Taklamakan

Pete took this in stride. NAFTA, Sphere, and Europe: the
trilateral superpowers jostled about with the uneasy
regularity of sunspots, periodically brewing storms in the proxy regimes of the South. During his fifty-plus years, Pete had
seen the Asian Cooperation Sphere change its public image
repeatedly, in a weird political rhythm. Exotic vacation spot
on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Baffling alien threat on Mondays and
Wednesdays. Major trading partner each day and every day,
including weekends and holidays. At the current political moment, the Asian Cooperation Sphere was deep into its Inscrutable Menace mode, logging lots of grim media coverage as NAFTA’s chief economic adversary. As far as
Pete could figure it, this basically meant that a big crowd of goofy North American economists were trying to act really macho.Their major complaint was that the Sphere was selling NAFTA too many neat, cheap, well-made consumer goods. That was an extremely
silly thing to get killed about. But people perished horribly for
much stranger reasons than that.

By Bruce Sterling via http://lib.ru/

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