Science’s Pirate Queen Reply

If you remember: first it was music when P2P file sharing smashed the RIAA/music industry, then torrent sites like The Pirate Bay, KAT, and Limetorrents smashed the MPAA/movie industry. I think Google killed the book publishing industry on accident, and now Alexandra Elbakyan’s Sci-Hub is drilling the academic publishing industry, on purpose. I found this article to be exhausting and almost impossible to read though. It mainly focuses on the money and legal matters and I couldn’t find any mention about how more students, scientists, small startups, and independent researchers having free access to the research papers in their particular fields has been a great thing for progress in science generally. I think it would be impossible to get a head-count on the number of important connections, discoveries, or even major break throughs that have been made as a result of the removal of the barrier to entry and the ability to read a scientific paper without having to pay 30 bucks-plus a piece. If you ask me, Elbakyan may be one of the most important women of the early century.
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By Ian Graber-Stiehl

Alexandra Elbakyan is plundering the academic publishing establishmen

In cramped quarters at Russia’s Higher School of Economics, shared by four students and a cat, sat a server with 13 hard drives. The server hosted Sci-Hub, a website with over 64 million academic papers available for free to anybody in the world. It was the reason that, one day in June 2015, Alexandra Elbakyan, the student and programmer with a futurist streak and a love for neuroscience blogs, opened her email to a message from the world’s largest publisher: “YOU HAVE BEEN SUED.”

It wasn’t long before an administrator at Library Genesis, another pirate repository named in the lawsuit, emailed her about the announcement. “I remember when the administrator at LibGen sent me this news and said something like ‘Well, that’s… that’s a real problem.’ There’s no literal translation,” Elbakyan tells me in Russian. “It’s basically ‘That’s an ass.’ But it doesn’t translate perfectly into English. It’s more like ‘That’s fucked up. We’re fucked.’”

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Return of the city-state Reply

By Jamie Bartlett

If you’d been born 1,500 years ago in southern Europe, you’d have been convinced that the Roman empire would last forever. It had, after all, been around for 1,000 years. And yet, following a period of economic and military decline, it fell apart. By 476 CE it was gone. To the people living under the mighty empire, these events must have been unthinkable. Just as they must have been for those living through the collapse of the Pharaoh’s rule or Christendom or the Ancien Régime.

We are just as deluded that our model of living in ‘countries’ is inevitable and eternal. Yes, there are dictatorships and democracies, but the whole world is made up of nation-states. This means a blend of ‘nation’ (people with common attributes and characteristics) and ‘state’ (an organised political system with sovereignty over a defined space, with borders agreed by other nation-states). Try to imagine a world without countries – you can’t. Our sense of who we are, our loyalties, our rights and obligations, are bound up in them.

Which is all rather odd, since they’re not really that old. Until the mid-19th century, most of the world was a sprawl of empires, unclaimed land, city-states and principalities, which travellers crossed without checks or passports. As industrialisation made societies more complex, large centralised bureaucracies grew up to manage them. Those governments best able to unify their regions, store records, and coordinate action (especially war) grew more powerful vis-à-vis their neighbours. Revolutions – especially in the United States (1776) and France (1789) – helped to create the idea of a commonly defined ‘national interest’, while improved communications unified language, culture and identity. Imperialistic expansion spread the nation-state model worldwide, and by the middle of the 20th century it was the only game in town. There are now 193 nation-states ruling the world.

But the nation-state with its borders, centralised governments, common people and sovereign authority is increasingly out of step with the world. And as Karl Marx observed, if you change the dominant mode of production that underpins a society, the social and political structure will change too.

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What Happens After a Computer Science Data Breach? Reply

With tens of millions of websites being hacked every year, it’s important that entrepreneurs in all areas of business remain vigilant against attack. However, those working in the computer science industry (such as software programmers and IT consultants) may work with particularly sensitive data, which in the wrong hands could be catastrophic for their business.

It was recently announced that computer scientists have successfully created a tool designed to detect when a website is being hacked. Given the rate of data breaches and cyber attacks in our digital culture, these findings could prove invaluable to companies all over the world. But in the realms of computer science, while hacking is still so rife, what actually happens after a data breach?

The Golden Hour

According to Computer Weekly, the first hour after a data breach is the most important to get right. Subsequent investigation into the breach will depend on a company’s actions during this time, which is why it’s so important to have an emergency procedure in place. Much like in medical traumas, you have the best chance of saving your data if you act instantly, so make sure you are trained and prepared for such an event.

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Are Startup Societies the Way Forward? Reply

An interesting conference on startup societies is coming up next month at Georgetown University. Get the details here. Startup societies may be a way to develop the infrastructure that is needed for a broader pan-secessionist action against central governments and the global corporatocracy. Anarchist and other radical organizations develop into intentional communities, which then develop into startup societies, which then develop into regional secession movements, with infrastructure, political organizations, media, militias, etc. of their own.

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Startup Societies Foundation does not endorse any ideology or ideal society. We believe that there must be a multiplicity of options to test, from private cities and SEZs to collectivized communes. Their success depends on empirical evidence. In order to apply the scientific method to societies, we must have a large sample size

What is a startup society? Here are some examples.

 

The 21st Century is Becoming the 19th Century: Repeating Tragedy as a Farce 2

History repeatsfirst as tragedy, then as farce” … -Karl Marx, The 18th Brumaire of Louis Napoleon

By Keith Preston

The present era of globalization in the early 21st century is very similar to the era of industrialization in the early 19th century, in the sense of both the way that it is transforming the world, as well as the conflicts that it is generating.

The primary political conflict in the early to middle 19th century was the battle between the rising bourgeoisie and the Ancient Regime. The present day equivalent of that conflict is the emerging conflict between the “national bourgeoisie” (represented by, for example, the declining WASP elite in the United States), who are the contemporary equivalent of the throne and altar traditionalists of earlier times. This declining ruling class sector is pitted against the globalist techno-oligarchs, financiers, and information/managerial class professionals that comprise the New Elites (the present equivalent of the 19th century bourgeoisie). The populist-nationalist movements of the West who serve as the ground level constituency for the national bourgeoisie are comparable to the 19th century European peasants and petite bourgeoisie who supported the royalists against the rise of the classical bourgeoisie (and whose opposition to the global economy is somewhat comparable to the Luddites who opposed the advent of industrialization). For instance, to understand the presidency of Donald Trump, and the rise of the Trumpians, one needs only to read Marx’s The 18th Brumaire of Louis Napoleon, which describes how “how the class struggle..created circumstances and relationships that made it possible for a grotesque mediocrity to play a hero’s part.

Louis Napoleon Bonaparte

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Donald Trump

Image result for trump

The rise of the bourgeoisie in the 19th century, the subsequent institutionalization of the bourgeoisie as the new ruling class (replacing the monarchs, aristocrats, and clerics), the parallel growth of industrial capitalism, and the related class polarization, generated the rise of opposition to the bourgeoisie from the Left. This opposition took the form of the socialist, communist, anarchist, and labor movements of the 19th and early 20th century.

More…

National-Anarchist Movement Conference 2017: A Summary Reply

Image result for national anarchist movement

By Keith Preston

Special thanks to Peter Topfer, Adam Ormes, Thom Forester, and Sean Jobst for their assistance in the writing of this summary.

On June 17 and 18, the first ever conference of the National-Anarchist Movement (N-AM) took place in Madrid. The process of arranging this conference was certainly not without its difficulties, and the organizers deserve much praise for their diligence in this regard. Originally, the conference was supposed to be hosted by the Madrid section of N-AM, who dropped out of the project shortly (and out of N-AM altogether) before the conference took place. This led to the irony of a conference being held in Spain where no actual Spanish people were among the attendees. Because National-Anarchists are widely despised by leftists who mistakenly regard N-A as a “fascist” tendency, security was a paramount concern.

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Forget far-right populism – crypto-anarchists are the new masters Reply

By Jamie Bartlett

The Guardian

hose who mistakenly thought 2016 was an anomaly, a series of unprecedented events, should have few remaining doubts. Marine Le Pen may have stuttered but still picked up almost 11 million votes. Her opponent, the “normal” candidate, was leader of a party only one year old. The ongoing terror attacks, fake news panic, Trump’s tweets and James Comey: last year never really ended, it just carried straight on into this one.

After decades of exaggerated prediction, the internet is finally transforming politics, but not in the way the digital prophets expected. The 90s, you may recall, were awash with optimism about our online future: limitless information and total connection would make us more informed, less bigoted and kinder citizens. But the internet is an overwhelming mess of competing facts, claims, blogs, data, propaganda, misinformation, investigative journalism, charts, different charts, commentary and reportage. It’s not the slow and careful politicians who have thrived in this busy environment, it’s the people with the shareable cut-through messages. Donald Trump might very well be the first truly social-media politician: his emotion-filled, simplistic blasts are perfect for the medium.

As a result, society is currently gripped by a curious consensus: that the internet has conspired with rightwing populists to sew up the future of politics. Noting the emergence of populist strongmen and demagogues, who seem to be digital wizards like recovering Twitter addict Trump, and violent opponents who seem only to bolster their support, many are comparing – with a certain grim fascination – our current turbulence with the 1930s. That is a very short-term view of things. The supremacy of the populist right is not the inevitable future. The rise of the right is better seen as an early skirmish in a much longer, and far more significant, technology-led restructuring of our politics and society. Digital technology has helped the populist right for now, but it will soon swallow them up, along with many other political movements unable or unwilling to see how the world is changing.

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Wikileaks Reveals Vault 7: CIA Hacking Tool Targeting Smart Phones, SmartTVs, Windows, iOS and Linux devices Reply

Wikileaks

Today, Tuesday 7 March 2017, WikiLeaks begins its new series of leaks on
the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. Code-named “Vault 7” by WikiLeaks,
it is the largest ever publication of confidential documents on the agency.

The first full part of the series, “Year Zero”, comprises 8,761 documents
and files from an isolated, high-security network situated inside the CIA’s
Center for Cyber Intelligence in Langley,
Virgina. It follows an introductory disclosure last month of

CIA targeting French political parties and candidates in the lead up to the
2012 presidential election
.

Recently, the CIA lost control of the majority of its hacking arsenal
including malware, viruses, trojans, weaponized “zero day” exploits,
malware remote control systems and associated documentation. This
extraordinary collection, which amounts to more than several hundred
million lines of code, gives its possessor the entire hacking capacity
of the CIA. The archive appears to have been circulated among former
U.S. government hackers and contractors in an unauthorized manner,
one of whom has provided WikiLeaks with portions of the archive.

More…

Climate change: Fact or fiction? 1

Some scientists say the earth’s climate changes constantly and naturally, but the vast majority of them believe the current rise in global temperature is man-made, and could be catastrophic for the planet. But is all this but a case of extreme ‘climate alarmism’? Climate change sceptic Richard Lindzen is challenged on his view that concern about global warming is alarmist nonsense.

CrossTalk Debate on Climate Change Reply

The media coverage of Superstorm Sandy was 24/7. However, there was little mention of climate change. Why is this? And why didn’t Obama or Romney mention climate change at all in the three TV debates despite a summer of record temperatures, historic drought and wildfires in the US? Why are so many people in the US in denial of this dire situation? And is the thermometer going up or down? CrossTalking with Patrick Michaels, Denis Rancourt and Richard Milne.

Climate Change: What Do Scientists Say? Reply

Climate change is an urgent topic of discussion among politicians, journalists and celebrities…but what do scientists say about climate change? Does the data validate those who say humans are causing the earth to catastrophically warm? Richard Lindzen, an MIT atmospheric physicist and one of the world’s leading climatologists, summarizes the science behind climate change.

Climate Change: What Does Science Really Say? Reply

Tom Woods interviews a climate change dissident. Listen here.

To call any aspect of the climate change orthodoxy into question is to risk being condemned as “anti-science.” But are the arguments and computer models of the so-called mainstream really so rock solid?

About the Guest

Chip Knappenberger is assistant director of the Center for the Study of Science at the Cato Institute. He has over 20 years of experience in climate research and public outreach, and has published numerous papers in the major atmospheric science journals on global warming, hurricanes, precipitation changes, weather and mortality, and Greenland ice melt, among many other areas.

Praise of Folly Podcast Episode #3: Scientism Part 2 Reply

In this podcast we will discuss the notion of scientism or the belief in salvation through science. We will look at the historical manifestations of this cult and the historic consequences of it. We will also discuss the philosophical bankruptcy of scientism as well.

Chapter 1 (0:0042:34): Philosophical Underpinnings of Scientism

Chapter 2 (42:3454:25) Alternative mindsets to Technical Totalitarianism

Norbet Weiner

http://www.informationphilosopher.com…

Eliminitivism Without Truth in three parts:

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2013/…

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2013/…

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2013/…

Look Who’s Talking
https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inb…

Praise of Folly Podcast Episode #2: Scientism Part 1 Reply

In this podcast we will discuss the notion of scientism or the belief in salvation through science. We will look at the historical manifestations of this cult and the historic consequences of it. We will also discuss the philosophical bankruptcy of scientism as well.

Chapter 1 (00:0015:26) What is Scientism?

Chapter 2 (15:261:00:25) Historical and Moral Problems of Scientism

Why the Future Doesn’t Need Us: http://www.wired.com/2000/04/joy-2/

Unabomber Manifesto: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/…

The Advancement of Learning: http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/bac…

On the Origin of Everything: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/25/boo…

Ray Kurzweil Neil deGrasse Tyson Predictions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PiRdN…

Tim Wise vs. Jared Taylor: The Merits of Racial Diversity Reply

This is an interesting debate between leftist anti-racist Tim Wise and race-realist/white nationalist Jared Taylor. This discussion covers most of the standard issues and arguments involved in these kinds of debates.

I would suggest that these questions are largely irrelevant to the question of anarchist political theory generally, or the pan-anarchist, pan-secessionist, and pan-decentralist approach to anarchist that is advanced by ATS. Regardless of what one’s views on the science or sociology of race actually are, there is nothing in anarchist political theory that would justify racial oppression irrespective of claims of IQ or other differences among racial and ethnic groups, nor is there anything in anarchist political theory that would justify abrogating liberal Enlightenment principles in the name of anti-racist ideologies.

An analogy might be made to religion. Whatever one’s theological views, there is nothing in anarchist political theory that would legitimize a political theocracy in the vein of Saudi Arabia, nor is there anything that would justify a Jacobin-like or Communist-like persecution of religion.

Former NSA Tech Director says “Fire everyone in DC!” Reply

Truth Axis

Former National Security Agency (NSA) Technical Leader and whistle blower Bill Binney has stated that the biggest threat to U.S. citizens is their own government. In a Reddit.com Ask Me Anything the long time NSA critic answered questions from the reddit community, covering topics related to NSA mass surveillance and his own thoughts on privacy. When asked about the biggest threat to US citizens and what can be done, he responded:

The biggest threat to U.S. citizens is the U.S. government.
Fire everyone in DC!

Binney also responded to questions about the surveillance and wiretapping system he developed for the NSA, ThinThread, which was designed to automatically detect terror threats while protecting the privacy of US citizens. Binney left the NSA in the wake of 9/11 shortly after ThinThread was discontinued in favor of the Trailblazer Project, which did not have the same privacy safeguards in place and would eventually be shut down after going over budget and costing taxpayers billions of dollars. Of the switch from ThinThread Binney said, “ThinThread was killed in 2001 and so is not producing any threat assessments now…. All the programs currently in use by NSA have failed to produce results on anything, but are really good at bulk collection.” He went on to advocate for infiltration of national intelligence agencies and associated contractors by hactivists and other concerned citizen tech workers:

Im all for infiltration! And when you do that you bring with it your integrity and character.

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Cody Wilson – 3D Printed Guns, PC Hacktivism & Cultural Terrorism Reply

An great interview of Cody Wilson by Lana Lokteff.

Radio 3Fourteen. Listen here.

Cody Rutledge Wilson, a student of law, political philosophy, and social theory, is a USA crypto and free-market anarchist. He is best known as a founder/director of Defense Distributed, a non-profit organization that develops and publishes open source gun designs, so-called “Wiki Weapons,” suitable for 3D printing. USA Carry named Wilson one of America’s “30 Influential Pro-Gun Rights Advocates,” and Wired Magazine’s “Danger Room” has named him one of “The 15 Most Dangerous People in the World.”

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…And Then They Came for the Tech Workers Reply

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From RightOn: Labour-market laughs and lamentations mit Ann Sterzinger.


Y’all in Europe might find it a challenge to accommodate all of your new friends right now, but there’s hope: on this side of the pond, the native-born American worker just scored a massive coup, I tell you what.

A couple of weeks ago, there was a bit of a hullaballoo when SunTrust Banks in Atlanta decided to take advantage of our government’s generous H-1B special occupational visa program. The H-1B visa is a great boon to the American economy, allowing companies to replace their spoiled, entitled, costly native-born skilled labor force with cheaper, more compliant computer programmers, IT assistants, and scientists from countries like India.

It’s not that Indian people are innately more charitable toward their great and benevolent employers than Americans, mind you; but people who are in the country on an H-1B visa can’t change jobs without risking deportation, so they have to shut up and take what they’re given. The ideal employee!

But that wasn’t what made the news; such abuses of the H-1B are becoming commonplace. Just as humdrum was the way SunTrust humiliated the American employees they were firing by making them train their own replacements.

But then SunTrust pushed their luck a bit too far.

Showcasing both their lack of esteem for the American employees’ years of service and their lack of confidence in their cheap new workers’ ability to hit the ground running, SunTrust stuck a “continuing cooperation” clause in the severance agreement.

If they wanted severance pay, the rejected workers had to agree to donate their own time to step in and provide emergency help if something went wrong—for NO ADDITIONAL PAY.

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The Coming Golden Age of Anarchism Reply

It is not unreasonable to suggest that the decades ahead will witness the unfolding of a golden age of anarchism. What is the evidence for this?

-The most powerful state in the world, the United States, the mother country of the empire, is slowly losing its internal legitimacy and serious political discontent is beginning to rise.

-Antiwar sentiment in the United States is at an all time high. War fever could rise again in the event of a war with ISIS or Iran, an intervention in Syria, or a confrontation with Russia. But none of these scenarios would turn out well for the United States in the long run. Instead, the state would continue to lose its legitimacy and antiwar and anti-imperialist feeling would come back on an even stronger level.

-Class divisions are the widest they have been in a century in the United States. This all but guarantees the re-emergence of class-based politics at some point in the future. Proponents of alternative forms of decentralist economics will then begin to find a ripe audience for their ideas.

-Public opinion is slowly turning against the police state, prison-industrial complex, and the war on drugs. Sentiment of this kind will likely begin to grow exponentially in the future. It is likely that resistance to domestic American fascism will be the civil rights movement of the 21st century.

-One in four Americans are now sympathetic to secession by their region or community, and these sympathies will probably increase as the system begins to deteriorate.

-One in four American adults now has a criminal record due to overcriminalization. This can only have the effect of undermining respect for the state and its legal decrees.

-The idea of the state as the savior of humanity is an idea that is coming under increasing disrepute. The fiscal debts alone of modern welfare states likely guarantee their ultimate demise.

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The Road to Turkdom Reply

By John Robb

Global Guerrillas

It should be clear to everyone that the economic and political system that replaced feudal agriculture is starting to fall apart.

It’s also pretty clear we need a new system, one that can operate at a global scale and fully embrace the potential of new technologies without turning us all into slaves (or killing us).

What does that system look like?  Obviously, it’s very hard to see what is going to replace industrial capitalism and the nation-state while we are still inside of the system.

Despite that, it’s possible to get a sense of where it is going by looking at where technology is taking us.  I recently did some scifi writing on a short book I’m writing and this is some thinking that came out of it.

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The Cat is Out of the Bag Reply

By Keith Preston

For an opposing perspective, see this article by Joseph Nye. For an article that makes comparable arguments, see this piece in Foreign Policy by Gideon Rachman.

When the future history of the former United States of America is written, the pivotal turning point that likely marked the downfall of the USA will be the events of September 11, 2001.

The United States emerged from World War Two as the most powerful nation-state in the world, rivaled only by the second-rate Soviet Union. American hegemony and dominance spread throughout the world as Western Europe became protectorates of the USA, and the colonies of the former European colonial empires in Asia, Africa, and Latin America became U.S. client states. However the postwar era and the late 20th century were also a time of anti-colonial insurgency, leading the U.S. to get bogged down in the anti-colonial war in Indochina and eventually experience defeat. This had the effect of de-legitimizing U.S. militarism to a great degree. More…