The neo-Luddite Fallacy

This was a bit too long for twitter, but I wanted to get a few quick thoughts out about this. Although inspired by the ending to Battlestar Galactica there are no real spoilers here, other than that the show ended with a half-baked neo-Luddite message. Not only is technology is moving too fast, but this supposedly strips us of some ill-defined essence that we would otherwise have.

The essential fallacy is that these arguments are noting that technology has not solved all of our problems, and erroneously concluding that the technology was the problem. If you take a starting point, apply technology, and find that it has improved good things by 25% while increased bad things by 10% it would be ridiculous to think that removing all of it is somehow a net gain. This is what the Luddites got wrong - instead of looking to a political solution to their real problems, they wanted to turn back the clock to a time of less comforts and increased famine. Progress is almost always slow and incremental, and we should always be looking at both the good and negative effects, and constantly reassessing the situation. This requires expanding our knowledge, not a retreat to a perceived idyllic past that never actually existed.