Election Over

Government Wins


Fifth Estate # 318, Fall, 1984

Government rule was reaffirmed Nov. 6 by a slim majority as only a scant 52.3% of voting-age Americans overcame apathy and disgust enough to enter the polling booth.

Flushed with victory, President Ivan P. Pavlov read his acceptance speech via a talking computer, announcing that the hitherto secret war against the Life Force would be declared official; that more laws would be passed and more police deployed “for the protection of all Americans”; and that more citizens would be mobilized into Service Brigades to fight the Enemy in Eurasia and to increase Production. He welcomed the statement of congratulations sent by Mr. B.F. “Fritz”, Skinner, leader of the Loyal Opposition, which called for National Unity, the continuance of law and order and respect for Authority, the quarantine of Enemy Nations in the Southern Hemisphere, and the rationalization of economic policies. “Sweeping changes will be made,” promised the computer in a startlingly human-sounding voice, “so that our operations can continue unimpeded.” The President urged Americans to return to their homes and workplaces to await further orders; adding, “Don’t call us, we’ll call you.”

Comes When Called

During the news conference, an anonymous individual began shouting from the back of the room. He was arrested by security officers, who confiscated a small leaflet which he was distributing. It read in part, “The voter is a man who comes where he is summoned one day like a flunky, to one who whistles for him as for a dog trained to obey, who comes on the said day and not on any other day. He is a man who comes when authority says: ‘The moment is here to sanction one more time a system established by others and for others than yourself. The moment is here to put aside one more time the idea of revolt against the organization that exploits you and to obey its authority. The moment is here to vote, that is to say, to make an act which signifies: I RECOGNIZE YOUR LAWS.'”

The individual, who gave as his name Paraf Javal, was thought to be an immigrant and unemployed. Immigration authorities were investigating the possibility of deportation proceedings. After the brief incident, the computer announced,

“Gentlemen, the Show is over; let the Show go on.” And it goes on and on and on.