ridgel wrote:> Calling Assange nihilistic (death seeking) is a bit extreme for a
> man who heads an organization that posts information on his
> website. Ted Kazinsky - now there's a nihilist, sending bombs
> through the mail as he wrote end-of-the-world manifestos. What
> Assange is doing is pissing off the U.S. government - which
> history generally views more fondly than the people living at the
> time. I bet a lot of people were foaming at the mouth when
> McCarthy went on his anti-communist hunt. Fifty years later he's
> universally viewed as a blowhard idiot and an aberation. Likewise
> the leaks of the pentagon papers had people shouting treason at
> the time. Years later Ellsberg is a respected author and
> journalist who could get invited on any major news program just by
> suggesting it.
John wrote:Assange is targeting the entire world diplomatic infrastructure, and
he sees himself as some kind of god that's going to change history.
It's a big difference.
John wrote:Assange is not attempting some "minor adjustment." He's trying to
bring down the whole system. Now, maybe you think that's a good
thing, and that the whole system SHOULD come down. I'm not passing
judgment on that. I'm just saying that he's trying to destroy the
whole system and start with a blank slate, and that's what nihilism is
You say that he's trying to "destroy the destructive forces." Well,
yes, but the destructive forces are all the institutions put in place
by the GIs and Silents. Bernanke isn't trying to destroy anything --
although he may be blamed for destroying everything.
Forbes wrote:What do you think WikiLeaks mean for business? How do businesses need to adjust to a world where WikiLeaks exists?
WikiLeaks means it’s easier to run a good business and harder to run a bad business, and all CEOs should be encouraged by this. I think about the case in China where milk powder companies started cutting the protein in milk powder with plastics. That happened at a number of separate manufacturers.
Let’s say you want to run a good company. It’s nice to have an ethical workplace. Your employees are much less likely to screw you over if they’re not screwing other people over.
Then one company starts cutting their milk powder with melamine, and becomes more profitable. You can follow suit, or slowly go bankrupt and the one that’s cutting its milk powder will take you over. That’s the worst of all possible outcomes.
The other possibility is that the first one to cut its milk powder is exposed. Then you don’t have to cut your milk powder. There’s a threat of regulation that produces self-regulation.
It just means that it’s easier for honest CEOs to run an honest business, if the dishonest businesses are more effected negatively by leaks than honest businesses. That’s the whole idea. In the struggle between open and honest companies and dishonest and closed companies, we’re creating a tremendous reputational tax on the unethical companies.
No one wants to have their own things leaked. It pains us when we have internal leaks. But across any given industry, it is both good for the whole industry to have those leaks and it’s especially good for the good players.
But aside from the market as a whole, how should companies change their behavior understanding that leaks will increase?
Do things to encourage leaks from dishonest competitors. Be as open and honest as possible. Treat your employees well.
I think it’s extremely positive. You end up with a situation where honest companies producing quality products are more competitive than dishonest companies producing bad products. And companies that treat their employees well do better than those that treat them badly.
He had come to understand the defining human struggle not as left versus right, or faith versus reason, but as individual versus institution. As a student of Kafka, Koestler, and Solzhenitsyn, he believed that truth, creativity, love, and compassion are corrupted by institutional hierarchies, and by “patronage networks”—one of his favorite expressions—that contort the human spirit. He sketched out a manifesto of sorts, titled “Conspiracy as Governance,” which sought to apply graph theory to politics. Assange wrote that illegitimate governance was by definition conspiratorial—the product of functionaries in “collaborative secrecy, working to the detriment of a population.” He argued that, when a regime’s lines of internal communication are disrupted, the information flow among conspirators must dwindle, and that, as the flow approaches zero, the conspiracy dissolves. Leaks were an instrument of information warfare.
Tom Acre wrote:Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't GenDyn speak to group trends rather than individuals. Rather than whether Assange is a nihilist or a narcissist or a sociopath or whatever, it seems more relevant how everyone reacts to the information that is now in the open. His narcissism isn't even as relevant as Obama's; in that as Obama was elected, he illuminates larger generational trends among the five or so generations that now vote.
Higgenbotham wrote:Tom Acre wrote:... doesn't GenDyn speak to group trends rather than individuals...
Yes, John is pointing out ... characterization of the Gen X archetype ...
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