Aye, Robot

Over at TPM, M.J. Rosenberg is giving me a serious case of deja vu :

I just watched Hillary Clinton on “the View.” And I realized something. Every time she lets go a little (like when she jogged into the room), she is very appealing.

Yeah, I remember thinking the exact same thing about Gore in 200 and Kerry in 2004. I’ve heard Republicans also say similar things about Dole in 1996. Which leads me to ask when are the Washington elite going to realize that Americans want a human being to lead them, not some talking-points shitting android who looks uncomfortable in his/her own skin?

On a related subject

Robots could one day demand the same citizen’s rights as humans, according to a study by the British government.
. . .
The paper which addresses Robo-rights, titled Utopian dream or rise of the machines? examines the developments in artificial intelligence and how this may impact on law and politics.

The paper says a “monumental shift” could occur if robots develop to the point where they can reproduce, improve themselves or develop artificial intelligence.

The research suggests that at some point in the next 20 to 50 years robots could be granted rights.

If this happened, the report says, the robots would have certain responsibilities such as voting, the obligation to pay taxes, and perhaps serving compulsory military service.

Personally, I think this is far-fetched. Not just for the standard “where the hell is my flying car?” reasons, but the fact that i don’t see artificial intelligence ever getting to that point. Unless specifically programmed, artificially intelligent machines will lack human traits such as greed, lust, jealousy, compassion, fear, sadness, and joy that motivate our actions much more than intelligence. The idea that AI’s evolution will evolve to the point where “sentient” machines would have the same needs and desires as human beings is fanciful. If anything, as AI evolves towards more human-like behaviors, we’ll probably just cross into the uncanny valley and never return. That is, unless some AI genius decides it’s a good idea to program their robots to bitch about their taxes and have crappy taste in music. In which case, I say we tax the hell out of those rusty, metallic welfare queens. Get a job, IG-88!