Nothing quite screams “foremost authority on generative article intelligence” like a 99 year-old-German man who nearly ushered in a global nuclear war over a game of geopolitical chicken.
That man, Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford’s Secretary of State and the author of the subtly titled “World Order” believes ChatGPT-style AI systems could one day break human consciousness, usher in a new wave of techo-reactionary religious mysticism, and fundamentally collapse reality as we know it. Yes, the same ChatGPT that can’t do elementary level arithmetic.
The alleged war criminal dished out those ideas in a recent editorial for The Wall Street Journal. Kissinger had some help. Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, and computer scientist Daniel Huttenlocher rounded out the op–ed’s authors, whom we’ll refer to from here on out as “The AI Stooges.” These Stooges previously worked together on a book-length tome on technology, called, The Age of AI: And Our Human Future, which similarly made wide, starry-eyed claims about how AI could fundamentally alter human identity and potentially spur a new Cold War between the U.S. and China. That book was written nearly two years prior to the current craze around OpenAI’s ChatGPT and the coming wave of competing generative AI models. You can think of the Journal editorial then as a kind of wildly speculative, acid trip expansion pack.
Schmidt, arguably the most credentialed of the Stooges when it comes to technology, also has the most to gain from an AI panic. The former Google executive has a long history of slipping in and out of Washington D.C. circles, making regular appearances in Barack Obama’s White House, where he reportedly encouraged the president to look favorably on the tech industry. Under Donald Trump, Schmidt formally co-headed the National Security Commission on AI, an organization tasked with producing lengthy reports for the President and Congress detailing methods and strategies for advancing AI in national defense. The main takeaway from that report? The U.S. must invest more in AI to counter China. Schmidt also just so happens to reportedly have investments in his own military AI startups.
All of that’s to say these three Stooges aren’t necessarily the absolute greatest sources of wisdom when it comes to the real wold implications or a real, and truly important technology. But don’t take our word for it. Continue reading below to read some Cold War warmonger’s bonkers—and some not so bonkers—predictions about AI chatbots.