Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Pusher Machine

Professor Epignosis invented the pusher machine. It was a very useful item. It could be used to move heavy objects and remove structures from their current location. He sold one to his neighbor Joe, who wanted it to remove tree stumps. One week later Joe got in an argument with his brother-in-law Bob. Joe became angry and grabbed his pusher machine. He pushed Bob all the way across the street and flat on his back. As more people bought pusher machines they found more uses for them. Some put a pusher machine on wheels and used it for transportation. Others put pusher machines underneath a platform and made a flying machine. It was also found useful for pushing down enemy armies and pushing over their defenses. Pusher machines became miniaturized and were used to power all sorts of useful gadgets. This changed people's lifestyles so drastically they could not imagine living without them. There were also more powerful pusher machines, which had a myriad of heavy industrial uses. These became very useful in warfare for killing large numbers of people. The most powerful machines became so destructive it was thought they could annihilate all humankind.

As pusher machines became basic to society, great effort was put into making them. And those who knew how to make the machines were respected by all and their opinions were highly valued, even in areas that had nothing to do with the machines. Many even held that the universe came into being as a result of naturally occurring pusher effects. But some began to question the supreme value of the machines. They noted how devastating they could be in warfare. They pointed out how the machines made it possible for people to change beautiful wild country into man-made eyesores. Also, large amounts of natural resources were used up to build the machines. Some even began to see the machines themselves as evil. As a result, society divided into two competing groups: those who favored unrestrained use of the machines and those who wanted the making and use of the machines at least curtailed. The one side claimed the others made a living off the machines and were only after profits. The others claimed their opponents were strange anti-pusher fanatics and wanted to go back to lifting things by hand.

The government called together a large conference and invited the most knowledgeable people on both sides. After many hours of discussion, both sides remained adamant on their positions and seemed unable to break the deadlock. At this point a young man named Martin, who was an assistant to one of the delegates, being naive and inexperienced, stood up and began to speak. "Is the problem really the pusher machine?" he asked. "Isn't the problem really us? The machine merely allows  us to do what we want to do more effectively. Maybe we need to consider what we really should be doing." He was hooted down by both sides.

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