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The Porcupine's Quill:  A Satire Column
by Arshad M. Khan
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the satire column
Porcupine's Quill
January 24, 2016


News Item:  The Chinese are helping cash-strapped countries across the world build
infrastructure.  This week they announced deals in Egypt to the tune of $15 billion,
and multiple projects including high-speed rails in Indonesia and Iran.

Once upon a time there was a giant dragon ... a dragon who had been asleep for
centuries.  Then one day a teeny, tiny little man brought it an elixir, a rejuvenating
elixir, and an elixir so powerful that the barest whiff by the sleeping dragon was
enough to stir it out of sleep and into action.

And act it did ... for within the space of a generation, he was almost as spry as a
youngster -- albeit not as fearsome as he had been in his real youth.

No, he was a different dragon.  Although he was physically active, his knowledge of
the world and his longevity had made him weary.  He truly was a very old, very weary
dragon.  And he was especially weary of war.  He had seen that war only begets war,
changing little.

He had learned instead to help people to help themselves for as they prospered ...
so did he.  While his main rival played the zero-sum game thinking, 'you lose, I win,'
the wily and wise dragon played the plus-sum game:  when others prospered, he
prospered even more ...

No one knows the end of this story; it is clear, however, who rational participants in
these games would favor.  It is also clear there is much hatred in the world even
today for the dragon's rival ... and wariness of the dragon's intentions.