Sunday, September 21, 2008

No Morality

"It's not just how we use the technology that concerns us. We're also concerned about what kind of people we become when we use it." Anonymous Amish Man "There are no technological solutions to social problems." Douglas Merrill Google

These quotes comprise the signature Murry C uses in his emails. Every time I get a missive from MC, I read these (I wish I had them, dammit!) as they point out the fact there is no morality in tech. In Terminator I, the cyborg was bad, in T2, he was good. The difference, programming. The same thing applies to algorithms and money as money now has become bits, able to to moved, manipulated and distributed along the same lines 0's and 1's are manipulated in every non-quantum computer system in the world. Viewed in that light, it's easy to see how computer tech changed the notion of money forever.

The financial machines that placed the trades that bankrupted A.I.G. were programmed by financial managers to act with the speed of light in conducting electronic trades often lasting only a few seconds each, millions of times a day. Only a machine could calculate mathematical probabilities factored in regarding the squiggles up and down of interest rates, exchange rates and stock and bonds prices - and prices for packaged mortgages...

A hedge fund does not make money by producing goods and services. It does not advance funds to buy real assets or even lend money. It borrows huge sums to leverage its bet with nearly free credit. Its managers are not industrial engineers but mathematicians who program computers to make cross-bets or "straddles" on which way interest rates, currency exchange rates, stock or bond prices may move - or the prices for packaged bank mortgages. The packaged loans may be sound or they may be junk. It doesn't matter. All that matters is making money in a marketplace where most trades last only a few seconds. What creates the gains is the price fibrillation - volatility.

Today, the financial system has crashed but not the tech driving it. Why? Because the kind of people using the tech to make the money (based on vapor) allowed greed to replace intelligence, thus creating a toxic wasteland that we, the people, are supposed to bailout.

There's something happening here
What it is ain't exactly clear - For What's It's Worth
Buffalo Springfield
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