Ask any Democrat about Bradley Manning. This is probably what they will say.
You don’t have to graduate high school to understand that by uttering the words “He broke the law,” President Obama has overstepped the powers granted to him by the constitution. My memory of 5th grade civics is a little distant, but I think it’s the judicial branch of government that gets to declare when the law is broken.
It’s important to understand that this is a civil issue and not a military one. There is absolutely no evidence that any members of the military have come to harm because of Bradley Manning’s alleged leaks. Not only that, but the leaks in question were not sold to our enemies. They were revealed to the entire world. This is the only proper context from which to view Bradley Manning’s alleged crimes. In such a context, the leaks can only be described as civil disobedience. The media, the military, and Barack Obama himself have told every possible lie to obscure the proper understanding of this issue from the general public. Those within the Obama administration who speak out are purged.
Ask a Democrat about why Barack Obama decided to escalate war in Afghanistan. They will most likely tell you that it was completely necessary in order for us to win. Thanks to Bradley Manning, we know this is a lie. The idea that innocent civilians suffer most from war is now fact. No civilian or soldier on either side wins this kind of war. Should that really be a state secret?
Ask a Democrat about Libya. They’ll tell you we’re just doing what the UN told us to, keeping Gaddafi from committing genocide. They regurgitate Obama’s bullshit as if it was their own. Oh, there are no boots on the ground — just special forces and CIA. Gaddafi doesn’t need his meager air force to continue genocide. He has plenty of artillery to indiscriminately shell rebel-held cities. He still has plenty of tanks to crush his citizens.
We, as a people, must remember the economic benefit of expending bombs and using up fuel. It means more money for big business. America doesn’t have much of an interest in Libya except that gigantic corporations stand to profit. Should public opinion support a ground war, we will have it. Barack Obama’s voice for hope and change will continue to infect humanity with death and condemn those who stand for true change.
It’s interesting what information Bradley Manning holds in the recesses of his shattered mind. Obama knows that Manning has a network of supporters in every level of government and military. For Manning, this has meant months of humiliation and cold, sleepless nights. Bradley Manning’s silence has protected American dissidents from a Stalinist purge.
“Well, as long as Obama says its okay.”
The man winced as a meaty fist came down again on his lifeless girlfriend.
Four army rangers stood in a circle, preparing to gangfuck her when Frank could stand life no more. He cried out,
“You fucking rotten-ass jarheads! You disgusting pigs! War-mongering shit-for-brains rednecks, I pray to God there’s a hell and you fucking rot there.” Frank’s eyes were hate-tipped daggers.
“Hey, boy.” A fat-necked man with a blond-colored buzzcut turned around. His belt was unbuckled and his puffy cheeks were flushed with alcohol and hormonal rage. His whole body shone with a sweaty glaze under the streetlamp.
“Boy…after we do her, you’re next.”
The sounds of continuous, repetitive smacking syncopated his threat.
Frank stared into the rapist’s cold beady eyes. He spoke again.
“You do me first or I’ll fucking kill you. I’ll kill all of you right here in this parking lot.” Frank screamed hoarsely now through sobs of frustration and pure and total sadness, defeat.
Frank attempted to clamber to his feet but his hips and knees had already been kicked and beaten into uselessness. He collapsed again, knocking his chin on the pavement and cracking some teeth. All he could do is scream. And he did, with blood and bits of teeth dripping and spraying from his beat-up maw. Frank bellowed a throaty, hellish war-cry that could be heard for at least two miles, or three from the direction in which it bounced off the mall walls.
He could not bare witness to the rape of his best friend. It burned like acid on the frontal lobe of his imagination.
He closed his eyes and instead imagined her riding along with him to the grocery store, where they threw cheese at other and made a mess of the place. Then he imagined their hot walks through the Appalachian mountains, and DVDs of cartoons, and cold showers in the summertime. And then — a hot sensation overcame Frank’s entire body as something like pure anti-matter replaced the right side of his face. A crowbar smashed into his jaw, and then into his temple.
Rolling over from the pain, Frank lay on his left side and looked out through the one good eye not swollen and dark, to see the fat buzzcut man standing in his underwear, with the dark cast-iron weapon in hand.
That is when he knew that he recognized the man. Weeks earlier, he’d seen him somewhere. Where was it?
Another blow landed on Frank’s abdomen, making his insides feel like a squishy stress ball coated in pure spongy agony. As the crowbar came down on his guts, he noticed a wedding band on the man’s finger, clenching the tool.
Frank’s girlfriend, he hoped, was dead by this point, so she could suffer no more.
“The coffee shop!” he screamed out. “I know your fat ass from the coffee shop! You were there with your dipshit wife! She’s cheating on you, bro!” Frank laughed out hysterically. “Ha – ha – haaaa!” Frank felt, on some level, that he had won.
“She had a big stupid forehead and was shopping for Us Weekly. Her blond hair looked like shit and even though she’s pregnant you bought her a coffee and cigarettes.”
The fat man stood shocked. Frank went on.
“But that’s not what is so funny! Before you appeared with her, she’d come into the coffee shop with another man, some guy in biker spandex. Ha, she was cheating on you with some shit-for-brains liberal. Ha – ha – haaaa!” Frank laughed again, rolling around in the gravel. Moonlight and street lamps shone into his deep cuts to reveal dirt and rocks wedged into his face and abdomen. He was sure to get an infection from the liquid seeping out of the dumpster where he lay.
“Yeah, looks like she’s been cheating on you for a while, dude, maybe because you’re a meat-headed gung-ho redneck motherfucker. I doubt that’s even your baby. I doubt you can even get it up to rape my girlfriend, or why else would you be standing here watching over me? You impotent fuck. You worthless scum sub-human being motherfucker! Whose war are you fighting here in this alleyway? Will you ever fight your own? Piece of shit. Your wife gave me this look like she wanted my dick, I don’t fuck with bitches who got big foreheads and their hair pulled way back like I’m supposed to use it for a marker board during a presentation. Nah, man. I didn’t fuck your wife. But you go ahead and rape me and my girlfriend. See you in hell, sir.”
Frank lay back and wait, now, for death.
It was quiet. He looked toward his girlfriend’s limp corpse. It lay motionless, bloody and pathetic. He looked back at the fat man, who was gone completely.
Below is the beginning to Bruce Sterling’s The Hacker Crackdown, an important history of the phenomenon that has become Anonymous. Anonymous has a new face but is as old as the first telephone network.
On January 15, 1990, AT&T’s long-distance telephone switching system crashed.
This was a strange, dire, huge event. Sixty thousand people lost their telephone service completely. During the nine long hours of frantic effort that it took to restore service, some seventy million telephone calls went uncompleted.
Losses of service, known as “outages” in the telco trade, are a known and accepted hazard of the telephone business. Hurricanes hit, and phone cables get snapped by the thousands. Earthquakes wrench through buried fiber-optic lines. Switching stations catch fire and burn to the ground. These things do happen. There are contingency plans for them, and decades of experience in dealing with them. But the Crash of January 15 was unprecedented. It was unbelievably huge, and it occurred for no apparent physical reason.
The crash started on a Monday afternoon in a single switching- station in Manhattan. But, unlike any merely physical damage, it spread and spread. Station after station across America collapsed in a chain reaction, until fully half of AT&T’s network had gone haywire and the remaining half was hard-put to handle the overflow.
Within nine hours, AT&T software engineers more or less understood what had caused the crash. Replicating the problem exactly, poring over software line by line, took them a couple of weeks. But because it was hard to understand technically, the full truth of the matter and its implications were not widely and thoroughly aired and explained. The root cause of the crash remained obscure, surrounded by rumor and fear. The crash was a grave corporate embarrassment. The “culprit” was a bug in AT&T’s own software — not the sort of admission the telecommunications giant wanted to make, especially in the face of increasing competition. Still, the truth was told, in the baffling technical terms necessary to explain it.
Somehow the explanation failed to persuade American law enforcement officials and even telephone corporate security personnel. These people were not technical experts or software wizards, and they had their own suspicions about the cause of this disaster.
The police and telco security had important sources of information denied to mere software engineers. They had informants in the computer underground and years of experience in dealing with high-tech rascality that seemed to grow ever more sophisticated. For years they had been expecting a direct and savage attack against the American national telephone system. And with the Crash of January 15 — the first month of a new, high-tech decade — their predictions, fears, and suspicions seemed at last to have entered the real world. A world where the telephone system had not merely crashed, but, quite likely,been crashed — by “hackers.”
Anonymous, you are a thorn in the side of corporations and government. The AT&T crisis in 1990 that led to the hacker crackdown is very much like what is happening now with Sony. Regardless of the nature of the outage, Anonymous will take blame from many groups. Should history repeat itself, these groups will include Playstation owners, Sony security officials, and law enforcement officials.
Yesterday, Sony purposefully shut down its own Playstation Network servers to save itself billions in operating costs. This move was shrouded with rumors that Anonymous has yet again resorted to the unpopular DDoS attacks that led to the failed “boycott” of Sony products on April 16th. Sony, as always, has made a meaningless and vague statement about their network status in an attempt to counter any blame.
Despite their own miserable failure with Sony, Anonymous has not even had time to come up with a new strategy. In fact, Anonymous has entirely lost interest in wasting their time on Sony. Playstation 3 owners have reactivated their violent urges which are at a steady boiling point without Call of Duty: Black Ops. The last bastion of truly free press, AnonNews.org, has been under sporadic DDoS attacks that may have originated from “Sonyfags” or the Playstation Network itself.
Now with a scapegoat for all future network outages, Sony is free to mistreat their own user base without discretion. Sony currently has a plan in the works to create paid Playstation “Gold” accounts that will not suffer from network outages which disable completely unrelated services such as Netflix and Skype. This strategy is consistent with Reddit’s current “downtime” that allows only paid Reddit “Gold” accounts the ability to log in.
Free information and net neutrality is dying at the altar of Anonymous, as I have predicted. Public opinion is being manipulated by the global oligarchs who control multi-national corporations like Sony. The people are being whipped into a hate-storm that can only end with mass vannings of the Anonymous collective.
UPDATE: Sony has admitted that the database of personal information on PSN has been compromised. Anonymous sides with the users of PSN in filing a class action lawsuit against the incompetence of Sony!
Years before 4chan, I was the first person to create an Anonymous internet message board that had any effect at all in real life. As the most experienced Anon on Earth, I’m also the first person to realize what a piece of bullshit Anonymous has become. Your organization draws in script kiddies and conspiracy theorists. I am probably the only intelligent person who has been drawn into your “hacktivist” cesspool.
Anonymous is an organization. At one time it wasn’t, but it is now. The leaders only keep saying they aren’t leading to cover their own ass. Yes, you’re like a cult, but not because I think you’re a religious sect. You’re more like the people who believe 9/11 was an inside job. They’re very much a belief cult, sacrificing all skepticism to satisfy their own need for meaning. Anonymous is exactly the same, and this is why I call you a cult. I’m not trolling you poor suckers, I am just educating you by example. God knows, you need it.
Besides understanding the bigger picture better than everyone else, I’m also just plain smarter than you are. You call my writing bad, but I have a prose and style that shames your best writer, Barrett Brown. Few members of Anonymous can even write a proper sentence, and most have no grasp of grammar whatsoever. I use big words that cause dictionary.com’s servers to get overloaded by hordes of raging Anons. I consistently pick topics that mean the most to you just so I can turn them against you. I know, I know, hold your applause till the end.
So not everyone is a writer. Anonymous is a diverse group! Well, apparently, I’m better than your best social engineers, too. Social engineers are kind of like mental hackers who use simple tricks to get people to reveal personal information. I’ve been approached by unrealistic sycophantic personalities who are so painfully and obviously bad that I can’t help but lead them on. In fact, they’re kind of funny. So I’ll post some e-mails I’ve gotten from these especially poor social engineers just to prove how much better I am than Anonymous. This particular fellow is an “artist” like me. I suppose I should sympathize with him.
…asking you to register. I apologize. I didn’t really think through what I was asking of you, or rather, what it looked like I was asking of you. I had directed you to a forum community that was originally launched as an “Anonymous Operation” – the whole OpESR thing. Let me say first that I’m not part of Anonymous, I never claim to be part of it, I never want to be part of it. I wanted to get in touch with you on that website because I’m trying to pull people together. I want to try and get a real, constructive discussion going, with a goal and results oriented approach, instead of just having invisible faces stoking populist anger to direct them towards movements.
This is part of the first e-mail I received, but not the first communication. Social engineers are slippery like that, and will use any stupid trick to worm their way into your trust. I loled at this, and replied:
I am very interested in corresponding with you if you’ve got some interesting insights about Anonymous, or a relevant tale of your own to tell. Please, share with me.
I also explained quite clearly that I wasn’t interested in helping out with any kind of activism. He replied with a very long and very boring e-mail that in retrospect has only one interesting part. It’s such an obvious regurgitation of “Why Anonymous is Completely Irrelevant” that I shit myself. I just wrote that article to piss Anonymous off and get my name out there! The generalizations he made sicken me.
…I’ve met many of the feared Anonymous members in person, and all the stereotypes hold true; they’re socially awkward, outcast people who generally mean pretty well and, for lack of a reason to strive in life, they fill most of their time with the acquisition of monetary and material goods.
At the end of that e-mail was an attachment, listing all the issues that he ostensibly wanted to discuss with me. So I picked one that is near to my heart, education reform. The core of my message is here:
One of the underlying themes to my writing is that access to media is worthless unless one has the proper context from which to judge it. So many people lack the critical thinking to notice the way that media frames reporting to twist their own perception, and I see this as a failure in education.
We had a meaningful conversation about the problems with education, and as soon as he thought he had my trust, I received his first attempt at phishing. I tried to ignore it, just so I could keep him going, but after that he was quick to annoy me. I tried to make him go away by not replying to his e-mails, and he came back at me with this.
I just had a thought. Are you in the US? What about a movement to pressure Congress into passing legislation that allows students to actually be able to discharge their student debt?
Oh, I see. More activism that I don’t want to be involved with. Well, I don’t mind tossing around a few ideas for fun.
One idea I feel is quite potent on this topic is the organized non-payment of student loans. This would be somewhat similar to a labor strike in that its purpose would be to create a bargaining mechanism for everyone who has a student loan–whether they are struggling or not. Unlike with mortgages, there is no threat of foreclosure. Unemployed and underemployed graduates with little to lose may be very willing to participate. Considering it means extra money in their pockets to fight a good cause, I’d guess they’d be very willing indeed.
At this point, the lame social engineer thought I was hooked, so he went back to the same old shit. Trying to get me involved in something I’d declined two times already.
I want to be able to pull in everyone with this. I’ve already started a bit in Rochester NY, I’ve got some ideas. So far I’ve volunteered to teach after school classes, or rather, I’m trying to find out. I just had a chance encounter with someone who is doing the same. I guess my first course of action is to get a job, so I can feed myself (even if I don’t I’ve got nice enough family to keep me going at least through this summer). After that, I’m going to try to see about creating this sort of backdoor schooling system. I don’t want people to have to pay $160,000 for a college education, so I’d be happy to give it to folks for free. That being said; two questions;
1) Do you want to start something? and 2) Where do you think we should start it?
This was really just too much. What kind of maniac would read anything that I say and believe that I’m someone who can help out? Perhaps he believes that I am so self-absorbed as to think my endorsement will make or break a cause. There was no letting this invented identity continue down this sick path. The answer he was praying for was: Yes! I would love to help you start an Anonymous Operation. But he didn’t get it, and none of you ever will.
So Anon, you’ll have to call in the heavies if you want access to my accounts. Lame phishers and cocksuckers like this won’t work on me. I have more experience than any other Anon out there. Oh, I remember being 16 and creating an underage female persona who got DJs to play every single song I asked for. It was fucking hilarious. I’m the most experienced Anon ever, and don’t you forget it.
I’ll say it publicly, because I don’t want more failphishers trying to trick me into saying it privately. If you have no money and you want to change the world with a great idea, you’re fucked. Of course, there are two exceptions. One is Facebook, and the other is Anonymous. If you want to know why Anonymous hates Facebook so much, it’s because Facebook is what organized the democratic uprising in the Arab world. Everyone knows it was not you, Anonymous. Only you believe that you were responsible. But I’m smart enough to realize that the things Barrett Brown writes and says are twisted and designed to control you. You had no influence whatsoever on these democratic uprisings, and you are too fucking dumb to realize it. That is why I am so much better than you are.
I am Anonymous
I am Legion
I do not forgive
I do not forget
"I really thought we had them, this time..."
Yesterday over 3,000 members of Anonymous showed up in Sony retail outlets around the world. Their stated intent was to raise awareness about how they could not run Linux on a Playstation, a feature Sony has removed due to problems with piracy. Their complaint only helped salesman bring attention to new features in Sony products. Meanwhile, customers mocked and teased “Anons” so deeply that the shame even penetrated their wicked Guy Fawkes masks from V for Vendetta. These “boycotts” were a free publicity gift from Anonymous to Sony that actually increased sales.
This is part of a disturbing new trend for Anonymous, which seems to be increasingly ready to self-destruct all over the wrong targets. After siding with the freedom of speech during the WikiLeaks cablegate crisis, Anonymous has been unable to find an equally righteous cause. Sony has done no wrong that their customers can even understand. Failing to see this fact time and time again, the “hyper-conscious” Anonymous has acted out their own “We do not forgive” mantra until it’s turned into real-life public humiliation.
Completely unable to recognize the views of the outside world, the ever more cult-like Anonymous is left to grapple with its internal power structures. The respect that leaders within “Operation” Payback gained from attacking Mastercard, Paypal, and Visa in defense of Julian Assange has been used to turn a one-off “operation” into several months of humiliating failures. The creators of “Operation” Payback are simply choosing targets to keep their peons interested. As Anonymous continues to claim that they have no leaders, the world wonders why they’re acting like they do. The leaders of “Operation” Payback are coercing actions out of Anonymous.
Anonymous claims to be self-critical and self-correcting. Anonymous claims to have no leadership. Yet any criticism of leadership within Anonymous leads to excommunication. They will say “it cannot possibly happen, because we are anarchic.” This naive idea is encoded into the culture. To criticize the individuals who do clearly lead will often result in Anons making the equivalent of an argument for divine right. They have taken the reins of Anarchy, so they deserve their power. Quite wrongly, Anons often refer to this idea as meritocracy.
Another tactic to deflect attention from the growth of the cult leader class are the “democratic” mechanisms within Anonymous. Anyone who has witnessed a vote in action can not help but wonder: How is it that a group of around fifty voters represents the hundreds or thousands that it takes to carry out protests and attacks? It is fairly obvious that the cult leaders of Anonymous use democracy only as a show to maintain a positive identity.
Anonymous isn’t anarchy.
Anonymous isn’t meritocracy.
Anonymous isn’t democracy.
Anonymous is cult.
Pro-Ignorance and Anti-Intellectualism in Western Societies
The pro-ignorance movement in this country is impressive, you have to admit.
We are among a population that champions their ignorance and “choice” not to keep up with the news.
“My country takes care of me. I don’t need no news, because we’re the greatest nation in the world and that’s all I need to know.”
We’re a population that considers the simplification of far-reaching concepts into four-word sentences a smart thing to do.
You can’t explain that.
Freedom isn’t free.
“We are anonymous,” and that mantra.
It’s an impressive movement that took off fast after 9/11 when the media decided you are either with us or against us and the lemmings followed. They followed so far that you can tell by certain behaviors in certain people that your attempted intellectual dialog is regarded as elitist snobbery.
It’s an emerging worldview that means so much to the Western Way of Life, it would take four wars and visible corporate slavery before the peons question it, but only so far as the demands of a workday permit.
And now that the FOX News pro-White House rhetoric is consuming its own diarrhea, mutations of political conviction have spawned what’s known as the American Tea Party – or, the next Neo-Con movement.
It’s so far-right that not even right-wingers are able to pick up on the nightmarish socioeconomic endgame in which we are all the pawns – fighting and dying for unseen corporate overlords – for the kings and queens of the third-world human plantation.
“I knowed they’d git ye!”
-Papaw, regarding my egregious online activity
Picking cotton for sale to the white man is the old version of buying cell phones, Gap t-shirts and Christmas lights from your local retail chain.
Your standard Christmas lights are manufactured by Chinese slaves who were caught practicing non-state-sanctioned Christianity and thrown into labor camps.
That’s capitalism. Go where the money is.
“What happened to the freedom to make money?”
The top 1% controlling 80% of the world’s wealth, that’s what! [You silly goose!]
Okay seriously, though. Some freedoms still exist! Like the freedom to serve our corporate masters – just like the Chinese apartments where rent costs match exactly the wages paid out by the companies that own the living quarters – except in America we get to drive our big gas-guzzling carshackles from our holding cells to the sweatshop – where vacations, health insurance and sick-days are all but deteriorated. Modern day freedom is disguised as mobile slavery.
“My pawn goes here, your pawn there. They will fight perpetually – building a wall. They can’t move past the deadlock. See? The old system never changes. Send out your bishops to die, so we look vulnerable; so the peons can identify with us; so they continue to fight; continue to waste.”
They game viciously. Applied statistics and Keynesian economics the only rules. Greed, and contempt, the parallel forces at work.
“What’s your score? Mine’s higher.”
Genocide, religious war and rape are the disease. Greed is the pathogen. Humanity is the host. Now we are a stinking rotten corpse and in its shuddering death throes croaks, “America number 1. U-S-A! I’ll die for freedom.”
The anti-intellectualism movement is the next phase in turning the populus against itself. Without the verbal skills necessary for true democracy, there can be no public discourse, no prolonged organization and no impetus for action against our slave-driving leaders or the government bodies that enable them.
WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.
I have created a group called (Sadists) Anonymous, which is designed to let sadists vent their urge to cause others harm. We sadists love to harm people’s personal lives because otherwise we would have no power over anyone.
Oh, don’t worry, we rationalize our sadistic acts so that all members can feel justified in hurting others. It’s comparable to how serial killers target hookers and the homeless. We here at Anonymous just like to hurt people, that’s all. When it comes right down to it, we don’t really care if they’re innocent or not. So long as we get the feeling of power over somebody else, we feel justified.
We also use public opinion to help in our efforts at rationalizing our sadism. For instance, when public opinion of Sony became low enough, we decided to harm the personal lives of their executives. Nothing like seeing someone important in pain. We are judge, jury, and doxecutioner.
Sometimes, we accidentally go after someone who is more sadistic than we are. We hold these people up as examples of how justified our hateful nature truly is. Nothing like making an example of a sadist to justify acts of hatred.
We look forward to recreating the world in our own image through threats and violence. We don’t frown upon images of tortured people or dead kittens. This only helps to fuel our progress.
We are Sadists Anonymous
We do not forgive
We do not forget
So who are you? What are you? What are your goals? Where are you heading? How do you see the world changing? How do you see yourself as an actor in whatever events you predict?
I’m a quiet, humble, and generally very shy person. That is, when I am not on the internet. Online, I’m outspoken, disagreeable, and prone to make wildly dramatic gestures. I am a Science Fiction junkie and a computer nerd. I was the kid who everyone thought of as a bad ass hacker genius in school. I wasn’t and still am not. That’s roughly who I am.
I created an anonymous message board in 2002, when I was in high school. I was threatened with lawsuits and punished in other ways. Every kid in school became too afraid to post anything, so I shut it down. I’ve written online in some form or another since 2001, but only this year have I had any significant readership. This is almost entirely due to AnonNews. That’s roughly what I am.
My goal is simple. I want Anonymous to look at itself critically.
Powerful organizations and individuals clamp down on the lives of the general populace for their own gain until the people rise up. It’s an endless cycle. I see the influence of communication technology quickening the pace of this cycle for both sides of this struggle. I’d say that this time, the people have the upper hand. That’s how I see the world changing.
My part in it all is hard for me to understand. I am compelled to write, and I don’t stop to wonder why. I do, however, wonder why people still read what I have to write. Perhaps it’s just because I keep spamming it on AnonNews. Maybe, just maybe, Anonymous secretly wants a conscience. I don’t think there is anything wrong with questioning the rightness of everything they do. To tie this in with my previously mentioned goal, I’ve got to ask: Has Anonymous become more critical of itself? I don’t really know. Anonymous hasn’t been around all that long, and I’ve been around for even less time. Still, I will mention Westboro Baptist and Sony, because they’re two cases, since I’ve been around, where Anonymous has criticized itself. I don’t know if Anonymous has ever denied DDoSing web sites before, but I think it is at least worth noting.
“…Anonymous has many of the characteristics of any other cult. The propagation of Anonymous is perhaps unique to the internet and also to history. I don’t know how informed or interested you are in Anonymous, but it is really of great interest to me.
Describing Anonymous is dicey and there aren’t a lot of good terms. By participating in large scale Anonymous message boards participants alter their own personality somewhat and lose their inhibition. The resulting group action is wild.
Concepts out of science fiction are worshiped by Anonymous. Members claim to be part of a hyper-conscious entity that lives in cyberspace. They often repeat a dogma that Anonymous will awaken humanity and lead the way to a better world. Of course, this is where the cult alarms start going off in my head. Still, Anonymous often postures itself as anti-cult. Anonymous is well known for protesting against Scientology and defacing the Westboro Baptist’s web site (godhatesfags.com). I see this as a way for Anonymous to deflect their own knowledge that they too are a cult…”
That is an excerpt from an e-mail I wrote, seeking the wisdom of someone smarter than myself. He agreed that it sounded cult-like, the way I described it. Not all Anons hold these beliefs, I know. It’s still important though, to be self-critical and conscious of the outside world’s view. Let me quote Wikipedia’s definition of Anonymous, which cites Chris Landers of the Baltimore City Paper.
Anonymous (used as a mass noun) is an Internet meme originating 2003 on the imageboard 4chan, representing the concept of many online community users simultaneously existing as an anarchic, digitized global brain.
So what’s the harm in coming off a little cultish? Appealing to the need each person has for meaning and purpose is only natural, of course. Well, I’d take a hard look at the significance of the movie V for Vendetta and the motto of Anonymous, even if they’re used tongue-in-cheek. I won’t forget that the combination of even a little bit of self-righteous ideology and the wrong imagery is a recipe for violence. To ignore that fact would be terribly naive. I hate to think of what damage one off-balance person with a Guy Fawkes mask and the wrong ideas could do to the lives of real human beings. If I could do just one thing for Anonymous, it would be to make their most important message non-violence.
Those are the best answers to your questions, No-one. Except for one. You asked where I am heading, and I have no idea. I leave that one for Anon to answer.
I’d like to make note of the role my friend Ol’ Brutus has played in these events. He’s always suffered more than I have for all this shit–in school, as well as at present. He was an instrumental part in the Anonymous message board in high school and even more so for the Chronicle. Nothing I have done would have been possible without him.
I’m sick of you Anonymous, and you’re sick of me too. I loved all the flame wars, the troll battles, and the massively inflated web traffic. My favorite part was when we started accusing each other of being organized by the government.
I’m going to engage in plain-talk, for those who don’t understand my shitty brand of paranoid satire. This is the real discourse you wanted me to engage in but no longer care to hear. This is the age of transparency, though, amirite?
You’re getting cult-like. This is why I play the voice of dissent. Not because I hate what you do. I hate your motto and your symbols. The Guy Fawkes masks are a uniform. The word “we” that begins each line in your motto admits you are a group. The threat, “expect us,” is addressed to all enemies of your group.
But go ahead, you can have it all. You won’t hurt me, the way you keep threatening everybody. You won’t hurt me by wearing the mask of a violent revolutionary. You’re at least mostly non-violent, right?
One may not own knowledge.
One owns only one’s self.
Time bares all lies.
Time teaches all lessons.
Technology applied, saves time.