Saturday, April 13, 2019

A man in chains knows he should have acted sooner

Essays by Assange at Cryptome (note: Young had a famous falling out with Assange). It's worth seeing what is going on within the context of Assange's own political philosophy of fighting the conspiracies of the powerful (see "Julian Assange and the Computer Conspiracy; “To destroy this invisible government”" by zunguzungu).
"The more secretive or unjust an organization is, the more leaks induce fear and paranoia in its leadership and planning coterie. This must result in minimization of efficient internal communications mechanisms (an increase in cognitive "secrecy tax") and consequent system-wide cognitive decline resulting in decreased ability to hold onto power as the environment demands adaption. Hence in a world where leaking is easy, secretive or unjust systems are nonlinearly hit relative to open, just systems. Since unjust systems, by their nature induce opponents, and in many places barely have the upper hand, mass leaking leaves them exquisitely vulnerable to those who seek to replace them with more open forms of governance."
and:
"A man in chains knows he should have acted sooner for his ability to influence the actions of the state is near its end. To deal with powerful conspiratorial actions we must think ahead and attack the process that leads to them since the actions themselves can not be dealt with.

We can deceive or blind a conspiracy by distorting or restricting the information available to it.

We can reduce total conspiratorial power via unstructured attacks on links or through throttling and separating.

A conspiracy sufficiently engaged in this manner is no longer able to comprehend its environment and plan robust action.

Traditional attacks on conspiratorial power groupings, such as assassination,cut many high weight links. The act of assassination — the targeting of visible individuals, is the result of mental inclinations honed for the pre-literate societies in which our species evolved.

Literacy and the communications revolution have empowered conspirators with new means to conspire, increasing the speed of accuracy of the their interactions and thereby the maximum size a conspiracy may achieve before it breaks down.

Conspirators who have this technology are able to out conspire conspirators without it. For the same costs they are able to achieve a higher total conspiratorial power. That is why they adopt it.

For example, remembering Lord Halifax’s words, let us consider two closely balanced and broadly conspiratorial power groupings, the US Democratic and Republican parties.

Consider what would happen if one of these parties gave up their mobile phones, fax and email correspondence — let alone the computer systems which manage their subscribes, donors, budgets, polling, call centres and direct mail campaigns?

They would immediately fall into an organizational stupor and lose to the other.

When we look at an authoritarian conspiracy as a whole, we see a system of interacting organs, a beast with arteries and veins whose blood may be thickened and slowed until it falls, stupefied; unable to sufficiently comprehend and control the forces in its environment. 

Later we will see how new technology and insights into the psychological motivations of conspirators can give us practical methods for preventing or reducing important communication between authoritarian conspirators, foment strong resistance to authoritarian planning and create powerful incentives for more humane forms of governance."
We can treat Assange as a religious figure, meaning that gospel writers and amanuenses can elucidate the master's words:
"A spokesperson for WikiLeaks says Assange's essay was a "thought experiment" that the organization still believes to be true. "Organizations have two choices (1) reduce their levels of abuse or dishonesty or (2) pay a heavy 'secrecy tax' in order to engage in inefficient but secretive processes," the spokesperson writes. "As organizations are usually in some form of competitive equilibrium this means that, in the face of WikiLeaks, organizations that are honest will, on average, grow, while those that are dishonest and unjust will decline.""
I'm not suggesting that Assange intended to spend years locked in an embassy and then be arrested just to weaken the empire, but this entire process may turn out to be part of the 'tax'.  I'm reminded of the phony mole that Angleton spent years trying to find, damaging the CIA in the process, a self-destructive process which only ended with the firing of Angleton.  The emotional irrationality provoked by Assange creates its own tax.

"Reporters Committee analysis of U.S. government indictment of Julian Assange" (Rottman).  The mystery of why they went further than they had to and trampled on the First Amendment is that while they really have it in for Assange, they are willing to take a risk of losing him in order to have a very conservative Supreme Court redefine the scope of the First Amendment and pull back from the Pentagon Papers case.  Of course, this means that they are making the Assange case a political issue, which would give an honest British judge - snicker - a clear path to deny the extradition (strangely similar to how the extreme politicization by the Trump administration of everything should give a Canadian judge a clear path to deny the extradition of the Huawei executive).

You can see why Counterpunch is such a mess.

"CIA's Vault 7 Files Launched New Case Against Assange - Attack Intends To Prevent Further Leaks" (Moon).

The complicated series of legal technicalities by which Assange was herded into a prison cell:  "The Legal Narrative Funnel That’s Being Used To Extradite Assange" (Johnstone).
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