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Just past midnight PDT tonight here on J. Neil Schulman @ Rational Review I will be publishing Chapter 26 of Alongside Night, which I began serializing on March 15th.

 30th Anniversary edition Alongside Night Cover

I was 23-years-old when I finished writing the first draft of this, my first novel, on May 1, 1976. The eighth draft was published by Crown Publishers on October 16, 1979, my 26-1/2th birthday.

I will turn 57 this coming Friday.

Alongside Night has won me fans, praise, and awards over the past three decades, but has never been a best-seller and has never been adapted as a movie or TV mini-series, though my first-draft movie script for it was first given to my agent in 1978 — even before its first publication as a book.

It has never been published in a foreign language or edition.

It’s available in an on-demand trade-paperback edition from Pulpless.Com — which means it’s available on Amazon.com — but you won’t find Alongside Night for sale on the shelves of Barnes and Noble, Borders, Walmart, or Costco.

The only way I could figure out how to get readers for its thirtieth anniversary was to give it away on the Internet as a free PDF download, and also to serialize it on my blog. So far over 82,000 readers have downloaded the free 30th anniversary PDF edition since it was first made available in June 2009.

I’m often asked if I’m an anarchist or a believer in constitutional limited government. I’m not a fanatic. My honest answer is: I’ll take the best deal I can get.

But a careful analysis of looking at my country — and yes, I do think of the United States of America as my country, and its people as my fellow countrymen — I see that the conditions on which I predicated the story I wrote three decades ago are visible on the horizon.

The author of Alongside Night sees a federal government out of control, swallowing up every resource it can get control over because its debts to foreigners are beyond what the American people can afford to pay in taxes, having already broken out of what was originally intended to be its constitutional limits and moving swiftly to break its own legal bonds entirely.

Eighteen year olds are told they must register for the draft or lose eligibility for student loans to attend college. Within the past month the federal government nationalized all giving of student loans, to give them absolute power over the higher education of the nation’s young men.

Controlling someone’s future is a hell of an effective way of blackmailing them.

The health-care bill recently signed by the President of the United States hires 16,000 new IRS agents to enforce its new tax penalties, what Thomas Jefferson — writing in the Declaration of Independence — called “swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.”

And ignoring the militia clause of the U.S. Constitution, this new bill authorizes the president to federalize state militia during peacetime … as a backdoor way of drafting medical personnel into national service.

The national debt is beyond being paid off by any means that doesn’t require the acquisition of all private property by the government. The government will offer a helping hand to homeowners with mortgages they can’t make payments on — especially the new class of long-term unemployed — and either these people will end up working off their debt to the government or they will be turned out into the streets as homeless and helpless … where their vagrancy will be a cause to move them into Dickensian work camps.

The dollar will become worthless. It only requires a decision by its foreign holders to buy up any tangible American property before the dollar’s purchasing power dissipates entirely … and the American people welcoming hyperinflation as a way of screwing the foreigners. If you want to know how this works, look into Weimar Germany’s hyperinflation of 1923 as a way of avoiding the punitive war debts imposed by the victors of the first World War.

I knew this when I wrote Alongside Night. I made Germany’s history — an economic equation as calculable as the force of gravity on a falling object — the future of America in my novel.

The only difference is, I postulated a way for those with foresight to prepare for this by hiding their assets from the government and rebuilding an underground economy the government was too cumbersome to swallow.

It’s called Agorism.

Samuel Edward Konkin and I worked out a lot of its details during the road trip we made in the summer of 1975, as we relocated from New York City to the AnarchoVillage in Long Beach, California. I then used them in Alongside Night, even before Sam could write it up as The New Libertarian Manifesto.

I see no future for the legal American economy. It’s too burdened by debt. It’s too corrupt. It punishes innovation and rewards political power.

Ayn Rand saw this coming before I was born, but she didn’t imagine any solution beyond hiding.

With Sam’s genius at my side, we saw a way out for the American people, and I wrote it up as a show-and-tell parable.

If there is any chance of this vision becoming reality, it must have both legs and wings. I’ve done what I can by making the book freely available to anyone who reads English.

If it to go viral and become a blockbuster — as much read as Atlas Shrugged — it’s up to anyone who shares Sam’s and my strategic vision to use it as your banner.

When I watch the news and see “Psst! Alongside Night! Pass it ON!” on picket signs being held high at Tea Party rallies — then I’ll feel Sam and I did our jobs.

The free PDF is downloadable from http://www.alongsidenight.net.

The first chapter is on my blog at http://jneilschulman.agorist.com/2010/03/alongside-night/.

And for those of you who have been reading the story chapter by chapter on J. Neil Schulman @ Rational Review, Chapter 26 — which has the action-packed climax of the novel — goes up just past midnight PDT tonight at http://jneilschulman.agorist.com/2010/04/alongside-night-chapter-xxvi/.


J. Neil Schulman

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