So, Barb Taub has this new book out on April 7th. Before we get to the stuff in the title that made you click on the tweet (and it's worth waiting for!), I need to tell you about the next part of Barb's urban fantasy series ~ I've read one of them, Don't Touch (my review is HERE) and it was one of the funniest books I'd read in ages. I mean, funny. Anyone who's read her blog will know what I mean... oh, and if you want to read the piece she did for my last year's astrology series, it's HERE . Many declared it the most entertaining (and it was certainly one of the most viewed) of the feature's 50-odd posts :)
Barb's NULL CITY series starts with One Way Fare which you can find HERE on Amazon UK or HERE on Amazon.com (more reviews!). Round Trip Fare is available for pre-order on Amazon UK and Amazon.com
That's all the linky stuff ~ now sit back and let Barb tell you....
Why everything is a mess
She repeated the word “little” several times, occasionally embellishing it with “small” and even (because I live in Scotland now) “wee”. Nope, she hasn’t forgotten.
But sadly, I wasn’t really paying attention just at that point because I was listening to a radio call in show from America and the theme was “What would you ask a presidential candidate?”
At first, there were the usual things any responsible voter would want to know about their candidate:
Actually, I know this one. Everything is a mess because of three things. (Four, if Donald Trump is elected and the entire Democratic Party plus most of Texas moves to Canada before Canada builds The Wall.)
Thing one. Everything is a mess because of history.
“If all the economists were laid end to end, they'd never reach a conclusion.” —George Bernard Shaw
Before we had history, things were great. The universe big banged and we got our stars and planetary formations.
This was the Dawn of Time.
Life evolved out of the primordial soup and went looking for the primordial oyster cracker. Eons passed without a single recession. Oh sure, at primordial cocktail parties there were always those kvetching about the good old days when they had gills, and what the newer organisms were evolving into. But nobody ever mentioned inflation, mortgage rates, or health care costs."
This was the Dawn of History.
This was the Dawn of Economics.
They ran to the next cave where the hunters had just dragged in a fresh mastodon. “Listen to this,” yelled the cave-economists, launching into a detailed economic forecast. When the cave-neighbors looked down again, half of their mastodon was gone. “The invisible hand took it,” explained Milton.
Soon the invisible hand was grabbing part of the daily hunt everywhere Milton’s group went. Cave-neighbors began to trade each other their extra mastodons so they would always have some for the invisible hand.
This was the Dawn of Markets.
But the cave-neighbors began to be terrified of the cave-economists. They hid from them, especially at dinner time.
This was the Dawn of Civilization.
Thing two. Everything is a mess because of the economy, Stupid.
“Ask five economists and you'll get five different answers - six if one went to Harvard.” —Edgar Fiedler
The mastodons became extinct, but the economists became PhDs. They split into rival sects that roamed the land, terrorizing cave dwellers by demanding government grants and sabbaticals in exchange for their mystical formulae and incantations for controlling the invisible hand.
Eventually, the roving bands of marauding economists were rounded up and put into tall ivory towers, where they passed down their craft from generation to generation, isolated from infecting the general population except during election years.
This was the Dawn of Higher Education.
Thing three. Everything is a mess because of the government.
“Give me a one-handed economist! All my economics say, ''On the one hand? on the other.'' —Harry S. Truman
The Government tried to use some of the economists’ spells. But instead of getting the invisible hand to cooperate, each new spell only seemed to make the Government grow bigger. Every election year, the Government would complain that it needed to go on a diet. Then after the election, it would take a nap and just end up letting the seams out on the budget again.
I hope that answers the caller’s original question. (You’re not going to eat the rest of that mastodon, are you? What mastodon? Damn invisible hand…)
Oh, and about my new book. It’s really great. You should read it. (And don’t worry—if Trump is elected, a translation will be available in Canada. You betcha, eh!)"
Extract from Round Trip Fare:
Four more rights took her in a circle around her block before a quick turn into her garage. Most of the other Craftsman cottages in her neighborhood near the University of Washington—affectionately known to locals as U-Dub—had carports. But if the walk-in closets and remodeled baths had sold Marley, the garage had been her selling point. She thumbed the finger scanner on the garage door opener, and the door rolled open as she pulled into the driveway. As the steel-reinforced automatic door closed behind her, she stepped over to a wall-mounted cabinet that had started life in the kitchen. The scuffed avocado doors hid state of the art monitors showing video feeds covering all angles around the property.
Pushing a button, she stepped back as it unfolded and inflated itself to form a full-sized bed that took up most of the available floor space. “I just never get tired of seeing that one.” She gave the bed an admiring pat before covering it with several disposable surgical pads.