Mike Linksvayer wrote:
> On Tue, Sep 11, 2001 at 09:07:07AM -0700, Robert J. Bradbury wrote:
> > 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).
> I don't know that there's anything particularly innovative about
> these two ideas (and one involves guns, sort of), but anyway:
> * Arm and train all flight crew in antiterrorism measures. If the
> entire crew has handguns, you'll need a large number of terrorists
> to hijack a flight. The political hurdles facing this policy
> should be relatively low, as we're not talking about arming
> private individuals, rather airline employees, who would only be
> armed while on duty.
> * Make the cockpit, and perhaps the entire plane transparent to
> the outside world in realtime: audio and perhaps other feeds
> would be continuously be sent to the ground. Any abnormality
> detected would immediately alert human monitors, who could take
> appropriate action, from negotiation to shooting the plane down.
> In the worst case, where the terrorists still succeded in some
> fashion, we'd at least have a wealth of information about what
> happended and who did it, much more than we have now from a few
> chance cell calls. I'm not generally a fan of surveilance,
> but I think privacy issues are of less concern on a plane since
> you're already identified and subject to search, and if applied
> only to the cockpit, only the privacy of airline employees would
> be compromised, not that of private individuals/passengers.
> Note: although I fly somewhat regularly, I'm completely ignorant
> of airline operations, so I suspect the above ideas are unworkable
> for reasons I'm unaware of.
We used to have armed Air Marshals here in the US, but the airlines
lobbied to get them disbanded because they didn't like not having a
paying customer in one seat on the plane.
I think arming aircrews is a good idea, and we need to armor the
cockpits against armed intrusions.
> I've also barley followed the transparency and gun debates here,
> but the above made a "solution" to both pop into my head: Everyone
> has a choice between being armed and privacy. Anyone may be armed
> (broadly speaking -- include guns, weapons of mass destruction)
> but while armed, they must be completely transparent/monitorable
> in realtime. I don't advocate this policy and see many obvious
> problems, but it could make an interesting story.
Actually, Mike, this is a rather illogical insistence to make. Making
those armed transparent only alerts potential hijackers as to who needs
to get whacked first. Concealed weapons policies are far more effective
deterrents than open carry policies.
Transparency is a dumb idea, once again. El Al (the Israeli airline) has
had air marshals for decades, and they are typically the people you
would least expect: elderly men, teenage college students, pregnant
mothers, etc. Nobody on board has any idea who may be armed, and thus El
Al has not had a hijacking in decades.
This whole disaster has once again proven the entire stupidity of the
idea of the 'gun free zone'. We've recently talked about opponents of
cryonics and other extropian technologies as having the 'blood of
billions' on their hands. Similarly, anti-gun fascists also bear
responsibility for this disaster. Note that not one hijacker that we
know of was armed with guns. They all had pocket knives and box cutter
utility razors. One armed citizen on each plane could have prevented
this entire fiasco. Thank Ghu that the three on the Newark flight had
the intestinal fortitude to charge the hijackers and crash the plane
before it hit a populated target. I salute the courage of those men, and
those who may have been wrestling for control of the flight that hit the
Pentagon, which they suspect was actually aimed toward the White House.
I just wonder if the statisticians will be honest enough to classify the
tens of thousands of victims of this as victims of illegal use of
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