Sunday July 13, 2008
Book 10: The Longshoreman of the Apocalypse — Part II: Enter the Longshoreman


Narrator: Aboard the Touch-And-Go. . .
Ennesby: So, Captain Tagon. . . what qualifies you and your tiny company to oversee distribution of food to twenty-eight million people?
Captain Tagon: What qualifies me?
Captain Tagon: I'm being paid to do the job, so I'll get it done.

And I don't see how "twenty-eight million" people change that. Are we outnumbered? Fine. That's what force-multiplication is for.

Ennesby: "Force multiplication?" Is that like "math under duress?"
Captain Tagon: Math what? Are you playing a stupid person?
Captain Tagon: Force multipliers are things like a soldier's weapons, or a good supply line. You know, the stuff that lets one soldier take on three, ten, or even ten thousand times his number in lesser-equipped enemies.
Captain Tagon: There may be twenty-eight million people here, but we're the ones with the power armor, the tanks, and the warship.
Ennesby: Okay. . . I'm glad we had this little rehearsal. There's no need to bother with more practice questions.
Captain Tagon: Oh, good.
Ennesby: Because no amount of mere practice is going to keep you from saying something that embroils us in a civil war.
Captain Tagon: Civil war would be better than all this talking.
Ennesby: Oh, yes. Save that gem of a sound bite for the interview. You'll be famous.