I’ll preface this by saying this is *not* an anime-related article. If you’re only here for my anime-related content, I won’t blame you for ignoring this post… though I do hope you’ll humour me!
I feel it’s been a while since my last post, and I felt obligated to give you guys an update. I’ve been unusually bad at avoiding real-world work lately, and haven’t had as much time to dedicate to writing. This lack of time has found me falling behind on my anime-watching habits, and consequently short on material to use for my normal content. Nevertheless, I hope you find this article worth your time….
It’s difficult these days to spend a prolonged time in public or online discourse without politics entering the discussion in some form. It bores me intensely, and I do my best to avoid it (though this wasn’t always the case, as some may know, to my chagrin). Even so, I sometimes find myself caught up in one of these discussions without an inconspicuous way of extricating myself. People inevitably want to know which side I’m on.
I usually take this opportunity to redirect the conversation to something more fruitful, more abstract. Politics, after all, is just lowbrow philosophy– and talking about it almost always ends up ruffling some feathers. So in order to explain my stance, and to ward away my jaded feelings, I talk about the internet.
I love the internet, though I acknowledge how easy it is to think the world would be better off without it at times. Why do I love the internet so much? Well, the simple answer is because I’m a firm believer in Anarchism.
No, not like the hooligans in black using revolution as pretext for petty crime, who lack the honesty and foresight to so little as avoid turning the rest of the world against their so-claimed ideals with reckless acts of vandalism. We’re at least several centuries too early to bear the responsibility of the social structures they claim to champion. It’s the acknowledgement of that fact that sets me, and people like me, apart.
I dislike structure, and rules in general. They confine the mind, constrict the soul. They have an inexorable place in fields such as maths; but overall, I believe rules exist to be broken. As any corrupt politician or multimillion-dollar businessman knows, there is only one law in our society: Don’t get caught. All else is a question of morality. What they don’t acknowledge is that morality is infinitely more important than law.
I dream of a world without laws, without politicians, where justice is pure and rational, where we have all these virtues, without society degenerating into a chaotic free-for-all, because all of us are rational, free-thinking human beings, who make full use of the mental faculties we’ve been gifted and cursed with. Rules overcomplicate things, and condition people into thinking that things must be overcomplicated– that the convolution we endure daily is somehow inevitable. Why think otherwise if that complication is all you’ve ever known?
So, what does this all have to do with the internet? Well, if you haven’t figured it out for yourself yet, it’s because the internet is, effectively, a simulation of my ideal world in practice, enacted before our eyes in real-time. The status of the global village that is the internet serves as indicator of what the real world might look like under my set of ideals. It is my indicator that we are not yet ready for my society. We are too selfish, immature, irresponsible as a global people; though I hope that will not always be the case.
This is why I see those that seek to control the internet, tame it, as we did the Wild West, transform it into a facsimile of our real world, as enemies of nearly all I stand for. I don’t stand for chaos, but I do not stand for order. I stand for reason. The internet is true freedom, without the risks that true freedom would have in the real world. As long as it does not significantly harm anyone without justifiable reason, it should be allowed on the internet. It should go without saying that there should be no platform whatsoever for things like child porn or fraud, or any other sort of crime that is morally-reprehensible regardless of the medium through which it is enacted; but everything short of that? I’d say it does more good, overall, than harm. Much of what you experience online, however unpleasant, runs no true risk of hurting you, and megacorporations have enough laws in the real world protecting them that a free internet poses no significant threat to them.
I write this as I am fearful for the future of the internet. It becomes more and more difficult to access things that should be universal, without coughing up money to some sort of power-hungry conglomerate– which we already do more than enough of IRL. Britain and other governments have elected to start policing the internet equivalent of schoolyard bullying, giving no obvious priority to more serious threats. Resources these days are already spread thin, and we are squandering them on regulating something that has largely regulated itself perfectly fine for nearly 30 years now, and offers more insight into our theoretical futures than harm. It’s impractical and short-sighted, in my opinion. The internet could and should serve as our virtual training ground for a simpler, more rational, and overall brighter future.
Anyways, I’m sure some people have their own opinions on the topic. If you’d like to discuss, feel free to leave a comment and tell me what you think about the matter. You don’t have to agree with me; all I ask is that we keep things civil 🙂 .