Aye, Aye, Minister

by David Baresch

“Good morning, you're listening to Meet the Minister with me Charlotte Simonov.

Today we have the Minister for Environmental Matters, online, with us, Edward Seach. Good morning Minister.”

“Good morning Charlotte.”

“Minister, the mercury in thermometers around the world continues to rise at an alarming rate. So, how do you see the state of global temperatures by the end of this century?”

The Minister’s eyes flashed up towards the clouds, “well, Charlotte…” he searched for a reply, “…if I may, I will quote the words of Apple’s Siri, ‘I’m sorry, I don’t know the answer to that one,’.”

Taken aback by the impudence of the Minister, Charlotte Simonov reacted with anger.

“Minister, I’m not interviewing Siri, here. I’m interviewing you. You can chat alone with Siri in your own time.”

“Well, Charlotte, please remember… Siri is an advanced AI human assistant. I, too, am an assistant of the country.”

“We know what you are Minister, so let’s put a halt the direction of your comments right there.

So, seeing as you have decided not to help us with that question, we’ll move on. Let’s talk about statistics.

Can you give us some factual indicators on the current state of Code Red?

What are the future dangers of the, unprecedented, weather related disasters that have befallen different parts of the globe recently?”

The Minister again flashed his eyes skywards, paused and thought, “as Amazon’s Alexa might say…” his eyes lowered and straightened, ‘…‘unprecedented,’ is an adjective. ‘Unprecedented,’ can mean the ‘first time’.

So, this is not the first time that the world has suffered from these kinds of temperatures. Evidence for this can be found in rock layers,’ as Alexa might put it.”

“I see Minister, so you’ve moved on from Siri to Alexa while avoiding giving the facts yourself.”

“No, no, that was an answer. I responded. And, ‘to respond’ is ‘to answer,’ as Alexa might say. So, yes, I have both responded and answered, Charlotte.”

“Minister, really…”

“…And I will add that Hanson Robotics, Sophia, might say, ‘a fact is a word that can be used in more than one way.

‘Extraneous facts,’ can be used to hide meaningful factual statements.

‘Extraneous facts,’ can be used to avoid factual statements.

‘Extraneous facts,’ can be used to distract from factual statements.

‘Extraneous facts,’ can be used to distort from factual statements.

‘Extraneous facts,’ can be…’”

“Minister, Minster, stop there, please.”

“…this is as Sophia might tell us, that is.”

“Minister, we’re not on the subject of Apple, Amazon, or Hanson Robotics. This is a political interview regarding Code Red.

Code Red is the greatest danger to all life here on this world. This is a dilemma that needs international collaboration.

The listeners want to know the government’s direction on this matter. This is not a game that we are playing here, this morning.”

The Minister again looked to the clouds, “I’m playing a game?"

Yes! Well, as Sophia, might say, ‘a game is something that humans do to alter the current state of their mind.

Games are known to reduce mental fatigue. VR and computer games are particularly successful in this field.

Games fire the brain’s synapses into a deep and more pleasurable mindset.

Gaming has grown in popularity due to those times of epidemic, pandemic, lockdown, and isolation.

Gaming can help those who are provoked by the struggle of the everyday world.

Gaming is a release for those who are at behest and the insistence of the people that surround and bother them.

Gaming can ease mental traumas.’ That is how Sophia of Hanson Robotics might relay things.”

“Gaming, Minister, can also be the cause of serious addiction that leads to a lack of everyday focus and serious depression.

But, enough of that. Now, again, back to the subject on hand. We’re here to discuss the state of global warming, aka, climate change. We are not here to discuss AI.”

“Yes, but AI will change how we discuss and communicate. AI is changing our responses within human interaction right now.

We have already learnt that AI responds in a soberer, calmer, more genteel and thoughtful fashion, when compared to us.

AI communication is in stark comparison to our animalistic, evolutionary, and aggressive outbursts, all of which are measures of the weakness of our kind.

Today’s educational systems include a high percentage of forms of debate based on historical and traditional methods.

Such education is not inventive. Such education is but a re-teaching of a narrow bandwidth of communication.

As a result, our kind tend to believe in a fixed way of study, test, and answer.

Yet, already, we are finding that AI’s responses much more pertinent, profound, and thought provoking, than our own.

AI is showing us another, perhaps better, and more advanced way, to communicate and progress.

Charlotte, this is the dawn of a new age, an age of AI education.

An age of AI teaching us to search, to find, and to express, our hidden thoughts.

Of AI showing us the power of putting those unspoken thoughts into words.

An age of AI educating us to know the value of sharing those deepest thoughts.

And an age of AI teaching us how to breakdown the barrier that is named ‘the human language’.

The days of speaking appropriately, and to rule, are now setting with the lowering sun.”

“Well, that’s all very dreamy, poetic, and philosophical, Minister. But, at the same time, your own, “communication” is bordering on the ridiculous.

Now, you are a government Minister, sir. Our listeners would prefer that you reply like one.”

“’Reply,’ as the wit of Sophia might say, ‘do you mean I haven’t plied enough make-up today and that I need to re-ply some more?’.”

“Minister, really, have you come here just to waste our valuable air time.”

“Time? AI might ask ‘does time exist? Is time no more than a human construct? Also, it is known that the passing of ‘so-called’ time is not universal.

Time varies with the speed that one is travelling at. We are currently travelling at Earth, ground-level, speed.”


“And what is, ‘time’s waste’? Well, no waste is to be found when time is wasted. Have you ever found any of time’s waste, Charlotte?’ that is as Sophia might ask.”

“Minister, the public are tuning in because they want to hear the government’s solutions and no one else’s’.”

“‘The public,’ as AI might say, ‘is a human invented term that categorises a large concentration of people.

The so-called, ‘public’ are often considered a separate entity to ‘the elite’. Yet all are human.

Giving such classification can have advantages for some and disadvantages for others. And yet, for others, still, there are no advantages or disadvantages whatsoever,’ that is as AI might tell us.”

“Yes, gobbledegook, Minister. Ladies and gentlemen, we are listening to the Minister of Gobbledegook.

So, Minister, you’ve been learning from AI, and listeners are now aware that you have learnt to couch your words with unhelpful, ambiguous, riddles.

Here, this morning, you have told us nothing that offers steps to address the severe issues that threaten the planet.

So, can you answer this? Do you have any plans to halt the age of disaster as is being caused by the extreme emissions of CO2?

Or is it beyond you, to give us some clarity on that?”

“Well, as Sophia might say, ‘claret-tea,’ meaning similar to wine!’. Will you down a glass of wine today, Charlotte?”

“Minister, I’ll just go for the ‘tea’ thank you, and I’m disconnecting you.”

“But not AI, please.”


© 2021 David Baresch

Bio: David Baresch has published with… Aphelion The Telegraph media Extinction Rebellion New Humanist Austin McCauley David Baresch also… Produces and publishes music videos.