And just like that, former Google CEO Eric Schmidt raises his head – in multiple roles – as the US embraces its new administration.
But it is not Schmidt’s way to do this very openly and directly – and so reports are now investigating the manner in which he may be involved, and benefit from the new configuration of power in Washington – other than as the chairman of the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence, an advisory board to the White House and Congress.
There, he is apparently already veering close to a conflict of interest situation, while pushing for more spy and defense agencies to adopt what is at this point the only truly viable – though small – subset of the often maligned Artificial Intelligence (AI) industry: machine learning (ML).
The problem is that Schmidt has at the same time invested millions of his own into “more than a half-dozen national-security startups that sell those very technologies back to the government,” reported the American Prospect.
But that’s not merely all when it comes to Schmidt, because the Biden’s transition team – according to prior announcements – had a number of members coming from Big Tech populating the new staff. Some of those come from Amazon and Uber, and there was one from Google.
But there were also a couple from a strangely named, apparently sci-fi referencing “Rebellion Defense” – said to be a recently set up, not to mention “a shadowy defense startup” backed up financially by none other than Schmidt, its board member.
The overarching concern here is that the Biden administration might find itself overrun by Big Tech if it isn’t careful, but the truth is that these two entities: political centers of power (whether actually in power at any given moment) with their corporate media, and Big Tech, already form a symbiosis where it’s hard to tell which member benefits more from the other.
“Thoroughly bipartisan” is how the report choses to describe him. The former Google head honcho’s only true allegiance seems to be in promoting the use of AI wherever possible, along, no doubt, his own interest.