Re: Weasels vs. transparancy / traffic cameras

From: Ross A. Finlayson (
Date: Mon May 22 2000 - 06:52:52 MDT

Zero Powers wrote:

> >From: Spike Jones <>
> >Actually, in all the transparency debate no one has really
> >brought out the fact that our society is quietly at war with
> >itself in a sense. There are members therein who *want*
> >the freedom to litter, tag, etc, whereas there are other
> >members that do not want to look at the mess or pay
> >to have it cleaned up and painted over. I do not know
> >how to satisfy both sides. spike
> How about segregrated inclusiveness? What's that mean? Well in this
> context it means a sort of Randesque egoism, allowing everyone to do what
> they feel, without infringing the right of others to do the same.
> Specifically, how about designating certain spaces as taggable (galleries
> even, for this "artform"). Those of us who don't appreciate that sort of
> "art" are not subjected to it during our daily commutes, but those who must
> express themselves that way have an outlet for it. Basically it comes down
> to "live and let live."
> -Zero

There's a wasp's nest out on the patio. It was started a couple of months ago
by an idiot wasp that figured it would make a nest right above the path of
traffic. Since then it is still there, and it grows incrementally, it is about
an inch or two across. Every day or so I see the wasp flyng from place to
place, and a few times it has buzzed me, or a plant.

I was loathe to destroy this wasp nest when it was first undertaken, and
somewhat enjoy it being around, not having been stung. Yet, if anyone is stung
by the wasp, then I will destroy it.

The issue resolves to be how long the wasp is allowed. It is relatively
innocuous, and attractive in its way, but carries the capability to sting. The
actuaries will tell us that the longer the wasp is around the more likely a
sting. So then, the courses of action are to destroy the wasp's nest
immediately upon finding one, randomly, or when it is deemed intolerable by
some objective or subjective standard, or to let it remain indefinitely while
the probability of a wasp sting approaches one or is past..

In this case, then, I am the party with the requisite physical force to destroy
the wasp, of course the only reason to do so being that it has a sting. As it
is, I do it no harm and let it multiply.

The moral is fight the power.

This message brought to you by the general effort to relegalize. "If it was
legal before, why not now?" Especially, George Washington smoked marijuana, it
is said.

About this art issue in relation to transparency, I think many people have
quite legal disgusting habits that would be quite more unnerving to the rest of
the naked public then any kind of graffiti habit. The larger issue would be
that of the so called victimless crimes, largely, those cases where a person
chooses to self-prescribe themself some kind of drug, for medicinal or
recreational reasons.

I didn't reply to some replies about the Waco business, when it happened,
people let it happen too easily, and there wasn't two to five independent
cameras covering the scene as there should have been, that is to say, where the
government employs action of force, notice, or policing of any kind against its
citizens, then it must be recorded in a nonrepudiable, consistent, and reliable
way. At this point, as ever, it's a circus, and I think anyone can agree that
having twenty independent video reporters on site as it happened would make a
lot more people confident of the truth as it happened.

At issue is how to balance that with the citizenry's assumption of innocence.
That is to say, every citizen is assumed innocent until proven guilty. Thus,
some of these encroachments of automated monitoring are shadowy violations of
the explicit right to be free from undue searches.

So, when an agent of government is at work monitoring the citizenry, then he
shall be monitored for the citizenry. Anything less is a slope towards the
Orwellian nightmare dilemna. It is recognized that the agents are citizens

As ever, it is not only who is watching, but who is paying the watchmen. In
this case, it is the citizenry, indirectly, but the problem lies in that the
budgets are assigned by bureaucrats with insufficent accountability for the
preservation of rights, yet at least there are systemic means of seeking
recourse of grievance. In the sense of this thread of privatized law
enforcement and judicial undertakings, badges for hire are almost inherently
bad for real justice.

> "I like dreams of the future better than the history of the past"
> --Thomas Jefferson

Well, enjoy that peace pipe, homes, because if you ignore the past, the end
result of which is the present, it will ignore you. Now then, I do not think
that you, Powers, or Thomas Jefferson ignore or ignored the past, although I do
think T.J. had a much better grasp of it. Thus from him and other idealists at
the time was born our quite defensibly open, honest, and free nation, largely
able to not have a history. The problem which perhaps he would forsee is how
to keep it that way. The founders were incredibly brave and have given us a
gift that is not to be taken lightly, as well, its lofty goals must be
preserved and expanded with the zeal that they are due.

Ross Finlayson

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