KMO has turned Peak Oil apostate. Information technology and machine learning in particular, seem to have played a much more influential and interesting role in determining the course of industrial civilization over the past decade than have shortfalls in petroleum production. In short, the predictions of a Peak Oil fast collapse have failed to materialize. Over that same period, most everyone in the industrialized world has taken to carrying powerful computers around with them that fit in the palms of their hands. Governments and corporations use the data we generate with our online activity for surveillance and social control. What will the coming decade hold? Will the collapse of industrial civilization finally make its entrance, or will information technology extend it's lead over the predicted collapse? KMO puts these questions to long-time C-Realm guest, James Howard Kunstler, who predicts that the collapse is still coming, and that the next couple of years will be marked by greatly increased levels of disorder on the international stage.
In this solo episode, KMO reads some feedback from thoughtful listeners, including a long piece from the author of The Hipcrime Vocab blog about Modern Monetary Theory and inflation. Thereafter it's all AI all the time. What is Alexa doing to us? What will be the long term ramifications of AlphaGo beating a Chinese Go champion and providing the Chinese Communist Party with its AI Sputnik moment? How will AI assistants play our emotions?
KMO talks with long-time friend of the C-Realm, Kevin D. Kevin lives in Pittsburgh very near the Tree of Life Synagogue, so you can probably guess where the conversation STARTS. From there it widens to include many regular C-Realm topics like AI and it's effects on the capitalist arrangement of society. Two books that KMO has read/listened to recently, Red Moon by Kim Stanley Robinson and 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari figure prominently in the latter half of the conversation.
KMO is packing up to fly to LA for Politicon 2018. It's likely to be the scene of street battles between Antifa and Proud Boys; a glorious spectacle of ideologically-induced insanity. And stuff about AI, UBI, and figuring out whether the purpose of civilization is to create the conditions for the virtuous to make a fortune or to help all humans live decent lives.
KMO responds to listener feedback about the contemporary parenting scene before returning to the topic of AI, procedurally-generated pornography, and sex robots.