Re: Privacy and freedom

From: Robert J. Bradbury (
Date: Mon Oct 29 2001 - 17:56:30 MST

Daniel wrote:

> So why trust it with ever more power?

Because it would appear that increasing our own morality
(or freedom) in a world where others lack such morality
(or freedom) recently killed 5000 people.

History clearly shows how we have botched the job (forgetting
about Afghanistan as soon as the Soviets pulled out and focusing
instead on Iraq). So I'm pessimistic that *anything* we do now
will turn out well. However living in a democratic society
you have to realize the fate of politicians who argue that
we should take the hit on withdrawal from our oil addiction.
Its political suicide. The bottom line is that one can only
"manage" the disaster as best you can and hope technology will
dig us out of our hole before it all goes to hell.

> Does anyone seriously think it will not abuse these new powers?

No, a better question is, will such abuses extend the
longevity of the average law-abiding citizen?

We are holding ~1000 people now on various minor charges associated
with the WTC attacks. Most of those people, I would believe, are not
citizens (or perhaps recent citizens, perhaps here under false
pretenses). At least some of those individuals are taking the 5th
and refusing to talk. While I'm not an expert on any
possible side effects of drugs inducing individuals to
be more cooperative, it seems likely that they are less
damaging than the torture that arrested suspects endure in most
countries. I am not opposed to the use of will-diminishing
non-violent methods in cases where there is reasonable evidence
that such individuals intend to use their resources or knowledge
to conduct "acts" of war (i.e. where they may be willing to sacrifice
themselves to kill or harm a large number of non-involved parties).
Knowledge that such methods might be used would prompt terrorists
to provide their agents with suicide pills in the event the police
show up at their door. From my perspective allowing them to exit
stage left of their own free will could be the best solution for

This article, that was previously posted warrants reading
if readers have not done so:

Bottom line -- dead people don't care about their privacy *or*
their freedom.


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