Movie villain was inspiration for Joe Biden’s latest executive order, chief of staff claims

A “landmark” executive order signed by President Joe Biden this week was reportedly inspired by his reaction to a movie villain, according to his chief of staff.

White House Deputy Chief of Staff Bruce Reed made the perplexing claim to the Associated Press as Biden signed the sweeping artificial intelligence order on Monday, contending that the impetus for the move grew from fears over an AI villain in a film the president had seen, “Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One.”

“If he hadn’t already been concerned about what could go wrong with AI before that movie, he saw plenty more to worry about,” Reed said.

The villain in the film starring Tom Cruise is known as “the Entity” and is described by AP as “a sentient and rogue AI” that sinks a Russian submarine and kills the entire crew.

The president was reportedly alarmed by other AI-generated videos as well.

“He was as impressed and alarmed as anyone,” Reed said in the interview. “He saw fake AI images of himself, of his dog. He saw how it can make bad poetry. And he’s seen and heard the incredible and terrifying technology of voice cloning, which can take three seconds of your voice and turn it into an entire fake conversation.”

Biden’s new order establishes “standards for AI safety and security, protects Americans’ privacy, advances equity and civil rights, stands up for consumers and workers, promotes innovation and competition, advances American leadership around the world, and more,” according to a White House press release which also boasted that “Members of Congress, leading technology companies, and civil society leaders applauded the Biden-Haris Administrations Executive order.”

The order also sets that standards and testing are required of AI developers to ensure that systems are “safe, secure, and trustworthy.” The National Institute of Standards and Technology will reportedly be setting the safety standards which will be carried out by the Department of Homeland Security.

Developers are also required to “notify the federal government when training the model, and must share the results of all red-team safety tests.”

“Biden was profoundly curious about the technology in the months of meetings that led up to drafting the order. His science advisory council focused on AI at two meetings and his Cabinet discussed it at two meetings. The president also pressed tech executives and civil society advocates about the technology’s capabilities at multiple gatherings,” AP reported.

The order was touted as “the most sweeping actions ever taken to protect Americans from the potential risks of AI systems,” according to the White House.

“AI is all around us,” Biden said. “To realize the promise of AI and avoid the risk, we need to govern this technology.”

ReNika Moore, director of the ACLU’s racial justice program, attended the signing Monday and said the measure would ensure “we’re holding the tech industry and tech billionaires accountable” so that algorithmic tools “work for all of us and not just a few.”

Biden’s reported reaction to the “Mission Impossible” film generated plenty of scoffs on social media:


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