[ExI] commentary from those safely outside

Anders Sandberg anders at aleph.se
Tue Jun 11 09:01:30 UTC 2013

On 2013-06-10 22:14, BillK wrote:
> Perhaps a shorter summing up might be the destruction of trust. If 
> every institution, IRS, NSA, Wall Street, Government, police, justice 
> system, etc. seems intent on screwing the public over, then it is a 
> natural reaction to treat them as enemies.

One of the unusual things about US society is that it was a high trust 
society based on the myth of not trusting the government too much. This 
worked really well, but can break in two ways: if civil society trust 
declines or if untrusted government is unavoidable. When that happens 
the friction (less voluntary interactions, more resources placed on 
enforcing agreements and safety) becomes so large that things grind to a 
halt. The US seems to have a bit of both problems.

Dr Anders Sandberg
Future of Humanity Institute
Oxford Martin School
Oxford University

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