Pluralistic: A "secure" system can be the most dangerous of all (13 July 2023)

Today’s links A “secure” system can be the most dangerous of all: Who we secure FOR – and AGAINST – reveals our true priorities and values. Hey look at this: Delights to delectate. This day in history: 2013 Colophon: Recent publications, upcoming/recent appearances, current writing projects, current reading A “secure” system can be the most dangerous of all (permalink) Two decades ago, my life changed forever: hearing Bruce Schneier explain that “security” doesn’t exist in the abstract. You can only be secure from some threat. A fire alarm won’t protect you from burglaries. A condom won’t protect you from mass shootings. It seems obvious, but how often do we hear about “security” without any mention of who is being made secure, and from which threat? Take the US welfare system. It is very “secure” in that it is hedged in by a thicket of red-tape, audits, inspections and onerous procedures. To get food stamps, housing vouchers, or cash aid, you must navigate a Soviet-grade bureaucratic system of Kafkaesque proportions. Indeed, one of the great ironies of the post-Cold War world is that the USA has become a “Utopia Of Rules” (as David Graeber put it), subjecting everyday people to the state-run bureacracies that the USAUSAUSA set endlessly ridiculed the USSR for: (The right says it wants to “shrink the US government until fits in a bathtub – and then drown it” – but not the whole government. They want unlimited government bloat for that part of the state that…Pluralistic: A "secure" system can be the most dangerous of all (13 July 2023)

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