1. On the
coming authoritarian police states - 2
Nederlog mostly done
This Nederlog consists
mostly of remarks about some interesting independent support for
ideas expressed in earlier Nederlogs about the decline of the West, and
an update on the status of Nederlog, to which I returned five days ago.
1. On the
coming authoritarian police states - 2
argued in October
I think it is
more likely than not that Western Europe and the US are developing
towards authoritarian police states.
As I also wrote then, I much hope that I am mistaken about this, but I
am not blind, and am a
lot better informed about history and politics and philosophy than
most. There are lots of arguments why I think
and indeed it
is someting that is not simple:
It is the economy, it is the bad quality of those
who govern, it is the lack of real education in those who elect those
who govern, it is blatant idiocies the medias reproduce without being
sanctioned or ridiculed by those who use the media, it is the
protection of the few rich at the cost of the many poor, and it is the
simultaneous destruction of both the welfare state and individual
rights, because of what is claimed to
be "the war on terror" but seems to be the project to finish the
welfare state and the individual rights of citizens living in Europe
and the US to live in privacy and not to be spied upon by the state nor
to be arbitrarily detained and abused by state bureaucrats.
It turns out that Glenn Greenwald
has been thinking and indeed speaking
along similar lines. Here is a link to a speech he gave in the summer
He speaks about Big Brother - that is: about the
are our ruling elite; the supermen who are our secret service men and
women, of the ilk and morality of David Petraeus:
the supermen who are our government bureaucrats.
These are the folks who are watching you,
and are downloading your mail, and have your picture, and your
fingerprints, and who indeed also may watch you watch this speech, and
may notice and record that you read the present text, all without you
having any say so about whether this happens, or what the information
gathered about you will be used for.
Why do I think these things are happening? Here is a statistic
Greenwald gives: Every
day 1.7 billion e-mails and phones are being tapped and stored
by US agencies, to be used against you, eventually, possibly, at some
indefinite time in the future, for some reason that then probably will
never be disclosed to you, if only because some of the US agencies that
are involved are
even now so extremely secret that not even US senators are entitled
to know of their existence.
In fact, as things are in the United States, right now
you may be detained indefinitely and secretively, and right now
you may be "renditioned", in order to make you talk about whatever you
may know that might endanger or have endangered any of the supermen and
superwomen that govern
you and me, who have taken the freedom to do all these things to you
in order to protect their freedoms to do all these things so that their
kind remains in
power, and whom you should trust, because they are as superior
morality and in intelligence as are David Petraeus, the CIA and
Awareness Office. (Check out this last link!)
And if none of these things happened to you, so far, that is, if you
have not been "arrested" without a warrant, and questioned without
benefit of a lawyer, and also have not been renditioned to some hell
hole, then this must be because these
superior men and women who rule you and me, and who are entitled to
know all about you, know that, so far, you are no threat to their rule,
and also know
that you do not know anyone who is or may be.
Greenwald's speech is a frightening speech, that probably is mostly
factually correct, as you can check out also from the last link and the
links it contains.
In fact, one of the most frightening things about it is that so few
seem to care about these things, or to be frightened by them, it seems
because so few people know
how easy it is to destroy civil liberties and individual freedoms, and because
so few people know how
normal authoritarian states have been in history.
I am probably less optimistic than is Greenwald, but then I am
and I am also no optimist about ordinary men,
though indeed I do hope I am mistaken.
In any case, it is an interesting and brave speech, but Greenwald did
things I would have mentioned:
(1) most people are neither especially smart nor especially
brave, and in all known
dictatorships the vast majorities collaborated,
always and everywhere, which is how dictatorships were and could be
perpetuated so long so
often (e.g. in Russia and China);
(2) the Big Brother schema - the Surveillance State - is based
on the crazy myth that bureaucrats and politicians are a superior class
of folks - but average people tend to accept that myth, as they did in
Hitler's Germany, Stalin's Russia, and Mao's China, while
fact bureaucrats and politicians are not
a superior class of folks at
all, and the likelihood is that - as in Hitler's Germany and Stalin's
Soviet Union: in dictatorships the worst types float to the top just
like shit does in a latrine - the majority of them is morally
speaking inferior to the average, and
intellectually speaking unintelligent compared to average academics.
But then each and all of such folks belong to the state organs of the
ruling elite, and the state organs
know and control all, as they will claim, "in the
interests of all who are not terrorists", and
with vastly greater powers of control and espionage than were
Hitler's Gestapo or by Stalin's KGB.
Anyway... as I have been updating Nederlog
(see below) I have also been
updating the crisis series. Here
are the recent additions, for some
background to what I just wrote:
Note that I have been saying
the sort of things
Greenwald's speech is about since 2005 or earlier - and indeed,
this has a lot to do with knowing what the American Constitution and
individual freedom are about - and see Mill's On Liberty,
with my extensive notes.
2. Updating Nederlog mostly
Yesterday I uploaded the
texts for October 2012, most of which I wrote as texts in Notebook,
which I started because of my eyes, and stopped after having found out
that I could
maintain and edit Nederlog in ways I had not been aware of before.
Herewith the updating of Nederlog and its index
is mostly done.
I still have to check
some links and do some formatting, and also have to insert some text on
the problems with my eyes and with my health, and perhaps also expand
the summaries of my Nederlogs,
will do those things silently, except possibly for the last two.
In any case: the texts are there, and the links mostly work, and I
can't and won't make it much better than it is now.
Finally, I have also updating the crisis series some,
as I also mentioned above, and have been adding the "Crisis: " prefix
to some titles.
P.S. My eye
There will be a new PS, probably with another name. In any case, the
eye problems are diagnosed as keratoconjunctivitis
sicca, quite possibly as a part of Sjoegren's
syndrome, which is a fairly common complication of ME/CFS, but
exists independently from ME/CFS.
necessary corrections have to be made later.