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War Is Not Good For The Economy

August 6, 2017

I’ve written my last few posts about the military industrial complex and how many of our Congressmen have been convinced that spending vast amounts of money on the military is good for the economy.  In some very complicated ways, I suppose it can spur on innovation, but there are way better ways of going about developing technology and putting people to work.  Watch the video below.

It’s so bizarre to turn on a PBS documentary showing all the poor and downtrodden in the Great Depression all being miraculously saved by war of all things.  We see a big naval ship with aircraft buzzing around, cannons blazing, firing giant artillery at targets on the distant land ahead.  Then it next cuts to a crowd of workers cheering, “Hooray!”  Apparently that saved the day.  Big guns and blowing things up.  Hey everyone, listen up!  Are you broke?  Need work?  Step right up!  We need a lot of hands making giant guns, and we need even more hands to fire these guns at anyone who challenges the current power structure.  This is how we save the economy!

If that’s what the “economy” needs to function, we’re all doomed.  Let’s just follow this idea to its conclusion.  For one, every country will employ this idea to “stimulate” its economy, and as they watch their neighbors build up all kinds of dangerous weaponry next door, everyone will be scared out of their minds.  Next, the weapons will only get more and more powerful with time.  Finally, with everyone on edge, it’ll only take one incident to set the world ablaze.  Assuming we survive such an experiment, and I don’t think we will, after all is said and done, a victor will arise with a military whose strength is uncontested.  Whoever controls this military will be able to call all the shots and dictate whatever policies and rules it wants on everyone else.  This is total stupidity.

What sorts of scary weapons am I talking about.  We all know about atom bombs, but there’s worse to come.  We already have big brother spying on every aspect of our lives and that’s only going to get worse.  Microscopic cameras and microphones will be embedded everywhere, all feeding into giant super-computers with intelligent AI, monitoring anything and everything we do, at all times.  No privacy at all.  Is that a fly on the wall?  Nope, it’s a nano-drone, controlled by some government agent down in a underground bunker, spying on your every move, looking for dirt to blackmail you.  You’ll go to have sex with your girlfriend and someone will be watching you from a camera in your smart TV.  We’re pretty much already there.

They’ll have us all microchipped like dogs, tracking our every movement, and if we don’t comply they’ll cut off our ability to use money.  We’ll be helpless.  Robotic drones and armored terminator robots will be walking around, enforcing the will of whoever, without empathy or remorse.

What happens when we all have neural implants in our brains?  Everyone’s all excited that they don’t have to carry a phone anymore, so they just get technology implanted in their bodies.  Hooray, you can surf the web with your thoughts alone.  Sweet.  But uh oh, what happens when hackers take over your implants and hijack your physical body?  Your vision is blurred and some crazy sound plays over and over in your head on loop, threatening to never stop until you transfer all your money to some hacker.  Memories can be changed and erased.  Desires, emotions, and preferences can be manipulated by governments, tech companies, and hackers.  This stuff isn’t even that far away.  A few generations maybe?  If I had children (which I don’t), maybe my grandchildren?  Great grandchildren?  Either way, not that far off.

I can’t even imagine the far distant future.  I’m talking like hundreds of years in the future.  I can’t picture us making it there.  How could the environment possibly hold up?  With such dangerous weapons at everyone’s disposal, how could we prevent it from being misused?  I don’t know what the world looks like when money can buy you a new hyper-intelligent mind, a million times more powerful than an ordinary brain, and a super-human immortal body.  The haves will be an entirely different species from the have-nots.

I can’t imagine nanobot swarms which can intelligently be controlled.  Countless microscopic self-replicating robots, under the control of some AI or enhanced mind, working together to form shapes and objects, manipulating the environment and possibly attacking others.  I see the beginnings of this stuff and am taken back, wondering how we’re going to survive the future.

I can go on and on, but all I’m really saying is that we do NOT want the military to be the ones dictating the direction and development of our technology.  Honestly, I don’t want corporations in control of it either.  I don’t know how it all should be developed, but I’ll venture to say it should be more democratic and open, and in many areas development should be slowed down immensely so we can more deeply think about what we’re doing.  We don’t want advanced super-human AI to just be sprung on us out of nowhere, developed and perfected in secrecy, then unleashed on the world.  It starts taking over everything with who knows what goals and objectives. Am I too cynical?  Maybe.  But I don’t see any reason to believe the way we’re going now is anywhere I want to go.

Sorry.  I wish was more hopeful, but I’m not.  I don’t see any of this ending well.

Topics: Economics, Philosophy | No Comments »

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