Charlie's Diary

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Thu, 30 Oct 2003

My Evil Plan

I am currently feeling somewhat tired and taking a week off work, lazing around and contemplating my future. Despite being able to make a comfortable living writing science fiction and fantasy novels, I feel that my broad vision and grand strategic skills would be better employed in a more prominent role. There's been a lot of wind-baggery lately about a New World Order, or a Project for a New American Century, but I know how to do it better; their ambitions are all a bit limited. Yes, I intend to apploy for the job of Evil Overlord (Planetary). Here's what I believe I can bring to the post:

Your typical Evil Overlord dresses in black, sits in a high castle overlooking a blasted wasteland, and sends forth armies of Orcs (or the US Marine Corps) to devastate continents. But that's the naive way to do it. My plan is not to tell anyone that I'm the Evil Overlord (Planetary) -- at least, nobody except the folks who count, who can in turn be indexed on your fingers and toes if you have a full complement of digits and understand binary.

I will live in a modest ranch somewhere in the richest military power on the planet -- like Kennebunkport, say -- and I will entertain political leaders from around the world and discuss their Swiss bank account statements and the pending indictments before the Hague international court with them until they see that it is in their interests to listen to my sage advice. By being pivotal in this way, I can control events from behind the curtain (maintained by my good friend Rupe, who won't let any nasty journalists pry into my private life) while putting a useful idiot in the White House to run Province Number One in accordance with my requirements.

A bit of mis-management lower down the pecking order will keep my minions, the presidents and prime ministers and ayatollahs, on their toes, vying for my favour. It'll also serve to produce the semi-permanent state of Emergency that justifies the enormous standing armies of intelligence/secret police agents who maintain the war on terror (also known as the war on people who know what I'm up to and want nothing to do with it).

Mine will be a very democratic evil overlordship -- everyone gets to vote for my choice of minions from a pre-approved list of evil overlord henchpeople, and the minions don't even have to pay lip service to me in public. (In fact, if they *do* pay lip service to me in public they'll have a little accident with a bottle of oxycontin and have to go to the Betty Ford Clinic for a rest).

For those bits of the globe that are annoyingly recalcitrant, my minions will prepare Sock Puppets which they can revile to their hearts' content -- the Elders of Zion, the Illuminati, the Freemasons, the Republican Party. Every so often I'll let a bunch of upstarts 'win' and overthrow their particular Sock Puppet; meanwhile my minions within the upstart movement will work their way to the top by attending executive committee meetings while everyone else is away demonstrating.

It has been said that my friend Rupert Murdoch regularly calls up his guru Arthur C. Clarke to chat about the future, communications satellites, the media, and so on. I'm a bit less overt -- but I will make sure that Noam Chomsky's tenure is unchallenged, and that he has plenty of time to write, and I will read everything he writes in manuscript form and apply his fascinating techniques for social control to my own ends. (Of course he thinks he's doing you all a favour by explaining this stuff ...)

As for why I want supreme power, that takes some consideration. The planetary GDP is roughly US $40Tn a year (that's $40,000Bn). I figure a 1% supertax ought to ensure that all my plans are catered for, allowing me to indulge in grandiouse -- not to say megalomaniacal -- schemes without restraint. For example, I've seen the Louvre and I wasn't impressed. For my personal art collection, nothing less than a titanium pyramid will do -- a titanium pyramid, on the moon. Should only cost a hundred billion or so: that's chicken feed. (A fitting goal for the Indian Space Agency to undertake on my behalf, I think, seeing that NASA are currently pork-barrelled into uselessness and their replacement agency isn't scheduled for creation until five years after the next American revolution.)

As for why you should support me for Evil Overlord, I can offer you a number of fringe benefits. For one thing, it is not in my personal interests to allow the junior management to throw strategic nuclear weapons around, indulge in mass extinction events, ignore earth-smashing asteroids, and otherwise act in the belief that they can get away with mischief. For another thing, I'm not as stupidly provincial as your current lords and masters; in my capacity as Evil Overlord (Planetary) I have to energetically pursue a policy of cosmopolitan internationalism in order to justify the (Planetary) bit. Finally, I promise to be more amusing and congenial, not to mention more witty and imaginative than my predecessors as I feed unfortunate investigative journalists to the candiru fish in the atrium of my glass-walled hideaway skyscraper in the Himalayas. I mean, I used to be a science fiction writer: I'm superbly qualified to dispose of a budget of $400Bn a year in interesting and creative ways that will surprise, entrance, and horrify you.

Vote for me: why settle for the lesser evil?

(PS: Do you think people would take me more seriously as an evil overlord if I changed my surname to "Stroessner"?)

[ Discuss Evil Overlords ]

posted at: 23:22 | path: /overlord | permanent link to this entry


Is SF About to Go Blind? -- Popular Science article by Greg Mone
Unwirer -- an experiment in weblog mediated collaborative fiction
Inside the MIT Media Lab -- what it's like to spend a a day wandering around the Media Lab
"Nothing like this will be built again" -- inside a nuclear reactor complex

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Missile Gap
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The Jennifer Morgue
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The Clan Corporate
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Iron Sunrise
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Singularity Sky
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Some webby stuff I'm reading:

Engadget ]
Gizmodo ]
The Memory Hole ]
Boing!Boing! ]
Futurismic ]
Walter Jon Williams ]
Making Light (TNH) ]
Crooked Timber ]
Junius (Chris Bertram) ]
Baghdad Burning (Riverbend) ]
Bruce Sterling ]
Ian McDonald ]
Amygdala (Gary Farber) ]
Cyborg Democracy ]
Body and Soul (Jeanne d'Arc)  ]
Atrios ]
The Sideshow (Avedon Carol) ]
This Modern World (Tom Tomorrow) ]
Jesus's General ]
Mick Farren ]
Early days of a Better Nation (Ken MacLeod) ]
Respectful of Otters (Rivka) ]
Tangent Online ]
Grouse Today ]
Hacktivismo ]
Terra Nova ]
Whatever (John Scalzi) ]
Justine Larbalestier ]
Yankee Fog ]
The Law west of Ealing Broadway ]
Cough the Lot ]
The Yorkshire Ranter ]
Newshog ]
Kung Fu Monkey ]
S1ngularity ]
Pagan Prattle ]
Gwyneth Jones ]
Calpundit ]
Lenin's Tomb ]
Progressive Gold ]
Kathryn Cramer ]
Halfway down the Danube ]
Fistful of Euros ]
Orcinus ]
Shrillblog ]
Steve Gilliard ]
Frankenstein Journal (Chris Lawson) ]
The Panda's Thumb ]
Martin Wisse ]
Kuro5hin ]
Advogato ]
Talking Points Memo ]
The Register ]
Cryptome ]
Juan Cole: Informed comment ]
Global Guerillas (John Robb) ]
Shadow of the Hegemon (Demosthenes) ]
Simon Bisson's Journal ]
Max Sawicky's weblog ]
Guy Kewney's mobile campaign ]
Hitherby Dragons ]
Counterspin Central ]
MetaFilter ]
NTKnow ]
Encyclopaedia Astronautica ]
Fafblog ]
BBC News (Scotland) ]
Pravda ]
Meerkat open wire service ]
Warren Ellis ]
Brad DeLong ]
Hullabaloo (Digby) ]
Jeff Vail ]
The Whiskey Bar (Billmon) ]
Groupthink Central (Yuval Rubinstein) ]
Unmedia (Aziz Poonawalla) ]
Rebecca's Pocket (Rebecca Blood) ]

Older stuff:

June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
January 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002
(I screwed the pooch in respect of the blosxom entry datestamps on March 28th, 2002, so everything before then shows up as being from the same time)

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