Hey everyone, Spartacus here for a fifteenth Spartacast.
It occurs to me that a lot of people out there are still unaware of the rapidly advancing state of biotechnology, particularly in the areas of synthetic biology and bionanotechnology. I figured that it would be a good idea to do a podcast where I quoted some statements that leading scientists, officials, and pundits have made on the topic, and then commented on what these statements mean when taken together.
Here's a quote from Ian F. Akyildiz’s 2020 paper published in IEEE, 6G and Beyond: The Future of Wireless Communications Systems:
“Highly relevant to IoNT, with its unique characteristics and applications, is the concept of the Internet of BioNanoThings (IoBNT). First introduced in 2015, the IoBNT has garnered significant traction in its efforts to synergistically combine telecommunications with healthcare solutions. The IoBNT is a network of molecules which can communicate with each other. The types of molecular communications include artificial cells which act as gateways to translate between different molecule types, or a bio-cyber interface which can convert molecular signals to electrical ones and transmit to external devices for further processing.
In applications relating to human healthcare, the IoBNT harbors many unique challenges and opportunities. First, the interdisciplinary research on both communications and data analytics can greatly facilitate the modeling of biological processes, including cancer cell formations and Alzheimer’s disease, and further design effective control measures for such diseases. Second, even though expressions of genetic codes at the cell and organ level can vary remarkably, in a manner analogous to various types of data applications in wireless networks, communication models can be developed and exploited to conceive a generally applicable health information framework. Third, the holistic network architecture envisioned in the IoBNT will integrate components at heterogeneous levels including within cells and among tissues, organs, as well as systems, before eventually connecting to the outside Internet for physicians to perform metric evaluations and propose treatment plans accordingly.”
What Ian Akyildiz has been working on is a means to turn digital signals into biochemical signals, such as cellular chemotaxis, biomolecular gradients, hormone releases, neurotransmitter releases, and so on, and to turn those signals back into digital information by monitoring the result in vivo. This necessarily requires a network of nanosensors to be implanted in the body.
Here’s another quote from Ian F. Akyildiz, from the 2015 paper in IEEE entitled The internet of Bio-Nano things, which is referenced by the previous article and further elaborates on the concept:
“A novel research direction in the engineering of nanoscale devices and systems is being pursued in the field of biology, by combining nanotechnology with tools from synthetic biology to control, reuse, modify, and reengineer biological cells. By stemming from an analogy between a biological cell and a typical IoT embedded computing device, a cell can be effectively utilized as a substrate to realize a so-called BioNanoThing, through the control, reuse, and reengineering of biological cells’ functionalities, such as sensing, actuation, processing, and communication. Since cells are based on biological molecules and biochemical reactions, rather than electronics, the concept of Internet of Bio-NanoThing (IoBNT), introduced in this article, is expected to be paradigm shifting for many related disciplines, such as communication and network engineering, which is the focus of this article.
The execution of DNA-based instructions, the biochemical processing of data, the transformation of chemical energy, and the exchange of information through the transmission and reception of molecules, termed molecular communication (MC), are at the basis of a plethora of applications that will be enabled by the IoBNT, such as: Intra-body sensing and actuation, where Bio-NanoThings inside the human body would collaboratively collect health-related information, transmit it to an external healthcare provider through the Internet, and execute commands from the same provider such as synthesis and release of drugs. Intra-body connectivity control, where BioNanoThings would repair or prevent failures in the communications between our internal organs, such as those based on the endocrine and the nervous systems, which are at the basis of many diseases. Environmental control and cleaning, where Bio-NanoThings deployed in the environment, such as a natural ecosystem, would check for toxic and pollutant agents, and collaboratively transform these agents through bioremediation, e.g. bacteria employed to clean oil spills.”
Here's a quote from a 2021 paper published in Cell’s Matter journal, entitled Nanotransducers for wireless neuromodulation:
“Nanomaterial transducers (nanotransducers) have emerged as a unique neuromodulation interface with the brain in the past 5–10 years, in order to overcome limitations of current neuromodulation techniques. The major advantages of nanotransducers is their small size and promise to greatly reduce immune response compared with large electrodes. Nanotransducers have the capability to wirelessly transduce external electric fields, light, magnetic fields, or ultrasound waves into a local signal (light, thermal, mechanical, electrical, or chemical) in the region of interest. For example, light can be converted into chemical signal, heat, mechanical force, and electric current or voltage by optical nanotransducers, such as semiconducting polymer nanoparticles. Similarly, magnetic nanotransducers can locally convert a magnetic field into electric current or voltage, heat, or mechanical force. The local stimulation leads to changes in the neuron activity through various mechanisms, including stimuli-responsive ion channels, G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), or transient membrane capacitance changes. The capability of nanotransducer-enabled neuromodulation is largely dependent on the nanotransducer properties and the interaction of nanotransducers with the brain.”
Here’s the abstract from a paper published in IEEE this year, by Sakhrat Khizroev and his colleagues, entitled Wireless Magnetoelectric Neural Interfaces:
“In the study of human physiology, the brain remains the last frontier. Wired electrode interfaces first developed in the 1960s endure to today as treatments for Parkinson’s, depression, paralysis and other neurological diseases and injuries. Unfortunately, the risks involved with implanting and replacing the electrodes in the brain confine it to niche, last resort cases for patients without functional drug-based treatments. In the effort to replace wired interfaces, magnetic fields have emerged alongside ultrasound and optogenetics as one of the leading paths forward. However, modern magnetic methods such as magnetomechanical and Transcranial Magnetic stimulation have tradeoffs with temporal and spatial resolution. Magnetoelectric nanoparticles (MENPs) can offer the best of both worlds, obtaining both spatial localization and temporal rapidness with particles small enough to pass the blood-brain barrier. MENPs efficiently convert non-tissue interacting magnetic fields into short range, stimulating electric fields. In this work, we demonstrate that MENPs can wirelessly modulate neuron firing in vitro and govern motor behavior in vivo in a controllable and reversible manner.”
What they are describing in these two articles is a means to manipulate the bioelectric activity of cells—not just neurons, but any cell transfected with or co-located with nanotransducers—by manipulating their ion channels and thus membrane potential. Now, with that in mind, here’s a quote from Michael Levin’s 2019 paper published in Elsevier’s Current Opinion in Genetics & Development journal, entitled Bioelectrical controls of morphogenesis: from ancient mechanisms of cell coordination to biomedical opportunities:
“In humans, several diseases and syndromes with characteristic phenotypic morphologies have now been mapped to proteins that modulate bioelectric state. The same study that implicated mutations in KCNH1 with epilepsy also showed affected individuals have finger shortening and characteristic facial features. Similarly, mutations in KCNJ6 potassium channel subunit are causative for another syndrome, Keppen-Lewbinsky, with a separate set of facial characteristics. These recent human studies highlight that patterning of the face, hands, and brain is exquisitely sensitive to bioelectrical controls during development. Recent work in the frog embryo model revealed why Kir2.1 mutations result in the distinctive craniofacial malformations that characterize ATS. In addition to bioelectricity influencing differentiation of osteoblasts, a prepattern of bioelectric regionalizations in the nascent face ectoderm is required for the normal demarcation of gene expression domains and subsequent morphogenesis. ATS is just one of many channelopathies with structural defects. Together these findings reveal that bioelectric states in the human embryo are an important part of normal development. Therefore, the data suggest that caution should be used when considering the use of drugs that target ion channels, or downstream neurotransmitter signaling, during pregnancy.”
As Levin’s ground-breaking work demonstrates, the bioelectric condition of cells doesn’t just affect their behavior individually, but collectively, in a way that guides the development and the morphology of the organism from the moment of conception. Controlling the membrane potential of cells with nanotransducers is not just a mind control technology. It’s a hypothetical means of controlling the behavior and development of cells from cradle to grave, period. Imagine what can be done to a developing embryo by this same exact technology.
Here's a quotation from Klaus Schwab, taken from his 2016 book, The Fourth Industrial Revolution:
“There is not one area of our personal and professional lives that cannot benefit from a better understanding of how our brain functions—at both the individual and collective levels. This is underscored by the fact that—over the past few years—two of the most funded research programs in the world are in brain sciences: The Human Brain Project (a €1 billion project over 10 years funded by the European Commission) and President Obama’s Brain Research Through Advancing Innovative Technologies (BRAIN) Initiative. Although these programs are primarily focused on scientific and medical research, we are also witnessing the rapid growth (and influence) of neurotechnologies in non-medical aspects of our lives. Neurotechnology consists of monitoring brain activity and looking at how the brain changes and/or interfaces with the world.”
Here’s another quotation from Klaus Schwab, taken from his 2018 book, Shaping the Future of the Fourth Industrial Revolution:
“Neurotechnologies matter for three reasons. First, the ability to “read and write to” the brain heralds new industries and systems for value creation, which will have deep social, political, and economic impacts. As with biotechnologies, the ability to correct deficiencies or add enhancements will be a huge boon for those wealthy enough to buy or sell neurotechnologies and associated services. At the same time, the ability to access a person’s innermost thoughts and influence his or her thinking is a huge concern in a world driven by algorithms and ubiquitous data collection. Could the next trending business model involve someone trading access to his or her thoughts for the time-saving option of typing a social media post by thought alone?”
Here's a quote from Yuval Noah Harari, taken from his 2015 book Homo Deus:
“So far we have looked at two of the three practical threats to liberalism: firstly, that humans will lose their value completely; secondly, that humans will still be valuable collectively, but will lose their individual authority, and instead be managed by external algorithms. The system will still need you to compose symphonies, teach history or write computer code, but it will know you better than you know yourself, and will therefore make most of the important decisions for you – and you will be perfectly happy with that. It won’t necessarily be a bad world; it will, however, be a post-liberal world.
The third threat to liberalism is that some people will remain both indispensable and undecipherable, but they will constitute a small and privileged elite of upgraded humans. These superhumans will enjoy unheard-of abilities and unprecedented creativity, which will allow them to go on making many of the most important decisions in the world. They will perform crucial services for the system, while the system could neither understand nor manage them. However, most humans will not be upgraded and will consequently become an inferior caste dominated by both computer algorithms and the new superhumans.”
Here's a quote from Miles Harmsworth on TaylorWessing’s website, in an article dated to earlier this year entitled How human are you? The Internet of Bodies is here, but are we ready?:
“In August 2022, the UK Law Society published a report on the potential impact of BCIs, identifying questions we need to consider before we begin to think about realising the potential benefits:
Criminal liability: What if a person commits a criminal act ‘under the influence’ of an implanted microchip? Who will be responsible? Was the person in control?
Employment: Will BCIs be available only to those that can afford it, leading to a world characterised by neurotechnological discrimination where employees with implants will be paid more resulting from their ability to ‘download’ more desirable skills; or will we have no choice in the matter and wearing a BCI will be a condition of employment?
Data protection: How can the user control what data leaves their BCI? If consent is relied upon, will it be valid? What can that data be used for? How do we ensure that data is kept secure – to date ‘hacking’ has only been thought of in a traditional computer context – but what about the brain?
Some of these questions will depend upon how we realise the technology in the context of military, health and consumer applications. While Neuralink and Synchron are focussing on health, companies like Facebook have been considering how to use brain data for marketing ads for some years. This being the case, it’s clear that regulation will be needed to ensure the safe deployment of the technology. The question then becomes when and how do we start?”
In the UK Ministry of Defence’s 2021 publication in partnership with the Bundeswehr, Human Augmentation – The Dawn of a New Paradigm, you can find the following quotation:
“The need to use human augmentation may ultimately be dictated by national interest. Countries may need to develop and use human augmentation or risk surrendering influence, prosperity and security to those who will. National regulations dictating the pace and scope of scientific research reflect societal views, particularly in democracies that are more sensitive to public opinion. The future of human augmentation should not, however, be decided by ethicists or public opinion, although both will be important voices; rather, governments will need to develop a clear policy position that maximises the use of human augmentation in support of prosperity, safety, and security, without undermining our values.”
Right there, they’re saying that ethicists and public opinion should not decide the future of human augmentation, which implies that they want to do things with this technology that they know will be unpopular and unethical. This sort of thinking sets a very disturbing precedent.
Here’s a quotation from Policy Horizons Canada’s 2020 page on Exploring Biodigital Convergence:
“Digital technology can be embedded in organisms, and biological components can exist as parts of digital technologies. The physical meshing, manipulating, and merging of the biological and digital are creating new hybrid forms of life and technology, each functioning in the tangible world, often with heightened capabilities.”
This is a nascent area of study, however, machine learning may rapidly accelerate developments in the areas of cell and tissue engineering, de novo gene and protein design and synthesis, integration of biocompatible circuitry and artificial nanostructures with living cells, and so on. The implication here is that living beings and their genetic code can be reduced to data, and therefore, these things are subject to analysis and AI inference like any other form of data, and the transformed data can be converted back into living organisms, and so on. This is what they mean by biodigital convergence. In fact, this sentiment is echoed in Klaus Schwab’s own writings, where he makes reference to the fusion of the physical, digital, and biological on multiple occasions, particularly in reference to the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution. The applications of synthetic biology range from the semi-innocuous, like enzymatic biomanufacturing of advanced materials, or the bioremediation of pollutants, or the manufacturing of safe and effective biologic drugs, or the development of advanced biocomputers, to the nefarious, like engineering gene-targeted ethnic bioweapons, controlling people’s cells without their consent, and so on.
Here's a rather chilling quote taken from Armin Krishnan’s 2016 book, Military Neuroscience and the Coming Age of Neurowarfare:
“There are strong indicators that controlling large and impoverished populations will become a key challenge in the twenty-first century, as there is a combination of factors that will over time exacerbate already existing problems of overpopulation, resource scarcity, unemployment and failing systems of governance around the world. These problems will be made worse by covert aggression and deliberate destabilization by a variety of state and nonstate actors. The impacts will not be limited to the developing world, although they will be felt most severely there. Western governments seem to be already preparing for mass civil unrest, if not the threat of civil war. For this reason, any technologies and methods that can reduce or otherwise combat political extremism and generally calm populations will be extremely important for the future. There can be little doubt that neuro S/T will play an important role in the homeland security domain, which could make the use of direct force unnecessary.”
If you take their words at face value, then it is very clear that the Overclass intend to divide humanity into biologically and physically separate castes, like Huxley’s Brave New World, and bring about a post-political, post-liberal, post-industrial society where insect-eating plebeians are governed by AI algorithms that have a direct window inside their bodies and can read and modify their internal states. The way they get policymakers and the military onboard is by insisting that the adoption of these technologies is a national security issue; that nations that don’t adopt human augmentation technology will be left behind and dominated politically, economically, socially, and militarily by those that do. Therefore, they argue that we should ignore valid complaints raised by pesky bioethicists and plow straight ahead into making test tube babies with wires in their heads. If nothing else, the augmented humans will be more compliant with the overall agenda and less given to unrest, unlike the unreliable, unpredictable, fractious, wild-type human who insists on silly things like rights and sovereignty. In their view, this will counteract issues of failing governance by making a more governable model of human being.
When taken to their logical conclusion, these statements, and the overall direction of the science—particularly in the areas of bionanotechnology, synthetic biology, brain-computer interfaces, and other areas of biomedical advancement that can be used in human augmentation—imply that reengineering human beings for biopolitical purposes is not off the table. This is a slippery slope. It’s a quest for unattainable perfection. Once you have a generation of humans that is modified to be more docile and obedient towards authority figures—less aggressive, less self-interested, and so on—this will have second and third-order effects on the course of future, continuing augmentation.
Human augmentation is not a one-and-done thing. It is an ongoing process. The augmented humans of 2040 would seem laughably primitive next to the augmented humans of 2100, who will, in turn, seem like troglodytes to the augmented humans of 2500, if they could even be called human anymore, at that point. Where does it end? When man is reduced to a limbless and sessile flesh-sack, supreme in his cognitive powers and incapable of causing physical harm to anyone? Or does it end when we abandon our fallible meat-bodies, become substrate-independent minds, and reside in metaverse-like paradise simulations full-time, through virtual embodiment? Where does it end? What is the final outcome? If things continue on the present course, then what will humanity even look like in a mere thirty years?
This is not a conspiracy theory. The term conspiracy theory implies that there is a hypothetical conspiracy. This is not hypothetical. We are beyond the point where it could be called a hypothesis. This is what the conspirators and the people analyzing and/or contributing to their activities sound like, in their own words. If dozens of people in lofty positions of power and authority are all saying the same exact things about algorithmic governance, mind control, and using bionanotechnology to split humans into distinct biological castes, that’s not a conspiracy theory. That’s a conspiracy fact. The only reason why anyone would label any of this a conspiracy theory is if they dream of implementing all of these things without a concerted public backlash, and they would rather that people remain docile and unaware as their fundamental rights—even their own bodily autonomy—are slowly stripped away from them, and they have resorted to gaslighting people to make that totalitarian dream a reality.
Klaus Schwab’s COVID-19: The Great Reset is chock-full of predictions that didn’t come true, written by the world’s foremost coattail-hanger. For example:
Klaus stated that the response to the pandemic would bring about more welfare for the poor. Instead, it transferred trillions of dollars from the poor to the rich and led to the theft of hundreds of billions of dollars in aid money.
Klaus stated that so-called “fragile” countries, such as African nations with systemic poverty, would suffer the effects of the pandemic the worst. On the contrary, COVID-19 didn’t affect poor African nations nearly as much as it affected affluent ones with lots of older people in failing health.
Klaus predicted that Weimar-style hyperinflation of the US Dollar could be avoided. Instead, we are seeing signs of Weimar-style hyperinflation, as the purchasing power of the dollar shrinks, and the prices of basic staple goods begin to skyrocket.
Klaus predicted that the USD would retain its currency hegemony. Instead, many nations are seriously considering dedollarization.
Klaus predicted that the shocks from the pandemic would lead to a resurgence in global governance and a consolidation of power by supranationals. Instead, there is a massive populist backlash directed at him in particular.
The fact that this bloviating hack spewing page after page of wishful thinking and dreaming up totalitarian uses for mad science he barely understands was able to tug the ears of so many politicians the world over is a sad indictment of the utterly dysfunctional system in which we live. In his writings, Klaus Schwab believes that he makes a case for more globalism, more internationalism, and more top-down management of society by supranational interests. Instead, he makes a perfect case for localism and returning the power of self-determination to the people where it belongs.
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