How to Tamper With Your Legacy
What do Steve Smith, Barnaby Joyce, Harvey Weinstein and Martha Stewart all have in common?
Like so many other celebrities, politicians, business-people and app developers, they don't think the rules should apply to them.
The farcical level of disrepute the Australian cricket team brought to their sport today was yet another example of arrogant humans in a position of power or superiority choosing to believe they are above the law.
In this absurd case, only the laws of cricket, but it simply highlights the recurring theme that human beings will always try to find ways to cheat to benefit themselves.
Whether it be trying to win a game, trying to make money, trying to get sex, trying to take power, nothing changes. We establish rules for ourselves, then we break them.
It's not only those in power. You probably break rules too. Pirating software, using a phone while driving, printing personal documents on the office printer, self-scanning expensive produce for lower prices, overestimating work-related expenses on your tax return.
Not everyone, of course, but enough for a pattern to emerge.
Human beings are cheaters, it's biological. We wouldn't be where we are without pushing the boundaries. The first fish to walk on land was breaking the rules. How did mammoths feel when we cheated and used stone tools? How many steps forward has our species taken by trying to gain an unfair advantage?
It doesn't excuse the modern day cheats, they should know better. We all should, but the justifications they made would be like the ones in everyone else's head when we break the rules. Psychological camouflage for what's really happening under the hood. The only thing between you and what you want is an abstract concept and a perceptible risk.
So should we just cheat? Everyone drop the act, step back to survival of the fittest?
It depends how much longer we want to survive on this planet. The evolutions of our technology has outpaced our own. We wield power beyond what our meaty brains can holistically understand.
Funnily enough, we're actually heading in the right direction. Every time corruption or deception generates public attention, it indicates we're coming closer to self-governance. It might seem slow, or overwhelming, but it's happening.
Of course, the better we govern ourselves, the more innovative cheaters will become. We've seen that this week too, regarding revelations about Cambridge Analytica, and the evidence of flaws in our social media platforms.
My preference would be for a global AI to take charge, but I don't think we've progressed to that stage yet. It would probably turn on us, or never get out of beta while project costs spiral higher. More likely, it will be hit with security flaws, or someone will find loopholes.
Sadly, that's what we do.