Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Freedom of choice

Why not choose the best from among the available options?

I have heard people claim that I must want to "go back" to some earlier time, just because I dislike The State. That's silly. I think now is the best time to be alive- so far- except for the presence of the ubiquitous 21st Century Global Police State. And I refuse to let the tools of that State poop on my picnic.

Yes, there are things from the past that I'd prefer, just as there are things of today that I prefer. I'll bet there are even more things from the future that I'd like even more. We'd probably have a lot of those things available right now were it not for the interference of The State.

Many days I'd like to live as a caveman, with stone tools and animal skins. But, I like my cell phone, too. I like modern medicine- at least in theory. I like the variety of food I can choose from. So, yes, I would have no problem wearing animal skins with a cell phone hanging at my waist in a leather pouch, while squatting in a cave eating a taco salad, and drinking a Dr Pepper from a tin cup. And taking ibuprofen for a headache if I want to. A historical mishmash. (Customers used to be amused that I'd be wearing full mountainman clothing, with a cordless phone hanging on my belt beside my flintlock pistol and bowie knife, while I worked at the pet shop.) This isn't really contradictory- It's just me.

I have millions of years of humanish existence I can mine for things I like. I think it's odd to limit myself to only those things that are currently popular. Why only wear things that everyone else wears? Why use cell phones, but shun the occasional stone tool? Why would I like technology when it comes to guns, but dislike computers? For fire, I normally use a lighter, but am glad I know how to make fire with the bowdrill, or flint and steel. It's all human technology; it is my heritage and I will use what I want, when I need it.

The only reasons I can think of to be uncomfortable with modern technology are reasons that have nothing to do with the technology, but only with abuses The State imposes upon the users of certain technology.

I don't wish to be tracked or numbered, but I find the cell phone (as an example) to be incredibly liberating. No longer does a person feel the need to stay inside to be near a phone if expecting a call. You still have the choice to answer or not if a call comes in. Isn't liberty great?


  1. Most people I see appear to be enslaved to their cell phones.

  2. life is choice
    in the use of mobile phones is limited, it is reasonable things that are not fed
    My own country but the government closed down all the things that lead to
    pornography for the use of mobile phones and other electronic equipment.
    indeed a good side but the other side is human weakness that is not trained
    overcome himself.

  3. Yes, technology is nice. One thing keeping me back from a lot of it, is the annoyance of constantly having to have things plugged in to charge. The more things I have, the more daily I'm having to plug at least one thing in.

    I'm thinking about giving up on trying to instruct people regarding liberty. It just doesn't do any good. Sadly the fact is 95% people are anti-freedom when it comes to things they disagree with, maybe it's 99%.

  4. Technology will probably solve the problem of constantly needing to charge things. And I'd bet it won't be that long til it happens.

    I agree with you on giving up on educating people about liberty- in some ways. The truth is I don't do it for other people. I do it for me. The more I debate the anti-liberty people, the more I understand liberty myself. I am really only educating myself on purpose. If someone else gets educated by accident, that's a nice side effect.

  5. Vagabond, I've noticed that too. Those who are really enslaved by their cell phone (why not call it what it really is- an addiction) would be enslaved by something else if cell phones had never been invented.

    In a lot of cases, though, I've noticed that any use of cell phones (or whatever technology is being discussed, like guns) is looked down upon by people who simply dislike that particular technology.

    No one could seriously claim Captain Kirk was addicted to his communicator, nor Spock to his tricorder, nor Malcolm Reynolds to his gun- they used the tools they had when they needed to. No need to elevate the tool to a mythical status, nor to condemn it either.

    Sure, I prefer to have the right tool for the job at hand when I need it, but I've learned to improvise. If I forget my cell phone, the world doesn't end. But it might be slightly less convenient.

  6. I don't have a cell phone. Often, people gasp and say, "What will you do if you get in a car accident?" I invariably respond, "Bleed out on the steering wheel, just like they did in the good old days."

    I'd hate to guess how many people are distracted while holding onto their cell phones and get into accidents in the first place. I'll wager the number is up there. Not using their turn signals or looking over their shoulders because their left rat claws are clutching the cell phone to the left side of their skull cave is probably a contributing factor to many accidents.

  7. I had a cell phone for a while... got it for a long trip, but I gave it up because I simply can't hear what people are saying most of the time. I am 40% nerve deaf and can hear the SOUND, usually, just can't understand the words.

    I'll be happy when someone invents a phone that lets me actually understand what callers are saying. :)

    And I have no interest in "texting."

  8. I prefer texting.

    Someone I was reading said a phone call is an intrusion on the recipient, since it is always at the convenience of the caller no matter what the recipient is doing at the moment. A text message can be ignored until it is convenient to deal with.

    There is also no need for small talk or pleasantries with a text message; you can get right to the heart of the matter. Plus, you don't have to say "well, I really need to go now" several times while trying to escape from a long-winded chatter (which I can be, too). And, if needed you can illustrate your point (or question) with a picture.

    On a tangent: I have a feisty great, great aunt who at 93 uses all the latest tech comfortably (even has a Facebook page). And drives a one hundred miles round trip to teach art classes every week.

  9. Nice one Kent! I also liked this comment: "I agree with you on giving up on educating people about liberty- in some ways. The truth is I don't do it for other people. I do it for me. The more I debate the anti-liberty people, the more I understand liberty myself. I am really only educating myself on purpose. If someone else gets educated by accident, that's a nice side effect."

    I guess I'll just say "me too."

    Oh and one more thing, did you guys know you can write texts to people's phones using your email? You just put in their cell phone number and the extension used by their cell phone company. For example verizon is vtext.com, so it would be xxxxxxxxx@vtext.com (with the x's being the phone number of course). Here's a site with a bunch of extensions (http://www.emailtextmessages.com/)

  10. Debbie- Thanks!

    I send email texts fairly regularly like that.

    I also text my own email as a way to send myself reminders.