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What is Technology, Really?

 6 min read / 

Steve Jobs thought his computers were like a bicycle for the mind, it allowed for people to become more productive.  The dictionary says that technology is the application of scientific knowledge.  In general, technology is defined as tools that make tasks easier for a person or company.  However, technology is not being created to solve poverty or heal a person with an unfamiliar disease.  Technology has a narrow scope.  Technology must pay back the investors and debtors who financed its development.  Technology is a result of investments and investments are made possible by the banking system.

Above all else, technology must be able to pay for itself.  It can pay for itself by saving money from future production costs.  Or technology can pay for itself by being replicated and sold many times over.  Therefore, technology is the application of scientific knowledge in the pursuit of making a return on investment.  It has much less to do with being a tool, product or service; but it has everything to do with being a worthwhile investment.

This realisation brings up some interesting correlations.  For example, technology would be advancing much slower if the credit market was much smaller.  A smaller credit market would mean that less money could be invested in the development of technology.  Therefore, technology advances faster as the credit market grows. And the credit market has grown similarly to the exponential growth of technology.  Is the banking system fueling the breakneck speed of technological advancement?



The Federal Reserve Has More to Do with the Creation of the iPhone Than Steve Jobs

That is a bold statement.  The explanation is simple, however; the need for technology is financial, not humane.  Yes, the iPhone is terrific and genetically modified corn starch can grow in a heat wave, but those products are a consequence of a business’s need to innovate and compete.  Businesses have competed for hundreds of years without innovating at breakneck speeds.  The rate of innovation has accelerated at a similar rate as the banking industry has expanded their access to capital to fund loans.  Innovation today is not about feeding the poor, it is about the bottom line, profits.  It is also about survival if a company does not compete then its rival will take market share and put them out of business.

Why is there a strong correlation between the rate of innovation and the banking industries expansion of the credit market?  In simple terms, innovation costs money and just like a loan that has to be paid back, an innovation that leads to profits will repay the initial loan or investment.  Just take a look at the billion-dollar startups in Silicon Valley, often referred to as unicorns.  An idea to put HR on the cloud is a billion-dollar business overnight, many of these companies fail but it only takes one in ten to make it work since the stock markets value these companies in the tens of billions of dollars.  Technology companies are getting massive valuations and initial investors often wind up becoming billionaires. Asset valuations and technology development go hand in hand, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has mirrored the growth of the national credit market.  It is not that technology makes assets worth more, its that credit pushes asset valuations up.  The higher the asset price the greater the investment in technology can be.  Table.jpeg

Technology Only Works with Financing

A business owner can buy equipment that could save him from paying four workers $100,000 per year in total.  If the owner is told that he can have a near zero per cent interest loan on the equipment for six years, then his return on investment would happen after only six years, a no-brainer.  This kind of calculation is made every day across all businesses and banks can fund all of these loans because they have access to near infinite capital.  Conversely, if the business owner had to pay a much higher interest rate on his $600,000 loan to pay for the technology, it would be a big mistake to make the investment.  At a 15% interest rate, it would take 60 years for the business to recover the initial investment, a very bad deal.  It is the ability for companies to access loans at low-interest rates that allows technology to compete with people.  If the stock markets were not at super high valuations and interest rates at historically low levels technology could not compete with human labour that has to make its employers money, minute by minute and hour by hour.

Quantitative Easing: the Death Knell for Workers

Many celebrate the use of quantitative easing as ‘saving America’ from the pits of doom but with a deeper look it only saved the banking industry, it left the American worker in the lurch.  Quantitative easing basically printed money to buy treasury bonds.  The value of the bond went up and the interest rate went down.  The Federal Reserve offered zero per cent interest rates on new loans, as low as they could go, and the rates stayed there for years.  As shown in the simple math above this works directly against the interest of the working man.  In Japan and Europe, they are using negative interest rates for loans, this basically pays companies to buy technology to replace workers.


Low-interest rates and the ability to lend an infinite amount of money is pushing technology forward because it allows for investing in otherwise unprofitable technology.  The exponential growth of credit markets has pushed asset prices up which increases investment in technology.  In many cases the technology that is financed by the banking system replaces people and people wind up losing their jobs.  Technology is really a product of the banking system.  Technology may or may not be making life better but it absolutely has to make a return on investment.  In recent years, technology has become addictive, intrusive and manipulative. Clearly, the driving force behind technology is money, not some human benefit.

The idea that quantitative easing and lower interest rates help the working person is a disturbing obfuscation of the facts.  The interests of the banking industry are diametrically opposed to the interests of the working man.  It is due time for people of America and the world to wake up and realise the massive conflict of interest the banking industry has on the rest of humanity.  Technology cannot compete with human labour without financing from the banks.  Why is the government letting the banks undermine workers, the economy and the future?  Because the government gave the banks the keys to the economy in the Federal Reserve Act of 1913.

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