Sunday, July 13, 2008


In Jack London’s unfinished novel "The Assassination Bureau" A social machine is so perfectly devised against “Barbarians” (socially undesirables) as to be unstoppable “except by the destruction of its maker.” The inventor, Dragomiloff, establishes a secret society “that will, for a price, assassinate upon request.” An enterprising young man forwards the name of the inventor to the bureau. Dragomiloff has no choice but to kill himself. "A social machine so perfected in it's fanatical aim that it can only be destroyed by destroying its creators as well ... Even in our time, we have allowed for the construction of such a formidable social machinery .. multinational and anonymous .. that's purpose is to attain for a handful of individuals the greatest possible financial profit regardless of the cost to society, protected by a screen of countless, anonymous share holders. Unconcerned with the consequences, these machines invade every area of human activity and look everywhere for monetary gain, even at the cost of human life, or everyone's life, since in the end, even the richest and most powerful will not survive the depletion of our planet."
-- Alberto Manguel

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