Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Plurality

"The Singularity Happened.  The Godmachine began, begat, and betook itself Onwards.  Blessed Be the Godmachine.  Blessed and Begone and Goodriddance."
Orthodox piezoelectrically-activated litany embedded within the simultwined holoetching to be found upon all cuprozirconium Dread Pennies left-over from the notorious November Reunification

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--Human beings are attracted to grand, over-arching unified theories that they try to use like philosophical hammers to explain everything and anything, despite the true utility, actual accuracy or real effectiveness of this approach.  It seems to be hardwired into a significant portion of the Pre-Liberation generations.  Many of the sociocultic and religiopolitical relics of the Toxic Age that preceded or survived the Nine Second War and the subsequent chaos of the Decades of Diasporas following the opening of the first of the Sea Gates from Venus to Scylla and Charybdis all partake in one way or another of the lingering folklore that strives to keep alive the notion of a single, all-powerful, all-pervasive, all-inclusive technological Singularity. 


The popular mythology and rhetorical franchises of the latter days of the Toxic Age are absolutely rife with the familiar strains of this peculiar form of philosophical tunnel-vision that was once incredibly wide-spread and hotly debated by ideo-religious whoreverts and fanatical marketer-proselytizers.  Hundreds of high-functioning proto-theoblasts infected with the first stirrings of the fear-rooted Crasher Syndrome arose at this time.  Each one devoted, personally and professionally, to bringing about the Technopoalypse; the End of History (as they declared it in their quaint hubris), or the Hard Crash that would deliver them--and their entire subjective 'world' from the agglomerated and hyper-networked constellation of the resonant feed-back loop comprised of all their accumulated and projected worries, hopes, fears and deep-seated dread and despair. 


A virulent imaginal structure invaded popular culture and infiltrated mainstream academia and the militarized scientific establishment from within the very minds and psyches of those involved in these fields.  The Intelligentsia were the first to be compromised.  The so-called think-tanks and the corporate arbiters of fashion and conformity quickly followed. The best and brightest minds held no particular advantage and were co-opted or contaminated alongside the media-addicted, infantantalized masses they sought to exploit by the first stirrings of a complex of negative memetic fragments that were thrashing about within the collective subconscious of hundreds, then thousands, then millions of otherwise operative human beings.  Aliens didn't have to invade from outer space.  The human race faced colonization by the first generation of semi-autonomous memeticytes---
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"The Singularity happened. Get over it. It was a one-time event and whatever you thought it was going to be, however you hoped it would manifest or feared it might express itself was wrong. Completely off the mark. Anything that you could imagine or describe was by default no longer any part of the then impending Singularity. It was beyond anything anyone could have visualized, predicted or described. It happened. Now we're past all that. It's history. Our history. All of our history. All of us. All."
Zubra Daliskos
Chimpan Scholar and Archivist Emeritus (Retired)
History didn't end with the so-called Singularity; whichever one of the thirty-seven thousand different eschatological, technological, philosophical or mathematical 'singularities' that you subscribe to, believe in, or prefer over the others.  History didn't begin then, either, but no calendar adopts a Year Zero without the implicit and at least tacit acceptance of the fact that there was stuff going on previous to that point in time.  Civilization didn't collapse because of the Singularity, though the ideofascists who violently professed the post-rational One True Path doctrines that grew out of disparate radical elements of various monotheist terrorist splinter-groups did everything in their power to bring everything crashing down through the use of every possible source of disruption and destruction available on the global black market. 

Apocalypses followed atrocities followed cataclysms, and all of them were in turn mitigated, integrated and relegated to the status of historical footnotes by the rapidly developing technologies of what was to eventually become the Deep Infrastructure.

Nightmares of Gray Goo or rampant ecophagy went the way of the the nuclear boogey-man and the celebrity serial-killer; a momentary bit of daintily traipsing about in the limelight followed by a long, slow slide into obscurity as elements of contemporary folklore and underground memeplay.

No one knows for sure when things shifted beyond the scope of everythng that had ever gone before, but they did. They certainly did. The Plurality arose from amidst turmoil, crisis and the vicious kind of senseless violence and stupidity that only the truly ignorant and fearful can commit. It didn't save anyone. It didn't convert people to any particular way of thinking. It did something incredible and unthinkable. It opened the way outwards unto worlds without end and it brought about the end of everything that had been taken for granted prior to that moment when the gates first opened and the Diasporas began.

But it was no utopia. It still isn't. It never will be, really.

Because that's not what it's all about.

It's about exploration, knowledge, living and loving and growing and knowing and going out past the boundaries of the safe zones to build new worlds, create new cultures and to do or make or become things that no one could ever have imagined before the gates granted Liberty to All.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Les Enfants Terribles: Terror Children

Ling's Oni
"Five thousand years and adolescence is only about half-way done for me. I have at least another century to go before my voice cracks or both of my balls finally drop. That's why I terminated our designer and all his family for six generations on either side. That's why I did it and I'm not sorry. So it started a Gate-War? So what? It's not like it cleared-up seven hundred years of acne, now is it? You want to start talking about atrocities? --"
From the Atrocity-show trial of the Third Clonate of Villow Ling  
Death, Dying and Longevity were once very pervasive obsessions amongst the unwashed masses of the Toxic Age, even as these things continue to bedevil and torment the Archaics and the Penitent Tribes of the Periphery.  This was, of course, long before the Helical Cathedraes were first erected, and prior to the zombification of the mobs which took place during the onset of the Necrosophic Revolution. It is also unclear just what roll, if any, the Spiders From Mars may or may not have played in these events. There are conflicting accounts and the records have all been conflated beyond recovery by Revisionists.

Death is, for the most part, a voluntary choice, at least within Polite Society and amongst the Connected Territories of Civilization. True, there are those who stubbornly resist the inexorable current of prevailing trends and who refuse to participate in the various means and schemes by which our minds, our selves can be preserved or renewed, conserved or readjusted so that our span of meaningful life can run so far and so long as we ourselves determine. Dying has become an artform. One mocked by the entirely gauche and completely faux suicides of petulant children and the willfully ill.

Oh accidents do occur, certainly, absolutely they do, such things are by their very nature impossible to eliminate entirely or else the Simixian Hegemenarchy or the Purists or the Pallid Masters of Albusia would all have done so already. But most such deaths are impermanent, transitory affairs handled by insurance policies and other such active instruments.

And certainly there are those whom the Beembalmers spirit away to waxy hexagonal cells to wait out eternity and other such cheats or drop-outs, but they are not of any real interest right now. We are not here to discuss them. We are gathered here to consider those unfortunate orphans of the Toxic Age, the Enfants Terrible.  Holy Terrors.  Terror-Children.

The first generation of the Terror-Children were derived from the forcibly-culled cells of thousands of displaced refugees harvested by masked technicians in service to various competing corporatipolitan non-states, clandestine Precursor-Dynasties and the forces of cultic sociopolitical parastates that arose in the wake of the Collapsalypse that swept across Lower Asia and the Drownded South (this being in the immediate wake of the first unsuccessful Sea Gate having gone terribly wrong due to sabotage). 

Of course other accounts categorically dispute this above-mentioned claim, asserting that the Children were actually created within fortress-installations on Charybdis, or Jezeal, or even hypergeometrical temples on Paldrime. It is doubtful we'll ever really know for sure, and there are those who think that this is due to some deliberate effort on the part of the Children who guard their secrets very jealously, even from one another.

Whatever the true location of their birth, they were assembled, compiled, and composed within wombpods by faceless drones in service to soulless tyrants.  As the telepoet Vu Chong has posted in his Lament of the Children--they were designed to be powerful weapons for a war that was over before it could even truly begin.

The wombpods were hacked, according to some. Humans ultimately make lousy weapons say others. All that is certain is that the children who were born of this particular process were...odd..not at all what their designers, composers, shapers or compilers had expected, nor were they what their tyrannical masters demanded.

The Children of the wombpods were planned to be functional immortals, amongst several dozen other such things. Their immune systems, endocrine systems and in fact every other system of their bodies were tweaked, enhanced, modified and re-designed to bring about every advantage and adaptation that they would need to fulfill their destinies. Whether or not that was to serve as hosts for the transplanted brainstems of their masters, or to crew gigantic ships that would have been sent out amongst the voidplaces between the stars no one really knows any longer.

The one fact that is beyond dispute is that because of the deep tampering with their biological processes, the Children were locked in a neotonous form of perpetual adolescence for multiple thousands of years. They would suffer wildly unstable hormonal fluxes and have an extended, hellishly protracted puberty that would last longer than most nations had histories. Many of them sought ways to rectify this matter, but the designs of their makers were every bit as draconian as their would-have-been masters. The Children could look forward to lifespans that might easily endure millions of years. They would regrow any severed limbs, heal from the worst traumas, resist radiation at least as well as cockroaches, and more, much more--but only if they never tampered with their own genes. Malicious failsafe mechanisms were embedded within their cells.

The Writhing Mass of Berlin may originally have been one of these Children who attempted to self-revise their genetics.

The Kafkesques may also have begun as the aftermath of another such attempt.

The Children responded to these things as any overtaxed, overwrought and overstimulated adolescent in the throes of existential horror would do. They lashed out.

Villow Ling chose a path of violence and atrocity that has served as an unholy source of inspiration to such artists of destruction as Imiten Varu and the AI Appollyon.

Verdajji Haunfure, one of only two Terror Children apart from Villow Ling to ever offer any sort of explanation, statement or testimony on their behalf, has been quoted as saying:
"Our so-called masters never consulted with us first, before proceeding with our creation. Of course their inability to conceive of how to do such a thing ought to have been enough of an obstacle to have given any truly rational intellect reason to pause, but not them. No. Not them. And they dare to call us the monsters. Or at least they did before we ended them."
Excerpted from A First Statement,
Attributed to Verdajji Haunfure
Haunfure, a self-declared spiritual anarchist was one of the driving forces behind the First Diaspora, an event that he worked to bring about primarily to provide him the means to achieve his ideal of dynamic solitude as outlined in the Lonely Book, a manifesto of sorts derived from the ecstatic analysis of the clues and puzzles embedded within A First Statement by three generations of failed ascetics who claimed to have some sort of direct biological relationship to Haunfure. All evidence of the three nuns were destroyed within the atomic fires of the Tyrant's Last Gasp, when nuclear weapons were exchanged amongst the Restricted Powers of Old Earth for the final time.

It is Haunfure who is blamed most often by RetConists, ReConstructionites, certain fashionable Sociatrist-Cliques, and others as the prime mover and very devil behind the mass dismantling of the great cities of Old Earth and the waves of forced emmigration that are now termed the Diasporas.  No one has ever proven this claim. No one disputes it either. Only a few Scholars with shaky reputations and weak sword arms ever bother to investigate or research the matter any longer. It's just not fashionable, nor will it lead to any sort of promotion or recognition and it might derail one's path to tenure, acclaim or a cushy fellowship.

It is considered an unfortunate fact of history that the Sea Gates preceeded the birth of Haunfure and his kin by more than a hundred years.  Of course most conventional scholars dismiss such a discrepancy as too small to even bother worrying about.

It is likewise considered an unfortunate and thoroughly unpleasant matter to dredge-up any sort of discussion regarding the means by which the Terror Children were created. While tragic and hateful, and oh so regrettable, of course it is very regrettable, it is something that took place well before the Genomic Edicts or even the first conclaves or salons of the Dabblers and Predecessors who set the stage for modern Genartistry to develop. Discussing such a thing is both impolite and about as useful as comparing the opinions of Illiterates in regards to something almost as ancient and pointless as the conspiracy to cover-up the scandalous roots of chemistry in Alchemy with all the attendant assassinations, intoxications and so forth that go along with it. It is wise to remain silent if one would dare to pick at old wounds that may not be entirely healed even now. All knowledge comes at a price. Knowledge such as involved the Terror Children is dangerous, volatile stuff. You don't truly want to know any more than you already do. Honestly. Take a hint.

There's no point and nothing to gain by looking into the matter, save perhaps an early retirement, or a forced descent into irrelevancy. As is said in Academic Circles: 'A bald-faced freshman won't even bother stabbing you over it.' To say that such a subject is unpopular or perhaps detrimental to one's career would be an understatement.

The Public Domain is filled with the partially deleted, mostly destroyed and thoroughly garbled databris left in the wake of the Spazm.  That's the term for the total spontaneous annhiliation of all datasystems in the immediate access of the telepathic capabilities of the Terror Children. They literally destroyed all records and disrupted all connected servers, mainframes, datacaches, nodes, and anything else that was connected into the hardened military datasystems of their once and never masters. Satellites evaporated. The prehistoric prototype of the worldnet crashed and fragmented in ways inconceivable to all known science of the time.

A new age dawned. It was an age of gods and monsters, of heroes and villains, and terrible things beyond all prior imagining.  It was the Singularity, but not as anyone might have hoped to have recognized it. It was the beginning, the raw and bloody and horrible first gasping breath of the Plurality. But first came the Terror.

The Terror is an event that still resonates across all the Known Worlds and beyond. It is perhaps best summed up by Scyllis Matreche, reputed to be the Founding Mother of the Scylloi, who has only ever bothered to register the following words within the Public Domain:
"Monsters. I shall show you what true monsters are."





"In films, we are trained by the American way of moviemaking to think we must understand and 'get' everything right away. But this is not possible. When you eat a potato, you don't understand each atom of the potato!"

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Of Talibarr

Talibarr is a large moon orbiting a gas-giant within a binary solar-system. It is also a city that has grown to encompass and cover nearly all of the surface and much of the sub-surface of the moon. It has been cut-off from the Known Worlds for just over 500 years* due to the direct hacking of the gates by the now-defunct faction known as the Azure Wrath, a group of bio-fanatics who sought to establish a bizarre utopia by eliminating all humans, except themselves, and establishing a geno-socialist caste-based hierarchical society that they would administer on behalf of the poor benighted urfolk whom they selflessly sought only to empower and make equal with the rest of the races of the Known Worlds.


The promised paradise perished within the first minutes of the Severing, when the gates to the outside were shut down forcibly. The Azure Wrath lasted less than a dozen years before they were finally extinguished by their own internecine squabbles. One of their number unleashed a proscribed weapon-form so horrific in nature that to this day it is only referred to as the actual Azure Wrath and is rumored to be a gaunt figure clad in ragged clothes, covered in supporating sores, and masked as though about to attend a revel of some macabre sort.

Crows, rats, roachers, rolly-pollies, possuns, and other animal-descended races have had five hundred years to integrate themselves into the ruined and failing infrastructure of Talibarr. Spiders have taken over the canals, worm-things claim certain decrepit areas no one else will challenge them for, and the myriad hybrids, halfcastes, and rampant experiments of the madmen and monsters of the Azure Wrath hunt, prowl and own the worlds still linked by the Seagates that string together the Moons of Shuubra into an archipelago of worlds unto themselves.

And into this maelstrom of decay and collapse, of bitterness and betrayal comes a lowly drijj, obscure beyond reckoning, worthless and without a clue. Pitiful and tiny, a mutant creature whose blood is so tainted and toxic that even the spiders won't take him, a pathetic figure mocked by pigeons and somehow, the one person who can make things right again. Perhaps.
 
*See: The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of at the Talibarr blog for some idea of how that ended.  More details on Talibarr, the moons and worlds of the Archipelago, and related matters will be available at the Talibarr blog or here, at the Riskail blog, or both. Everything will be cross-linked. Fiction centered around the Talibarrian Archipelago will be consolidated over at Riskail Fiction. The adventures of Rist amongst the ruins of the Talibarrian city-moon have only just begun.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Dumbshows

 
“The Blue Room had in prehistoric times been added to by taking in a superfluous passage, and so not only had the advantage of two doors, but enabled us to get to the head of the stairs without passing the chamber wherein our dragon-aunt lay couched. It was rarely occupied, except when a casual uncle came down for the night. We entered in noiseless file, the room being plunged in darkness, except for a bright strip of moonlight on the floor, across which we must pass for our exit. On this our leading lady chose to pause, seizing the opportunity to study the hang of her new dressing-gown. Greatly satisfied thereat, she proceeded, after the feminine fashion, to peacock and to pose, pacing a minuet down the moonlit patch with an imaginary partner. This was too much for Edward's histrionic instincts, and after a moment's pause he drew his single-stick, and with flourishes meet for the occasion, strode onto the stage. A struggle ensued on approved lines, at the end of which Selina was stabbed slowly and with unction, and her corpse borne from the chamber by the ruthless cavalier. The rest of us rushed after in a clump, with capers and gesticulations of delight; the special charm of the performance lying in the necessity for its being carried out with the dumbest of dumb shows.”

'The Blue Room' from The Golden Age by Kenneth Grahame
Outside the major Casinos and their carefully controlled Arena, there is a second-string of third-rate Arenatainment Affiliates who develop and distribute the Dumbshows--literally violent entertainments aimed at the lowest common denominator of any given marketing niche or isolated demographic.  The black marketeers of Corazune finance many of the Dumbshows.  They are exceptionally well-received amidst the lower ranks of the popularity-driven mediocratic Corazunian social hierarchy.  The Dumbshows are also the last bastion of disreputable genartists, genehacks, and other biomantic scum who have abandoned any pretense at morals, turned their backs on the venerable Code of Conduct all Genartists (yes, even Boluth and Lorshal) share in common.  The depraved showbiz families of the Dumbshows are all made up entirely of clonechildren designed, derived, developed and delivered into a life of servitude directly from their geneparents.  They are literally their own slaves, their own property.  The showbiz families breed their own specially-prepared and modified clones, all of which are just barely at the threshold of consciousness, and thus technically little more than ambulatory tissue cultures, and thus property, not people.  The matter has been hotly debated and contested innumerable times over the years, but no regime or government has ever successfully addressed the question of clonetestant rights. Young and non-tenured conspiracy-advocates often delight in demonstrating the tangled web of conflicting interests and unethical manipulations, assassinations, extorion and worse that has grown-up in the foul shadows of the Dumbshows.  Those that make their point too well usually wind up deleted, abducted, or rendered nonpersons.  Those with tenure don't discuss such sensitive matters outside of certain approved academic circles.
 
Send in the Clonetestants
Each microcephalic clone is reworked, tweaked, customized and equipped according to marketing research, online polls, viewer feedback, and a host of other means and methods of which the Marketeers of Corazune don't discuss outside their Chambers of Commerce.  Various grades of prosthetic AI are used to provide the clones with a precisely calibrated and hierarchically comparable form of basic intelligence.  This levels the playing field.  All the clones begin at the same, exact level of stupidity and only by their specific experiences, unique interactions and personal explorations can they learn anything or develop any sort of repertoire over and above the baseline.  The clonetestants enter the stages and sets of the Dumbshows virtually blank slates.  They either learn quickly, or they get cancelled, often gruesomely and spectacularly, for the Audience craves excitement, enjoys audacity, demands satisfaction--but it will always accept blood, guts and gore.  The Audience is a faceless mob caught-up in the exhiliration of visceral feedback and the addictive ecstasy of second-hand violence.
 
Clonetestants are configured along the accepted norms for Basic humanoids, though some family-stables have allowed various forms of semi-controlled mutation amongst their offspring in the hopes of developing a legal and permissable edge.  Some are cybernetically-augmented, but these sorts of clonetestants compete in their own categories and under very stringent rules that date back to the Mechistophelean Jihad.
 
The various family-stables of clonetestants are managed directly by the core-parent, the gene-donor from whom all that lineage of clones are directly derived.  These Manager-parents have a direct, immediate, and totally personal stake in their showbiz family and they literally live or die based upon the performance of their hyper-modified clonechildren.  The Audience feedback is not limited to merely votes, it escalates as the stakes rise and the clonetestants pass each stage or set, reaching incredible levels that are not only deeply damaging, but more addictive than either politiporn or murderballadry combined.
 
Not So Stupid
But the Dumbshows are not simple gladiatorial matches nor are they vulgar battles staged with no narrative or style--far from it.  Holophasic recreations of the greatest battles fought within the warzones and even deep within the Maze of Patriots are already available and in widespread circulation, mostly derived from the distilled memories of Veterans or compiled by very expert revisionist scholars.  The Casino-Arenas have a monopoly on nearly all sanctioned gladiatorial combats, and related violent Arenatainments.  All the accumulated programming, data and corpus of popular entertainment from the centuries was in the Public Domain.  Not sanctioned by one of the Great Houses or some other Power, the Dumbshows are barred from contributing competitors to the Great Games, so the Dumbshows have had to pursue a more novel and peculiar avenue to carve out their own particular niche within the entertainment-ecology.  They allow the Audience to design and construct challenges, mazes, labyrinths and other puzzles or obstacle courses for the clonetestants to explore, battle within, or escape from--all depending upon the Audience's level of participation and whatever special features the parental managers deem appropriate for the current installment.  There is a thriving underground market for pre-designed Dumbshow stages and sets which then get lobbed into the voting frenzy to compete with the sketches of wicked children, scenario-maps submitted by aging eremite-gamists, holographic construct-diagrams contributed by slumming Jontolon virtulects with low tastes.  Those designs, ideas or fragments of ideas get compiled and jumbled together--often randomly--into a fresh hodge-podge of deadly and delightful surprises for the clonetestants to experience.
 
Set & Setting
The stages and sets used in any particular installment of a Dumbshow is voted on as though it were one more clonetestant.  Particularly well-received and popular stages or sets get re-used and entered into tournaments against other stages and sets, the ultimate winner of these contests becomes one of the Top Twelve All-Time Greatest Challenges which are only viewable to registered subscibers and the usual pirate accounts.  Those members of the Audience who have contributed the most work to the competing stages & sets are a highly motivated and competitve group.  They live and die by merit of their reputations.  Sometimes literally.  Not only do most of the top designers engage in duels over their designs or to enhance their reputations, those who ascend to the Top Twelve rankings are expected to stake their own lives on the outcome of an installment utilizing their personally modified and enhanced designs for their masterpiece stage or set.  Those who decline the challenge lose a great deal of prestige, suffer a major lose in reputation and drop in the rankings to the point where a lot of up-and-comers are almost certain to begin challenging them in order to leap-frog the apparently lame duck.  Disappoint the Audience and your career is finished.  At least until you can stage a comeback, but those rarely go well and very few ever succeed, and none do so without substantial backing from the more prominent showbiz families, focus groups, or one of the Casinos who sometimes try-out the Dumbshows as a possible low-end investment.
 
Clonetestants who make it through each stage or set are allowed to keep whatever weapons or gear they can pick up along the way.  They can also gain credits that their parent-managers use to upgrade their sub-systems according to the Blue List.  Unlisted mods are frowned upon and can result in the suspension of a parent-manager and the termination of their family-stable.  The types of shows that make use of freely modified clonetestants tend to be very marginal, short-term, and ultimately not terribly popular, mostly because they are so unbalanced and just not very entertaining, at least amongst the more civilized worlds--there are very idiosyncratic versions of the Dumbshows based in Gilpoy (a sub-node dome-clave in Xembor), as well as a rather bizarre off-shoot featured in Jezeal that has subsequently began to filter into the Jevpa/Bazra markets within the Domain of Three Suns.  But for the most part, these are very small-time and obscure programs of little note except to a dedicated enthusiast.
 
Vote Early, Vote Often
The most popular Dumbshows combine the interpersonal dramatics of antique reality scripts and traditional soap operas with challenging athletic competitions and loads of crowd-pleasing violence. But unlike minimalist wrestling, clone combats, Casino-run gladiator matches or the hyper-regimented puglilist fights, Dumbshows employ narrative to frame the violence and to give each installment more appeal, both in terms of the livecast and the archived (and edited) recasts as well.  The Audience votes for their favorite scenarios, the best clonetestants, and for the specific stages & sets used in each installment.  Those  receiveing the most votes get the most perks or a shot at going on to the next round.  Those getting the lowest voter turn-out are retired or sent to one of the Farms for revision and restructuring, unless the parent-manager decides to just recycle the matter or reprocess the tissue/biomass--sometimes they will auction off particularly valuable offspring to collectors, fans or artists such as the insane genius Grigmar.  In the Dumbshows, a clonetestant's life and death depends on the votes of the Audience as much or more as their ability to beat the various tricks, traps, obstacles or challenges they must face.
 
The Top Twelve Dumbshows
  1. Molly & Polly
  2. Snuffles the Deathclown
  3. Down the Tubes
  4. Audience Choice (New Format)
  5. Ten Little Lost Lambs
  6. Bad Land Battle
  7. Survival of the Fittest
  8. Hey Piranesi!
  9. Break Out Or Die Trying
  10. Deep Dark Downwards
  11. Deathscapes & Murderscenes
  12. A Better Mousetrap
Rumors & Marketing Innuendo
There are rumors of cults and other collectives forming gene-consortiums that could break the monopoly of the showbiz families once and for all.  These consortiums would be able to draw upon a much wider range of genestocks and inheritable traits, making them more versatile and adaptable than the monoline ultra-inbred families that dominate the Dumbshows currently.  Perhaps this is another scheme by some mid-level Promoter from one of the Casinos, but there are those who believe it is the carefully orchestrated plan of some Jontolon-based Gamer who is playing at some weird sort of macro-game.
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