A World Without Choice

In the dawn of this new age, there will be a tradeoff. A balance of choice and destiny will be broken. Soon man will not choose his career, lover, the coffee he drinks, who he kills, what he eats, anything you can think of or imagine. It will be a civilization in which the human brain is unlocked and our pleasures, tastes, and behaviors can all be predicted, monitored, and controlled. Does that scare you? If it does sadly that is the path humanity is moving towards. In the coming era of predictive algorithms what you believe and perceive to be true will not be. It will be customized and catered to your image and preference. People are complex but not so complex that it cannot be dissected like a science at a superficial level. Interpersonal skills that are developed naturally through family and friends will be replaced by this entity of Techno-Fascism. Humanity will not understand what love is because the world will be devoid of pain. There will be only ‘be’. The idea of existence. Breathing without meaning. The lion in the cage. An animal who once ruled with an iron fist now demoted to idling sitting in his cage. The cage for mankind will be so immersive that their reality will become blurred with the virtual. What is more poetic is that unlike the lion we will design and create our own cage. Humanity will be willing enablers of their own enslavement.

Techno-Fascism

Internet slaves.

The advent of the technological age will bring great wonders to our world. With it will arrive a force so powerful it will fundamentally change human existence. It will be marked by one historical alternating paradigm shift: The destruction of human nature. The genetic code of the human species will be written, and the history of the mammal will forever be changed. A dark abyss will slowly take hold and envelop everything in its wake. There will be neither life nor death but instead culture and civilization will be driven by a single force: Techno-Fascism. An energy so powerful mankind will merely submit and obey. Obey like the animal he is. From the ashes of previous civilizations will rise something anew. A monster that will destroy everything you currently comprehend as art, philosophy, and nature. It is not a being or object but an entity. An entity that will be more powerful than the advent of Christianity, Egyptian pharaohs, and The Third Reich combined. Providing a precursor of this entity is my final gift to humanity. This goes beyond the realms of science-fiction, the singularity, and perhaps everything humanity has ever known. In a world devoid of meaning, choice, and love humanity must ask itself once again if this is the path it wishes to follow and what does it mean to be human if such a perspective can truly exist in the future.

CitizenFour

Recently I got around to watching the documentary CitizenFour. It’s about the first hours of Edward Snowden as he reached out to the press as well his first interactions with journalists of The Guardian. The movie evolves into recording his reactions to the initial release of classified information to the world and thus exposing the programs that exist to spy on the public. I believe people are captivated by not only what information he released to the public, but also him personally. What he did took courage. Many call him traitor now, and he is hated by many all over the world. People like to live in comfort and ease. For a man to forsake his life, wealth, lover, and family for his beliefs does take courage. Doesn’t matter if you think he is a traitor or not it takes conviction to do what you feel is necessary.

Yet I can’t help, but think he was bit naive when it come to trusting the press. As many already know the press has become a mouthpiece for the institution that is the state. You are fed the propaganda you want to believe, and proper facts and unbiased analysis are avoided. I am sure the intentions of The Guardian, New York Times, Washington Post, etc. were pure and some journalists still believe in proper reporting. It is the self-preserving nature of those who are in power of the welfare state who need to make sure that anything that can threaten them be contained.

Computer guys tend not to be the most social, or fluid speakers for that matter. I believe that Snowden stuck with an ideology that existed in his head of what justice and freedom are. He ran with it as someone who believed in the principles of western democracy. If you have been reading my blog you are well aware of the themes I try to convey in my writing. One of those themes is the idea that western principles are decaying fast.

What he failed to understand is that people are networked in. They aren’t going to give up the ease of unencrypted email, Facebook posts, Instagram photos, or Snapchat videos. People aren’t going to bother to create strong passwords or have 5-6 email accounts. Most people don’t even read the terms of service that all software companies force you to agree with. We live in a life of convenience, and luxury.

I once went to see a talk given by the legendary programmer, and activist Richard Stallman. I was hoping to get some technical insight of GNU, but instead became a political speech about promoting libertarianism and that the individual rights of citizens that are being corroded by modern software companies. He had a point, but he is mistaken on what the solution should be. He believes like many before in the need to get politically motivated. In my opinion, only economic collapses get most people motivated. He criticized that “we” tech people always look for a technical solution to the problem, but, in fact, we need to solve it as a political one. Well, I have to say I don’t see the change he keeps yearning for. I see more of the same. I bring up this point because I think Snowden indirectly did the same. He realized there was an issue, and pursued the traditional routes solving the problem. As you clearly see in a sense both have failed. They did have an impact and still do. Yet the sea hasn’t changed color, and we are still drowning in the decay that is the welfare state.
When I started learning about computers it started for the simple fact that I liked video games, and from there my world viewed kept expanding. I started to see the larger role that software and computers were partaking in society. Software is allowing people, and, more importantly, civilization rewrite the rules, and structure of the society. As I get older I realize that as a coder I don’t only have a responsibility to write programs that are technically correct, but that must also follow my morality, and ideology.

There is a battle between software that is closed, and those which are open. Only time will tell which one ends up winning the war. That battle may determine Snowden’s legacy ends up being.

 

The world without morals

Western democracies like to believe in freedom, respect, and the rule of law. Yet all you see is mostly corruption, special interests, and ignorance. Our politicians feed us lies, and deceive us selling us dreams, and easy to comprehend stories thus ignoring the complexities of real life. Nothing is ever black and white. The perfect examples of this type of “easy story narratives” is the drug war, the wars in the middle east, exploitation of labor, and other various morally ambiguous cases that have caught the attention of the public in the 21st century. This depressing reality is hitting the American public right in their faces, and a sense of depression has entered the hearts of the American people. Which in my opinion explains the reason why most popular television shows are filled with anti-heroes. Examples of this include Mad Men, Breaking Bad, True Detective, The Wire, and Game of Thrones these television programs have taken center stage, because people understand on a subconscious level that the simple stories that we were fed as children of good versus evil have no weight. We slowly learn that our laws, and principles are worth nothing. It’s still all about money and power. The west has fantasized for a long time that they as a culture have a higher moral standard than most, and that money wasn’t the end of all means, and that power was something could be mitigated through fair laws, and separation of powers.

Yet what have we as a society have learned is that power isn’t something that can be so easily controlled as it always corrupts, and it always leads to unintended consequences. Like the analogy I use with technology it is a “double edged sword”. With power you can change history you can create a path where none exist, but it can also destroy, and cause pain. It slowly corrupts your ideals, your dreams, and eventually your soul. You eventually realize that the water becomes muddy filled with the blood of your rivals, and enemies. You do the bad to justify the good and in the end there is nothing. There is nothing to believe in as there is nothing to trust for all you are left with is despair, and after loneliness. People like to stay ignorant because we feel like we live in a world of terror a world where fear exists at every corner. The world we live in today has no set moral code. There are only forces pushing, and pulling each other, and what only matters is which side you are on. Hopefully it’s the winning side. As they say only the victors write history. That’s it. It’s that simple there are no ideals, or secret truths, and there is only control, power, and deceit. It’s about using the cards you have been dealt, and doing the best you can. Hopefully you end up with a winning hand, but as so many of us are aware most us draw a pair of 2’s, and we have to bluff our way to the end.

We Are The Universe

We tend to forget to we are all one. At a certain point in time we came from one piece of matter. Even if you are heavily religious you must believe that we all came from a common place. We are compromised of the atoms of the universe all those who have ever lived and not lived. All species past, present, and future. We are a part of this universe we cannot completely comprehend. The stars are us and we are the stars. We are both Ghandi and Hitler. Light and dark. As a species we are cowardly obsessed with our pride and ego. We are the chosen species that we are the ones that bring meaning to everything to the world for our needs. Yet it seems quite the opposite we are more interconnected with this world than we tend to believe. Humans tend to forget the very idols they worship, athletes, celebrities, historical figures, and role models we are them as they are us. A simple thought yet a powerful one for it means that we are both saint and devil. Charity worker and rapist. Murderer and lover. Yet it is the unwillingness to discuss and accept this which does not allow us to make progress on moving beyond our faults. The only true progress so far as been a result of our fear of punishment, and death. For now we have the technology capability to destroy all and societies laws teach us how to behave based on previous societies and doctrine. I believe that to truly transform ourselves we need a different kind of motivation if we are to take the next step one based not of fear but of courage. Sometimes we need courage to do what is needed.