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Beware Of Pleasure Island


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The time in which we live will shape how stories are told.

Generally speaking, throughout the ages, myths and the narrative of the times were carefully crafted to match the power structure.

Up until very recently, leaders of nations were synonymous with gods.

They either were gods, or they had a direct line to god.

And if the ruled long enough, the myths slowly morphed to match this god-man personality.

Even as recently as WWII Japan, they thought the emperor was an actual deity.

So when he made the surrender announcement on the radio, it shocked the nation.

Sometimes, there are rebels.

Storytellers who make up tales to go against the powers that be.

These guys got to be careful.

Socrates himself was put to death for spreading the wrong ideas.

Ideas that threatened to turn the youth of the time against the government structure.

And because he is a famous case of being killed for teaching the wrong ideas, people learned from his mistake.

Ever since then, people have been careful.

It's generally pretty safe to put the "anti-government" message into stories and metaphors.

It allows the storyteller to have plausible deniability.

"Dude! What are you talking about! It's not an anti-government story, it's about a bunch of rabbits!"

A very common theme in these "anti-government" stories are to be careful when something is offered freely.

Because economics tells us there are ALWAYS hidden costs.

This was the idea behind Pinocchio and his pals when they got suckered into going to pleasure island.

This is also the part about the story most people aren't familiar with.

As it goes, this guy was riding around town in a big wagon, being pulled by a bunch of mules.

Advertising this place called "Pleasure Island." 

A place where everything was free.

So all the kids jumped on the wagon.

And had fun at pleasure island.

Only it was a trap.

They actually turned into mules.

Tricked into being work animals.

Whose purpose was to bring more freebie seekers to pleasure island.

Nature knows this trick well.

It's the business strategy of the Venus Flytrap.

The poor fly sees this wonderful smelling buffet.

All you can eat.

But as General Ackbar is fond of saying, "It's a trap!"

All humans come with unlimited desires.

And unlimited creativity.

The idea is that we combine these unlimited desires, and this unlimited creativity, and figure out how best get our desires satisfied.

Hopefully, this ends up with cool inventions and ideas.

Which leads to more cool inventions and ideas.

Unless somebody has promised us all free stuff.

Free stuff that requires little work or effort.

And kills our creativity and motivation.

Now, why would they want to do that?

Who benefits from killing our motivation and creativity?

What's their angle?

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