Wednesday, March 17, 2021

"Death Was News-copy"

By Richard Wilson (1920-87).
Illustration by C. A. Murphy (1896-1984; HERE).
First appearance: Future Science Fiction, July 1953.
Short short story (9 pages).
Online at (HERE).
(Note: Text faded but legible.)
(Further note: Could be a very slow load.)
     ". . . it was a mere matter of applying the principles of newsgathering to interplanetary skullduggery."

Something is rotten in Interstellar Carriers, but finding out who it is can get a man killed . . . .

Main characters:
~ Scott Warren:
  "We don't want any heroics—just information."
~ Art Roper:
  ". . . I want a still hotter story, and I think I can get you one."
~ Ross Parsons:
  "The labor situation on this godforsaken planet stinks."
~ Herbert Gray:
  "It's a slander on labor, and you can quote me."
~ Sargin:
  "Your journalistic endeavors have come to my attention . . ."
~ Liga:
  "This I know; I spit."
~ Atkins:
  "There's more, but it's a blast at the union; nothing else about the widows and orphans."

Typo: "whoesaler".

References and resources:
- "employing scab labor": "A strikebreaker (sometimes called a scab, blackleg, or knobstick) is a person who works despite an ongoing strike. Strikebreakers are usually individuals who were not employed by the company prior to the trade union dispute, but rather hired after or during the strike to keep the organization running. 'Strikebreakers' may also refer to workers (union members or not) who cross picket lines to work." Relations between labor (or "trade") unions and management have been sketchy from the start; see Wikipedia (HERE) and (HERE).
- "Black markets": When things get scarce, people figure out other ways to get them; see Wikipedia (HERE).
- "Come on, gate, let's mediate": A variant on a then quite popular comedian's catchphrase: 
"[Jerry] Colonna's usual salutation to [Bob] Hope was, 'Greetings, Gate!' and listeners soon began saying it." See Wikipedia (HERE).
- Previous adventures with Scott Warren are highlighted (HERE), (HERE), and (HERE).

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