Prologue

Excerpts from the OmniSentia site:

The Work for the Dole program (WfD), which started as a temporary program in the mid-twenty first, is the current method of funding for the increasing costs involved in caring for the homeless that used to burden the government’s coffers in the USA. This is similar to programs going back to the mid-twentieth starting with the so-called War On Poverty...

... While other programs had intentions to make the people being benefited by the various welfare programs pay their way if possible, a number of forces that were happening at the same time provided a confluence that eventually resulted in the eventual success of the WfD program...

... One major factor was the establishment of the People’s Candidate Party (PCP) movement of the twenty first in addition to its effect on the make up of the Supreme Court. Another was the relaxation of many of the sex laws throughout the USA. A third major positive influence on the WfD program’s success was the advanced applications of neurological technology. Of course, there were other less major influences (Norvo 193 Thesis, 2189). It is now understood that it was the right program at the right time, although its success wasn’t fully noticed until at least ten years after the program started and after a few tweaks to the underlying principals of the program were made. PCP presidential candidate Humphries described it the “only completely fair, cost effective, and foolproof program ever conceived for helping the under-privileged get back on their feet.” (Humphries primary, 2184)...

... The treasury department administered both the WfD and the New Social Security (NSSA) programs, with the latter program focusing on the elderly and disabled. The big difference, and central to the WfD program, was the WfD’s contracts that all people in the program were required to sign. To get into the WfD program, a person had to declare their insolvency with the treasury court, and a contract would be created that detailed the expenses of the government purchase of the bankruptcy, ensuring all creditors were paid their fair share of a percentage of the money owed, which was determined on a sliding scale depending on the amount of debt. The participants were then provided room and board in facilities administered by approved charities, with their cost added into the value of the contracts. At first, these contracts had a ten year maximum term, after which they would expire and the participants that hadn’t yet paid off the contracts would have to either redeclare their insolvency, or transfer to a different program, such as the NSSA...

... While an adult (citizen at or over the age of sixteen) was in the WfD program, he or she was supposed to look for employment or training that would allow them to eventually pay back the amount of debt accrued on the contract at a very low interest rate. Full payment of the contract expired the contract, and the beneficiary would once again enfranchise, given the right to fully participate in all citizen benefits. There were additional incentives available for quick repayment, such as...

... The WfD program, as initially conceived, would have languished as most charities discovered that some people were not looking for employment and instead just waiting for the expiration of their contracts. This was the so-called “escape clause” in the program’s initial charter. They would then renegotiate their contract values, entering bankruptcy again, with the cycle never ending until retirement...

... The arguments made by the PCP were that people that simply waited for their contracts to expire were akin to the “Welfare Queens” derided in the late twentieth century (Articles about Linda Taylor, Chicago Tribune, 1974; Jet Magazine, 1974; Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act, 1996), only this time, race wasn’t brought up as an issue. A rider to a minor funding bill (Government Funding Addendum, 2175) allowed for the one time sale of contracts to a third party that agreed to “Sponsor” the current value of the contracts, plus a standard percentage to the charity and government to cover the administrative costs of the program. Known as “Sponsors,” these people agreed to put the person whose contract was purchased to work for a period of time that was calculated by a complex series of formulas...

... The availability of the contracts to be sold to Sponsors made the program more palatable to the charities providing room and board for the people in the program as well as the treasury department, as this allowed for a larger majority of the contracts to eventually be repaid at a quicker rate. With more and more contracts being picked up by sponsorships, a lot of the negativity toward the WfD program disappeared and its popularity with the general public suddenly blossomed...

... Courts argued whether or not the contracts being sold in return for possibly menial work required of the beneficiary by the Sponsor created a return of indentured servitude, something prohibited in the late nineteenth century by the thirteenth amendment. The argument was that the contracts were “virtually indistinguishable” from the indentures that were explicitly prohibited. Notable arguments were made by...

... Eventually, the Supreme Court decided 8-1 in the ACLU vs US (2179) case and ruled that the WfD contracts were not private contracts. Rather, they were authorized explicitly by law in order to provide benefits. In addition, it was pointed out contracts could not be resold and thus people weren’t being turned into commodities. Finally, the ten year maximum “escape clause” allowed the beneficiaries a way to avoid servitude. For these reasons, the court determined that the contracts were not within the purview of the thirteenth amendment. The dissenting opinion authored by Hayes offered a blistering commentary on how servitude was servitude, whether or not it was authorized by an act of Congress...

... The ten-year “escape clause” was removed as a rider to the Budget Act, 2183, and the Supreme Court revisited the issue in ACLU vs US (2187), and determined in a vote 7-2 the “escape clause” wasn’t necessary for the contracts to be constitutional. Again, Hayes wrote the dissenting opinion, which was signed on by the newly appointed Uhutu...

... Coupled with the recently patented neurological Microservus Principis Unit (MPU), colloquially known as the “collar” because it was a device injected into the neck, compliance from the beneficiary whose contract had been sold, now known simply as “the collared,” was guaranteed, and early issues experienced by the WfD program, such as runaways, people refusing to work, and the like were less likely to occur with use of the collars...

... Any doubt as to the legality as to the use of the collars was removed when the WfD Enforcement Act (2187) was signed into law that that specifically allowed such uses...

... Hollywood and the sex industry, which were now seeing a boom after the Victimless Crime Act (2145) or VCA that passed in the mid twenty first and was deemed constitutional by the USA VS Morality Brigade decision (2152), became one of the largest source of sponsorships...


Yeah. I was a history major in college. I actually knew all this, However, I still had to look it up on the Omni in order to get everything right for this memoir. After all, it was a few years since I actually checked on the actual law once things changed in my life. It’s a boring read for most of you and I know that, which explains why I only included excerpts from the Omni. The entire article is hundreds of pages long! The general opinion of the American public is that the WfD is a brilliant solution to a problem that had no obvious negative consequences.

Looking at it from the outside, you would never know that there were indeed issues to be reckoned with. I never thought it would ever have anything to do with my life, for instance, and so I was also blissfully unaware of the negative side of the program before I became involved in it.

I wonder what the people that were responsible for designing and “improving” the WfD program would think of its darker side...

Chapter 1 »

Story tagged with:
Science Fiction / Futuristic / Near Future / AI / Politics / Slavery / Travel /