Continued from Part II.
Despite her forthright statements, Mrs. Hobson was clearly out of sorts. No longer the calm composure – she fidgeted and avoided his gaze. He had gotten under her skin, but he had to find out what was at the centre of it all.
“Explain to me please,” he said, “the source of Prognosticant philosophy.”
“Am I a schoolchild?” she retorted. “You would have me recite?”
“You want a debate?” he said. “State your position.”
Her eyes narrowed, she shook her head slightly… and yet she began.
“It was a society in turmoil,” she said, speaking with the rapid, relaxed incantation of a well-memorised passage. “Financial crises, environmental destruction, mass unemployment, civil unrest, terrorism. One man, Dr. Haber, drew a parallel to sickness. Society is an organism, he said. We are all cells in one body. Specialised functions that operate in unison. That body was sick. Politics had failed. The answer was not reform, nor revolution, but medicine. The first step to effective medicine is prognosis.”
She was rising to the message now, the familiar themes bringing up memories of childhood. The Magistrate imagined her as a fourteen year old girl standing proudly next to her father as peace was imposed on a diseased country.
“Prognosis,” she continued. “Foresight. The prediction of outcomes based on data. The determination of appropriate action which must be based on total awareness of all information. So the Prognosticants came to be, controlled all knowledge and healed the sick society.”
The Magistrate applauded, slowly, loudly. “Society is an organism. That makes me the antibody. Do you know what that makes you? Your husband? Do you know what the Liberites are?” He leant forward, chin jutting, teeth bared. “The Liberites are cancer.”
To be continued…