Re: Surveillance Technology
Wed, 2 Dec 1998 10:12:36 -0800 (PST)

den Otter [] wrote:
>"Now, enter the surveillance system. All data is stored at separate
>places (multiple redundancy) and for cross-referencing. When trying
>to fake evidence, one would have to break into *all* the encrypted
>databases (in underground vaults) and change *all* the relevant data

And who watches the watchers? If I can watch the storage systems I can get the encryption keys, break in and change data at will. If I can't watch the storage systems then I can't trust the stored data. It's useless either way.

And where exactly are you going to store all that data anyway? You don't have enough atoms to store more than a few hours of global surveillance data at an accuracy high enough to be useful. You can't store the universe.

>even if these methods would become available, that doesn't mean that
>criminals would actually use them; they're usually not the brightest
>individuals around.

Uh, you can't use criminals who are caught to prove that criminals are stupid, when most of the criminals who are stupid get caught and most of the smart criminals don't. The law enforcement folks I've spoken to certainly seem to be aware of that.

And, of course, in your wonderful future the smart criminals would take over the surveillance system and hence would no longer be regarded as criminals, just like Clinton and Reno.

>Furthermore, you can't fool an integrated surveillance system by
>"simply" dropping fake DNA or changing your face. You can't
>possibly find and modify all the relevant surveillance details (in

Yes I can, because with universal global surveillance I can get any information I want. Is this universal surveillance or isn't it? You can't have things both ways.

>The thread is about eliminating arbitrary justice, about revealing the truth
>by means of technology.

What is "the truth"? Why is video more "true" than anything else?

>I too dislike
>oppressive bureaucracies, but it doesn't make me blind to the fact
>that for society as it is now (with imperfect people), massive improvement
>cannot be achieved by abolishing the concept of the state.

If people are imperfect, how can taking a group of imperfect people (and politicians are generally much more imperfect than most) and giving them a monopoly on power make things better?

>could *never* produce the level of (near) perfection that a transhuman-
>run state could.

And if pigs had wings... Look, you want to create a world where everyone acts just like you want them to. You don't believe in free will and you're desperate to prove that you're right by forcing everyone to act the way you want them to act; this is what I meant in my last message yesterday. As I see it, the battle of the future will be between proponents of single universal consciousness such as yourself and those of us who want a diverse distributed system. The former is, of course, impossible in any workable sense because of light-speed restrictions, but it's certainly possible to wipe out all other life on this planet before I get off it, and that's what scares me about these kind of police state schemes.

>The world has been going downhill since day one, obviously...

I remember the days when I posted about once a year because most of the other list members were so far above me in their understanding of these issues that I couldn't add anything useful to the discussion. Sadly, they're long gone...