Computers Voting Instead of People in Our Brave New World

With the 2020 election results now set to stand, whether it's a coup or pure laziness, or computer glitches, or diabolical machinations or some combination of these, we now have what I call "a stealth government."  This stands in opposition to a legitimate or authentic government — implying that not only liberty, but our lives are being threatened.  This constitutes a re-modelling of government.  Under this re-modelling, technocratic systems like Dominion move to center stage, defining through technology what authentic voting is.  The computer and not the voter becomes the focus for defining the election. A.I. (artificial intelligence) sets the standard for what a comprehensive and valid approach to election engineering and administration is.  Substitute your own initials for A.I., and then demote yourself in the process.  You are contributing to outcomes, but you are not the engine for producing those outcomes. 

Other institutions of our society are also moving away from the centrality of the person to promoting computer-generated models of cost efficiency.  Already, the healthcare system is being re-organized.  Instead of just encountering physicians, nurses, and aides in hospitals, now we also find in greater and greater numbers physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, nurses, nurses' aides, aides, and "others."  At the same time, there are fewer and fewer physicians.  Now there is a varied mass of caregivers.  Job titles proliferate.  But that is not all: elaborate computer models are setting up efficiency strategies for hospitals.  Risk analyses are put in place to justify cost efficiencies.  

So even when I was in the hospital for heart surgery in June, the surgeon and the anesthesiologist were the only surgeons present even though I was "semi-dead" on a heart-lung machine. There was no surgeon present except the surgeon performing the surgery, which definitely represents a change in traditional practice.  The surgical report I received after the surgery noted that instead of a physician in attendance, a physician's assistant was in attendance.  As I lay on the stretcher in the waiting area prior to my surgery on the morning of June 10, I noticed that when the various medical personnel were gathering, there were no actual medical doctors except my anesthesiologist (my thoracic surgeon had not shown up yet).  I asked the head surgical nurse about this, and she nodded and told me my observation was correct.  Further, no doctors were stationed on the floor even though it was the heart wing (assuredly the most life-and-death wing in the hospital, right?).

When I was in the same hospital for intestinal surgery in 2015, two doctors (probably residents) were in charge of the floor and on duty 24/7.  Obviously, the strategic computer model had done a cost-risk analysis and determined that the limitations put on physician presence did not incur a risk that offset the cost savings.  The setting of "risk scores" for all kinds of medical issues and procedures is becoming commonplace.

Science tells us there is a risk of infection in heart surgery.  In order to minimize that risk of infection, it is standard operating practice to shave the body of a patient going into heart surgery and then to use a large brush to brush on a pink anti-bacterial lotion prior to the surgery (say, the night before).  Nobody told me about this practice until it was about to happen last June, and then, at 11:00 P.M. the night before major heart surgery, an aide came in and told me I would be shaved.  My only knowledge of body shaving before that point was from the Book of Numbers in the Bible, where certain men of God had their bodies shaved.  One might have expected that some physician or serious professional would have informed the me ahead of time that this would go into effect.  But no, there was no explanation to me as to why this was necessary.  The outcome was everything, and my satisfaction and acceptance of the outcome were secondary.  That's a computer mindset.

Similarly, only a few short years ago, voting was done mechanically.  One entered an enclosed area and simply pulled a few small levers and one large lever to record one's vote.  This was mechanical and did not depend upon algorithms.  Before that system was the ballot box, where the individual voter just put his vote into a box.  Now, with the geek-centered systems in place (Texas had rejected the use of Dominion a few years ago, but it still was picked up by 30-plus states), a ballot is inserted and scanned by the computer.  The votes that are scanned may not have been marked correctly, and various ambiguities may arise, which then are "adjudicated" by the computer.  Other interventions are required or permissible under various situations.  With this geekification of the voting process, the actual direct impact of the individual vote is diluted.  Under the guise of speed in counting and efficiency, there is a sacrifice of simplicity.  The voter becomes involved with another virtual dimension of reality, and the result is a loss of authority over the decision to vote and the vote itself.  The voter's vote gains legitimacy because it is, in part, ratified as legitimate by the computer.

Thus, the computer in voting and in many areas of our lives is diluting the authority of the individual and the power of the individual's choices and thought life.  Although the computer adds to efficiency and time-saving, it also distorts and diminishes our liberty.  Large institutions like hospitals, corporations, schools, and of course governments are the ones who are generating these computers and the geekification of our society.  Some of the results are incredible.  But there may be certain areas we might not wish to computerize even though it feels cool or efficient.

With the new ubiquitous geek mentality, there is thus the problem of individuals being treated more and more as systems being run through computers.  We are processed rather than cared for.  We are forced into a pre-set model whereby we are treated "for our own good" rather than as ends in ourselves.  The computer is looking for certain outcomes, but we are already God's outcome, special and designed to perfection according to His eternal purpose.

It is a new reality, they say.  Get used to it.  It's for the good of all.  Didn't you read John Stuart Mill?  He wrote about the greatest good for the greatest number.  You say we are Marxists, but no, we are followers of Mill, a great liberal democrat.  You pathetic, sniveling, backward-looking people.  The nineteen fifties are over.  Get used to it!

This deplorable will never get used to it.

Image: Azamat Esenaliev via Pexels, Pexels License.