Re: Privacy and freedom

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Mon Oct 29 2001 - 21:02:40 MST

On Monday, October 29, 2001 7:56 PM Robert J. Bradbury
>> 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.

Whoa! I seem to recall significantly more deaths from the government,
especially in shorter periods of time. The civilians in Dresden, Hiroshima,
and Nagasaki -- to mention wartime deaths -- for example. Your argument
would be much stronger if a) the governments hands were not so bloody from
its own killing sprees in both peace and war and b) the governments
activities had not relation to terrorism.

> History clearly shows how we have botched the job (forgetting
> about Afghanistan as soon as the Soviets pulled out and focusing
> instead on Iraq).

Some -- e.g., Ted Galen Carpenter who warned about Afghanistan in the early
1990s -- would say the US government -- not "we"; you're not part of the
Administration or the Pentagon; Bush doesn't have you on speaker phone when
he's with the NSC or his cabinet!:) -- "botched the job" by getting involved
at all. The Soviets weren't exactly have a grand old time before the US
government started giving money and weapons to the Pakistani government to
train and arm "freedom fighters."

> 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.

I want to strike at the heart of the problem: government. If you don't,
then don't expect the disease to go away when you just treat the symptoms.

> > 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?

I think Franklin had it right here -- about trading freedom for security,
that is.

> We are holding ~1000 people now on various minor charges associated
> with the WTC attacks.

Did this require sweeping new powers be given to the government? Were they
only arrested this afternoon? Or right after the bill was signed by Bush?:)
Do tell!


Daniel Ust

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