Re: The End of Privacy ?
Wed, 1 Jul 1998 07:49:36 -0700 (PDT)

Anders Sandberg [] wrote:
>True. But today a moderately educated crazie can buy enough ammonium
>nitrate to blow up a block or two.

And the fact that few do is strong evidence that the crazy threat is vastly overstated. Almost all such actions are reactions to oppressive governments, or the actions of organisations infiltrated by such governments.

>Tomorrow he might buy an assembler
>kit and release industrial strength disassemblers in the watru

And if you're relying on keeping assemblers out of their hands as a 'defence' you will die when they get one. If, like me, you're building real effective defences you'll live.

>Then you better make sure you have off-world tickets before black hole
>generators (or whatever) become widely available in the stores. The
>point is, you have to be able to move away *before* somebody starts
>being dangerous.

This is called 'forethought', or 'thinking things out in advance'. Of course I'll be off Earth long before then; because that's the only way to be reasonably safe in these conditions. Others will wait behind, relying on governments and others to protect them... and die when the shit hits the fan. My 'so what?' attitude is the only sensible attitude for a long-lived organism to take; I really think that many people around here should sit down and think through the implications of an indefinite lifespan, not just dream about it.

>I think you miss my point in this thread: there is a real problem is
>certain technologies of mass destruction become too available and
>there are no good ways of protecting from them or avoiding them.

But there are; I've given you the most effective defence against every single one of them: don't be there when it happens. I'm talking about living in reality, Brin and others are playing S&M fantasy games.

>Just saying they are no problem is hiding your head in
>the sand, hoping you have an escape before they become dangerous.

I agree; that's why I'm saying that we should accept that these things are going to happen and prepare for them, not hope that police state measures will prevent them (when in reality those measures are more likely to precipitate the problems by increasing the number of freedom fighters willing to take drastic action).

Here's a simple example: recently I've been ensuring that I can survive for at least a month if everything goes down because of the year-2000 bug. Most people are hiding their heads in the sand and hoping the problem will go away. If it doesn't they're in deep shit, if it does I have some useful gadgets and either way I won't have any food bills to pay in Jan 2000.

And I'm the one who's unrealistic? No, I'm planning on having at least a thousand-year lifespan, and I recognize that the only way to have such a lifespan is to ensure that *I* have it. No amount of political action will take the place of simply looking after myself.