Police State/Corporate State: The Devil is in the Details

Living in a stop and frisk nightmare, fifty years of Rip Van Winkle bedtime

Isaac Asimov quote: The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.

Police state, corporate state, denuded duncery state — a blistery bunch of 80 percenters lost in a carnival of debt, malignant food, maladjusted education and the folly of a full-throttle powerfully propagandist media like a proverbial copper girdle wire around our collective consciousness. That So Called Liberal (sic) Press (sic) playing triple dirges for the death of any emaciated version of democracy with a capital D for dollar.

Feeding frenzy of the old and new rich class, and a lot of wannabe’s lusting after lotto, You Tube fame, anything from the comfort of plasma 72 inch Big Brother.

Isaac Asimov’s I Robot, going on 70 years soon, and that’s the way of the Zionist drone hucksters, those lovely glassy-eyed Jeff Bezos, Zuckerberg, Gates, Dell types, and the entire class of probiotic Kombucha libertarians who have no interest in climate change, clean oceans, the growth in poverty, wars, pestilence, resource theft, toxins, on-the-spectrum child birth rates skyrocketing, art, revolution, real human to human relationships, nature, other species, blue skies, discourse, food sanity, clean water, education.

Read this from NewsSpeak, err, Newsweek rag:

The world’s top tech companies are in a race to build the best AI and capture that massive market, which means the technology will get better fast—and come at us as fast. IBM is investing $1 billion in its Watson; Amazon is banking on Alexa; Apple has Siri. Google, Facebook and Microsoft are devoting their research labs to AI and robotics. In September, Salesforce.com announced it’s adding AI, called Einstein, to its business software. Its value, CEO Marc Benioff said at the launch, will be in ‘helping people do the things that people are good at and turning more things over to machines.’

AI will lead us into the mother of all tech revolutions. The last time anything came close was around 1900, when the automobile, telecommunications, the airplane and mass electrification all came together at once, radically changing the world from the late 1800s to the 1920s. Such times are particularly frightening. ‘A society that had established countless routines and habits, norms and regulations, to fit the conditions of the previous revolution, does not find it easy to assimilate the new one,’ wrote economist Carlota Perez in Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital, her classic book. ‘A sense of impotence and frustration accumulates and a growing incongruence is experienced between the new and the old paradigm.’

Amazingly, these people are many cards missing from a full deck of humanity. Shelter, baby, sane sanity, and calm, less frenetic anxiety, less is more, and more is monstrous — obvious necessitates in any hierarchy of needs paradigm. More time for humanity to do what, is the question about these libertarians who think robotics and computers will turn us all into Athenians? More reading and schooling and community-it-takes-a-village action? Right! To help thy neighbor in endless bouts of humanitarian sharing? Right! To bring distribution of health, education, nourishment, and sanity to the rest of the world? Right! So, the goal of AI and robotics is, drum roll, to grease the palms of the millionaire and billionaire class and their classless middle managers and technocrats.

More:

The danger of artificial intelligence is in its behavior, and whether it is conscious or possesses other attributes of human thought is irrelevant. Computers that can drive cars and fly airplanes certainly pose dangers to humans and in fact Google has gone to great efforts to design safety into their self-driving cars. Computers that can run the entire world economy and provide constant companionship to all humans will pose great danger to humans.

Malicious motivation is irrelevant to many of the dangers posed by super-intelligent machines. There are two forms of ‘wireheading’ to guard against: computers that delude themselves about their observations of the environment and computers that modify the source of approval for their actions, for example modifying humans. There are also dangers from what Omohundro described as ‘Basic AI Drives.’ Super-intelligent machines may be tools of competition among humans, who will be careless about these dangers because they are caught up in the heat of competition.

And, Bill Hibbard, academic and AI tinkerer, is many times quoted as someone questioning AI, but let’s look at this, from James Barrat, author of Our Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era:

That’s the cornerstone of an idea called the ‘intelligence explosion,’ developed in the 1960s by English mathematician I.J. Good. At the time, Good was studying early artificial neural networks, the basis for ‘deep learning’ techniques that are creating a buzz today, some 50 years later. He anticipated that self-improving machines would become as intelligent, then exponentially more intelligent, than humans. They’d save mankind by solving intractable problems, including famine, disease and war. Near the end of his life, as I report in my book Our Final Invention, Good changed his mind. He feared global competition would push nations to develop superintelligence without safeguards. And like Stephen Hawking, Stuart Russell, Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Steve Wozniak, Good feared it would annihilate us.

‘They’ll become self-protective and seek resources to better achieve their goals. They’ll fight us to survive, and they won’t want to be turned off.’

The crux of the problem is that we don’t know how to control superintelligent machines. Many assume they will be harmless or even grateful. But important research conducted by A.I. scientist Steve Omohundro indicates that they will develop basic drives. Whether their job is to mine asteroids, pick stocks or manage our critical infrastructure of energy and water, they’ll become self-protective and seek resources to better achieve their goals. They’ll fight us to survive, and they won’t want to be turned off.

Omohundro’s research concludes that the drives of superintelligent machines will be on a collision course with our own, unless we design them very carefully. We are right to ask, as Stephen Hawking did, ‘So, facing possible futures of incalculable benefits and risks, the experts are surely doing everything possible to ensure the best outcome, right?’

These conversations intrigue the controllers and their minions, especially in our institutions of higher learning where a scant few are also the controllers of the narrative and worse, the curriculum. Imagine the dialogues around poverty, resource theft, cultural immolation with farmers, activists, revolutionaries, the parents of 11 million babies dying a year from treatable (mostly caused by malnutrition) disease.

Imagine the former prisoners talking about reform and the enslavement of their lives and families’ lives by the punishment society, largely ramped up by the very inventions of the robotics-AI-Big Data yahoos, espousing their idiocy at conferences in the Rockies and at the foot of their superconductors. Imagine the millions of lost human lives caused by the financialization schemes dreamed up by computer whizzes. The model of terror for New Orleans, Detroit, Flint, across the land and globe, the Bhopal-driven corporations utilizing the best and the brightest and their inventions of creative human destruction. The political classless sucking on the crack pipe of power and money. Imagine, these conferences and interviews INTERSECTING with the age old problem of the rich and haves and the majority, poor and haves not, never in the same room. From that mush-making propaganda and infotainment and dirty entertainment, to the daily dehumanizing life cycle of drive-thru’s, Amazon Fresh deliveries, tellerless banking, on-line K12 and college, and the endless Windows and Screens of mush that sucks any agency and verve out of the average person as they navigate the endless bureaucracy of the modern 21st Century/Beyond Kafka Road Show of Stiff Arm Saluting to the Digital Gods.

Can anyone see the efficacy of actually calling upon us, the masses, the ones stuck on the hamster wheel of generational poverty, generational indebtedness, generational running from the repo man (now some cyber security systems embedded into all the tools of democratic life – DMV, Labor, Medicine, Insurance, Credit Bureaus, Background Agencies, Drug Screeners, Fact Checkers).

I have spasms of the old Molotov way, when I hear these supposed eggheads, and our superficial lust for another Turning or Watson.

Oh, these billionaires and their underlings, the geniuses, sure, driving this absurdity of technology, colonizing Mars and Uranus, endless projects of tinkering, while coral reefs melt, farms dry up, millions perish yearly, while these captains of industry fly their AI-captained drones into the orifices of the dying while sending out gigatons of meaningless junk into both the ether and on our highways and byways.

Food, Shelter, Safety, Education, Health? Shit no, if you are not part of the White Jewish-Christo-Emirate Class –

Big questions derailed in this punishment society scrambling to make sense of 100 years of robber barons and elitists running the show, the neo-con, neo-liberal, neo-fascist, neo-libertarian, neo-gulag show: Where do I live, social worker? Portland, Oregon, where rubber and spewing diesels rule the day and night, 24/7?

At least 10 states (California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Texas, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Arizona, Florida and Colorado) offer less than 30 affordable rental units for every 100 potential renters. Will Mexico pay to build a wall to stem the American exodus south?

Image result for The Gap Figure five units affordable and available
You think those mental tinkerers give a shit about people, of the soil, pushed away from the lands – rivers, beaches, islands, mountains, deltas, steppes, savannas, fjords, ice-fields, hills, canyons, forests, deserts, jungles, cloud islands, plains — to solder the shit of their digital orgasm, and to glue, hammer, weld, galvanize, ionize, nanosize, titrate, liquefy, saw, mill, percolate, mine, harvest, spray, tap, refine, package, burn, acidify, synthesize, denature, distill, stitch, sew, de-ionize, plow, scrape, smelt, sluice, pulverize, butcher, hoe, excavate, fertilize, fumigate, decapitate, denigrate, assemble all the other supplies, junk, consumer items, raw goods, commodities, toys, weapons, propaganda tools for the vaunted minority in the First World.

The digital creeps love inventing and marketing the toys of lobotomy and anti-social thought control – one giant replicator for Call of Duty and variations on a theme . . . and all the crap that pits people against people, race against race, religion against religions, class against class, gender against gender, nation against nation in this clawing and shooting and pummeling cultural slipstream that teaches each next generation the devaluing of ”the other.”

The controllers this side of the next Kool-aide batch coursing through each and every home’s tap water spigot are having a hay day, as Americans are floundering now more than ever, waiting for the next 3.0 iPhone, pining over the next Ridley Scott movie of salvation, at the ready to stump the Trump in meaningless spasms of attacking just his side of fascism, leaving the rot-gut democrats and libertarians to continue their giant tapeworm of destruction to grow and grow.

Now, especially, this abomination out of the closet (Familia Trump) — reflective of the stupidity and tough-guy-in-the-mirror/on-Twitter-Kardashian-wanna-be but never really able to back machismo that is America the Red-White-Blue of the continuous hematoma in the pericardium — IS holding the sputtering heart of America, and Trump and Company, LLC, Kosher Certified, are drawing the ire and bombastic support of the leveling Americans with a little “a” for abomination. All these spasms, or even silent nightly sweats, after this last shit-hole election, when all along, the blackness of Capitalism has been the rancid pustule smothering each next generation – Baby-Boomer, Yuppie, Millennial, Gen X,Y, Gen Zed, Zombie. Always with us, days of genocidal floodgate openings, first nations the real genocide purloined by all manner of cultures, religions, shit-bag people — always here in the place called Turtle Island: those robber barons, slave holders, financiers from over the pond, Rothschilds, the 1.3 percenters called the Chosen People, shifting massive trillions through their sluices of pain, collective punishment gulags, legal gymnastics and technological Kendo moves their forte now. Colluding Talmud-citing, Bible-Thumping, Manifest Destiny-humping peoples from another womb.

As I lay Dying, William Faulkner  –

And the next morning they found him in his shirt-tail laying asleep on the floor like a felled steer, and the top of the box bored clean full of holes and Cash’s new auger broke off in the last one. When they taken the lid off her they found that two of them had bored on into her face.

Soylent Green is people, you’re goddamned right. Money, derivatives, the billionaires’ four-timing shuffle, the perversions of debt and credit, the heavy sack of coagulated blood hanging like a dowager hump on every family’s next and next generation.

Now daily the liberals, the so-denatured Americans of the little-to-the-left-of- center adherents of the continuous never tell a lie Georgy Porgy Washington, they cluck and claw and turn pink about this Mafioso President, the one on TV, paid for and delivered by the American people-Nielsen Ratings-Arbitron-$50,000 a second commercial satisfaction. They all tune in, now don’t they, happy Capital Americans. The un-Holy Publishers print his vile, art of the deal, publish the vile of every one of them – traitor, general, politico, POTUS, and shyster peddling invented history and deafening feats of pseudo psychology and mainstream entertainment.

We are all the rump and laughing stock in his apprentice way of raping entire classes of people, this POTUS Numero Four-Five. Like a .45 stuck in the craw of every American and Third Worlder!

In the mix, though, the controllers, they keep ladling pap or pabulum, pushing the spine loosening pacification into each bronchial of our lives — respect for all peoples, bring in the consensus crew, respect all opinions, all people while they kill us with their smiles.

Imagine, we should be teaching who to hate, how to hate and in all the meaningful ways, how to utilize hate into action. Imagine, we teach these toddlers and the college ones and all of us in these sappy companies to do the opposite of what should be – thou shalt hate and seek justice for crimes perpetrated by the elite onto humankind.

WTF! So, we unteach anger, unteach retribution, unteach action, unteach revolution, unteach how to spot a precipitant. Every minute we should be auguring that ability to fight back, and rebuff, not only the fascism of the Holy Republican Party and a Trump or Netanyahu, but to hate the entire sociopathic nature of corporations-militaries-punishers-bankers-investors-renters-technologists.

Instead, we get pundits and middling folk attacking anyone who might go out and march and scream and shout and dervish in the streets when the police state comes down hard like Gestapo, their weapons of Zionism glimmer in the sweat of the mace and industrial tear gas.

I see them go to Costco, see them find more days off lifting false dreams in their Disneyland world, their American evil seeding of cultures with the poison of travelers checks and exceptionalism . . . . like resistant tuberculous, the Americans hit those beaches and slum-poverty tours, cruises, enclaves in Costa Rica, anywhere on earth, the westerners end up like leeches looking for more soft flesh.

Americans . . . Germans . . . Canadians . . . Brits . . . Australians . . . .

From sea to shining oil slick sea!

Interestingly, I go back to Andre Vltchek, on one of his American book and film tours, “In the USA – “I Cannot Write!”:

I was shocked by the state in which I found the United States.

I left many years ago. I left New York, which was, for more than a decade, my home. I never returned, except to launch my books and films, and to see my friends. I never stayed for long time. Two weeks, this time, was the longest in years.

This visit broke me. It exhausted me. It thoroughly depressed me.

I saw clearly how grotesque pseudo-morality, disgusting religious concepts and hypocrisy influenced and ruined entire nations, client states, worldwide, especially in Asia and Africa.

Yes, I believe in collective guilt. Holding US citizenship, I share the guilt. And therefore, I work non-stop, not to wash my hands, but to stop the madness.

I am convinced that the West, the white race and its lackeys abroad, have no right to rule over this Planet. I saw enough to back my conviction.

The West is finished, its culture dead. What is left is unattractive, even horrifying. There is no heart, no compassion, and no creativity. And those billions of people beyond the Western realm should not be dying, while forced to support the aggressive individualism of the post-Christian, post-Crusade colonialism and fascism of Europe and the United States.

Ahh, living the dream, daily, watching people running around in tights and redneck t-shirts, everyone looking like they are in a Walmart clothing competition. Or the fake ones. All the inside jokes, the memes, from Facebook to the next recipe for spicy hot wings, these Americans lavish in the trash of the airwaves, Netflix, and the entire Madison Avenue tripe fed to this country of ennui, NASCAR, polluting football, and endless buffets.

I easily find how much I drown daily – my comeuppance —  the fruity intercourse-interchanges with the people I work with, those neighbors, the frightened ones, and the idiots running the streets with their lifted-up pick-ups with six-foot by eight-foot USA and Trump Makes America Great flags streaming like swastikas ablaze.

So many corners turned, USA, the world of half-assed thinking and doing, until we come to today, POLICE STATE USA, thanks largely to the colluding Press, and my daily reminder, how one of my professions ended up in the sewage pit. From Robert Parry, Consortium News:

It was on Dec. 9, 2004, when the mean-spirited mainstream media’s treatment of investigative journalist Gary Webb led him his career devastated, his family broken, his money gone and his life seemingly hopeless to commit suicide. It was a moment that should have shamed all the big-shot journalists who had a hand in Webb’s destruction, but it mostly didn’t.

Oh these precious decades like Rip Van Winkle narcolepsy of the collective soul, until we are all soiled by this lazy, anxiety-filled hibernation:

As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air – however slight – lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness.

— Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas

It’s easy to go on and on about this police state, and the policing by the corporations – swabs on cheeks, background checks, no time off, work 24-7, black out those holidays, no excuses for terminal gridlock, wage thieves. This is the mortician on duty and manning the radio and air ways – you are guilty until pronounced dead. You are suspect until you’ve given pound of flesh and left kidney for the cause of Capitalism. You are shit out of luck because we have the backing of the Sixth Fleet, a million marching SWAT teams, endless surveillance of every waking blink and snoring seizure.

It all comes down to basic rights, right?

In a blistering dissent in Utah v. Strieff, Justice Sonia Sotomayor blasted the court for holding ‘that the discovery of a warrant for an unpaid parking ticket will forgive a police officer’s violation of your Fourth Amendment rights.’ Sotomayor continued:

‘This Court has allowed an officer to stop you for whatever reason he wants—so long as he can point to a pretextual justification after the fact. That justification must provide specific reasons why the officer suspected you were breaking the law, but it may factor in your ethnicity, where you live, what you were wearing, and how you behaved. The officer does not even need to know which law you might have broken so long as he can later point to any possible infraction—even one that is minor, unrelated, or ambiguous.

The indignity of the stop is not limited to an officer telling you that you look like a criminal. The officer may next ask for your consent to inspect your bag or purse without telling you that you can decline. Regardless of your answer, he may order you to stand helpless, perhaps facing a wall with [your] hands raised. If the officer thinks you might be dangerous, he may then frisk you for weapons. This involves more than just a pat down. As onlookers pass by, the officer may feel with sensitive fingers every portion of [your] body. A thorough search [may] be made of [your] arms and armpits, waistline and back, the groin and area about the testicles, and entire surface of the legs down to the feet.’

If you still can’t read the writing on the wall, Sotomayor breaks it down further:

‘This case allows the police to stop you on the street, demand your identification, and check it for outstanding traffic warrants—even if you are doing nothing wrong… So long as the target is one of the many millions of people in this country with an outstanding arrest warrant, anything the officer finds in a search is fair game for use in a criminal prosecution. The officer’s incentive to violate the Constitution thus increases…’

Need any lessons on spread eagle poses, downward facing dog body cavity assists, frog march locomotion tips, and upside facing black boot gymnastics? God, the American Psychological Association, here, mealy-mouthing:

While much was known about psychologist involvement in detainee abuse prior to the PENS (Psychological Ethics and National Security) report, what has become progressively clearer is that the methods used by interrogators, guided by Behavioral Science Consultant Teams (BSCTs), have been intentionally shaped by psychologists. Many of the most objectionable interrogation strategies had been re-designed by psychologists from U.S. military programs, primarily the Survival, Evasion, Resistance, Escape (SERE) program, originally intended to protect U.S. soldiers from undesirable thought reform.

According to international definitions, and the understanding of the SERE program itself, SERE-based interrogation procedures constitute torture. Official reports and numerous journalists over the last several years have provided extensive documentation depicting how these SERE techniques were used in U.S. interrogation practices by SERE-trained psychologists, both in DOD and CIA detention facilities. Yet, however despicable, psychology should never let these ‘enhanced techniques’ cause us to ignore the only somewhat more subtle techniques prescribed in the Army Field Manual, the common guide for all U.S. military interrogations. In the Army Field Manual, allowable interrogation tactics include deception, fear escalation, ego harm, isolation, and psychological disorientation. Regardless of whether these techniques are ethical for professional interrogators, they are morally problematic for psychologists, given the clearly circumscribed ethical underpinnings of the profession.

Paul Kirk Haeder has been a journalist since 1977. He's covered police, environment, planning and zoning, county and city politics, as well as working in true small town/community journalism situations in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Mexico and beyond. He's been a part-time faculty since 1983, and as such has worked in prisons, gang-influenced programs, universities, colleges, alternative high schools, language schools, as a private contractor-writing instructor for US military in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and Washington. A forthcoming book (Dec. 15, 2016), Reimagining Sanity: Voices Beyond the Echo Chamber, looks at 10 years of his writing at Dissident Voice, and before, to bring defiance to the world that is now lobotomizing at a rate never before seen in history. Read his autobiography, weekly chapter installments, at LA Progressive. Read other articles by Paul, or visit Paul's website.