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OP/ED: Freedom? What Freedom?

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posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 05:09 PM
Freedom is something that comes natural to us all, it is a desire to control our own destiny. To be able to be who we want to be, do what we want to do and have control. In modern usage freedom is defined as "The condition of being free of restraints", a restraint being "An influence that inhibits or restrains; a limitation." It is easy to see by definition alone that we are controlled. We do not have the right to do anything that we desire - something I do not argue against. However, I do intend to show how we do not have the basic freedoms to control our own destiny anymore.

Noam Chomsky
"For those who stubbornly seek freedom, there can be no more urgent task than to come to understand the mechanisms and practices of indoctrination. These are easy to perceive in the totalitarian societies, much less so in the system of 'brainwashing under freedom' to which we are subjected and which all too often we serve as willing or unwitting instruments."

First before I can display this, I have to describe what I see as constraints which do not inhibit our person. These constraints are ones that protect the population from the actions of another an example of these regulations are things such as laws against murder, rape and assault. However, I do wish to display the difference between these and drugs [even though I do not support full legalisation]. If the result is harm upon an innocent person, be it child or bystander in the street, these are laws which are acceptable in a "free" society.

Secondly I have to define what, Social Control is. It refers to "social mechanisms" that regulate individual and group behaviour, in terms of punishment and reward. The two types of ‘social control’ are formal, such as laws as statutes, rules and regulations. It is controlled and regulated by Government and uses institutions such as the Police Force and Judiciary to enforce their view - punishing with fines and prisons. The second is informal, rules which are not openly stated, these rules are expressed through custom, norms, and mores using informal sanctions such as criticism, disapproval, guilt and shaming for a wider audience to see.

Deviance is behaviour that is a recognized violation of primarily informal control, however in the extreme cases it is also breaking accepted formal rules. Many people break norms daily because sub-cultures all have their own rules on what is acceptable and what isn't. An example of this is swearing around your grandparents, compared to your friends. For many people they would not swear in front of their grandmother, through the controls placed upon them through criticism and shaming, however when compared with their actions around their friends it is unlikely they would also be shamed for swearing.

This displays how minor deviance actually is, each human being has different accounts of acceptable behaviour and sometimes this can clash with the formal regulations. An example of this is drugs, many people view drugs as a recreational behaviour and not as anything else - however the Government has decided that things such as coc aine are not to be taken by any of these individuals. In this case the Government has decided that this man is a deviant - if he is ever found out.

And thirdly I have to display which freedoms I am talking of, these are:
  • Absence of political restraints.
  • Freedom of Speech.
  • Freedom for Religious Practice.
  • Freedom of the Press.
  • Protection from False Imprisonment.
  • Freedom of Information.
  • Freedom of education
  • Freedom of thought.
  • Economic Freedom.
  • Freedom to protect ourselves, property and family.
In modern society, especially European ones, I wish to display how we have lost these abilities.

In any democratic society, the principle boils simply down to it being the "will" of the people. If they so desire to vote for a person than that person is the one who is elected into office - or that many members of that persons party is elected into office. While political parties out outlawed, this limit’s the powers we have to vote for them. It infringes on basic rights for us to decide which cause we agree with and can force people away from the political process and to the extreme fringe. [3]

Freedom of speech is something we all need, on ATS, I find it odd that we have people wishing to limit the views that others can have. In fact, several times I have seen them call for certain views to be outlawed - this also groups in with freedom of thought. If we do not allow people to have their say, to leave it down to the Government to create formal regulations instead of the people controlling them through an informal process.

Freedom of Religion goes almost hand in hand with speech, we should be able to practice any religion and follow the codes that it sets down as long as we do not intentionally harm another human being, secondly no religion should be given status over another. [4]

Protection from false imprisonment is something I feel strongly about, working in the British Criminal Justice System, my job is based around making sure people who are innocent stay out of prison and those who are guilty are punished. However over the last few years I have seen a wave of abuse creeping up over the United Kingdom, the first was Belmarsh [5] and more recently the newer Anti-Terrorism law. For nearly 800 years their was one thing that was certain in "democratic" legal systems, that was habeas corpus. The right for a prison to be placed before a court, in a swift manor. This is all changing right before our eyes - with each passing year - along with it go one of our basic freedoms.

Freedom of Information and Education go hand in hand, there is an old saying that history should never be repeated. However, we are now seeing this happen. Our Government do not disclose information of their actions - years after they were taken. They keep hidden what our soldiers, which we employ, get involved with and they glorify our history. We no longer learn about the problems and mistakes of the passed - nor do we get the option to learn about such things. Resulting in the risk of us allowing them to happen once more.

Economic freedom is something many of us take for granted. We feel as though we can gain any job if we work hard enough, raise to the top of our profession and so on and so fourth…however this isn’t the truth. Take an example of property law in the United Kingdom. The Local Government Finance Act of, 1992 introduced something known as "Council Tax". This works off of an idea that by living in a property or owning a property you have to pay the state a certain amount of money as upkeep. If you do not pay the state, they can punish you by imprisonment or even removing you from the property [although this has yet to happen].In essence this is a tax on your right to own property. If you do not pay it the Government can over-rule you and take your property from you. One of the basic ideas of economic freedom is your right to own and this infringed directly upon it.

The freedom to protect ourselves is an issue still under fierce debate by many sectors. On one hand the complete removal of firearms from a Nation would result in less firearm death, it leaves people open to abuse from the State. If the state have nothing to fear they have no basis on which you can control them outside of the voting process - which is becoming more and more fraudulent.

Although at the present moment we are only seeing these rights be taken away from us slowly the Government is beginning to take over from society. They are beginning to create the norms, values, etc and take over informal punishment through use of the media onto people. Public shaming of drug addicts, drunks and vandals are common place and has allowed the media to create a victim industry. Through the use of this and legislation they are shaping us and in my view point they are shaping us for the removal of even more rights and we as a Society are allowing it. It might not be my generation but before the death of my children, I see the once proud Western Nation’s becoming a Police State. Something none of us should allow to happen.


[edit on 30/10/2005 by Odium]

[edit on 30-10-2005 by Nerdling]

[edit on 11/1/05 by FredT]

[edit on 11/1/05 by FredT]

posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 05:13 PM
Vote this up so i can give the author WATS

That is one of the best pieces of work ive read in ages

posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 05:46 PM
well said!

In this day and age far too many people do not understand that they are not truly free. This article needs to be published in every newspaper in the country... then hopefully more people will wake up and vote 3rd party!

Way To Go!

posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 05:52 PM
Thank you both for the reply.

Where2Hide2006, it is a shame it won't ever get National Coverage or even more than a few thousand views [if I am lucky]. It seems as though people - even on here, like to live in their own World. Which I am afraid to say isn't the real one.

posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 11:05 PM
I had a revolutionary idea that could bring the government into check if the people could get it voted on. And I know for a fact if we could get it on an official ballot somehow it would definetly pass. It would involve the creation of a local/state/national computer network.

Any new laws that become passed, would immediately be passed on to an employee who is part of the staff that maintains the network in their local area. This employee will have the duty of digitally scanning the new laws that are to be added to our books and adding them to our network. Upon the completion of the addition of this new law to the network, an alert will be displayed on hundreds, and possibly thousands of kiosks which are placed in high traffic areas such as malls, super centers, hotels, airports, libraries, gyms you name it. Citizens will then have the abilitiy study the new law, as well as browse any recent additions, or any law in the archive for that matter.

If the particular citizen does not approve of a specific law that has been passed, they would simply log in using their voter registration number and/or social security number, then file their dispute as well as the reason they chose to. Perhaps setting a limit on the time to dispute the law if you so desire can be added, such as one week or month. If a certain percentage or ratio of voters disputed the law compared to the overall voter population in the area the law will be repealed.

Obviously laws are being passed everyday in everyones communities, on top of the federal ones, that may affect our lives. We never know the content of most of these laws until someone becomes subject to it. The purpose of this device is to bring a substantially higher public awareness as well as access to the very laws which govern our lives everyday.

Now before you objectors who complain about the cost or the purpose or what fors, take a moment to answer this. If this sysytem was already in place and accessible would you use it to follow up with the current laws? If you happened to notice for example, a revision to the patriot act in which congress has authorized the authority for the FBI to search and sieze evidence in the home of a protestor who has been detained/arrested for their actions while the individual was in custody, would you not file a dispute to have this revision denied?

Or would you prefer to continue now, where laws are passed without the general knowledge of the public. And then one day you happen to be that unlucky protestor who has false evidence planted in your household while you were in jail and are sealed away for years?

With the advancement of technology and growing access to information it is the duty of the citizen to keep their government in check. To be aware of laws that will affect your life. Can you imagine the arguement the poor bastard had when he realized he was the first person to ever be arrested for DUI, because he did not have access to a TV, and just decided to go to town for a drink at the bar one night and got pulled over for driving too slow?(the previous is a hypothetical scenario)

It is our duty to make sure our tax money is used to know exactly what our elected officials are doing and what laws they are passing. The population is too great and the individuals time to little to go to the library or city hall and dig up a book which we have to manually search to find out what kind of laws are being passed. This kind of technological innovation can also make it much easier for an individual being charged for a crime to defend themselves without the need to hire a highly expensive attorney. Installing these in jail dorms would also be a good idea.


posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 11:36 PM
Nice one Odium

You have voted Odium for the Way Above Top Secret award. You have one more vote left for this month.

posted on Oct, 30 2005 @ 11:43 PM
arggh don't get me started on Freedom issues .....

we are not free.... we are not allowed to be....

Great one Odium well presented.

posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 02:44 AM
DYepes, in some aspects I do like the idea of what you are suggesting. In basics it is very much the same as what the Swiss use in their Goverment, with the ability for people to vote on laws and have them removed if the majority disagree or to vote new laws in.

However, all the laws since the 104th Session of Congress to the Present day are online, the Office of the Federal Register (OFR), National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) both keep them online for people to see if they so desire. The problem is people either, do not care or, do not understand what the laws mean. Many people look at something like the Patriot Act and don't understand what can be made of it by a good lawyer or Judge. [Good at their job.]

And if we were to employ people to explain the thousands of laws which are passed each year it would cost far too much and still be far too complex. People wouldn't desire to sit and read for several hours a day so the system would need to take that into account. People wish to have some fun with their lives and their spare time.

posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 04:17 AM
Good Op/Ed Odium.

I find it ironic that the West seems fixated on spreading "freedom" to the Middle East when we dont have it ourselves. In actual fact our government's agenda is to spread our lame brand of "freedom" over the rest of the World. The only "freedom" in this Western brand of freedom is freedom for governments to walk over their people.

[edit on 31/10/05 by subz]

posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 11:22 AM
Subz, this is why I like you - you are able to see through the whole gimic of the War on Terror.

What happens when we only have one culture left? Our own Culture...our Western, morals, values and judgements based upon them?

Is it only me that worries about this?

Many people forget what the Nazi's wanted, a "Master Race" and to me this is the same thing. Once you have one culture - a master culture - you as good as have one race. One mindset and one way of thinking and to me it isn't one I like.

The Western World is based on explotation and until we see that we will never be free.

posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 02:13 PM
Nice job Odium


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 02:30 PM

Originally posted by deluded
Nice job Odium


Thank you Deluded, what do you think will help to stop the apathy which is taking over?

posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 03:31 PM
We are not free. We are not being told the truth on the television and radio, we live under a delusion. Hollywood tells us how to vote and people laud the stars, when all they are are psychotic egomaniacs on drugs. We lost the right to bear arms when we made the NRA (National Rifle Association) look like the PLO. Half the politicians are imposters, some from England. The insiders take over corporations and bilk funds with imposter IDs. Some of these takeovers are in life insurance companies and accidents pay double when the insured never even saw the policy and now he's dead. The crooked insiders/imposters at the top cut the payout check and split it up. The Insurance Comissioner of Louisiana is serving a life sentence. All of the stars are imposters. You don't know who is filling your head with lies. You can't move to a foriegn country without the CIA or some militant patriots trying to kill you. Emigration is a lie. The concept of democracy is being used to determine who gets ostracized, like we all agreed to get rid of certain people. "Don't ya hate so-and-so?" Mostly its George Bush everyone agreed to hate. Social trends determine what people think and they don't look into the truth, they just focus on the station wagon and the 2.4 kids and what's for dinner. If you even voiced a concern in a bar or a corporate lunchroom, everyone would agree you're crazy and need to be thrown out. Everyone just shuts up, puts up and goes on living the lie. Well I for one am sick of it. If I didn't have to put a roof over my head I'd totally drop out. I'm not going to go along with any more coverups and blind obedience even if it gives me these painful palpitations I have. God help us. Half the US government believes in Satan. What kind of antisocial garbage is that? Believeing in what's wrong - namely sin - just to score brownie points in hell. And that's suposed to help you curse someone and conjure evil spirits. They're stealing lethal gas tanks and injection serum from the Dept. of Justice, nuclear waste from the energy plants, breaking down Cadillacs they stole to make pipe bombs - and these are Americas finest! Their dogs are all wanted and the crooked politicians are getting their sentences mitigated, or getting them pardoned and threatening the local police to let them get away with drug sales, car theft and prostitution for a way of life. Its disgusting.


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 03:36 PM
Even the illusion of "Freedom" has been smeared.. We're not free.. no one is.. Nothing is.. I think the most importand thing that we should all realise.. not just those living in the USA.. But the world.. is that we dont OWN this Earth... We BELONG to it

posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 04:32 PM

Originally posted by Ox
Even the illusion of "Freedom" has been smeared.. We're not free.. no one is.. Nothing is.. I think the most importand thing that we should all realise.. not just those living in the USA.. But the world.. is that we dont OWN this Earth... We BELONG to it

Or we belong to the people who own it.

I live in a Nation where two doctors can over-rule my free will to 'save my life'. I do not own my own body but the State does.


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 04:42 PM
I'm sorry to hear about you not having a choice to live or not
just kidding.. And thats what the people need to understand... Not just go along with some half wit because.. he has good hair.. or a nice suit.. or doesnt believe in abortion... We have the power here.. not them.. and WE need to start showing that we have the damn power and stand up for ourselves.. not with guns.. or bombs or who can destroy who's country.. But we need to stand up against these people that make us believe that they are on our side.. doing what is right.. when all they are doing is something that will better themselves.. Usually financially... the buggers!..

We... are the power.. we belong.. we do not own nor have the right to destroy or take..


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 04:52 PM
And I agree with you Jeff, however the problem is to put it through and get the laws in place so people can have our say. Recently I have been working with a small party in the United Kingdom, political one, although not directly involved on this issue. However, I would like to share one of the findings of our studies.

Should MPs represent
Their constituents: 6%
Themselves: 11%
The party line: 82% one that I find the most interesting, out of all the people we looked at and spoke to, 82% think a Member of Parliament should do what his party think is best and not what the people of his area think is best.

How can we ever be free while people think like that?


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 05:09 PM
Now I agree with you totally.. But people arent thinking like that.. People are being led and forced to think like that..
Who will be our voice? Ohhh lets elect some corrupt facist bastard to be our voice and lead us into a world war and have our innocents killed because of it..

There doesnt have to be politics.. There doesnt have to be an elected leader, Parliment, Senate, There CANT be one voice to speak for us.. or our country.. there must be many.. There cant be cronies in office.. they speak from the same voice.. And when I say many voices I mean.. thousands.. not 50.. or 20.. hundreds of thousands.. with their own beliefs.. not someone elses..

I being originally from Australia.. Follow what you're saying.. and I sympathise.. I truly do.. But believe me when I say.. It can happen..

No new laws need to be passed.. Just voices need to be heard.. We need to stand as a SPECIES.. not as a country.. or a race

Think of it like this..We are all the same species here... prick us do we not bleed? We all came from the same place at one time (apparently).. This is what we need to remember.. Not fight over


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 05:13 PM
It does exist already Jeff, there have been a few systems of Goverment which were ruled by the "will of the people" in fact "direct democracy" and to this day the Swiss still use such a system. However it is hard to introduce on a population without understanding.

Surely, the only way to change things in places like the United Kingdom is to do it from the top-down. However, how do we get someone who wishes to give power back to the people into such a position when the media would be so against them?

It's an awkward issue, one that turns into a cycle. We know what we want, how we want it and the vast majority of people [I believe] would want to use it. But we can never put it through while Big Business is against us.


posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 05:17 PM
And thats the problem right there.. "Big Business" Do you know what it costs just to run for a city council seat? About $10,000 U.S. (In the city I live in anyway)

Money is power.. Greed is everything.. Are there ways to get people like that out of office? Sure there is.. It's happening right now.. but it takes time.. There's other ways.. but they can be costly if your caught..


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