- CRITTER TALK
- NEWS I FIND INTERESTING
The daily announcement was just loud enough to wake him, even with the white noise machine and his device under its own pillow, but it was designed to do just that. Switched off or volume muted, it would activate. In fact what had been designed or had been sold as a way for the president to directly inform the public of some emergency or other required one to press a button which assured someone, somewhere, that the recipient had read the regular 6 AM presidential announcements.
He really didn’t read a word of course. He couldn’t without his glasses, and besides, these things were incoherent rants and lists of enemies of the state and denials of the few accusations of misprision that made it to the public awareness. Of course many if not all of those were transparently false and obviously made up by the White House or its news agency Fox to create the tableau of a president beleaguered by unpatriotic Hillerites and the Deep State. People had become used to ignoring “the media” anyway and it wasn’t good to be a subscriber to any independent news source if you wanted to keep your job. Gregor certainly did. Pressing “read and accepted” was a reflex.
When the system went into operation shortly after the Great Victory of 2020, the armchair resistance fussed and bothered and declared and wrote petitions and even pledged to destroy their devices, but few did. It wasn’t mandatory at that point to own and carry one, but life was difficult now without what many still called a smartphone. One couldn’t carry more than $20 in cash without reporting it and there was no other way to pay for things or verify one’s identity or drive a car or to vote of course. Not that there were many elections anymore in these days of the Emergency Election Protection Act. We all just assumed there was still a congress that operated separately from the Executive. The president’s massive majority had been declared constantly and every January on Victory Day, there was a military parade.
We assumed that the Alaska Secession was approved by Congress and we had to read the assurance that rumors about the president receiving a huge compensation package from what was really the sale of that state to the Russian Federation were false and that the agreement by Russia to stand fast with us against NATO was no quid pro quo.
But today’s update or today’s Tweet as some still called it was to announce the nomination of a famous televangelist with no legal background to the Supreme Court had been confirmed in secret by the Senate, transcripts, of course, were not available for security reasons. The Reverend Holliday was concerned about his safety because, after all, remnants of the Liberal resistance were always to be feared.
But who had time to read or to worry? Gregor had little enough time to get ready and get to his job bagging groceries at Trump-Mart. Without it and without any hope of medical insurance or social security he was doomed to die and decrease the surplus population. He pushed the “read and accepted” button and with a groan got out of bed feeling like a human cockroach.