Monday, May 30, 2011

Vandals Didn't Just Take Down Rome

I detest self-appointed "guardians of the people" or "holders of truth" or "God's special ones" or any other idiotic claims to special grace that vandals and nihilists annoint themselves with.

Here is a sad story from Wired magazine of how hackers got into PBS and made a mess:
A hacker group unhappy with PBS Frontline’s hour-long documentary on WikiLeaks has hit back at the Public Broadcasting System by cracking its servers, posting thousands of stolen passwords, and adding a fake news story to a blog belonging to the august PBS Newshour.

On Sunday night, visitors to the Newshour website read the news that famed rapper Tupac Shakur had been found “alive and well” in New Zealand. The false story (Tupac died in 1996) was indexed by Google News, and spread rapidly through Facebook and Twitter, even after PBS pulled it down. “Again, our site has been hacked — please stay with us as we work on it,” read one of the Newshour’s several tweets responding to the incident Sunday.

The anonymous hacking group Lulzsec claimed credit for the attack in its Twitter feed, where it linked to several pages displaying information stolen in the hack. A calling card the intruders installed at was still live by 2:00 a.m. EDT. The text read “All your base are belong to Lulzsec.” The title of the page was “FREE BRADLEY MANNING. FUCK FRONTLINE!”
This reminds me of the Vandals that brought Roman civilization to an end. While there are many things to detest about Rome and its cruelties, the Dark Ages were a step down for humanity, not a step up. And helping to bring civilization low was not a badge of honour for the Vandals but a detestable, permanent stain on this tribe of destroyers. This hacker attack proves that the Vandals are still with us.

I support Bradley Manning and detest the US treatment of him. But I also detest this hacker group that feels it has a right to act as judge, jury, and executioner. You cannot have a civil society when elements within it decide to trash the place. I can understand wanting to break the control of the elites who control society and misuse power for their own benefit. But wrecking havoc is not a social agenda and it does nothing to advance the fundamental changes needed to make a better world.

The future is ours to shape. But we don't build a better future by trashing the world around us. A better future is achieved constructively, not destructively, by thoughtful action not infantile tantrums.

Sadly "revolutionaries" can't be bothered with the hard work of education and the slow change of turning one person at a time from the flawed current state toward a better future. But real work to improve the world is done by building, not destroying, by enlightening one mind at a time, not by defacating in your own house and playing with your own feces. My whole life has been spent being frustrated by "revolutionaries" who can't be bothered to do the hard work of changing society and instead fall in love with their own intellectual masturbation. Sad.

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