Tag Archives: medicine



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I have great respect for the police. They are called upon to do unbelievable tasks, sometimes so despicable, that if it were you or me, we would run the other way as fast as we can.

But they don’t. They stand their ground to try to maintain civility in a restless, rebellious world.  Everyday, they put their lives on the line so we can exist in relative safety. I can’t image what our society would be like without them.

As a kid growing up in the rough neighborhoods of the Bronx, if I got into trouble, that’s who I was told to run to – the police. And they were around walking the beat. They were visible, available.

What’s happened to my friends, the police? Today, in every town or city, large or small, they have turned into an unfamiliar army. In the beginning it was sticks. Then tasers and pepper spray. Now they have graduated to obtaining military equipment, like tanks, riot gear, and drones.

And in Massachusetts the SWAT teams reportedly claim they’re private corporations, immune from open records laws.

What’s next?
Will this be our future police force in action?

TheOrganHarvestersBette COVER
George Potek studied his action-ready CAPO (Corporit Aims Protection Organization) marshals standing at attention. They were here for a pick-up.
Should have stayed in the office. Have a shit-load of paperwork to do.
But he couldn’t help it. He wanted to be here, liked being in the field, in the thick of things. And he believed in a hands-on approach to leadership even though he hated the pickups. . They were usually the screamers — always made his nerves stand on end
He eyed his marshals again. Everything from the tops of their helmets to their heavy boots was up to specifications. This was his elite group of officers and he was damn proud of them.
He had to stay vigilant. It hadn’t been easy for his CAPOs to become number one in the Tri State Area. And maintaining that status would be even harder. Other smaller security corporations kept trying to nip away at their leadership.
Security. Antiterrorism. Profit.
So far the CAPOs were way in the lead. No one was even a close second when it came to security. In fact, if anything, the competition had been falling by the wayside like dead flies.
Potek sensed the CAPO marshals growing restless. They had their tasers holstered, but their Sydarms 10mms were held at the ready and the group had formed a tight circular defensive position.
From the moment they’d arrived at the apartment complex, the handful of people walking down the street had vanished, almost in the blink of an eye. It always amazed him that the CAPOs had that instant effect on the good citizens of Sanfrancorp. The observation never failed to bring a rush of pleasure as he watched everyone move out of their way, fear etched on their faces. That kind of power had to be addictive, because he never got enough of it.
All eyes were riveted on Potek. He finally signaled the marshals to enter the apartment complex.
“Keep those goddam tasers in your holsters and your guns on safety unless I tell you otherwise,” he ordered. He did a close-up inspection of each of their red Zynec jumpsuits and shiny Polytek helmets as they marched past him.
When they entered the building, two tenants about to leave turned quickly and ran back down the long hallway, hissing a nervous warning:  “CAPOs!  CAPOs!”
The marshals and Potek, squeezed into a large, square vaculift and shot upward nonstop to the nineteenth floor.  Their footsteps clacked a hollow echo on the ebonite floor. They walked quickly toward Zoe Hidalga’s apartment. Potek expected to catch her before she left for work.
Poor planning, and poor PR to nab her at her job. Her colleagues would become uneasy. Make them think of the “D” word.
“Doctor Hidalga!” the commander shouted, pounding on the thin door.  “Commander Potek from Corporit!  Open up!  Open up now!”
When there was no immediate response, he banged on the door again and looked up and down the empty corridor.  He turned to a female marshal standing next to him.
“We never seem to draw a crowd, do we?” He checked his watch and waited exactly sixty seconds.
“Open the door, Doctor Hidalga!”
Without waiting for a response, he unlocked the door with a passkey, indicating that the marshals should fire on contact. Each marshal released the safety on his weapon. She’d had her chance to do this peacefully.  Potek stepped aside as they rushed into the apartment.
“She’s gone!” one shouted.
“Damn it!” Potek said, entering the small, cramped living quarters.  He was disgusted at having to spend more time finding the woman. This kind of thing always made him look incompetent, especially when the pickup should have been a piece of cake. He looked around, gruffly ordered:
“Strip it!  You know the procedure.”
He stomped out, leaving the follow-up details to his marshals.  In less than an hour they would empty the apartment, leaving behind no sign of Zoe Hidalga.


Winner of the 2014 Stellar Sci-fi Contest For Science Fiction Dystopian Novel
The war of 2020 was quite bloodless, but its aftermath was plenty grisly. The victor? A monster corporation now wasting the planet’s resources with abandon — but controlling the people with precision. Using industrial-scale organ harvesting. Using wholesale euthanasia. Using squadrons of armed guards whose bulletproof visors hide any expression in their eyes. In this heartless technocratic dystopian future, normal emotions constitute treason. Acting on them is a capital crime. Can a mother’s passion defy this totalitarian system?

“Must-Read Dystopian Thriller.”




Truly Stellar Science Fiction!

Assent Publishing

Assent Publishing’s Farther Books imprint is thrilled to announce the winners of the 2014 STELLAR SCI-FI Contest. We travelled through worlds throughout the galaxy and enjoyed every minute of the ride. Along the way we encountered worlds beyond earthly description, technologies that awe, and brave characters that overcame seemingly insurmountable circumstances. Against still talent competition, two tales rose to the surface as we chose the winners of the Farther Books Stellar Sci-Fi contest.


AuthorPicBetteGoldenLambOur GRAND PRIZE WINNER is author Bette Golden Lamb with her deliciously disturbing dive into a dark dystopia fraught with medical mayhem in Rx Deferred. The Corporate-Government wars of 2020 have resulted in a Corporit dictatorship. Its legacy? Escalating climate change, limited food supplies, and clean air only for the elite.

Bette Golden Lamb is an RN, three-dimensional artist,AntiBody and writer. She claims to need all of these disciplines to stay out of…

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Pic I Am For blog

My Diary

Lucy Alden
June 15, 2025

I Don’t Want To Do It!

My boyfriend said The Corporate-Government wars of 2020 have resulted in a global corporate dictatorship. Its legacy? Escalating climate changes, limited food supplies, and clean air only for the elite.

Those are his exact words, the ones he used before he disappeared a month ago. I’ve been trying to find out what happened to him, but there’s nowhere I can turn for real information. No one will tell me anything. It’s like he never existed.

When the corporate changeover came, I’d just finished nurses training. I was so excited. I was finally going to take care of patients. I love taking care of people, helping them in any way I can. Just about everyone appreciates nurses and the care they give. But these days, all I see are the results of food rationing and the assaults of climate disruptions everywhere.

Everyone is talking about loss — lost family members, lost loved ones.

In the past five years, things have gotten even worse, and the last two weeks, for me – well, it’s really been horrible.

I don’t know what to do.
They abruptly stopped the nurses from taking care of people. Androids now do all of our jobs – every single one.

I’ve been sent to the Pulmonary Department where I see first hand the results of unscrubbed air. It’s destroying everyone’s lungs across the planet.

What I’ve learned:

The disease rate is rising much quicker than they can fight it by enclosing the city in the protective domes they’ve designed to try to keep out the polluted air.

Men, women, children all over the planet simply can’t breathe without gasping. . Some can’t even take a single breath.

Now, there are the dying ones. That’s why I’m here in Pulmonary.
My unit team leader came to me this morning and without a word put a black card on my desk.

My heart raced and I thought I would throw up. She didn’t have to say anything, and she didn’t. I knew it was coming and I knew what it was for. I was the last one on my nursing team who hadn’t taken her turn at killing a sick patient.

They, the managers, insist it’s euthanasia – a good death. We’re doing the patients a favor. That’s what they say. But they’re not the ones who have to look in the eyes of a child who knows you’re there to murder him.

My friend, Abby, said she had to chase a woman who tried to run away before she could be injected. Everyone in the unit stood still. They waited until the patient couldn’t breathe from the exertion, then she collapsed before she could crash through the door and run away.

I don’t want to do it, no matter how painless it is. I don’t want to plunge that death drug into anyone’s veins.

I want to say no.

But I’ve seen what happens to other nurses who say no. One nurse even tore the black card into tiny pieces and threw it at the team leader.
And then that nurse was gone. Disappeared. Just like my boyfriend.

There are rumors about how they kill the objectors. It’s said they take them to a special lab and strip away all their organs and use them to save corporate leaders.

Is that the truth? Could that be possible?

The team leader is walking my way, bringing the medication I’m supposed to use. It’s already drawn up into a large syringe.

I look into her eyes — gray stony eyes of determination. There’s no compassion, no understanding …

“Here,” she says.

“I won’t do it.” My heart is tearing at my chest. I hand her the torn black card.
She nods at someone behind me and before I can turn, a hood drops over my head.

“Let me go.” I scream as loud as I can.

There’s a stabbing in my arm and as my head spins, I think of my lost boyfriend, my lost love.     Diary Entry Confiscated – June 15, 2025


Coming soon: Rx DEFERRED.
Corporate-Government wars of 2020 have resulted in a global corporate dictatorship. Its legacy? Escalating climate changes, limited food supplies, and clean air only for the elite.




I think you’ll agree doctors and nurses are really special people. You trust them with your body, share your hopes and dreams with them, even tell them dark secrets you wouldn’t dare to tell your spouse or lover, mother or father. These unique people sit with you in the dead of night while you whisper, making sure no one else can hear. In return, they respond with a different language. They squeeze your hands tighter and tighter and seem to always know what you need, what you want, just as though you were screaming it from the rooftops.
Keep me alive; give me one more day, one more hour. That’s what you want. You want them to stave off the angel of death, make him go away.
Please. Your eyes beg as you watch your world close in on you. Please give me more time … only a few minutes … only a second more.
Forget the bravado. We all know what I’m saying is true.
And yet, we take medical people, those doctors and nurses, for granted, even as they’re trying to save us.
Why do they keep doing it?
It complicated, yet simple at the same time. It’s because that’s who they are, it’s what they chose to do, to be. It’s a calling, a need to save, to have impact. And that’s what they do — they impact your future, your life.
If you were injured or hurt and you were screaming for help, most people would look away, even run in the opposite direction. They’d need to get away from the sight of your splattering blood or the shards of your fractured bones, or your painful struggle to take in that final breath.
Who stays? Who stands their ground with you until the end?
Doctors, nurses, EMTs. Those are the people who dive in to save you.
Now close your eyes and imagine those doctors and nurses disappearing from our busy, thriving cities, our spreading suburbs. What does the healthcare landscape look like then?
Will the speed of changing technology make our future change ever faster and faster? I think by mid century probably most doctors will be clustered behind desks, taking orders from superiors whose bottom lines have nothing to do with your health as an individual. Those people in power, the ones who always get the best of care, will direct the doctors of tomorrow on how your dying organs, or your debilitating illness, will be treated, if at all.
Patient care?
That will be carried out by technicians trained to follow orders without a second thought. Without question.
Do I mean technicians like the ones who work at virtual labs?
Will they even be human?
Think again about the doctor whose shoulder you cry on, helping you through every step of a difficult procedure, or the nurse who’s by your side while your body does unspeakable things to you. What about those people in the future?
Color them gone. They won’t be there. They’ll have morphed into a different kind of caretaker.
Am I saying robots?
Well, they won’t be metal clunkers. Those things you see in movie fantasies.
No, no, no. After all, we are a humane society, aren’t we? Future caretakers will at least look like people, talk like people, and even try to pat you on the shoulder … like people. But that touch won’t feel quite right because nothing can take the place of someone’s arm around you, holding you with compassion.
Welcome to a new world – tomorrow’s world. A dystopian world where individuality is not appreciated.
And what if you rebel? Continue to think like an individual?
What do you think they’ll do to you?