Program Check Tunisia

I'm now apparently a full-fledged member of anonymous. Someone guided me through the process of creating a jointly-written press release, using a pad which was something I had literally never seen before. Despite it being jointly-written, I've already had to defend it in the comments in the style I'm sure you've grown used to by now. :-)

Anyway, first a programming analogy. When programming, it is often necessary to abstract a problem, and it can be difficult to do in isolation. So what I instead prefer to do is have two examples (at least) to work with, so that the differences and similarities become starker. Perhaps you could call it a lazy way of abstracting. I would say efficient.

So too what we have with the free Middle East countries. It's only when we get feedback from free and fair elections that we can really find out what people want, and how we can live together peacefully. Currently we only have Iraq as a data point. We can basically live with them. I suspect we can live with the Tunisians too, and hopefully eventually the whole Middle East. Even the countries like Egypt that need to be de-Nazified can perhaps have that done over time. If the US is unwilling to take immediate action (ala Germany), there's not much choice. In the meantime, just hope the Nazis don't get up to anything too nefarious.

Regardless, hopefully soon we will have a second data point from Tunisia, so that we can hopefully gain some more knowledge about how to liberate even more people, as well as the joy of the current liberation. And feed in to western security plans too. Not that I see much sign anyone in the west actually has a security plan other than "hope that (ie 9/11) doesn't happen again!".

But the war in Tunisia is far from won. I don't trust this government one iota. And despite the fact that I am in favour of an enhanced separation of church and state (ie anti-dogma enshrined in the constitution), I think in this case, I'd rather see the commies/islamists competing for power. I doubt that either has a snowball's chance in hell, but even if they win, so what? That's an opportunity for people to see those regimes close up, and so long as the democracy doesn't fall, they will quickly tire of their "you beaut alternatives to secular capitalist liberal democracy". Pretty much any sort of democracy is better than the previous political stagnation.

I don't think these people can get up to any mischief, and even if they had a really bad Islamist government, they're 98% Muslim, so the 2% of 10 million = 200,000remaining non-Muslims can get absorbed as refugees in the west if it comes to that. This is not like Egypt where we have to handle 8 million refugees from a definite nightmarish Islamist regime.

So I'd be much more confident that this possible/probable victory for freedom is secured if the Interior Minister was an Islamist and the Defence Minister was a Communist than the current old-regime-centric situation.

And buh - I read your previous comment - I couldn't care less if the Tunisians vote for European-style socialism. Or even Tunisian-style socialism. So long as they have freedom of speech so that I can make my case in the free marketplace of ideas, that is sufficient. Well, obviously I don't want any terrorism either, but the Tunisians are very unlikely to get up to that sort of thing. So open slather - Iraq style! 300 (or probably 150) political parties - take it away!!!

Oh, and another programming analogy. When I document how to do something, I will normally say "type in kill -9 1234" rather than the more formal "kill -9 [process id of process to be killed]", even though the latter is technically correct, and the former is technically incorrect. It is easier for humans to understand/express themselves with a real live example. I have tried to explain the philosophy before, but I haven't done a really good job of it. Here is an opportunity for a clean example.

I mentioned before that Anonymous were doing the morally correct thing (I wasn't - I can only recognize it for what it is). In my theory of what a perfect prophet should be doing (as Jesus is held up to be), is that he should have been doing what Anonymous was doing - freeing 10 million Tunisians rather than trying to break the back of the IBM and Microsoft monopolies. So this is the standard I use myself to judge my own actions in the world, as well as others. I consider human freedom to be the paramount concern. And if this premise is rejected out of hand, well, I don't have much else to say. But to anyone who accepts this non-radical premise, the correct thing to be doing in the world on January 2nd, 2011, was trying to raise the profile of the Tunisian revolutionaries, so that they may hopefully be successful. Anonymous did that. I did not. I was not there, when I could have been. Thus I was not taking the correct moral action, thus I am not perfect (and if a prophet needs to be perfect in your definitions, then I am not a prophet, by definition).

However, I did at least turn up after the event and thank them for doing the right thing. Similar to how I thanked Bush for doing the right thing. If everyone was simply thanking people for good reason, we'd be well on our way to world freedom. The problem has always been people deriding an action that resulted in freedom for millions of people. Not with regards to Tunisia (well, pricks like Gadaffi derided it), but with regards to places like Iraq. And the second-best thing is to at least ask after the event if there is anything that can be done to secure that freedom (or support governments - EU perhaps? - who are willing to take an action to secure that freedom - instead of protesting that it is interference in a sovereign country, or that Tunisians aren't ready for democracy, or whatever crap Gadaffi comes up with, etc etc).

So my expectation is that all these self-proclaimed prophets on the planet should be doing actions like this (and NOT actions like pouring money into a black hole in Africa, or supporting fuckwits like Gates who squander valuable resources like that). The fact that the other "prophets" are nowhere to be seen in places like the Iraqi blogs is the conclusive evidence that they aren't even close. There were non-prophets in the Iraqi blogs too. Distinguishing the two is a lesson for another post.

P.S. Isn't this beautiful to watch too?

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