“People think it’s the wheels, you know. But we needed to make sure everyone was fully occupied. It kept them out of trouble. The devil makes work for idle hands, and all that? There weren’t that many of us Incas – and there were people all over South America that relied on us keeping things under control. Once you have wheels you get more done with less people, and that was the last thing we wanted. Full employment was very important, it was the thing that held the empire together.
“And look at the roads, I mean, you people built roads all over the place and then went and let all the common people wander up and down them. That’s asking for trouble, you wouldn’t find the commons on our roads, no way. If you weren’t on official or military business, you better not get caught on the road. We didn’t want people moving around. How could the tax inspectors keep an eye on things if the people in their area wandered off?
“Then there’s writing, some people make such a big thing about the writing. We had the quipu, but we had the sense to make the whole business secret, only the specially trained could use it to record things or read what what it said. Knots and strings, that’s what it was to the rest of us. Well, I mean, look what happened when you people let Gutenberg get away with printing stuff the commoners could read. Look at all the trouble that stirred up.
“Serves you right, I say”