We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Refelections on wealth from City 17

Sometimes you do not quite appreciate a thing until you find you can not get it. In the game Half Life: Alyx (one of the best things you can do in virtual reality right now), the Earth is oppressed by totalitarian inter-dimensional rulers and the player must roam the deserted, alien biohazard-infested quarantined streets of City 17 as part of a resistance attempting to sabotage enemy super-weapons. Needless to say luxuries are hard to come by. It is all a bit close to the bone for a game that was in development for four years and released on March 23rd.

As Alyx, controlled by the player, has to make her way down a dark, slime-soaked, head-crab-infested passageway, she asks her friend Russ to talk about the past to provide some comfort. What was life like before the coro^H^H^H^H Combine? “Alyx, have you ever heard of a club sandwich?” Er, nope, not once.

Right. To make a club sandwich, you need to start with bread. Not from a bread line. From a bakery across the street, baked that day, okay? You add tomatoes, lettuce — not vegetable paste — fresh. Then you add bacon — that’s from an animal we used to call the pig. You toast the bread, and you put all that inside it.

You guys had all that? That’s insane.

It is! And I’m not done. Then you add a second sandwich on top of the first one. You put ham in it — also from a pig — and turkey, from an animal we used to call the “turkey,” and more tomato, more lettuce, and a bunch of other things I’m forgetting. It was six inches tall and weighed a pound and had a dozen ingredients from five different continents. It was the most impossible food item you could imagine in any age before ours.

Wow. That does sound pretty amazing. I am really going to appreciate my next club sandwich.

6 comments to Refelections on wealth from City 17

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYO3tOqDISE

    There is an essay on what it takes to make a pencil. Here, it’s been made into an animated film.

  • Felipe Grey

    Still don’t get why Bacon and Ham and Beef and Steak are not referred to as pig or cow, but turkey is always turkey and chicken is always chicken. Is it because we do not like the words ‘pig’ or ‘cow’?

  • Paul Marks

    For many years we defended Big Business against the Marxists – but, at least in recent years, most of them have actively supported the Marxists. Most of Big Business is, mostly, actively working for a society such as “City 17”.

    Are Corporate managers the innocent victims of the Marxist indoctrination of the schools and universities? Do they “know not what they do” when the support Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and all the rest of the Marxist movement? Or is it more cynical – a desire to get rid of individual “share holders” (owners – who would be destroyed by “President Biden’s” Capital Gains Tax and Income Tax schemes) and end to COMPETITION.

    Government regulations (such as the “lockdowns” which have nothing to do with public health) and the Big Business SUPPORTED “Black Lives Matter” riots have destroyed many small business enterprises – thus handing over the economy to handful of Corporations who get their money from the Federal Reserve, the Bank of England and other Central Banks – and the “pet” commercial banks they support.

    We know that in some cases the support for the Marxists (and the puppets of the Marxists – such as the senile Mr Joseph Biden) is NOT innocent.

    For example, Jeff Bezos (the creator of Amazon – one of the mega corps that has benefited vastly from the “lockdowns” which-have-nothing-to-do-with-public-health, and from the riots, looting and burning of small business enterprises – which-have-nothing-to-do-with-Mr-George-Floyd) is NOT indoctrinated by the Marxist dominated schools and universities.

    Mr “Jeff” Bezos does NOT believe in the Collectivism the “Washington Post” pushes every day – but he owns this publication and can not possibly be ignorant of the evil it pushes.

    the bitter truth is that some of the Big Business types who are, indirectly, pushing a society such as City 17 are not innocent dupes of Marxist indoctrination in the schools and universities.

    Some, SOME, of the Big Business types know exactly what they are doing as they push “World Governance” and Collectivism – they know it will lead to terrible poverty and tyranny.

    They know it will lead to terrible poverty and tyranny – and they DO NOT CARE.

  • Rob Fisher (Surrey)

    Agreed, that quote did bring to mind the pencil.

    Zero Sugar thanks for the chicken sandwich love link, it’s very educational. I notice he used a lot of things he didn’t make himself, like a plastic bottle!

  • In the Society For Creative Anachronism, one of the storied feats is sheep-to-garb. You raise a sheep, shear it, comb and clean and spin the wool, weave it into cloth, make such dyes as your circumstances allow, and turn it into clothing. This has been done. (I suspect the seamstress did not make the shears, nor the dye-pot, but whorls and looms are commonly made, and bone needles are not hard.)

    I suspect nobody recent has done the bog-iron to sword bit completely. If nothing else, the anvil and hammer would have to be made from scratch to do it properly. I’ve seen bog iron smelted and forged into iron ingots on YouTube, but a pre-existing anvil and trip hammer were used. That’s stepping pretty far away from doing it from scratch.

    The chicken sandwich was too hard to ignore. But the sandwich – and the pencil – show how many kinds of craft need to be gathered together. They don’t have to all be in the same place, of course, but it shows what a web of interactions our society is. A proper web is a sturdy thing. Socialists or communists want to gather all the strands of the web in one place, so they can control it all. That can work for a while, but eventually Comrade Stalin will pitch a fit over something – and since he’s the one where all the strands of the web come together, he can ruin the whole thing in one fit of rage.