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This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading. Currently can only be used by a single user (myself), but I plan to extend it to support multiple users eventually.

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189

Toward an Intelligible Society

1
terms
4
notes

Pasquale, F. (2015). Toward an Intelligible Society. In Pasquale, F. The Black Box Society: The Secret Algorithms That Control Money and Information. Harvard University Press, pp. 189-319

191

The importance of credit reputation grows as public assistance shrinks. Austerity promotes loans as a lifeline for an insecure precariat. Students who once earned state scholarships are now earning profits for government or private lenders. In our “market state” and “ownership society,” private credit rather than public grant is the key to opportunity. Would-be homeowners, students, and the very poor are forced back on commercial credit to buy places to live, to prepare for careers, or even just to pay the costs of day-to-day living. By and large, private lenders are simply looking to generate more private wealth, rather than to invest long term in individuals or communities. [...]

—p.191 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago

The importance of credit reputation grows as public assistance shrinks. Austerity promotes loans as a lifeline for an insecure precariat. Students who once earned state scholarships are now earning profits for government or private lenders. In our “market state” and “ownership society,” private credit rather than public grant is the key to opportunity. Would-be homeowners, students, and the very poor are forced back on commercial credit to buy places to live, to prepare for careers, or even just to pay the costs of day-to-day living. By and large, private lenders are simply looking to generate more private wealth, rather than to invest long term in individuals or communities. [...]

—p.191 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago
196

It is not helpful to have politicians across the political spectrum meekly submitting to this technolibertarianism—assuming that bureaucrats, and by extension themselves, are inherently incapable of influencing technical innovation. We must curb the tendency to reify the tech giants—to assume that their largely automated ways of processing disputes or handling customer inquiries are, inevitably, the way things are and must always be. Until we do, we enforce upon ourselves an unnecessary helplessness, and a self-incurred tutelage.

The arbitrariness of many forms of reputation creation is becoming clearer all the time. I will not recapitulate here the problems of discrimination (racial, political, economic, and competitive) that we examined earlier. Unfairness in today’s Internet industries should be obvious by now, and is another important reason to be wary of reification. “The Internet” is a human invention, and can be altered by humans. [...]

Our technologies are just as much a product of social, market, and political forces as they are the outgrowth of scientific advance. They are intimately embedded in social practices that rely on human judgment. [...]

—p.196 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago

It is not helpful to have politicians across the political spectrum meekly submitting to this technolibertarianism—assuming that bureaucrats, and by extension themselves, are inherently incapable of influencing technical innovation. We must curb the tendency to reify the tech giants—to assume that their largely automated ways of processing disputes or handling customer inquiries are, inevitably, the way things are and must always be. Until we do, we enforce upon ourselves an unnecessary helplessness, and a self-incurred tutelage.

The arbitrariness of many forms of reputation creation is becoming clearer all the time. I will not recapitulate here the problems of discrimination (racial, political, economic, and competitive) that we examined earlier. Unfairness in today’s Internet industries should be obvious by now, and is another important reason to be wary of reification. “The Internet” is a human invention, and can be altered by humans. [...]

Our technologies are just as much a product of social, market, and political forces as they are the outgrowth of scientific advance. They are intimately embedded in social practices that rely on human judgment. [...]

—p.196 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago
199

[...] Above all, what are these giant salaries and bonuses really for? What value does society derive from the work that they theoretically compensate?

referring specifically to finance but applies everywhere tbh

—p.199 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago

[...] Above all, what are these giant salaries and bonuses really for? What value does society derive from the work that they theoretically compensate?

referring specifically to finance but applies everywhere tbh

—p.199 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago

(foreign term) right-minded; one who holds orthodox views

211

while these proposals will sound excessively statist to bien-pensant economists, consider the alternatives.

—p.211 by Frank Pasquale
uncertain
1 year, 2 months ago

while these proposals will sound excessively statist to bien-pensant economists, consider the alternatives.

—p.211 by Frank Pasquale
uncertain
1 year, 2 months ago
211

“Leaving it to the finance experts” is a recipe for decline, because the success of the finance industry bears no inevitable relationship to the long-term health of the economy. Finance can be extractive or uplifting, narrowly short-termist or focused on the infrastructural and investment needs of society as a whole. To address those needs consistently, we need a government interested in forward-thinking industrial policy, and willing to enforce its interest. [...]

—p.211 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago

“Leaving it to the finance experts” is a recipe for decline, because the success of the finance industry bears no inevitable relationship to the long-term health of the economy. Finance can be extractive or uplifting, narrowly short-termist or focused on the infrastructural and investment needs of society as a whole. To address those needs consistently, we need a government interested in forward-thinking industrial policy, and willing to enforce its interest. [...]

—p.211 by Frank Pasquale 1 year, 2 months ago