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"We're about 20 minutes away from the point where Clarke's law kicks in and technology becomes indistinguishable from magic."
- Peter Watts

Moon As Prison  
  The moon is a prison without bars.  

My Grandfather Stone claimed that Luna was only open prison in history. No bars, no guards, no rules—and no need for them. Back in early days, he said, before was clear that transportation was a life sentence, some lags tried to escape. By ship, of course—and, since a ship is mass-rated almost to a gram, that meant a ship's officer had to be bribed.

Some were bribed, they say. But were no escapes; man who takes bribe doesn't necessarily stay bribed. I recall seeing a man just after eliminated through East Lock; don't suppose a corpse eliminated in orbit looks prettier.

From The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, by Robert Heinlein.
Published by GP Putnam in 1966
Additional resources -

Compare to the asteroid prison from One Against the Legion (1939) by Jack Williamson, the Alcatraz of Space from Reunion on Ganymede (1938) by Clifford Simak, zero-time jail from A World Out of Time (1976) by Larry Niven, Brainlock from Mona Lisa Overdrive (1988) by William Gibson and the orbital penal colony from Tekwar (1989) by William Shatner.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
  More Ideas and Technology by Robert Heinlein
  Tech news articles related to The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
  Tech news articles related to works by Robert Heinlein

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