In Computer Science, we often informally judge intelligence by using the Turing test. The Turing test is quite simple: if you can convince an observer that you are a human beings, then you are probably at least as smart as a human being.
Yet no organization could ever convince you that it is a real person. Corporations and governments make you sign forms. They are rude, impersonal. They typically react slowly. They only apologize after days of consultations with lawyers. No sane human being behaves this way.
Have you ever tried to have a social exchange with a government or a corporation? No matter how nice they try to be (“your call is important to us”) they fail to convince. In fact, I would rather deal with software constructs than organizations. They are often much closer to passing the Turing test.
Why is it then, that so many (both from the left and the right) want to grant more power to these organizations, to rely more fully on them?
Update: John Regeh contributed the following quote:
A crowd is not the sum of the individuals who compose it. Rather it is a species of animal, without language or real consciousness, born when they gather, dying when they depart. (Gene Wolfe)