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One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star. -Nietzsche

  June 14, 2013

They Intercept Everything

You live within a net of surveillance. Some say this tears apart the code of trust underpinning society. We tried to form a government that performs actions in our mutual interest, funding large initiatives of devoted believers with money from those able to earn it. Maybe we overreached and lost track of objectives.

Talking changes nothing, but perhaps you are looking to take action and return relations to a more acceptable state. What are your options?

  1. Stop communicating. Drop out and do your own thing, generating no data to feed the voracious machine. Taken as a Golden Rule or Kantian categorical imperative, this has the side effect of ending society, allowing a fresh restart. It seems a waste to throw so much away, but at least it would not passively continue in the current trajectory.

  2. Go Taliban. Cease all electronic interactions, masking everything, aware but careful to leave no signal. Communicate in person only with voice and letters, and live only in the analog world. This is inconvenient but personable -- consider how few people have human skills, but instead prefer the sterile world of technology. Food, love, and conversation is far superior in person.

  3. Protest. Even 100,000,000 people marching on the White House would change nothing. Outbursts of displeasure are discharged for no effect. Those who cross the lines of decency love it when the response is merely symbolic. The protest is acknowledged with feigned respect and then the bad behavior continues just as before. Further symbolic protest is then promoted in place of action that would change the situation.

  4. Tolerate and be open-minded. You have socially constructed an enemy out of someone who is similar to yourself, with broadly the same ideas and desires. They bleed approximately the same color blood, so let's stop looking at essential details that create undeniable differentiation. You likely need to be educated with a new perspective. This will earn you more of what you don't want. Appeasing impositions invites bolder, more aggressive and displacing impositions.

  5. Do nothing and hope future regimes don't increase size, scope, and capabilities. Not buying from enough minority businesses? You might be a professional racist. Buying the wrong books? Probably a thoughtcrime liability needing sensitivity training. Using strong language in your phone calls and email? Could be a threat to public order requiring more mandatory dulling medication. Your threat level could be trivially correlated to your obedience and willingness to repeat propaganda.

If you're going to work around a threat, you'll need a plan.

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Next: Purpose of the Machine

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