reply to post by Skyfloating
We have covered significant ground in this debate highlighting the need for cognitive infiltration of social networking sites.
I would like to thank my opponent Skyfloating for his passionate advocacy of the opposing side of the issue.
Passion is never a substitute for common sense and pragmatism, and I believe most people expect their government to employ common sense and to be
pragmatic. Active and rigorous monitoring of social networking sites to ensure they don’t become a free broadcasting network for foreign enemies of
the state, domestic subversives, the criminally minded, and those who would deliberately misconstrue important national events simply for profit is
While I have no doubt my opponent is well intentioned, his world in this regard is incredibly naïve and dismissive of a good many real, pertinent and
My opponent questions if the government should render a determination as to the veracity of information being disseminated over the Internet.
Yet in matters of rendering judgments on the law, and criminality, protection and overall security, and official news, the people of this great nation
do turn to and expect the Government to fulfill those roles. The Government is doing precisely what it is designed and intended and expected to do, by
the people, who elect its representatives.
My says that the Government and people like myself who see a reasonable need for cognitive infiltration of social networking sites believe the people
of this nation are too diminished in their capacity to think intelligently and make good decisions for themselves.
Yet every year billions of dollars of fraud occur on the Internet where trusting and well intentioned Americans are scammed of their money and
property by slick criminals who tailor skillfully wrought sales pitches and promises that succeed in bilking citizens of all educational, social and
Every year thousands of children go missing after being lured away from their homes by predators on the Internet.
Every year millions of people become victims of identity theft after being conned out of their vital personal information by Internet con artists.
My opponent would have you think these are all ‘dumb’. Yet the truth is that they are victims.
As I have mentioned as the Internet Evolves so do it’s threats, and so does the governments response to those threats.
So if people can be conned out of their money, their property, their safety, their identity and in some cases even their virginity all through the
Internet how could one believe that they can’t fall prey to other dangers, especially those suffering from crippled epistemology.
My opponent believes most of us recognize extremists when we see them. Over two dozen airport ticket and security agents on September 11, 2001
didn’t when nineteen radical Islamist extremists managed to arouse no suspicion to board 4 flights and within hours manage to kill thousands of
Americans, cause billions of dollars in property damage, and rock the nation to its core.
What is the Internet? My opponent imagines it was designed to shop and chat and email and social network.
The Department of Defense created the Internet in the early 1970’s as an alternative communication network to utilize in the event that nuclear
attack upon the nation destroyed traditional telephone switching stations, and radio communications towers.
The Internet would cut messages into dozens of parcels called packets and send them out electronically where they could bounce back and forth looking
for intact telephone lines and eventually find a path to the recipient’s destination and reassemble themselves there, so that vital commands could
still be relayed during a nuclear war.
In the early 1980’s a government employee tired of waiting on the departments mail man to deliver interdepartmental memos struck upon the idea of
sending a type written message to the computer terminal of the co-employee he wanted to send a message too and sent the world’s first email.
In the 1980’s a Swedish entrepreneur developed the concept of the World Wide Web, that would assign each computer server attached to a world wide
network its own unique address that could be searched out through an electronic command that would detect specific information on a computer acting as
a server so it could be accessed remotely.
It would still take years to catch on, and years before AOL, MindSpring and other early Internet Service Providers would make this an affordable
reality for everyone. Years more before fledgling Internet companies like Amazon.com would vie with brick and mortar stores to sell merchandize, years
until online banking was achieved, years before the major news networks had a presence on the Internet, and years before the first Social Networking
Sites sprang into existence.
The Internet is constantly evolving and changing.
My opponent believes that Social Networking Sites alone are capable of policing themselves, but the truth is that these are commercial enterprises
many of whom get paid by advertisers based on the number of page views their social network site achieves and maintains. Banning members and deleting
content that brings visitors are things that are not always in their own business interests to do. Further they are not always trained or capable of
looking for and spotting the evolving threats that exist within their domains, and are at times challenged by civil codes that open them to liability
in the form of fines and economic penalties and lawsuits that limit their remedies in some cases.
Government protects, that’s its job, Social Networking Sites provide venues for like minded people to share ideas, and information.
What we discovered on September 11th, 2001 is that it’s not always in the people’s best interest to leave matters of security up to private
My opponent claims that the presence of just a few bad apples as he describes these terrorists, propagandists, extremists, criminals and charlatans
doesn’t warrant the intrusion.
It only took a few people to hijack four planes, kill over 6,000 Americans, destroy the \World Trade Center and attack the Pentagon destroying nearly
an entire wing.
Yet Americans expect the government to police and monitor and make the airports secure even though it is just a few people who comprise the bulk of
“The most dangerous enemy is a stupid friend”.
Those suffering from crippled epistemology not need be a ‘bad apple’ to find them selves manipulated by those who are. Yet their actions once so
deceived and manipulated can cause every bit as much damage as those provocateurs that start out with malicious intent.
When the telephone was invented it was not left just up to the people. The telephone companies have always been regulated by the government, and prior
to computerized switchboards, almost every operator switching center of any notable size had at least one federal or local law enforcement agent in
the switching room alongside the operators.
My opponent does not seem to understand the technology of bots that can glean through thousands of posts and emails an hour searching out key words
that then highlight a possible need for cognitive intervention after further review.
My opponent seems to think what for the most part is an automated and computerized effort is an impossibly tedious waste of personnel hours that would
yield little result.
Earlier in the thread I displayed how during World War II when the Government needed to communicate important information to the people, it would do
so in the movie theatres through official news reels. It made perfect sense to do this as most people congregated in the movie theatres to be
entertained on a regular basis.
Today’s social networking sites are yesteryears movie theatres, they are a place where citizens congregate in large numbers, and it is more
efficient, timely and cost effective to broadcast through such mediums and to such audiences.
My opponent doesn’t seem to realize that it only takes one Timothy McVeigh and a couple of associates to mount an attack on this nation that would
kill Americans. Only one or two others are needed and who easier to recruit than those suffering from crippled epistemology?
My opponent doesn’t seem to believe the people of this nation are worth that extra effort to protect, that if a few hundred die here, or a few
thousand die there at the hands of a few bad apples, well that’s just the world we live in.
What my opponent is thinking, I surely wonder.
I would like to thank MemoryShock for providing us this critical issue for debate, and his gracious generosity and professionalism in conducting this
I would like to thank my opponent Skyfloating for his kind challenge to debate him, in my first ever official ATS debate.
In closing I urge every intelligent and security conscious American to consider and weigh both the pros and cons of this issue, as it is in my humble
opinion one of the most important challenges facing our nation in the 21st Century.
Thank you one, and thank you all.