I am Hari Seldon.
As you see, I am confined to this chair and cannot rise to greet you. Your grandparents left for Terminus a few months back in my time and since then I have suffered a rather incovenient paralysis. I can't see you, you know, so I can't greet you properly. I don't even know how many of you there are, so all this must be conducted informally. If any of you are standing, please sit down; if you care to smoke I woulon't mind. Why should I? I'm not really here.
It is fifty years now since this Foundation was established, -- fifty years in which the members of the Foundation have been ignorant of what it was they were working toward. It was necessary that they be ignorant, but now the necessity is gone.
The Encyclopedia Foundation, to begin with is a fraud, and always has been!
It is a fraud in the sense that neither I nor my colleages car at all whether a single volumen of the Encyclopedia is ever published. It has served its purpose since by it we extracted an imperial charter from the Emperor, by it we attracted the hundred thousand humans necessary for our scheme, and bu it we managed to keep them preoccupied while events shaped themselves, until it was too late for any of them to draw back.