The point is that when advertisers acquire information about potential customers and narrow the pool, they benefit others besides themselves. We need not start off suspicious of such a practice. One thing markets do best is produce information, and generally speaking, access to consumer information is a good… What’s the bigger threat: a company that buys information we’ve given up in order to sell us things, or the state, which ultimately seeks to control us?
Online companies might not be as nefarious as you think.
Convenience has a massive effect on your behavior. You rarely shop in your favorite store, eat in your favorite restaurant, or visit your favorite place. Why not? Because doing so is typically inconvenient. They’re too far away, or not open at the right hours, so you settle for second-best or third-best or tenth-best. You usually don’t switch your cell phone company, your streaming service, or your credit card just because a better option comes along. Why not? Because switching is not convenient. Students even pass up financial aid because they don’t feel like filling out the paperwork. Why not? You guessed it: Because paperwork is inconvenient.
Article I of the US Constitution requires Senator Paul to be an “inhabitant” of Kentucky as of each election in which he seeks to retain his seat. If Kentucky’s voters aren’t allowed to know where he lives, how can they know whether he’s eligible to continue serving as their Senator?
For many years I have heard the tired old comments about government agents prying guns from cold dead hands. I recall a man with 300 partners on a mountain pass once said something similar, but he demonstrated through his actions that he actually meant it. I don’t think YOU really mean it. Your contemporary bravado is fine if we accept it for what it is. In truth, are YOU really THAT resolute & tough?
Let me be clear: I consider suicide a tremendous tragedy. It has touched my life and my family very deeply, and personally. It seems to me that there are a thousand and one options, in most cases, before one should undertake such a dramatic, final, and irreversible course of action. That said, in the final analysis, the decision to live or not to live is – and should be – 100% the exclusive choice of the owner of that life – and never some outside party. Ever.
Episode 030 looks at being careful with what you send and do on your workplace computer; doing favors now for your future self; avoiding procrastination by committing to giving the task just 10 minutes, and seeing where that goes; the importance of saving money; spending minimalistically versus lavishly; and why it’s a good idea to love our kids for who they are instead of what we want them to do.
If you live in a cage, eat only the slugs and rats you can catch, wrap yourself in newspapers the wind blows in (when the wind brings you newspaper), sit in your own waste, and totally rely on someone else to decide everything that happens to you, and this is exactly how you want to live, you are completely free.
When I told my 13-year-old homeschooled daughter that I would be participating in an upcoming debate with the Harvard professor who recommends a “presumptive ban” on homeschooling, she asked incredulously, “Why would anyone want to prevent people from homeschooling?”
I don’t know which is the right answer, but I have considered (and lived) both approaches in my own small way. Right now I lean toward privacy – before I leaned toward publicity. But whatever the case, I hope to maintain the freedom to choose either.