Of all the different issues we face, three problems pose existential challenges to our species. These three existential challenges are nuclear war, ecological collapse, and technological disruption. We should focus on them.
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One year ago I came to Davos and told you that our house is on fire. I said I wanted you to panic. I’ve been warned that telling people to panic about the climate crisis is a very dangerous thing to do. But don’t worry, it’s fine. Trust me, I’ve done this before and I can assure you it doesn’t lead to anything.
I’m here to talk about digital culture, but a strange, very interesting aspect of it: how close it has brought us to nature. How much it has brought us closer to the dream, to the Holy Grail of all designers and architects and engineers and you name it, to do it like nature does because nature does it best.
We’ve regained our stride, we discovered our spirit, and reawakened the powerful machinery of American enterprise. America’s thriving, America’s flourishing, and yes, America is winning again like never before.
Like all nations represented at this great forum, America hopes for a future in which everyone can prosper, and every child can grow up free from violence, poverty, and fear. Over the past year, we have made extraordinary strides in the US. We’re lifting up forgotten communities, creating exciting new opportunities, and helping every American find their path to the American Dream.
I think the question I’m trying to formulate is, how in this world of increasing optimization where the algorithms will be accurate… They’ll increasingly be accurate. But their application could lead to discrimination. How do we stop that?
At places like Davos, people like to tell success stories. But their financial success has come with an unthinkable price tag. And on climate change, we have to acknowledge that we have failed. All political movements in their present form have done so, and the media has failed to create broad public awareness. But Homo sapiens have not yet failed.
The unrelenting pace of technologies is deeply ironic, given the original intent of them to make our lives more efficient and give us more time. But we can all attest that the actual effect of this escalation of efficiency has been to increase the pace of work and play in our worlds.
With our team of policymakers, academics, former military, of playwrights, we explore why people refuse political compromise, go to war, attempt revolution, or resort to terrorism, focusing on what Darwin called “those virtues highly-esteemed and even sacred,” that give immense advantage to any group with devoted actors inspired to sacrifice for them.