Re: TERRORISM: looking for solutions

From: Adrian Tymes (
Date: Tue Sep 11 2001 - 22:01:26 MDT

"Robert J. Bradbury" wrote:
> As some of my posts to the list over the years have shown one of the
> big problems I think we will face in the future is "trustability".
> How do you trust that you will not be betrayed and/or damaged
> by other entities whose inner workings you cannot verify.
> So, in memory of today's sad events I would like to challenge the
> members of the Extropian community to think long and hard about
> what ways might be used to create innovative solutions to
> terrorism that would increase trustability and personal security
> without imposing restrictions on freedoms (in other words, please,
> please lets not make it a debate about guns).

One of the better solutions I've heard today is to train the stewards
in security. Give them batons and tasers, normally concealed under
their uniforms (don't want to *look* threatening), and make sure they
know how to use them. The number of ways a passenger-turned-terrorist
can try to take over a plane is limited; most of them can probably be
programmed into simulators for training against. Main objective is to
prevent hijacking, but this might also be useful day-to-day in cases of
severe air rage.

Once one airline does this, you wouldn't even have to legislate it.
Just run a few (probably tasteless) ads on this - say, "As a special
offer to those brave souls flying our competition, we offer to pay for
one life insurance quote per flight."

> But, people on the list have discussed before such things as ships
> with atomic bombs entering major harbors. And of course I'm highly
> aware of the damage that can be done by small bioweapons that are capable
> of spreading themselves. Today's events apparently were in essence
> predicted in a novel (perhaps by Tom Clancey?) a few years ago
> involving a plane being crashed into the capitol building.
> Why haven't we done anything about it? Can we come up with good
> technological solutions?

That orbital colony idea is looking better and better all the time...

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