Drugs and Terrorists, Porn and Pirates

When you hear these four magic words, think; am I about to be emotionally manipulated here? Is someone perhaps going to use my visceral reaction to these terms to push something past me that I would never usually consider? Because probably, yes.

Drugs

This is the good old standby for the US government. Justification for a war and astounding disregard for human rights in Columbia, the invasion of Panama and removal  of their own ex-CIA, ex-puppet leader, and now apparently, there is an insurgency in Mexico and Central America* to be dealt with. Besides the wars, there is regular interference in the domestic policies of foreign governments , environmental terrorism, and of course, a huge amount of money that goes to the MIC. All of this to save the US from drugs, because drugs may kill some people, if they choose to use them? No, of course not. That would be silly. We all know the US government and military have no problem with drug dealers.  

What would the US really do, if it wanted to stop the flow of drugs in their country? Well, first, far more regulation of the pharmaceutical industry and medical community, then regulate the fast food industry to stop them from lacing the food with additives and sugars … oh, sorry, you mean illegal drugs? Well, first, let’s study why exactly people are becoming addicted to illegal drugs (see previous sentence). Then legalize the drugs so they can be properly regulated and the people addicted to them can receive counselling and recovery help. Far cheaper and easier than maintaining huge military systems to kill millions of people … to stop drug trafficking … which might otherwise kill somebody.

Terrorists

Ok, so to combat drugs we attack everyone in the Americas, to stage a military occupation of the entire Middle East we will be looking for terrorists, got that?

To prevent terrorists, I recommend that governments and the MIC stop terrorizing people.  No, really.

Porn

This one is so awful, it’s a wonder they didn’t think of it first. Perhaps there was a time when the MIC wouldn’t dare go this low? If so, those days are gone, as countries like Australia and copyright enforcement agencies rush to use the torturing of small children to push their agenda for a police state. But does anyone believe these  are the people standing up against child porn?

It is hard to imagine anything more horrible than child pornography. And it’s hard to imagine anything less effective than “filtering” it. Countries that claim to be blocking thousands of child porn sites don’t think perhaps their time would be better spent shutting them down? A firewall protecting one country from viewing images over the internet is a completely ineffective way of stopping child porn from being produced or viewed in that country. It needs to be stopped internationally, not have little jumping hurdles put up at various national fences.

This is a case where the internet really needs to police itself, in conjunction with effective and completely independent, international law enforcement, which does not answer to any government or other policing unit, and who are no less afraid of arresting generals than they are of anyone else.  To do this without invading personal internet privacy would require an organization that has no other motive for collecting information on private individuals, not a government with myriad enemies they would like to bring down and myriad other agendas.

The best protection against child porn is, of course, to leave it where all can find it, not just the poor demented souls that want to. If it’s there, and we have an effective agency to report it to, we can clean it up ourselves. We are legion.

Pirates

In the case of the Somali pirates, no one said it better than K’Naan. But I meant the people currently being hunted for copyright infringement. This is another relatively new one, and it appeals to the public by calling on their sense of fair play, in wanting to ensure that their favourite creative person gets paid.

In reality, a lot of our favourite creative people are indy artists, youtube performers, self published e-book writers, bloggers (cough), and buskers. Are they getting paid? Sometimes, if we like them and they ask. Or if they manage to scrounge some sort of endorsement that will pay them based on views. This system is becoming more and more common, and it is a very workable concept. Many waiters survive almost completely on tips that are enforced mostly by the honour system. If this concept became more mainstream, who would lose out? The artists would be paid, and as a bonus, would be in much closer contact with their audiences. Everyone would have equal access to information, education, and entertainment and be able to choose from a huge variety of material. The popular artists would actually be the most popular artists, chosen by the people who listen to them. The only people to be cut out of this picture are the ones that are no longer actually doing anything, the ‘industry’.

Under the enforcement system suggested, the creative people would not be paid more, because of course, all of this enforcement will cost money. The few who are paid at all will remain selected by corporations, not the audiences. The lawyer buying copyright to newspaper content, will not help the blogger whose one post was stolen by a newspaper (especially since they could prove no loss of income). And apparently the laws being enforced against hackers are not to be followed by the prosecuting organizations. The anti-piracy laws are there to protect those who can afford to hire lawyers, not the average creative person. 

Meanwhile, anti-piracy laws are enabling governments and corporations to invade personal privacy and harass individuals and organizations they disagree with. The future of this trend will provide almost limitless potential for a police state, under the name of copyright enforcement.

To prevent piracy, we need new copyright law. We won’t steal it if it’s free. Obviously, people who create need to survive, and there are many ways to make that happen without providing an excuse for a global police state.  

* Off topic, but I love how the Obama-Clinton team declare war on major continental areas now instead of fooling around with just one country at a time. So much more efficient. And they don’t have to learn geography.

8 thoughts on “Drugs and Terrorists, Porn and Pirates

  1. I’d like to see a shift in society where an actor, musician, or professional athlete does not make millions and millions of dollars. I would like to see these the most accomplished of these people live on very modest income, but not be millionaires.

    The big problem I have with this is, what do these overpaid individuals actually do with their money? They can buy a coffee table that costs $100,000, and a house to put it in that costs 100 times as much. More important than why they’re buying these things, why are we making things that cost so much?

    People like this eat dinners that cost $700, which sorta makes sense until you realize a $700 dinner doesn’t actually have ingredients or taste that justify such a price. I don’t care what famous chef prepares your dinner, a meal at In-N-Out burger that costs less than $10 is going to taste better than just about anything on the planet.

    Now, I realize I may be going into economics territory I don’t totally understand, and I’d gladly listen to anyone smarter than me offering me reasons why I’m wrong, but I just don’t see why the economy needs some teenage kid given a giant record contract and being force-fed massive amounts of money. And then we scramble to make super expensive crap for him to blow his paycheck on.

    I feel like the money should be spread around more. Make products for their utility, not encrust them with precious jewels to artificially jack up the price. America should hunker down and produce products that are produced efficiently and cheap, and perform just as well or better than any hyper-expensive alternative. Wouldn’t that make us more competitive in the world economy? Pay the artists plenty to live on and fund more art, with a good amount money left over to buy fun stuff for themselves, and pretty much no more than that.

    Enforcing anti-piracy doesn’t pay off in the long run. Yesterday I purchased Doug Benson’s newest comedy album (which was great, by the way). You pretty much can’t pirate this album, because nobody’s put a torrent up. I own the thing, and I could easily be the guy to make the torrent, but why would I? Doug Benson is hilarious, and I want him to make as much off the album as he possibly can, not because I want him to be rich necessarily, but because I want to encourage him to create more art.

    And perhaps, my contribution may give him a little extra pocket change to get a delicious In-N-Out burger himself.

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  2. Hi hexaDecimus,

    I would like to see creative people paid as much as their audiences want them to be paid. We are still IMO operating back in the days when the monarch and their friends were the only people who were allowed or could pay for entertainment, and the entertainment is now, as then, skewed by political bias as a result. Countries like the UK and the US, that we are accustomed to seeing creative genius from, are reduced to decades of numbing mediocrity, because there is so little they could say that would not offend the MIC. The US is still trying to convince people that sex is edgy and daring, to take their minds off the complete void of political commentary in their entertainment. I prefer to support someone to stand up and be a brilliant speaker against the status quo, (thejuicemedia on youtube for instance).

    The hyper-focus your media puts on entertainers is also, IMO, to distract you from the other people with far more obscene amounts of money obtained by far sketchier means. There is a huge amount of hatred directed at entertainers, and I think it is a result of a) the audiences didn’t chose them and b) the media love to show us their ‘flaws’ and their spending to deflect attention from their advertisers and owners.

    Christian Engström, Member of the European Parliament for Piratpartiet, Sweden has an interesting article on his blog on how much artists make with file sharing or without. https://christianengstrom.wordpress.com/2010/09/22/artists-make-more-money-in-file-sharing-age-than-before-it/

    I have many friends in creative and athletic fields, and most people really don’t make money in any quantity, just the few you hear about. The rest would make much more if we eliminated the in-betweens. But even more important to me is, they would be our artists, chosen by us, paid by us, and speaking for us (as opposed to advertising to us). And the key to the piracy argument may be for audiences to turn their backs on the entertainers who oppose file sharing – they will still be paid by the MIC, however.

    But none of this addresses the legislation going forward everywhere right now, to introduce sweeping censorship and privacy violating laws in the name of anti-porn and anti-piracy. These laws have no more to do with porn and piracy than the wars have to do with drugs and terrorists.

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  3. As a sidenote i just found your blog this afternoon from a link to this one in another article on ExtraTorrent. I Have been reading some of your other Articles and posts on various things , Absolutely Brilliant , keep up the great work ;> …….your Blog is Defintely going into my BookMarks…… I look forward to reading more great Articles from you in the future.

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  4. @TheGreyMongrel – Thanks, and especially for telling me how you got here, that was an interesting one. I appreciate all the comments, this is much more fun with people to talk to and it helps me clarify what I’m thinking. I will probably be revisiting the censorship stuff in the near future, it’s so important and the general public is not getting it yet at all.

    But it is very much part of the bigger revolution – we want control of our lives and we are tired of paying the MIC to stand between us. See also Farmgate Importing. The 1% of the world that control most of the world’s wealth and make all of our governing decisions are not actually doing anything except standing between consumers and suppliers. As HexaDecimus put it, “Hey, the emperor’s not wearing any fucking clothes.” And the more we get bullied, the more we will point that out.

    ‘Find Madeleine McCann by Anonymous’: http://groups.google.co.uk/group/findmadeleineanon

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  5. Pingback: Fear & Loathing in the USA | GeorgieBC's Blog

  6. Pingback: My favorite book | adamkendall2

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