Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sneak peek: an excerpt from "Human Suffrage"

Regardless of who wins, the 2016 elections will finally bring an end to the so-called "third and fourth Bush terms in office." McCain will be out, and a popularity rating below 15%, it seems unlikely that the Republicans will be able to gain a foothold in this year's election. Henry probably doesn't even need to head to the polls today, but generations before him would turn in their graves if he did not.

He takes an early lunch break and strolls down to City Hall, only a few blocks from his firm's office. The RFID chip in his wrist clears him for fastlane entry; he proceeds to the executive lane where two armed guards perform a quick strip search, and is on his way to the voting booths in less than ten minutes.

Henry presses his wrist against the booth's entry terminal. "Henry Langston Hughes, African/Caucasian, 62. History of blood pressure, diabetes. Registered Democrat. Sixth district." The machine pauses, considering the information it has just listed. It consults with the central server in Green, Ohio. "Your vote is not needed. Thank you for your time."

Henry blanches. "What!?"

"Your demographic has been accurately sampled to the required degree of statistical accuracy. No more data is required. Your vote is not needed. Thank you for your time."

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