Feb 2, 2008

Liberty versus Control

I always enjoy reading Bruce Schneier's blog about security matters. He seems to have a good sense about him and not the far right "if you don't have anything to hide, why not let them search your things" attitude.

Here is a quote from his latest:
"We've been told we have to trade off security and privacy so often ... that most of us don't even question the fundamental dichotomy. But it's a false one. Security and privacy are not opposite ends of a seesaw; you don't have to accept less of one to get more of the other. ...

Since 9/11, approximately three things have potentially improved airline security: reinforcing the cockpit doors, passengers realizing they have to fight back and -- possibly -- sky marshals. Everything else -- all the security measures that affect privacy -- is just security theater and a waste of effort.

By the same token, many of the anti-privacy 'security' measures we're seeing -- national ID cards, warrantless eavesdropping, massive data mining and so on -- do little to improve, and in some cases harm, security. And government claims of their success are either wrong, or against fake threats.

The debate isn't security versus privacy. It's liberty versus control."

-- Security expert Bruce Schneier

Read the rest here:


  1. That's well said. I'm gonna have to go read his article.

    And I'm gonna have to link to your blog. Good stuff, Maynard.

  2. Thanks for the link SD. Bruce's blog is excellent.
    Your link has two http: prefix which confused me a little, and the Maynard completely threw me; or is it all a conspiracy???

  3. why dew yew hate Amerikuh so much?! Dontcha' know that this tattoo of a barcode on th' back of your neck is for YOUR protection?! So is this GPS anklet. And this camera pointing at your house. And this fence across state lines. And don't forget to carry your passport when going out to dinner. If we DON'T do this stuff, we're letting the terrorists win!!

  4. Chris: Thanks for dropping by, I went over to check out your blog also.

    Sans: Thanks for the heads up on the link, I fat fingered my cut and paste. Maynard is from a Malt-O-Meal commercial in the 70's.

    HL: I will wear the bracelet on the ankle, but only cause I like to assessorize so much!

  5. Anonymous3:12 PM

    That's a very good point.

  6. Thanks for posting that. I'd never heard of Schneier before, and now I'm sure I'll be reading (and quoting) him in the future.

  7. I don't think I was on his blog, but I read this somewhere! Spot on.

  8. I agree with Bruce completely. Airport security is so hit or miss that I have accidently carried a box cutter through without incident then later been rescreened because the TSA dude didn't like the look of a cell phone charger. The only reason I feel safer is that I am fairly certain that my fellow passengers are willing to die fighting than to be led to slaughter like sheep.

  9. The "security theater" takes one long curtain call too.