Joy RohdeOct 10, 2022
Technocracy Now! Part 2
Exploring Technocracy through Cybernetics
New Books Network 2022
On part #2 of Technocracy Now, we tell stories of cybernetic technocracies.
First, we hear the story of Charles A. McClelland, a liberal political scientists who proposed a cybernetic computer system that claimed to predict conflicts before they happened. With this information, US policy makers could usher in a new age of peace and stability (and forever ensure a US-dominated global order). The project never accomplished everything it set out to do, but it is now being resurrected behind closed doors by Lockheed Martin. It's a techno-utopian dream of mathematical certainty in an uncertain world.
Then, why not cyber-socialism? In Salvador Allende's Chile, they were building a cybernetic computer network that connected factories to state planners. It seems technocratic, but these cyber-revolutionaries saw it as anything but. The short-lived Cybersyn Project promised using science to develop a more rationally-ordered economy. However, it also promised to guarantee the freedom and autonomy of workers. The project was destroyed in the brutal coup of 1973. However, did it work, and is it a dream worth resurrecting?
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