Hillary Clinton claims the United States is “totally unprepared” for the economic and psychological effects of artificial intelligence. Clinton spoke to radio host Hugh Hewitt this week in an interview promoting her new book. In the interview, the former Presidential candidate said the world was “racing headfirst into new era of artificial intelligence” that would drastically change “how we live, how we think, how we relate to each other.”
Clinton added, “A lot of really smart people, you know, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Stephen Hawking, a lot of really smart people are sounding an alarm that we’re not hearing. And their alarm is artificial intelligence is not our friend.” Clinton then highlighted two specific areas that will be impacted by artificial intelligence including digital surveillance and job automation. In regards to digital surveillance, Clinton argues “everything we know and everything we say and everything we write is, you know, recorded somewhere.”
“What are we going to do when we get driverless cars?” she asked. “It sounds like a great idea. And how many millions of people, truck drivers and parcel delivery people and cab drivers and even Uber drivers, what do we do with the millions of people who will no longer have a job? We are totally unprepared for that.”
It is essential to note economists and researchers have been arguing that advances in technology and artificial technology are going to have a significant impact on the job markets. The treat is not only for skilled and unskilled labors but also administrative professionals such as lawyers and accountants.
Researchers are unable to determine exactly when these changes will take place. However, a recent study suggested that for every new industrial robot installed in an area, between 3 to 5.6 jobs are permanently lost.
Keep in mind some of the most significant tech companies including Amazon are working towards job automation. For example, Amazon is currently working in grocery stores without cashiers and delivery systems without a delivery driver.
Moreover, China is working hard on creating the best artificial technology, which is concerning since the Trump administration is determined to cut funding for basic scientific research. Alphabet chairman Eric Schmidt was not too happy the Trump administration’s decision saying the U.S. government needs to “get [its] act together.”
Overall, Clinton did not explicitly reveal any specific policies that she would like to see. Instead, the government needs to act. “One thing I wanted to do if I had been president was to have a kind of blue-ribbon commission with people from all kinds of expertise coming together to say what should America’s policy on artificial intelligence be?” She added: “We can’t put the genie back in the bottle.”