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The People’s Republic of Zuckerstan | John Summers | The Baffler
"Taking a stand for Swartz would have dragged MIT down from its rising position in the Innovation Economy’s fable of classless utopia. Advocating leniency for this particular rule-breaking entrepreneur would have mired the school in the murky world of conflicting interests. How much safer to do nothing.

What does the Innovation Economy require of MIT? To be a global pacesetter in entrepreneurship? Check. A local real-estate kingpin? Check. An institution that’s prepared to discuss what philanthropy is really for, how cultural power masquerades as “economic development,” or why Aaron Swartz was prosecuted? No, not really."
business  technology  innovation  entrepreneurs  MIT  Harvard  housing  culture  exclusion  marketisation  CambridgeMA  SwartzAaron  power  economics  politics  basicIncome 
march 2014 by petej
The Banality of Systemic Evil - NYTimes.com
"if there are psychological motivations for whistleblowing, leaking and hacktivism, there are likewise psychological motivations for closing ranks with the power structure within a system — in this case a system in which corporate media plays an important role. Similarly it is possible that the system itself is sick, even though the actors within the organization are behaving in accord with organizational etiquette and respecting the internal bonds of trust.

Just as Hannah Arendt saw that the combined action of loyal managers can give rise to unspeakable systemic evil, so too generation W has seen that complicity within the surveillance state can give rise to evil as well — not the horrific evil that Eichmann’s bureaucratic efficiency brought us, but still an Orwellian future that must be avoided at all costs."
morality  ethics  whistleblowing  leaks  wikileaks  SnowdenEdward  ManningBradley  ManningChelsea  SwartzAaron  ArendtHannah  business  government  secrecy  surveillance  democracy  civilLiberties  HammondJeremy 
september 2013 by petej

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