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Stephen Hawking says this is the most dangerous time for our planet

Nulux Energy Solutions "Battling Entropy" The Nulux Journal, Climate Change, Economics, Politics, Technology Stephen Hawking says this is the most dangerous time for our planet

"Battling Entropy" The Nulux Journal Climate Change Economics Politics Technology

Stephen Hawking says this is the most dangerous time for our planet

Posted By Tony Ferguson

This is a repost from Tony Ferguson’s Blog Battling Entropy. See the full Battling Entropy blog site here

You can see Stephen Hawking’s recent opinion piece in the Guardian here. He is talking about the social fragmentation of our world, not physical, but as he says

We can’t go on ignoring inequality, because we have the means to destroy our world but not to escape it

Hawking makes the point that the internet, and the platforms it makes possible, create the opportunity for a few people to create enormous wealth while employing very few people. As Hawking says “This is inevitable, it is progress, but it is also socially destructive.”

Put this alongside the social and economic damage caused by the GFC (which we underestimate from our Australian perspective because we were largely spared its impact) and it is clear why so many people around the world have had enough.

The automation of factories has already decimated jobs in traditional manufacturing, and the rise of artificial intelligence is likely to extend this job destruction deep into the middle classes, with only the most caring, creative or supervisory roles remaining.

In the face of this, the solutions put forward by the populists – nationalism, isolationism and turning back the clock – are perhaps understandable but frankly counterproductive. In the face of an existential threat humanity needs to pull together, not fragment. Just one example of why isolationism is the wrong approach to increasing inequality is the need for a global approach to imposing a fair tax burden on the world’s billionaires and major corporations. Wealth derived from the tech sector is largely borderless. The developer of a wildly successful piece of software can equally sit in California, Sydney or the Bahamas to reap the benefits. The problem of climate change is similarly only properly addressable through a global approach.

Not a good time for our governments to be retreating within their borders! And an even worse time for political leaders to be spending their energies in ever more frenzied attacks on each other – defending their entrenched dogmas instead of working together to create some real solutions.

How does all of this have relevance to Australia? In my experience, we Aussies have a deeply embedded egalitarianism and a highly developed sense of the “fair go”. Our location, far from the world’s major centres, has made us a worldly lot – far more so than Americans.  In a world where Britain and the US are abrogating global leadership perhaps we need to take some?

take care,

tonypicc_compact

 

 

 

Tony Ferguson

 

This ‘Battling Entropy’ article represents the personal views of the author and should not be interpreted as the official views of Nulux Energy Solutions, its other employees or any other organisations with whom the author is associated, unless explicitly stated. Any views or opinions are not intended to malign any religion, ethnic group, club, organisation, company, or individual. All content provided on this blog is for informational purposes only. The author makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. The owner will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information. Comments are welcome, however, the author reserves the right to edit or delete any comments submitted to this blog without notice for any reason.

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