Why subscribe?

The purpose of this Substack is to match policy thought with AI’s innovative speed. This tech and the questions that follow are changing in real time, and we hope this newsletter can help public policy keep pace. 

Right now, classically liberal ideas are largely missing at the AI regulatory table. By subscribing, you’ll receive weekly writing analyzing AI challenges and explorations of what a classically liberal framework for AI might look like.

This newsletter is not dogmatic nor single minded. Expect a range of opinions and voices from classical liberals, neoliberals, and libertarians exploring what policy should mean as this tech transforms society. Building good policy requires diversity and challenge. This newsletter is, however, practical and pragmatic. For classical liberalism to have a seat at the policy table, it will requires more than passive discourse. Our goal is applied policy; actionable ideas and solutions that recognize and mitigate AI related challenges.

Comment and Critique Welcomed!

 “AI policy” is an emerging field without well-established thought. The point of this newsletter is to put out ideas so that they critiqued, built on, and refined. Topics this complex can only benefit from crowdsourcing ideas.

Please feel free to comment on a post or send any comments or critiques to Matthew Mittelsteadt (mmittelsteadt@mercatus.gmu.edu) or the relevant author. As always, be respectful and constructive. We are trying to build good policy for a prosperous society - doing so requires civility and working together.

Why Digital Spirits?

In 1936, the preeminent economist John Maynard Keynes used the term “animal spirits” to describe a supposed base irrationality at the heart of economics. Many view AI with similar uncertainty, worried these black boxes might hide an irrational, and potentially harmful digital spirit. Keynesian remedies for animal spirits called for a hard-edged regulatory approach; many believe we need the same to tame these frightening digital spirits.

AI poses challenges to be sure, but these issues are not likely to be solved by the easy answers regulators demand. We prefer an ever skeptical, yet optimistic view. Entering the AI age will be rocky, but if we set a proper institutional table, and trust in human capabilities, we can ensure AI progress brings innumerable benefits to people and society.

Where to Start?

If you are new to AI and AI policy, no worries! We’ve put together a one-stop-shop primer that explains what AI is, how it works, and the challenges it creates. Click here to get started.

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Exploring a Classically Liberal framework to guide AI policy. Published in association with the AI and Progress Project at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. Views are the authors' own.


Matthew Mittelsteadt

Writing on everything AI and technology policy. Exploring classical liberalism in the AI age. Research Fellow and technologist for the AI and Progress Project @mercatus .