CLAIR WILLIAM HARMONY – THE CHECK – 2015
As a thriller it is rather simple
and we know from the start it will end up alright, and it does. As a
“detective” story it is also simple since it is all a question of firing power
and we know where superiority at that level is, so there is no surprise either.
It is more interesting to know
who and what is doing what is happening to a simple mailman, who does not
always ring only twice, or postman if you prefer, who is not Pat. We know there
is one person behind and one person who is paying some debt to that ex-marine
with a golden star medal or something like that under his post office uniform.
But how is it done and what kind of machinery is behind it all? In fact the
answer at the end of the book is rather sketchy.
But most of all this book is
science fiction, not political science fiction, but social and financial
science fiction. Imagine all the money that is being laundered by banks totally
seized and channeled to good actions and people in need. Simple you may say,
but why isn’t it done if it is that simple? Robin Hood not dead, for sure, but
why not have a few of these Robin Hoods in today’s world? No answer in the
galleries, of course not, because there is no answer because money is no longer
paper money or metal money. Money today is purely electronic money, virtual
money. It has no color, no smell and no taste. It only exists in computers and
in the cloud, the famous cloud. So why not funnel all the dirty money into
worthy causes and to worthy people? Just a few clicks and there you are. There
must be higher reasons to prevent that kind of robbery. The book has its answer
but it might be slightly more complex.
And yet that’s the idea of this
author, a very vicious, sadistic and perverse idea indeed. Let’s program some
computers so that a virtual redistributing machine is invented and works all by
itself on its own mechanical artificial intelligence and manages to take dirty
money wherever it is and to distribute it to the people who need it according
to the big data processing this virtual machine is able to do on the Internet
to know who needs what and how much. It all starts with a hamster, though it
could have been a parakeet, and ends
with a puppy, so charming and so sweet, and in-between hundreds of people were
killed and trillions of dollars were re-ventilated into millions of bank
accounts. That’s absolute mental ecology, perfect and pure ecology of the mind.
This science fiction does not
hurt too much after all except that imagining a machine that can on its own
intelligence manage humanity is a myth that could come from the rather
deficient mind of Ray Kurzweil, but it forgets fundamental elements.
The human factor: no machine can replace that
human factor, the hugging with love and friendship, the crying and weeping with
sadness and unhappiness and distress, the howling and screaming and shouting
with suffering and trauma and pain and agony. No machine can even imagine such
emotions and sensations, let alone experience them, and they cannot be programmed
because they are absolutely unique to each person and each moment.
The cultural factor, and in particular the
religious or philosophical side of things, that can lead to both cooperation
and hostility because culture is an identifying element for every single
individual who is necessarily identifying themselves with one particular group
rather than another. And language is part of that culture and no machine will
never be able to use articulated language the way we do in conversation, in
poetry, in literature, in research, and even in dreams, first of all because
that was an invention of humanity as an animal species.
The need for competition among human beings to
have anything looking like progress or development. No human being does
anything without the simple motivation of getting better results, improving
one’s own life and the life of one’s close associates, or getting rewarded in a
way or another with fame, money or authority also called power. Take that off
and we do not have a human society any more: we can imagine a society entirely
controlled, organized and managed by machines, but then it no longer is a human
So the story is nicely romantic
but it is a bed time story for mid-teenagers with just enough female innuendo
to satisfy the impulses of males in that age bracket. They might get some
dreams out of it, but rather wet dreams than nightmares, though you should not
forget mares are female horses after all and the readers are potential.stallions.
Dr Jacques COULARDEAU