Torture and rights to privacy

listo factor listofactor at
Sat Aug 27 09:30:45 CEST 2016

It would help if in similar discussions participants first find
out what are the ethical fundamentals that they agree on. May I
suggest the following:

1) Torture is absolutely unacceptable. It includes not only
physical harm to the individual's body, bit also actions that
instill pain or fear without leaving permanent marks on the body
(water-boarding, mock executions...), mind-altering pharmaceuticals
or keeping one locked up for refusing either a confession or
self-incriminatory evidence.

2) No one can prevent an individual to keep his journals or ledgers
in a language that only he understands, or any two individuals to
communicate in such language. The fact that such language happens
to be a stream of ones and zeros changes nothing, as does not the
fact that a mechanical or electronic device - instead of pen and
paper - may be used for reading and writing this language. Mere
possession and use of such device can not be considered a
transgression, any more than a possession of pen and paper.

These two principles seem to me to be universal. After that, it
becomes the matter of an individual jurisdiction law and the
majority rule.

Personally, I would not be much thrilled to live under a government
that restricts the trade in the aforementioned devices, or worse,
punishes someone for constructing them and making them available.
I have lived long enough too see many different governments
manipulate the public, typically using a mixture of fear-mongering
and ideology, to accept various laws that are quite unpalatable to
me. However, the discussion of one particular government's behavior
is best left to it's citizens.

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