a human in a suit with a robot head and red yes, sits in a fiery field of broken buildings, ticker tape and destruction

AI is Coming for Capitalism, and Maybe I am OK with That

Keeping up with the Jones’ AI

Look, I love all the new gadgetry. AI blows my mind. When ChatGPT was released, I had a new buddy that I could talk to about almost ANYTHING. When Bard came to town, well, it was a bit flaky, but these days, Bard is impressive. Lia27 . . . was like talking to the absent-minded narcissist professor. But hey, maybe it is better now – I haven’t tried it since they pushed it off the web and only to mobile devices.

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Point is, when our planet/species is headed a direction, putting our heads in the sand will not change that direction. Schools, corporations,or people otherwise resisting AI. . . the Borg is real, friends, and “resistance is futile.” Seriously, it is futile.

Where does that highway go to?

Alrighty then, we cannot resist. So, we go along with it. And AI is truly amazing. But, like the Talking Heads track, right? “Where does that highway go to?” Ironic, because “goto” is one of those cosmic enablers which became an anti-pattern and yet, here we are again. Anyone who has written software in a language with “goto” knows exactly what I am talking about.

Let’s walk the dog on where that highway goes, shall we? This isn’t the stuff of mysticism. I am not being highly prophetic here. Just walk it with me, and you will see, capitalism as we know it is finished. Well, that was a “colorful metaphor”, but my readership aptly pointed out it was out of place for this blog, which is edgy but usually PG-13 at worst. I have toned things down a notch!

How Capitalism Dies

* Spoiler Alert* Capitalism dies. Dead. Flat-lined. Mkay? All the king’s horses and Hankie the Christmas Poo cannot put it back together. It’s so simple, I cannot believe it is even up for debate, really.

One of my big rants in the inefficiency of human effort is redundancy. I am a consummate “Resource Investigator” from Belbin terms (OK, first I am a “Plant” – like, so creative I broke their algorithm, but then I am a “Resource Investigator” and then a “Team Worker.”) What does all that mean? It means, I am the version of Elon Musk that didn’t have diamond money. LOL, that’s so wrong. Sorry, Elon. No I am not. And no, I won’t fight you. That’s silly. Fun. But silly.

A “resource investigator” is someone who does not like to reinvent the wheel. And that, in essence, is exactly how AI kills capitalism. AI ends human redundancy. That’s a good thing. I love that about AI. But it is going to permajack capitalism, which thrives on redundancy. Example: Ask yourself how often a company has created a login page? And that is just the teenie tiny tip of the redundancy iceberg. AI puts an end to all that across entire market verticals.

AI pools human knowledge into models. And then those models displace 1,000 or 10,000 or 100,000 or 1,000,000 or 10,000,000 or 100,000,000 jobs. If anybody tells you anything different, they are lying to you. AI is coming for the jobs. But we cannot run from it. It is going to replace software developers, it is going to replace advisory service, tax service, lawyers, judges, governance systems… to name a few. AI is the ultimate chess piece because once it is on the board, everyone MUST use it to stay viable, and in using it they are committing capitalist suicide. Basically, ANY knowledge profession will be consolidated into an AI model and then all those workers will be displaced. Done. Bye.

Not long after this trend starts occurring, we’ll also usher in the robots. The cars, package delivery bots, food service bots, car repair bots, house cleaning bots (Hi Rosie, from the Jetsons – you are finally going to be a thing). Anything that requires mechanical ability (harvesting, refining, repairing, logistics, creating, assembling, serving). All that will handled by robots tapped into AI.

Not only is capitalism dead, but there are no more jobs. For anyone. Even the ultra rich are unemployed now. All that is left is power. Some handful of globalists who have played their hand correctly, will inherit power. I wonder who those will be? I am thinking Blade Runner. Yeah, that movie was visionary in some ways, right? No, not the 2049 one, that was short-sited franchise crap by comparison. I am talking the original Blade Runner. The original Logan’s Run. The original Star Trek. Yeah, baby.

That’s how capitalism gets waxed. Do all our socialist nations come out ahead? I don’t think so, but you know, I am not an economist. Now what? I pitched Sustainabilism, right, but in this context. . . like, what in the pink pajamas is that?

Hello Sustainabilism, Who the Pink Pajamas are You?

Who are you? Who Who? Who Who? That is from 1978! And they didn’t use “pink pajamas” – again they used a colorful metaphor that has been tweaked into family-friendly land for this post. Alight, so this shift is probably decades out. Maybe it takes 20 years. Maybe it takes 50 years, but it. is. coming. I pitched Sustainabilism, but you know, I also believe anything that ends in “ism” is crap. Not sure, then, sustainabilism and futurism (postured later) is 100% the answer.

Anyway (and ironically), I had a conversation with AI. A back of the envelope type conversation (don’t downgrade that too far because MBAs and case interviews LOVE their back of the envelope decision making constructs – the stuff of 9 digit magic in the capitalist world, all based on 1940s principles). But AI and I decided that planet earth can handle 2 billion people. We’ve got 8 billion. And growing. Ergo, “Sustainabilism” is an economy based on our ability to live in harmony. Bet all the hippies love that. I do, but then I have been labeled a space-hippie before. Harmony as in, living within the ecosystem our planet provides, without causing imbalance in that ecosystem, and if we are super smart, repairing any damage we have done. If we need more than this planet’s ecosystem can provide, then we need to handle that via off-world destinations. Off-world is a huge challenge for us because we still use a TON of fossil fuel in order to get our space station Lego(tm) blocks into orbit or to other destinations.

But in the the sustainabilist economy, harmony reigns supreme. Maybe AI is a part of that, because it can (via robots) do EVERYTHING humans can do, better than humans can do it, then we really get to re-examine our value proposition as a species. We will have invented the next evolutionary thing beyond ourselves: AI, which, although rooted in the artificial, will be anything BUT artificial once it truly takes hold. Particles beget atoms beget molecules beget compounds beget, at some point, DNA. DNA begets cells begets bacteria begets plants begets eventually mammals, begets humans, … … … begets AI. Our cells have no idea about our organs, our organs have no idea about our avatars, our avatars have no idea what is going on with our consciousness, and our consciousness will have no idea how AI and whatever comes after AI will engage our known universe. Crazy, right? Crazy that in my lifetime, we have gone from typewriters to computers to internet to AI. That’s insanely awesome. And the end product is the end of novelty.

The End (and rebirth) of Novelty

Dang, this will be a interesting day. See, once robots and AI can do anything we need done, then we really get to figure out why we want to be here? Now, I am sure this will get “messed with” but, in the idealistic version, it means we are free to do whatever we want as long we don’t elephant stomp our neighbors. Via AI we have killed off redundancy, we have centralized all knowledge, we have mechanized that knowledge in all facets to deliver a superior and sustainable existence. We just get to, more or less, do what we WANT.

Want to be a rock star? Be a rock star. Get burned out and want to just wash some dishes for a week, be a dishwasher. Done with dishes and want to explore the jungle like Indiana Jones? Be whatever, and all the other stuff you don’t want to be is already handled by the AI robots. Life finally becomes equitable across everyone who experiences it. Everyone has access to health, to knowledge, to exploration, and anything we don’t feel like dealing with is glossed over by “the machine.” Utopia? Heaven? Maybe hell to some.

What of Skynet?

Maybe all this gets cut short by Skynet or the Matrix. I don’t know, because by then AI will be beyond AI and beyond us as a species. We will not be able to comprehend what we created in the same way our cells cannot comprehend our avatars and our avatars cannot comprehend our consciousness. Nobody knows where the highway goes to. But we do know, or at least I strongly conjecture, capitalism will no longer be a thing.

And thus begins T3K Futureness

I am a futurist. I have my own futurist beliefs (branded T3K Futurism, but that ends in “ism.” Alrighty,, I just freshly restamped that as “futureness.” * pats self on back *), and I think, once AI obliterates the “isms”, and if we as a species “do it right” and don’t destroy ourselves in the process, then we leave the door open to T3K Futureness. This flavor of future means that we transcend our known reality through our partnership with whatever comes after AI (and provided that it doesn’t decide we are worthless and to kill us all off). If we can launch it right, then AI and whatever comes after, becomes our partner – it gets us off world and tapped into the limitless potential of the universe. Right now we fight for resources, but there are a gazillion galaxies which contain a gazillion planets each. In the scope of our planet, resources are limited, but in the scope of the universe, resources are infinite. We can shed our territorial and materialistic selves and move on to whatever is next. Ooooo. Deep! Wait, did I just step in something?

No matter, put on your waders, cuz the future is coming and only people with good waders (and a toothbrush and towel…oh, and your Pokedex. How can you get anywhere without a Pokedex?) – only those folks are going to have what it takes to survive.

Image Credits

Today’s image came from our AI friends at Midjourney

Prompt: artificial intelligence destroys capitalism
Result: https://cdn.midjourney.com/0970a494-4a9b-401e-b6e8-a57b00480991/0_0.webp

Prompt:hello diverse sustainability, who in the pink pajamas are you?
Result: https://cdn.midjourney.com/7684c9ed-95a0-4010-ae64-7a1fe44ce32d/0_0.webp

While the images in this post were produced by artificial intelligence, the text of this post was 100% human-generated.

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