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The War on Dreams: Part IV

THE DREAM CZAR SPEAKS

Since being appointed Director of the Department of National Dream Control in 2001, “Dream Czar” Rupert C. Gray has led a persistent and controversial campaign to wipe out dream trafficking in the United States. The War on Dreams has drawn substantial criticism from around the globe, with opponents calling it everything from a “joke” to a “travesty” to “the end of humankind as we know it.” This Ridiculous World recently caught up with Mr. Gray at his ranch in East Texas.

The following is a transcript of the interview:

TRW: Mr. Gray, thank you for taking the time to speak with us.

GRAY: Please, call my Your Highness. [winks] Just kidding.

TRW: You were sworn in on March 3rd, 2001. Since then, what progress has been made on the War on Dreams?

GRAY: A hell of a lot. The United States – the world – is a much safer place than it was seven years ago. The proof is in the numbers. There are now over 2 million US citizens behind bars. Americans watch 250 billion hours of television a year. The media has a good solid control over the people. Fear is at an all-time high. Let me tell you a little secret – frightened people don’t think, and they sure as hell don’t dream.

TRW: That hardly seems like a secret. Which brings me to our next question: Your campaign has drawn a great deal of criticism over what many consider to be immoral tactics. How can you defend yourself against such opposition?

GRAY: It’s easy. You see, the beauty of my campaign is that it requires very little force. Immoral? Let me tell you – the people do the work. Simple psychology. People prefer to follow the easiest course – the safest route. Of course, we do what we can to ensure that there is never too much intellectual stimulation. The DNDC funds several programs in association with the various religious organizations, TV networks, and so on. In short, we provide money to organizations with stake in the dullness of the American mind. I’ve developed a bit of a motto in this business: Keep them scared, keep them fed, and you’ll keep them docile.

TRW: That sounds a lot like training a dog.

GRAY: Doesn’t it?

TRW: Do you believe that the progress of the DNDC has influenced the current presidential race?

GRAY: Without a doubt. Just look at the candidates. There is no room for outlandish hope or fervor, only healthy resignation. I couldn’t be more pleased. With any luck, we’ll have something similar to the 2000 and ’04 elections.

TRW: But the last election was a near stalemate. The president lost the majority vote in 2000. Why is that desirable?

GRAY: Because there is an illusion of purpose. You see… in this sort of situation, people will ignore their consciences for the sake of some very obvious goal. Getting rid of the incumbent, for example. When the race is that close, people get caught up in the spirit. They feel like their vote could be the one – you know? They actually think they’re doing something very honest and democratic. Let me put it this way: anger is not a serious threat to the War on Dreams. It’s ok that most of the country hates the president, because they can’t – won’t – do anything about it, other than bitch a little. Sometimes, maintaining a simple sense of hatred in the people is as effective, if not more, than a free mind. Hatred we can direct very easily. When people start to trust themselves, start to think apart from the mainstream, then we have a problem.

TRW: What do you see as the greatest threat to the War on Dreams?

GRAY: Well, some years ago I’d probably say youth. But nowadays we have that fairly under control. Most kids these days are just jaded enough not to do anything. We’ve successfully managed to foster the idea that not thinking is actually an act of rebellion. So, I’d have to say: you.

TRW: Me?

GRAY: Maybe. What I mean is this – there lies in everyone a potential for dreaming. As much as we can keep things maintained, we get strays. Imaginations. Such a thing might be isolated, a spark, but it could also spread. Of course, we’re working on ways to stop that altogether.

TRW: That’s wonderful.

GRAY: No, it isn’t. We prefer that no one wonders at all.

TRW: Well, thank you for your time.

GRAY: GOD bless America.

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