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Friday, April 01, 2005

Dystopia of the Day

So Sandy Berger got a 10,000$US fine for stealing important documents and burning them or something. The news reports are a little vague on that part. Since the maximum fine is 100,000$US, or about 9 kilos, plus a year in prison, the punishment works out to about 5 to 10% of the maximum.

Historical documents ought to be worth 15%, at least. I'm just happy that he didn't get away with the 1984esque escapade, and was instead thwarted by the Library Police.

Yes, the Library Police, also known as Treasury division 6. When someone uses a white house machine to fax their butt to Moscow, the Library Police investigate. When someone puts the original rough draft of the Declaration of Independence on the wrong shelf, the Library Police find them- and make them pay.

The Library Police are above the law. The Library Police are everywhere. The Library Police ar coming for you.

Do you think they don't know about that time you sneezed in Soldier's Pay and just turned the page? Do you think that the copy of McNally's Luck you kept when you moved is unaccounted for?

Oh, no. They know. And right now they have bigger fish to fry, but one day- one day soon- the Library Police are coming for you.

Let us examine the case of Danny Briskow from Long Island. He inadvertently kept the reserve copy of A Princess of Mars for an extra week. One week turned into two, and soon the 1912 copy of Burroughs' classic was lost forever in Briskow's attic. But the story doesn't end there.

After nearly three years of sending out late notices, the local library staff made the decision to call Treasury, divison 6. The call was made at 7:03 PM on a Tuesday, just after closing time.

By 8:14 PM, the Library Police special operations team was en route to Long Island.

Around 10:30, local residents heard a disturbance. Said Angie Crawford, a neighbor, "I was just about to watch the Late Show when I heard what souned like two cats, you know. So I looked outside for my Essie, and that's when I saw them kicking in Danny's door."

Danny Briskow lost not only a night's sleep, but his home, his job, and his wife. "I can't believe that I lived with... a book-thief for three years!" said Lisa Briskow, his wife.

To comply with a court order, Danny Briskow isn't allowed within 100 feet of a book until well into the next decade. He is currently serving a 14 year sentence in a federal facility.

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