Is AI the Beginning of The End, Or Just A Beginning?
So, here we are… it’s 2023 and the world seems to believe that we are on the verge of both World War 3 AND a terminator-driven apocalyptic nightmare from which there is no escape. I’m sure that the most tempting reaction is to simply throw your hands high into the air, quit your job(s), stop by the store on the way home, purchase copius amounts of alcohol, marijuana, psilocybin, whatever drug of choice you have and just party and f*** your way to the next aspect of this game that we call “life.” If that’s the way you want to go heading into the end, I wouldn’t blame you, but I will judge you. I prefer to take a more adult, intelligent tact at viewing our current landscape. With a particular focus on this thing we call artificial intelligence.
We’ve all heard it at this point – if you haven’t then I both commend you for being insulated from the nonsense for so long as well as have questions for where the rock is located that you have been so successfully hiding under. “Artificial intelligence will lead to the demise of the human species.” Or some derivative of this claim. It is nearly impossible to hear at this point. But we have heard this song & dance before. We heard it with the automobile and with electricity (both occurred at roughly the same time). We heard similar levels of discountenance with regards to the development of the internet, “why would I need to read the newspaper on the internet when I have the perfectly good physical copy delivered to my doorstep every morning?” I know what you’re saying, as it has been shouted at me plenty of times already, “this is different.”
Believe me, I understand the difference that artificial intelligence poses with regards to dissolution of the employment market. But there is a problem, rather a few problems.
If the currently developed world(s), let alone America, want to stand a chance at staying relevant going into the future, they will need artificial intelligence in order to produce products and services that remain competitive. As shown in the above below: Asia, Africa, and Latin America still have substantial room to grow as far as population density is concerned. North America stands a bit different here as immigration is a big player in population growth, both legal and illegal immigration that is.
This also does not consider that here in the US we have a significant liabilities and balance of workforce problem already on our doorstep. There are 10,000 Boomers hitting retirement age every day of 2023. These are individuals that will be transitioning from producing consumers to strictly consumers.
This also doesn’t take into account an aspect from Point #2 above; health of the average workforce participant. Not only are the average American workers overworked as is, which is certainly contributing to the fertility and population replacement problems, but Joe & Jane are also not well. Placing a heavy burden on employers both in the costs of providing benefits, as well as the risks that come along with having employees and subordinates that are lacking in fortitude. A fragile workforce is a costly workforce. Both in capex as well as opportunity cost and risk management. Meanwhile so much of the population is buying-into these fanciful 007-esque story arcs of an invisible hand that is guiding this grand world against them in an elaborate scheme for world domination. This is very important as a consideration as it can cause individuals to feel that they have little-to-no power over their lives; a very important contribution to mental health and confidence. Which also ply-out effects on fertility and an individual’s physical health.
The reason I bring these points up is that I cannot help but grow concerned thatAmerica is likely to charge headlong into shutting down innovation in artificial intelligence over raw fear of our own demise without thinking things through rationally.
Keep in mind, we took the exact same approach to COVID-19 and all that accomplished was a series of numbskull, stupid decisions, all based on fears that were largely misplaced.
So, I ask
Are we on the precipice of shooting ourselves in the knees (or gonads at this point) by shutting down development of artificial intelligence right before we are about to need it most?
Our world as we know it can end in a fashion that does not involve a third global conflict, or the demise of our species. It will take stoic leadership, and intelligent guidance in order to achieve such a possible task. We cannot afford to be driven by such foolish whims as emotions like fear & hate.
Through strength of the individual, and unification in a mission to build a world that is better than today, so that we may provide a better platform for our children to stand upon, is how we get this done. It’s how our grandparents did it, it’s how their grandparents did it, and it’s how we need to do it now.
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