Clearly I'm a superior being

| Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Hi.  I'm back.  Graduate school failed to kill me, despite putting in one hell of an effort.  It turns out that doing a cost-benefit analysis on fire department consolidation is very difficult.  Our master spreadsheet has a larger file size than some of the games I remember playing  in the 90s.  I've used terms like "flow of data" when describing it and did not mean it ironically, sarcastically, or even to make myself sound more impressive.  Except just now.

I'd like to talk about the rash of world conquests that have been plaguing the world lately.  These used to be rare events.  Hitler, Ghengis Khan, the United Nations, the list of attempted world conquerors is short.  Until recently.  It seems that we cant go a week or two without hearing that a young adult has gathered a tribe around himself and begun capturing territory, investing in technology, and bribing allies.  Just last week Nebraska was overrun.  Oregon the month before.  Did we forget two months ago when Dallas was temporarily turned into a city-state and sought the assistance of Oklahoma and Mexico in the conquest of Texas?

We could blame tribalism, the easy availability of libraries and beakers, or the way eating a lot of wheat makes babies magically appear.  But those are all symptoms.  The true problem is the psychology.  The true problem is that too many young people are playing too many games that glorify world conquest.  They pick up the habit.  They become desensitized to the methodical elimination of rival cultures through careful plotting of alliances and military force.  We're seeing the evidence every day.  As world conquest simulators have become more common and more advanced, so has the rate of attempted world conquest risen.

I seem to be immune to this problem.  While I grew up playing Command and Conquer, later moving on to the various iterations of the Civilization series, I have never planned, let alone attempted, to conquer the world.  Maybe I'm just a superior being that can recognize that games are reality are different and who does not learn how to interact with the world from clearly-fictional games.

Maybe I've just never acted because my parents always modeled good behavior, never using world conquest to solve their problems.  Maybe I just never had easy access to culturally-similar followers who blindly follow my orders.  Or maybe I'm just a superior being who is immune to the horrifying influence of these so-called games based on world conquest.


Celendus said...

And that's to say nothing of domestic Conquest, either. Husbands conquering kitchens, wives conquering sofas. Workplace conquest, even -- I worked with a fellow who no through no fault of his own had half his cubicle annexed by Accounting. I told him he should talk to HR and they asked him to pay tribute! Talk about blaming the victim.

Anonymous said...

It would be very easy to lay the blame on Bobby Kotick but if you know a more ethical 100% effective method of creating an army of mindless combat trained automatons I'd like to hear it.

Ephemeron said...

Or maybe you're secretly building a ship to Alpha Centauri to snag a victory right from under the world-conquerer's noses.

Klepsacovic said...

@Celendus: "It is from their foes, not their friends, that cubicles learn the lesson of building high walls."

@Anonymous: Clones.

@Ephemeron: Fusion is taking forever!

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