Jay Richards, Ph.D., O.P., is an Assistant Research Professor in the School of Business and Economics at The Catholic University of America, Executive Editor of The Stream and a Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute where he works with the Center on Wealth, Poverty, and Morality. He is author of many books including the New York Times bestsellers Infiltrated (2013) and Indivisible (2012), as well as Money, Greed, and God (winner of a 2010 Templeton Enterprise Award), and The Hobbit Party: The Vision of Freedom that J.R.R. Tolkien Got and the West Forgot, which he co-authored with Jonathan Witt. His latest book, The Human Advantage: The Future of American Work in an Age of Smart Machines, argues we need a new model for how ordinary people can thrive in this age of mass economic disruption. Richards dispatches myths about capitalism, greed, and upward mobility and tells the stories of how real individuals have begun to rebuild a culture of virtue through creativity, resilience, and empathy.
In addition to writing many academic articles, books, and popular essays on a wide variety of subjects, he edited the award winning anthology, God & Evolution: Protestants, Catholics and Jews Explore Darwin’s Challenge to Faith. He is also co-author of The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos Is Designed for Discovery (2004) with astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez.
Richards is also executive producer of several documentaries, including The Call of the Entrepreneur, The Birth of Freedom, and Effective Stewardship (Acton Media and Zondervan, 2009). He has been featured in several television-broadcast documentaries, including The Call of the Entrepreneur, The Case for a Creator, The Wonder of Soil, and The Privileged Planet, based on his book, The Privileged Planet, with astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez.
Richards' articles and essays have been published in The Harvard Business Review, Wall Street Journal, Barron's, Washington Post, Forbes, National Review Online, Investor's Business Daily, Washington Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Huffington Post, The Federalist, The American Spectator, The Daily Caller, The Imaginative Conservative and many other publications. His topics range from culture, economics, and public policy to natural science, technology, and the environment. He has appeared on many national radio and TV programs, including Larry King Live; and he has lectured worldwide on a variety of subjects, including to Members of the US Congress.
Richards has a Ph.D., with honors, in philosophy and theology from Princeton Theological Seminary. He also has an M.Div. (Master of Divinity), a Th.M. (Master of Theology), and a B.A. with majors in Political Science and Religion. He lives with his family in the Washington DC Metro area.
When giant corporate actors like IBM and Microsoft promote “transparency and compliance with ethical principles?”, we run the risk that they are helping to craft regulations that hinder future competitors (“regulatory capture”). Rather than partner with them in making statements, the Church should stay clear.
Irish playwright John Waters warns of a time when we might have to grant moral discretion to computer algorithms, just as Christians now grant to the all-knowing but often inscrutable decrees of God. Not likely.
There are, of course, empirical implications of both the materialist and non-materialist understanding of the human mind. But the success of human cloning won’t weigh on the question one way or the other.
At first sight, the number of options might seem bewildering. The key question is: Will you ignore the coming job disruption, fear it, or treat it as an opportunity?
Too much of the debate over AI is dictated by prior metaphysical commitments that are rarely examined. This Evangelical Statement is a welcome contrast because it makes the theological issues explicit.
Although the coming shift will be abrupt, new technologies enable us to focus, as economists would put it, on our comparative advantage over machines.