Captains All

The Host stood at the entrance and surveyed his guests with a mixture of amusement and satisfaction.

Aside from their gender, the men seated around the long cherrywood table had certain things in common.

Each was one of the wealthiest and most powerful individuals in the world, and each was an American.

They might well have been in any business meeting, save for the grotesque mask each of them wore.

These had been chosen especially by the Host to give a subtle clue to the wearer’s identity while revealing nothing precise.

The head of the world’s largest oil company, a man of Saudi descent, wore the mask of a multi-eyed insect.

The young  social media titan was a curved-beak vulture, and so on.

“You will pardon the secrecy, gentlemen,” said the Host.  “It is for your own protection, and mine. What we discuss here will affect the future of all humanity, and in fact will likely  determine whom humanity itself will consist of.”


What Pegman Saw: Delaware

Note: Over a million businesses—more than 50 percent of publicly traded companies in the U.S. and more than 60 percent of Fortune 500 companies—are incorporated in Delaware.  Among the reasons for this are the “Delaware loophole” which allows companies to declare certain types of revenue in Delaware rather than in the state where the business actually occurred, and the fact that Delaware also doesn’t tax profits on royalty payments, trademarks, or copyrights. The Obama administration sought to pass laws to hold these corporations accountable for fair tax liability, but efforts were successfully staved off by the Republican-controlled House and Senate. It comes  as no surpise that the Trump administration has reversed and eliminated all such provisions.


Add Yours
  1. Lynn Love

    A sinister cabal of powerful men, Josh. Funny, isn’t it, how the tax men love to hound the ordinary citizen if he or she owes anything but government is more than happy to turn a blind eye to millions owed by multi nationals? We have the same here. Creepy, well described – feels like it could be the opener for a very smart corporate thriller

    • J Hardy Carroll

      Thanks Lynn. I was thinking about Stanley Kubrick last movie Eyes Wide Shut for the masks. You know this shit goes on all the time. The way things are now is the result of many years of serious planning, not by accident. Thanks for your comment

  2. pennygadd51

    Dear Josh
    While some people might dismiss this as conspiracy theory, I believe you’re actually right. Technological advance has consolidated the hold on power of the global elite. It will shortly be possible to live beyond 120. You can bet that won’t be you and me! A well-told tale.

  3. Iain Kelly

    There always seem to be loopholes if you have enough money to find them, so the rich keep getting richer and the poorest keep having to pay tax. I can’t help but picture Trump as the Host in your story. Very sinister and at the same time completely believable.

  4. Joy Pixley

    Sounds just about right: a bunch of wealthy men acting out nefarious plans that will screw over the rest of us, while somehow evading any blame. I wish that sounded more like a ridiculous conspiracy theory in some silly thriller movie,and less like real life!

  5. Na'ama Yehuda

    The fact that there are those who would abuse loopholes is sad enough. The fact that those who are tasked with passing laws for the betterment of the Republic yet insist on refusing to close loop holes that benefit only the few and increase corruption, is what’s truly a tragedy.

Don't just stand there.