Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Part 32, Chapter 7 - No Hard Feelings About the Genocide

Soth apologizes for not being able to personally build a teleporter for Jonnie, but is told that his help will bring prosperity to countless worlds. Soth finds the notion not just nice, but "very nice," and offers Jonnie a computer he's set up to solve Psychlo equations, and even has ideas of how to convert the Psychlo base eleven system (which they held onto because it was annoying to work with) to the sacred simplicity of the decimal system.

For all this Jonnie writes up huge checks for Soth, making the old Psychlo muse about how he'd have a dozen wives and start a noble dynasty, but of course that's impossible now. When Jonnie wonders at this, Soth explains that the catrists "long ago pulled back the only Psychlo colonies that had begun. They convinced the throne that colonies on other planets might mutate, might be able to live in other atmospheres, and constitute a threat to the crown."

I am at a total loss as to how having a branch of your species develop the ability to breathe a different atmosphere threatens your power structure. Then again, these are the Psychlos we're talking about...

Anyway, those dastardly catrists wanted all Psychlos to be born on their homeworld, where they could have those capsules implanted in their skulls. So all females sent to work on other worlds had to be sterilized. The Psychlo race will die out after this generation. Jonnie's sorta-accidental act of genocide is complete.

And yet Soth isn't angry at Jonnie for killing billions of his people and dooming his entire race to extinction, because "From the moment the catrists began to gain power, the race started to go bad." He says the catrists were the ones who destroyed the Psychlo empire, not Jonnie, and the civilization was doomed the minute they took over.

After this, Soth sighs at the heap of contracts and paperwork on his desk and tells Jonnie that it's been a privilege to work with him. End chapter.

What. The. Hell.

No wishful thinking about what the Psychlos could have been without those moronic catrists implanting pointless and defective mind-control devices. No regrets that more Psychlos weren't brought up like Ker. No tears shed over the deaths of friends and loved ones caught up as part of an oppressive empire, or women and innocent children murdered for the sins of others. Not even the barest flicker of hostility towards the man who wiped out your entire species. Instead Soth absolves Jonnie of any sense of guilt (not that he was feeling any) and carries on.

God forbid our handsome hero feel bad about destroying a planet and killing millions.

The scariest thing about Soth's speech has nothing to do with Battlefield Earth, but Hubbard's views on psychology. So if any civilization, any people are tainted by the catrists/psychiatrists' immoral teachings, it's okay to kill them? Like you're doing them a favor for ridding the world of such a hated scourge? They're acceptable collateral damage for the war against oppressive charlatan physicians? The destruction of those ideas is worth the price in lives?

This is twelve kinds of effed-up.

Back to Part Thirty-Two, Chapter Six

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