Here’s an example of the way new cars nudge and parent and pre-empt and control us. When you put the gear selector into Reverse , the car turns the radio down or even off . . . for saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety, of course.
The assumption, apparently, is that you’re too much of an imbecile to be capable of competently backing up the car while also listening to music, or even the news. So the car pre-empts you. Forces you to do what it thinks is best.
Rather, what the people who programmed it think best. Because some people are – apparently – imbeciles who can’t manage the task of backing up a car without the radio being turned down or off.
Understand this. The automated car future will be automated on the basis of the least common denominator; the most inept/feeble/addled/blind/stupid baseline imaginable. If you are a person whose skill and other capacities happen to be above this baseline, you will find it enraging as much as stifling.
If you haven’t read the short story, Harrison Bergeron, I recommend you do it.
Your next new car has already been programmed in accordance with its principles.
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