[pp.int.general] Pirate Party MEP Fails to Deliver True Copyright Reform | TorrentFreak

carlo von lynX lynX at pirate.my.buttharp.org
Tue Feb 10 18:50:47 CET 2015

Alright. Making you angry is certainly not going to get us both
more enlightened. So either I stop the conversation or I start
digging deeper, asking questions and being more clear on my rationales.
I start from your previous mail because I presume I hurriedly removed
relevant parts.

On Mon, Feb 09, 2015 at 08:15:45AM -0700, Ray Jenson wrote:
> Apologies for the length of my posts. I know people hate reading the long
> ones. But I'm trying to be clear.

My reply will be double as boring.  ;)

> As I said, the issue is one of building, rather than destroying. We see it
> as unconscious; within the political game, it's more of a gambit, with the
> hope that one's adversary doesn't see it as such.

So you see a need to separate people who are trying to do good ("building")
versus those you are trying to do good for themselves which is more likely
to lead to "destroying." I have never encountered such a clean separation,
most people are somewhere in-between and frequently not aware of what side
effects the good they aim to do can have.

> When we promote the values of the party through supportive statements, all
> of our politicians (from MEPs all the way down to local government) get
> reminded of why they're in office, and it reinforces them against attack.

Hereby you describe a style of collaboration between a political party
and its elected representatives that has been in use for over a century
by all parties. Not sure if it actually works, but it surely has been
proven to not be sufficient.

> When we use criticisms from others in a way which is constructive to our
> own, the end result is that the stronger they attack, the more they fall.

This statement is very generalized. I don't know if there's any scenario
where this actually works out, but I can imagine scenarios where this is
likely to cause more damage and prove false. Either with the attacker
coming out strong - or, more likely, with both sides looking like stupid
children having a fight. I can't remember any instance of criticism via
public media, coming from party members going against other party members,
where the end result hasn't been public image damage.

Am I misunderstanding you?

> The reverse is true for us as well. The harsher our statements, the more we
> erode our own support. We should be in favor of the right, and opposed to
> the wrong, certainly; but we should support right people while we oppose
> wrong actions.

I don't get this. The essence of a political party is for people to come
together and produce a way to distinguish right from wrong, and the debate
is made of thousands of personal opinions that - hopefully and ideally -
can be convinced by real life facts towards actual things being right or
wrong, rather than belly feeling populist choices. You sound like you are
expecting the result of a very difficiult and tedious procedure to be a
prerequisite of our actions?

> This is something in psychology that I have learned creates feelings of
> support because it builds people into forces for good, and separates the
> people from the evil that they are occasionally forced to do in order to
> get the support of others. The general perception increases that these are
> the "good guys" and it becomes harder to criticize us. But we have to
> acknowledge the evil, even if we dissociate it from the people. Here's an
> example:
> "I think Amelia wrote a great article, even if heated. On the other hand,
> the criticisms against Julia were a little overstated, so I'm not certain
> if she was angry at the MEP or if she simply didn't see that she was being
> critical, or she's pissed off at the apparent disregard for the party's
> values. In either case, the article raised several excellent points that I
> hope Ms. Reda will consider and respond to."
> This is contrasted by something like:
> "I think Julia Reda is a bitch and that she ought to listen to Amelia. What
> a fucking cunt. If all our MEPs were like her, we'd be exactly like those
> stupid assholes in the MAFIAA. I hope she rots in hell. At the very least,
> she ought to respond to Amelia's well-written article. But even if that's
> true, Amelia shouldn't have been so harshly critical. She's being an
> asshole."
> And the truth is, both of these say basically the same things in different
> ways. Consider the emotional impact. When we're pushing for impact all the
> time, the resistance increases. When they aren't expecting it, it has a
> devastating effect. You can't keep the pressure on. You have to give things
> time to recover and give them a break. So when they pile all of the
> furniture against the door in anticipation of your onslaught, and all you
> give them is a small firecracker, they look silly.
> That's how we win this. We make them overreact. In the words of Sun Tzu:
> "Anger their general, and win the war."

I don't see how this whole thing applies to anything. Whatever the reactions
to Amelia's publications, as long as they stay within the murmur of party
debate platforms they don't cause public harm. In any case the tone of your
second example is such that I would recommend immediate intervention for
the inacceptable way of insulting people, but it has nothing to do with
what we were talking about in this thread in the first place.

On Mon, Feb 9, 2015 at 7:44 AM, Thomas Blechschmidt wrote:
> Very good point, Ray. I assist. We don’t need anybody blaming others for
> something he/she assumes to be wrong, erratic, unconscious.

What I said. We have had, once again, after years of similar mistakes
especialy in German media, a publication from party member A blaming 
party member B publicly of something he/she assumes to be wrong, 
erratic, unconscious. I am asking for this pattern to be stopped.

On Montag, 9. Februar 2015 15:18 Ray Jeson wrote:
> One of the primary issues in this entire fucked up ball of censorship is
> not simply whether or not censorship is directly happening, it's also a
> matter of understanding that self-censorship is still censorship.

Of course, like us in this mailing list writing in clear text for all
the surveillance agencies to see. But self-censorship also happens when
some participants in a debate use unfair means of promoting their points
of view, making themselves be heard louder than others. It demotivates
me from participating in such a debate if I know my point of view will
not be regarded anyhow. So allowing for inequality to happen within the
Pirate movement will make the meek and rational people turn quiet. Or
at least that I believe has happened to a large extent.

> That being said, there's a big difference between trying to establish
> regulations that ease the current grip on the free flow of information and
> those which further tighten the stranglehold that the MAFIAA has over the
> people. In the political game, the end game is more important than the
> intervening plays.

Are you talking about the copyright industry exercising censorship?
So you are talking about the actual content of Amelia's article while
I was talking of the article being a problem in its form of publication?
Then we are (un)happily talking of different things.

I don't see much censorship happening: The Internet is full of everybody
saying everything. The censorship isn't happening directly - it's in the
way some things make the news and the rest is lost in irrelevance.
Political control does not need censorship if it can exercise control
over priorities. Using the media to speak louder could be an attempt to
set the priorities.

> And it is a game. It's a game with the stakes of life and death over
> freedom of expression.

Huh? I would assume rather that freedom of expression has never been
so strong in the history of humanity, yet it does not translate into
political consequences.

> They want to be able to say I can't type a word that
> they own, unless I pay them tribute. And they want to create a world in
> which they hold all the ropes of slavery over everyone else. This
> antiquated view was great when slavery was all the rage, back in the early
> days of the Industrial Revolution. But we've grown past that now. At least,
> some of us have.

Uh okay. Well I guess some players will use whatever tools they are
given to exercise power. If they can direct the activities of the
copyright industries, they will find ways to make use of that. There
are so many vectors by which they can undermine democracy - inhibiting
certain expressions by copyright sounds to me like one of the most
harmless ones. As long as we don't ensure secrecy of correspondence and
freedom of assembly over the Internet, freedom of expression will hardly 
ever lead to a successful political forming of opposition. It is far too
easy to intervene during the period of growth. Just make sure new upcoming
political movements make the same stupid mistakes over and over gain.

> This is very much an issue of Industrial Age thinking versus Information
> Age thinking. We can't simply point the finger of blame at one MEP for
> failure, because that's the old Industrial way of thinking. Instead, we
> have to promote the idea that it's the failure of others (MEPs, citizenry,
> etc., based on whatever will be most effective) to support this MEP in her
> crusade and generate support.
> The Industrial way is one of taking from others. It's the medieval form of
> piracy, which results in slavery, death, and robbery. This isn't what we're
> about.
> The Information Age is one of giving to others. It's the modern form of
> piracy, which results in openness, livelihood and generosity. This is
> precisely what we're about, and always have been.

So here we have this dangerous simplification that doesn't fit reality
and can therefore lead to dramatic failure. I think I mentioned before
in this thread that this type of ideology has been promoted by the
German Green party following a general vibe from the '68 generation.
The wording was partially different, but the idea was the same. It was
expected that one could do politics differently by exhibiting certain
virtues. In fact something similar is formulated in pretty much all
founding documents of young opposing political parties, going back in
time for centuries.

This approach has failed for the Greens back then, and it failed again
for the Piratenpartei, that repeated the same mistakes even though in
2007 it had come up with a working group entitled "How to Not Repeat
The Mistakes of the Greens?"  -  the only tangible output being liquid

Something I have learned in these years is that you can't establish
ethical standards (be it sharing vs greed or any other parameter) as
long as the ones abusing the standard just a little bit will obtain
personal political advantage rather than disciplinary intervention.

And once the peers observe that one person managed to bend the ethical
standard a bit, they will start practicing it, too. In no time, you
will find yourself on a slippery slope to a general disregard of the
ethical ruleset that started the whole thing going.

This is what happened in the Piratenpartei in 2011 shortly after 
getting into the Berlin parliament. And it happens in political
movements all over the planet all the time. It doesn't really matter
WHICH is the ideology that tied the people together unto success -
success will start dismantling the ethical backbone of the project.

So your promotion of an ethical ideology is in best intentions, but
it leads to hell as it provides a platform for its abuse rather than
a solution.

The only solution I have heard of is intervention at the first
exhibition of wrong attitudes, especially in the early stage when
everyone is well-intended. To make sure it STAYS that way.

Anyone who calls this censorship hasn't had enough time to think
about it yet.

> We need to learn to give and appear vulnerable to attack, drawing in the

Appearing vulnerable to attack is what ultimately drove the
confidence of the population away from the Piraten. The
electorate never understood that our policy-making was never
seriously at risk by the loudmouths that were presented to
them in the media, yet appearing vulnerable to their excentic
behaviors was sufficient to blow us out of the competition.

And even today the Piraten are busy pointing fingers at each
other, criticizing the lack of character or ideology, and hardly
ever even think about the systemic mistakes that all organizations
of this kind go through - making it obvious that it CAN'T be
attributed to individual failure. At least to me, but I
seem to be a brain from outer space. And it's frequently easy to
pick something super superficial from what I said and point some
ideologic firehose at it.. like saying I promote censorship.

> weakness of our opposition as they send in their weakest ships to take us
> down. This means being generous and giving, rather than trying to reclaim
> or take back. We have to show a tendency to have the backs of the very
> people who will benefit from our activities. In my incompetence, I
> prevented this from happening 7 years ago when I was involved in the USA.

Whatever you do to keep people from publicly attacking their own
people. If for you that worked by mere promotion of a suitable ideology,
I believe you have been lucky and it is only a question of time until that
slips away. But do tell us more about your experiences. How did you make
this work out?

> But I've learned through some lateral involvement with the regime that
> their intent is in fact control. And the only way to defeat control is with
> compassion. When others feel that we have their backs, they will have ours.
> That's the way it actually works. Criticizing anyone at this point in time
> (including the MAFIAA) will only serve to erode whatever power we have. We
> have to spare our criticisms for when they will have an impact.

I don't see data to support your assertion that compassion defeats control.
Sounds a bit Walt Disney to me. Remember that many of our deepest convictions
were instilled into us by the children stories we absorbed. I see a much
more likely possibility to defeat control: to have a structure that actually
maintains people on the ethical guidelines they originally started out on,
thus growing in popularity until they get to the point of making policy.

So far I have seen only two types of political parties succeed. Either
they are leadership driven or vastly under control of authoritarian structure.
The leadership driven ones (Syriza and Tsipras as an example) tend to fall
apart the moment the leadership shakes. The authoritarian ones tend to
rule the world long-term.

I want to make a political movement where the rule of the participatory
platform that allows the entire party to develop rational political
choices is the ruling principle. I expect this to be the least worst
possible political party structure that can actually rule a country.
But it takes mechanisms that defend the collective from individual
attempts to impose their points of view, or otherwise we degenerate
to something that can *at best* be leadership driven. And by leadership
in this case I mean blind trust.

> I'm all for debate.
> If you don't have public media, then how do you get the word to those
> who don't know that there's another source? 

Use public media to promote THE message, the common one. In 2011 we
all echoed what we had developed together by liquid democracy - on
the streets and in the media - and it got us 15 seats in the parliament.
But on the next day Pirates started chit-chatting about their personal
points of view. And slowly you go down from there.

> There is a time and a place for impact. And that time and place must be
> chosen with care.

Like, actually having a strategy on how to talk to the media?
Man, I'm not even asking for that much. Cutting the crap would
be enough to make me happy.

> The problem you're having is that you're trying to be strong from a
> position of weakness. You can't do that and succeed. It never works.

Huh? Me? What?

> What I'm talking about is building the strength up in a more subtle way,
> using things that I've actually seen produce good results.

Marketing? Public relations? I'm not even thinking in those terms.
Of course it can be strategically a lot better if all internal
debate had a dedicated proper place to happen in.. not allow it
to be all over the place like fostering populism on Twitter..
while all communications to the outside reflect what we all
agree upon.

Maybe this could be a reasonable rule of thumb: Platforms that
only present one person's position are bad as they give a false
idea of the whole thing. Having comments underneath is less bad
but still insufficient. Platforms that will always present a
person's view in contrast with most others, ideally showing how
the individual positions lead up to a common policy - that is
transparency and that is fine. Again, a deep link into Liquid
Feedback is suitable: unless the proposal was buried by quorum,
a number of emendments and alternate proposals will reflect a
sense of where the debate is indeed heading. 

Then you only have to deal with journalists that will nastily rip 
something out of a balanced context and present it in a way where 
it can't be easily challenged. Then again, we are seeing it with
"Alternative für Deutschland:" journalists alone can't keep
supporters from believing in a political project, no matter how
ugly. It takes in-fight by the members of the project to
evaporate an electorate. That's why AfD is still afloat while
we have sunk. Or maybe we are Pirates in a submarine.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laRyswIO_-g or something.

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