What if the cure for coronavirus is worse than the disease? What if after COVID-19 we have COVID-21, COVID-35 and COVID-42? How will coronavirus change society, and the world? Read Corona Crime.
What if technological innovation was so all-transforming that it reversed the advance of civilisation?
It has happened before.
In recent centuries we’ve got used to the idea that technical innovations – the steam engine, electricity, air travel, antibiotics, contraception, the Internet – mean that “Things can only get better”.
I was originally thinking of calling the novel Coronatime
Tell that to the collapsing dregs of the Roman Empire. Or the Aztecs.
The image of people living in squalor amongst the ruins of magnificent, forgotten civilisations was a staple of romantic travellers in the 19th century.
But what causes the collapse of a civilisation?
Suppose it was not an outside shock – the Mongols, say – but a technological change?
Maybe it is happening already.
The invention of the new life exchange fluid Coronatime, at a stroke, removed the need for anyone to work by enabling them to sell their life expectancy to the highest bidder.
Poverty was eradicated overnight.
At first it seemed that, by transferring life expectancy from the least able to the most talented individuals, society would become more productive.
Not exactly. Coronatime involved no force. Less able members of society queued up to take hard cash for their surplus years – especially if a “termination contract” enabled them to enjoy said cash up front, in the prime of life.
Who would say no to that?
But what if the richest and most brilliant members of society found that without the spur of mortality to drive them on, their creative juices simply stopped flowing?
Civilisation starts gradually to decline, with shocking results.
Until one day, a humble Coronatime enforcement agent notices that something is wrong with the system.
You can begin reading Corona Crime by clicking on the link. Enjoy! And let me know what you think.