Arresting Jokers in the Houston Airport
26 August 2008 (updated 16 March 2013)
I’m sitting in the Houston airport, returning from a family vacation – you know, relaxing from all that hard work on the New God Argument. Just a moment ago, a recorded voice stated: “We would like to remind you that any jokes or inappropriate remarks about security may result in your arrest.”
The persons that recorded this message should be focusing on mitigating greater risks to our future than persons vocalizing inappropriate remarks (whatever those may be). We have just experienced a revolution in information tech, and it looks as if we may be on the cusp of a revolution in biotech. Who knows? After that, we may be worrying about grey goo and evil AGI within a few decades. Yet here we are threatening to arrest persons that vibrate their vocal cords in patterns that we don’t like.
Does our collective fear of divergent thoughts constitute a crowded theatre? Let’s not let it be so.