Rosella Tolfree's World
A series set in a politically dark and dystopian future of the U.S.A.
Featuring blogs that explains Rosella's World
Rosella Tolfree's World is a fictional world.
An Early Disease in Rosella Tolfree’s World
A New COVID
It's Just The Sniffles
The Sniffles That's Stopping Work
After the COVID-19 pandemic, human society embarked on efforts to deal with potential zoonotic viral sources. Out of panic, a few governments resorted to burning whole forests to wipe out potential zoonotic sources. This didn’t change the equation of how the viruses worked, and it created new niches. Niches that would cause economic disruptions in human society.
From Mice to Rabbits to Humans
One such niche was the migration of mice from a burn near the port city of Matadi in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. From there they ended up in France via cargo containers. The mice were infected with a weakened strain of SDAV. It did nothing to the mice, but once it got to Europe, it infected meat producing cuniculture farms near the Port of Marseille. The dead rabbits were tested, and they found the meat to be safe for human consumption. During the following month after the mean went to market, a strange seasonal allergy surfaced around the region of Marseille. Its symptoms were like most seasonal allergies, with runny eyes and nose, with an occasional sneezing and cough. Except traditional antihistamines were not working. It wasn’t until this “seasonal allergy” began to spread to other parts of France, and both infants and elderly were dying from it did medical experts realize they were dealing with a new epidemic.
It wasn’t long before the scientists had identified the virus as a mutated version of Sialodacryoadenitis virus (SDAV), a Murine coronavirus (M-CoV). The new disease was given the designation of H-SDAV, and they developed a new mRNA vaccine to combat it. This new mRNA included coding for the M, N, and S proteins allowing for a maximum human immune response. The problem was initial dose testing showed that having all three proteins caused recipients to experience a severe adverse response. It was determined the most effective regiment was to spread four shots over a six-month period.
By the time vaccine production was ramping up, the virus had already spread throughout Europe and had made it to the United States. Governments were in acting various infection spread controls such as regional quarantines, shopping restrictions, school closures, and travel restrictions. Major businesses reported large numbers of sick employees which caused the European and U.S. stock markets to drop by 27% in a month long sell off. An economic depression was settling in Europe and the United States despite central bank and legislative efforts to prop up the economies. Too many people were becoming sick to do work with the infants, immunocompromised, and elderly taking the brunt of the deaths.
The Effects of Social Media
During this time, a considerable number of cure-alls and remedies were circulating on the precursor to the Social Media Net. One of the biggest social media influencers was Dr. Ida Kofol. She had published a few scientific studies that supported her claims with funding from the Contemporary Patriot Coalition (CPC). Majority of her medical claims concerning H-SDAV were that if one made improvements to their lymphatic system flow, this disease wouldn’t be so severe or long lasting. She advocated drinking plenty of water to flush the lymph system; taking garlic, turmeric, and citrus pills; and doing a lymphatic cleanse by eating asparagus for an entire week. She also featured videos showing various exercises and personal ways to clear your lymphatic system. Not to mention a lymphatic drainage detox suit that could be purchased from her online store for a discounted amount of $350 USD.
Her claims were challenged by various scientific and mainstream sources, and yet her ideas kept circulating at a high volume around social media sites. This was despite attempts by the social media operators trying to curb the flow of the information by removing fake sites and flagging the shares.
The Post Pandemic Changes
After the pandemic, the FTC enacted regulatory changes concerning health and fitness claims as it related to “Truth in Advertising.” These changes narrowed what was scientific evidence to non-competing interest; peer-reviewed journals and/or publications of high standards; and not to include industrial or special interest sponsors. They attached all claims to include recirculated social media posts amplifying the original claim either organically or through an influencer platform. These changes sent shock waves through much of the social media community that depended on either scientific backed claims, and/or the recirculation of posts.
Then the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program requested help from the FTC concerning a review of cases involving the mRNA vaccines. The cases dealt with occurrences of hepatitis, enteritis, and encephalitis. The claim that the vaccines caused hepatitis had been ruled as fake by the CDC. These claims were based on rat studies years earlier. The encephalitis cases were never linked to the vaccines but were found to be issues associated with the births themselves. Only the enteritis was considered a valid problem with one of the mRNA vaccines. It wasn’t certain if one compound in the vaccine or the LNP was reducing the effects of medications for Chron’s disease. As a precaution, those with Chron’s disease were advised to receive one of the other vaccines.
All these claims in the injury compensation program had one commonality, all the victims were supporters or customers of Dr. Ida Kofol. While Dr. Kofol never advocated to people not to get the vaccine, she wanted to inform people of alternatives and possible unspoken risks. The FTC reviewed all of Dr. Kofol’s online material and noticed that under the current regulations she would be in violation. The problem was, under the old rules, she wasn’t in violation during the pandemic itself, but only the current activity. The FTC then reviewed other similar sites and social media active during the pandemic and found similar claims to that of Dr. Kofol. Under the direction of the White House, the Chair of the FTC pushed legal action against the operators and influencers of these sites.
All these lawsuits would end up in the U.S. Supreme Court as a free speech case versus the commerce clause. The court would rule in favor of the commerce clause citing “that free speech doesn’t include the promotion of false claims for nefarious purposes” but added that “it’s up to commissions and government entities, such as the FTC, to prove to the courts both that the claims are false and nefarious.”
It was at this point in the United States that the supplement, diet and “alternative medicine” market collapsed. An approximate 75-billion-dollar industry was replaced with the established medical and pharmaceutical complex. The only alternative medicine groups to survive were those that had state licensing boards, like those for Traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, and massage therapy.
While not part of the lawsuits, physical trainers and exercise experts pulled their videos for fear of being the next target. How we dieted and exercised changed in the post-human-SDAV pandemic economy. People had to use certified dietitians, clinics or medical professionals for supplements and diet issues. While you could still do exercise on your own, more people used monitored gyms and/or signed up for classes since there was a lack of videos.
Some saw this as a major social improvement since now the quackery and misinformation was gone, but it had a chilling effect on medical science by reinforcing entrenched biases.
Elon Musk Jokes About Dogecoin on SNL
Cryptocurrencies Fall Apart
The U.S. Develops a Digital USD
Central Bank Digital Currencies Help Power an A.I. Arms Race
On SNL, Elon Musk joked that Dogecoin was a hustle. This was followed a couple days later, as reported on Bloomberg, that Mr. Musk tweeted Tesla would no longer accept the cryptocurrency Bitcoin as payment for his cars. He cited green energy issues. This sent the prices of Bitcoin tumbling.
Following all this, the Economist had a piece on the idea of central banks issuing digital money and if banks could survive. The piece noted that in October 2020 the central bank of the Bahamas became the first group to issue a digital currency. China has since followed with the e-yuan. Other central banks are now looking into the idea.
The U.S. Federal Reserve has had a dual mandate [price stability (i.e., the rate of inflation) and maximum sustainable employment] for a long time. They do this through the control of monetary flows through the various areas of the economy. This is not the same throughout the world with other central banks. But could this change with digital currencies? Digital currencies allow for greater control features not part of the current fiat money supply.
So, What Happened?
As the First Age of Humanity continued to unfold, cryptocurrencies kept having issues. There were problems with the mining aspects from how block chains worked. An ever-increasing number of anti-trust lawsuits were launched by miners against other miners, to increasing social concerns over power and resource consumption. There was also the ever-increasing pressure by the SEC against various U.S. entities launching cryptocurrencies in violation of trade and security acts. Then came a big Federal crackdown effort on cybercriminal activity involving not only general hacking, but also the use of cryptocurrencies for money laundering and other criminal activities. Arrests of crypto crimes were becoming news click bait as people became increasingly reluctant to use the digital currencies for trade. Then Wall Street became unwilling to deal with the space until the government developed greater oversight. This is when the ride stopped with the current known cryptocurrencies as the market collapsed.
It was at this point the U.S. federal government reasserted its authority under Section 31 U.S.C. 5103 and Title 18, Section 471 to issue any currency for trade, debt, and any obligation by creating its own digital version of the US dollar. It then relegated the remaining cryptocurrencies to a variant of tradable security like stocks, bonds, and futures. These moves reassured Wall Street allowing the reopening of trading in the cryptocurrency space, but in doing so subjected the transfers to greater scrutiny. Such as removing off book transactions, the public announcement of certain transactions by insiders, and subjecting domestic cryptocurrency exchanges to the same rules as all other security exchanges.
The Digital USD Technology
The adoption of a digital USD, or d-USD, caused a consolidation of the US banking industry. Left were shadow bankers, investment bankers, credit unions, and saving & loans associations. Gone were retail bankers, commercial bankers, and cooperative bankers. The accounts from lost banks were redistributed and merged into either the remaining bankers or under the new division of the Federal Reserve handling the d-USD working with the Treasury Department, the Commerce Department and Small Business Administration.
The US Treasury continued to print coin denominations but discontinued the printing of paper bills. Except now all coins had Nano-chips imbedded in them, making them digital and traceable.
By Rosella’s time, d-USD transactions were tracked through an A.I. reinforced Byzantine consensus mechanism instead of older block chain technology. People kept all their d-USD transactions online in a “g-wallet” maintained by the Federal Reserve. The “g” isn’t for government but is for gene. This is because it granted access through a gene scan from a person’s finger. Some people employed a second layer of security using a “key chip”. Key chips could be imbedded in the hand or kept in something physical, like a card. They used a special form of algorithmic encryption that required both parties to know the formula. Each key chip formula is unique and registered with the g-wallet that there is one.
A g-wallet ties in all aspects of the finances of a person into one digital location allowing individuals to get loans, buy stocks, or conduct any wide range of financial transactions. The downside was the government now monitors all transactions.
Cord Cutters & Criminals
There are hold outs who’ve cut the cord from digital money. This is common for poorer or remote areas of the United States. It’s also found in the communities of Seattle, Washington, Portland, Oregon, and parts of San Francisco, California. These areas have returned to basic bartering or use of any precious commodity, like jewels or gold for trade.
Many criminals have also moved to physical gold and silver for transactions finding it has a lower digital footprint. More clever criminals have multiple fake g-wallets using 3-D printed DNA fingers to do money laundering. These criminals act as the go between for transacting gold and silver for goods and weapons then passing the metals on to other people for d-USD. Allowing them to purchase more supplies for gangs.
Local, State and Federal law enforcement are constantly investigating links between the cord cutting communities and the criminal networks. In Seattle and Portland there are street protests, even in Rosella’s time, by those who support the people’s right to barter and not deal in the new digital currencies.
The Rest of the World
As for the rest of the world, by Rosella’s time you see other central banks with digital currencies and government monitored digital wallets. Some places removed all their banks while others kept private banking systems in place. With the digitization of currency came a precise control over the economy by nation states that rivaled all previous control measures. For the first time nation states could stop certain sales of products because of illegal activity or safety issues with the push of a button. But it also made central banks an increasing target for cyberwarfare and espionage creating a security tech race among the nations. This alone helped to power the increasing development of more powerful A.I. systems for both defense and attack.
Death Equals Meat
Only The Emotional Bury The Dead
Rumors Say The Rich Are Eating Corpse Meat
On March 29, 2021, Gallup reported that church membership in 2020 fell below 50% for U.S. adults.
By the Second Age of Humanity, this decline continued until it hovered around 15 to 20%. This was despite years of attempts to lure generations back into the pews.
With the changes in the 501(c)3 laws allowing religions to actively participate in the political process in the U.S., we see the decline in religious membership stabilize to it's 15 to 20% level.
The View on Death
Those following religious beliefs were given a sense of immortality rooted in an afterlife. Usually, the religion or belief attached the outcome of this afterlife to a set of morals.
For Rosella, she professes no religious belief. She sees the universe, like many, in the light of the standard scientific model of the time, and socially accepted ethics.
In Rosella’s line of work, she’s seen death. Her world view gives her a concept of death that when you die nothing happens except the body decays as a piece of meat.
Burial of the Dead
Each religious community had its own form of burial ritual common to their faith. This even includes those faith groups who see the androids as living, with some burying the “dead” androids in coffins in cemeteries. It would not be uncommon for Pattyroller agents, working for the leasing groups, to be seen late at night digging up these “dead” androids to recover the leased property.
Rosella loved her father so much that she wanted to give him a burial. She wasn’t able due circumstances of her being in the Ranger Marshals, and the speed at which the medical examiner processed her father’s body. This desire for a burial happens with individuals who are strongly attached to their loved ones.
Even with cemeteries present, there are many who don’t even bother and walk away from their loved ones. Leaving them for the state to dispose of their body. This may seem incomprehensible, but a cultural belief of the dead body has no meaning and is no longer your loved one has become a norm. The view held is your loved one is only your loved one while alive. But if dead, they are no longer who they were. They’ve become meat.
This view of death being nothing more than bodies becoming decaying meat has resulted in people pursuing ways to avoid this end. This has translated into pushing genetics into causing humans to living longer, curing diseases, or building technologies to avoid certain environmental issues.
In the parts of society where death is more of a daily reality, these people still hold the general view that death results in a person is only a piece of meat. As mentioned with Rosella, if a person has an emotional attachment to the individual, only then will they try to seek a burial ritual.
Cannibalism of the Dead
Since the Great Melt and losing large meat animal husbandry, fresh meat supplies have dwindled. On outlier Social Media Net shows there are stories that the rich have used fresh corpses as sources of meat. These stories are nothing more than unsubstantiated rumors and hearsay. The reality is closer to the fact the rich can afford 3-D printed steaks, and other similar cuts of meat. From sources grown in orbital stations dedicated to supplying food to Mars.
Note To The Readers- The term Pattyroller is not to glorify this job. Or make it akin to Decker in PKD’s “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep“. And my use of it is not equal to that of the horrible brutalities inflicted upon those who these “bounty hunters” retrieved in the past (see below). It is to bring to light a historical word in a similar context to allow the reader to explore the true meaning. Androids are nothing more than property in Rosella’s world. Property that has emotions and can think, but is not alive by human standards. Androids are not even a close analog to a human slave, except in the sense of being property. Like a car or a house. Androids are the essence of how people saw those known as slaves. Not fully human, despite whatever legal document said of them. Something to ponder as we move forward technologically.
Pattyrollers- In the early days of android leasing, there were no Pattyrollers. Only your standard repo-men working for leasing agents. It wasn’t until androids had Emo-Ware installed did the Pattyroller come into existence. The problem was androids with Emo-Ware had a tendency to walk away from their work. The phrase Pattyroller resurfaced in the American lexicon during the Second Age of Humanity because of the level of cruelty these men used (and they were mostly men, typically unfit for mining on Mars). The word’s origin comes from a black slave descendent term used for the slave patrols, groups of licensed men who brutally hunted down escaped slaves. The name stuck despite its original meaning and became incorporated in many legal documents. Many states granting these men a host of rights, such as the ability to kill any person standing in their way to recover a bounty. Socially, many considered Pattyrollers scum and maladjusted.
To Surrender Personal Privacy
For The Wonders Of Technology
To some in the early 21st Century, China is one of the most monitored and connected societies. As an example, during the COVID-19 pandemic they had developed phone apps as passes to gate people into certain areas depending on COVID-19 status.
Some have suggested that when POTUS45 was removed from social media, that Big Tech was flexing its muscles that even the U.S. could become tech controlled like China.
Development of Smart Cities
It would be during the late First Age of Humanity that governments developed Smart Cities. By this point the Big Tech giants had long been broken up, but this didn’t stop the CEOs from cooperating together. It was during this time that Jon Greene’s family would make its fortunes in the wiring of road sensors and other infrastructure for smart car technology. His family corporation became the global leader in retrofitting entire cities and nations to smart roads for the new car technology. This period would become another Gilded Age.
But not all people were content with the developments of these Smart Cities. In the U.S., these protestors tried political unrest and to vote out politicians, but these tactics failed. These disgruntled city folks didn’t like how the courts were allowing the intrusion of data stealing corporations into their lives. In frustration, many fled the developing Smart Cities to the wild parts of America. To live like pioneers once more. Many of these would be wilderness settlers perished because of inadequate understanding of how to live off the land.
By the time of the Second Age of Humanity, the idea of Smart Cities with a woven web of interconnected infrastructure, like how human nerves run throughout the body, became a reality. Various computerized systems from dumb A.I. systems too more sophisticated A.I. systems were used to control everything. It kept the interconnected parts of the human world efficiently working, even with the ecological disasters going about it. So necessary was this infrastructure in the U.S. that even basic Wi-Fi couldn’t be turned off by the government because of a U.S. Supreme Court case granting Constitutional Net Privilege Rights. Only under extreme cases of acts of terrorism were exceptions allowed.
The Difference and The Price
The big difference of Rosella’s World is humanity is not fully wired into this electronic network. The development of cybernetics to the point of full integration of the human mind into cyberspace ceased with the LA Cyber Riots. The LA Cyber Riots represented the tipping point where people realized that if things continued, a new super race was about to become a reality. Globally humanity turned its back against the idea of human-machine integration after that point. Humanity felt more comfortable with the control it had over artificial intelligence controlling parts of its world than wanting full integration.
All this integration came with a price. One’s privacy is surrendered to get a constant flow of data. For example, Rosella’s apartment toilet is an integrated smart toilet which monitors her health from her use. Many public and private toilets are this way by her time. They considered this a major medical advancement. Now real-time data could be fed into A.I. medical systems to alert a human doctor of any problem or medication change. Other real time health devices are available for individuals from implants, to integrated home systems, and to walk-up kiosks. Thanks to U.S. social changes in health care, integrating health data collection in a person’s everyday life was increased by Rosella’s time. No one felt their privacy was compromised because they were getting so many technological benefits in exchange.
The exception were the Great Melt refugees put into ‘the stacks.’ They were cut off from any benefit but had to surrender their privacy for the wellbeing of society. Many were American citizens. Kept in camps made from cargo containers while the US government figured out what to do. By the time of many of the Rosella Tolfree stories, a second generation has already been born in the camps.
YouTube Talks In Part About Smart Cities Problems
Cyclical Oppressors and Perceived Utopias
While America continued to adopt various socialist-like programs, it never fully became an absolutely communist utopia. Americans still prized individuality over the collective, and politicians were unwilling to uproot the U.S. Constitution based on identity politics. Politicians would amend the Constitution from time to time, but not fully change it into a new government. The current system served the parties well.
Set against the backdrop of increasing radical pressure to hold another Constitutional Convention, mainstream parties had to deal with these elements every election cycle. Despite having organized political parties initially, the American Marxist groups were by the mid-20th century a loose collection of identity politics, and intersectional theorists that used social media as a decentralized communication tool. They are more known for their leftist publications, which continue to operate even in the digital age.
By the Second Age of Humanity these groups were operating their own channels and shows pumping out their messages 24-7 to anyone willing to listen. In the Second Age, they still operated in a decentralized manner with no clear leadership. This made it difficult for local, state, and federal authorities to broker deals or even charge the leaders with racketeering or conspiracy.
Around the end of the First Age to start of the Second Age, Maeva Paquin, a French Neo-Post-Modernist, came up with a new Marxist theory. She called it, “Oppresseurs Cycliques” or Cyclical Oppressors. Looking back through history, she noted how Lenin and other communists became oppressors in their society. This furthered the need for deconstruction and reanalysis of the intersections of the oppressed. Requiring the oppressed to revolt against these oppressors. If successful they would then become the oppressors themselves. Starting the cycle all over again.
Or as she called this cyclical reality, “utopie réalisée”, or perceived utopia. In that, each cycle would create a perceived utopia that would fall into a dystopian reality because of the creation of oppressive leadership.
Paquin noted the same was occurring with the African American subculture. As the new affirmative action amendment took effect in the U.S., the Race-Conflict approach was fading rapidly away now that a successful win had occurred. And African American personal perceptions were changing about well-being. The old victim arguments were no longer working because the people no longer saw themselves as a victim based on any historical legacy or natural racial category. Many saw the amendment as the final and end all corrective action needed socially because of the political messaging to get it passed and ratified. Opposition shut down attempts to say otherwise on social media or the news. While individual African Americans were not becoming “oppressive overlords” in American society, they were becoming like their historical white counterparts in larger numbers. More African Americans were being lifted out of poverty and out of the prison systems. Being moved into the higher income brackets. With all the social perks that come with those brackets. A perceived utopia.
But Paquin saw that in doing so it came at a dystopian cost for some. The uneven realities of the amendment created widening disparities between African Americans and the other races and ethnicities. Thus, the amendment was creating groups of oppressed people by her thinking. Repeating the original cycle of the past. Making the amendment a source of cyclical oppression.
By the early Second Age, with advance CRISPR, full genetic manipulation and fixing of human genomes became a reality. Paquin noted that people were skewing the concepts of race, gender, and sexual identity on a genetic level. They were removing some and mixing others. This made identity politics of any kind going forward increasingly difficult to argue. She predicted if the trend continued that a new oppressed group would need to be found if there was to be any hope for the movement.
The main counters to Paquin’s arguments was the lacking resolution to the cycle and getting what her critics called “absolute utopia”. A state of perfect and unchanging utopian existence. She would reject the absolute utopian theory as an impossible reality because of human nature. Other critics told her views on what oppression was and what it was not were skewed. She would dismiss this out of hand.
Paquin was correct in that by Rosella’s time all the labels of sexuality had faded away in society. People did whatever with whomever (there were still social norms and laws dealing with children and consent). The public celebration of unique sexual identities was no longer a norm. And as for race, people had blended in so much melanin genes to deal with the increase in ultraviolet radiation from global warming that many people looked similar in color. People became “color blind”. With the affirmative action amendment firmly in the past, nearly everyone excepted things as historically resolved.
The New Conflict Groups
It was during the development of the A-3 androids that Marxists groups in France latched onto a new under privileged group. They called themselves, “Société de la liberté robotique”. A French organization known by the initials SLR. Or in English, the Robotic Freedom Society. This group pushed for marriage rights, property rights, voting rights, wage earning rights, etc. for autonomous A.I. sentience. They see humans as oppressors. And these machines as the true humans. Many of the followers’ desire to become machines themselves. These followers see androids as slaves in the same context as historical human slavery. The counter arguments were that androids are machines. Programmed tools for humanity’s service. There’s no comparison to human slavery. Humans have dignity and a soul. Machines don’t.
Government anti-terrorist organizations saw the SLR as a bona fide threat. They believed that the SLR could reprogram A-3 and A-4 androids to become malicious against humans. They also believed that the group was responsible for the illegal trafficking of illicit cybernetic technologies.
The only other social group that was attempted to be organized in the United States were those who were displaced by the floods and New Madrid Traps. This included the native born and immigrants herded into the camps known as the Stacks. The Stacks were shipping containers turned into makeshift housing for the displaced by the federal government. But attempts to organize these people constantly broke down due to the level of support and oppression they suffered. While in the Stacks, the federal government ensured that they met their basic needs. Some could leave the Stacks to get employment in the surrounding communities. Overall, these people had become so discouraged with their position in society they lacked the will to fight back. They had become content with their bleak outcome.
Other Posts of Interest
Human Sexuality, Sex, and Genderism in Rosella’s Dystopian World
Important Legal Changes in the Dystopian U.S. of Rosella’s World
Important Legal Changes in the Dystopian U.S. of Rosella's World- Part 2
Image-"Workers of the world unite". By Hennie Stander, Source Unsplash, Unsplash License (Processed with Adobe Splash)
Seth Underwood writes adult science fiction and political dystopian science fiction. His future political dystopian U.S. world features decades of despot presidents, a flooded world, and new para-military force known as the Ranger Marshals. He has freemium stories at www. sethunderwoodstories.com