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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Forget ideology, liberal democracy’s newest threats come from technology and bioscience

John Naughton
The Guardian
Originally posted August 28, 2016

Here is an excerpt:

Here Harari ventures into the kind of dystopian territory that Aldous Huxley would recognise. He sees three broad directions.

1. Humans will lose their economic and military usefulness, and the economic system will stop attaching much value to them.

2. The system will still find value in humans collectively but not in unique individuals.

3. The system will, however, find value in some unique individuals, “but these will be a new race of upgraded superhumans rather than the mass of the population”. By “system”, he means the new kind of society that will evolve as bioscience and information technology progress at their current breakneck pace. As before, this society will be based on a deal between religion and science but this time humanism will be displaced by what Harari calls “dataism” – a belief that the universe consists of data flows, and the value of any entity or phenomenon is determined by its contribution to data processing.

The article is here.