there will be much dying: even more so than during the worst conflicts of the 20th century. But rather than conventional wars (“nation vs nation”) it’ll be “us vs them”, where “us” and “them” will be defined by whichever dehumanized enemy your network filter bubble points you at
You don’t need to build concentration camps with barbed wire fences and guards if you can turn your entire society into a machine-mediated panopticon with automated penalties for non-compliance.
Tomorrow’s genocides will be decentralized and algorithmically tweaked, quite possibly executed without human intervention.
Forget barbed wire, concentration camps, gas chambers and gallows, and Hugo Boss uniforms. That’s the 20th century pattern of centralized, industrialized genocide. In the 21st century deep-learning mediated AI era, we have the tools to inflict agile, decentralized genocide as a cloud service on our victims.
Trump has discovered that in times of insecurity, the spectacle of cruelty provides a shared common focus for his supporters.
What’s new is the speed and specificity with which the cruelty can be applied, and the ability to redirect it in a matter of hours—increasing the sense of insecurity, which in turn drives social conservativism and support for violent self-defense.