Burning Man’s First Technology Guru Fighting #fakenews

The blockchain offers a new world of possibility, not just for crypto-currency or providing disaster relief, but also for truth – something I am extremely interested in.

It seems I’m not the only one. Burning Man’s first Chief Technology Guru, Brian Behlendorf, is one of the whales of the tech industry.

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Image: LinkedIn

BB went on from Burning Man to Davos and the World Economic Forum, and is on the board of the EFF and popular “secure” communications app Wickr. He also used to run the SFRaves mailing list. Oh, and half of the entire World Wide Web runs on his Apache web server – which is open source.

old skool raver

Old skool raver

His plan to fight fake news? Put Snopes on the blockchain. Get the list of “what’s fake news” and record that on the blockchain so everyone can rely on it as absolute fact.

The title of the video is “what if the Internet could not tell a lie”, but in fact what he is describing is a single source on the Internet telling us what is a lie and what isn’t – driven by Snopes.

There has been a massive purge of “alternative news” channels and videos on YouTube since the Progressives were defeated in the election by a huge margin. Facebook, GoogleYouTube, Twitter, Snopes and Reddit were all caught trying to silence conservative voices and stories, while promoting all sorts of things from cultural marxism to communism to child abuse to cannibalism.

Meanwhile, the Snopes founder spent all the company’s money on hookers and blow – and then hired the hookers to be fact-checkers and married one of them. You couldn’t make this shit up. Not only that but he just easily crowdsourced nearly a million bucks more, despite this abysmal track record of fraud allegations over the use of company funds for personal pleasures.

This is who Brian Behlendorf thinks we should use on the blockchain to determine “truth” once and for all? Yes, seriously, it is. Watch the video.

In other bizarro alt-media news, Alex Jones of InfoWars also married an escort…allegedly.

Who says any of these organizations should just be assigned the role of determining complex arguments, such as the JFK Assassination – where the CIA just “lost” an entire volume of their files on Lee Harvey Oswald, after years of stonewalling their release. Are we to believe the official conspiracy theory of 9/11, 19 hijackers with box cutter knives? The University of Alaska just completely debunked the official story about the collapse of Building 7, which was not hit by any plane – so what is true? The official government story, or the scientific conclusions? Why not record the case for and against any topic under debate, present the evidence for both sides, and let the people decide what they find most compelling.

Snopes, Google and Facebook do not deserve to become the arbiters of truth. What ever happened to Objective Truth, “truth is truth”?

There is only one truth, everything else is just opinion. Let the truth speak for itself, and if there are questions over truth or arguments of “alternative facts”, let’s get them ON THE RECORD too. Get all the evidence out, record the Grammar and the Rhetoric, let the people use Logic and decide for themselves. We need the pertinent facts and documents out there in the public domain. And then debate their existence, authenticity, or relevance.

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What we actually need is to use the blockchain to record truth and facts. Record all the stories around a topic – even the rumors – and let people expand on them or deny them with opinions and evidence. Like WikiPedia, but one that can’t be censored for political or other, more shadowy reasons. Bitcoin is not really suitable for something like this, Ethereum is better with its smart contracts capability, but both these blockchains are busy doing financial transactions. What is needed is links to an immutable data store like the Internet Archive. In some cases the amount of data around a topic (such as JFK, or Burning Man) will be very large. Other topics, such as disaster relief using the blockchain, are newer and easier to get one’s head around with less controversial content.

The point I agree with BB on is that decentralized, distributed ledger technology is the best hope we have to fight against censorship. Will the solution come from those deep within the Deep State? Or from We The People?

 

Prohibition, Jake Leg, Methanol & Jamaican Ginger: Adulterants 100 Years Ago

Report by Terry Gotham

Picture New York City, Christmas Eve night, Bellevue Hospital. 60 people hospitalized over the course of the evening, with another 23 hospitalized from drug poisoning within the next 48 hours. With 8 dead by the time the smoke cleared, it sounds like a news story you’ve heard every week this year coming out of some distraught community in Ohio or Connecticut or Georgia? It’s got to be a bad batch of fentanyl? Maybe some spiked heroin or morphine that no one saw coming. It was actually alcohol and the year was 1926. As the Chicago Tribune editorialized in 1927:

“Normally, no American government would engage in such business. … It is only in the curious fanaticism of Prohibition that any means, however barbarous, are considered justified.” Others, however, accused lawmakers opposed to the poisoning plan of being in cahoots with criminals and argued that bootleggers and their law-breaking alcoholic customers deserved no sympathy. “Must Uncle Sam guarantee safety first for souses?”
~The Chemist’s War (Deborah Blum, 2/19/2010 Slate.com)

Returning to the History of Addiction series this week, I’m going to be exploring one of the lesser known eras of adulterated drugs in world history, Prohibition-era America. While it’s widely known that alcohol was still available during Prohibition, we have a romanticized idea of what this was like, with the speakeasy culture, Al Capone and flappers dominating our vision of it. The reality of bathtub gin and moonshine had some dangerous facets that we don’t talk about, that even continue to this day in places like Russia. This ties directly to the continued prohibition/unaffordable nature of scheduled substances.

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