Re: Transhuman fascists?

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Tue Mar 28 2000 - 19:43:37 MST

Zero Powers wrote:
> >From: KPJ <>
> >
> >It appears as if Zero Powers <> wrote:
> >|
> >|My guess is that Michael thinks I'm a fascist because I am in favor of gun
> >|control and ubiquitous transparancy.
> >
> >The "ubiquitous transparancy" will _not_ appear suddenly.
> >Instead, those who consider themselves the rulers of various areas of the
> >planet will make sure that _they_ get the surveillance to control the
> >others,
> >and prohibiting the others from using the surveillance against them.
> >
> >In short, you get a dictatorship in which those with the big guns get to
> >snoop on those with smaller (or no) guns.
> Well the transparency I advocate is mutual, two-way, transparency. Meaning
> that the individual would be no more subject to surveillance than the
> government. In fact my suggestion is "power equivolent surveillance," such
> that the more power you have to meddle in others lives, the *more* you are
> subject to surveillance. In this scheme, the President and members of
> congress would live in a virtual fish bowl and we the people would be able
> to know virtually *everything* about their political, business and personal
> affairs.
> In fact, I have to admit that I tend toward transparency fanaticism. If I
> were calling the shots there'd be no secrets, *none*. I realize the
> practical difficulties (if not impossibilities) in implementing this anytime
> soon. But I do foresee a time when ubiquitous transparency will not only be
> doable, but will be absolutely necessary.

I share your enthusiasm for accountability for our elected and appointed
leaders, however your proposal that they have more surveillance than the
average person runs counter to every security protocol of any leader
security detail that ever kept its subject alive for more than 5

> When we have gotten past national sovereignty and moved on to cooperative
> democratic global governance, there will be no need for such things as state
> secrets and national security. At that point we will only be concerned with
> (1) individual security and (2) global security. Both of those types of
> security would best be served by ubiquitous transparency.

Once, and if, national sovereignty ends or wanes, there will still be
other forms of corporate organizations (a government is actually nothing
but a corporation with a monopoly on setting the rules of the market and
use of overwhelming force) that will gain pre-eminence. Private
corporate structures, which owe no allegiance to national governments,
bills of human rights, or philosophical principles other than making
money and the golden rule (he who has the gold makes the rules). If you
are going to end government corporations, you must also end the
formation of other corporate structures as well...
> >Since you also advocate gun control (meaning those with the big guns get
> >to disarm those with smaller guns), you advocate that those who consider
> >themselves the rulers (a) get to snoop on everybody else, (b) one cannot
> >use weapons to overthrow them, and (c) you cannot find out what they do.
> >In short, you get a dictatorship which make the old ones, SSSR, Mainland
> >China, and Nazi Germany look like democratic societies in comparison.
> I know the NRA doesn't like to let this be known but: "gun control" is not
> synonymous with total disarmament.

Gun control like you advocate has always led to total confiscation,
sooner or later, in every country, state, and city in which it has been
allowed to become law.

> >Power corrupts, so why give the power brokers more of it?
> I don't advocate that at all. I propose giving more power to those are less
> powerful. I do propose opening the flood gates of surveillance, but its a
> two-way floodgate, and I'd call for more information about the government
> flowing to the people than the other way around.

Since the powerful will have greater computational resources, they will
be able to make better use of the intelligence value of this ubiquitous
surveillance, so even if everyone has the same 'access' (or even if the
powerful have 'less' access, they will still make better use of the data
and will be able to oppress people more as a result. Surveillance is
merely an intelligence gathering channel. Its value is directly related
to how much you can process in a given amount of time, and how much
useless data you can filter out. Unless you are going to mandate that
everyone have exactly the same amount of computing power, no more, no
less, then your scheme cannot work as you envision it, and it will
become a tool of repression for the powerful.

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