The presentation starts at about 4 minutes into the video, so skip ahead if you don’t want to listen to things like the weather. Read on for my comments regarding the presentation.
I believe the Mr. Appelbaum nailed it on the head on several of the issues. While I can’t say I agree with everything, I’ve only watched it once and haven’t verified some of the information he’s talked about. The FBI trying to silence Martin Luther King Jr.? When did this information come out? I must have missed the memo.
If it came from the so-called “hacktivists” then I’ll take the information with a grain of salt. While I can sympathize with their goals and that the hacking is a “means to an end”, they’re still breaking the law, are considered to be criminals, and I can’t automatically trust thing things they find. At least part of my skepticism comes from the fact that if they are right… oh shit. I’m still a little bit in denial. My mind is still a little bit in the happy-go-lucky world I was raised in. I’d like to hold onto that innocence as long as I can, if only as a guilty pleasure.
Regardless of whether or not the privacy violations in this country are as bad as Mr. Appelbaum is saying, the point he’s making is absolutely correct. As the saying goes (not sure who said it originally):
“Beware of he who would deny you access to information, for in his heart he dreams himself your master.”
That’s one of the many quotes I like. In fact, he might have actually said that in the presentation. I’m unsure, I’ll have to watch it again another time.
The bottom line is, a free Democracy has no business withholding information from its people, or spying on its own people, and neither does it have any business enabling anyone else from spying on its people. That’s simply a big no-no. Privacy violations in the name of national security, while “good” sounding, has the unfortunate side-effect of enabling people in those security organizations from abusing the power. There has to be a way to combat terrorism without terrorizing your own people.
I encourage you to take the time to watch this video, if you haven’t already. Even if you don’t agree, you’ll get to hear a well presented argument for the privacy-advocate side of the coin.