Thank you for upping this thread, Lord Balto; a beautifully distilled example of Hugh's Apophenia Inquisition. Surely, some consideration has to be given to the fact that CIA internal forecasting cabals and R&D outfits were gazing up precisely the same terrain
as any contemporary science fiction authors. Hugh also omits doing any research to locate a common inspiration
for these two projects.
Nonetheless, this stands as a remarkably strange "hit" -- typical of KWH material. Let's start with this Fortean Times article, concerning Philip K Dick, intelligence agencies, and the deliberate insertion of memetic material into science fiction novels at the behest of shadowy secret agents
....Via: http://www.forteantimes.com/features/ar ... rcon6.html
Undoubtedly, one of the prime reasons why Dick attracted attention from the FBI was a series of bizarre letters he penned to the Bureau in the early 1970s, in which he described his personal knowledge of an alleged underground Nazi cabal that was attempting to covertly manipulate science fiction writers to further advance its hidden cause.
And the nature of that cause was even more bizarre: to initiate a Third World War by infecting the American population with syphilis. On 28 October 1972, Dick wrote to the FBI and outlined his distinctly odd beliefs:
“I am a well-known author of science fiction novels, one of which dealt with Nazi Germany (called MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE, it described an ‘alternate world’ in which the Germans and Japanese won World War Two and jointly occupied the United States).
“This novel, published in 1962 by Putnam and Co., won the Hugo Award for Best Novel of the Year and hence was widely read both here and abroad; for example, a Japanese edition printed in Tokyo ran into several editions. I bring this to your attention because several months ago I was approached by an individual who I have reason to believe belonged to a covert organization involved in politics, illegal weapons, etc., who put great pressure on me to place coded information in future novels ‘to be read by the right people here and there’, as he phrased it. I refused to do this.”
Dick then elaborated on his unusual theories:
“The reason why I am contacting you about this now is that it now appears that other science fiction writers may have been so approached by other members of this obviously Anti-American organization and may have yielded to the threats and deceitful statements such as were used on me. Therefore I would like to give you any and all information and help I can regarding this, and I ask that your nearest office contact me as soon as possible.
“I stress the urgency of this because within the last three days I have come across a well-distributed science fiction novel which contains in essence the vital material which this individual confronted with me as the basis for encoding. That novel is CAMP CONCENTRATION by Thomas Disch, which was published by Doubleday & Co.
“P.S. I would like to add: what alarms me the most is that this covert organization which approached me may be Neo-Nazi, although it did not identify itself as being such. My novels are extremely anti-Nazi. I heard only one code identification by this individual: Solarcon-6.”
Were sinister, ultra-right-wing figures really attempting to infiltrate the world of SF as part of some greater, and highly sinister, conspiracy designed to bolster their political aims and ideologies?
Dick appeared to be on a crusade as he sought to reveal his data to FBI agents. Moreover, declassified FBI records show that, only days later, Dick contacted an Inspector Shine in the Marin County Sheriff’s Office, San Rafael, California, to whom he imparted further details of the alleged Nazi/SF plot:
“As you may recall, on or about November 17, 1971, my house at 707 Hacienda Way, Santa Venetia, was extensively robbed. The last time I talked to you, during February of this year, you informed me that you had broken the case; a man named Wade (Jerry Wade I believe) had been arrested with the Ruger .22 pistol of mine stolen during this robbery. I have been in Canada and now in Southern California and hence out of touch. Have any more of my possessions been recovered? Do you have anything more you can tell me at this date?
“While I was in Canada, evidently my house was robbed again, during March of this year. I did not know this until what remained of my things arrived down here; my realtor, Mrs Annie Reagan, had stored them and at least one entire room of stuff is missing; the bedroom in which the control system of the burglar alarm was located, the one room not covered by the scanner. Obviously it was robbed by someone who intimately knew the layout of the alarm system and how to bypass it. I recall that Inspector Bridges thought that the November 17 robbery was an inside job, at least in part. I believe that this later robbery in March of this year proves it.”
Dick had his theories about who was behind the robberies and what their motivations were:
“Only two or three persons that I can recall knew the layout of the burglar alarm system. One was Harold Kinchen, who was under investigation by Air Force Intelligence at Hamilton Field at the time I left (Mr Richard Bader was conducting the investigation; through Sergeant Keaton of Tiberon, he asked me to come in and give testimony. It had to do with an attempt on the arsenal of the Air Force Intelligence people at Hamilton on I recall January first of this year).
“I have more reason to believe now than I did then that Kinchen and the secret extralegal organization to which he belonged were involved in both robberies of my house, although evidence seemed to point more toward Panthers such as Wade. I say this because this is Orange County where I live now, and I have come to know something about the rightwing paramilitary Minutemen illegal people here – they tell me confidentially that from my description of events surrounding the November robbery of my house, the methods used, the activities of Harry Kinchen in particular, it sounds to them like their counterparts up there, and possibly even a neo-Nazi group.
“Recently, I’ve obtained, by accident, new information about Kinchen’s associates, and the neo-Nazi organization theory does seem reinforced. In this case, the November robbery was political in nature and more than a robbery. I have thought this for some time, but until now had less reason to be sure.
“As to the motive of the assault, I’m not sure at all. Possibly it had to do with my published novels, one of which dealt with Nazi Germany – it was extremely anti-Nazi, and widely circulated. I know for a fact that Harry Kinchen and the Japanese relatives he had through his wife Susan had read it. Kinchen’s Japanese-born mother-in-law, Mrs Toni Adams, had read the novel in the Japanese edition.
“Beyond any doubt, Kinchen is an ardent Nazi trained in such skills as weapons-use, explosives, wire-tapping, chemistry, psychology, toxins and poisons, electronics, auto repair, sabotage, the manufacture of narcotics. Mr Bader is of course aware of this. What I did not pass on to anyone, because I feared for my life, is the fact that Kinchen put coercive pressure, both physical and psychological, on me to put secret coded information into my future published writings, ‘to be read by the right people here and there’, as he put it, meaning members of his subversive organization.
“As I told you last November, he accidentally responded to a phone call from me with a code signal. Later he admitted to belonging to a secret ‘worldwide’ organization and told me some details.”
Then, if such a thing were possible, Dick’s story got even weirder:
“The coded information which Kinchen wished placed in my novels (I of course refused, and fled to Canada) had to do with an alleged new strain of syphilis sweeping the US, kept top secret by the US authorities; it can’t be cured, destroys the brain, and is swift-acting. The disease, Kinchen claimed, is being brought in deliberately from Asia by agents of the enemy (unspecified), and is in fact a weapon of World War Three, which has begun, being used against us.
“In a recent confidential discussion I had with my Paris editor, a close friend of mine, this editor ratified my conviction that to allow this coded ‘information’, undoubtedly spurious, to get into print, would be a disaster for this country. These neo-Nazis or whatever they are would ‘break’ their own code and make public this phoney information, this creating mass hysteria and panic.
“There is, of course, no such new untreatable paresis, despite rumours we have been hearing from Servicemen returning from Viet Nam. I have contacted the FBI on the advice of my editor-publisher friend, but I felt I should contact you, too. You may wish to pass this information about the coded information in novels onto Mr Bader.”
In a postcript, Dick concluded: “Harold Kinchen introduced me to only one individual, who asked me to write for his underground pornographic publications; I refused. By accident, I recently learned that this man, ‘Doc’ Stanley of Corte Madera, ‘was a student of the speeches of Hitler during his college days at the University of Chicago, advocating their doctrines and reading them to people’. Neither Stanley or Kinchen mentioned this to me.”
The similarity of names is itself remarkable: Solarcon-6, Simulacron-3.
Still, so as not to keep anyone guessing, I am guessing the primary common inspiration involved behind Hugh's KMW OP is the work of Vannevar Bush and Norbert Weiner in computer networking and cybernetics during the 1950's.
Also, "Camp Concentration" is a really excellent sci-fi novel.