cj#247/ANALYSIS> Stahlman: a rejoinder


Richard Moore

Mark submitted this rejoinder to cyber-rights, but I'm posting it also to
cyberjournal, since the message he's objecting to was posted there as


Date: Mon, 17 Jul 1995 11:47:14 -0700
To: •••@••.•••
From: Mark Stahlman (via RadioMail) <•••@••.•••>
Subject: re: your cyber-rights submission


Yup, I sent it so that it would be reposted.  And, I don't like moderators
adding their two cents but what can I do?  I guess I can send a rejoiner.
Here it is (kindly, post):


Nope, it wasn't Shabbir Safdar's post that got me going (but now I'll have
to dig it out).  I was simply trying to point out why people shouldn't be
surprized when Old Media doesn't get the facts straight and to draw some
distinctions regarding the crucial openness of New Media.  I was just
drawing some context for people.

Richard's addendum to my post deserves an open and direct New Media
response.  Bullsh*t!  Don't put words in my mouth or try to twist my

The battle isn't between "democratic" forces and "unregulated monopolists."
That's a silly-lefty/conspiracy-knucklehead way to look at this.  And, it's
going to be a very costly way to approach this looming battle if it is
widely embraced and acted on.

The battle is between those who try to herd people as if they are sheep --
left or right -- and those who oppose manipulation and favor reason -- left
or right.  Or Old Media vs. New Media -- to use my metaphor.  To cast the
enemy as a right-wing business bunch is convenient and comfortable for some
people who are still fighting some obselete class-war but totally misses
the reality of the present situation.

PFF isn't the heart of the problem.  And, yes, I am one of the dozen or so
keynoters at the second PFF Cyberspace Summit (now Richard's bells and
lights are all going off at the same time <g>) along with such hard-core
right-wing monopoly supporters as JP Barlow, Stewart Brand and Kevin Kelly.

To the extent that there is any coherence in the so-called "Magna Carta",
it is the view that the *only* way to bust monopolies is to deregulate the
bejesus out of them.  Will it work?  I doubt it.  But, it's a better idea
than trying more "public interest" regulation which ultimately they will
write to benefit themselves -- as anyone who understands regulation knows
is the end of that road.  Personally, I don't worry about the "monopolies"
much because they couldn't actually produce real innovations if their lives
depended on it.

The real problem is the "Technocrats."  These are the characters who want
to use these new technologies to pull us all into the "system."  They
generally favor "democratic" reforms and are all for high levels of
"citizen involvement."  I engaged in a rambunctious "debate" about
"democracy" on this and other forums until I decided that *no one* could
articulate why these schemes wouldn't turn into a technocrat nightmare.  In
fact, much of the talk of "democracy" here and elsewhere is explicitly and
openly a technocrat apologia.  It stinks.

Exon's unconstitutional bill isn't designed to stifle debate or support
"monopolies."  Don't be super-silly.  It's designed to clean up the net so
that more "democracy" can take place.  It's part of an effort to involve
the public in a mass-hypnosis of Internet-based polling.  It's a
psychological warfare attack.  And, for ideological reasons far too many
people are falling for it.

The "technocrats" main allies are the "liberationists" -- the characters
who want greater government involvement in our lives for the "good of the
people."  Take Gordon Cook's recent expose on Washington State's NII
efforts.  (I hope this has been reposted on cyber-rights).  The social-
welfare-types who "just want to help the children" are not right-wing
monopolists.  But, they're the ones who are building the databases and
setting up the mechanisms to mess with us all.  These are liberal/left
democracy advocates.  Phooey on this "kill the monopolies" drivel.

The history I refer to is the history of psychological warfare, propaganda
and brainwashing.  Almost all of this stuff is liberal/left politically and
it is motivated by rationale like "control the population to make sure
another Hitler never happens."  Margaret Mead wasn't a right wing yahoo.
She was a pacifist, social-relativist, futurist liberal.

I'm not an advocate of conspiracy theories of any sort.  Reality doesn't
work that way.  Conspiracies fall apart, people have their own agendas,
conflicts abound and unpredictable events enter the picture.  But, if we
keep pretending that those pathetic losers on the corporate jets are the
number one enemy, then the real enemy in our midst -- the do-gooder social
worker with Web-server -- has a much better chance to enslave us all.  We
will be aiding their lamebrained half-assed social-welfare "conspiracy."
Cut it out!

Mark Stahlman
New Media Associates
New York City


 Posted by Richard K. Moore (•••@••.•••) Wexford, Ireland (USA citizen)
                 Moderator: CYBERJOURNAL (@CPSR.ORG)

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