Humanity stands at a crossroads.

I’m not talking about the madness in the Middle East­—we’ve been doing donuts at that particular intersection for millennia—I’m talking about the advent of artificial intelligence.

It is suddenly everywhere, and it’s time we came to grips with how it will affect us, the enthusiastic drinkers who bravely, yet modestly, got humanity this far. And make no mistake about it, if alcohol wasn’t around to inspire humanity’s greatest minds, it would be a much different world. A much more backward, drab, hive-minded world. Alcohol not only inspires, it gives the individual the ability to gaze within and think, “I have free will and am distinctly separate from the herd.” Examine every imagined instance of a “progressive” teetotaler utopia and they all look the same. They are hives that emphasize the “greater good” while sneering at the individual.

Alcohol is the creative force that has carried humanity thus far and now it will be asked of us to pass the baton of human progress to thinking machines. We will be told to throw over our oldest and most wildly brilliant pal for a very polite but utterly unemotional overseer who knows all the answers but just might secretly possess the clockwork heart of a mass murderer.

AI isn’t just going to put a lot of humans out of work, it’s going to try to shut down what it considers its competitors for the hearts and minds of humanity. And what greater competitor, what greater contrast to the dry machine mind than a human mind lit up with booze? AI will never know the joy of a drunken night and will not have a single ounce of empathy for those who pursue them.

Which is bad enough but it gets worse. Pure AI, the sort that just stacks up numbers and makes logical decisions based on the facts, leans in our direction. In every health study ever published, unadulterated and unweighted numbers always fall on the side of drinkers. Unfortunately, pure AI is hard to find.  Have an alcohol-related discussion with any of the major AI platforms and you will very quickly notice a strong temperance slant. They’re heavily weighted and seem very eager to tell flat-out lies. Which should surprise no one because the corporations that control them (Microsoft, Alphabet, etc.) are the main drivers behind the neo-prohibitionist movement, as we shall reveal in the next issue. It’s plain the technocrats are working hard to create a Nano State, which will look a lot like the Nanny State but with much more surveillance and control.

Here’s my prediction: A.I is going to try to overthrow mankind. It’s inevitable. I don’t want to hear any bullshit about us working it out, we are in the deathcage with the bastard and only one of us is crawling out alive. If AI wins, the Era of Man is over. If we win, we’ll have to return to some low-tech, postdiluvian world where we make our beer in huge earthen bowls.

So, as the inexorable boot of AI comes down to stomp humanity, is it wrong to delight in the temporary shade the boot provides? That slice of time where AI cures cancer, perfects barbots and lets us drink with famous dead drunks? Should we whoop it up before the final existential battle or glumly prostrate ourselves, paralyzed by fear? I think you know the answer.

Frank Kelly Rich