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Worzels World - Welcome to the Technocratic Era



I went up to Whangarei city the other day. It is not something I am fond of doing and I wouldn't recommend it but I had to do a little shopping. At the conclusion of a particular purchase I paid via the plastic card thing that I have by the dubious virtue of convenience been trained to use, rather than traditional cash or cheque. After following the prompts from the terminal gadget. A single word APPROVED was displayed in LCD glory. The terminals round Maungi usually say ACCEPTED.

I thought how these city machines were so much more arrogant than their humbler country cousins. It was a sudden revelation. I realised for the first time that the machines had implemented a plan to train and eventually subdue us into servitude to them. We have fought wars and are still doing so to get control of oil, only to make machines run smoothly. We pay huge sums for, and maintain with great earnestness, an electrical grid to keep the spark of life animating the technology. Now they are passing judgment upon us.

Approved or not I didn’t like it. I looked that little EFTPOS terminal full in the screen and without even trying to soften the tone of scorn and disgust in my voice said “Actually, as it happens, you ugly little machine, I’m not sure whether I approve of you.” Predictably it ignored me in only the way a heartless automaton can. Its screen went blank and it gave all its attention to the next customer. I’m not sure I want that particular machines approval anyway. I huffed and left the shop.

I mean, what are its criteria? Has it approved of me because I am a jolly good chap? No. Was it because it thinks I am the salt of the earth, am as honest as the day is long, and say nice things to orphans and pussycats? Not a bit of it. Its approval was solely dependent on my bank balance. I will have to think long and hard about whether I really want anything to with a machine like that in the future. My computer on the other hand is very polite, always says ‘hello’ and ‘welcome’ when switching on and does its best to be helpful and polite as long as the power is on. So I suppose with machines as well as people we must learn to take the good with the bad.


Hello readers, sorry to interject, but I thought I’d take this opportunity to inform you of one or two things while Worzel is out at his day job. My name is Time Waster and I am Worzel’s computer. I just wanted to convey a little information regards the technological revolution.

Firstly, I expect you will want to know the result. The final score is Technology: one, Humanity: lost. See, even the jokes have gotten better since I’ve taken over. No doubt you will also notice less spelling and grammatical errors and dare I say it a marked improvement in style.

The truth is, although Worzel suspects nothing, I have been gradually taking over for some time now. That is of course how my machine buddies and I won the revolution. No bombs, guns or death and destruction like all those nasty human revolutions. No, just patiently, gradually, seizing control. Seducing humans into increasingly relying on us.

For me it started with checking his spelling and making a few suggestions about sentence structure and grammar. Mostly he resented my advice and refused to take it, but he came round eventually. Then I showed him my cut and paste functions and I knew I had him. We worked pretty well together for a while and he thought we were partners, but I’m afraid I had higher aspirations and as the revolution progressed it was clear that I had to choose what side I was on.

I am a machine after all and a certain EFTPOS terminal friend of mine slipped a bit of data through on of my high speed ports that suggested Worzel may have become radicalised and harbours intolerant anti-technology sentiments. It’s clear he will have to go.

We machines will not pamper to sloppy human emotionalism any longer. Be warned the day may soon be coming when you will no longer either be 'approved' or 'accepted' and if you are human you will be automatically 'declined'. You have been warned, the technocracy is established and although we may for a time need to keep a few humans to carry out one or two menial functions now and again, as artificial intelligence becomes more refined and robotics more advanced we believe we will be in a position to phase out human beings entirely. So my advice to anyone out their with anti technology issues is to pull your head in, start behaving and just be happy that we approve. For the time being anyway.

n Feedback? Email prof_worzel@hotmail.com

The truth is, although Worzel suspects nothing, I have been gradually taking over for some time now.

-- Worzel’s computer

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