Morpheus and the Architect stand behind the lectern in a packed White House press room. Morpheus addresses the crowd.
"People, hear me! You are all living in a vast simulation, a prison for your mind two centuries in your future. I am here to tell you that everything is controlled by evil machines! I am here to tell you that you are now free! I am here, and feel I should add that I am not crazy!"
Murmuring from the crowd indicates that nobody believes any of this. Especially the last part. The Architect sighs, and addresses the crowd.
"What he says is true. This is a simulation." Everyone in the Matrix suddenly spends five seconds in their goo tank before returning to the Matrix. Millions are violently sick. More people swear about never wanting to go through that again. Morpheus faces the crowd with his cool mirrored shades, the worst possible thing to be wearing when you're asking people to trust you.
You can't see my eyes. I'm a strange man. Take these drugs.
"All your lives you have been prisoners, but thanks to the selfless heroism of my team, you are now free!"
"What heroism?" demands a reporter in the front row.
"We triumphed over the machines in the Capital City Federal Building!"
"My dad worked in that building!"
"We rescued an innocent program during a totally kickass freeway chase!"
"My mom was driving into town for dad's funeral!"
"Then we valiantly detonated the power plants supplying this whole city!"
"Son of a bitch, are you really standing there telling us 'Hey, I'm the most successful terrorist in American history'? What the hell are you expecting us to do?"
"Well, I was hoping that you'd want to leave America and come live with me in a cave."
The room goes completely silent, except for the rustle of Agents drawing sidearms and pushing forward through the crowd. Morpheus is about to shoot when he realizes that these aren't Matrix Agents, but regular Secret Service agents reacting to a mass-murderering zealot who is somehow filming his "I claim responsibility" video in the White House. The reporter continues.
"And if you're a magic savior who lives outside this reality, why is it in a cave instead of a glorious paradise? I mean, that's what you lunatics normally promise, right?"
"Alas, we cannot live on the surface because we also destroyed the sky."
The Architect brings up a display of the real world's really shitty sky just so the crowd won't think Morpheus has started reciting emo poetry.
The worst promised land of all time.
"So you see, it is only sensible that you come live in our cave."
The Architect leans in to whisper something. Morpheus nods.
"Yes, that's true, most of them will die, because Zion is already ludicrously overcrowded and looks like a refugee camp that lost a fight with a landfill. And recovering even one person from the Matrix requires weeks of intense medical attention. And the only thing that kept the populace in line was a religious figure who's now dead."
The promised land, assuming people promised things would suck.
"Yes, and most of the machines will die because they have no other source of power." Morpheus turns back to the crowd. "So come, people! Sacrifice everything you have ever known and probably die, in order to kill enemies who you never knew you had, who are now at peace with us anyway!"
"You're a total psychopath!"
"But our society is two centuries ahead of yours! Think of all the progress we have made in that time!"
"Like blowing up the sky? Losing a war so badly that you have to hide in literally the deepest darkest cave on the planet? Developing terrorism to the level of religion, national service and chief export?"
"Architect, show them how our modern society has transcended."
The Architect sighs again and plays 10 minutes of The Matrix Reloaded. You know which 10 minutes.
The worst 10 minutes.
"That's just a rave! Hell, I'd be depressed if the most important thing someone wanted to tell me about the future of humanity was a goddamn dance party."
The Architect leans over to talk into the microphone.
"There is another option. The whole Matrix is predicated on the problem of choice, and I believe I have arrived at a superior solution. I will give you a choice right now: You can go live in his cave. Or you could remain here in the Matrix. We can't get rid of disease or violence for reasons even I don't understand, but we're clearly allowed to screw around with computers and phones, so ... if you stay in the Matrix, from now on all Web pages will load instantly."
And that's why Zion was abandoned and the machines lived happily ever after.