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zhao
05-12-2011, 07:28 AM
i'm sure most here are already aware of these latest developments, but just in case:

1. first we have the last week passing of the National Defense Authorization Act (which, we'll see, but something tells me ain't gon get vetoed):


A provision of S. 1867, written by Senators John McCain and Carl Levin, declares American soil a battlefield and allows the President and all future Chief Executives to order the military to arrest and detain American citizens, innocent or not, without charge or trial.


Section 1031(b)(2) "includ(es) ANY PERSON who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces."


This means that, in the near future, a controversial Twitter post, attending a peaceful protest, or publishing an anti-Congress critique or anti-TSA rant on Google+ could land you "indefinite detention" for life, in the wording of the bill. No access to a lawyer, no access to trial.

more: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-new-national-defense-authorization-act-is-ridiculously-scary-2011-11#comments#ixzz1fdp8nJUM



Senator Rand Paul: My question would be, under the provisions, would it be possible that an American citizen could be declared an 'enemy combatant' and sent to Guantanamo Bay, and detained indefinitely?

Senator McCain: I think that as long as that individual, NO MATTER WHO THEY ARE, if they POSE A THREAT to the security of the United States of America, should not be allowed to continue the threat.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUHh1iqe43w&feature=player_embedded

2. then we have


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmzTqHOfVvE&feature=player_embedded

which follows reports from 2008 and earlier -- one continued story of domestic militarization.


The U.S. military expects to have 20,000 uniformed troops inside the United States by 2011 trained to help state and local officials respond to a nuclear terrorist attack or other domestic catastrophe, according to Pentagon officials.

The long-planned shift in the Defense Department's role in homeland security was recently backed with funding and troop commitments after years of prodding by Congress and outside experts, defense analysts said.

Military preparations for a domestic weapon-of-mass-destruction attack have been underway since at least 1996 ... In 2005, a new Pentagon homeland defense strategy emphasized "preparing for multiple, simultaneous mass casualty incidents." ... In late 2007, Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England signed a directive approving more than $556 million over five years to set up the three response teams, known as CBRNE Consequence Management Response Forces.

more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/11/30/AR2008113002217.html

youbetcha it is happening. yessireebob!

luka
05-12-2011, 08:21 AM
you know zhao i wouldnt admit this to anyone else on dissensus but often i really do think they are preparing for something. my tendency is to think of it being a sudden enviromental meltdown or a peak oil thing or soemthing but i guess it could actually just be cos they like fascism.

zhao
05-12-2011, 12:18 PM
you know zhao i wouldnt admit this to anyone else on dissensus but often i really do think they are preparing for something. my tendency is to think of it being a sudden enviromental meltdown or a peak oil thing or soemthing but i guess it could actually just be cos they like fascism.

i guess conspiracy theories are legitimate when they become front page news...

all of this has been in the planning for 20 years or more, and i'm sure OWS added even more reason for them...

baboon2004
05-12-2011, 03:02 PM
what i fail to understand is how the old line about the US being built on the principles of democracy and freedom can possuibly still be trotted out? it was (obviously) built on genocide and slavery, as most empires in history (all?) have been to some extent.

i haven't read much about this act, but it sounds terrifying. unsurprising, but terrifying.

Mr. Tea
05-12-2011, 03:12 PM
That's it, it's the inevitability of it. Same thing's happening in Britain, although perhaps still a few steps behind (for now). It makes a mockery of the idea of democracy when programmes like this are so inevitable, as they're mandated by forces bigger than any one party and would be pushed through in some form or another regardless of which party is in charge. I mean, the "Coalition" doesn't seem to be terribly keen on dismantling any of the security-state apparatus set up under Blair and Brown, quite the opposite in fact.

zhao
05-12-2011, 03:35 PM
what i fail to understand is how the old line about the US being built on the principles of democracy and freedom can possuibly still be trotted out?

a classic case of people discounting what they see with their own eyes, and holding on to contradictory and nonsensical prevailing ideology as has been ingrained into their belief system.

(like those in the 16th century who lived by the beach who see ships coming in MAST FIRST every day, yet still choosing to believe that the earth is flat)

baboon2004
05-12-2011, 03:59 PM
it's a very human trait, to fit in with society by repressing things that don't fit in with the prevailing rhetoric, and probably its most terrifying/crazy making. obvuiously holocaust scholars have writen a lot about it. I guess i don't mean i'm surprised by it really, but that not to be surprised by it leaves one with a very dim view of humanity.

Thought crimes are around the corner.

http://twitpic.com/7nu4b2#.TtuRAfe3RoU.facebook there's this too in the Uk, which presumably is genuine (partly because it's eminently dull and stupid enough to be genuine). depressing times.

Mr. Tea
05-12-2011, 04:20 PM
http://twitpic.com/7nu4b2#.TtuRAfe3RoU.facebook there's this too in the Uk, which presumably is genuine (partly because it's eminently dull and stupid enough to be genuine). depressing times.

Yeah, it's the conflation of peaceful protest and legitimate activism with EXTREMISM and TERRORISM that's so worrying. Pretty soon 'peaceful protest' will be a total oxymoron in most people's eyes, as even the most hippyish, non-violent protestors are lumped in yet again with rioters and looters by the government and right-wing media.

I mean, when was the last time any act that could be called 'terrorism' was committed or plotted in this country by anyone operating under a straight-up anti-capitalist banner? The IRA, various al-Qa'eda associates or wannabes, the odd white-supermacist lone gunman, yes, but there was never a Bader-Meinhof tendency in Britain AFAIK.

bruno
05-12-2011, 04:25 PM
i think they're preparing (rightly) for societal breakdown, mass civil unrest and so on. in that scenario, democracy is completely secondary. it's convenient in times of peace, but inconvenient when people are upset and actually want a say in the way things are run. the illusion that democracy is important to a u.s. senator, of all people, needs to be shattered, it's not. what does one need to run for the post? an obscene amount of money. what industries make the most money (besides narcotics)? the military/arms industry, finance, security and so on. these are the people who actually run our democracies, and they want their money's worth. nothing is free in life. democracy is secondary to these interests, and secondary to most of us who live lives of no consequence in these democracies, i'm sorry to say.

bruno
05-12-2011, 05:00 PM
but there was never a Bader-Meinhof tendency in Britain AFAIK.

don't forget the angy brigade, tea. and king mob:


King Mob was also responsible for various attacks on art galleries

on a serious note, europe and the uk engaged in a war 'by any means necessary' against any groups deemed a threat, long before the current endless war nonsense. many of these groups were infiltrated, radicalised and thus comprehensively discredited by gladio-style counter-intelligence. you see the same thing with police agents provocateurs, it's an international practise that works because it takes very little to delegitimise an entire group. bomb-makers aside, the treatment of people with legitimate grievances as terrorists is a very old thing, this is not a new phenomenon.

bruno
05-12-2011, 05:07 PM
it's also hugely profitable.

baboon2004
05-12-2011, 06:07 PM
Yeah, it's the conflation of peaceful protest and legitimate activism with EXTREMISM and TERRORISM that's so worrying. Pretty soon 'peaceful protest' will be a total oxymoron in most people's eyes, as even the most hippyish, non-violent protestors are lumped in yet again with rioters and looters by the government and right-wing media.

I mean, when was the last time any act that could be called 'terrorism' was committed or plotted in this country by anyone operating under a straight-up anti-capitalist banner? The IRA, various al-Qa'eda associates or wannabes, the odd white-supermacist lone gunman, yes, but there was never a Bader-Meinhof tendency in Britain AFAIK.

as discussed elsewhere i disagree 200% with this presentation of the riots as less political than OLSX - see Rodney King riots, the French revolution and a hundred other political protests that were presented as pure looting/rioting in their homelands, but (often) legit political protest abroad even though looting (and worse) occurred as it always will when a society is massively economically unjust and people are very angry about this - but that's not the argument at hand.

Main point, as you say, is that no-one could argue that acts of violence against civilians have been committed by OLSX in any shape or form, so that legal protest is being squeezed into nothingness.

Edit: On reflection, those two points are linked. Through recent events, a lnew generation of middle class people that didn't live thru the 80s is (viscerally, rather than just intellectually) coming to see just how brutal the state is, and how little it cares about their 'liberties' when they dare to oppose it, which is something that a lot of people who've grownup in poverty have known very well for years/their whole life.

A lot of people go through life repressing the fact that there is no overarching authority that is just and equal, and they can get away with this bit of repression precisely because they never come into conflict with the law/never find themselves in a compromising situation economically or politically (being stopped and searched for no reason other than skin colour, for example). I think that's understndable (though deeply probelmatic) because most (?) people are brought up with fantasies of a confluence between ethics and the law that just bears little to no relation to how power actually operates. I know I was, and it's depressing to realise how powerless/subject to a largely amoral system of law, one is.

baboon2004
05-12-2011, 06:21 PM
on a serious note, europe and the uk engaged in a war 'by any means necessary' against any groups deemed a threat, long before the current endless war nonsense. many of these groups were infiltrated, radicalised and thus comprehensively discredited by gladio-style counter-intelligence. you see the same thing with police agents provocateurs, it's an international practise that works because it takes very little to delegitimise an entire group. bomb-makers aside, the treatment of people with legitimate grievances as terrorists is a very old thing, this is not a new phenomenon.

absolutely. it's the way it's always been. it's too easy (I certainly have let myself do this) to believe in some fiction that things used to be different, but they really didn't. All of this stuff should be completely unsurprising because it's a continuation of regular practice...that's the depressing thing.

baboon2004
05-12-2011, 06:28 PM
Italy's austerity 'package': "The package approved by the cabinet in emergency session on Sunday did not contain a one-off wealth tax or even, as widely leaked, an increase in income tax for high earners. But it did restore a property tax on first homes and push back retirement ages for men and women – both measures that will hit the less well-off."

basically wealth and power make most people into unempathic cunts. there's not really any other conclusion to draw about human nature....

bruno
05-12-2011, 07:28 PM
actually, the conclusion is that to effect any meaningful change, you must acquire power. to be immune to change, you need power. also, it's ideal to not go to jail, and to behave properly at all times, unless it's in the pursuit of power. this stuff is old as the hills.

bruno
05-12-2011, 07:52 PM
what's funny about all this is that i'm sure we were having the same conversation at the time of the romans, or the in the paleolithic with carvings or whatever, it's neverending. i suspect that it feels more oppressive because technology has advanced so much, and there is more of a sense of the world as a whole rather than isolated worlds, but i don't think we're even near the apex of total control, in fact i think we live by and large in the freest societies man has ever seen, and are fortunate to do so. that is not to diminish the importance of the conversation, but to put it in perspective.

Mr. Tea
05-12-2011, 08:05 PM
as discussed elsewhere i disagree 200% with this presentation of the riots as less political than OLSX...

Sure, just because the people doing it didn't have a manifesto or a list of demands drawn up, doesn't mean it wasn't political, I agree. All the same, you might naively expect the police and the law generally to distinguish between people who are out causing a massive ruckus and smashing the place up - or even conspiring to commit mass murder - and people who demonstrably aren't. But this is increasingly going out the window.

zhao
05-12-2011, 08:58 PM
...we were having the same conversation at the time of ... the paleolithic ... in fact i think we live by and large in the freest societies man has ever seen

everyone here should know that i categorically, utterly and completely disagree, and am diametrically opposed to this with pretty much every fiber of my being, and probably more or less familiar with the reasons, so i won't go into it.

bruno
05-12-2011, 09:11 PM
i alternate between feeling the world is a prison and not. i won't argue that i am in total control of my destiny, because i'm not, but i also know i could live in place and time where i could not write these words freely. i don't take that for granted.

Mr. Tea
05-12-2011, 09:28 PM
Well how do you quantify 'freedom'? There is not and can never be a society in which everyone is totally free, clearly.

Yes, obviously there have been and still are many societies where people have far fewer day-to-day freedoms than they have in most modern developed countries (e.g. the USA). In some fairly absolute terms, modern China is a much less free society than modern America. But that doesn't mean appallingly illiberal and anti-liberal things aren't done by the American state all the time and it's no reason not to be very worried about developments that are further entrenching this authoritarianism.

I think what galls people so much is that while China makes no pretence to being a free and democratic society, America holds itself up as the doyen of freedom and democracy.

I know there's another argument that America is somehow actually the *most* unfree country because it's got everyone conned into thinking it's a free country - I'm not sure how useful this line of thinking is, though. For one thing, "everyone" is clearly a big overstatement. And when you take it down to any demonstrable definition of 'freedom' there are clearly plenty of countries that are much worse.

bruno
05-12-2011, 09:33 PM
also, zhao, please don't take offence, but your country did not wake up to its current militaristic self yesterday, this has been building up for some time. i suppose the feeling of being on the receiving end of this stuff is what is new, and it's a shame, but let's not pretend this is something alien that has overtaken an otherwise peaceful nation, that would be a distortion of memory.

bruno
05-12-2011, 09:51 PM
Well how do you quantify 'freedom'? There is not and can never be a society in which everyone is totally free, clearly.
exactly right, i was about to qualify 'freest societies' with the world relative but thought, what is the point? communist societies thought the freedom to have education and not die of hunger was essential and a step above political freedom, and i while disagree with the unbalance i agree with the idea of health and education as a right that should be guaranteed by the state. my frame of reference for un-freedom is a state that uses violence against its own citizens, mass diappearing and torturing opponents, limiting political expression and civilian organization, and for all its flaws i live in a state that does none of these things, or at least not on that scale. of course i am not completely free as i have to pay through the nose for health care and am subject to the whim of the state, but by and large i am (relatively) free. it could be worse. much worse, in fact.

luka
05-12-2011, 09:58 PM
i think they're preparing (rightly) for societal breakdown, mass civil unrest and so on.

im glad im not the only on bruno. i mean, if you are told there is at least a 50% chance of massive upheavel in the next few years, and it seems there is a good chance of climate chaos etc then you got to take steps to deal with it. katrina was a good trial run. that showed them they're off the pace a bit.

luka
05-12-2011, 10:03 PM
i think zhao is right though. i bet there have been heaps of tribes that were freer than us. the technology for total control more or less exists and is in opertation, it just isnt being used to the degree it could be. but the potential is certainly there.

zhao
05-12-2011, 10:07 PM
also, zhao, please don't take offence, but your country did not wake up to its current militaristic self yesterday, this has been building up for some time. i suppose the feeling of being on the receiving end of this stuff is what is new, and it's a shame, but let's not pretend this is something alien that has overtaken an otherwise peaceful nation, that would be a distortion of memory.

i've said time and again that the words democracy and the United States should not appear in the same paragraph, not even on the same page.

America is a Republic, created to make money for the few, off of the slavery and genocide of the rest. Thus it is an institution firmly structured in the language of violence, founded on the virtues of inequity and injustice. and as such, the US has been actively destroying democracies with brutal force around the world for more than a century, for economic self interest.

i have also said that Capitalism is only the latest manifestation of the real problem -- a form of social organization called Centralized Power (which comes with sedentary lifestyle, agriculture, large population, etc.), which is roughly 10,000 years old.

what does bother and frustrate me immensely is your conflation of short term history with long term history -- your conflation of the history of the United States with the history of Humanity -- your conflation of the history of The State with the history of Humanity. *

that is just fucking absurd man!

* this is in bold not because i like to yell or am offended, but because this is one of the most common fallacy i have encountered - this kind of conflation - and it needs to be stressed.

zhao
05-12-2011, 10:12 PM
i think zhao is right though. i bet there have been heaps of tribes that were freer than us. the technology for total control more or less exists and is in opertation, it just isnt being used to the degree it could be. but the potential is certainly there.

tribal society, usually around 100 to 300 in population, is already structured with centralized power.

the true free form of society is band level society (population under 100), which in most cases have zero authority, zero private property, zero division of labor, etc, etc, etc.

i didn't want to go down this road again.

lanugo
05-12-2011, 10:21 PM
This latest bolstering of the domestic police state dovetails nicely with the recent US efforts to finally take on the big boys Iran/Pakistan and conflagrate the Middle East for good - WWIII, here we go!

It seems that the Arab Spring has played out exactly as its engineers desired, resulting in a systematic de-secularisation of the Middle East, as exemplified by the 60 % majority of the "moderate"/hardcore islamist coalition in the first democratic election in Egypt.

Consequently, politicised Islam is steadily gaining the upper hand against secular and nonsectarian pluralistic governments (Iraq, Libya, Syria) to set the stage for an ethnically and confessionally homogenous Muslim bloc to play its assigned part in an imminent Clash-of-Civilisations-type scenario.

In addition, a destabilised and increasingly fundamentalist MENA neatly reinforces the islamisation tendency in Europe and, for that matter, Russia, prompting the local populations to turn to authoritarianism as well, possibly of a fascist kind, to deal with the perceived threat.

With the implementation of the US-NATO sponsored European Missile Defense, expected to be operational in 2016, the elite schemers behind the upcoming global crisis are obviously aiming at establishing the basic conditions for a future internecine Euro-Russian conflict. The US is recklessly pushing forward with its anti-missile agenda so that Russia has no option but to take appropriate steps against this blatant attempt at amputating her strategic capabilities and rendering her practically helpless against a US nuclear first strike.

All this is happening in the name of a policy of tension for the purpose of fostering global war of an unprecedented scale.

- - and, quite frankly, I can't help but think that turmoil and hardship at home might be the only remedy to the morally corrupt condition of the West. Could war, as Marinetti said, be the world's only hygiene?

bruno
05-12-2011, 10:22 PM
ultimately, any state will do whatever it takes to protect its own interests, and will suspend the rights and freedoms you enjoy temporarily or for long periods of time, and sometimes enagage in atrocities against its own citizens to satisfy the central objective, which is to function as a cohesive unit and to achieve its geopolitical objectives, to think otherwise is to live in a fantasy world. it's also possible to live in a state that is not democractic and where you can live a good and happy life, providing you don't make too much noise. all the so-called western democratic states, even shining beacons of probity like germany and france engage in abject stuff outside of the bounds of the state, money is funneled in from very dodgy sources, it's only when the same logic is applied within that people begin to notice.

the u.s. is not alone in having many dark facets, zhao, and while i am fully aware that it is not the source of all evil since forever, especially given its youth, it is not exceptional or immune to human nature either. it would not be the first time in human history that a state goes against its citizens, i think on the contrary that this has been going on with or without a state apparatus and with even greater crulety since the dawn of man, i won't go into a hypothetical archaic mushroom-eating society because i think it's bullshit, but i do think that this is as good as it gets. enjoy it while it lasts.

luka
05-12-2011, 10:29 PM
i won't go into a hypothetical archaic mushroom-eating society because i think it's bullshit

it was a long time ago. its the sort of thing you just decidde whether you want to beleive it or not. theres no conclusive evidence eithere way which makes it a pretty pointless argument. we will avoid having it. you me and zhao.

zhao
05-12-2011, 10:40 PM
theres no conclusive evidence eithere way which makes it a pretty pointless argument.

false. and false.

there is plenty of evidence, not the least in currently surviving, and surviving very well, band level societies which exist in the world today, whose leader-less, private-property-less world is a reminder of how most humans lived for TENS, HUDNREDS of thousands of years, perhaps millions, prior to the advent of Centralized Power.

i fear i have to repeat myself from a year or 3 ago, because none of you fucking listen to a thing which does not conform with the lies your civilization has told you.

but OK. lets drop this about how the world used to be and concentrate on how most of it is royally fucked now.

bruno
05-12-2011, 11:10 PM
i have also said that Capitalism is only the latest manifestation of the real problem -- a form of social organization called Centralized Power (which comes with sedentary lifestyle, agriculture, large population, etc.), which is roughly 10,000 years old.
what makes you think decentralised groups are incapable of violence against each other and others? how is it that a country like finland, to give one example, can achieve its level of well-being in a peaceful way, with respect for human dignity, today, within a largely capitalist framework? surely there is a way of living freely now, with the tools we have, and with respect for each particular culture, without having to devolve into some tribal order.

luka
06-12-2011, 01:36 AM
no zhao, you are wrong, and at the moment, shrill, which hurts my brain.
whether or not you belive things were better in the old days is not a decision based on a rational examination of the availabl evidence. never can be. it is an emotional decision. there is evidence on both sides, neither conclusive. on these sorts of things i have my prejudices and preferenecs but being dogmatic about them is ridiculous.
you and bruno have both just made choices about what you want to believe and so have i. im sure we could all marshall evidence to support our cases.

luka
06-12-2011, 01:41 AM
i worked in a pie shop that had no customers. there was a point when i noticed things were not getting fixed whn they broke, orders weren't coming in, stock was being run down. so i knew they were about to close although they had kept that information fom the staff. so i told everyone. it took thm a while to get thir heads around it but when the evidence was stacked up we could all see what was happening. im getting th same feeling now with the world.
a note on languao. we have a tendency as a group to hound out nutters and buffoons. we then regret it as we make the board a more boring place. i think we should try to hang onto languo. unleses the obvious nazi symapthies gt out of hand, then we'll have to bin him i guess.

bruno
06-12-2011, 05:42 AM
i suspect one reason for all this, luka, and i'll confess this only to you to spare me the ridicule of the board, is that this is preparation for massive political and social unrest as a result of something extraordinary coming to light. a suspicion that puts me firmly in the lanugo camp (hint, hint).

and zhao, i'm not super dogmatic, i am open to the idea of an alternate form of organisation, but i am equally wary of radical change on the political front as it has traditionally gone hand in hand with violence. i believe in change as a result of a natural progression of ideas and voluntary adoption rather than imposition, and i see violence not as some inherent quality of ours but as a side effect of our greed, ignorance, lack of empathy, etc. these faults can and should be overcome (this is me being an optimist), but never in ways that violate our basic humanity and never by imposition.

zhao
06-12-2011, 07:42 AM
what makes you think decentralised groups are incapable of violence against each other and others?

violence against each other:

not incapable, but the values of many examples of currently functioning (in 2011) Band-Level and even some Tribe-Level societies suggest that violence is kept to a bare minimum and reduced to almost non-existent. things like selfishness, greed, competition and assertion of ego are intensely frowned upon in such "primitive" societies, from South Africa to Indonesia to the Amazon forests.

violence against others:

It should be clear that war arises from complex social ties, and its scale exponentially expands with the size of the social groups which are in conflict. From the level of 60 people who share everything with each other who has not much trade with other such groups, to the level of conflict between nation states which binds its citizens together with ideological conditioning, the capacity for violence increases exponentially.



how is it that a country like finland, to give one example, can achieve its level of well-being in a peaceful way, with respect for human dignity, today, within a largely capitalist framework?

this sounds like Steven Pinker's ridiculous proclamation in his new book: "Wars between developed countries have vanished...". um... vanished? really? for how long? 60 years?? that's like saying "i quit smoking. 3 minutes ago."

small pockets of peace within a constantly warring world demonstrates nothing in terms of the success of such social organization in avoiding war.

it is like saying "because 1 out of 10 Cancer patients (in this one tiny little study) did not die from it, therefore Cancer is not a fatal disease, and we should figure out a way to live with it, rather than try to find a cure".

it appears that the most common perceptual distortion when it comes to this stuff is a problem with SCALE, especially when it comes to TEMPORAL DURATION. people constantly think data from a few decades, or even a few centuries, is enough to draw some kind of conclusion. and constantly equate how humans have behaved for 10,000 years with how they have behaved for 800,000 years.


surely there is a way of living freely now, with the tools we have, and with respect for each particular culture, without having to devolve into some tribal order.

your notions of evolution and devolution, progression and regression, "advanced and civilized" VS. "primitive and under developed" are out-dated remnants of Social Darwinism, as invented by the Colonial mentality to justify its violence. Such ideas worked very well together with other "sciences" such as Eugenics and Racism in shaping the world we know today. It is the conceptual structure which makes possible things like the "civilizing nature of Empire" ---- the duty of superior white men and their western civilization to teach the brown god-less animals how to properly behave.

and can we live "freely", and peacefully, without war, within the framework of global capitalism and the structural inequity, pandemic injustice, and systematic cruelty it entails?

NO.

luka
06-12-2011, 08:05 AM
zhao, youre not thick. a lot of people here think you are but youre not. you make some good points but you sabotage your own argument by being so shrill. does the no really ned to be in massive bold print? NO OF COURSE IT BLOODY DOESNT
i dont beleive that you dont care about alienating people and being mocked. nobody enjoys that. why not make life easy?

zhao
06-12-2011, 08:07 AM
back to the main topic.

Pentagon project lets police forces – even in small towns – arm themselves with military gear (http://www.thedaily.com/page/2011/12/05/120511-news-militarized-police-1-6/)


A rapidly expanding Pentagon program that distributes used military equipment to local police departments — many of them small-town forces — puts battlefield-grade weaponry in the hands of cops at an unprecedented rate.
...
The surplus equipment includes grenade launchers, helicopters, military robots, M-16 assault rifles and armored vehicles.
occupy THIS, low-life hippie scum!!!

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 08:37 AM
i think zhao is right though. i bet there have been heaps of tribes that were freer than us.

This is probably true, but I was talking more or less about kingdoms, empires, nation-states...in most societies like these people are not terribly free. Authoritarian control and unfreedom would seem to be the norm, not the exception.


the technology for total control more or less exists and is in opertation, it just isnt being used to the degree it could be. but the potential is certainly there.

Again true, but I don't think technology is really the main thing here. How many tyranies existed in the pre-modern world? Shitloads, clearly. You don't need phonetapping technology if there are no phones. Look at the power held by the Church in Europe in the middle ages, or the theocracies in pre-Colombian America.

luka
06-12-2011, 09:11 AM
i dont know. i think th technology available opens up the policing of thought and speech in a way that wasn't possible before.
what do you think the main thing is?
what are we arguing about? im not entirely sure. as i say i think we are split by a difference in temperament. those who think modern life is not so bad, despite its obvious imperfections, and those that think its a bit fucked up. naturally we all waver between the two positions to a degree. realists and idealists or what have you.

baboon2004
06-12-2011, 10:27 AM
It's clear that most people are very much not free as soon as they try to actually exercise any freedoms that may come into conflict with the laws, which are (obviously) designed by those in power to keep those in power, in power (class/demographic-wise, rather than political party-wise).

The constant bleating about the exceptionalism of the modern West, and the extent to which it has taken as true by its citizens is what annoys ultimately - as Tea says, unfreedom is and always has been the norm. Such wilfully false 'beliefs' (I think deep down everyone, or at least most people, knows the score when you defy authority) engender widespread apathy, as if we couldn't hope for more.

As Luka says, technology makes all this stuff a little more frightening. Being sent to prison for four years (?) for what one has said on Facebook (which anyone with half a brain knows wasn't incitement to violence, just an unwuse joke) is pretty dystopian, and has made me think twice about some things I've written online. Obv it's one's choice to write on Facebook etc etc. Anyways, it really feels like freedom of speech is purely nominal at the moment, as everything political could potentially be reconstrued as transgressive of some law or other (and laws can obv change v swiftly to allow for this).

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 10:46 AM
i dont know. i think th technology available opens up the policing of thought and speech in a way that wasn't possible before.
what do you think the main thing is?

"Control" (pace Burroughs)

I guess the very scary thing about technology, particularly information technology that's become available to the mass public over the last 15 years or so (mobile phones, the internet, and the gradual convergence of the two) is that to a lot of people, it doesn't look that threatening. It's either useful, because it allows them to do their job, or simply fun, because they can use it to socialise, play games, look at photos etc. It's not necessarily obvious that it can be used as a tool of state (and corporate) control.

Whereas in the past, the technology of oppression was obviously invasive - spies and inquisitors everywhere; and aggressive - show trials, mass imprisonments, torture, public executions, 'disappearances'. Not that these things don't still go on, and sometimes with the collusion of the governments of developed, 'democratic' countries - but they're not the things that come to mind when you're looking at your privacy settings on facebook.

luka
06-12-2011, 11:32 AM
"Control"
yes, but to what ends he opined airily

zhao
06-12-2011, 11:41 AM
luka stop being such a pussy. i used the F word.* i used an oversized "NO".**

whoopdeedoo.

* to punctuate well organized, thoughtful arguments
** toemphasize points which need emphasis.

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 12:01 PM
yes, but to what ends he opined airily

Well it's an end in itself for some people, isn't it? Megalomania and all that.

luka
06-12-2011, 12:18 PM
luka stop being suck a pussy.

what on earth does this mean?
i think you misunderstand me. im not saying i find your
aggression confronting im saying your
shrillness is jarring and counter-productive. im giving you some insights into why people ignore you, or, alternatively, ridicule you. ive agreed with a lot of what you have said but as always you alienate even those people nominally 'on your side' by being so shrill and self-righteous.

luka
06-12-2011, 12:19 PM
we write to communicate and your style is a barrier to communication. its counter-productive.

droid
06-12-2011, 12:21 PM
Im vaguely tempted to unignore Zhao and see whats going on here. Anything new?

luka
06-12-2011, 12:23 PM
quite the opposite, something very very old.

zhao
06-12-2011, 12:52 PM
quite the opposite, something very very old.

lol purely typographic error up there "such" became "suck" :D

anyway as important as i think examination of how humans have lived for so long prior to centralized power is important for our future, i really did not intend to get into it in this thread, and was only provoked by ludicrous comments along the lines of the fucked up system now being the "best we've ever had"...

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 01:05 PM
Well whether or not people in distant prehistory lived in a prelapsarian paradise is not, I think, as relevant as all that to our current situation. Even if things were all hunky-dory when we lived as band-level societies of a few dozen people, how does that help us now? Those societies work when they have a range of many square kilometres of virgin rainforest or savannah per person. That is not the case for the vast majority of people in the world. There's no going back, we have to think forward.

zhao
06-12-2011, 01:34 PM
Well whether or not people in distant prehistory lived in a prelapsarian paradise is not, I think, as relevant as all that to our current situation. Even if things were all hunky-dory when we lived as band-level societies of a few dozen people, how does that help us now? Those societies work when they have a range of many square kilometres of virgin rainforest or savannah per person. That is not the case for the vast majority of people in the world. There's no going back, we have to think forward.

we have no other options but to think forward. yet the decisions we make as we move forward can be, and i should hope are, informed by ways of living which have worked amazingly for the well being of our species for at the very least hundreds of thousdands of years prior to hierarchy and subjugation.

many of the ideas from such organizational systems are of course already in circulation, as related to reform and evolving out of alienated post-industrial corporatocracy:

• eat locally.
• sustainable production
• smaller, manageable communities.
• lateral connectivity.
• horizontal rather than top-down systems.
• new conceptions of ownership.
• etc., etc., etc.

beyond socialism, seems to me the rhyzomatic way of thinking and nomadology as conceived by D&G is absolutely rooted in the kind of prehistoric social forms you all are so tired of hearing about and ready to dismiss as hippie non-sense nostalgia.

craner
06-12-2011, 01:54 PM
Yeah, but that's a problem with Deleuze & Guattari, not us. The only real way forward is racially-profiled biospheres, strict birth quotas, food rationing and deep space exploration -- in the developed world, at least. We may just have to let the rest devolve back to hunter-gatherer societies or primitive agrarian economies. Of course, this may radically reduce the number of people actually alive, but that won't matter much, because in the long run all those left will be happier and, more importantly, free from ID cards, phone taps and Section 1031(b)(2) of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act.

The one thing I don't understand in this magical thread -- what the hell does OLSX stand for?

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 02:22 PM
what the hell does OLSX stand for?

Occupy London Stock Exchange, I think.

(No, I didn't realise 'exchange' started with an 'x', either - but I guess LSE already stands for London School of Economics.)

lanugo
06-12-2011, 02:29 PM
The only real way forward is racially-profiled biospheres, strict birth quotas, food rationing and deep space exploration -- in the developed world, at least.

Is this deadpan humour or genuine 21st century elitist delusion?

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 02:36 PM
Dunno about the other stuff ("racially-profiled biospheres"? :slanted:) but the population issue has got to be addressed sooner or later - preferably sooner. Imagine how much shit China would be in if they hadn't got their population under control with the one-child policy.

And I think energy rationing is going to be more crucial than food rationing, or at least as important. Space exploration is going to have wait for a couple of decades, I think.

crackerjack
06-12-2011, 02:56 PM
i worked in a pie shop that had no customers. there was a point when i noticed things were not getting fixed whn they broke, orders weren't coming in, stock was being run down. so i knew they were about to close although they had kept that information fom the staff. so i told everyone. it took thm a while to get thir heads around it but when the evidence was stacked up we could all see what was happening. im getting th same feeling now with the world.


I'm glad I waived my usual policy of ignoring threads where Zhao goes on about fascism cos this is the funniest thing I've read on here in ages.

craner
06-12-2011, 02:58 PM
Racially-profiled, as in mixed quota of races per biosphere, affirmative action, Rainbow Communities, baby! If that's all a bit expensive, then we could shift populations from cities into rural communtities, and rationally distribute food, shelter, clothing and work. Of course, it will have to be done en masse, in one go, and globally, so we will have to abolish nation states and money, probably on the same day, or at least to a strict time table. But these things will be unnecessary eventually and are, anyway, inimicable to human progress and happiness. The quicker they go the better. Of course, some people will need to be persuaded that this programme is in their interest; but once we have abolished states, armies, security services, and centralised and federal governments, and our rhizomatic micro-communes are established and co-operating succesfully and in accordance with desired goal, everything and everybody will be content.

zhao
06-12-2011, 03:06 PM
...shift populations from cities into rural communtities... abolish nation states and money... once we have abolished states, armies, security services, and centralised and federal governments, and our rhizomatic micro-communes are established and co-operating succesfully and in accordance with desired goal, everything and everybody will be content.

OMG me and craner's paths are colliding to an uncanny degree.

the end is truly nigh :D

craner
06-12-2011, 03:13 PM
Yeah, I've been reading some of Pol Pot's stuff, Zhao. You know, history has got this guy all wrong. He had some pretty far-sighted and innovative ideas that were sadly perverted and wrecked by Nixon and Kissinger's genocidal napalm campaign of extermination. Actually, if you go back and study what he was trying to do, and apply it to now, you'll find some neat solutions to all our woes; what with global warming and the banking crisis, his writings are particularly pertinent, like a cross between Caroline Lucas and Arthur Scargill.

bruno
06-12-2011, 04:42 PM
our notions of evolution and devolution, progression and regression, "advanced and civilized" VS. "primitive and under developed" are out-dated remnants of Social Darwinism, as invented by the Colonial mentality to justify its violence. Such ideas worked very well together with other "sciences" such as Eugenics and Racism in shaping the world we know today. It is the conceptual structure which makes possible things like the "civilizing nature of Empire" ---- the duty of superior white men and their western civilization to teach the brown god-less animals how to properly behave.

and can we live "freely", and peacefully, without war, within the framework of global capitalism and the structural inequity, pandemic injustice, and systematic cruelty it entails?

NO.
zhao, i appreciate the response, but you need to tone down the aggression.


How many tyranies existed in the pre-modern world? Shitloads, clearly. You don't need phonetapping technology if there are no phones. Look at the power held by the Church in Europe in the middle ages, or the theocracies in pre-Colombian America.
i think zhao knows this, but chooses to ignore it because it doesn't fit with the idea that our current order is the most oppressive, exploitative and unjust ever. if it isn't, everything from gobekli tepe onward is a devation and there is only a difference of degree between us and the sumerians or whatever. that he writes from his computer, probably the most sophisticated thing this order has produced, and with the lights on generated by coal energy and so on is what i find ironic.

Mr. Tea
06-12-2011, 05:03 PM
i think zhao knows this, but chooses to ignore it because it doesn't fit with the idea that our current order is the most oppressive, exploitative and unjust ever..

In fairness, zhao said "Capitalism is only the latest manifestation of the real problem", which I think he dates to the time when humans started banding together in groups of more than a hundred or so. I happen to disagree, or at least think this is a very biased and emotive view, but it's not the same argument that everything was fine until capitalism came along and ruined everything.

[Which rather raises the question, when did capitalism arise? I would define it, more or less, as a system under which money itself can be used to make more money - in other words the beginning of modern banking and the stock market, roughly the early modern period. Interesting how many ancient cultures had such a taboo on lending money at interest (Jesus evicting the usurers, for instance, and the rather roundabout way lending is conducted in Muslim cultures to this day).]

zhao
06-12-2011, 05:07 PM
How many tyranies existed in the pre-modern world? Shitloads, clearly. You don't need phonetapping technology if there are no phones. Look at the power held by the Church in Europe in the middle ages, or the theocracies in pre-Colombian America.


i think zhao knows this, but chooses to ignore it because it doesn't fit with the idea that our current order is the most oppressive, exploitative and unjust ever.

nothing in dark ages europe is better than what we have now. any imbecile knows this.
again you are conflating pre-agricultural history with the middle ages.

look, one last time i will explain my position:
all the major fucked up shit started happening AFTER AGRICULTURE and LANGUAGE, about 10 - 12 thousand years ago.
in case you didn't know, the Dark Ages was about 500 years ago.
the Pre-Civilized Band-Level societies I am talking about, happened BEFORE WRITTEN LANGUAGE, MORE THAN 12,000 years ago.

let me know if you still don't understand.

zhao
06-12-2011, 05:17 PM
Bruno, it is not ok to side step replies to your statements just because they present arguments inconvenient to your position.
if you have no counter argument, you need to acknowledge the points i have made, and concede to their logic.
please address the following:




what makes you think decentralised groups are incapable of violence against each other and others?

violence against each other:

not incapable, but the values of many examples of currently functioning (in 2011) Band-Level and even some Tribe-Level societies suggest that violence is kept to a bare minimum and reduced to almost non-existent. things like selfishness, greed, competition and assertion of ego are intensely frowned upon in such "primitive" societies, from South Africa to Indonesia to the Amazon forests.

violence against others:

It should be clear that war arises from complex social ties, and its scale exponentially expands with the size of the social groups which are in conflict. From the level of 60 people who share everything with each other who has not much trade with other such groups, to the level of conflict between nation states which binds its citizens together with ideological conditioning, the capacity for violence increases exponentially.



how is it that a country like finland, to give one example, can achieve its level of well-being in a peaceful way, with respect for human dignity, today, within a largely capitalist framework?

this sounds like Steven Pinker's ridiculous proclamation in his new book: "Wars between developed countries have vanished...". um... vanished? really? for how long? 60 years?? that's like saying "i quit smoking. 3 minutes ago."

small pockets of peace within a constantly warring world demonstrates nothing in terms of the success of such social organization in avoiding war.

it is like saying "because 1 out of 10 Cancer patients (in this one tiny little study) did not die from it, therefore Cancer is not a fatal disease, and we should figure out a way to live with it, rather than try to find a cure".

it appears that the most common perceptual distortion when it comes to this stuff is a problem with SCALE, especially when it comes to TEMPORAL DURATION. people constantly think data from a few decades, or even a few centuries, is enough to draw some kind of conclusion. and constantly equate how humans have behaved for 10,000 years with how they have behaved for 800,000 years.


surely there is a way of living freely now, with the tools we have, and with respect for each particular culture, without having to devolve into some tribal order.

your notions of evolution and devolution, progression and regression, "advanced and civilized" VS. "primitive and under developed" are out-dated remnants of Social Darwinism, as invented by the Colonial mentality to justify its violence. Such ideas worked very well together with other "sciences" such as Eugenics and Racism in shaping the world we know today. It is the conceptual structure which makes possible things like the "civilizing nature of Empire" ---- the duty of superior white men and their western civilization to teach the brown god-less animals how to properly behave.

and can we live "freely", and peacefully, without war, within the framework of global capitalism and the structural inequity, pandemic injustice, and systematic cruelty it entails?

NO.

bruno
06-12-2011, 07:03 PM
i'll indulge you, zhao.


violence against each other:

not incapable, but the values of many examples of currently functioning (in 2011) Band-Level and even some Tribe-Level societies suggest that violence is kept to a bare minimum and reduced to almost non-existent. things like selfishness, greed, competition and assertion of ego are intensely frowned upon in such "primitive" societies, from South Africa to Indonesia to the Amazon forests.

it is you who is picking and choosing. for better or worse, we have more in common with the romans, greeks, phoenicians, persians, ancient china, etc. all at war at one time or another, than with these 'primitive' societies you mention. in between chopping off heads and burning villages, these aggressive, militarised societies advanced the arts, medicine, architecture, philosophy/ethics, science, trade, all the bedrock of our culture and thought that you take for granted. the naval and military has also spawned a huge body of knowledge that you put to use if not every day, at least indirectly every time you use a navigation system, that you ship something from abroad, etc. in the chilean case, part of our makeup is also a native society, the mapuche/araucanians, who fought chile pretty fiercely while maintaining their eco-friendly way of life. the nation state you live in, as imperfect as it is, is a highly advanced, largely peaceful society that has perfected itself into what it is today after a seemingly endless cycle of war in the european context. the point is that our common heritage has allowed us to advance, and it is you who picks and chooses what you rescue from it at your convenience.


violence against others:

It should be clear that war arises from complex social ties, and its scale exponentially expands with the size of the social groups which are in conflict. From the level of 60 people who share everything with each other who has not much trade with other such groups, to the level of conflict between nation states which binds its citizens together with ideological conditioning, the capacity for violence increases exponentially.

ten thousand years ago there were at most a million people spread out over the earth, of course there was less conflict. and your solution is to go back to this. tell me, how on earth do you propose to take 7,000,000,000 people and reduce them to groups of less that 100, while ignoring the existence of nation states, cultural differences and so on? this insistence on going back to a pre-agricultural state is completely insane, and i say this as someone who broadly agrees with your suggestions for sustainability and other sensible things.


this sounds like Steven Pinker's ridiculous proclamation in his new book: "Wars between developed countries have vanished...". um... vanished? really? for how long? 60 years?? that's like saying "i quit smoking. 3 minutes ago."

small pockets of peace within a constantly warring world demonstrates nothing in terms of the success of such social organization in avoiding war.

it is like saying "because 1 out of 10 Cancer patients (in this one tiny little study) did not die from it, therefore Cancer is not a fatal disease, and we should figure out a way to live with it, rather than try to find a cure".

it appears that the most common perceptual distortion when it comes to this stuff is a problem with SCALE, especially when it comes to TEMPORAL DURATION. people constantly think data from a few decades, or even a few centuries, is enough to draw some kind of conclusion. and constantly equate how humans have behaved for 10,000 years with how they have behaved for 800,000 years.

of course it's temporary, but europe in particular has had a long run of peace during which (parts, at least) have advanced greatly, people are much better off today than they were sixty years ago. better a short period of peace than none at all. and how do you propose to do away with violence altogether, separate a nation by force into little enclaves as oliver suggested humorously? what is your solution to violence that does not involve some fantasy partition?


your notions of evolution and devolution, progression and regression, "advanced and civilized" VS. "primitive and under developed" are out-dated remnants of Social Darwinism, as invented by the Colonial mentality to justify its violence. Such ideas worked very well together with other "sciences" such as Eugenics and Racism in shaping the world we know today. It is the conceptual structure which makes possible things like the "civilizing nature of Empire" ---- the duty of superior white men and their western civilization to teach the brown god-less animals how to properly behave.

you blatantly ignore the incredible cruelty and warring nature of non-white empires the world over, again to suit your narrative.


and can we live "freely", and peacefully, without war, within the framework of global capitalism and the structural inequity, pandemic injustice, and systematic cruelty it entails?

NO.
we are living freely, or as close to freely as possible within this order, right now. not all the world, unfortunately, because war is profitable, and income distribution is highly unequal, but there are tools at our disposal and knowledge at hand that are there thanks to the industrialised/capitalist/centralised societies you detest, your laptop for one thing, and that can be used to enlighten and achieve a better way of life, not an imaginary super advanced pre-agrarian life with laptops and psychedelics, but a good life with the people and cultures we have.

bruno
06-12-2011, 07:12 PM
In fairness, zhao said "Capitalism is only the latest manifestation of the real problem", which I think he dates to the time when humans started banding together in groups of more than a hundred or so. I happen to disagree, or at least think this is a very biased and emotive view, but it's not the same argument that everything was fine until capitalism came along and ruined everything.
you're right, mr. tea, it was hyperbole and i apologise. i need a cup of coffee.

baboon2004
06-12-2011, 08:00 PM
[Which rather raises the question, when did capitalism arise? I would define it, more or less, as a system under which money itself can be used to make more money - in other words the beginning of modern banking and the stock market, roughly the early modern period. Interesting how many ancient cultures had such a taboo on lending money at interest (Jesus evicting the usurers, for instance, and the rather roundabout way lending is conducted in Muslim cultures to this day).]

Tea, read Erich Fromm's The Sane Society on this - it's extremely good, few chapters devoted to just this question. it's been too long since I read it for me to be able to summarise though....:eek:

luka
06-12-2011, 09:41 PM
for those too dimwitted to notice oliver craner was taking the piss. he is a deeply embittered man. he doesnt know what h thinks about this subjct because, well, he hasnt thought about it.

slowtrain
06-12-2011, 10:35 PM
This is a good thread.

I have enjoyed it.

I think simply, a massive part of the reason for the fucked-up-ed-ness of the world today is simply too many people.

This just makes it all the more impossible to "drop out" and actually attempt to find legitimate ways to divorce oneself from the "control mechanisms" without actually defining yourself by going against them or whatever.

I'm not sure what to do.

This thread has also made me very depressed.

I might buy a gun and a house in the desert and live on DMT.

zhao
06-12-2011, 10:36 PM
for those too dimwitted to notice oliver craner was taking the piss. he is a deeply embittered man. he doesnt know what h thinks about this subjct because, well, he hasnt thought about it.

i had an inkling with the biodome. and pol pot sealed it

luka
06-12-2011, 10:36 PM
well as you know nz is the world capital is people trying to prepare for the end of the world. half my cousins are trying to grow vegetables. its hilarious.

craner
06-12-2011, 10:38 PM
biodome

Sphere, not dome.

luka
06-12-2011, 10:41 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igrELxsGpyY&feature=youtu.be
oliver stop being a troublemaker and watch this. it will calm you.

slowtrain
06-12-2011, 11:07 PM
well as you know nz is the world capital is people trying to prepare for the end of the world. half my cousins are trying to grow vegetables. its hilarious.

Most people I know have semi-successful vege gardens.

I think if there was a WWIII I would move back in with my parents. They live halfway up a mountain and fairly close to the ocean.

I only one person who is legitimately preparing for the end of the world. He is a bit nutty. I think he watches those 'zeitgeist' movies.

bruno
07-12-2011, 12:44 AM
nothing's going to happen. i guarantee it.

slowtrain
07-12-2011, 01:05 AM
Well I don't think there will be any 'The Road' style events, but I think to say that 'nothing is going to happen' is just silly, things happen every day.

bruno
07-12-2011, 05:02 AM
yes, it goes without saying that i meant an end of the world or something of that nature. and if it does happen, there is no point in worrying about it. what matters is the life you have now, who you love, what you read, what you see and feel. there is no guarantee you will be here tomorrow, end of the world or not.

zhao
07-12-2011, 10:13 AM
thanks for the reply.


for better or worse, we have more in common with the romans, greeks, phoenicians, persians, ancient china, etc. all at war at one time or another, than with these 'primitive' societies you mention.

so what if we have more in common with people from earlier "civilizations"? does it mean we are cursed to live with inequity, subjugation, and war for ever and will NEVER be able to steer our way of life toward a more manageable, less cruel path?

so what if we've had a lot of bullshit like ego and individuality and nationalism stuffed into our heads, and have NEITHER true personal freedom NOR a real sense of connection to community? if i can quit smoking... ok maybe not such a good example... if people can ever change, we can collectively choose a better way of life. if humans are anything, we are adaptable to any conditions -- after all, we did get used to THIS fucked up way of life which began only 10k years ago!


in between chopping off heads and burning villages, these aggressive, militarised societies advanced the arts, medicine, architecture, philosophy/ethics, science, trade ... the naval and military has also spawned a huge body of knowledge

1. maybe (a very big maybe) farming became necessary due to climate change 10k years ago and the reduction of natural resources, and larger populations followed. all of this MAY have been unavoidable, but i'm not sure if the evolution of power, or the specific course it took, necessarily happened the way it did. in other words, and of course this is a huge area of contention, i think the same advancements could have occurred under different social systems.

2. in summing up the gains, people always fail to consider the losses. and there are ALWAYS losses. it is a fundamental law of the universe -- you win some, you lose some, with every choice you make. and the things that we have lost by taking up sedentary life, agriculture, centralized power, are while much more difficult to innumerate, certainly epic in scale, detrimental to our well being, and has had massive consequences which i believe can explain much of what is happening today.

one small example: all the major diseases such as cancer caused by agriculture's reduction of the diversity of our diet.

the difficulties we face when evaluating these losses since the advent of "civilization" are numerous, here are a few off the top:

a.nearly zero record of the experience of our ancestors prior to written language exists, and thus we can only learn from modern day people who retain more or less the original lifestyle, and infer from available archeological data, and logical deduction.

b. the top-down social systems we have adopted ever since, from Shamanism to Monarchy to Capitalism, all have an inherent interest in preserving its own brand of order and perpetuating itself, and thus erasing and misrepresenting other ways of life as inferior.

c. confirmation / rear view mirror / and other kinds of biases. things happened this way, so we think there was no other way it could have happened.


in the chilean case, part of our makeup is also a native society, the mapuche/araucanians, who fought chile pretty fiercely while maintaining their eco-friendly way of life.

why not dare to dream: a society which takes the best of both indigenous and modern lifestyles and methods.


the nation state you live in, as imperfect as it is, is a highly advanced, largely peaceful society that has perfected itself into what it is today after a seemingly endless cycle of war in the european context.

i take immense issue with

1. "largely peaceful": the current peace and prosperity in Germany, in the US, UK, is directly dependent on the suffering of millions, and causes abhorrent living conditions in subjugated lands. driving an SUV is exactly the same as being carried by 100 slave humans -- except the slaves are somewhere else in the world, paying for our luxury with their reduced circumstances.

2. "AFTER an endless cycle of war": again: i quit smoking. three minutes ago.


ten thousand years ago there were at most a million people spread out over the earth, of course there was less conflict. and your solution is to go back to this. tell me, how on earth do you propose to take 7,000,000,000 people and reduce them to groups of less that 100, while ignoring the existence of nation states, cultural differences and so on? this insistence on going back to a pre-agricultural state is completely insane

i have never, EVER, not once, not even 1/10th of once, suggested anything along the lines of "going back to" the way it was. i have NEVER said a whole-sale return to primordial ways of life is at all possible, or even preferable.

what I HAVE always said, again and again, is that we need to learn from modes of social organization which has served us much better, and for MUCH longer than the fucked up way we live now.

this straw man of me wanting everyone to throw away the wheel and live in caves has come up so many times that by now it is really starting to feel disingenuous.


how do you propose to do away with violence altogether, separate a nation by force into little enclaves as oliver suggested humorously? what is your solution to violence that does not involve some fantasy partition?

this is another popular rhetorical fallacy: "keep quiet if you don't have a better alternative"

no: it is not necessary for the critic of a system to have an alternative solution ready, in order to make that criticism.
(a film critic does not need to be able to make a better film)

there are many better ways to organize every aspect of human life, some of which we can see by looking at our ancestors, but i have no idea how, when, or if we can make the transitions to adopt them.


you blatantly ignore the incredible cruelty and warring nature of non-white empires the world over, again to suit your narrative.

none of this has anything to do with "race", and i do not ignore any of the violence which predate European colonialism, be it the exploits of Genghis Khan or inhumane practices of the Mayans.


there are tools at our disposal and knowledge at hand that are there thanks to the industrialised/capitalist/centralised societies you detest, your laptop for one thing, and that can be used to enlighten and achieve a better way of life, not an imaginary super advanced pre-agrarian life with laptops and psychedelics, but a good life with the people and cultures we have.

and we should use them!

look. i am not saying that ALL or even MOST of humanity lived in prefect harmony with each other and the world, ALL or even MOST of the time prior to the end of the last ice age. but it is enough if SOME of our ancestors did, for sustained periods of more than merely decades or centuries.

there is a lot we can learn from that, if we only drop our modern conceit and the biases our "civilization" has cultivated in us. that's all.

luka
07-12-2011, 10:24 AM
1. "largely peaceful": the current peace and prosperity in Germany, in the US, UK, is directly dependent on the suffering of millions, and causes abhorrent living conditions in subjugated lands. driving an SUV is exactly the same as being carried by 100 slave humans -- except the slaves are somewhere else in the world, paying for our luxury with their reduced circumstances.

now this incidently was woebots reason for supporting the iraq war interestingly enough. he was th only person i talked to who supported the war and gave an honest reason for his support. he said our lifestyles are predicated on the sufferings of millions and if we want to maintain that level of luxury we cant be squeamish about violently suppreessing the thrid world. its what its all about.

Mr. Tea
07-12-2011, 10:30 AM
Haven't the time now to digest that big post, zhao, but I think farming took off because it provides a more reliable source of food than hunting/gathering. It's just that much more time- and land-efficient to have crops you can harvest and animals you can slaughter (or milk, and then slaughter) according to your own needs rather than relying on what you can forage and hunt.

baboon2004
07-12-2011, 10:57 AM
now this incidently was woebots reason for supporting the iraq war interestingly enough. he was th only person i talked to who supported the war and gave an honest reason for his support. he said our lifestyles are predicated on the sufferings of millions and if we want to maintain that level of luxury we cant be squeamish about violently suppreessing the thrid world. its what its all about.

his reasoning is erring on the side of glibness (making things even worse isn't the point, rather confronting how bad things already are for most people), but it also contains a lot of truth...

Mr. Tea
07-12-2011, 11:19 AM
And on zhao's point about driving an SUV: you can't call people who work in the petrochem industry in developing countries "slaves" without severely debasing what that word actually means, I think. Your average Arab rig jockey may not earn as much as most people in the developed world but that's a long way from being forced to work for nothing by threat of violence. Further, would he be best pleased if the developed world suddenly decided it could do without oil altogether?

Incomes in developing countries generally rise as their economies develop. This happens through selling stuff to more developed countries. This system is clearly not without its flaws but it's definitely not the same thing as the slave-based economies of the old imperial powers.

craner
07-12-2011, 11:25 AM
he was th only person i talked to who supported the war and gave an honest reason for his support

No he wasn't, he was the only person that gave you an openly cynical reason, which in your mind is the only thing that equates with honesty. How deracinated your judgement has become! O, it is sad to behold! You've spent too much time listening to all of these Lyndon LaRouche fanatics on Dissenses, that's your trouble; it's made you fuzzy-headed and misanthropic simultaneously.

baboon2004
07-12-2011, 11:29 AM
For some/many writers (see dependency theory writers, for example), it has been exactly that - a way to continue imperialism without getting one's hands dirty, a proletarianisation of the developing world labour force into what is essentially slavery at a remove.

Slavery in the classic sense isn't being forced to work for nothing either, it's being forced to work for no income that you can decide what to do with, e.g. in return for labour you get board of some kind and food (eg in the modern world, child help provided by irregular immigrants to western countries from the developing world).

If you are not being slaved in the classic sense, but only earn enough money to buy those basics (and barely enough to do that), then there's not any real difference, only in the guilt felt by the slaver. I don't think it debases the word at all to use it in these contexts - rather it ilustrates the continuity between the West of yesterday and the West of today, which are supposedly different, but in fact very much the same. Keeping people alive just to the extent that we can profit from their labour. Of course traditional slavery is still rampant, too.

Edit: reply to tea, obv. i dont' know the specifics of the petrochem industry, talking more generally, eg garment industry. Obviously a minority of rich people from the developing countries have also been entirely complicit with these happenings, just as was true in imperial slavery. There was also the changing of the British law recently re legal aid, such that funding is no longer possible in british courts for those affected by UK companies abroad (eg Shell) to bring class actions, thereby presumably allowing multinationals even more freedom from ethical concerns.

Edit 2: essentially the point of dependency theory is that developing countries' economies will only ever grow in a stilted sense if they rely upon exporting goods, ratehr than developing internal demand etc. it's what is very interesting about China's development - as long as it is reliant upon the US market, it will never usurp it as a world power, so the argument goes.

luka
07-12-2011, 12:43 PM
Lyndon LaRouche

who is this? you will deny this but you never actually gave a reason for supporting the war. it was just you striking a rather jejune pose.

craner
07-12-2011, 01:12 PM
I completely deny this.

This thing baboon is talking about is really interesting, though -- this dependency theory thing, is an argument of the right also, isn't it? People like Dambisa Moyo and William Easterly argue that aid and development programmes not only keep corrupt regimes in power by absolving them of responsibility for their own citizens, but actively immiserate them by stalling the development of internal markets -- therefore preventing them from joining the global market, the ultimate route out of poverty (so this argument goes). I don't know if this exactly matches 'dependency theory' which sounds like it has a wider and more critical scope, but it's an interesting corollary.

Autarky for all sounds like a really bad solution to me.

craner
07-12-2011, 01:16 PM
Paul Wolfowitz tried to find some solution to this when he was at the World Bank, and he was smeared and hounded out for his efforts.

vimothy
07-12-2011, 01:43 PM
Paul Wolfowitz tried to find some solution to this when he was at the World Bank, and he was smeared and hounded out for his efforts.

Jerry Pournelle's Iron Law of Bureaucracy: (http://www.jerrypournelle.com/reports/jerryp/iron.html)


In any bureaucratic organization there will be two kinds of people:

First, there will be those who are devoted to the goals of the organization. Examples are dedicated classroom teachers in an educational bureaucracy, many of the engineers and launch technicians and scientists at NASA, even some agricultural scientists and advisors in the former Soviet Union collective farming administration.

Secondly, there will be those dedicated to the organization itself. Examples are many of the administrators in the education system, many professors of education, many teachers union officials, much of the NASA headquarters staff, etc.

The Iron Law states that in every case the second group will gain and keep control of the organization. It will write the rules, and control promotions within the organization.

Or, more succinctly:


In any bureaucracy, the people devoted to the benefit of the bureaucracy itself always get in control and those dedicated to the goals the bureaucracy is supposed to accomplish have less and less influence, and sometimes are eliminated entirely.

Mr. Tea
07-12-2011, 01:45 PM
Slavery in the classic sense isn't being forced to work for nothing either, it's being forced to work for no income that you can decide what to do with

Is it? Historically it's meant being rounded up by some mean dudes with big weapons, having irons clapped on you and then being forced to work on pain of a beating - or being born into those conditions because your parents are slaves themselves. Someone in the position you describe, having no viable option but to work for a pittance (which is obviously a wretched way to live, and in practice may not feel too different from slavery) can in theory tell them employer to go fuck themselves if some better opportunity comes along. A slave doesn't have an employer, he has an owner. It's a legal condition. Slaves are property.

I'm not defending companies that pay people in developing countries pittiful wages (or anywhere for that matter, but especially developing countries, where poverty has a totally different meaning from what it does in developed countries) but there is the point that corporations exist to turn a profit for shareholders and nothing more, which is in itself amoral, not immoral. The real villains, as I see it, are organisations like the World Bank and IMF that offer 'development packages' to poor countries that come with all sorts of conditions attached, such as loans at unreasonable rates of interest or a deregulation of the labour market, which (as you point out) tend to benefit the already wealthy business owners in those countries but have at best mixed and sometimes disastrous results for ordinary workers.

That said, a company based in a developed country that turns a blind eye to appalling practices by its third-world suppliers and contractors is clearly being invested in and run by some pretty repugnant people.

Edit: obviously it's possible to effectively force someone to do something other than by threatening them with violence, I'm not that naive. But the point about big companies operating in poor countries is interesting. If people work in a sweatshop for poor wages, it's not because they literally have no other option, it's just that the other options open to them - e.g. remaining at home to tend the family plot - may be even worse. And there are all sorts of reasons why a more traditional (i.e. agriculture/pastoral/fishing- rather than industry-based) living might not be tenable any more - environmental degradation by foreign or domestic companies, land grabs by greedy governments, unfair subsidies received by producers in rich countries that make third-world exports uncompetitive, climate change, overpopulation, ethnic strife (fuelled by the above) - all sorts of stuff.

baboon2004
07-12-2011, 02:51 PM
Historically perhaps, but to see slavery as purely a legal condition is kind of outmoded, as any modern-day anti-slavery organisation would attest to - they primarily deal with illegal slavery based upon nominal employment, not declared ownership, eg enforced prostitution, home help, god knows what other types. The enforcement is not legal mostly - though one exception is work slavery within prisons, esp in the US.

I think there is a fair degree of consensus upon that. What there isn't consensus upon is the other part of the debate, that where the proposed slavery is not directly enforced by physical means (as with developing world workers who theoretically can get another job, though I'm sure you'll find that in some cases they are 'persuaded' with implied force not to do so), but rather by economic/the deliberat cultivation fo a situation where there is little other opportunity, is it still slavery? I think one's answer to that is kind of analagous to whether the phrase 'economic violence' is something that makes sense to you, or whether violence/coercion is seen as only physical.

I'd agree that corporations are amoral in the broad sense, along with almost every other institution based upon power (police, civil service etc), but to me that means that obv implies they will perform immoral acts, along with moral ones - there simply is no difference to them. Naturally I agree about the IMF, World Bank etc, but you will find huge lobbying within the World Bank etc on behalf of corporations etc, such that they're all very mixed up. Politics and corporate business are often, if not one and the same, hugely intertwined. The IMF etc create conditions that provide fertile soil for multinationals to thrive/destroy local businesses

To your edit: yeah, I'd agree broadly. What I'd say, though, is that all those other condtions usually result (or are exacerbated by) from explicit Western policies, or simple Western neglect. Obv in cohorts with a small upper class within the developing world countries, and less small in places like China.



Is it? Historically it's meant being rounded up by some mean dudes with big weapons, having irons clapped on you and then being forced to work on pain of a beating - or being born into those conditions because your parents are slaves themselves. Someone in the position you describe, having no viable option but to work for a pittance (which is obviously a wretched way to live, and in practice may not feel too different from slavery) can in theory tell them employer to go fuck themselves if some better opportunity comes along. A slave doesn't have an employer, he has an owner. It's a legal condition. Slaves are property.

I'm not defending companies that pay people in developing countries pittiful wages (or anywhere for that matter, but especially developing countries, where poverty has a totally different meaning from what it does in developed countries) but there is the point that corporations exist to turn a profit for shareholders and nothing more, which is in itself amoral, not immoral. The real villains, as I see it, are organisations like the World Bank and IMF that offer 'development packages' to poor countries that come with all sorts of conditions attached, such as loans at unreasonable rates of interest or a deregulation of the labour market, which (as you point out) tend to benefit the already wealthy business owners in those countries but at best mixed and sometimes disastrous results for ordinary workers.

That said, a company based in a developed country that turns a blind eye to appalling practices by its third-world suppliers and contractors is clearly being invested in and run by some pretty repugnant people.

Edit: obviously it's possible to effectively force someone to do something other than by threatening them with violence, I'm not that naive. But the point about big companies operating in poor countries is interesting. If people work in a sweatshop for poor wages, it's not because they literally have no other option, it's just that the other options open to them - e.g. remaining at home to tend the family plot - may be even worse. And there are all sorts of reasons why a more traditional (i.e. agriculture/pastoral/fishing- rather than industry-based) living might not be tenable any more - environmental degradation by foreign or domestic companies, land grabs by greedy governments, unfair subsidies received by producers in rich countries that make third-world exports uncompetitive, climate change, overpopulation, ethnic strife (fuelled by the above) - all sorts of stuff.

baboon2004
07-12-2011, 02:59 PM
This thing baboon is talking about is really interesting, though -- this dependency theory thing, is an argument of the right also, isn't it? People like Dambisa Moyo and William Easterly argue that aid and development programmes not only keep corrupt regimes in power by absolving them of responsibility for their own citizens, but actively immiserate them by stalling the development of internal markets -- therefore preventing them from joining the global market, the ultimate route out of poverty (so this argument goes). I don't know if this exactly matches 'dependency theory' which sounds like it has a wider and more critical scope, but it's an interesting corollary.


The Wolfowitz (sp?) saga is really interesting as regards whether you can reform a corrupt institution from the inside. He found tht you couldn't.

Dependency theory originally was from the anti-colonial left - people like Cardoso (who became Brazilian president later, i think), Samir Amin (Egyptian academic), AG Frank etc, formulated in response to modernisation ideas, (end-of-history, every country will progress to welath along the same route type thinking). it was flawed in that it didn't offer a convincing causal account of how dependency happened, but some later writers improved upon that with theories about proletarianisation etc, which seem to fit very well with the way Western multinationals operate, and are encouraged by western governemnts and Intnl Financial Institutions.

Dont' know Easterly and Moyo, but that reasoning sounds different. Dependnecy theory suggests that the developing world should develop economically separately from the west, creating large internal markets, and not try to join the global market (in the main). Stuff like ALBA in Latin America stems originally from this, i think; China's problem seems to be that workers' salaries are so low (to keep exports competitive) that despite a huge population, internal demand is still not big enough to lift it out of being an export-oriented economy. But then rich Chinese don't give a shit about that, and have blocked moves to raise wages etc.

edit: i'd agree with their point about problematic aspects of most aid and development programmes though, as vehicles for entrenching poverty further, see below comment.

baboon2004
07-12-2011, 03:03 PM
Most interesting thing I've read lately has been (part of) a book about the failures of microcredit, which purported to be anti-proletarianisation/exploitation, but just led to a debt culture that left people even more in the shit (especially women, at whom the programem was originally aimed). .

Mr. Tea
07-12-2011, 03:11 PM
Historically perhaps, but to see slavery as purely a legal condition is kind of outmoded, as any modern-day anti-slavery organisation would attest to - they primarily deal with illegal slavery based upon nominal employment, not declared ownership, eg enforced prostitution, home help, god knows what other types. The enforcement is not legal mostly - though one exception is work slavery within prisons, esp in the US.

OK, so slavery as a legal status is obviously outmoded since slavery was banned around the world, even though it still goes on in many places, as you say. What I'm getting at is that someone who is in a state of slavery - held in bondage and forced to work by threat of violence - is nonetheless in a somewhat different state from someone who does a menial, poorly-paid job just because there are no other jobs available and the alternative is destitution.

Again, not that it's OK that people are in the latter state just because it's not technically slavery, obviously.

droid
07-12-2011, 03:11 PM
Wolfowitz resigned from the world bank because of a dodgy pay deal he arranged for Shaha Riza, his then girlfriend. He appointed Bush cronies and was criticised repeatedly for a lack of transparency, consultation and consistency.

The idea that he was some kind of anti-corruption crusader is laughable.

luka
07-12-2011, 03:15 PM
thank you droid. i was just choking on my earl grey.

Mr. Tea
07-12-2011, 03:18 PM
What there isn't consensus upon is the other part of the debate, that where the proposed slavery is not directly enforced by physical means (as with developing world workers who theoretically can get another job, though I'm sure you'll find that in some cases they are 'persuaded' with implied force not to do so)

Yeah, this is well documented isn't it - Coca-Cola in Mexico springs to mind - if workers are being terrorized by their employer then that is slavery in no uncertain terms.


but you will find huge lobbying within the World Bank etc on behalf of corporations etc, such that they're all very mixed up. Politics and corporate business are often, if not one and the same, hugely intertwined. The IMF etc create conditions that provide fertile soil for multinationals to thrive/destroy local businesses

http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_kz69lu9IQX1qz605no1_500.jpg

vimothy
07-12-2011, 03:23 PM
Wolfowitz was a Bush crony. He probably had the enlightened souls at the WB in conniptions every time he came near the building.

craner
07-12-2011, 03:52 PM
Wolfowitz resigned from the world bank because of a dodgy pay deal he arranged for Shaha Riza, his then girlfriend.

And there, right on cue, like a comet in the sky, goes the smear.

luka
07-12-2011, 04:01 PM
smear? craner, leave us alone youre boring. ask my sister about this stuff if youre interested.

craner
07-12-2011, 04:08 PM
Boring? What have I done to be boring?

droid
07-12-2011, 04:29 PM
And there, right on cue, like a comet in the sky, goes the smear.

Uh-huh. The innocent, naive, morally unimpeachable and crusading Wolfowitz was cruelly entrapped by evil World Bank officials out to stymie his reforming attempts to end their perfidious and corrupt reign.

You know it's 2011 dont you? You dont have to keep on defending your favourite warmongers.

craner
07-12-2011, 04:33 PM
Well, it was a little bit more complictaed than that, but I don't want to bore everybody with the details.

luka
07-12-2011, 09:36 PM
you dont know the details youre an unemployed bookshop sales clerk.

luka
07-12-2011, 09:37 PM
my sistere was at difd at the time. i remember all this stuff.

craner
07-12-2011, 09:54 PM
I'm not unemployed, you cock.

luka
07-12-2011, 10:05 PM
all right employed sales clerk whats the diffeerence? the quality of information you are able to access is no different to what droid or me can access.

craner
07-12-2011, 10:12 PM
Yeah, you're right.

luka
08-12-2011, 06:32 AM
thats a deeply worrying response. im troubled. i dont like it. can you say something rude please. its a double act.

Sectionfive
08-12-2011, 11:50 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-16093106

luka
10-12-2011, 03:11 AM
Default

you know zhao i wouldnt admit this to anyone else on dissensus but often i really do think they are preparing for something. my tendency is to think of it being a sudden enviromental meltdown or a peak oil thing or soemthing but i guess it could actually just be cos they like fascism.

i come up with a new one, more paranoid sinister one, better one. usually if you are the West you dont need anything crude like troops on the ground., we're well behaved subjects. we do as we're told, so it looks like they expecting something going make us rowdy. what could that be? well ill tell you. they are introducing a new law that will encounter massive resistance. the law is designed to address overpopulation. there will be a lottery. every second male will be castrated. th rich will bride their way out of it, shortening the odds for the rest of us.

bruno
11-12-2011, 09:08 PM
that's all.
thank you. i don't have the time or inclination to address your points, my life is upside down, but one last comment. in my (admittedly simplistic) view, human nature doesn't change very much, when we become 'something else' we only mask what we are. some of these masks are very respectable in that they cover up our bad traits, see diplomacy, manners, and some not so much in that they magnify our faults, see ultranationalism, xenophobia, etc. what they tell us is that at heart we are irrational and fallible. we tend to favour those near to us, we are emotional, we don't think everything through, we are easily deceived and easily led to the wrong conclusions. i do think the boat can be steered in a different direction, you are doing that every day in your own way, but i don't believe you can redress these faults in a permanent way. i would like nothing more than a universal basic income, the banishment of the arms trade, a federal solution in palestine, etc., but this is all too reasonable. having said this, i admire your idealism, there is nothing wrong with it (as long as you don't kill anyone).

lanugo
15-12-2011, 10:18 PM
RT: Indefinite detention bill passes in Senate (http://rt.com/usa/news/indefinite-detention-bill-senate-905/)


Exactly 220 years to the date after the Bill of Rights was ratified, the US Senate today voted 86 to 13 in favor of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, allowing the indefinite detention and torture of Americans.


Speaking before the Senate this afternoon, Sen. Lindsey Graham (Rep-SC) told his colleagues, “I hope you believe America is part of the battlefield.” The United States is at war, he insisted, and anyone alleged to be in opposition to the US government’s game will now be subjected to military-style detention indefinitely.


As RT reported earlier, one provision in NDAA FY2012 will allow for the reinstatement of “enhanced interrogation techniques,” essentially making waterboarding and forms of psychological torture a very possible reality for anyone America deems to be a threat, including its own citizens who, prior to the ruling, had the US Constitution on their side.

luka
17-12-2011, 12:13 PM
Senate Approves Bill that Legalizes Sodomy and Bestiality in U.S. Military

luka
17-12-2011, 12:15 PM
“If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal – whether a government animal or a non-government animal – is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question,”

“If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal – whether a government animal or a non-government animal – is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question,”

“If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal – whether a government animal or a non-government animal – is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question,”

“If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal – whether a government animal or a non-government animal – is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question,”

“If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal – whether a government animal or a non-government animal – is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question,”

hucks
06-01-2012, 01:21 PM
Don't know if this goes here, but what's going on in Hungary is an actual fascist takeover, is it not?

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/19/hungarys-constitutional-revolution/

On top of that there's the impending bankruptcy of the fountry, so maybe this goes in the Gloal Financial Crisis thread, but I don't think it deserves much of a "yay!".

luka
06-01-2012, 03:48 PM
“If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal – whether a government animal or a non-government animal – is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question,”

luka
09-01-2012, 06:46 AM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/dec/13/cities-under-siege-stephen-graham
im gonna buy this. been reading about drones being used for domestic surveillance/law enforcment for a while now.

slowtrain
09-01-2012, 07:25 AM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/dec/13/cities-under-siege-stephen-graham
im gonna buy this. been reading about drones being used for domestic surveillance/law enforcment for a while now.

Kind of want to read that too.

Looks good.

luka
10-01-2012, 10:24 AM
i got it now.
scary thing about drones and robocops is that they cant turn against the rulers. they cant take the peoples side. thats a terminator future.

droid
10-01-2012, 11:32 AM
i got it now.
scary thing about drones and robocops is that they cant turn against the rulers. they cant take the peoples side. thats a terminator future.

Unless of course they get hacked. They found a virus in one of the drone control centres a while back didnt they?

luka
10-01-2012, 11:45 AM
iran claimed plausibly to hav hacked that drone and taken it over. that is true. but i was being bleak and pessimistic.

Mr. Tea
10-01-2012, 11:50 AM
Unless of course they get hacked. They found a virus in one of the drone control centres a while back didnt they?

What we need is a very clever little girl with a laptop who can turn them over to our side, like ED209 in RoboCop 3.

droid
10-01-2012, 12:20 PM
Or maybe a psychopathic hacker to shoot some hellfires at the whitehouse.

That would put a dent in funding...

droid
04-02-2016, 11:30 AM
Craner's Khmer Rouge bait and switch in this thread was one of his finest moments, and of course, Zhao fell for it.

droid
04-02-2016, 11:40 AM
A perfectly poised, sarcastic strike at Zhao's weakest point which pretty much demolished his entire weltanschauung in one fell stroke.

I remember seeing it at the time but being too measly to express my admiration.

luka
04-02-2016, 11:57 AM
I formally applaud your magnanimity droid

craner
04-02-2016, 12:04 PM
Funnily enough, Zhao was slagging me off on a Facebook thread just the other day. It was one he started claiming that English is the worst language in the world.

luka
04-02-2016, 12:22 PM
Zhao blocked me can you copy and paste?

droid
04-02-2016, 08:33 PM
I formally applaud your magnanimity droid

Not so fast. Its mainly to highlight his dramatic decline.

droid
04-02-2016, 08:35 PM
Also, of note. Luka actually engaging substantially in a discussion. There's even a whiff of earnestness.

trza
04-02-2016, 09:13 PM
i follow zhao on twitter but he doesnt tweet often

luka
04-02-2016, 09:33 PM
I was sitting on a lot of liquid acid in that period. Made me act unnatural

trza
10-02-2016, 03:17 PM
is this about beyonce at the super bowl?