Report: US would make Internet wiretaps easier

Sep 27, 2010
The Obama administration is drawing up legislation to make it easier for US intelligence services to eavesdrop on the Internet, including email exchanges and social networks, The New York Times said Monday.

Broad new regulations being drafted by the Obama administration would make it easier for law enforcement and national security officials to eavesdrop on Internet and e-mail communications like social networking Web sites and BlackBerries, The New York Times reported Monday.

The newspaper said the White House plans to submit a bill next year that would require all online services that enable communications to be technically equipped to comply with a wiretap order. That would include providers of encrypted , such as BlackBerry, networking sites like Facebook and direct communication services like Skype.

Federal law enforcement and national security officials say new the regulations are needed because terrorists and criminals are increasingly giving up their phones to communicate online.

"We're talking about lawfully authorized intercepts," said FBI lawyer Valerie E. Caproni. "We're not talking about expanding authority. We're talking about preserving our ability to execute our existing authority in order to protect the public safety and national security."

The White House plans to submit the proposed legislation to Congress next year.

The new regulations would raise new questions about protecting people's privacy while balancing national concerns.

James Dempsey, the vice president of the Center for Democracy and Technology, an Internet policy group, said the new regulations would have "huge implications."

"They basically want to turn back the clock and make Internet services function the way that the telephone system used to function," he told the Times.

The Times said the Obama proposal would likely include several requires:

-Any service that provides must be capable of unscrambling them.

-Any foreign communications providers that do business in the U.S. would have to have an office in the United States that's capable of providing intercepts.

-Software developers of peer-to-peer communications services would be required to redesign their products to allow interception.

The Times said that some privacy and technology advocates say the regulations would create weaknesses in the technology that hackers could more easily exploit.

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User comments : 55

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Quantum_Conundrum
1.1 / 5 (9) Sep 27, 2010
Glad to hear it. There needs to be more regulation of the internet in so many areas to stop scam artists, "murder for hire", terrorism, drug trafficking, prostitution and porn, and so much more that is facilitated especially by the "social networking" sites.
Arkaleus
3.7 / 5 (9) Sep 27, 2010
Yessss, Quantum, we need more. . . .

Can't be trusted with liberty. . .no. . .musssst have ssssecret sssspies to ssssafeguard our public affairssss. Only then will ssssystem be ssssafe.

(To be read with tongue flicking in and out)

We need more protection from "cyberwar" too, so more mysterious worm viruses can appear in odd places like Iran's nuclear plant. After all, isn't it rational to give incompetent and lying government MORE power over the flow of information?

Are we too stupid and weak to understand the nature of the slavery being imposed on us? Many of you will even come to love living under this form of government. At least, until the cheeseburgers run out and you're forced to live on a ration card because of the incompetent tyrants' monumental failures.

The enemy is within, and their power grab is happening NOW.
Sean_W
5 / 5 (3) Sep 27, 2010
The technical changes needed to comply with the warrants and such will, by design, make it easier to invade people's privacy. I suppose that identity theft hackers and all manner of bullies from ex-lovers to partisan thugs can be trusted not to abuse this new and weaker technical structure. Clinton's Clipper Chip rises again from the ashes of history.
Quantum_Conundrum
1.8 / 5 (5) Sep 27, 2010
Arkaleus:

Do not be so naive. The bottom half of Americans have always been slaves to the wealthy. Your jeans were probably sewn in Costa Rica for less than a penny per pair, and the "savings" was not passed on to you, but rather the corporations charged you MORE for what they paid less to make.

The things I mentioned enslave people all the time. Why do you hypocritically not find fault with those things as much as you do with the government who is trying to fight them?
Arkaleus
3.4 / 5 (5) Sep 27, 2010
Quantum,

Consumerism is not a comparable relationship to a police state governed by factions hiding from the public. I am not forced to buy and sell products, and I can compete with my own products.

The issue is about state power exceeding the legal limits defined by our Constitutional law, and our inability to halt the power grab by the "doomsday bunker factions" arranging our future for us.
John_balls
5 / 5 (5) Sep 27, 2010
Here comes big brother.
JimB135
5 / 5 (3) Sep 27, 2010
They want to preserve their ability to execute their existing authority.

Basically they want private business to pay for the ability to serve up any an all information on demand -- gift wrapped with a bow on it too.
bg1
3.7 / 5 (3) Sep 27, 2010
Who decides who to spy on and why? Given the increasing power of IT, they could spy on all of EVERYONE's communication in real time at virtually no incremental cost. Forget about privacy, all of your keystrokes, mouse clicks, site visits, downloads, etc. will be monitored and stored in real time without your knowledge. They might as well video all of us having sex.
EvgenijM
5 / 5 (2) Sep 27, 2010
And what would they do with my full-aes encrypted e-mails? Crack them for a thousands of years on a supercomputer?
freethinking
4 / 5 (4) Sep 27, 2010
Remember the hysteria of the leftists (and some righwing) when Bush wanted to wiretap phone calls that origniated or terminated outside of the US to known or suspected terrorists. This appears to be far worse, but where is the hysteria! Sorry I forgot, Bush infringing on the rights of out of country terrorists bad, Obama infringing on everyones rights in the US good.
Deadbolt
Sep 28, 2010
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Cynikal
5 / 5 (3) Sep 28, 2010
Who decides who to spy on and why? Given the increasing power of IT, they could spy on all of EVERYONE's communication in real time at virtually no incremental cost. Forget about privacy, all of your keystrokes, mouse clicks, site visits, downloads, etc. will be monitored and stored in real time without your knowledge. They might as well video all of us having sex.

Doesn't Google pretty much do this now?

I guess it's time to start shopping around for a VPN tunnel provider that resides outside the USA.
derricka
5 / 5 (2) Sep 28, 2010
Easier for law enforcement? Try impossible. The reality is this. If you can send data at all, you can thwart even the most powerful agencies in the world if they can't recognize what it is you're sending. Full AES encryption, or better yet, Full AES data disguised with One Time Pad, further disguised to look like some other data, i.e. "Seismic recording data". Sure, it seems a lot of work for you or me, but not for foreign spooks.
GSwift7
5 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2010
This is stupid, and it will never happen because it's just not possible in the format stated above. Think about it. As stated above, any web site with a forum or message board, like this site, would be required to have an offic in the US with the ability to wire tap? Every video game that has in-game voice or text chat will be required to have the ability to wire tap and have an office in the US? What are they going to do? Shut down every video game server and forum that's based outside the US? This is just stupid. Who gets to make up the list of companies that are going to be forced to comply with this. You can't just make the law say that everyone has to do it, and then only force some companies to comply. They technically can't do what they are saying in this article. It's just not really feasable. Somebody needs to stop halucinating on shrooms while writing press statements.
GSwift7
4 / 5 (3) Sep 28, 2010
It takes all of about 10 minutes to write a 128 bit encryption program using MS Visual Basic. By exchanging passwords ahead of time, you could communicate on the front page of the New York Times and government agencies would be hard pressed to decode your messages. Privacy is an illusion these days though. You know when a baby is born in the US and parents can have the hospital make a record of the baby's footprint? I'll bet nobody here knows who pays for that and who keeps those footprint records. How about your credit score. That's a nice little system for tracking people, isn't it? The way people require you to give out your social security number for ID purposes is a huge perversion of the original intended use of that number as well. None of us has any real privacy any more. The only reason our government is able to maintain our safety is because of those systems. If you don't like it, then you aren't alone, but sometimes the end justifies the means.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (4) Sep 28, 2010
Gents, the government can't get your taxes processed in a timely manner, what makes you think they'll be able to sort and sift through the massive amounts of data flowing through the internet? You'd require 50% of the people to be employed in snooping on the other 50% as the Soviet Union did, and we see how far that got them.

Whren you're a part of the Grid, you're uninteresting, unless you're doing something wrong. When you're off the grid, that's when people want to know what you're doing.
freethinking
2.3 / 5 (3) Sep 29, 2010
SH - This isn't about terrorists or bad guys communicating. If they want to communicate it is very easy to hide communication in the western world if you have half a brain.

What this is, is a way to catch and profile ordinary people. Violating an ordinary persons privacy is a way to control people. Case in point a progressive politician just released (by accident of course nod, nod, wink, wink) their oppositions SSN number.
Arkaleus
3 / 5 (4) Sep 30, 2010
Skeptic here you are again, attempting to minimalize the threat our "state" poses with absurd homilies about their ineptitude. Our federal factions may be inept and incompetent yet have enough power to prosecute two continual wars, kill humans beings at will without fear of reprisal, and still manages to keep down any sign of rebellion and secession here at home.

Not only do we have an amazingly potent state, it is showing no sign of slowing down or even recognizing that there is any political will besides its own. The powers have arranged themselves so competently that most citizens can't even describe the structure of power groups in the USA, or even trace the causality of events to the powers behind them. Obviously they have done so at the expense of proper government and the people suffer for it.

Spare us the disinfo comedy; right thinking people are opposed to attempts to create an information police state.
otto1932
1.7 / 5 (18) Sep 30, 2010
Are we too stupid and weak to understand the nature of the slavery being imposed on us? Many of you will even come to love living under this form of government.
The dangers of unrestrictable communications are obvious but its appearance is Inevitable. What to do? We cannot prevent its use by people who would exploit it for their own nefarious and demented ends.

The Answer is obvious and also unavoidable... The nature of humanity must be changed to accomodate the Future.

Life adapts to its surroundings but there is not time enough for humans to adapt, so they must be Adapted. This is referred to as 'Domestication'. Rather than just removing malcreants from the herd, it is now becoming not only possible but essential that the defects which create them be eliminated in the womb.

Compulsive ADHD-inflicted individuals with dysfunctional brains woulld resist this but the question remains: why? The answer is of course because they ARE defective.

Smile. You WILL be happy.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (18) Sep 30, 2010
What? Its not like this hasnt already been going on for the last few thousand years... People have been domesticating their animals far longer. Is it unreasonable to assume that Rulers were not engaged in the same Process with their flocks? Of course not.

Domestication ENABLES Progress. Without gradually changing the nature of humans, they could not be trusted with all the technology they have come to depend on. Todays western human is a much different beast than he was even a few centuries ago. He would rather watch tv than reproduce. He does not kill strangers. He eats and wears what he is told and smells much better (or much less). He takes medicines when he does not need them and is, by and large, more comfortable self-absorbed than in interaction with others.

These changes are all by Design and against human animal nature. They enable us to live closer together and consume more than ever before, to the betterment of civilization as a whole at this point in its development.
Arkaleus
1.8 / 5 (5) Sep 30, 2010
Otto,

Please go spew your collectivist garbage somewhere else. This thread is a poor place to publish your manic delusions of totalitarian utopia.

No matter how strong your will, you will never be able to govern because you are IGNORANT of the totality and spend too much energy multiplying your narcissistic EGO.

Accept your mortality, Otto.
Skeptic_Heretic
3.4 / 5 (5) Sep 30, 2010
So you two conspiracy theorists like to insist that the government is wholly incompetant. Yet you're also insisting that they're capable enough to use massive amounts of public data against you.

Which is it?

Are they bumbling fools, or geopolitical masterminds?
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (15) Sep 30, 2010
Our federal factions may be inept and incompetent
Whenever, wherever garbage-spewing authority-haters like the denizon arkalayme surface, otto will be there.
like to insist that the government is wholly incompetant.
Au contraire, otto thinks Real Governments are super-competent. Incompetence is Inevitable and thus a dependable Tool, like the denizon arkalayme. No matter how strong his will, he will never be able to govern because he is IGNORANT of the totality and spends too much energy multiplying his narcissistic EGO, by pretending his hot air HERE has any effect against the authority he so hates and fears. And is impotent against.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (16) Sep 30, 2010
Consumerism is not a comparable relationship to a police state governed by factions hiding from the public. I am not forced to buy and sell products
You buy and sell from the limited selection you are offered. You prefer the things which suit the artificial persona created for you to identify with. Like country music? Drive a pickup?
and I can compete with my own products
Not without financial backing and by implication, approval. And not without appealing to artificial target personas in sufficient number.

Consumerism drives Progress in technologies which are only required at certain times and in certain places, and thus cannot be allowed to operate unfettered.

You will consume what you are required to consume, and your products will only be successful if they assist in technological development in the Proper Direction.
Arkaleus
1 / 5 (2) Sep 30, 2010
I'm sorry, it's too funny - reading posts from a megalomaniac in an internet forum for super-geeks is sad comedy. And I'm just a plain geek!

BTW Otto, I can and do operate a manufacturing business that I built without a dime of "financial backing" or permission from anyone.

Maybe you can go scare up some fans in North Korea with your Great Father-Leader shtick. I hear they're looking for a replacement these days.

Which super-being you imagine yourself as: Dark Lord Lucifer? Supercone monoculus? Will you destroy us all with your super eye? Is it only a matter of time?

And Skeptic: No one really goes for the hysterical "conspiracy theory" label anymore. We're all jaded and wise now - Only old people fall for that kind of petty mind - manipulation.

There's too many IT and CS professionals here to fool us with your disinfo crapola - we know what they can do, and you aren't fooling anyone with your co-intel pro retro-hype. They are both powerful and incompetent. Scary.
otto1932
1.1 / 5 (15) Sep 30, 2010
I'm sorry, it's too funny - reading posts from a megalomaniac in an internet forum for super-geeks is sad comedy. And I'm just a plain geek!
Oh I'm not deluded in thinking I can change anything just by squawking about it, nor that I might know what would work better, even if I could (except religion). Like you sir. Anyways I'm pretty happy with the way things are playing out, knowing they are in Good Hands.
Which super-being you imagine yourself as: Dark Lord Lucifer? Supercone monoculus? Will you destroy us all with your super eye? Is it only a matter of time?
-Nah I'm just a hapless unwitting participant like yourself.
BTW Otto, I can and do operate a manufacturing business that I built without a dime of "financial backing" or permission from anyone.
So tell us more. You make something that 'everyone' needs to have, or a part thereof? And you never floated a loan to expand or used inherited money or somesuch? Come on, give otto something he can use here.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Sep 30, 2010
The issue is about state power exceeding the legal limits defined by our Constitutional law, and our inability to halt the power grab by the "doomsday bunker factions" arranging our future for us.
-We can at least ascertain that the Squawker enjoys using trendy buzzwords created for his particular persona. Note the quasi-religious tone to the term 'Constitution' -but is this only a reaction typical of ottos own readymade persona? So hard to tell- They're so good at it. Too many commercials. Too much product loyalty. Where's god when you need him? (dead, superseded, obsoleted)
freethinking
2.2 / 5 (5) Sep 30, 2010
These wiretaps are to catch, intimidate, and control law abiding people from doing legitimate things. For example people that wants to protest something politically correct, email addresses given out to the group they oppose, SSN numbers given out of your political adversary, communication between lawyer and client, all done by accident nudge nudge wink wink.
Without privacy of communication, you cannot have freedom.
Also Otto, I own two businesses and never have received a dime of government money. How much government money have you received in unemployment, student loans you never paid back, welfare
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (4) Sep 30, 2010
And Skeptic: No one really goes for the hysterical "conspiracy theory" label anymore. We're all jaded and wise now - Only old people fall for that kind of petty mind - manipulation.
Then you should have some evidence to back up your claim.
There's too many IT and CS professionals here to fool us with your disinfo crapola - we know what they can do, and you aren't fooling anyone with your co-intel pro retro-hype. They are both powerful and incompetent. Scary.
Again, it's just a piss in the wind until you have something that substantiates your ridiculousness.Seriosuly Ark, you're no better than a YEC at this point in time.
Arkaleus
3 / 5 (4) Oct 01, 2010
Face it Skeptic, I don't think my suspicions represent any kind of minority view. No one trusts the intelligence complex and based on what they've done in the past (That we know of) we should rightly judge them a hostile and destabilizing faction to our liberties and laws. A free society's government should have no secrets, and none of it should operate outside of the law. Unless of course we are not a free society, and the law is meant to oppress rather than preserve.

Only a fool denies himself the ability to judge things independently, and only a coward is afraid to declare his suspicion that a collection of assassins and liars operating outside of our laws are more a threat than a friend.

Are you trying to convince us to ignore the threat of these malevolent factions and return to the ignorant slumber of the pre-internet era? If so, I have reason to suspect your motives as well. How do we know that YOU are a friend to us, based on what you encourage in your speech?
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (4) Oct 01, 2010
Still waiting on your evidence Ark. The more posts lacking evidence you generate, the more you look like a conspiracy theorist.

I may not know how geopolitical power works in its entirety, but I do know people, and I know how people look for patterns that aren't there when they are mad, or upset with something.

So tell us what the plan is. Tell us how it works and who's involved. Give us some evidence. Otherwise you're simply failing to recognize your own inability to seperate fact from fiction, due to the inherent primate ability to pattern match. Rubicon is just a television show.
otto1932
1 / 5 (16) Oct 02, 2010
How much government money have you received in unemployment, student loans you never paid back, welfare
Aw jeez it must have been tens of dollars
Also Otto, I own two businesses and never have received a dime of government money.
-Including the clever tax schemes you and your accountant allegedly cooked up? Hey, you defamed me first-
Are you trying to convince us to ignore the threat of these malevolent factions and return to the ignorant slumber of the pre-internet era?
buzz buzz buzz. Otto wonders if arkalitmus ever actually thinks for himself-
-That might well be true. But how do YOU know that They're not the Good Guys? How do YOU know that what They're doing is absolutely necessary, in order to prevent far worse things from happening? Oh, ignore that little red dot on your chest-
A free society's government
There is not, and will never be, such a thing. You are a religionist.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (17) Oct 02, 2010
Let me fix that:
a coward is afraid to declare his suspicion that a collection of assassins and liars operating outside of our laws are more a threat than a friend.
-That might well be true. But how do YOU know that They're not the Good Guys? How do YOU know that what They're doing is absolutely necessary, in order to prevent far worse things from happening?

Who's the megalomaniac? Are you naive enough to believe that things being done which YOU have not approved of, might nevertheless be the Right things to do, legal or not? You decry the system which gives you these laws and then decry the people who need to break them.

Sounds like you only want to decide which laws arent worth obeying. You feel a little superfluous, yes? Maybe you cry a little too much.
filmmakerkirk
3.4 / 5 (5) Oct 02, 2010
Absolute bullshit is what it is... United States of Corporate America.
Caliban
4 / 5 (4) Oct 02, 2010
Not to add further fuel to the fire, but there is this little bit of information about recent Midwest hijinx:

http://www.rawsto...tivists/

There is no information regarding how the FBI obtained any damning evidence of wrongdoing, but one supposes that at least some part was netted through listening in upon voice/internet communications.

The fact of the matter is that this is carte blanche for any number of organizations to gather information for pretty much any purpose, to be used at any time, against any person.

Perhaps you are, for instance, a person who likes to make use of the personals to find sex partners that indulge in less straight-laced forms of sexual expression. Then suppose that, even though you are a law-abiding, intelligent citizen, you decide to run for public office or some such. Then suppose your campaign is quashed when you are threatened by some shadowy figure with blackmail if you do not bow out of the race?
Contd
Caliban
4 / 5 (4) Oct 02, 2010
contd

This is what concerns me regarding this type of surveillance- it can and will be used to limit the right of free speech, and the right of citizens to run for office, protest government, speak against oppression or wrongdoing, or even be denied a job or insurance, or any number of things that aren't even related to free speech rights.

Textbook example of the concept of the "Slippery Slope".

Skeptic_Heretic
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 03, 2010
This is what concerns me regarding this type of surveillance- it can and will be used to limit the right of free speech, and the right of citizens to run for office, protest government, speak against oppression or wrongdoing, or even be denied a job or insurance, or any number of things that aren't even related to free speech rights.
This is only a problem, if we allows people to use subjective morality to weigh the value and veracity of the information.

Rumors say Richard Feynman was fond of orgies and other sorts of weird sex parties, he was still one of the most brilliant men ever to work in the field of science, or put pen to paper.

I'm not really concerned.
PanchoPantera
not rated yet Oct 03, 2010
Politics is conspiracy.
Sauvignon
5 / 5 (1) Oct 03, 2010
They're just like Hitler and the Nazis, aren't they? :>
ziprar
5 / 5 (1) Oct 03, 2010
-Software developers of peer-to-peer communications services would be required to redesign their products to allow interception.

oh yeah, I see that happening
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (15) Oct 03, 2010
Then suppose your campaign is quashed when you are threatened by some shadowy figure with blackmail if you do not bow out of the race?
Well, from a different perspective, this kind of scrutiny could be used to protect candidates and their free speech from just such shadowy figures (mafia, north koreans, yakuza, inlaws) who could not be discovered any other way. But then, I'm in favor of speeding cameras, so I have a pretty high tolerance for surveillance.

Hard to forsee what the ordinary citizen, alone or in bulk, will need to be protected from as technology blooms. We just saw one private firm flash crash the stock market; how hard for a govt to do this or similar? When will the next Stuxnet destroy our energy grid, or will it be done with an EMP launched from an offshore liberian container ship?

Or more insidiously, will these things be Arranged so that a terrified citizenry will demand draconian countermeasures, like the engineered hyperinflation in post-ww1 germany?
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (16) Oct 03, 2010
After all, Rooosevelt was soothingly isolationist until that 'day of infamy' slapped us in the face.

'No matter what the public sentiment, it can be quickly and thoroughly changed by Events of sufficient magnitude.' How hard can it really be to fly planes into buildings or crash the dollar when you Own the future?
GSwift7
5 / 5 (2) Oct 03, 2010
"They're just like Hitler and the Nazis, aren't they? :>"

Ding, Ding, Ding!! We have a winner! Someone finally called someone a Nazi or made a Hitler reference, following that rule that any online conversation will eventually reach that point if allowed to continue long enough. lol.

You know guys, Otto may be saying things you don't like to hear, and 1000 characters of text makes it hard to say anything well, but history is full of examples of what he's talking about (If I'm understanding him correctly). Look at the repression of Gallileo's work by the Catholic church, for example. There are many examples as such. Governments are engines of control for the benefit of a society, as it sees it's own benefit to be served. Societies are often wrong about what's best for them, and leaders are often fallable. There are certainly schemes today, as there always have been. It's not like there is only one scheme though. There are many different groups with many different agendas. Strange.
GSwift7
2 / 5 (1) Oct 03, 2010
This world we live in today is unique compared to all previous human society though. With the rapid comunication we have today, both from official sources, and word of mouth between people, it's hard to predict how this will change us as a whole. It's hard to imagine an isolationist policy like that of FDR working in our modern day world. Even a country like North Korea has trouble keeping its people in the dark ages today. I personally feel reasured about my place in the world when I see that even the governments of China and Cuba have trouble making people believe lies and/or hiding the truth. Rewriting history isn't as easy as it has been in the past. It still happens, but I think technology is helping society make sure government is more exposed when they try funny stuff. Something Whitewater would never have become publicly known 100 years ago, for example.
_nigmatic10
not rated yet Oct 03, 2010
Another case of bad apples spoiling it for the rest. Eventually, we'll all be "protected" in our little Orwellian bubbles.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 03, 2010
@gswift7
Well thankyou sir. I just think that if Reason were really in control, it would find itself having to do things- desperate, violent things- that the vast majority of us would oppose if they knew. Such is the unfortunate Reality of this transition phase of the human animal, into something that can live with itself.

And I think Reason would go to any lengths to accomplish it's Mission, to use secrecy and deception and coercion and as much Force as can exist in the world, to do it. In light of this, any disclosures of Intent such as that in the article above, would necessarily be an expediency; that is, sociopolitical in nature, designed to form and direct public opinion rather than to elicit it.
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (1) Oct 04, 2010
And I think Reason would go to any lengths to accomplish it's Mission, to use secrecy and deception and coercion and as much Force as can exist in the world, to do it.
Yes but you're assuming that reason isn't coupled with empathy. Unless technological machines are running the show I think you're wrong, at least in this stage of the game.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 04, 2010
And I think Reason would go to any lengths to accomplish it's Mission, to use secrecy and deception and coercion and as much Force as can exist in the world, to do it.
Yes but you're assuming that reason isn't coupled with empathy. Unless technological machines are running the show I think you're wrong, at least in this stage of the game.
Initial empathy can lead to greater suffering in the long term, as well as endangering the entire Construct. Tough Love for the entire human race. If Collapse is inevitable without action, then the most altruistic thing one can do is act.
In such cases there needs to be an Actor, and given that Collapse has been the tendency for ages and yet the opposite has prevailed, I think Actors do exist. Much evidence for continued, repeated, consistent, and extraordinary Action.
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (2) Oct 04, 2010
Initial empathy can lead to greater suffering in the long term, as well as endangering the entire Construct. Tough Love for the entire human race. If Collapse is inevitable without action, then the most altruistic thing one can do is act.
Problem is, as individuals we are almost useless in situations of imminent threat. We truly excel in groups, not alone. To be reductionist, objectivist, and operate in a manner that allows the wanton destruction of components of our species will only lead to destroying what makes our species function.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 04, 2010
Problem is, as individuals we are almost useless in situations of imminent threat
Sure. But humans excel at anticipating and planning too, in order to avoid last-minute chaos. We see this at all levels of society, and throughout the animal world, and then assume there's anarchy at the very top? I would rather assume the opposite and look for evidence of it.

People truly have trouble with the concept of Inevitability. We are strongly taught to disregard it. The main point of our religions is that NOTHING is inevitable. But some things are unavoidable, and we can choose to act to mitigate their effects.
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (1) Oct 04, 2010
Sure. But humans excel at anticipating and planning too, in order to avoid last-minute chaos.
As individuals, for survival. Planning is often rather poor in group think, which is why we retain the more selfish motivations.
We see this at all levels of society, and throughout the animal world, and then assume there's anarchy at the very top?
Not anarchy, but far from unified solidarity.
I would rather assume the opposite and look for evidence of it.
I'd rather assume nothing and use empirical observation.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 04, 2010
As individuals, for survival. Planning is often rather poor in group think, which is why we retain the more selfish motivations.
Absolutely. That's why the most critical Planning would have to be left up to Individuals who can work and act outside the realm of public scrutiny. As Plato told us in his Republic.
Not anarchy, but far from unified solidarity
-At the level we can see. The idea of Internet surveillance... Digital communication for instance offers many immense benefits, but instituting it required enormous capital and the forced obsolescence of many industries. I submit that it would never have happened by itself. And there is no one entity, no country or corporation or amalgamation we can identify as the creator of it.
Cont-
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 04, 2010
The advent of digital communication includeed the initial marketing of personal computing, an expense nobody really needed. CADD for instance- the only real benefit for so long, was that everybody else was using it. Constant Pressure from corporations caused more traditional and cost-effective alternatives to evaporate.

We mull over our personal concerns about surveillance and perhaps miss that the Internet in it's entirety is a marvelous mechanism for Monitoring and Maintaining and Directing this civilization in exquisite new detail.

Whole 'cultures' had to be destroyed to make digicom possible, just as the german craftsman guilds were eliminated in the 1800s. Just as the southern slave culture was ended in the US. By the application of Force in some degree.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 04, 2010
The advent of digital communication includeed the initial marketing of personal computing, an expense nobody really needed. CADD for instance- the only real benefit for so long, was that everybody else was using it. Constant Pressure from corporations caused more traditional and cost-effective alternatives to evaporate.

We mull over our personal concerns about surveillance and perhaps miss that the Internet in it's entirety is a marvelous mechanism for Monitoring and Maintaining and Directing this civilization in exquisite new detail.

The same can be said of all major industries- transportation, energy, food, law, education, medicine- which had to displace tradition by force. We may appreciate now how they are better, but we could not have anticipated their benefit. But I think it was anticipated and these Constructs forced into existence because of it.
Cont.
otto1932
1 / 5 (14) Oct 04, 2010
I'd rather assume nothing and use empirical observation.
Scientists discover anomalies which lead them to create a working premise- a theory. This gives them a direction, channels their exploration. Forensics is science but it has to assume that evidence has been purposefully obscured by clever and desperate People.

We learned just recently that the Titanic was steered into an iceberg. This event more than any other would lead people to eventually turn away from the perceived safety of ships and embrace the lunacy of travelling in planes.

By itself it can be discounted but when added to that great pile of mysterious mega-disasters which might be considered beneficial in the long run, our theory looks pretty good.
Caliban
5 / 5 (1) Oct 04, 2010
Addendum:

http://www.altern...e=entire

(Note the prevalence of Corporate interest)

Once information is obtained, it will be analyzed, and once analyzed, interpreted. And once interpreted, preemptively acted upon, against any and all that are perceived as a "threat" to Corporate/Government interest.

This has exactly ZERO to do with Public Safety. Protesting against war, attacks on civil liberties, or the environmental impact of shale-drilling for methane are not "aiding and abetting" Al Qaeda.

This is a direct threat to Civil Liberty and our Constitutionally guaranteed Rights.