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InvisibleautomanM
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Registered: 09/18/03
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The Replicator
    #7514436 - 10/14/07 03:22 AM (13 years, 7 months ago)

The Replicator


I have to tell you, son, I haven't lived a life as good as it should have been. I could have changed the world, but I couldn't bring myself to do it. I am not sure if it is the standard Father-Son relationship issues, but I have never told you the things I always wanted to say.

For me to properly explain everything I want you to know, let me tell you a bit about your great grandfather. He was a physicist and a damn good one from what I can remember. He worked with Von Braun in Huntsville, Alabama during the Cold War. Together they created a nuclear propulsion system to be used in space travel at some point in the future if the blasted government will ever decide to declassify it. After his work, he started a robotics company. His robots are the ones you see detonating bombs, building automobiles, flying combat missions, and rambling about on other worlds. He got heavily into politics during that time. I guess it was a way to stay in the hunt for more defense contracts. And by “getting heavily into politics”, I mean he was a major contributor to each political party and dozens of candidates. He didn't really care about the politics. He just wanted everyone to know his name and that he was a person to be reckoned with.

That is how your grandfather, my father, got into politics. He did have a head start. Not only did powerful people owe us an audience, but a helping hand. Father went to West Point and though he was never what one would call a great student, he seems to be able to get the right people to notice him at the right time. After graduating dead center of his class, he embarked on the very dangerous war time position of guarding the Statue of Liberty. Not as glamorous as walking the front lines, but he stayed alive which I (and you) are very grateful. He went on to start a company that built apartments for the poor. It wasn't out of a sense of civic purpose as much as guilt. He knew he should help people, but couldn't seem to do as much as he should. He used his newly acquired wealth to make a run for the Senate, which with the help of Grandfather's connections went swimmingly. He became the first member of our family to hold such an esteemed position. I was very proud that he was my father. I'm sure Grandfather would have been equally as proud if he were still alive. I remember starting high school at the dreadfully drab private school in Virginia and being surprised that my father wasn't the only 'Father-Senator' amongst the fellows in my class. Actually, that school seemed a breeding ground for future politicians and captains of industry. I met Vanderbilt's, Rockefeller's, Morgan's, Chaney's, and Roosevelt's just to name a few. Actually, a Morgan is your Godfather. Of course that doesn't mean that if you die, you will go to him. It is more ceremony now. Not that you have much to worry about. You will be 18 in less than a year. But I digress. I should get on with the story.

You can't put inevitability on hold, you know. I graduated from that high school before Father's first term was up and went happily off to Yale. Father wanted me to follow in his footsteps and start a military path, but I would have none of it. While he was trying to groom me for Congress and possibly the Big Chair, it wasn't in the least bit anything I wanted for myself. I fancied myself a playboy. Why should I toil for a lifetime when the family had done well enough before me that I could live a month's lifetimes without as much as making a dent in our family wealth. I understand now that he just wanted me to be a good person, to work for what I received, and to be proud of serving people that couldn't help themselves.

I didn't get to enjoy the playboy lifestyle for very long. Son, you never got to meet your Grandfather, but let me say... he was the kindest,but most driven man you could ever meet. He had the guilt of the rich, but he was strong, as strong as your Great Grandfather. That is why it surprised me when he killed himself on the very day his father killed himself as well. October 22nd. I had believed he missed his Father terribly. Either way, I could no longer live my life of leisure. I had an important decision to make. I needed to serve humanity. I knew the correct answer immediately. I went to work helping eradicate disease in the third world. I rode the well oiled horse of our family connections. I put up our family fortune to do the work. After all, that fortune was meaningless, especially next to the suffering of the infected and dieing. What did money mean to me, after all? We cured hundreds of thousands of people, but the more we cured the harder I had to work. With the help of the wealthiest families in the country, we set up hospitals, nurseries, orphanages, and mobile clinics. I used all the families resources and spent more than the money that was left to me. We did well, but not well enough, I fear.

Let me get back to your Great Grandfather for a minute. I didn't properly explain what he succeeded in accomplishing. On the day Von Braun died, they created a device the world had never seen before. It was a replicator. It could form anything by manipulating electrons, protons, and neutrons. Just keep it stocked with waste materials, it doesn't matter what, and it can create anything that has been created up to that point. A ball cap. A shoe lace. A brick of gold. A diamond. It doesn't matter to the replicator. Your Great Grandfather knew he should give this device to humanity, but he also understood what would happen. Imagine a world where nothing is precious, a world where nothing has value. All monetary systems, and therefore the world economy itself, would collapse. The world would be plunged into a darkness it has not know in a millennium, but would emerge into a light it has never known. A world where a man is held accountable by his deeds, not by his earning power. It would be a world where no one goes without medicine, food, or clothing. The question is, how long will the darkness last? Fifty years? Two hundred years? A thousand years? I have no idea. I was never any good at seeing how these things work. Once your Great Grandfather had used this machine to make a perfect diamond, which is now on display in the Tiffany's window. He used that money to launch his robotics company. I'm not sure if he just got used to the money or feared living out the rest of his days in a world of hell where it is every man for himself that could last a thousand years. I do know he considered this a family curse. That is why the day he killed himself he wrote a letter to my father giving his final wishes, that my Father had two options: 1) He has to give this device to mankind in his lifetime, or 2) He must pass it on to his son with the same requirement.

My Father didn't have the strength to go through the agony of living in a collapsed world so he did the only thing he thought he could do, he decided to serve his fellow citizens in public office. I don't think he found the job as helpful as he thought it would be. After spending 5 years getting muddled down with paper work and the job of politics, he decided to give me a chance to do what needed to be done. We all know how that turned out. I immediately tested the machine and made twenty bricks of solid gold, though I do believe I used the money to do good. What else would I use it on? Money became meaningless to me. This is how I gained the fear. If money meant nothing to me, a person that never wanted for anything, how would it affect a person that has struggled his entire life? How would it affect five billion people like that? I have to admit to you, son, I couldn't bring myself to go through that life and surely I couldn't put you through something that permanently traumatic.

I am my Father's Son as he was his Father's Son and I honor my Father's final wishes as he honored his Father's final wishes. Included with the packet with which this letter was delivered to you are detailed descriptions of how to use the replicators, lists of prominent families that owe us favors (and why they owe us said favors), and a more detailed list of your family history. I give you the gift of deciding for yourself how you will live out your days on this planet. Hopefully you will be able to live without the crushing guilt that has been present in my life from the time my father died until now. I love you, son. Good luck.

I am with you always,
Your Loving Father.
October 22


--------------------
No, no, you're not thinking, you're just being logical. ~ Niels Bohr


Edited by automan (10/14/07 11:43 AM)


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InvisibleClean
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Re: The Replicator [Re: automan]
    #7514976 - 10/14/07 10:10 AM (13 years, 7 months ago)

interesting...i like that it points out the elite nature of politicians.

the author totally lost me at this part though:
Quote:

This is how I gained the fear. If money meant nothing to me, a person that never wanted for anything, how would it affect a person that has struggled his entire life? How would it affect five billion people like that? I have to admit to you, son, I couldn't bring myself to go through that life and surely I couldn't put you through something that permanently traumatic.




sounds like a wonderful thing to me?..maybe they were trying to point out man's knack for adopting extremely irrational and contradictory ideas as though it was perfectly sane..


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InvisibleautomanM
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Re: The Replicator [Re: Clean]
    #7515057 - 10/14/07 10:54 AM (13 years, 7 months ago)

thats kinda the point. if you give it away, then the world economy collapses and you spend the rest of your life fighting for survival in the most basic of ways, but eventually it would usher in a new age when money is meaningless and suffering for lack of food, medicine, water, or anything else would end.

the story is trying to get the reader to decide if he or she would trade an easy existence where he or she can spend an entire lifetime trying to help mankind for a life of misery, toil, and fighting for survival because it wouldnt be until well after you death that the world would stabilize again. but in choosing the easier life, you are actually robbing humanity for an eventual utopia.

choice 1: keep the replicator and live a life of ease in which you can devote all your efforts to helping the poor and needy around the world. but since you aren't helping in the way you know you should, choice 1 comes with a crushing guilt.

choice 2: give the replicator away and watch the world economy fully collapse. watch the world move into a new dark age. chances are you will be murdered or starve to death, as will your children, but be satisfied in the knowledge that you have helped humanity in the long run reach a place much better than anything anyone has imagined before.

i wrote the story late last night and it is just the first draft. it was meant to be a letter to the reader from the reader's father. it was meant to get the reader thinking on what he or she would do in that situation.


--------------------
No, no, you're not thinking, you're just being logical. ~ Niels Bohr


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InvisibleClean
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Re: The Replicator [Re: automan]
    #7515107 - 10/14/07 11:19 AM (13 years, 7 months ago)

:cool:
the hallmark of a good writer to me (or at least one worth reading) is that they prompt you to think, as opposed to just playing with your senses and emotions.


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InvisibleautomanM
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Re: The Replicator [Re: Clean]
    #7515131 - 10/14/07 11:31 AM (13 years, 7 months ago)

ok, i added paragraphs for the people bitching to me in irc :P


--------------------
No, no, you're not thinking, you're just being logical. ~ Niels Bohr


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Invisiblepinkfloydms
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Re: The Replicator [Re: automan]
    #7515716 - 10/14/07 02:55 PM (13 years, 7 months ago)

When does the movie come out?:lol:
You should make this into a book too.


--------------------
Muppet Said:

so yeah:
- 'sex' five times
- once with a man
- once with a cadaver
- and thrice with actual women(all of which were prostitutes)
Best story ever!

www.panicstream.com :thumbup:


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Invisiblemarvoman

Registered: 04/26/05
Posts: 207
Re: The Replicator [Re: pinkfloydms]
    #7515750 - 10/14/07 03:06 PM (13 years, 7 months ago)

Hey mate, that was wicked!


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InvisibleautomanM
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Registered: 09/18/03
Posts: 8,271
Re: The Replicator [Re: pinkfloydms]
    #7538380 - 10/20/07 08:45 AM (13 years, 6 months ago)

Quote:

pinkfloydms said:
When does the movie come out?:lol:
You should make this into a book too.




heh

man, i have my hands full with my first novel to even think about starting another one.


--------------------
No, no, you're not thinking, you're just being logical. ~ Niels Bohr


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InvisibleautomanM
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Re: The Replicator [Re: marvoman]
    #7538381 - 10/20/07 08:46 AM (13 years, 6 months ago)

Quote:

marvoman said:
Hey mate, that was wicked!




thanks, man. i appreciate it.


--------------------
No, no, you're not thinking, you're just being logical. ~ Niels Bohr


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