750 words.

The city of Indus, one of the largest cities left in the world. A sprawling metropolis of skyscrapers rising so high that, from the ground, the sky couldn’t be seen save for a few select spaces. The city had prospered greatly from the introduction of the ‘sharing of information act.’ a law passed that gave the police the right keep record any information they wanted from the populace of the city. At first the act faced extreme opposition but as the poverty rate increased so did the crime rate. Eventually the masses turned in favour of the more right wing political parties. By the time the act was finally initiated, the right wing parties had won office by a landslide victory. At first the results seemed to be in favour of the act. The crime rate plummeted as more and more criminals were apprehended thanks to the easy access of the information that helped to bring them to justice.

Eventually however the results started to slow. Be it because of the lack of criminals or of people entering the city but the act again seemed to be losing favour and there were talks of votes to remove it from usage. With the chance of their master key idea being removed, the right wing parties had to find a new way to ensure their stay in government. They decided that they only way they could keep their stay was through money and as such they started to sell the information that the police were gathering to any company that wanted to buy it and with a little side dealing, most of the police force was also added to their payroll.

As the information leaked companies became more and more successful at targeting their adverts at people. The increased income allowed more information to be bought which again boosted the companies’ profits which in turn helped to lace the government’s pockets. It wasn’t just the businesses that benefited though, it became easier and easier for people to find what they wanted. With just a few simple clicks on their computer they could have almost anything they wanted and there would always be a market for what they wanted as companies could tailor their products to the people who wanted them by simply monitoring what the people were talking about on social media sites, blogs and other internet sources. Eventually the people became lazy, contented with their lives and being, what seemed to them, to be pampered. Why complain when anything you want could be yours for a price and with such ease? When the time came for another election the only people who turned up were the people being paid to do so.

Within a few simple years a political party had used standard information about the people to earn enough money to buy the city. Most rival political parties were gone within a year, fading out to the sound of apathy. Now, with the entire city under the control, the government gave up their pretences of being there for the people, they sat back in their chairs letting the money sweep in and protecting only their own interests. The police started to sell their information, not just to businesses but to anyone who could afford to pay their prices. Suddenly identity theft was on the rise. People could lose everything in a night whilst anyone with the money could change identities like changing clothes. As the police started to become more corrupt the crime rate started to climb. As the upper echelons of society started to weigh down on the lower classes more and more people started to turn to crime to try and scrape a living for themselves and their families.

Those rich enough to keep their heads above the rising poverty level flocked to the upper levels of the city, the skyscrapers and the high rise apartments were filled with the super-rich, those still lucky enough to be on the governments pay role and anyone with enough political leverage to get themselves a hand up. The luckiest of all were members of past opposing parties, kept afloat to keep up an appearance of diplomacy in the city, though everyone knew they were nothing but glorified pets being kept as a sign of power.

As the rich rose the poor sank deeper and deeper into the depths of the city. The darkened alleys became rank with criminals. Murderers and thieves, rapists, vandals and all sorts of gangs that fought amongst themselves. There was no worse fate than to live on the streets below the skyline and look upwards towards the shining upper city, knowing that you would never reach there. For once you had fallen down into the heart of the city, there was no way out again.

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