Refugees, Despair, Terrorism… Part two
Written on July 12, 2017
Part one of this title touched upon the negative effects of technology / automation. Here I would like to expand on my argument and try to show what I view is the biggest threat to our way of life, namely automation.
From the smart phones to the applications we like to install, all can collectively be classified as crowd controlling technologies. These apps track our movements, point out our location, what we buy, who we meet; the list is endless. The idea of the 1 percent against the 99 is being taken seriously here, and what better way of controlling the masses by making our necessity our consent? I do not believe for a second that just because I shut down my location control on my phone I will be invisible to everybody. Think of Chrome’s incognito mode, which people in the beginning took at face value. Yes my browsing history will be invisible to my girlfriend, but that’s just about it!!! I also believe investing in such technologies and making sure they work properly is in any government’s interest, considering the bleak future I see for us the common people. Today it is war and famine that is driving people from “poor” countries to Europe and the rest of the world seen as being better off. Tomorrow it will be automation which will turn people on each other’s throats for survival. We have seen how Europeans reacted in seemingly good times to having some foreigners around; what is it going to be like when opportunities are scarce and money is tight? There has to be a way of pin-pointing who is who on the map and technology has that covered whether we like it or not.
When governments talk about a standard living wage to cope with diminishing opportunities, it is not a sign of progress; it is in fact a sign of cluelessness. Just like when it was suggested somewhere (I don’t remember where) that a separate pedestrian street could be necessary for dead walkers, that is idiots who walk with their head stuck in their phone; not a sign of progress at all. Automation is going to do some irreparable damage to society. Africa and the mid-east will be the worst affected ones, adding more to the already inflated jobless number and refugee crises, but with automation, Europe (especially) is also under threat.
Automation will also yield another upper hand to any government. No one should entertain the idea of a common wage no matter how reasonable it sounds; it is easy to politicize this too. Imagine in regions like Africa, US, Middle East where there is a clear class distinction and discrimination based on race, religion, ethnicity…; what is going to keep any government from telling people that if they don’t play ball they won’t get their candy for this month? I see that happening. Here is a quote from Paul Weyrich, the co-founder of American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in 1980;
“They want everybody to vote. I don’t want everybody to vote. As a matter of fact our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populous goes down.”
Yes that was said by the co-founder of a group which has a huge influence in US law making, in a closed meeting, in the “land of the free”!!!
Of course only government economists know where the money is going to come from. Capitalism is a dead end street. So everything is automated, production is faster, safer, and all that bullshit, but who is going to buy all this stuff if people are out of work? Are we really going to afford that with our common wages? Is this the grand master plan of the future?
What about the kids of the future? Today it is painful for me to watch how the driverless car is being promoted as the next great leap towards freedom. We can play with our phones while “driving”, hurray!!! My view is technology is helping create a generation of morons who know no challenge in life. Studying for a driving license will be history. It used to be passing some milestone in life. It is how we learn responsibility. Our ability to use our brain is constantly being undermined, and chips installed in our brains will never be the answer. For what purpose unless to control the masses? How are kids going to respond when asked about what they want to be when they grow up — “I want to monitor a robot do heart surgery”, or “monitor a robot fly a plane”, or “monitor students interact with their robot teacher”? In time this word, monitor, will be replaced by something with more grandeur possibly an acronym that will make it sound whatever we are supposed to do a bit important. Now I can imagine some saying this approach will free us to concentrate on the more important things, but I cannot see how being driven to “work” where most of the environment has been automated, where decision making is influenced by a set of algorithms could possibly be considered a challenge. In time there is a good chance that people will lose faith in their purpose, as if it has not started happening, leading to a population of sheep which can easily be led to the slaughter.
On ted talk one so-called engineer presented robots to replace construction workers. And then what??? Shouldn’t we have a contingency plan after such an enormous leap towards a new end? But nobody seems interested in this latter plan, instead the answer to that is more technology to control the ‘would be revolting’ public. Like in the US, more guns to control gun violence. In Europe or Asia if a certain medicine turns out to have more side effects than its intended benefits it will be pulled out of the market; production will even cease to protect the public. The same should be applied to technology, especially automation. Who are the beneficiaries here? I cannot see how the wider public could benefit from automated checkout stores, robot waiters, robot surgeons or pilotless planes. Yes there is always the pretext of protecting us from terrorism, faster and safer production / output…, but we are beating the wrong bush here. Most of the pretext leans towards terrorism and our protection, but let’s see where this terrorism goes if the west tries and changes its foreign policy. Let’s see what will happen if all those American bases and missile defense systems were not there and dialog instead takes place to sort out problems. Terrorists like the US government, the Israeli military base (it is NOT a state, sorry), will never agree to this, but let’s give this line of thought a try and see how things turn out to be.