Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Spying on our own people.

Why is it that I haven't seen people pointing out that every major dictatorship of the past Century or so has has their power cemented by extensive, unsupervised, secret spying on their own people? The Soviet Union. East Germany. Every other communist party you can name. Saddam. Pinochet. Hitler.

Why is it that I haven't seen people pointing out how bad it was when J. Edgar Hoover was spying on Americans, and how it gave him incredible power to blackmail and otherwise destroy leaders and members of legitimate organizations for his own political purposes?

Where are the conservatives, who you'd think would want to preserve freedoms? Where are the liberals, who'd also want to preserve freedoms, but also would be the first ones victimized by radicals with such power?

4 comments:

Glen said...

Mind if I vehemently agree with you for a change? :-)

D. Martin said...

What does this have to do with criticism of libertarianism.

Mike Huben said...

Sorry, Glen, I have to reflexively disagree with you. :-)

This doesn't have much to do with libertarianism. Occasionally I need to vent, and this is the only blog I'm going to try to run right now. I trust you don't mind. Be grateful I don't post a lot of technical arcana about the insects I study....

John said...

Quite amuzing that Mike Huben, who has spent the better part of a decade blogging (before there even WAS "blogging") the errancy of the libertarian worldview, now calls upon contemporary "conservatives" and "liberals" to articulate a coherent defense of freedom.

Don't concern yourself with it Mike. After all, to quash the government's ability to spy on Americans must be weighed against the freedoms of that government to do the spying. Its a zero-sum-game as "freedom" itself is a nonsensical concept. The only question is what kind of "freedom" we prefer, and why.