Joe Rogan | What is the Purpose of Innovation? w/Russell Brand


5 years ago



Russell Brand

4 appearances

Russell Brand is a comedian, actor, author, activist, and host of the podcast "Stay Free with Russell Brand."


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What I think is interesting is that the continual bias along that technological path is towards profit. You know, when we see those machines, the end point is always how do we maximize profit. There is no, like, the influence of how do we do what's right. That's like a sort of a person, like a sort of a general, ethical, what do I want to say, sort of code, is not being introduced. There is no regulation. Like, you know, ultimately, you know, ultimately people will create the warrior monkeys or the most profitable machines. People will, because the counter-argument isn't being made. No one is, like what I'm saying, no one's making it. There's just, there's no union of, you know, there's no sort of clear opinion of, hang on a minute, where could we be going? No, there is no body or ideology that's able to oppose the relentless march of capitalism. I'm not sort of like a flat-out, capitalism is bad, here I am promoting a book, using an iPhone, or you know what I mean? We're all swimming in it. But what I'm saying is that if we acknowledge there are transcendent realms, there is information, date and data that exists beyond what we're able to receive with our senses, how are we going to incorporate that in the way we organize? Because otherwise, the sort of the magnetism, the pull, the g-force of what's most profitable, what's going to continue to suit the requirements of the powerful, that will always, the bias will always fall in that direction. And it seems like where that's heading is certain kinds of ecological disaster, certain kinds of economic inequality, certain kinds of conflict, you know, and like, one of the simple experiments that I apply is, you know, if we, you know, if people say, oh, what's wrong with the world, the world's so fucked, all this polarity, I sometimes think, well, who is benefiting from how it is now? Are there is anyone benefiting? Are there any groups, institutions or individuals for whom this current state is beneficial? And if the answer to that question is yes, then look at who those institutions are, and they are most likely to a degree involved in establishing and maintaining these systems. And there are, you know, institutions and individuals and organizations that this works just fine for. But are they just capitalizing on it or are they organizing it? And is a normal part of the way human beings operate with this constant desire for innovation, constant desire for improvement. We always want to push further. No one's comfortable where they are. They will always want to be in a better place. And this is almost like it's built into capitalism, right? I agree. That this materialism, which is built into capitalism, also is what fuels innovation. Because you want the newest iPhone, so they have to design it and build it and make it. And when new things come out, like this new robot that apparently you're going to 100 models, whatever that means, what that is, is they're going to sell it. So there's like, it's fueling innovation. Someone else will come along and compete with Boston Dynamics. And then there will be, there will be innovation wars. If these innovation wars weren't in place right now, our phones would look nothing like the iPhone X. It just wouldn't. It wouldn't look like the SX. It would look like, who knows what it would look like? But there would be no incentive for them to compete against all these Samsung devices and Huawei devices. And all that stuff is fueling this innovation, but it's all being fueled by capitalism. You're quite right that innovation is one of the benefits of maintaining this system. But it seems to me that we are excluding other factors that recur throughout human cultures. We all have an idea of fairness, of justice. And yeah, I don't want some clunky, weird sort of Eastern block phone made out of grey plastic with only one button on it. But like, we have to, I suppose, examine as a society and as individuals what is important to us. Now where I think, you know, we've touched several times upon the fact that as an individual, you're more likely to bias yourself towards negative information online. You know, like, we do have a degree of individual power and individual responsibility. And I feel like if enough people awaken to the possibility of different narratives, that the capitalist idea of innovation and success and progress, that all of these words can be examined. What do you mean progress that assumes a teleology, a purpose, a destination? If all time is happening at once, if space is infinite, like, you know, that bit of yours of like, you know, to try and fathom for a moment the limitlessness that we're existing within, then all these things are constructs. This is a construct and it is good to have technology, but it's possible to like at points, times of crisis, such as what it feels like we're at now. And although people have said, Oh, we always feel that every generation thinks that they're the one because they know their own impending death is coming and they narrativise that into something social and global. Well, regardless, there's got to be a time where we start to introduce different ideas into our systems. It seems like there's room for that now, because we do live in a totally, a truly global culture, that there is the possibility for monoliths to introduce new innovation and there is nothing that can oppose it or regulate it. We're starting to see this kind of breakdown. So I'm interested in how we can individually prepare ourselves to organise society differently, to be able to overcome pretty superficial differences like, Oh, you go hunting, I don't go hunting. I think we give a fuck. Let's start talking about how we can organise the size where people who go hunting or don't go hunting can live peacefully in different ways, not entirely governed by a small cabal. And I'm sure power is more complex than that, that seem to be hugely biasing the direction of this so-called progress. I think you answered your own previous questions when you're talking about whether or not you can be spiritual and funny. And like, what are you doing? Can you carve that path out for yourself? That what you're doing there by explaining that would influence people, would give people a perspective that allows them to say, Yeah, like, why are we doing this? And what is the purpose of this? And if enough people hear those words and have that perspective introduced to them, it'll change the way they interact with the world. And that changes the world. It really does. And that's one of the more powerful things about discussions. When someone like you says something like that, and it resonates with people, and they start thinking like, why am I living like this? Like what if I only have, if I really do only have 50 years to live, why am I living these 50 years in some really unproductive bullshit way that's not satisfying at all? Because I just want a bigger house? Like, what is it? Do I want a faster car? Do I want a expensive piece of jewelry? Like what is, what is the purpose of this path that I'm on now, versus a path that I could be on? And what is the real conflict that we all experience between each other? Is it how much of it is due to a lack of communication? How much of it is due to a lack of real listening and understanding?