Humans and their machines are doing a fantastic job of making humanity as a whole wealthier through independent initiatives. But what if we deployed, within certain parameters (e.g., concern for the environment), machines focused on a single task: increasing the material well-being of all human beings?
Arguably, the arms race between intelligent trading systems is working on a goal similar to this, although those bots are concerned only with enriching their makers — not everybody.
Or go back a step: what if we deployed machines working on creating recursively smarter machines focused on the task of making us all wealthier? Machines can only tell us what they think we should do. They can’t force us. But then, machines who can make us rich could make a pretty good case that they should be in charge.