What Some of the Richest, Brightest Tech Titans Are Missing

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RUSH: When you think of people that run the well-known tech companies, like Apple — and not just the CEO, but the upper level management people, you may not know their names, but when you think of these people, and, let’s say Facebook and Google and Apple, and even, you know, there are tech companies that are big that you don’t even know, like Oracle, Larry Ellison and Oracle is huge. But his work primarily is done in the enterprise of business, it’s not so much consumer facing.

But what do you think of when you think of these people? I’ll tell you what I think, without knowing them. I think that they have to be brilliant in what they do. I know that I couldn’t do what they do, in terms of the engineering and the design. I’m not talking about management people per se, but the people that write the software, that make all of these gadgets and gizmos that we use that are simplifying and complicating at the same time, life. They’re unique.

When it comes to the people that invent it, found it, that currently run it, before I start thinking of their politics, which I know, they still have to be fairly sharp. And I make the mistake of assuming that they’re common-sense smart. And every time I learn something about this group of people as a collective, I’m surprised at how unsmart they really are. And it wouldn’t matter if they didn’t wield such influence.

I’m not talking just about Zuckerberg and Facebook and banning conservatives and promoting liberalism. That’s bad enough as it is. There’s all kinds of subtle influencing that occurs practically everywhere in life, from advertising to plotlines on television shows and movies, even music. And these people have the power and influence to shape pop culture.

And they do it from the standpoint that they’re hip and we’re not and that their hipness is deserved, that their status as cool is deserved, they’ve earned it, and therefore they may know a little bit more than we do about society and culture and where it’s going. These are the default opinions that I have had about these people, collectively, not so much individually.

And then I tell myself that I’m often incorrect about a percentage of these perceptions that I have, ’cause I don’t know these people. Of all the people we’re talking about, I’ve only ever met Peter Thiel, and he’s not really one of the people I’m talking about here today. So I don’t have personal knowledge of these people.

So this story that I read that ran in the U.K. Guardian after originally running at some place called The Medium by Douglas Rushkoff, who’s a professor and a futurist, the headline: “How tech’s richest plan to save themselves after the apocalypse.” You know, that headline right there tells you a heck of a lot. The piece starts out this way.

“Last year, I got invited to a super-deluxe private resort to deliver a keynote speech to what I assumed would be a hundred or so investment bankers. It was by far the largest fee I had ever been offered for a talk – about half my annual professor’s salary – all to deliver some insight on the subject of ‘the future of technology.’

“I just sat there at a plain round table as my audience was brought to me.” This guy thought he was in the greenroom before going out to an auditorium, but he wasn’t. He was in the room the meeting was gonna take place. He had been paid all this money to speak to five people, five super wealthy people from the upper echelon of the hedge fund world, with much of their investment in Silicon Valley and tech.

They had come not to listen to what he had to say. They had come to ask him questions about things important to them. And it started out innocuously. They asked this guy, “Okay, Ethereum or bitcoin? Is quantum computing a real thing?” But that was just the icebreaker. They really weren’t concerned with all that. It wasn’t too long before they really got into the areas of greatest concern. And here they were.

These are the things of greatest concern to five super wealthy hedge fund tech guys paying a journalist a ton of money to come out and answer their questions. Which region of the planet will be less affected by the coming climate apocalypse, New Zealand or Alaska? They wanted to know where they should make plans to move once global warming destroys most everything. This is serious, folks. I know I’m a naturally funny guy. I’m not trying to be funny.

Next question: Is Google really building a home for the human brain of a man named Ray Kurzweil so that he will actually never die and we will always have access to his intelligence?

“The CEO of a brokerage house explained that he had nearly completed building his own underground bunker system and asked: ‘How do I maintain authority over my security force after,” this climate collapse? His concern was, okay, he’s got a bunker, he’s gonna put his family in there and he’s gonna have a security force. He wanted to know how he maintains authority over them. In abject panic with every man out for himself, how does he maintain the boss relationship? And they wanted to know how are they gonna pay these servants if there isn’t any money? Because they all think a full-fledged economic collapse is coming, along with the climate collapse that’s gonna cause the end of the earth. And they’re serious!

And they refer to this as The Event, capital T, capital E. It was their euphemism for the environmental collapse, the social unrest, the nuclear explosion, the unstoppable virus, or the Mr. Robot hack that takes everything down. In other words, these five guys were dead serious wanting answers to what they should do when humanity destroys the earth.

These guys are obviously crackpots! They are obviously wackos. They obviously believe this stuff, and they are among the wealthiest people in the world. They are eccentrically wealthy. And they invest in tech companies, and they direct tech companies in how software is written and so forth. This is not just a bunch of Looney Toon leftists on campus that believe this stuff. But hang on. It gets even better.

That single question occupied them for an hour, The Event, the end of the earth brought on by humanity. These guys discussed for an hour not the likelihood, but the guarantee that humanity, being human is going to destroy the earth.

“They knew armed guards would be required to protect their compounds from the angry mobs. But how would they pay the guards once money was worthless? What would stop the guards from choosing their own leader? The billionaires considered using special combination locks on the food supply that only they knew. Or making guards wear disciplinary collars of some kind in return for their survival.”

Meaning, if a guard or employee went off the reservation, the boss could zap ’em with the disciplinary collar and bring ’em back. “Or maybe building robots to serve as guards and workers – if that technology could be developed in time. That’s when it hit me: at least as far as these gentlemen were concerned, this was a talk about the future of technology.

“Taking their cue from Elon Musk colonizing Mars, Peter Thiel reversing the ageing process, or Sam Altman and Ray Kurzweil uploading their minds into supercomputers, they were preparing for a digital future that had a whole lot less to do with making the world a better place than it did with transcending the human condition altogether and insulating themselves from a very real and present danger of climate change, rising sea levels, mass migrations, global pandemics, nativist panic, and resource depletion. For them, the future of technology is really about just one thing: escape.”

This guy’s dead serious. He doesn’t name these five people. I don’t know who they are. They’re hedge fund billionaires heavily invested in tech, and they have bought into all of this. Every apocalyptic theory that crackpots around the world have advanced, they believe it. And they are seeking expert advice on how to survive it. They believe that human beings, in their natural state, hastened by the presidency of Donald Trump, are going to literally destroy the planet.

Next paragraph, and I’m gonna have to take a break after that, the writer, Douglas Rushkoff says: “There’s nothing wrong with madly optimistic appraisals of how technology might benefit human society. But the current drive for a post-human utopia is something else. It’s less a vision for the wholesale migration of humanity to a new state of being than a quest to transcend all that is human.”

These guys are trying to escape their own humanity! They’re trying to find a way to be unaffected by every other human being destroying the planet. How do they do it? That’s what they wanted to know.

“The human body, interdependence, compassion, vulnerability, and complexity. As technology philosophers have been pointing out for years, now, the transhumanist vision too easily reduces all of reality to data, concluding that ‘humans are nothing but information-processing objects.'”

What are these people missing in their lives? I’m telling you, it’s not complicated at all. These people are missing God. They either don’t believe in a God of creation or they think something else is. Whatever it is, they don’t think they are. But this idea — look, it’s one thing for a bunch of, you know, young, inexperienced, idealistic college students to believe in all this apocalyptic stuff, but for these people?

These are the people you expect to have intelligence and common sense to realize all this is a hoax and a crock. And not just the climate change aspect, but the whole idea that humanity is inherently destructive of the universe and that the only hope for survival is for these precious few humans to find a way to escape all the rest of us and what we do. And having the ability to control us even after they have escaped from us.

This talk about colonizing Mars, it’s real! Even though there have been two attempts on earth to create a bubble-like biosphere existence where people were gonna pretend they lived on Mars for two years, there hasn’t been one of them even on a host atmosphere where we know we can survive that has worked! There is no common sense that says we have the ability to colonize Mars. We can’t even get there and guarantee we’re gonna be alive when we get there. And yet these people are at the pinnacle of liberalism, folks!

These people are at the top of the liberal food chain. They’re among the biggest donors. They are the ones choosing candidates. These people have given up. Humanity is nothing but its own independent, destructive force, despite its best intentions.

I first encountered this 35 or 40 years ago in madcap environmental texts where they were complaining that humanity was the only thing that could destroy the planet. The biggest problem facing the environment was humanity. Well, I expect a bunch of uneducated, ignorant, lacking-common-sense dummkopfs to think that. But these are the people directing the future of the Democrat Party. And there’s more.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH:  I am reading to you from a story in the U.K. Guardian published yesterday: “How Tech’s Richest Plan to Save Themselves After the Apocalypse.”  Now listen to this next.  We just finished “concluding that ‘humans are nothing but information-processing objects.” They believe humanity is going to bring about epic apocalypse caused by climate change, mass migration, all the usual silly predictions made by leftists.  Listen to this next passage.

To these people, “he future became less a thing we create through our present-day choices or hopes for humankind than a predestined scenario we bet on with our venture capital but arrive at passively.”  In other words, the future is — and no matter what we do, we don’t affect it.  We don’t live it. The future is predestined. Not in a religious way. These people are talking about the relative irrelevance of humanity.  But thinking this way frees them up. It “freed everyone from the moral implications of their activities.”

If humans are eminently destructive and cannot be saved — and if human by its virtual existence is going to bring about the destruction of a habitable climate — then it doesn’t matter what you do before we get there.  There is no morality!  It’s all for one and all for one.  You are freed from any morality.  You’re freed from the moral implications of your actions, and so “echnology development became less a story of collective flourishing,” and is, in fact, nothing more “than personal survival.

“Worse,” the writer says, after talking to these hedge fund guys. “Worse, as I learned, to call attention to any of this was to unintentionally cast oneself as an enemy of the market or an anti-technology curmudgeon.” If you challenge these guys and the way they view humanity and our imminent destruction of the planet, then you immediately become an enemy of the market and an example of the very destruction.  You have no freedom to disagree.

“So instead of considering the practical ethics of impoverishing and exploiting the many in the name of , most academics, journalists, and science fiction writers instead considered much more abstract and fanciful conundrums: Is it fair for a stock trader to use smart drugs? Should children get implants for foreign languages” rather than having to learn them?

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Let me get back to this story. For those of you just joining, I’m not gonna repeat all this. But, if you’re interested, you really need to go to RushLimbaugh.com or go get the new Rush Limbaugh app for your iPhone or your Android device. It’s a great app. I mean, you can share anything on that app if you’re a member, you have access to the Dittocam, and even archived programs, Dittocam and audio.

You can stream live on the app wherever you are, if you can’t find a radio station. Anything you hear on the program is gonna be reprinted in monologue form in text and you’ll be able to share that with people, plus the volume of knowledge, the veritable amount of content created each day on this program is documented at both RushLimbaugh.com on the Web and on the app. And it’s kept. It’s an ongoing archive that you have constant access to.

Now, what I want to wrap up here, “How Tech’s Richest Plan to Save Themselves After the Apocalypse.” It’s a story about a futurist and a journalist who was asked to make a speech to what he thought was about a hundred hedge fund tech guys, and it turned out to be five super rich hedge fund guys wanting to ask him about his thoughts on what they think the future’s gonna be.

And their basic belief is that human beings are destroying the planet. The Event, capital T, capital E, is imminent, it’s the end of a habitable earth as we know it, brought about by humanity. The first event will be a cataclysmic climate change, which will then bring on famine and thirst and pestilence and death. And these guys want to know how they can exempt themselves and survive it and keep the others who survive who don’t have anything away from where they live.

How can they hire people to protect what they’ve got so that the hordes and the rabble can’t come in and take it? My question: “Well, where is the socialism here? Where is the ‘from each according to his means to each according to his needs?'” Here you have a bunch of left-wing full-fledged idiots, so selfish and so stupid that they are convinced that humanity simply — here’s the way to express this.

If the earth is an iPhone and everything on earth is the software and the operating system, to these guys, humanity is a bug, not a feature. Humanity is a bug that needs to be written out of the program. You might say, “Well, so what?” I’ll tell you so what. These are the people funding the Democrat Party. These are the people determining candidates. These are the people funding think tanks. These are the people funding the nonprofits. And they’re stupid! They’re just downright stupid, in addition to being dangerous leftists.

Now, you might be saying, “Rush, if they’re stupid, how come they’re super billionaires?” Well, you can be very wise and smart in a certain application, you might be great with numbers, you might be a great salesman, but in terms of just overall daily common sense, these people don’t have a smidgen lick of it. And they’ve bought into — they’re not that old. We don’t know the names of these five people. They’re not named in the story.

But it’s obvious there’s nothing in their life more important than them. There’s nothing in life bigger than themselves. And anybody with any humility knows that there’s always something bigger than yourself, that life itself is about much more than just you. But these guys, huh-uh. They think human beings are preprogrammed to destroy, and nothing can change it. That’s why they’re so seriously occupied with colonizing the Moon or Mars or finding a way to live 10,000 leagues under the sea with Captain Nemo.

I want to read to you the conclusion of the journalist that interviewed them here, one of the paragraphs of conclusion. He makes a good observation. Let me share this. I didn’t highlight this, but this is worth noting. “Our movies and television shows play out these fantasies for us.” The Handmaid’s Tale is a classic example of what these lunatics believe.

The Handmaid’s Tale is an apocalyptic future of what’s gonna happen to women if humanity isn’t stopped. Ready Player One is a classic illustration of what’s gonna happen to humanity if humanity isn’t stopped. And by that they mean conservatism. Our movies and television shows play out — here’s the thing. I keep interrupting myself because I have synapses firing in the brain all the time.

The irony here is that by every effective measure, life on earth for most humans has never been better. Worldwide poverty is at an all-time low, folks. Upward mobility all over the world. You can find pockets where these things are not true. But it’s undeniable. It’s been written about in several places. Life, human life is getting better. Life expectancy is expanding. Health care and health applications are getting better.

Life on earth has never been better than it is today. It’s gonna be better tomorrow than it was today. It’s gonna be better next year. But these people don’t believe this. They’re out of the Paul Ehrlich school, the guy that wrote back in the 1970s that by this time there wouldn’t be any humanity because overpopulation would have destroyed everything. And this guy is still a believed god to these people.

I do not have enough stupidity in me to be able to understand these people. I have enough brilliance to be able to analyze ’em, but I’m not stupid enough to relate to ’em. I sit here in utter awe that brilliant, smart people could in any way literally believe this stuff. And for being a bunch of leftists and socialists, they really don’t care about anybody else.

They’re not interested in distributing their wealth and helping humanity survive. They know full well that you’re gonna die and you’re not gonna survive, and they want to find a way to survive anyway. And if you survive with ’em, they want to find a way to keep you away from them so that you don’t steal what they’ve got. And they’re worried about how they keep their employees loyal and keep their employees from stealing from ’em. Among many other things.

“Our movies and television shows play out these fantasies for us. Zombie shows depict a post-apocalypse where people are no better than the undead – and seem to know it. Worse, these shows invite viewers to imagine the future as a zero-sum battle between the remaining humans, where one group’s survival is dependent on another one’s demise. Even Westworld – based on a science fiction novel in which robots run amok.”

Speaking of which, you would not believe the serious analysis of that show on my tech blogs. I read it simply for the entertainment value. There are websites that devote thousands of words to analyzing every episode of Westworld and what it means to humanity today. There are people that watch Westworld or some of these other sci-fi shows and think that that is actually what life is and that the creators, the writers, the directors and the producers have a leg up on knowing what life really is while we are just going through the motions.

I’m telling you, media has screwed up so many people. Not just news media. See, I keep interrupting myself with every sentence. Let me see if I get through this paragraph. “Even Westworld – based on a science fiction novel in which robots run amok – ended its second season with the ultimate reveal: Human beings are simpler and more predictable than the artificial intelligences we create. The robots learn that each of us can be reduced to just a few lines of code, and that we’re incapable of making any willful choices. Heck, even the robots in that show want to escape the confines of their bodies and spend the rest of their lives in a computer simulation.”

Now we get to AR and VR, augmented reality and virtual reality and how that is an escape from the horrors of actual life. It’s no wonder so many young people are so confused and screwed up. But here’s the kicker, folks.

The mental gymnastics, the irrational thinking, the disconnected, discombobulated thinking that is required for this kind of role reversal where the robots are smarter than we are, where the robots are gonna be smarter than we are, where the robots we create are gonna kill us, where the robots are so smart they, too, hate humanity, where the robots are so smart, they want to live in computer simulations and they’re the smart ones.

The mental gymnastics required to think this kind of rotgut depends on one assumption. That assumption is that humans suck. So we either have to change humans or we have to get away from them forever. And that’s what these five guys interviewing this futurist wanted to know how to do.

Now, again, if this was just five random people picked off a college campus, I wouldn’t even be wasting my time with this. These people discussed here are the people determining the political agenda of the American left or the Democrat Party. They are funding all of these think tanks and nonprofits that are pushing this whole idea of apocalypse, and they are single-handedly creating this attitude of pessimistic defeatism in young people.

And they are succeeding in creating the notion that human beings, in their natural existence, are deeply flawed, and the only redeeming aspect is socialism. And yet these people want no part of the socialism. That’s for everybody else. They want to be able to escape all of it. While they’re probably writing checks to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and trying to help Kamala Harris get elected and do whatever damage she can do, they’re trying to figure out a way to get to Mars to get away from all of this that they are single-handedly creating.

These are the people that invest in CNN. These are the people that tell MSNBC what to do. These are the people determining who is fit and unfit to post on Facebook and Twitter. I gotta stop. I gotta stop. I could keep going without another stop for a commercial or a phone call or anything. This is truly, truly — I mean, it’s hilarious, and it’s funny and all of this, but I am just — I shouldn’t be surprised. I’m surprised.

I’m surprised people who are otherwise thought to be this wise can believe such absolute drivel. They have to have gotten it from somewhere. They’ve had to have been taught it from somewhere when they were younger and now they’re teaching it. I gotta stop. Stop.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: You know, I remember when the hip thing to do was to make fun of those crazy survivalists, and look what these guys have become.  These guys have become the survivalists! You know, I found a way, I thought of a way to make these guys change their minds and talk them out of it.  You know what it is? Say, “You know what?  I agree with you guys!  In fact, what you guys think is gonna happen is written about in the Bible.  It’s right there in Revelation.”

They would abandon this because they don’t want anything to do with religion, nothing to do with Christianity. Nothing whatsoever! You tell them that everything they believe is in the Bible and it’s right there in Revelation, and you read it to ’em? They’ll go find some other way to explain what they think. Oh, yeah, it’s incumbent. You gotta hate God. You gotta hate religion. “It’s so simple-minded. It’s so beneath these elites.” (sigh)  You know, most of these fat cat liberals are just hoping they’re the ones that the last of the socialists don’t kill.  But, I mean, these are the people writing and producing and funding all these television shows and movies that depict all of this.

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