E706: Part 2: Sam Harris, “Waking Up” host, philosopher & neuroscientist on Trump’s asymmetric warfare, Muslim ban, the Jihadism problem, Zuck’s moral compass, fake news & how to avoid the A.I. apocalypse




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about this episode

In this Part 2 episode, Jason and Sam continue their exploration of the Trump Phenomenon, social media and fake news, and the benefits and threats of A.I. The thematic question to ask ourselves is: what sort of society do we want to live in? As technology becomes more powerful, and as more jobs become obviated by intelligent machines, Sam highlights that we need to figure out how to redistribute wealth to the better part of humanity. He reminds us though, that it’s not all depressing, and that with the right approach, we are living in the first moment of human history where we can plausibly imagine virtually everything changing.

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03:20: Sam explains how to avoid fake news, chaos, and collapse of values from cynical politicians, including Trump

06:37: Problem of unemployment that connects back to AI

11:35: Sam says that identity politics is at a dead end; how to build global civilization?

14:45: The good possible outcome with A.I.

22:50: This isn’t all depressing, because with the right approach, we are living at the first moment in human history where we can plausibly imagine virtually everything changing

29:42: Trump: asymmetric warfare, fake news, and bullsh*t vs. lying

33:58: Thoughts on Trump’s extreme vetting; Hillary Clinton’s political correctness and willful blindness

46:40: Is microdosing drugs worth experimenting with?

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  • Kevin C. Murray

    Loved this episode, especially the deep dive into the potential repercussions of human-level AI on culture and labor.

    On the downside, to hear two successful white guys talk about identity politics being a dead end is pretty laughable. It’s easy for anyone who hasn’t been held back by their identity to say that fighting for equality for your own historically oppressed group is “a dead end”.

    I strongly recommend reading “Nobody” by Marc Lamont Hill and then considering what identity means in America and whether you can write it off or if it has to be addressed at the same time as something like income inequality (which itself is exponentially worse for people of certain identities). Both Jason and Sam are far too intelligent to make such an ignorant statement.

    And yes, I’m a white guy… who grew up in a 95% African-American neighborhood and I’m sure I’m the only one within miles who’s doing as well as I am.