Re: Surveillance Technology

Michael Lorrey (
Tue, 01 Dec 1998 09:37:06 -0500 wrote:

> my inner geek [] wrote:
> >Having worked at SGI, I know that special effects experts can fake
> >almost anything, including surveillance audio and video.
> Indeed. What's the value of surveillance video when anyone can create their
> own on a computer at any time?
> den Otter [] wrote:
> >Yes, *of course* it makes perfect sense to index every citizen's
> >DNA and fingerprints
> What's the value of DNA and fingerprints when anyone can change their DNA
> and fingerprints at will (the former will certainly be possible in the kind
> of nanotech future we talk about, the latter is possible *TODAY*)? What's
> the value of face recognition when crooks can just get a face transplant
> (which a researcher recently claimed would be perfectly possible in five
> years)?
> As with gun laws, crypto laws and other pointless restrictions on personal
> freedom, the surveillance state will *only* affect normal citizens who break
> dozens of nonsense laws every day, and will have no effect on real criminals
> who can easily get access to the technologies required to change their
> authorized identity.
> Frankly, this whole thread seems to come from people whose concept of
> identity is seriously screwed. I am not my body, I am not my fingerprints,
> I am not my DNA, I am not my face, I am my mental programming. You can't
> track mental programming with video cameras and fingerprint scanners! In
> a few years a crook could kidnap me, transplant my face, hands and blood
> to their body, and your wonderful surveillance state would regard them as
> me, even though they'd have none of my mental programming.
> My mind is just totally boggled by this thread; it's so obviously absurd
> that I can barely imagine anyone on this list actually taking it seriously.
> Things have definitely gone downhill since I started reading it four or
> five years ago.

Oh don't be so harsh. You are exactly right about the surveillance state. Remember though about the list: we have a lot more newbies who still have a lot of statist, anti-individualist memetic programming in them, even those people who think that they don't, do. This is a forum for helping these people reprogram themselves.

Mike Lorrey