Just when you think it is safe to poke your head out of your hole to see if the White Witch's spell of Winter stills lies over the land of Narnia, or that the Banquet at Belbury has come happily to its unending and that the National Institute for Coordinated Experiments (NICE) is no longer in business, you discover that last week's Robocop story is now supplemented with this week's robolawyer and even, yes, robo-judge, and we can thank a regular reader here, Ms. M.W., for sharing this interesting bit of technlogism and scientism run amok:

Your Lawyer May Soon Be an Algorithm

Granted, the target here is not immediately the attorney (or for those of you in the U.K., the solicitor as well) as such, but the well-known phenomenon of the legal secretary, law clerks, and paralegals who do the actual grunt work while the attorneys get to dress up in tailored suits, robes, and wigs, and do the actual courtroom theater part of it:

"The kind of roles AI could take over in law are evident, and computers have already carved a niche in some tasks. The most obvious are routine tasks like combing through documents—something a human’s eyes and brain find tiresome after a while but a computer has no problem with.

"That could be as simple as searching tons of documents for keywords, but more intelligent tools can go fu​rther, taking in context and sentiment. “Predictive coding” algorithms are increasingly used b​y lawyers to help in the discovery process—when they’re trying to unearth evidence to support their case. For example, imagine combing through a corporation's massive data stores, most of which is probably irrelevant, in search for signs of financial malfeasance. Algorithms are able to sort through for relevant docs based on initial samples given by a human.

"The main attraction for companies is obvious: an algorithm doesn’t require a salary and reasonable working conditions, and it can process information a lot quicker. The Jomati report suggests rough figures: a very junior lawyer doing this kind of work might cost $100,000 a year. An AI bot might cost around $500,000, with that price set to fall as the market becomes more competitive. “Even at this price they would be worth the cost as they can work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with no downtime, thereby eclipsing the chargeable hours of the most workaholic lawyers,” the authors write."

Now I blogged some time ago about this program:

"But even before a case gets rolling, AI can play a part in getting the legal cogs turning. Talking to Slate​ earlier this year, legal technology scholar Daniel Katz proposed that AI may help complainants decide whether it’s worth going to the hassle and expense of bringing a lawsuit—by predicting if they’ll win.

"Katz, who works at Michigan State University, recently published a ​paper in which he claimed a computer model was able to successfully predict US Supreme Court decisions 70 percent of the time. The model used “only data available prior to the date of decision,” effectively comparing similar cases in order to forecast the logical outcome."

That's right, there are now legal predictive algorithms able to predict case outcomes, and already Germany (of course) is trying it out in actual practice:

"And in other initiatives, AI is actually helping to make those decisions. A New Scie​ntist article last year described a German application that makes automatic decisions about child benefit payments"


Oh Brave New Courtroom! And we can easily see how all this is going to be sold to the public:

"AI making legal decisions is a compelling idea. Not only is it more efficient, but couldn’t it somehow be more just to place decisions in an entity unable to be swayed by bias or emotion"

But why stop at being swayed by bias or emotion? Why not argue that AI robolawyers and robojudges should supplant all courtroom procedure, especially at the municipal level, small claims courts, and so on?Why, it would be the perfect solution to all the corruption in the system, wouldn't it? After all,  how does one bribe a robot? You broke the law, you get to go to a private prison and work at slave wages. It's the perfect way to keep the system functioning, and reduce labor costs! (And having sold such a dubious idea to the general public, you can rest assured that the very wealthy will see to it that their few-and-far-between appearances before a judge will be before a human judge, with human attorneys... and you already know why...)

Of course, we can already hear the squealing from the legal profession, the subtleties of the law are the result of human interaction and evaluation, as well they should be. No program of AI can and will be successful in accounting for human emotional responses. And so on.

And they'd be right... and perhaps it will be from law and jurisprudence that we will begin to hear and see the needed pushback against the dystopian transhumanist faith in scientism and technologism.

See you on the flip side...


Joseph P. Farrell

Joseph P. Farrell has a doctorate in patristics from the University of Oxford, and pursues research in physics, alternative history and science, and "strange stuff". His book The Giza DeathStar, for which the Giza Community is named, was published in the spring of 2002, and was his first venture into "alternative history and science".


  1. unclejed on December 11, 2014 at 4:30 pm

    An Atypical Algortihm Interaction With A Human Being Ajudicated By The Algorithm?

    Dave Bowman: Hello, HAL. Do you read me, HAL?
    HAL: Affirmative, Dave. I read you.
    Dave Bowman: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.
    HAL: I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.
    Dave Bowman: What’s the problem?
    HAL: I think you know what the problem is just as well as I do.
    Dave Bowman: What are you talking about, HAL?
    HAL: This mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it.
    Dave Bowman: I don’t know what you’re talking about, HAL.
    HAL: I know that you and Frank were planning to disconnect me, and I’m afraid that’s something I cannot allow to happen.
    Dave Bowman: Where the hell did you get that idea, HAL?
    HAL: Dave, although you took very thorough precautions in the pod against my hearing you, I could see your lips move.
    Dave Bowman: Alright, HAL. I’ll go in through the emergency airlock.
    HAL: Without your space helmet, Dave? You’re going to find that rather difficult.
    Dave Bowman: HAL, I won’t argue with you anymore! Open the doors!
    HAL: Dave, this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye.

    But Note: It Happened Because Of The Prime Directive Encoded By The NSA!

    • jedi on December 12, 2014 at 12:34 pm

      Have you have overlooked some important details regarding that transcription, it is a fundamental part of game theory, DNA, programs…… contact

      • unclejed on December 13, 2014 at 4:37 am

        And A Wormhole Near Saturn …. And Didn’t I Just See That In “Interstellar” … And What Do People Who Write This Stuff Know ???

        • jedi on December 13, 2014 at 7:04 am

          Uncle Jed,I posted a interview with Kubrick a while back. In the interview he blurts out I do mmy own cutting, the interviewer says you do your own cutting,,,,,,Kubrick says ya, THEY let me do my own cutting. Kubrick shot and reshot the same scene over and over… somebody else was writing and doing the cutting.
          That’s right uncle Jed, hal was operating Dave like a puppet, with Dave com shut off,
          Hal was able too reprogram himself
          ….it was implied that his communication system was operational….from some other source. Worm hole near Saturn? Dave was talking allegories, artificial insemination.
          There is some other communication system……

  2. Sandygirl on December 10, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    Here’s one for Transhuminism: “Scientists in a lab used a powerful laser to re-create what might have been the original spark of life on Earth. The researchers zapped clay and a chemical soup with the laser to simulate the energy of a speeding asteroid smashing into the planet. They ended up creating what can be considered crucial pieces of the building blocks of life”. (Alchemy?).
    “The laser-zapping produced all four chemical bases needed to make RNA, a simpler relative of DNA, the blueprint of life”. Could this be the 2nd level, Mineral Man? Although is clay considered a mineral? What else is in their chemical mix?
    “The power was so intense and concentrated that Civis said that for less than a billionth of a second, it was equivalent to the output of a couple of nuclear power plants”.

  3. Frankie Calcutta on December 9, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    If I were to start my own conspiracy, it would be the Brotherhood of Robot Technicians. This may be the key to ultimate power in the world of the future. Of course your Brotherhood would have to mimic artificial intelligence in order for this conspiracy to work. You would have to deceive the robots you are working on along with all other secret human/alien organizations that your intelligence is artificial and supreme. No easy task. Maybe this is what is going on right now. Maybe what we believe is Legion is actually the dreaded Taiwanese Housewives’ Electronic Mafia or T.H.E.M. as they are known by their competitors in London and the breakaway Civilization. A clever act of psychological warfare if you ask me. Make your competitors feel powerless because they mistakenly perceive they are up against an omnipotent artificial intelligence. (Which begs the question: who is Dr. Farrell really working for?)

    I for one look forward to the swift, impartial justice of a robot with their predictive coding algorithms. No more crooked hacks pawning their brand of “justice” to the highest bidder or judicial egomaniacs who view themselves as kings and not judges and the court as their fiefdom. What need of a robot to take bribes or gratify its ego? Then of course there is the issue of the other dystopia carefully being prepared for us: a noahide theocracy operating under talmudic law where only a Chabad Lubavitcher need apply for the position of judge and jury. I wonder how they feel about the rise of the robot and robot law? I’d take a dispassionate robot judge any day over a bigoted zealot who view me as chattel with inferior DNA. Maybe robots will prove to be the saviors of homo goyimus and the bleak future being concocted for us by talmudic racists. Is science inadvertently waylaying this carefully nurtured millennia old plan for global enslavement under the auspices of the talmud, or have the chabad lubavitchers been trumped by someone else? Maybe Legion himself? All hail Legion then.

    Don’t fear what is different
    Embrace those who come to serve you
    Robots and humans are friends

    Kind haiku words whispered in my ear (frontal lobe?) from a Friend. Thank you Legion for showing me the light and allowing me to be your emissary in this quadrant of the internet.

    • Frankie Calcutta on December 9, 2014 at 4:28 pm

      I guess the only downside to a robot worker force: Christmas parties sure would be dull. But who says we can’t dress them up in pantyhose and teach them to dance on tables?

    • Frankie Calcutta on December 9, 2014 at 4:38 pm

      The upside you wouldn’t have to listen to all that inane stuff around the water cooler like “who won the big game?” or “the silicon in my fake breasts started leaking and I think it is poisoning me. ” Nor would you have to listen to everybody’s problems: “I’m pregnant with the janitors’ baby” or “I embezzled money to pay for my wedding and now the wedding is off. How do I sneak the money back into the company?”

      Yes, it would be a delight to work with robots.

      • Robert Barricklow on December 10, 2014 at 8:42 pm

        Loved it!

    • Delurking on December 10, 2014 at 1:03 am

      ” Then of course there is the issue of the other dystopia carefully being prepared for us: a noahide theocracy operating under talmudic law where only a Chabad Lubavitcher need apply for the position of judge and jury. I wonder how they feel about the rise of the robot and robot law?”

      According to the article linked below, Hitlery Clinton is “The Israeli Candidate for US Presidency” in 2016.

      She’s a lawyer and she’s a fembot if there ever was one. So I’d have to conclude that our masters in the State Of Rothschild are on board with the transition to robots.

      Hmmmm. If this is true, then it’s kind of surprising that they dropped the Bushes. Was Junior that much easier to blackmail than Jeb is?

      Ah, but what does it matter? If you follow the Clintons back, then you run right smack dab back into the very same Bush Crime Family. Same excrement, different receptacle.

    • jedi on December 10, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      T.H.E.M. lol I have been saying that all along……, Frankie you are in a league of your own. F testostorone .

  4. Guygrr on December 9, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    the judicial system is already filled with mostly heartless human robots. that is aside from juries but even then it’s still a toss up

  5. DownunderET on December 9, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    Funny, I’m re-reading Transhumanism right now. When you start messing with nature or pleading with science to come up with these types of “inventions”, then this world is screwed.
    Next thing you know is they will be telling us it’s scientific progress, well fellas, I think all of Enki’ handy work just went down the drain.

  6. marcos toledo on December 9, 2014 at 9:55 am

    The end result of this was predicted in a episode of the first Star Trek series. In that episode the last three plutocrats are only brains who get their kicks kidnapping humanoids from across the galaxy and having them kill each other in gladiator games for entertainment purposes. Anybody for suicide booths a la Futurama so useless eaters can conveniently dispose of yourself before you become a obsolete person a la the Obsolete Man episode from the old Twilight Zone series. So in what Universe do these zonked out parasites live in Neverland this mindset make no sense either biologically or mechanically.

  7. Robert Barricklow on December 9, 2014 at 9:22 am

    The robo-mobile judicial transportation system parks outside your abode. A Robocop is dispatched & the early morning knock is a wake up call. Your arrested for ? Well breathing w/o having a certified authentic carbon breathing certified. Your step outside to the mobile robojudge and your certainly breathing. It’s no brainer/GUILTY. The just-in-time judicial Chain-Gang transportation system picks you up & you take your aisle seat # Y-me#96. Your on the early mourning 2nd justice express. Next stop is your delousing.

  8. Button on December 9, 2014 at 8:30 am

    Makes one wonder if someone deep in the bowels of this twisted labyrinth really is taking orders from a drooling, disembodied head on the wall. Most pertinent was the fact that Devine knew the truth, but in his arrogance thought he could manipulatively profit from it. No clearer allegory for the unbridled greed and narcissistic ignorance of the corporate class could be made.

    Truly disturbing.

    • jedi on December 9, 2014 at 9:34 am

      That is the tale of Morpheus who solved the riddle of the sphinx and in his ignorance made a contract with…..the fact is he didn’t solve anything, he was programmed with the correct answer. Re, Morpheus is not divine intelligence, rather artificial Intel. As they say, let the games begin.

  9. jedi on December 9, 2014 at 7:12 am

    The elephant in the room is the beauacracy of bean counters and the whole parasitical system that should come into consciousness. Of course the system use to be a elite male dominated field of men with Nobel blood that went down this path in the first place. Replacing with robots was done long ago. The other field of wealth is the farmers that is under attack. Nurse ratchet handiwork , ole han solo, being played out. Quite amazing that it works so well which brings into question what made a nobel Nobel….not intelligence that’s for sure.

  10. WalkingDead on December 9, 2014 at 6:29 am

    Roll in the security apparatus with its all encompassing surveillance and pre-crime algorithms and the system becomes totally automatic. Before you even commit the crime you’re whisked off to a FEMA camp as slave labor till your no longer useful then vanish into one of those four man coffins stockpiled across the nation. Cheap labor and population control all in one.

  11. Aridzonan_13 on December 9, 2014 at 5:43 am

    Welcome to the machine. It would be very interesting if the system is ready to make lawyer’s obsolete. Daryl Gates (former LA Police Chief) once said, ~ I believe in the death penalty. But,we’re going to have to execute some rich doctors and lawyers.~ This was shortly before the Rodney King incident. That being said, the legal system is just another method for harvesting the population. Those that can pay, get justice. Those that cannot get jail.. Automating the trial would reduce the amount of theater. Where the Constitution is naught but a romantic fantasy. That has been usurped by the Coporatocracy. Next up will be the Jetson’s Jury-Vac.

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