Read this fascinating opinion piece on techcruch tech news blog site today. While it’s not clearly labeled as “Opinion” piece on a “News Blog”, from the tone of the article it is clear that the author did not intent it to be informative. This flame bait deserves no response, except for that I learned a lot reading the responses to it.
For one thing, did you know that Benjamin Franklin said:
Those who give up their liberty for more security neither deserve liberty nor security
That is so powerful a statement, the mind of this country’s founding fathers is clear. The other refreshing thing is that it is fairly surprising that somebody would say that the threat in China is imaginary and that threat in the US is real. I am 100% sure that Chinese state monitoring is _not_ fake. I have personally tested it on my poor unsuspecting aunt’s computer. Searched for cults and discover that about 30 seconds later the internet connection went down for the night. The bad part is she participates in another group that I feel is a religious cult, but one that, AFAIK, is less outlawed than the one that I searched for. She never mentioned it to me, but I’m sure she got an earful from her local monitors.
Now, the pervasive monitoring that takes place in America (and perhaps restricted to people like myself, namely those not born here and those that have not demonstrated/proclaimed their undying love for the country without requiring inspecting the ethics of its goals and practices) is as yet unproven. I have my suspicions, convenient but not consistent degradations in internet performance makes me wonder, out loud, on my blog, regularly. But it is a little more advanced than those in China. The information that I am presented with on the Internet, the speed and order at which it arrives, are all suspicious. But none of these can be proven reliably as the case of the Chinese Great Firewall.
And also, it’s really nice to see an image of the shield of the Chinese Liberation Army instead of some silly cartoon on these articles that techcrunch posts. It shows respect–in fact proper respect for a worthy competitor. I also hate to mention, it probably strikes fear in to a lot of people who have been mentally damaged from the tight physiological monitoring/control/manipulations exerted by the authoritarian Chinese government.
Like everything else in the world, you can say that the version we use today was invented in the west, but you will probably find that FUD has been in wide use in Chinese civilization long before the west invented the letters F, U and D. If you think I’m mad, just make a few Chinese friends and you’ll know, these people are much more oppressed and suffers much more than what I have ever describe here about myself
(I should quickly postfix that so that I am not persecuted for being a “China Lover”. I, unlike many other people, do not feel that being oppressed or having suffered credits a person with extra credit in society. Bombing Japan was in reaction to Pearl Harbor, Japanese Americans should not receive extra help today in America because of that. I truly believe in America, it is a country where one generation’s debt do not carry to the next).
Btw, kudos to Google images search. I downloaded that picture and uploaded to google images search(images.google.com). and it suggested searching for “PLA ARMY” and that search confirms that the shield is indeed the symbol used by the PLA. This shouldn’t be very easy considering the background of that photo is a grainy desk and it’s a slanted 3D object where as the top search results are drawings of flat objects. I wonder if they did OCR in Chinese? I have to say, also, that TechCrunch makes the PLA looks better than the PLA makes PLA look. Is this one of those, “you can do the job but I make it look good” thing?
Oh, okay, I guess Greg Ferenstein actually did do his research, maybe bought this cap from eBay and ripped off the insignia and took a picture on his desk or something.