Re: Singularity: can't happen here

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Mon Sep 10 2001 - 01:23:50 MDT

Eugene Leitl wrote:
> On Sun, 9 Sep 2001, Eliezer S. Yudkowsky wrote:
> > The prospect of *development* of this software becoming illegal leads
> > me to think that the software will be developed in some non-signatory
> > nation, but there's also the territory of opaque distributed
> > development.
> I don't see a lot of momentum, maybe with the exception of Freenet. It's a
> veritable developer sink.
> Existing architectures are not yet hardened sufficiently to be able to
> operate in extremely hostile environments. And, of course, if you remain
> fringe you will be taken out with ultimate prejudice. Some truly viral
> approach is required.

As interesting and necessary as technical self-defense is, I
believe the main battle must be fought in the realm of politics,
ideas and cultural values. Some of us have never been part of
large scale political action and protests. Some of us are old
enough to have grown up in the Vietnam era and we learned a bit
about these things. We who are of the aging baby boomer
generation need to learn to protest and to demonstrate all over
again side by side with our younger counterparts. We need to
learn how to do it smarter than we did back then and smarter
than a lot of the protests of today. But we need just as much
dedication and passion and just as much of a counter culture
identity as in the sixties and seventies. And all of us,
regardless of our ages, need to make our voices heard, heard now
and heard LOUD. We need to become revolutionaries and to teach
the world what this revolution is about, what we all stand to
gain or lose, and how to fight for it. We need first to
recognize it and dedicate to it ourselves. Or are we going to
simply whine and dream up some gee-whiz garage "technological

It is easier to stop the State from going totalitarian in
disasterous ways while you still have enough rights to organize
and protest than it is to survive and manage to sneak by it once
it has done so. You may think you are smart enough to escape or
to to work around it. But how much pain, lost years and lost
lives might you avoid if you used that wonderful brain to
organize, oppose and protest now or at least support those who

So what will it take? Memetic engineering yes. But also more
active stuff that gives notice right now that we will not stand
for the nonsense comming in SSSCA. We must go viral and flood
the congress critters with mail and phone calls and infect
everyone we can with the importance of doing likewise. We need
marches and demonstrations in Washington and throughout the
country as soon as we can organize them. We needed them already
for DMCA and its early victims but it is better late than
never. We need lawyers and legal entanglements for bringing the
IP police state policies down. We need legal protests and test
cases, editorials, letter to editors. We need teach-ins. Can we
reach a broad enough coalition to force the politicians to take
notice? I don't know. But we must try in all ways that make
sense to try.

We must start asap. Preferably the protests should begin even
before this gross legislative miscarriage is even officially a
bill before Congress.

- samantha

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