Is the "Establishment" dying?


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Preacherman
May 26, 2005, 03:53 PM
Interesting article by Gary North - view it here (http://www.lewrockwell.com/north/north375.html). It's long, but worth reading. In it, he talks about the media, entertainment, universities, etc., and postulates that all of the "mainstream" or "establishment" ideas of the past decades are being challenged (and sometimes undone) by the new internet-based resources available to everyone. I don't know that I agree with all that he says, but he makes some very interesting points.

To whet your appetite, here are a few excerpts:

The Establishment at some point will face the implications of widespread disbelief in everything it says. At some point, people will not voluntarily do what they are told when they perceive their leaders as liars. When that day comes, political consensus will disintegrate. So will the mainstream Establishment’s control systems.

Beginning in the late nineteenth century, large-circulation urban newspapers shaped local public opinion in America. There were many papers, morning and evening, and each one represented one of the two major political parties. Then came radio and television, both regulated by the Federal Communications Commission, which controlled frequencies and station broadcasting power. Now the Web and for-pay satellite TV and radio have unplugged power from the FCC. The FCC legally regulates the content of only the no-pay airwaves. It does not regulate the Web at all.

Politicians in the two parties have built their power base on the basis of controlling local media. Today, local media are dying: newspapers and local TV stations. Broadcasting is dying; narrowcasting is replacing it. This will force a re-structuring of American politics.

Think of what home schooling means for the intellectual consensus. Think of the threat to the Powers That Be. The cost of textbook production has kept upstream interpretations away from most students. But now home school curriculum developers can get new views to millions of students by way of CD-ROM and the Internet. Parents who are sufficiently upstream to have pulled their children out of America’s only established church – the public school system – are ready to consider new interpretations. This is driving the academic gatekeepers crazy. Their monopoly over the media is fading. Now their near-monopoly over tax-funded education is slipping.

Interesting!

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El Tejon
May 26, 2005, 06:50 PM
Not fast enough!

Help pass Media Control to speed its demise. :)

Standing Wolf
May 26, 2005, 08:01 PM
The internet is to the world today as the printing press was to the world half a millenium ago: almost literally overnight, everything changes.

Old Fuff
May 26, 2005, 08:16 PM
Speaking from a personal perspective, I no longer get my news (except local news) via. newspapers (including news magazines to which I used to subscribe), television, or radio. They don't represent news, just opinion - usually of the left-wing kind.

Like so many others I discovered the Internet - and now there will be no going back.

P95Carry
May 26, 2005, 08:30 PM
One day perhaps - just perhaps - the web/internet - will actually bring down the media giants - well I can dream.

sm
May 26, 2005, 08:33 PM
Old Fuff's post...

So I have been doing some Security Updates and Supervising work at Mom's house. Her Portable phone does not have Caller ID. In like a 30 minute period I get all these calls from the local paper, Newsweek, Consumer Report, AARP, Time...you name it.

I "pretty much" said what Old Fuff said...

That part about North Korea and some other Dictarships needing Media Puppets might be worth checking into ...

Newsweek slammed the phone down on me. :D

Well she asked me what I really thought.... :evil:

Felonious Monk
May 26, 2005, 09:15 PM
Definitely one of the more prescient views of the new, global model of information transfer that I've seen. How have I missed this fellow's commentaries until now?

Of particular interest:
CAMPUS FOLLIES

Today, American higher education absorbs something in the range of a third of a trillion dollars a year, and this is rising by about 7% a year – the sign of government-enforced monopoly. The government-supervised college accrediting system keeps out price competition. It also keeps upstream opinions out of most colleges. But this monopoly is producing the familiar result: falling standards and falling output.

The young wife of a college professor (engineering) I know told me that at the college, where she is finishing her bachelor’s degree in June, several of her professors in the social sciences will not accept as valid any citation from a Web site that does not end in .gov. These people are crazy leftists. I mean really crazy – over the top Democrats and statists who honestly believe that their students are being corrupted by non-.gov political Websites. They are trying to keep students away from non-government-approved digits. They really are crazy. They have lost touch with reality. They are tax-subsidized nut cases.

...(a professor friend of the author) told me that his students today are extremely well-versed in digital research. They have grown up with the Internet. But, he said, there are two major problems: (1) they cannot evaluate the truth of what they read; (2) they are prone to submitting term papers that they have bought on-line.

So, we are seeing the result the triumph of official relativism in academia: "There is no objective truth." The students have bought the academic party line. They respond accordingly: (1) "One opinion is as good as another." (2) "A purchased term paper may be worth the money and risk." The Web is filled with conflicting opinions and cheap term papers.

Problem: in engineering and architecture, this outlook can lead to collapsing structures. Fall of the Roman Empire? Hmmmm.
Oh, well. Welcome to the Revolution! ;)

RevDisk
May 26, 2005, 10:25 PM
In it, he talks about the media, entertainment, universities, etc., and postulates that all of the "mainstream" or "establishment" ideas of the past decades are being challenged (and sometimes undone) by the new internet-based resources available to everyone. I don't know that I agree with all that he says, but he makes some very interesting points.

I fully expect there to eventually be an attempt at 'backlash' against the internet. Taxes, registration, etc. FCC and Congress have attempted at times to make a few stabs at the Internet. DMCA, for instance.


http://www.anti-dmca.org/

http://www.copyright.gov/legislation/dmca.pdf


I was at Defcon-9 when the FBI arrested Sklyarov for discussing weak protection around Adobe's eBook file format. That was a rather surrealistic experience. It was odd, because I expected the feds to have the thick accent. "Ve have vays of makin' you talk!" Oh yea, the DMCA also hit some college kid that figured out you could disable some copy protection software by hitting the 'shift' key when the CD was put in the drive (or just turn off autoplay). Whoops, I think I just committed a felony by telling you that. And you probably just committed a felony by reading these words. ;)

Don't expect the status quo to give up power without a fight. There is a fight beyond the Second Amendment, and a lot of it will deal with the Internet.

http://www.epic.org

http://www.eff.org


PS, a bunch of the EFF founders are gun nuts also. Just to keep it all gun-related. :neener:

beerslurpy
May 26, 2005, 10:54 PM
I agree fully Preacherman, and I have been saying as much for quite some time.

We are really living in a golden age of information and we have only just begun to feel the effects in the past 10 years or so.

I just hope that things come to a head peacefully and no one has to substitute the cartidge box for the voting box.

beerslurpy
May 26, 2005, 11:00 PM
I agree fully Preacherman, and I have been saying as much for quite some time.

We are really living in a golden age of information and we have only just begun to feel the effects in the past 10 years or so.

I just hope that things come to a head peacefully and no one has to substitute the cartidge box for the voting box.

The catholic church didnt respond pleasantly to the repurcussions of the printing press. There was the protestant reformation, the inquisition, the enlightenment, etc. They spent centuries trying to put out the fires.

Then again, christians everywhere are better off for the fact that they (unlike the Ottomans) were unable to squash the new technology and just made do with lessened control over society. 500 years and the printing press completely reversed the dominance of the muslim world. I think that one way or another, America will make the right choice in terms of embracing the internet and meaningful discussion in place of trying to force feed the proles what the oligarchs want them to hear.

trapperjohn
May 26, 2005, 11:55 PM
The young wife of a college professor (engineering) I know told me

thats My wife :D :D :D

MechAg94
May 27, 2005, 12:05 AM
One establishment may die, but a new one will form. Don't worry.

Fred Fuller
May 27, 2005, 09:56 AM
Of course the Establishment is dying. It is sclerotic, it has no choice.

This place (THR that is) and thousands upon thousands like it are evidence of the death of the old Establishment and at the same time the reason why the Establishment is dying. The Internet is many things to many people, but above all it provides easy-to-use and accessible conduits for people with shared interests to get together, discuss things, make decisions, meet face to face, share information, plan activities, get things done. All this is completely exclusive of formerly established means of 'getting the word out.'

Enjoy it while it lasts...

lpl/nc

20cows
May 27, 2005, 10:08 AM
I'm from a small town. A real small town. Every now and then I venture out into the big city and notice a few changes that have so far passed us by (for now).

There's always been an establishment. The establishment is based on the overall philosophy of the controlling generation. By philosophy, I mean the standards of what is acceptable and how things are perceived and commonly done. It evolves slowly as older members of a generation fall away and are gradually replaced by members of the younger generation who are starting their way up the ladder to becoming the establishment of the next generation.

Each generation is cultivated (or left to go to seed) by the previous one. Some generations rebel more than others, but there is always some change, good or bad (depends on who you ask). Most of the time the changes are subtle, but occasionally, there is revolution, cultural or rarely, political. The changes we see today, though they have some political repercussions, are mainly cultural.

As a teacher, it has been interesting to see change working up through the years as the next generation brings their children to school. It's important to note that there are no sharp divisions that tell the end of one generation and the start of the next. Keep in mind that I'm in a small town where change is slower and not as extreme.

The observations that I'm about to make deal with signs and symptoms, not causes and core philosophical change, but the two often go together hand in hand. Also remember that I am not judging the worth of the change, just noting it.

Each generation strives to be unique in some way and many within a generation strive to be unique within their peers. I was in high school and early college when it became the thing for a male to wear an ear ring. Only a few did it and they did it to stand out. But there were definate rules on how the ring was worn as to what message was being sent (sexual orientation was a BIG issue). As time went by, more and more males had their ears pierced to the point that it became the norm. Now they've moved on to multiple peircings and tatoos or "body art." Males and females.

Why do they do this? The answer that I get consistently when I ask can be summed up as:to be different, just like everybody else.

Now back to what I said at the beginning about getting to the big city every now and then. I went to a major water park near San Antonio last weekend on a band trip as an adult sponsor. Remember these are observations of outward appearance not judgements of moral character.

-The bikini Ursela Andres wore in Dr. No was very conservative compared to what has become commonly worn by women from age 10 to 70.

-40 to 50% of the women in the above age range had pierced belly buttons.

-70% of the females had at least one tatoo.

70% of the males had at least one piercing, half of those had multiple piercings.

-40% of the males had some form of tatoo, a few extensive (usually paired with a female in the same condition).

I now know where the major shift will go for the next generation. They will show their rebellion by refusing to allow their bodies invaded by piercing or body art! It's the only way to be different.

Henry Bowman
May 27, 2005, 10:08 AM
Problem: in engineering and architecture, this outlook can lead to collapsing structures. Can have the same effect in politics, also.

TarpleyG
May 27, 2005, 10:46 AM
Technical question. What happens if the .gov terminates the Internet specifically? Do we still have enough connections outside Internet proper to maintain it? I am guessing we do but I wonder what hurdles we'd have to jump over to keep moving on.

Greg

Crosshair
May 27, 2005, 02:02 PM
TarpleyG

Technical question. What happens if the .gov terminates the Internet specifically? Do we still have enough connections outside Internet proper to maintain it? I am guessing we do but I wonder what hurdles we'd have to jump over to keep moving on.

I don't think they can do that. First, the economy will instantly collapse. Our military won't be able to function. They may hate the internet, but while they probably could kill the internet every person in the country would vote them out. It would be chaos. Businesses would relocate out of country. It would make the 1930's look like the roaring 20's Basicly, they are dammed if they don't, totaly screwed if they do.

R.H. Lee
May 27, 2005, 02:07 PM
The Establishment at some point will face the implications of widespread disbelief in everything it says. At some point, people will not voluntarily do what they are told when they perceive their leaders as liars. When that day comes, political consensus will disintegrate. So will the mainstream Establishment’s control systems. I dunno. I think the exact opposite is what's happening. The state has been developing dependent people for a long time now, and although they might think their leaders are liars, they don't have the will, or the intelligence, to do much about it.

Also, isn't Gary North the discredited chicken little of Y2K?

RealGun
May 27, 2005, 02:18 PM
The internet is the fastest way to spread bad information. Journalism without accountability is scary. In any case, cynicism is widespread, because people don't trust what they are being told and don't trust what they read, regardless of source. Too little is objective.

Tinfoil hats are quite the rage.

shermacman
May 27, 2005, 02:26 PM
Riley, check this out:

Now here is a man with a custom made tin foil hat, shiny side out!

http://www.garynorth.com/y2k/search_.cfm

RevDisk
May 27, 2005, 05:02 PM
Technical question. What happens if the .gov terminates the Internet specifically? Do we still have enough connections outside Internet proper to maintain it? I am guessing we do but I wonder what hurdles we'd have to jump over to keep moving on.

Eh, many if not most businesses would suffer. Email is rather important, and many companies send inter-branch emails over the internet with VPN's. (ie, if you work in Department A in Maine, and want to email Department B in Washington, it likely goes over the Internet.) Moving this over to specifically leased lines would cause a tens of billions per year at a minimum.

A lot of people do banking and commerce over the internet. That'd disrupt maybe a couple hundred billion. Everything from Amazon.com to paying your Visa bill online. 800 numbers and call centers are expensive.

Longer lines at govt agencies to pick up forms or ask about certain information. Ditto agency support lines. (Instead of looking up ATF regs at atf.gov, you'd have to call the ATF.) That's mere millions to hire more temps to work the phone lines.

Phone service would be very mildly disrupted, as most major backbones are completely digital. They run phone service, internet, etc over the same lines. All the ISP's would obviously go out of business. That's oh... tens of billions.

In other words, it'd cost businesses a couple hundred billion dollars in additional expenses and temperarily lost sales as well as depriving a good number of extremely large businesses to die. The odds of this happening are near zero. Look where most politicals get their campaign contributions from. They'd cut off the politicians in a second for gutting their businesses. Oh yea, not to meantion the millions of angry voters looking for pinchforks and torches.

Again, not likely to happen.

jpthegeek
May 27, 2005, 05:23 PM
Right now, we are in transition.

There are hundreads of thousands of people out there right now, who do not use, nor have interest in the Net, or the 'upstream media'. These are like the journalists North mentioned who are quickly becoming part of the past.

The analogy of the printing press is a valid one. The Net will allow the populace to have instant access to information, but where will the 'truth detector' be for that info? That's my biggest concern because like the current 'downstream media' the 'upstream media' will eventually become what they do not wish to be and (for lack of a better word) propaganda will be the norm coming from cyberspace.

So, what relevance does this have to RKBA?

Perhaps as the populace becomes better informed, there will be an opportunity from those of us in this community to educate, because, each of us through the power of the Net will have a pulpit to the world.

Right now, during the transition, we have the chance to show these traditions to the people who dont know them now. We have the ability to reach many, many people no matter who, or where they are in the world.

See post below from GeekWithA45:

http://geekwitha45.blogspot.com/2005_05_22_geekwitha45_archive.html#111707066532740558

Art Eatman
May 27, 2005, 09:47 PM
shermacman, you're certainly correct that he went overboard about the Y2K stuff. He's not a programmer or computer geek. He, like many, got totally sold on the Y2K threat. Wha'ts interesting is that what he offered as advice on dealing with it was far better than most of the ideas and advice circulating around at that time.

Separately, though, within his own realm of expertise, he's made a ton of money in non-technical stuff: Ideas, trend-analysis and business. He's often published online at the LewRockwell.com website. I've noticed he's pretty good at economic analysis...

Art

bjbarron
May 27, 2005, 10:28 PM
Technical question. What happens if the .gov terminates the Internet specifically? Do we still have enough connections outside Internet proper to maintain it? I am guessing we do but I wonder what hurdles we'd have to jump over to keep moving on.

They don't have to terminate the Internet, they just need to filter out the undesirable elements...that would be easy.

The Internet is not a web, it is more like a sheet of plywood with various layers responsible for different things. One layer is responsible for and very, very, good at security. You could block addresses or sites in seconds across the entire world if you had access to the equipment. Programs could be patched into your computer and be used to block words or concepts. Filters could be set up at ISPs (the big bottleneck) that block concepts also.

If they wanted to do it, they could do it selectively enough to be successful in stopping dissent but not enough to hurt business.

It is absolutely critical that the Internet be kept free of government control.

Waitone
May 28, 2005, 12:55 AM
Don't get me started on the Y2K fiasco. Yep, North and lots of other pundits and media types were taken through the mud, but guess what? No one, I repeat, no one bothered to do fundamental research by picking up the freakin' telephone and calling silicon design houses like, oh say, Intel and ask to speak to one of their architects. One of two quick conversations would have demonstrated the prevailing wisdom about TEOTWAWKI was rubbish. It didn't happen so the chattering class talked themselves into a panic. I sense the same kind of activity taking place about EMP.

In the 70's North was a believer in the imminent deteroriation of American society. He advocated self sustainability and was big on technical advances like toilet paper oil filters. Now to his credit he drew a accurate bead on Jimmuh Carter and the damage he would cause, so maybe his view of the deteroriation of society can be excused.

Fletchette
May 28, 2005, 02:02 AM
They don't have to terminate the Internet, they just need to filter out the undesirable elements...that would be easy.

Yup. The government isn't about to destroy a useful tool to control information; they will seek to control it. Taking out malcontents (radical bloggers) will be the first step. They will say something like, "he was promoting the overthrow of the U.S. Government". Then those that are only mildly critical; "He was undermining the war effort". A few other bloggers taken out with McCain-Feingold for illegal "contributions", and the internet will be effectively controlled. Anyone who says something critical would have their blog shut down at the ISP and be hauled away on bogus charges. And since the web is now regulated, you won't hear about it...unless they want you to.

I think we as a community need to start thinking about alternate communication methods.

beerslurpy
May 28, 2005, 02:24 AM
Or we could take a hint from the piracy groups and host our blogs in countries that dont give a crap about what the US govt thinks. Kind of like how certain chinese groups host their stuff in our country.

The only way the US govt can control the internet is by essentially destroying it. At which point the goose stops laying the golden eggs.

Fletchette
May 28, 2005, 02:51 AM
Or we could take a hint from the piracy groups and host our blogs in countries that dont give a crap about what the US govt thinks. Kind of like how certain chinese groups host their stuff in our country.

The only way the US govt can control the internet is by essentially destroying it. At which point the goose stops laying the golden eggs.

I really wish that were true. But take a moment to analyze your analogy;

Chinese dissidents host their stuff in the U.S. because the Chinese government would shut them down if they were hosted in China.

The U.S. government will (presumably) shut down dissadents within the U.S. that are critical of the U.S.

China is now in the WTO.

WTO convenes and decides on enforcing mutual "trade" laws...see where I am going with this?

dustind
May 28, 2005, 05:46 AM
The internet and other cheap technology is the best thing that could ever happen to pro freedom types. We can finally get our voice out there.

I credit the huge RKBA victors over the last several years to the internet. Look at how big the gun control movement was ten years ago. It is pretty much gone now thanks to the free exchange og information. Also look at the types of lies that made it in the past. So many people believed things that any knowledgeable person could have debunked in minutes if only given some airtime.

c_yeager
May 28, 2005, 07:28 AM
The advatage of information availability on the internet is largely negated by the erronious nature of that information. ANYONE can put any amount of information on the internet with ZERO fact checking. That fact alone makes the entire thing a dubious source at best.

Waitone
May 28, 2005, 09:30 AM
ANYONE can put any amount of information on the internet with ZERO fact checking. That fact alone makes the entire thing a dubious source at best. So Thomas at the Library of Congress is suspect information? CBS' information is suspect? Illuminati-R-Us.com suspect also?

All three entities use the internet to distribute their product (well, I made up Illuminati-R-Us). They range in reliability from rock solid Thomas through questionable CBS to unreliable and waaaay out there Illuminati-R-Us. Are there questions because of the means of distribution or because of their individual bias and content? What the internet allows me to do is place all three side by side while I sit in my BVD's and evaluate the reliability of each one's content. Something not possible until the internet showed up. Previously I would have to go to great pains, cost, and time to collect the information OR rely on a supposedly disinterested third party like NBC or NPR or Noozweak to make an evaluation. Then I'd have to put windage on the opinion of the evaluator.

No more. Now it is quite easy for me to see who is lying or deceiving or misrepresenting or propagandizing. It is much easier and faster for me to yell "BS" .

R.H. Lee
May 28, 2005, 10:23 AM
ANYONE can put any amount of information on the internet with ZERO fact checking. That fact alone makes the entire thing a dubious source at best. And conversely, bogus information-if it's important enough- can and will be quickly exposed.

I think we as a community need to start thinking about alternate communication methods.
I've thought about this before and agree with you. Not because I think the Internet will be taken down- what if there were some emergency that required we work collaboratively? (and I don't know what that might be).

shermacman
May 28, 2005, 10:31 AM
ANYONE can put any amount of information on the internet with ZERO fact checking. That fact alone makes the entire thing a dubious source at best.
We the sheeple should wait for the official organs of the Nanny State to report the news. After all, The Nanny knows which news is fit to print....

RealGun
May 28, 2005, 10:49 AM
And conversely, bogus information-if it's important enough- can and will be quickly exposed. - RileyMC

Yes, but whose expose' will you believe? At what point is information truly factual, in context, and conclusions objective?

You have to go to a partisan source to get the version you like to hear. You trust it because it is what you want to hear or might expect. You predefine what the truth will be. I am sure I am not the only one who has a short tolerance for listening to the other side's version of the truth.

Who says Thomas is absolutely reliable? That's a matter of faith, correct? There are also closed session proceedings, records of which are not published. Since all floor proceedings are on CSPAN, a great deal of it is staged or certainly with an awareness that the whole world is a potential audience. A lot goes on in private caucus and committee meetings that we never hear about. We only see the implications or hear the spin.

Waitone
May 28, 2005, 10:53 AM
"Reliable" does not equal "Exhaustive"

RevDisk
May 28, 2005, 03:10 PM
I think we as a community need to start thinking about alternate communication methods.

There are already out there. Amateur radio networks, Freenet or any other node system (encrypted traffic through a mesh of nodes that pass on information anonymously.)

The methods already exist, just check around.

For reasons I previously stated, the internet will never be shut down by the politicians. They will attempt to censor or control the internet. The internet will see such censorship as damage, and simply route around it. If US censorship laws get too bad, move your server to a foreign country. If it gets raided, move to another country. There are more than a few 'data haven' countries out there, you know.

Gray Peterson
May 28, 2005, 03:29 PM
It's not also a matter of establishment. Back in 1985, nearly all "pro-gun" people were all conservative. Now you have a small minority, but fast growing amount of political leftists that are starting to realize that guns are in fact the human rights guarantee. Mostly because Bush is regarded as someone who'd declaring martial law is a certainty to them. That usually wakes them up.

dustind
May 28, 2005, 04:21 PM
ANYONE can put any amount of information on the internet with ZERO fact checking. That fact alone makes the entire thing a dubious source at best. The same is true of the media. Heck you would be suprised how much stuff I was taught in public schools that I later learned was extremely biased or wrong.

At least with the internet more people know that they can not trust everything they read unlike with other sources that are taken as gospel.

Fletchette
May 28, 2005, 04:44 PM
ANYONE can put any amount of information on the internet with ZERO fact checking. That fact alone makes the entire thing a dubious source at best.

Actually, there is fact checking...IF free speech, and thus an open dialog, is allowed.

No one knows "The Truth" about much of anything. We think of "The Truth" as the ideas that we, as a majority, arrive at by consensus. In the scientific world this is called "peer review".

Censorship destroys all of this.

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