QUAY: Conservatives Should Side With Whiny, Liberal Actors In The Hollywood Strike

(Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP) (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Grayson Quay News & Opinion Editor
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The most insufferable people in America are on strike, demanding protections against artificial intelligence, and it’s the duty of every conservative to support them.

Yes, Hollywood actors are awful. They use poor women as brood mares, trans their kids, fly around on private jets, run interference for sex abusers and still insist on lecturing us about our moral shortcomings. 

And yes, screenwriters are almost as bad. None of them have produced an original idea since 2008, but they continue doubling and tripling down on woke garbage even as movie after movie bombs at the box office. (RELATED: Americans Unleash Financial Devastation On Feminized ‘Indiana Jones’)

And yes, it’s insufferable to watch these elitist swine swagger around like they’re West Virginia coal miners shooting it out with the Pinkertons in 1921.

For now, though, the enemy of our enemy is our friend, and AI is the enemy of all humanity.

“[A]rtificial intelligence poses an existential threat to creative professions, and all actors and performers deserve contract language that protects them from having their identity and talent exploited without consent and pay,” President Fran Drescher of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) explained

The Writer’s Guild of America presented similar demands, pushing for an agreement under which “AI can’t write or rewrite literary material; can’t be used as source material; and MBA-covered [contract-covered] material can’t be used to train AI.”

It’s easy to see what AI could do to the film industry. In the futuristic society of Margaret Atwood’s novel “Oryx and Crake,” it pretty much no longer exists. Anyone can generate any movie they want by feeding a few prompts into an AI program. “Hey, computer,” I might say, “make me a medieval heist movie starring Laurence Olivier, Paul Walker and 1997 George Clooney with Tarantino dialogue and the directing style of Jean-Luc Goddard.” Give it a few hours to process, and presto! the movie’s ready to go without anyone making a dime off it — except, of course, the studio.

Not only would this state of affairs rob established writers and directors of just compensation and make it harder for up-and-comers to find work, it would also discourage innovation, leaving the film industry even more creatively bankrupt than it already is.

But it’s not just Hollywood. AI will devastate the entire arts industry. ChatGPT might not be able to write the great American novel, but the formulaic romance and spy novels that line the Wal-Mart bookshelves will be well within its power. Some New York gallery snobs might still value human-made art, but AI-generated images will work just fine for book covers, lobby décor and portrait commissions. Could AI write Beethoven’s 7th or Sufjan Stevens’ “Carrie & Lowell”? Maybe not. But it can definitely provide background noise while you work in your cubicle or hang out at the bar.

It won’t stop with the arts either. Truck drivers? Fired. Call center employees? Fired. Most journalists? Fired. Sure, we’ll still need plumbers, landscapers, nail technicians and maybe a few lawyers (though not nearly as many as before), but it’s entirely possible that almost everyone you know will be out of a job.

You might think that this wouldn’t be so bad. AI can perform the services, manufacture the goods, manage the supply chain and even plan the economy for us (Hayek’s knowledge problem could well become obsolete) while the great mass of the unemployed live on a universal basic income dividend from all that automated productivity. (RELATED: ‘I Warned You Guys’: ‘Terminator’ Director Expresses Concern About AI Takeover)

Now, I know what you’re thinking. This sounds like “Star Trek” (or Oscar Wilde’s “The Soul of Man Under Socialism”). Freed from drudgery, people could devote their energies to self-actualization. Study opera. Learn to sculpt. Read Dante in the original Italian. Plant a garden and enjoy its fruits. For the first time in history, everyone would have access to the contemplative, aristocratic pleasures of a Seneca or a Montaigne.

Yeah … That’s not what’ll happen. If you’re not familiar with “limbic capitalism yet, it’s a phrase worth knowing. According to author David Courtwright, who coined the term, limbic capitalism “refers to a technologically advanced but socially regressive business system in which global industries, often with the help of complicit governments … encourage excessive consumption and addiction.”

In other words, big business hacks your dopamine receptors to get you hooked on their products, and since big business has all the lobbying money, government won’t step in to protect you. PornHub, Instagram and Frito-Lay already operate on this principle. And in a world where everyone has plenty of disposable income, unlimited free time and no responsibilities, there’d be no limit to it.

You ever get sucked into one of those stupid pay-to-win smartphone games? Now imagine the whole economy’s like that. Far from creating a population of scholars and artisans, fully automated luxury communism would make us even fatter, dumber and more porn-addicted than we already are.

And that’s only the best-case scenario. Maybe, as AI researcher Eliezer Yudkowsky predicts, it’ll just kill us all instead. In fact, Yudkowsky is so sure AI will kill us all that he thinks we should bomb AI labs in China, even if it provokes a nuclear response.

Or maybe it’ll just usher in the reign of the antichrist. Yuval Noah Harari noted in May that “[t]hroughout history, religions dreamt about having a book written by a superhuman intelligence, by a non-human entity,” and that with AI, “[t]his could become true very, very quickly.” Do you want global techno-satanism? Because that’s how you get global techno-satanism. (RELATED: ‘Making Jesus In Their Own Image’: Left-Wing Groups Are Using AI To Rewrite The Bible And Talk To ‘God’)

If any of that sounds bad to you, then we need to crush the head of the AI serpent while it’s still in the shell. So far, there aren’t many takers for Yudkowski’s Butlerian jihad. This means that, for now anyway, supporting the Hollywood strike is the best way to fight back against the coming dystopia.

Grayson Quay is an editor at the Daily Caller.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.