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Infinite Bureaucracy a short story by Anne E. Clements. It appears in Strange New Worlds VII. It is told in the form of various official business papers and transcripts of subspace radio communications.


Quark orders a glerint of self-sealing stembolts from Flem on Tzenketh Okl!a. After various incidents, the stembolts end up in the Oort cloud of the Aeolian system.



FlemV'kreza O !nragtha NenzethQuarkRomSibek
Referenced only
BirkLi Yuan FitzsimmonsGolnJancy VenkataramaniNirrep V'tetsoh


Aeolia PentaAeolia PrimeAeolian systemAlpha CentauriBajorCardassiaDeep Space 9FerenginarFromaginar IIStarbase 201Starbase 247Tzenketh Okl!a

Starships and vehicles

Wings of the Morning
Referenced only
!!iikb& a'na 21Vilossia TwilightZippy One

Races and cultures

Referenced only

States and organizations

Tz'grtha n!hing koStarfleetUnited Federation of PlanetsSmith FreightwaysVulcan Science Academy

Other references

Aeolian plumuledaytoniteduraniumfeliformFerengi Rules of AcquisitionFerengi languageFourth ClawGiffla-37XZglerintgold-pressed latinumhomeworldOort cloudrobesalvage reclamation formself-sealing stemboltsmugglingstardateTzikaa!n



Background information

  • The author commented on their inspiration for the story: "We had a bit of a regime change at my day job, and the new management team brought in a host of new procedures and controls—all well-intentioned and ultimately productive, but there was a certain period of, shall we say, adjustment required. At that time I found myself wandering the halls muttering 'Infinite Bureaucracy in Infinite Combinations!'— unfortunately, very few people there got the reference, but it occurred to me that it would make a wonderful SNW story title. After all, in a Federation composed of thousands of technologically advanced civilizations, let's face it, despite Mr. Roddenberry's utopian biases, that is exactly what you'd get". (Voyages of Imagination)


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