This is an uncomfortable topic, perhaps even bordering on distasteful. That being said, the world I have in mind will not be complete unless I can settle on a threshold that the "illuminati" would use as a sign for their culling to begin. First a quick disambiguation of terms:
- "illuminati" - this is the archetypal group of shadow-funding, deep-state oligarchs. Not too much is known of them, but assume they exist and they will be the ones doing the culling. It's best not to ask too much about them! Everything except their motives is likely out of scope.
- "cull" - this term, albeit a distasteful one (as its usually in the context of animals/ecology), is the act of reducing the population who possess undesirable characteristics.
That is a good start, but it veritably begs the question: what is the "undesirable characteristic," What's the motive? That's where my world falls apart. I can't think of a realistic motive whose course of action was unequivocally a culling of the world population. Here is a small list of motives I researched and rejected:
- They know too much: The age of information, computers and interconnectedness threaten to expose the illuminati. Rejected because: cull as they might, the illuminati might still lose the cyber war. It would be better to cull the internet.
- They blight our world: While clambering on their hamster wheel, the masses have soiled the Earth with plastic waste, waste water and worse. Also they have caused many of the "illuminati's" favorite vacation resorts to sink below sea level. Rejected because: killing the masses after they made such a big mess seems untimely; better to keep them around until they fix things. Also it makes the illuminati comically similar to Green Peace.
What is a realistic motive to cull the population? Which heuristic would the "illuminati" be looking at carefully for when to begin the cull? So in other words I'd like a general theory but also something quantifiable, ideally anyway.
- How the illuminati cull the population is out of scope, just assume they can should the need arise
- You may try to salvage one of my rejected ideas if you see hope in it or submit a new one of your own
- Assume everything to be Earth-like.
- Who's being culled? The whole world's population
- Timeframe: flexible, fast culls or slow culls are allowed
- Quality Metric: The fewer substitutes to culling the population the better. This means that a good answer will suggest a motive where the only logical outcome is to cull the population. (not something else, like take out the satellites or the electric grid)