Narr: The Earth Guard - the planet's most powerful heroes united
in the common goal of protecting the innocent people of planet Earth and
from threats of all kinds. From the Guard Tower, their base of operations,
they watch over the citizens and spring into action at any sign of danger.
To that end, the Guard take shifts monitoring events all over the globe.
Sooner or later, they all have to take a shift of… Guard Duty. This week: The
Earth Guard in "Acting in Union."
(The Earth Guard is assembled for a full meeting. There is some milling about
and chatting heard.)
MF: Hey guys, while you’re all here, I just wanted to ask if anybody
is willing to make a guest appearance on my-
MF: Tff. Whatever. I’ll be the only superstar then.
VL: Seriously, you have no sense of what is or is not appropriate, do you?
Stallion: All right, attention everyone. Thank you for coming. I’ve
called this meeting because I think there are a few things we need to discuss
in regards to our arrangement with the government.
BB: You’re damned right we do! These people need to live, and the government
Stallion: I understand that-
BB: Jack gets his pay docked when he has to go home and take care of his
family, Barbara can’t afford to stop working, even though she’s
injured… You’re not taking care of these people, Chuck!
Stallion: I’m trying to tell you that-
BB: I know you founded this Earth Guard, but if this is the way you-
Stallion: God damn it, Bob, shut up! I am still leader of this team, and
as such, I think I have to right to speak before you jump to conclusions about
how I’m letting down the Guard!
BB: (beat) Fine. You have the floor.
Stallion: And I don’t need you to give it to me. (beat) Now, as I was
saying… since Warren Grant replaced Davis Moore as our Government contact,
there have been significant changes in some of our coverage and financial
Jack: We’ve noticed.
PB: I haven’t.
BG: Why would you let them do that to us?
MF: Yeah- come on, man. What’s the deal?
Stallion: People, please! I wasn’t given a choice in the matter. If
Grant had his way, he would have dropped medical coverage completely.
DF: On what basis?
Stallion: As far as he’s concerned, we’re vigilantes. His feeling
is that we choose to help people, we choose to put ourselves in the line of
fire, knowing the dangers involved, so why should they have to pay for our
Jack: But, we’re helping people!
Stallion: He seems to feel that if the Government has no oversight in how
we operate, they should not be liable for costs associated with operation.
BB: That’s preposterous! We fulfill a public need!
Stallion: He wanted to pull the funding for cleanup costs, collateral damage
as well. I had to give him some sort of a compromise, and this seemed like
the best option at the time.
BG: Except that it totally screwed me over.
Stallion: I understand that. That’s why I called this meeting. Something
needs to be done.
MF: What can we do? They’re the Government. Why would they listen to
Stallion: I propose that we take a hard line with Grant. Tell him we’ll
accept nothing less than full restoration of the provisions set by Davis Moore.
CF: Um… or what? Are we… are we going to attack the capitol?
Stallion: What? No!
CF: Ok, good. Because that’s what Dr. Fast thought you meant.
DF: Wha- It was not! My mind is capable of processing millions of entirely
separate concepts at the exact same-
Stallion: We’re not going to attack the capitol!
VL: Then what exactly are you proposing?
Stallion: If he won’t agree to our terms… we go on strike.
ALL: (Things like "What?" "Are you serious?" Etc.)
Jack: We can’t go on strike!
Stallion: Everyone, please! Settle down. (they do) I know this is an important
issue, that’s why I called this meeting. Everyone gets a vote. We’re
not going to do this unless it’s what the group wants. Does anyone want
to say anything before we take the vote?
ALL: (Everyone wants to. Things like "Me." "Right here." "I
Stallion: All right, one at a time, you’ll all get a chance. Doctor,
please, go ahead.
DF: Thank you. We need to be pragmatic about this. We need to ask where we
place the value of what we do. Are we doing this for the money, or are we
doing this because it’s the right thing to do?
BB: It’s not about that at all. We do it because it’s right,
but that doesn’t change the fact that people need money to live.
MF: Says a billionaire.
BG: Then take it from me- we need money to live. If there wasn’t two
of me, I couldn’t do my job properly with this broken arm. So, I’d
be on leave at my day job and unable to perform on the Guard. How would I
DF: May I continue please?
Stallion: Of course. Everyone, wait your turn, please.
DF: As I was saying, I think we can see that if we evaluate the situation
logically, we can come to a clear decision. If we say that better coverage
is required to facilitate our better serving the greater good, and that a
strike is the best way to persuade the government to provide those funds-
Jack: But it isn’t right! I mean, I need that coverage desperately,
but we can’t go on strike in order to get it! What if, what if one of
our villains attacks? People could be hurt!
DF: You see, Jack- that’s why we need to look at it objectively. If
we can say definitively that the better funding would lead to a greater good,
then a certain amount of damage would be considered acceptable losses.
PB: What losses are acceptable to you? Have mortal lives been deemed so worthless
now? How many lives would be squandered away before it would outweigh financial
BB: It’s not about financial gain, it’s about respect. I don’t
need money, I don’t need medical coverage-
MF: Because you’re in no danger. Robot and all.
BB: But that’s not the point! We’re doing a public service. This
government seems to think anyone who spends their time in anything other than
self interest is an idiot! That’s why we don’t pay teachers well,
we don’t pay police well, and now, they’re trying to take money
away from the Earth Guard. I already cover over half our operational expenses
myself. What do they want from us?
CF: I don’t know… I mean in some ways, I help people for selfish
reasons. If people suffer, the world of dreams gets really depressing. I like
when it’s yellow.
MF: Howard’s right. I don’t help people because I feel like I
have to. It’s a job. For me, being on the Earth Guard is just like singing
on my album: I have an ability, and someone offered to pay me to use it. I
wouldn’t be making a record if I wasn’t getting paid.
VL: Who’s Howard?
BG: So if the Evolutionist had offered you a job first, you’d be on
the other team?
MF: I doubt he covers any medical at all.
VL: Look, you guys are missing the point. They need us more than we need
them. They can’t push us around like this. We dictate the terms of this
relationship, and if they don’t like it… they’re on their
Jack: That’s so heartless!
Stallion: We can’t do this if we’re divided on the issue. We
need a clear majority, otherwise it’ll tear the team apart.
BB: The bylaws of the Guard do have provisions for strike, and according
to those, we need two-thirds of the group in favor.
Stallion: Correct. But it also says that once a strike is declared, any member
of the Guard found to have broken the strike will be kicked off the team,
so it’s a very serious decision.
BG: I think we’re all taking it very seriously.
CF: I don’t think I understand what we’re arguing about.
VL: (sigh) We’re considering going on strike until they give us better
CF: Oh ok. Coverage… Like blankets?
Stallion: No… no, it’s about money, Captain. You know, like the
stipend you collect?
CF: Oh, I see! Wait… we get paid?
PB: Is money all that holds sway in your minds? Is not doing what’s
right it’s own reward?
BG: Of course it is- but you don’t need to buy things. The companies
you shill for give you everything. And you don’t need to eat!
BB: This is getting us nowhere. Let’s just take a preliminary vote,
see where everyone stands. If we don’t a two-thirds vote, we can discuss
Stallion: Fine. I want to be clear on this- this vote will authorize the
threat of strike in negotiation with Warren Grant. It doesn’t mean we’d
be on strike immediately, it merely gives me the authority to declare one
if necessary. I’ve got a meeting with Grant tomorrow afternoon. Are
we all clear on what we’re voting here? … All right. All in favor,
Jack: What? But you said-
MF: I gotta vote my wallet.
Stallion: All opposed?
CF: Why is everyone looking at me?
BB: Forget it. Six for, two against, one absent minded. The motion passes.
Stallion: All right. I’ll do everything in my power to make sure it
won’t come to it, but if Grant won’t meet our terms… we
strike. Grant will be coming to the tower tomorrow afternoon for a meeting.
I’ll keep everyone posted after that. Until then, it’s business
as usual. Meeting dismissed.
CF: What? … Oh. Foal says she thinks this is a mistake.
CF: Foal. She’s right over there.
MF: You know, Howard, you might want to keep all this Foal talk to youself.
CF: Who’s Howard?