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The New Fourth Estate: Anonymous, Wikileaks, and –archy

Sebastian A.B.

January 30, 2013

As government and industry collude, the interests of the powerful trample the rights of the multitude. Technology has granted invasive new eyes and ears to government agencies, spurning the right to privacy. Felicitously, the individual has also been empowered with two new tools to check the corporate state: hacktivism and leaks. The press has been captured by a handful of news corporations that are generally uncritical of government and fail to expose corporate injustice. The techno-libertarian culture has birthed the do-it-yourself fourth estate—usurping the illegitimate media and furnishing a viable alternative to the cartelized press. Two entities, Wikileaks and Anonymous, have emerged under this banner. This inquiry seeks to understand their history, methods, and to ascertain whether use of the discrete figurehead is efficacious.


Complete entry


Posted by Intomorrow  on  01/31  at  01:00 AM

“President Obama campaigned as an anti-war candidate of the left. Since his election, he has upheld the Bush imperialism protocol. Obama’s trigger-happy drone strikes, refusal to close Guantanamo Bay, crackdown on non-violent protestors and journalists, banking sector bailouts and violation of the War Powers Act in Libya have tarnished his messianic image. Tireless freedom crusader and civil liberties lawyer Glenn Greenwald wrote: ‘One of the most consequential aspects of the Obama legacy is that he has transformed what was once known as ‘right-wing shredding of the Constitution’ into bipartisan consensus. When one of the two major parties supports a certain policy and the other party pretends to oppose it — as happened with these radical War on Terror policies during the Bush years — then public opinion is divisive on the question, sharply split.’ ”

Obama wanted and still wants to change things but he is handcuffed by an old-fashioned, v. suggestible and fickle American public. What can Obama do? Resign as president and slink back to Chicago to teach law? Obama wanted to close Gitmo, but for starters the jingoists pressured him to keep it open. Khaddafi was a sadist who called Libyan insurgents cockroaches, drug-fueled mice(!), greasy rats, and said he would show no mercy to them. Khaddafi got what he deserved.
A very retro (and doubleminded) American people is not going to grant freedom just like that. Americans want freedom for their own families, as they want the state to help them but they think blacks can stay in the ghettos for all they care, because they are not as pretty as caucasians and are a threat to white patrimony, white pedigrees.
Obama has been doing the best with his cards, given the bad hand he has been dealt; what is it you suggest he do? Declare the Left Libertarian Republic of America and storm the Pentagon as if it were the Bastille or the Winter Palace? Perhaps Obama should wear blue collar clothes and eat off paper plates?

Posted by Intomorrow  on  01/31  at  06:05 AM

... you are right, though, to have reservations concerning Obama, but please remember how old fashioned the interior of America is: there are people to the right of Genghis Khan here. The coasts aren’t much better, but there’s more progressive wiggle-room on the coasts. Think of ‘Frisco and NYC. Given that we are stuck with our 1789 Constitution, IMO Obama is preferable to Romney; Romney proved a corporation can be a person—Romney is as much a corporation (corporate-oriented) as he is a person.

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