Bill Kochevar just scooped a forkful of mashed potatoes into his own mouth. No cause for celebration, you say? Well, it is when you consider that Kochevar is a quadriplegic, paralyzed below his shoulders in a cycling accident eight years ago. He hasn’t scooped a forkful of mashed potatoes or anything else into his own mouth since then.
So what changed? Just the two pill-sized, 96-channel electrode arrays implanted on the surface of his brain by a team of neurosurgeons. Well, that and the 36-electrode “muscle activation system” that helps translate Kochevar’s thoughts into muscular activity.
As Case Western Reserve University, which directed the research leading to this momentous forkful, explains in their press release on the case: “The arrays record brain signals created when Kochevar imagines movement of his own arm and hand. The brain-computer interface extracts information from the brain signals about what movements he intends to make, then passes the information to command the electrical stimulation system.”
It’s hard to dispute that this is anything short of a modern medical miracle…
…which is exactly why we’re going to be hearing a lot more about these “making quadriplegics walk again” stories in the near future, and a lot less about the truly horrific potential of the brain/computer interface technologies that are slowly being revealed to the public.
Neural smart dust? Mind reading technologies? Tranhumanism? Never mind all that, look at this cripple type! What have you got against paralyzed people, you bigoted, heartless monster!
Enter Elon Musk. As we should all know by now, he’s the huckster behind multiple government-sponsored Ponzi schemes that he can strategically exit when times get tough, leaving taxpayers holding the bag.
Having made his first $22 million with the sale of his “Zip2” web software company in February 1999, Musk launched X.com, one of the first online financial service companies, the following month. X.com then merged with its main competitor, Confinity, which had a money transfer service called PayPal. Musk served as CEO of the PayPal conglomerate until 2000 and remained its largest shareholder until it was bought out by eBay in 2002 for a cool $1.5 billion. Musk pocketed $165 million from the deal.
From there, Musk founded SpaceX, which borrows money from the government at ridiculously low interest rates, and Tesla, which borrows money from the government at ridiculously low interest rates, and SolarCity, which borrows from SpaceX and Tesla. Neither Tesla nor SolarCity actually make money, but in the age of entities like YouTube, which boasts a billion users but still has “no timetable” on reaching profitability, perhaps we can chalk that up to the “new normal.”
As MarketSlant noted in their expose of Musk’s three-way government-sponsored arbitrage scheme last fall: “Elon Musk now has 2 companies that do not make money [Tesla and SolarCity]. He has 1 that makes money from prepayments for services yet to be given [SpaceX]. All are financed by the US taxpayer at ridiculously below market rates. The table is now set for financing using inflated currency (sound familiar?) in the form of Tesla stock to get real cash in Mr. Musk’s pockets.”
Now the story of how Musk parlayed his government-created Tesla fortune to help bail out his government-sponsored SpaceX venture through his SolarCity venture is a fascinating example of a multi-billion dollar shell game in action, but that misses the point. The real question to ask is how this PhD dropout from nowhere in particular was able to found a financial service company in the late 1990s that received FDIC insurance. Or how he worked out the exceptionally low financing from the government for his SpaceX venture. Or how he then managed to bilk another $5 billion out of Uncle Sam to underwrite his (unprofitable) Tesla venture.
If you answered by saying that all of these unlikely business ventures would have been impossible for the average, unconnected Joe Schmoe, you’d be completely right. But Musk is not the average, unconnected Joe Schmoe. He’s like Beelzebub, popping up every time the worlds of government funding, military research and Bilderberg technocrats collide.
When convicted IMF criminal Christine Lagarde, World Bank head Jim Kim and 100 other global misleaders gathered in the UAE for the World Government Summit earlier this year (yes, there really is such a thing), there was Musk, arguing that humans will have to merge with machines as they work toward the world government utopia.
And now that brain/computer interface technologies are making headlines, here’s Musk to cash in on the trend. And, as usual, he has big-name financial support backing him.
The new venture is called “Neuralink.” It is being billed as a “medical research company” working on crafting brain-computer interface technology. As with everything else surrounding everything Musk ever does, the orgy of publicity for Neuralink in the mainstream press has made this new company sound like the most blockbuster, game-changing business venture since…well, since Musk’s last venture. You know, the one about boring tunnels…or something. Or was that a joke?
Neuralink is touting the idea of “neural lace,” an imaginary invention from the science fiction of British novelist Iain M. Banks. Neural lace refers to a semi-organic mesh that is grown on the cerebral cortex, allowing for a direct brain-computer interface. Lost in the hype over Musk’s announcement of Neuralink this week is that neural lace-type research has already been going on for years and the “invention of neural lace” was first announced in 2015. But here comes Musk to bring the conversation into the public arena, and oh, by the way, cure Parkinson’s along the way. Or something like that.
It’s important to understand that what we are witnessing is the thin edge of a massive public indoctrination campaign to love and accept the brain chip. As far-fetched as that may sound to people who aren’t paying attention, I assure you that we are closer to the implementation of this technology than many would like to believe.
It’s been a full 50 years since Jose Delgado demonstrated the ability to stop a charging bull dead in his tracks via electrodes implanted in his brain.
It’s been 15 years since researchers announced the birth of the “Robo Rat,” a radio-controlled rat that could be steered in any direction by implanting electrodes in its brain.
And it’s been 5 years since the first online tutorials appeared teaching enterprising young children how to remotely control cockroaches by way of some simple neurosurgery and repurposed Hexburg circuit boards.
But if you think this child’s play is the cutting edge of brain-computer interface technology, then you haven’t been keeping up with the latest research.
Our good friends at DARPA (yes, that DARPA) have pumped hundreds of millions of dollars into their “Brain Initiative,” a research initiative to map, understand and manipulate the brain, including a project to design implants that monitor and analyze brain activity in real time and multiple programs for increasing the speed and reducing the size of brain-computer interface technology.
“Neural dust,” tiny devices that can be implanted in the human body to analyze its activity, already exist, and are already as small as a grain of sand. As the name implies, the goal is further miniaturization to enable implantation directly in the brain.
Meanwhile, Musk’s old company, Paypal, is musing about brain implants as the best solution to the problem of having to remember all those pesky passwords.
These technologies are already here, they just need a dynamic, PR-friendly face to sell them to the public. And that is Elon Musk’s role in this.
It wouldn’t be the first time that Musk has been at the forefront of preparing the public, problem-reaction-solution style, for a future they would otherwise never accept. Remember how world government proponent Stephen Hawking and billionaire eugenicist Bill Gates joined Musk in warning us all about the potential species-ending threat of AI in 2015? And remember how Musk then formed “OpenAI,” a non-profit research company, to help develop AI technology in an open, transparent, responsible, accountable way so we can all breathe easy? And remember how Bilderberger Peter Thiel helped bankroll that initiative?
Well, have you seen what conclusion Musk has come to about what we need to do to solve the AI problem? Why, merge with the machines, of course! (If you can’t beat ’em, become ’em, hey?!)
Problem. Reaction. Solution.
And now we have brain-computer interfaces that are helping the paralyzed to move and promising to cure Parkinson’s and revolutionize medicine in all sorts of other amazing ways. And those promises are real, and they’re here, and they’re important.
But this technology comes as a double-edged sword, and when that sword is wielded for evil, the possibility for outright control of the human species (or the new cyborg subspecies, or whatever is being created) is there, too, and it’s being overseen by friendly government/military agencies like DARPA.
Oh, but here’s the best part: Neuralink is being backed by Bilderberger Peter Thiel, too.
So, who wants to be the first to volunteer to have a brain chip implanted by the Bilderbergers? It’s for a good cause, honest…