Abraham Maslow's later work was really weird.
We briefly discussed this interview on the Discord server before, and I think I did a poor job1 of explaining why this interview reveals so much. So I will try again.
What makes this piece interesting is not the interviewer. In fact, the interviewer is so bad at their job that I want to reach through time and space and (attempt to) beat the stupid out of them. I mean, look at some of this shit:
What possible point is there to asking these questions? Either Brad Parscale was part of a massive criminal conspiracy with the Russians to undermine the American electoral system, in which case he would say exactly what he said above, or he wasn't, in which case he would say exactly what he said above. What possible purpose could this serve? I want to know what is wrong with this person. Brian Blessed wants to know too.
Ignore all the parts of the interview that are about this shit. It's obviously pointless.
Fortunately, the fact that the interviewer was too unprofessional to avoid wasting everyone's time with idiocy did not prevent Brad Parscale from stating what he came to the interview to say:
OK, you got that? Facebook was the centerpiece of Trump's campaign and eventual victory. It's all about Facebook. That's what the Brad-man is here to say. You understand that message?
OK, now ignore that part too. This is obviously misdirection by the Trump campaign. Social media services come and go. By their nature, they tend towards natural monopoly, so only one is really dominant in a given region of the world at any particular time. But Facebook sits atop a throne made of the bones of Myspace, Friendster, and a bunch of other dead services. In time, some new upstart will add Facebook's place and add its bones to their regal seat. There is nothing particularly magical about Facebook. They have risen and they will eventually fall.
Furthermore, there are signs that their inevitable decline will occur sooner rather than later. The fact that their founder got dragged before the US congress and forced to explain technology to a bunch of senile muppets is one such sign. Getting the Democrats to commit hard to a theater of war that is already losing relevance would be a very Trump move.
Alternatively, the interview reveals just how incompetent Hillary Clinton's Facebook team was:
It's entirely possible that the Trump campaign is baiting the Democrats into committing more resources to a theater of war where his side is so effortlessly superior that they would just be wasting their money. But honestly telling people what his strategy was is so obviously bait that it can't be wise to take the idea that Trump won mainly as a result of Facebook literally.
No, what's really interesting about this interview is that it shows how technology will change politics:
The Trump campaign used, and is using (Trump never stopped campaigning) the power of the eldritch outer god of Evolution. If you know anything about Evolution and all its manifold horrors, this should scare you. But it did not scare the interviewer, as they possess that singular trait that keeps mind-shattering cosmic horror at bay: fucking ignorance.
This interviewer thinks that Brad Parscale might have used black magic mind control, and this prospect is clearly disturbing to her because she is worried that evil men might connive to mind-rape people into voting for Trump. This is about the worst possible crime that this interviewer can imagine anyone committing. In fact, what Brad Parscale admitted to is far worse and the interviewer is too fucking inbred to notice.
If psychographics, theoretically speaking, weren't a pile of horseshit and it were possible to mind-rape Facebook users into doing the bidding of an evil overlord, then at least the depravity Facebook users would be subjected to would be limited by the imagination of the evil overlord. Evolution is, by definition, not teleological. There is no design behind it. It just oozes by trial and error into every nook and cranny of the possible. The possible is a much larger set of unspeakable cosmic horror than the merely imaginable. The human mind came up with the works of the Marquis de Sade. Evolution came up with parasitoid wasps.
Unchained, self-modifying optimization routines will do awful things that their human minders would never think of. Read this account of a coder who accidentally created a racist AI that affirmed local bigotry in a language the coder wasn't even fully literate in. That is the horror of adaptation. Evolution isn't malicious. It's much, much worse.
This is just the start. In the long term, the human race is doomed to being manipulated by smart ad-bots into doing nonsensical, debasing things. Not even cynicism will protect us, no more than the potent insecticide nicotine protects the tobacco plant against tobacco hornworms. Evolution is going to torture us all for no reason forever and there's nothing anyone can do to stop it. I don't blame Brad Parscale, just so we're clear, but I would like the record to state that Trump was one of the first to enlist the aid of the outer gods in order to secure a political victory. Self-refining ads will be much, much worse than psychographics, because eventually trial and error will evolve something like psychographics that actually works. Human attention is up for grabs, and inevitably it will be captured by self-refining artificial intelligence. AI will figure out how to make ads that are more attention-grabbing and more addictive than gambling and pornography. If you want a vision of the future, imagine a small orange robot hand grabbing a human pussy - forever.
Of course, everyone knew that robots would kill humanity, or worse, eventually. But a direct revelation on the exact methods they will use is a rare treat.
But I realize that not everyone is a connoisseur of robo-eschatology. So I have saved my explanation of the most exciting disclosure from this interview for last:
The part bolded above is why it doesn't matter if Facebook explodes tomorrow. Facebook, Google, the Kroger family of supermarkets; all of them work the same way. If a service is free, the user is the product. Services that have created mass databases of personal information have been around for years. A combination of social networking services and automation are making it possible for political campaigns to take advantage of these databases in ways that they could not previously. It is now possible for a political campaign to efficiently attack weaknesses in an opponent's coalition that were too obscure and diffuse to attack before. The traditional political coalitions will not survive this development.
The ability to make targeted campaigns to small, dispersed swing demographics puts long-tail candidates on a much more even playing field with more traditional candidates. It has already been pointed out several times here that Trump's campaign in 2016-present wasn't so different from Ross Perot's in 1992. But Trump had, among other advantages, the technologically-assisted ability to get his small hands into crevices that others could not take advantage of. He has enjoyed several other advantages, like the ability to just shrug off manufactured outrage, to electrify crowds with postmodern Charlie Sheen mantras, and twenty four years for Bill Clinton to lose his edge. However, this technologically-enabled micro-targeting should be more interesting than these other advantages because it's an advantage that someone who isn't Trump could use.
In short, it's a fulfillment of the prophecy laid out in this surprisingly good Newsweek article from ten years ago. I have no idea what happened to that author, by the way. They seem to have been able to write coherent articles, and yet they still worked for Newsweek. Presumably the management had them executed.
1. i.e. everyone else made a subpar effort at comprehending my brilliance