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ONE PERCENT SOLUTION . . . (posted one page per day) Page 9 of 252

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A satire of dysfunctional government, social and economic inequality.  

Chapter I: Day/Page 9 CONTINUED FROM YESTERDAY. . . . Furthermore, he stated, reasoning with such numskulls was pointless because, as evident from the chart on page 37 of the detailed brief he had distributed earlier, research on other similar class-1 life-forms indicates that the probability of this species not blowing up itself was abysmally low. Perhaps they could be talked out of it this time, but there was nothing stopping them from doing it again in the future. This time we were lucky, he said, because the graduate student spotted the missiles in time for action to be taken. Maybe next time the missiles will not be spotted. Maybe next time the missiles will land in your backyard, not mine. Maybe this class-1 life-form is innately too irresponsible to wield such powerful technology and needs to have it taken away, as one would a dangerous toy from a child.

The analogy the Minister used was that of a little boy sitting in a bathtub of jet-fuel, gleefully striking matches. Which, he maintained, begged a question: Since obviously one didn’t need to be that intelligent to foresee the outcome of such a foolhardy scenario, if this “so-called” intelligent class-1 life-form was too chuckleheaded to see that, then how intelligent could they be? And if they really were that dumb, he added passionately, then what was the point of trying to reason with such morons? Maybe the class-1 life there, the “pigeons,” he called them, actually deserved to have their “plumes plucked.” Maybe the Academy was doing the other life-forms on that planet a favor by initiating a reset on the pinheaded people.

It was a sound, cogent, and well-received argument, which appealed greatly to both sides. The mostly-empty clutch saw it as yet another clear vindication of the bold, decisive action they’d proposed; and the flock of half-fulls were feeling much better about blotting out an entire race of supposedly-intelligent people, since it was now pretty clear that the irresponsible dimwits were probably not all that bright to begin with, and might actually deserve being blotted out.

After hours of rancorous debate the LSP council ultimately approved opening the temporal-wormhole and resetting the planet. They agreed to a two-pronged plan: First, LAAC scientists would send an expedition to the planet to gather information about the class-1 life there, and other life as well; second, after the scientists finished their work, the military Hawks of Gâia would swoop in to pull the plug, pluck the plumes, wring the wings, or whatever other colorful imagery one preferred, they didn’t really care either, just as long as the “class-1 poseurs” got bounced back into the Stone Age where they rightly belonged, and the launch of the three nuclear missiles was stopped.

On one thing, at least, almost everyone agreed, trying to reason with such imbeciles was pointless. It was like trying to teach a pig to sing, said the Ambassador from Betelgeuse; ultimately you simply end up wasting your time and irritating the hell out of the pig.

Who needs that? Neither you—nor the pig.

All that remained to be settled was the timing for these two actions, but that would be left to those on Gâia to sort out, since they made the discovery and were already intimately involved. Members of the LSP would be updated later, after the other groups formalized their plans.


 Available on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback versions.

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, organizations, places, events, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Copyright © 2013 by Gregory James

All rights reserved


About Gregory James

After 20 years working and living overseas, I returned to the US and was disgusted by how partisan and polarized the country had become. Civility and compromise are now quaint things of the past, replaced by intolerance and the rule of extremes. So I gave up a lucrative career for staring at blank pages and searching for words, in the hope that words might help enact change. Stupid. . . . I know! But after 9 months of labor I birthed forth a book, entitled ONE PERCENT SOLUTION. Reminiscent of Vonnegut, with a dash of Saramago and Fforde, this humorous, satirical, often irreverent romp mocks the absurd we accept to be normal, ridicules the ridiculously low bar we set, and challenges all of us to demand more of ourselves by making light of what is sacred that shackles us.


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