Retail vs. Wholesale (Murder) in "Flat Black"


#1

Brett’s earlier remarks about ritual infanticide have got me thinking. Imperials really hate wholesale murder, and have tools to deal with it, but retail murder is explicitly outside of their scope. The natural impulse of any blackguard who wants to engage in the former is to disguise it as the latter. Thus I expect the Empire has a persistent problem with stochastic terrorism. Worse, I suspect that due to intense colonial resentment of the Empire, some colonial folk do it out of spite.

“Oooooh, the high and mighty Space Minkies din’t like it when the High Priest purified the Lefties, huh? Well, they can’t do anything about it if regular folk like ourselves keep out congregation pure without anyone telling us to.”

Probably drives the Imperials mad. Another one to kick over to the overworked memeticists in the Public Education Service. Let’s hope these colonials can’t manage to work in counter-mimetics of their own without going over the line.


#2

I’m sorry to say that they can. The Empire is getting gradually richer and more powerful, and is amassing legitimacy. But the colonies are not systematically getting better. The social and political groups against whom the PES exerts itself protect themselves, hiring memetic engineers with funding from wealthy members of the LRA.

You’re right about both the stochastic terrorist attacks and the abreaction from Imperial interventions.

Just to be clear, I initially suggested eugenic and discretionary infanticide. The Empire would have a better chance against a ritual practice.


#3

Terrible tension-filled situations are great sources of adventure, so this is great from a Doylist perspective, as terrible as it is from the Watsonian.