There's some reaction these days that holds scientists responsible for war. Take it one step further: What happens if "book-learnin'" is held responsible...? A blackmarket in forbidden knowledge!
the politics, and particularly the enforcement of the laws, in this state, are unbelievably corrupt, but I wonder--"
Mongery paused. "Just a moment; I see a flash bulletin being brought in." The novice Literate came to his side and gave him a slip of paper, at which he glanced. Then he laughed heartily.
"It seems that shortly after I began speaking, the local blue-ribbon grand jury issued a summons for Chief Delaney to appear before them, with all his records. Unfortunately, the summons could not be served; Chief Delaney had just boarded a strato-rocket from Tom Dewey Field for Buenos Aires." He cocked an eye at the audience. "I know Irish is going to have a nice time, down there in the springtime of the Southern Hemisphere. And, incidentally, the Argentine is one of the few major powers which never signed the World Extradition Convention of 2087." He raised his hand to his audience. "And now, until tomorrow at breakfast, sincerely yours for Cardon's Black Bottle, Elliot C. Mongery."
Interesting idea but confused plot and weak characters make this a dull read.
One of the finest of Piper's works. It is a tale in which all people who read are in a high tech scribes class, and treat other people badly. A frightening tale, but hopeful