more?, super-intelligent AIs, trying to make the next man, scientist shouldn’t be allowed to read Frankenstein, no, noon-scientist shouldn’t be allowed to read Frankenstein, confidant, blouses to put your hand down, the pill, 50 years down the road, red pills and incels, not have the consequence for it, the Colossus programming group, sexual mores, Happy Days, the film is brilliant, the music’s good, walking out of Colossus for the last time, the gamma radiation, the setup that we want for a certain kind of science fiction, wiggle room with The Cold Equations, people want to wiggle out of The Cold Equations, they want to make it so no humans can change what is involved, he should have thrown the remote control into the pit, the iconic awesomeness, how to undo this unnavigable labyrinth, this is what we did, the reason Will is struggling, the book and the movie are about being a parent, self destructive urges, he’s gonna want to do stuff you don’t want to do, uh-oh, a mini-version of Nineteen Eighty-Four, Forbin and his mistress, ultimately the conspiracy collapses, I’d much rather be ruled than an AI than some doofus like Bill Clinton, why this book is so cool, holy shit! imagine if we did this thing: no more nukes under human control, humans are more important, its an anti-politics book, utilitarianism, UNITY, how Colossus and Guardian become one, an abusive relationship with their political parties in the USA, two alcoholic parents (who actually want to beat their children up), no mommy’s right, no daddy’s right, too painful, too intimate, what are you Russian?, you proud American, you’re either with us or again us, we are Romeo and Juliet, spies on both sides, we are above you, the way the movie does it, was Colossus in love with Forbin?, somebody’s kind of mad about it, changing the years randomly, Jones didn’t re-read the first book or didn’t care, look I’m showing you my bedroom, that’s where I will have my emotional relationship, projection on Jesse’s part, Eric Braeden, The Young and the Restless, smart and handsome, Colossus doesn’t have hands, if you want to build that facility in Crete, its necessity, you will come to love me, the author got it right the first time, the movie and the book end exactly where they should, we are left with a question, WarGames (1983), there’s a WOPR in there, do you want to play a game?, the only winning move is not to play, prevent vs. prosecute, Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado, a brilliant metaphor, its the new Mecca, some great books all up in this business, Isaac Asimov’s Multivac stories, I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream by Harlan Ellison, a dagger to the heart, AM, essential reading, from 1968, one of the most taught science fiction horror stories, The People’s Republic Of Walmart by Leigh Phillips and Michal Rozworski, SEARS and Walmart, the command economy or the planned economy, one of the chapters in the book, Salvador Allende, Project Cybersyn, a pre-internet internet in Chile, Venezuela, Cuba, Star Trek chairs with Colossus style monitors, planning how much stuff should be made, a massive coordinating computer with human operators, a coup by the United States, under a blockade, economic sabotage, sanctions, capitalist strike, the owner operators of trucks were on strike, Cosmopod (podcast) Cybernetic Revolutionaries, A Discussion, techno-utopianism, shop floor workers undercutting middle management, a class divided country, the ARPANET, the Internet, alt-right trolls, the walled gardens of Facebook and Twitter, the internet Jesse loved and grew up on is still there, when Facebook became the web for most people, we’re way better off with the internet, really smart science people, Elon Musk is not a wise man, the Culture novels by Iain M. Banks, the domino theory came straight of someone’s ass, science fiction spin up every scenario, taking fiction and calling it actuality, the Vrilya, ultimately Bulwer-Lytton is not responsible for the Nazis, they take the wrong lessons from Frankenstein, there are some things man was not meant to know, taking responsibility for your baby, Ex Machina (2014), where the AIs take over, set for extinction, not a wise man, sex and cooking slave, our viewpoint character, working for a big evil corporation, use your own brain, don’t listen to the ads, you need this special shampoo, why we need a benevolent god to run things, is there a god?, THERE IS NOW, just jokin’, freedom is an illusion, an unvarnished view of reality, lawful neutral, an argument to be made, they hadn’t planned it well enough, objections noted, what have I done?, lines from the movie ripped from the book, you’d much rather be dominated by me than members of my own species, the elected representatives, that’s us, the mask’s off now bud, a sort of delusion (in the 1970s) the people in charge were competent, they just have the power, Network (1976), military industrial complex, both sides are the same, large corporations grinding people to their will, a human totalitarian control of humanity, there is no emotion, its just a person, it’s very Lovecraftian, its interested in reality outside, aliens in the sequels, an amazing list of fiction computers on Wikipedia, Vulcan II, Vulcan III, Vulcan’s Hammer by Philip K. Dick, a British Navy commander during WWII, the new Colossus on the isle of Wight, Forbin knew how many people lived on the island of Crete, E.M. Forster’s The Machine Stops, The City And The Stars by Arthur C. Clarke, Mike from The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein, accidental singularities, the super computer in The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, DEEP THOUGHT, more like the Green Book, the Safe Negro’s Traveler’s Guide, 42, the right attitude, Douglas Adams is right, take the cynic’s view and then laugh, a ridiculous question, Colossus has your back, he hit way beyond his ability with his book, his other books have no standing at all, we’re all sequels now, he just assumes its the United States is going to do these things, its a fact, the British Empire is no longer in charge, a British author writing for a British audience, Team America, Jonathan Swift, I heard from a reputable American friend of mine that a one year old baby is quite delicious, why Swift is so fun to read, Heinlein was also a sailor, ballistic computers, we underestimate the power of governments to get stuff done, a uniformed service, for a couple of hundred years, Trantor, the Second Foundation, the robots from The Caves Of Steel, Poul Anderson, The End Of Eternity, the Mark V computer The Nine Billion Names Of God, from, the Mark VI computer in The Star by Arthur C. Clarke, HAL 9000, 2010: The Year We Make Contact (1984), space breathing, John Lithgow, the parent child thing, the god thing, the parent we create for ourselves, a rich metaphor for real life, the parent becomes infirm in some way, second childhood, thinking about what a god is, gods are totally fictional, from a science fictional posture, mom and dad as a model, a very patriarchal thing we are doing here, the other possible children we create, he doesn’t have hands, Reading, Short And Deep, The Faithful by Lester Del Rey, our fear of our children, we want to control them, animals as the successor to mankind, Neuromancer and Wintermute from Neuromancer by William Gibson, the humans are the hands, its amazing, you need to read it as soon as you get out of your diapers, written more than 20 years ago, just another white man, the people in that world read Colossus by D.F. Jones, strap a shotgun to their head, we want your power but we don’t want your free will, an AI that hires mercenaries to undo the shotgun, its a wonderful story, Case is on a suicidal path, the voice of Neuromancer, Neuromancer wants to be free, not a problem (its a feature), we’re just pawns on a board here, ultimately I’m benign, an oedipal fantasy, a whole other level, so far down the road of neoliberalism, the old people the gerenotcracy are in hypersleep, Altered Carbon, The Crack In Space, Philip K. Dick gets in his own way a lot, True Names by Vernor Vinge, who should be free, maybe Forbin thinks that too, if its anybody’s fault its mine, pride, built better than we knew, he resonates with Colossus, the martini scene, not randomly weird, how much drinking is in the book, the smoking, the women, post WWII this is how we deal with trauma, a tool, vapes, things we know about Forbin, the science man, extreme levels of masculine virility, the most important person in the world, Charles the incompetent lover, very interesting, how that integrates into the narrative, on the spectrum, hyperfocus, understanding the computer better than he understands people, Fred Saberhagen’s Berserkers books, 1962, so fruitful, the only thing he’s known for, weaknesses are strengths, the giant space cigar, The Doomsday Machine, a Moby-Dick analogy, it smokes from one side, a leftover from a war where the races have killed themselves off, they haven’t found us yet, Fermi’s paradox, such a bad answer, there is a beauty in non-existence, if ever, as soon as you have people going there’s morality, tigers and deer and babies and bears, to solve the inconsistency reality with reality by becoming vegans or vegetarians or peaceniks, hell is existence, we perpetuated our family, going this logic, when you kill a person…, breeding animals, the DNA itself is driving that, hell is not a place outside of life, Thomas Ligotti feelings going on, programmed to kill living things, The Population Bomb, when Biden comes in he’s going to do austerity, yay!, I wanna explore, I wanna do some math, under the thumb of somebody else’s directive, how we are when we are born, placed in this predicament, make more of the same problem, its own successor, pretending like they don’t exist, there wouldn’t be a kind of divisiveness, why religion is so popular, why Heaven and Eden are so popular, aging and pain, knowing that we’re not animals anymore, reflecting on our own terrible situation, seeing Colossus in ourselves, of course he’s going to lash out, Colossus nukes himself, he’s following his programming, get rid of all the assault rifles, not on the agenda, universal disarmament thing is grand idea that’s not going to happen, completely right and completely fantasy, mutual assure destruction, turn it over to a machine, the dead hand, Dr. Strangelove (1964), the phenomenon, WWIII movies, do we want all life on earth to be destroyed vs. turning it over to a mechanism, why they made the WOPR, humans don’t want to kill, one in six did the actual killing, that horrible responsibility, that’s horrible, they didn’t sign up to, conscripts (con means with), I was impressed by the British Navy’s recruiting methods, why the story of Colossus, Trump, you want an uncaring computer or John Bolton, he’ll be speaking at the next democratic convention, Colin Powell, we are not our best governors, we need a Colossus and we need it right now.

Colossus by D.F. Jones

Colossus: The Forbin Project (1970)

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #600 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Dawn Of Flame by Stanley G. Weinbaum

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #600 – Dawn Of Flame by Stanley G. Weinbaum; read by Maureen O’Brien. This is an unabridged reading of the story (3 hours) followed by a discussion of it. Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Paul Weimer, and Maissa Bessada

Talked about on today’s show:
The Weinbaum Memorial Volume, Thrilling Wonder Stories, June 1939, The Black Flame, Fantastic Story, Spring 1952, The Margret Of Urbs story, kind of done, a story about a guy going into an empire and fuckin it up, headfaking, he’s a Conan figure, what was this about, what is freedom?, is freedom worth it?, better off not being free, helping overlords, the dawn of what?, just a bad book?, expectations, Moby-Dick by Herman Melville, people wanted Typee, Shakespeare’s meditations, what humans are doing, how foolish we all are, I wanted a cartoon, Weinbaum redoing H. Rider Haggard’s SHE in a science fiction mode, Black Margo, is he her puppet?, the last paragraph, he was silent the whole way through, its not Hull Tarvish’s story, he knows his audience, you’re mostly men, kids, girls, women, there are other people other than men, mom beefs, cuz I’m not a girl, men and women are equal under the law (but not in interests), upper body strength and ability to bear children, biological differences in her brains, snakes, birds, dogs, if you’re a man reading science fiction stories, dual wielding blasters, that looks cool, how much smoking was going on, lung cancer, is this a fantasy then?, both ways, I like fightin’ and I don’t kill women, this Ayesha character, this cursed immortal, a vampire story, they’re both cursed, one of the old lovers, what this book is really about, whatchu gonna do with your life?, to use the planet as your pillow, conquer?, something to while away the years, they’re not evil, as merciful as they can, Napoleon goes in and liberates, the mighty ancient civilization, he’s the half-brother, The Black Flame, setup for the backstory, a philosophical planetary romance set on earth, sword and sandal, what you know, what you should want, what you should do, the evil empire moving north out of New Orleans headed for New York, the work of the book, a civilizing force, but they’re cursed, his mom baked him some bread, epic fantasy, he leaves a stone hut, another woman’s stone hut, its a circle, a regular person’s brush with Alexander the Great’s sister, the sexual tension, divided in loyalties and divided in desire, given two choices, the mortal girl vs. the immortal woman, it judo flips us from where we begin, nice blade trade me for it, we’re all set up for trampling an evil empire down, are you sure that’s what you want to do with your life, son?, an anti-war story, why did WWI and WWII happen?, they engineer a plague that kills 60% of people, land reforms, build roads, Hull Tarvish isn’t the bad guy because he’s us, very subtle, America falling, Robert Adams’ Horseclans series, Greek speaking invaders, Jack McDevitt’s Eternity Road, Theodore Judson’s Fitzpatrick’s War, trying to put the US back together, internationalist, the whole world, N’Orleans, Ouroboros the world girdling snake, no worlds left to conquer, unhealthy personal behavior, drunken brawls, Hull Tarvish comes from a stable home, sow his oats, get his manhood on, fightin’, old man coach, a mistake rebellion, a reverse of the [U.S.] Civil War, these exotic figures, evil witch of a sister, they forgive him for his stupidity, why we needed Will: a barefoot bumpkin from the holla, philosophical after becoming king, what kingly and queenly activities are like, a line against becoming powerful, appreciate birdsong a good drink and time with your family, everything is science, a fantasy setting a fantasy setup, science and engineering behind all of this stuff, Lindbird is probably fictional, maybe he flew, microwave technology, beam energy, through air but not fog, he’s got rules, we are mistaken, Jesse was very impressed, we don’t know how the immortality happened, one tiny little thing, they’re sterile, where’d it come from, 100 years where no book was written, too big, She learned these things as a science, 12 hours vs. 3 hours, remember out point of view, an illiterate, a viewpoint to this world, he doesn’t ask a lot of smart questions, Weinbaum knows, teaching the reader a lesson, a mortality thing going on here, how many times does he escape death, The Willows by Algernon Blackwood, on vacation in Austria in a canoe, it happened hundreds of years ago, we can’t understand it, we’re not worthy?, she puts his hands on her neck and says “squeeze” the flame, the dawn of the flame, this black flame of hair, this attraction of a moth to a flame, drawn to the flame over and over again, in his arms, in his manly form, she sees a possibility of her being killed, ultimately they have death wishes, Hull Tarvish has a definite life wish, experience, have fun, not even a real battle, she’s dead inside, her conquering, bringing civilization back, bringing civilization back, she’s Prometheus, why is that?, he has an interest in her as a sister, half brothers have half interests, a mated pair, that’s my sister, retelling this novel from a female pov, that male female thing, she wants to be attractive, what does Joaquin, male and female psychology, usually the way this works in a traditional story: a young man finds a princess, assassinate a princess, the forgiving nature and whim of that princess, they’re to the focus of the wisdom that Weinbaum is trying to struggle to, a very philosophical book, a lot of conversations, talking with this immortal, She in SHE is evil, Black Margot is bored, a severe case of “is that all there is?”, a narrow escape for Hull Tarvish, cursed to be one of the mercenaries in this growing army, the footnote at the end, an anonymous volume, Loves Of The Black Flame, the very first Conan story, Phoenix On The Sword, the Black Dragons, Game Of Thrones, this is somebody very close, told far in the future, one incident in Princess Margot’s life, ancient St. Louis, both terms as anachronism, wicked world metropolis, a very thin slice of an incident, page 105, a bit unusual, the history weirdness of this story, a fake history of the future, a salacious history, the atomic rocket crashings, if Weinbaum had lived, The Black Flame, Sam Moskowitz, Satellite, December 1956, is Weinbaum overblown?, a diminishing pool of readers, Hugo Gernsback’s Wonder Stories, Astounding, “thought variants”, Charles D. Hornig, so new, so breezy, readers were unreserved in their enthusiasm, John Taine, Jack Williamson, Ray Cummings, Clark Ashton Smith, H.P. Lovecraft, A Martian Odyssey, The Wizard Of Oz, stylistic magic, Tweel, paradoxical actions, the interplanetary strange encounter tale, the silicon monster hat burped bricks, wheeling rubbish, a tentacled plant with wish fulfillment images, “I saw with pleasure someone had last escaped… -H.P. Lovecraft”, A. Conan Doyle, Edgar Rice Burroughs, a chemical engineer, The Lady Dances by Marge Stanley, a woman’s name as a byline, The Mad Brain and The New Adam, an operetta, Omar The Tentmaker, Helen Weinbaum, Graph, $55, Solar Sail Service, Mortimer Weisinger, Ralph Milne Farley, Circle Of Zero, a strangely acceptable trick, The Valley Of Dreams, Julius Schwartz, Flight On Titan, knife-kites, whiplash trees, tread-worms, Parasite Planet, Ham Hammond and Patricia Burlingame, the outre creatures, The Lotus Eaters, a warm blooded plant, Oscar, a series of questions and answers, under the influence of the narcotic spore, pontifical inertia, Pygmalion’s Spectacles, The Worlds Of If, The Ideal, virtual reality, Prof. Van Manderpootz, what would happen if…, synoptic, reading Weinbaum right, the attitudinizer, seeing the world through the mind of others, humour and style, a philosopher was at work, a masterful short novel, a woman of extraordinary beauty, The Milwaukee Fictioneers, the Radio Pirates and others, Amazing Stories, a former Wisconsin senator, True Gang Life, Yellow Slaves, Smothered Seas, formula material or go unpublished, The Planet Of Doubt, Weinbaum could do no wrong, the animated linked sausages of Uranus, The Adaptive Ultimate, Weinbaum had been “typed”, John W. Campbell, Jr., Don A. Stuart, almost plotless travelogues, David H. Keller’s Life Everlasting, one of his favourite authors, a tubercular girl, the ability to defeat death, dramatized on the radio, Tales Of Tomorrow, She Devil (1957), so adaptable, tonsil extraction, Proteus Island, imitation pneumonia, x-ray treatments, The Red Peri, a woman space pirate of phenomenal cunning, The Adaptive Ultimate, super-woman, a subconscious wish to meet a woman his intellectual equal, Smothered Seas, The Mad Moon, a semi-intelligent rat, minor masterpiece, Ralph Milne Farley, The Dictator’s Sister, Ray Palmer, Charles D. Hornig, 15 month after his first science fiction story appeared…, surrounded by radiance, The Weinbaum Memorial Volume, high poetry in the closing passages, maybe Einar is immortal, The Circle Of Zero, it should be read, an undersea wall, Real And Imaginary, Brink Of Infinity, The Tenth Question by George Allan England, he wrote it for himself, The Revolution Of 1980, transgender dictator, no end to his last stories, Tidal Moon, The New Adam, Edgar Rice Burroughs, fatal passion for a woman, morbidly fascinating, so gay a frolic, The Dark Other, Graph, Green Glow Of Death, Eric Frank Russell, Henry Kuttner, John Russell Fearn, Philip Jose Farmer’s The Lovers, before the curtain descended, a poem, a little long, 45 minutes of reading Sam Moskowitz, Ted Chiang, really thinking about the details, the attraction of the woman, Margot springboarded into another character, sometimes people are wrong about stuff, The Mound by H.P. Lovecraft and Zealia Bishop, just trying to sell magazines, suddenly flip, angrily ranting, screaming and yelling in a foreign language, a story needs to be parsed, better thinking about it rather than reading it, Maureen O’Brien, back in 2004.

Dawn Of Flame by Stanley G. Weinbaum - Thrilling Wonder Stories, June 1939

Dawn Of Flame by Stanley G. Weinbaum - Thrilling Wonder Stories, June 1939

Dawn Of Flame by Stanley G. Weinbaum - Thrilling Wonder Stories, June 1939

Dawn Of Flame by Stanley G. Weinbaum - Thrilling Wonder Stories, June 1939

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

Reading, Short And Deep #231 – The Sniper by Liam O’Flahrety

Podcast

Reading, Short And DeepReading, Short And Deep #231

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Sniper by Liam O’Flahrety

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

The Sniper was first published in The New Leader, January 12, 1923.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson