Why The Computer Spying?

Question: Why do we have to have that computer spying on everything?

Answer: Anyone who has read the first 3-5 chapters in Invisible Hand is well aware that the computer system in the novel sees and hears everything that everyone does, even in the bedroom. The computer system also keeps track of everyone’s money and what they did to earn it. Each person’s reputation is also maintained by the same computer system. As you can easily imagine that is a huge concentration of power in one central system. It almost demands that the people in charge of such a system take advantage of that information to the detriment of everyone else. It is a super-totalitarian government that would be almost impossible to rebel against. Big Brother would be right at home with such a system.

I believe that the computer spying or at least computer observation is coming no matter what. That is, I included such a computer system in the novel because the computer will become more and more capable of seeing and hearing in more and more places no matter what we do unless we give up the use of electricity altogether. Now the only question is how will that computer system be used? We know how it will be used in every nation of the world as things now stand. Can you really believe that any present-day government would not use that system to monitor their "enemies"? Would any U.S. campaign for the Presidency ever be fair when the current President could monitor everything the other party was doing all the time? Would those who oppose some government policy be able to express that disagreement without fear of reprisal in ways that could not be foreseen or resisted?

So what I am suggesting is that by changing the nature of our money we can create a context in which the computer observation would be relatively safe. In fact, in which the observation would protect us and provide help when we needed it. The programming of computers can hide information as well as make it public. The software that makes our computers so useful can be made to safeguard our privacy from human observation. Who cares if a camera is watching if no human being will ever be able to see what that camera is recording? You might as well have a cat watching and listening.

With the non-POM everyone who is involved with the computer system will have a selfish and greedy motive to protect everyone’s privacy. They will be rewarded for keeping private matters private. They will get paid for protecting files from hackers. Since the computer will be watching those who write the programs and who maintain the physical computers it will be almost impossible for them to pry without being caught right away. Therefore, the temptation to access information that is none of their business will be very small and easy to resist.

In short, every bit of information the computer collects will be used, if at all, to help you and to make your life better with a non-POM economy. Can you imagine how bad things would be for the Payers if that were not so? The Payers will have to be very sensitive to abuse of the computer system because their own happiness and even safety depends on preventing such abuse.

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