Could future brain implant technology make your thoughts someone else’s property?

Glenn opened Tuesday’s Glenn Beck Program with a simple question: Will the technological revolution we witness in the next decade free us or trap us? In keeping with that theme, Gary Marcus, a professor of psychology at New York University, joined the program to discuss the future of brain implants. Earlier this week, Marcus co-authored an article in the Wall Street Journal that discussed the future and ethics of brain implants, and he continued that conversation with Glenn.

Marcus explained that brain implants today could one day be what cell phones were several decades ago – available only to a selected few. But he believes that could soon change.

From the cochlear implants found in the ears of hear-impaired patients around the world to the retinal implant approved by the FDA just last year, neuroprosthetics are nothing new. Thousands of Parkinson’s patients around the world are treated through a thin electrode that is inserted into the brain through a small opening in the skull, and a wire that runs to a battery pack underneath the skin connects it. The implant sends electrical pulses deep into the brain, activating some of the pathways involved in motor control.

But not all brain implants work in this way, and that’s where future technological advances come into play. Some implants can work to read brain signals – to interpret, for example, the intentions of a paralyzed user. Neuroprosthetic systems may eventually be able to do both – read a user’s desires and then sending the reading directly back to the brain.

The real question isn’t so much whether something like this can be done but how and when. How many advances in material science, battery chemistry, molecular biology, tissue engineering and neuroscience will we need? Marcus explained that the science still has a ways to go, but it is imperative to have the ethical conversations regarding the potential knowledge gap that could begin to exist and who the thoughts and actions of such patients would actually belong to.

Glenn and Marcus dive into those questions and many more in the clip below:

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  • Anonymous

    Glenn do you realize that you are now opening your self up to a deluge of leftard clown posse trolls. You must have taken a double dose of big balls pills today.

  • landofaahs

    I believe Alex Jones said that about 1 1/2 years ago. You know, the crazy one.

  • landofaahs

    Gee Glenn, everything I post on your blog belongs to you in the end does it not? We agree when we sign on to your site do we not? Think of it this way. If I think bad thoughts and the government wants to come after me, I can always say they belong to someone else right. I’m not responsible then for anything I think or say. This has some potential upside.

  • jen

    Do you realize you are going along with those gop/dem “leftard clown posse trolls’??? Because you won’t arm yourself with knowledge and courage to stand against that information, but you prefer to remain silent which means you lose.

  • jen

    Wasn’t Jones to be the ‘fascist’?

  • Deckard426

    Joe Biden got Ted Kennedy’s brain, but had to return it after he drowned three Russian, mail-order brides.

  • Anonymous

    Bullshit! On the list of things that are important this has to be near the bottom. Power to Glenn and I’m not bad mouthing him here. It’s just that to maintain a certain amount of credible dialog you have to pick your battles. I don’t have unlimited resources or information. This is one hill I’m not [intentionally] going to die on. There’s at least a damn good chance I’m already better armed than you but Glenn is not my teacher. The reason I spend so much time here is that we share great deal of similar ideology. I wouldn’t have touched this one with the proverbial ten foot pole. If Beck can pull it off then “You Go Glenn!”

  • Anonymous

    You didn’t think that all by your lonesome…

  • Anonymous

    Now that’s funny and I don’t care what anyone says!

  • Jessica Robinson

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    ❤❤❤� ❤❤❤ ❤❤❤ ❤�❤❤ ❤❤❤I’m not responsible then for anything I think or say. This has some potential upside.

  • Republitards suck

    …. and we are now back to looney Beck. We missed you.

  • kohlrak .

    Nah, someone else makes the money, you take the blame.

  • Jonathon

    Ghost in the Shell

  • landofaahs

    Democrat voters won’t care because they have no brain.

  • landofaahs

    Demorons are worse.

  • landofaahs

    Did he drown them in scotch or vodka.

  • landofaahs

    You know Biden really did have brain surgery.

  • Anonymous

    Was it a lobotomy?

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72EnfFysPFE Connor

    I guess Dr. Michio Kaku is crazy as well.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KXin82A6maM

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72EnfFysPFE Connor

    I bet any money Obama wants this.

  • Mike Nelson

    A lobotomy cannot affect an empty space.

  • Mike Nelson

    I’ll see your GITS and raise you a dose of Appleseed.

    Don’t reckon many here to get the references though.

    Cheers, Major ;)

  • Anonymous

    Very funny!

  • Fat Lip

    Oh thee of little faith get in line .
    Trust them it is a great thing no honest it will only cost you ?
    Can not find a missing plane, but you that is a whole other story jump in both feet .

  • The truth about spammers

    Obama’s brain waves are barely noticeable. He’s safe!

  • The truth about spammers

    Just another brainless libtard. You’re safe as well.

  • Anonymous

    Almost a flat line.

  • Pablo Descartes

    Wow. Any more pics?

  • Pablo Descartes

    I used to think Alex Jones was nutty, because I’d heard he was nutty. Then one day I listened to what he was saying… Now Infowars is one of my regulars.
    Of course Glenn’s still a little nutty but in an endearing kind of way. Just ask Pat, Stu, and Jeffy. :-) Keep fighting the laudible fight Glenn!

  • Liberalism is Nonsense

    Arguably, centralized control of private property is the most effective way to chase collectivist illusions such as “social justice”.