Here is another insightful piece on Robert Mercer from an Alternet interview with Amy Goodman and Jane Mayer, who wrote the excellent piece on Mercer for The New Yorker. The new information from the Alternet interview is that Robert Mercer is probably more mentally defective than even we initially thought. For example, it seems that Mercer literally believes that Hillary Clinton is a murderer. Literally murdered people.
There’s a couple of things about Mercer that keep amazing me. The first thing is that Robert Mercer is obviously a genius grade mathematician. He’s a very smart guy. Him and some others have essentially figured out how to game our economic system by writing software that identifies big, unintuitive patterns in the capital markets. Good for him, kind of. But if you’re smart enough to figure that out, shouldn’t you also be smart enough to figure out that by concentrating wealth (and therefore power) in fewer and fewer hands the probability drastically increases that someone with real mental problems would end up with enough wealth and power to do serious harm? That seems pretty grade-school simple to understand. The thought has, apparently, eluded Mercer and his friends while they simultaneously prove the obvious fact. Oh humanity!
Also, how long before this software is available to everyone? And what would happen to the markets if everyone was algorithm trading?
In a related piece on the technological revolution spinning out of our control, Vox’s Ezra Klein has a fascinating and, honestly, terrifying, interview with Yuval Harari about his book Homo Deus: A Brief History Of Tomorrow. Harare seems to be arguing that humans’ A.I. technology will make humans obsolete, and probably extinct, in 300 years or less.
And once again, Mercer is leading the way. His learning or intelligent algorithm software is credited with helping Trump target voters on a micro level, and ultimately win the election.
We’re going to need some divine intervention before this is over.