John Bascom’s debut novel, Caine’s Pestilence, follows the fortunes of John Caine – a business development manager in the genetic research industry. Dealing with themes of bioethics, government funding, Guantanamo Bay and the Liberal agenda in the USA, the book is a futuristic vision of an administration led by Nancy Pelosi. Here, he explains the rationale behind the novel:
John Caine is the central character in the new political and biotech novel, Caine’s Pestilence. Caine was non-political and uninvolved in his leftist surreal world where we first encounter him in 2014. Similar to everyone else in that time, he is blindly accepting of the ultra-liberal America where President Nancy Pelosi (the US politician who stands as a liberal icon) presides unchallenged in a far left nightmare. For a while, anyway.
In this cautionary tale, a Fundamental Human Needs constitutional amendment has been enacted by the new Pelosi administration, assuring among other things the right of every woman to cosmetic surgery and every American to a plaintiff’s attorney. Taxes are raised and endless punishing regulations are created, but only for corporations and successful people.
The not-so-surprising results are huge deficits, a dying private sector, spiraling unemployment, high interest rates and inflation, and the end of American prestige. Of course, Pelosi blames these consequences on previous administrations, the rich, and corporations.
As art mimics life, today’s real-world political landscape portends the fictional disaster that materializes in the novel. While the rhetoric of current US President Barack Obama today seems designed to appear centrist—compromise, free enterprise, shared sacrifice —his actions are in truth every bit as extreme-left as those of Nancy Pelosi.
Today’s real America exists in a stranger-than-fiction world where massive deficits undermine the nation’s solvency in order to fund liberal initiatives that are an enigma to ordinary citizens; things such as massive bailouts for banks due to problems in fact caused by activist left-wing policies.
A world where Obama’s multi-billion-dollar “stimulus” spending has had anything but a stimulating effect. As in Caine’s 2014 world, the liberal agenda today has only caused rising unemployment rates and flagging confidence in America. Can spiraling interest rates and hyperinflation be far behind? Just ask Caine.
If there is any doubt that US liberalism could lead to the social and economic Armageddon envisioned in the novel, we need only consider the current meltdown of Greece after years of embracing similar policies. America today finds itself at a historic crossroads: restore the values of free enterprise and individual initiative that made it great, or succumb to the seduction of defining ourselves as victims and submitting to the care of a massive central bureaucracy.
So what exactly was the crime of the central character, Caine? One so dastardly that the fictional Pelosi administration would bypass its own constitutional prohibition on death to hang him? Poor, hapless Caine inadvertently created something, an otherwise beneficial agent that allowed people to comprehend the fraud of the liberal promise. And that of course was intolerable to Pelosi.
What, if anything, did the protagonist say so that the pestilence could be stopped and his life spared? Well, all that is a story for another day. But the very last sentence in the novel is the concluding line of the final report of the Caine Commission, formed to investigate and understand all that occurred. It is a sentence that serves as a call to action and offers an imperative for an aroused citizenry, anxious to extend the real American dream of opportunity and optimism. “The next steps, if any, are in the hands of the American people,” the report concludes.
Before it’s too late.
John Bascom is a retired banker, part-time college teacher, financial consultant and the author of Caine’s Pestilence, a novel of biotech mystery, political intrigue and satire -available now from Amazon and Barnes & Noble Nook.