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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Evil on a Budget

- or - How to threaten the free world on fifty dollars a day.

Back in the good old days . . . er, bad old days, running an evil empire was a lot simpler: it was a lot easier (and cheaper) to find a remote and forbidding location to put a fortress from which to launch one's diabolical schemes, minions were relatively cheap and generally pretty reliable, and one could count on being able to support a moderate-sized campaign of world-threatening efforts from the returns of a reasonable investment portfolio, especially if one timed stock trades to coincide with relevant threats against humankind.

Over the past few decades, the cost of effective villainy has skyrocketed, outpacing the Dow, the Consumer Price Index, and even health insurance. These days it's hard to find a secluded mountaintop or isolated island that hasn't already been covered with condos. All the really formidable-looking abandoned warehouses have been converted into high-priced lofts. And don't even think about finding a "fixer upper" castle for a reasonable price. --


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