anonymity is power. or rather, anonymity is freedom. objectification is power. objectification allows us to digitize, quantify, limit a person. we limit our self so that we can see our self better. objectification is the means of power. the ability to control another’s actions. the power to limit. by creating an image of a man and chaining the image to that man. these are the shackles of power. and the real trick is that you believe these shackles to be your self. you see your self as a combination of limits. you can not separate the image of your self from your self. “the soul is the prison of the body.” (foucault)
is there a way to break the link between your body and your objectification, between your body and your soul. this requires letting go of the self. it requires giving up your soul. it means living life in a flow of the present.
beyond the internal links between your self and your objectification, these links allow others to tie you to your objectification. and we carry these links around with us because we want to be objectified. it is through this objectification, through the image of our self, that we are rationed the power we have ‘earned.’ through checking accounts and credit cards and license plates, driver’s licenses, social security numbers, passports, insurance cards, library accounts, phone numbers, ip addresses, pentium 3 identification numbers, addresses, signatures, copyrights, patents, inspections, examinations, test results, grades, sat scores, iq. the entire economy is based on an objectification which we can not remove from the definition of our self. which we do not want to remove from our bodies because we believe in this economy. we carry our shackles in our pockets. and power, the real power, is an invisible objectification. the real power digitizes a person into information without revealing it’s self. that is, power comes from an economy of objectifying others more than your self. power comes from making others visible while remaining invisible your self. and the more powerful an entity becomes, the more difficult it becomes to conceal its identity. increasing power becomes less efficient because more energy must be dedicated to the retention of its invisibility. how do we find the truly powerful? the same way we find a black hole. by its effect. real power comes not only from understanding information (the offensive), but also from understanding anti-information (the defensive). an entity shrouded in a network of anti-information can defend against attacks of information by not disclosing the link between its self and its power. by leaving the gun at the scene of the crime. and beyond that information becomes ‘conspiracy theories.’ just the mention of entities like the world bank and the nsa brings a vague impression of power which can not be pinned down. an effect whose link to a power source remains undisclosed. and when you see certain effects it is impossible to tell who or what power caused the effect. how? by suggesting that you objectified your self. for example: why did pentium really put the id ‘feature’ in their chip? could it have been a conspiracy with the nsa to track terrorists? could it have been a conspiracy with the merchants to track consumers? could it have been a conspiracy with the software companies to track pirates? or could it have been, as they suggested, a conspiracy with the consumer to increase their ‘personalized experience’, to increase the limits of their self? or how about: e) all of the above?
genetic codes, national health id’s, unified credit/debit accounts, global positioning systems. will it all be rolled into a whole? it will not be forced on us. we will request it. we want to only have one card. better yet, one chip. we want to have our babies genetic code mapped at birth just in case they ever get stolen. (how about just in case they turn into murderers?) we beg for objectification because we are stupid. we believe in economy. we believe that everyone plays fair.
“Their fear is that the feature can be used to identify users who visit sites without making a purchase, even when they haven’t voluntarily given out their information. ” http://www.wired.com/news/news/technology/story/17478.html
“Satellites that track people are no longer reserved for enemies of the state. Global Positioning System technology is now being used to monitor convicted criminals on probation, parole, home detention, or work release. ” http://www.wired.com/news/news/technology/story/17296.html
“Francis Collins, chief of the U.S. Human Genome Project, said yesterday that the government-led gene mappers are now less than a year away from completing the first full “working draft” of the entire human DNA code. ” http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/1999/06/11/MN77176.DTL&type=tech_article
Said ACLU Legislative Counsel Gregory T. Nojeim, “If mandated by Congress for one purpose, we know from experience that a national ID card would eventually be required for engaging in even the most routine transactions– from opening a bank account to boarding an airplane to entering a building.” http://www.aclu.org/news/1999/n072299b.html
“Even at current levels of testing, the ACLU said that many individuals and families are experiencing discrimination. A 1996 Georgetown University study, for example, found that of 332 families belonging to genetic disease support groups, 22 percent said they had been refused health insurance and 13 percent said they had been fired from their jobs because of the perceived risks attributed to their genetic status.
And the numbers are rising. A 1982 federal survey found at 1.6 percent of companies used genetic testing for employment purposes. Last year, according to a similar survey conducted by the American Management Association, the number had increased to approximately 10 percent of employers.” http://www.aclu.org/news/n052198a.html
“According to a recent University of Illinois survey, 35 percent of Fortune 500 companies check medical records before they hire or promote.”