March 6th, 2004


For the Daniel Quinn readers

A thought occurred to me yesterday that kinda creeped me out in how much sense it made.

Remember in My Ishmael, when Ishmael explains the concept of the Erratic Retaliator strategy?

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So the thought that occurred to me was this. What consequences occur when you take the Erratic Retaliator strategy and push it to a global scale? Meaning, you're a tribe in today's Earth, where your "neighboring tribes" can be anywhere in the world. How do you apply the model of Erratic Retaliator?

The answer that speedball gave when I asked him was a good one. He said you go to war with Iraq. It may be the wrong target, but that's still essentially what's happening. Although I'm not sure we fall into the "Erratic" part of the program - mostly we're just Retaliators.

But I went a step further back. If you're a tribe in today's Earth and you want to make sure you Give As Good as You Get, but not be too predictable (in order to ensure that all your neighbors know you're not to be trifled with) throw a couple of airplanes into some highly recognizable buildings.

Took me two and a half years to get that thought, but it really does apply. Ick.