Just ahead of Episode Twelve of The Fixed Period, a reminder that on Friday I'll be conducting another Clubland Q&A live around the planet at 5pm North American Eastern/10pm British Summer Time. Steyn Clubbers ask the questions, and I try to answer them.
Thank you again for your kind comments about this latest and all our other Tales for Our Time. Nearly five years ago now, we launched this series of audio adventures on a whim, threw it together somewhat hastily, and learned on the job. So I'm enormously grateful for your appreciation of it. Anthony Trollope's sole venture in dystopian fiction The Fixed Period is our counterintuitively vernal diversion, and it has prompted a wide range of reaction. John Saunders, a Bedfordshire member of The Mark Steyn Club, writes:
I'm fascinated by one of the Britannulist's comments about Britannula's Sovereignty Laws over British law. We have abolished the stain of 'Capital Punishment' .Yet, President Neverbend is advocating mandatory euthanasia for people reaching 67 1/2. So , if a Britannula citizen commits murder, he/she is not hanged, but presumably faces some punishment. However, the citizens of this benighted country, whether innocent or not, face state-instigated murder for the crime of living until 67 1/2.
I know it is fiction, but this twisted logic would reach the pinnacle of the annals of absurdities! I'm not sure who said this on one of Mark Steyn's podcasts, if at all, but someone remarked:- If people are encouraged to accept absurdities in life, they are more likely to commit atrocities. Obviously WOKE LGBT comes to mind. I wonder why the visiting British officials did not challenge their hosts on this. Perhaps Anthony Trollope will highlight this in following episodes.
Oh, don't worry about that, John. But I'm surprised you're surprised: Your own country subscribes to such "twisted logic" all the time. The murderer of Sir David Amess cannot be hanged, but you have "state-instigated murder" when, for example, the parents of a child with a rare medical condition seek the court's permission to take her overseas for a non-NHS-approved treatment. What matters is changing fashions in what constitutes "the greater good". Once upon a time it would have been acceptable to execute a convicted terrorist for "the greater good". Now executing blameless sexagenarians - discreetly, out of sight, whether in fancy Swiss clinics or rather more basic UK "care" homes - accords with contemporary notions of "the greater good".
In tonight's episode of The Fixed Period, the Britannula/England cricket match is coming down to a spectacular finale:
On the last day feelings were carried to a pitch which was more befitting the last battle of a great war,—some Waterloo of other ages,—than the finishing of a prolonged game of cricket. Men looked, and moved, and talked as though their all were at stake. I cannot say that the Englishmen seemed to hate us, or we them; but that the affair was too serious to admit of playful words between the parties. And those unfortunates who had to stand up with Jack were so afraid of themselves that they were like young country orators about to make their first speeches. Jack was silent, determined, and yet inwardly proud of himself, feeling that the whole future success of the republic was on his shoulders.
~Membership in The Mark Steyn Club is not for everyone, but it helps support all our content - whether in print, audio or video - and keep it available for everyone, around the world. Indeed, we now provide more free content each week than ever before in our nineteen-year history. And, aside from Tales for Our Time, being a Steyn Club member does come with a few other benefits:
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Please join me tomorrow for Part Thirteen of The Fixed Period, a few hours after our Clubland Q&A.