The Alternative UK Manifestos. 13: David Wood - the state of Transpolitica
Our 13th and final Alternative UK Manifesto comes from David Wood. David is a technology and futures consultant, one of the founders of the early mobile operating system Symbian, and currently convenes London Futurists, one of the most vital communities of its kind in the UK.
He is also an author - most recently The Abolition of Ageing, but also the forthcoming Transpolitica, where he subjects contemporary politics to the test of exponential technological and social change - and finds it pretty wanting. Here's his manifesto for the current election, on that theme.
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David Wood: the state of Transpolitica
Transpolitica urges serious attention, in the run-up to GE2017, to a number of potential existential issues. We need politicians who will commit to devoting significant energies to developing practical plans to enable the following:
1) Next generation green technologies, including those for better storage and transmission of clean energy
2) Healthcare solutions that address the causes of ill-health and disease, rather than just trying to patch people up after the onset of chronic illness – these solutions include regenerative medicine and other rejuvenation therapies, to be made available and affordable to every citizen
3) Radical solutions, as a subset of the previous case, for the growing crisis of mental ill-health, including dementia, as well as depression
4) Transitioning society away from one in which we live to work (with the aim of near full employment) to one in which we live to flourish (with the aim of near full unemployment). This transition may become especially pressing, with the rapid onset of technological unemployment and technological under-employment in the wake of robots, AI, and other automation
5) Foreseeing and forestalling the risks to societal well-being from widespread surveillance (by both corporations and governments), and from pervasive online infrastructures that are increasingly vulnerable to security flaws and other errors in software implementation (including powerful AI algorithms that operate with unexpected biases)
6) Mechanisms for better debates on political topics – debates freed from distortions such as fake news, deliberately misleading statements, overly powerful press barons, deceptive intentions being kept hidden, and the flaws of the “first past the post” election system
7) Mechanisms for effective international collaboration, that supersede and/or improve upon the existing troubled operations of the UN, the IMF, and more local organisations such as the EU.