JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE IMPOSSIBILITY OF REVERSING THE CLOCK ON ANY ASPECT OF TECHNOLOGY – A REMINDER THAT TECHNOLOGICAL CHANGE NEVER COMES WITHOUT HURTING SOME, EVEN THOUGH IT BRINGS BENEFITS TO MANY – THE LONG-TERM DRIVING FORCE IN ECONOMICS AND SOCIETY AND POLITICS, EVEN IN ETHICS   Leave a comment

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY DON PETTIS ON CBC NEWS

 

“Why we can never put the Big Tech monster back in its box

“Facebook, Google and the rest have changed the world — and Congress can’t reverse it”

 

I can’t imagine why anyone would think that possible. I can understand people wishing it might be so, but wishes carry no more weight in the real world than dreams or fantasies.

The thought is akin to the thinking of the infamous early-19th century Luddites in Europe, who thought that by smashing machines they could halt the effects of the Industrial Revolution.

The truth is that it is changing technology which drives our economy, always.  All of our advances, but the advances come at a price to the settled and comfortable notions and assumptions all of us have to one degree or another.

Along with changes in the economy, technological change ultimately drives most of what we call social and political change, not great popular movements or even revolutionary books. Thinking otherwise, something not at all uncommon, is much like putting the cart before the horse. The truth is that even our concepts of ethics change and will continue to change.

The flow of technological change resembles almost an acid or solvent flow eating away at all of our old arrangements and conventions and ideas in society.

And what is plain to see is that the rate of change in technology comes at an ever-increasing rate. It will only continue to accelerate, unless we have a thermonuclear war or the earth is struck by a great asteroid.

The time approaches when most ordinary people will not be able to cope, much less understand. And I don’t mean just cope with gadgets, I mean cope with the rapid changes coming in social arrangements and ethical understanding.

Brave new world indeed.

Posted June 13, 2019 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

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