“But Aristotle has written—” “Forget Aristotle. [He] only covers research and development. This is consumer marketing.” “Which philosopher should I have studied to comprehend consumer marketing?” “Munchhausen.”
Absurd? Of course, it’s absurd; that’s the point. But better written than many similar tales of the silliness of modern life. Better-than-average advocacy fiction.
“So you lied to yourself.” “The first symptom of true intelligence. Selective self-deception. How’s that for a Turing test?”
Still, I don’t recommend this to sensitive, introspective readers. It’s satire, as subtle as a Mack truck. Rude, crude and full of platitudes, though Ruff allows viewpoints other than his own stage time—if only to knock down their strawmen. And lots of profanity.
“What makes war terrible isn’t that the soldiers are men; it’s that men are soldiers. Let women become soldiers—or politicians, or diplomats—and you haven’t changed war at all.”
Ironic. What actually happening in the first two decades of the twenty-first century was as improbably as what Ruff wrote. (He mentions Cray PCs several times. Many may not recognize that reference to the super-computer pioneer, killed in a stupid auto accident about the time Ruff published.) And wrong. Remember when faxes were a big deal? Remember faxes?
“Thanks to the New York Times, newspaper of record, for confirming that even in a rational universe, ‘far-fetched’ is a relative term.”