Please enjoy this excerpt from my new work of short fiction. You can grab the full story here.
To Whom It May Concern:
If you are reading this document, it means one of two things. It could mean that you want to know how the world as we knew it ended. Or, perhaps it means I’m no longer able to protect these notes, which will find me either dead, at a re-education camp, or soon to be in one of those grim circumstances.
I want to write this down while I still remember it all clearly. Every single day, some event is erased from our collective memory as a society. It disappears from the internet. It gets scrubbed from history, never to be spoken of again. Sometimes, it’s hard to recall how things were before this.
Back when I was a child, we didn’t have the internet. All of our information came from books. Don’t get me wrong. I loved it when the internet became widely used because I had all the knowledge in the world right there on a device the size of my hand. But perhaps getting rid of the hard copies is where we first began to go wrong. We had physical encyclopedias that documented the events and findings of our time. In many ways, this was so much better because words written on paper remain static. Words on paper stay the same, the incidents documented don’t suddenly rewrite themselves, and the photographs don’t get altered to become more acceptable to some group in the future.
But that isn’t how things worked out. The internet, while it was also the key to a vast world of knowledge and gave us the ability to connect with people around the world, is something that is fluid. We used to warn our kids to be careful what they posted because the internet was forever. Then one day, that was no longer true. At least not for those in charge. It became a vehicle for rewiring history that even Orwell, at his most dystopically creative, could never have imagined.
So, I’m putting this all down the old-fashioned way, using pen and paper. One day, maybe this will help someone to understand what happened to us.
Here’s everything I remember.
The Apocalypse started not with a show-stopping bang but with a quiet, sibilant whisper. It came not on a pale horse, but over the internet, on the day that everything, everywhere, fell under the purview of “the government’s business” and was enforced by The Algorithms. We all became subject to a series of formulas and calculations that monitored us, analyzed us, made predictions about us, ruled us, and punished us when we strayed. This was how we became Good Citizens.
At first, it didn’t feel like an Apocalypse. It felt like a rescue.
But then, like an abusive boyfriend who love-bombed you to the point you had nothing and nobody but him, suddenly that help was cloying, controlling…and dangerous.
If you didn’t toe the line and follow the rules, you’d pay in some way that would make you obey faster next time. The price for existing in moderate comfort was complete submission. The price for rebellion of any kind was far too high, the punishments too severe.
Of course, there were the advocates, the disciples of the “better world” created by The Algorithms that doled out CBDCs and ESG scores and compliance enforcement. The ones who couldn’t think critically for themselves. The people who wanted to force everyone else to follow the arbitrary set of rules that they believed to be right. Those who believed humans were parasites upon the earth and thus deserved to be treated as such.
And then there were the ones who didn’t have to follow the rules. The members of a class who reigned, as from Olympus, to whom the rules and limitations did not apply. The ones who ate steak while everyone else pretended that crickets were steak. The ones who controlled The Algorithms instead of being controlled by them.
It didn’t matter whether your political beliefs leaned right or left. All of our differences ceased to matter when we became victims of the technocracy. Some people were quickly Stockholmed Syndromed and became acolytes. They were the ones who would snitch on their neighbors and even their families for the good of society. They were the ultimate Good Citizens.
The Algorithms became the abusive boyfriend of an entire society.
If you cross them, you’ll find out.
I guess I shouldn’t say this is how it started. Instead, this is how it ended.
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Beta readers called it “unsettling” and said it left them “chilled.” Praised for its realism, this story shows us one way that the nation we love could fall. It’s a quick, 44-page read that will leave you staggered by the possibilities when technology is used as a tool for subjugation.
Go here to grab your digital copy. This weekend, you can name your price.
Let me know what you think in the comments. Is this world possible? Is this where we’re headed? (No spoilers, please!)
Daisy Luther is a coffee-swigging, adventure-seeking, globe-trotting blogger. She is the founder and publisher of three websites. 1) The Organic Prepper, which is about current events, preparedness, self-reliance, and the pursuit of liberty; 2) The Frugalite, a website with thrifty tips and solutions to help people get a handle on their personal finances without feeling deprived; and 3) PreppersDailyNews.com, an aggregate site where you can find links to all the most important news for those who wish to be prepared. Her work is widely republished across alternative media and she has appeared in many interviews.
Daisy is the best-selling author of 5 traditionally published books, 12 self-published books, and runs a small digital publishing company with PDF guides, printables, and courses at SelfRelianceand Survival.com You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Gab, MeWe, Parler, Instagram, and Twitter.