|Performance of military personnel can slump if the demands of the job become too intense. The study found that electrical brain stimulation can stave off the drop in performance. Photograph: Christian Science Monitor/Getty|
(Stillness in the Storm Editor) According to several patents in the public domain and whistleblower testimony, the military industrial complex developed advanced electromagnetic consciousness entrainment technology (not an official term) four decades ago. According to Steven Greer, since as early as the 1950s technology has been perfected that has the capacity to transmit a false experience into a target’s mind that is indistinguishable from reality. If true, then the device discussed below that produces transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is likely the tip of a very large iceberg, one that has yet to be fully disclosed to the public.
The device’s stated purpose is to help maintain productivity in service people who perform multiple tasks over a long period of time. As one might expect, repetitive tasks tend to be boring and under-stimulating—as human beings weren’t designed to act like robots. But the powers that be, and society in general, tends to consider people as nothing more than biological machines—despite evidence suggesting there is more to consciousness. Merging technology with biology could provide a way to maintain productivity by stimulating the brain and enhancing focus as a result.
But at what cost? And, is there a more secretive long-term agenda?
The transhumanist philosophy supposes that human beings are an outdated and ultimately broken species that must find a way to change itself artificially or face extinction. It assumes that merging with technology and eventually transitioning away from biology entirely is a good ideal to strive for. But often the transcendent self-evolving nature of consciousness—when applied organically—is overlooked. In addition, consciousness appears to favor autonomy and self-mastery, leading towards ever-increasing degrees of mental, physical and spiritual acuity.
But in an authoritarian hierarchical society, a population that can think for itself and critically access an order or project’s validity is destructive. The military, in particular, is a social structure that must ensure those within their ranks don’t question orders or think for themselves. Developing ways to suppress curiosity, critical thinking, and autonomy are within the interests of those in control of the military industrial complex.
While a nefarious agenda may not have inspired the technology developed for tDCS, it can most certainly be used to advance the transhumanist goals of some in society. Imagine if machines could be employed that would substantially increase a workforce’s capacity to perform mundane tasks. What if instead of replacing jobs with robotics, one could simply use a device that made people work like a machine? Eventually, those who chose not to undergo such a procedure would find themselves at a disadvantage, and a dystopian divide between organic and cybernetic humans would emerge—not unlike what science fiction has explored in many books and films, such as Elysium.
It appears that research centers like DARPA and others have been developing robotic technology for decades, and the military has already stated it will use more robots than humans by 2025.
The US Army will have “more combat robots than it will have humans” by 2025, former UK intelligence officer John Bassett told officials at a counter-terrorism meeting in London, according to media reports. (Source).
But at what cost? And will this be one step closer to a transhumanist world where eventually cybernetic human beings become a superior race, eventually leaving those who seek organic evolution in the dust?
While transhumanism’s goals are the betterment of life for humanity, it comes at the cost of reduced freedom and tolerance. Instead of humanity gaining more liberty, they will become dependent on technology for survival itself, and eventually an artificially intelligent (AI) computer will be needed to manage everything. The singularity spoken of by Ray Kurzweil is the point when human biology is transcended by AI and a merger with machines takes place.
Of course, this isn’t to say that technology in and of itself is evil. It is only when developments lead to greater dependence and reduced human expression that, as a society, one would do well to question such “advancements.” Additionally, consider that for most of human history, the elite—whether overtly or covertly—have maintained control over the masses by suppressing free will.
Thus, will this technology lead to enhanced freedoms or reduce them? And is this a partial disclosure of a much greater level of advancement that has taken place behind closed doors through Unacknowledged Special Acess Programs?
by Ian Sample, November 7th 2016
Study paves way for personnel such as drone operators to have electrical pulses sent into their brains to improve effectiveness in high pressure situations.
US military scientists have used electrical brain stimulators to enhance mental skills of staff, in research that aims to boost the performance of air crews, drone operators and others in the armed forces’ most demanding roles.
The successful tests of the devices pave the way for servicemen and women to be wired up at critical times of duty, so that electrical pulses can be beamed into their brains to improve their effectiveness in high pressure situations.
The brain stimulation kits use five electrodes to send weak electric currents through the skull and into specific parts of the cortex. Previous studies have found evidence that by helping neurons to fire, these minor brain zaps can boost cognitive ability.
The technology is seen as a safer alternative to prescription drugs, such as modafinil and ritalin, both of which have been used off-label as performance enhancing drugs in the armed forces.
But while electrical brain stimulation appears to have no harmful side effects, some experts say its long-term safety is unknown, and raise concerns about staff being forced to use the equipment if it is approved for military operations.
Others are worried about the broader implications of the science on the general workforce because of the advance of an unregulated technology.
In a new report, scientists at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio describe how the performance of military personnel can slump soon after they start work if the demands of the job become too intense.
“Within the air force, various operations such as remotely piloted and manned aircraft operations require a human operator to monitor and respond to multiple events simultaneously over a long period of time,” they write. “With the monotonous nature of these tasks, the operator’s performance may decline shortly after their work shift commences.”
But in a series of experiments at the air force base, the researchers found that electrical brain stimulation can improve people’s multitasking skills and stave off the drop in performance that comes with information overload. Writing in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, they say that the technology, known as transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), has a “profound effect”.
For the study, the scientists had men and women at the base take a test developed by Nasa to assess multitasking skills. The test requires people to keep a crosshair inside a moving circle on a computer screen, while constantly monitoring and responding to three other tasks on the screen.
To investigate whether tDCS boosted people’s scores, half of the volunteers had a constant two milliamp current beamed into the brain for the 36-minute-long test. The other half formed a control group and had only 30 seconds of stimulation at the start of the test.
According to the report, the brain stimulation group started to perform better than the control group four minutes into the test. “The findings provide new evidence that tDCS has the ability to augment and enhance multitasking capability in a human operator,” the researchers write. Larger studies must now look at whether the improvement in performance is real and, if so, how long it lasts.
The tests are not the first to claim beneficial effects from electrical brain stimulation. Last year, researchers at the same US facility found that tDCS seemed to work better than caffeine at keeping military target analysts vigilant after long hours at the desk. Brain stimulation has also been tested for its potential to help soldiers spot snipers more quickly in VR training programmes.
Neil Levy, deputy director of the Oxford Centre for Neuroethics, said that compared with prescription drugs, electrical brain stimulation could actually be a safer way to boost the performance of those in the armed forces. “I have more serious worries about the extent to which participants can give informed consent, and whether they can opt out once it is approved for use,” he said. “Even for those jobs where attention is absolutely critical, you want to be very careful about making it compulsory, or there being a strong social pressure to use it, before we are really sure about its long-term safety.”
But while the devices may be safe in the hands of experts, the technology is freely available, because the sale of brain stimulation kits is unregulated. They can be bought on the internet or assembled from simple components, which raises a greater concern, according to Levy. Young people whose brains are still developing may be tempted to experiment with the devices, and try higher currents than those used in laboratories, he says. “If you use high currents you can damage the brain,” he says.
In 2014 another Oxford scientist, Roi Cohen Kadosh, warned that while brain stimulation could improve performance at some tasks, it made people worse at others. In light of the work, Kadosh urged people not to use brain stimulators at home.
If the technology is proved safe in the long run though, it could help those who need it most, said Levy. “It may have a levelling-up effect, because it is cheap and enhancers tend to benefit the people that perform less well,” he said.
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