Thursday, 2011 February 3, 08:47 — language, politics, religion

try this analogy on for size

An anarchist who uses the Internet is as hypocritical as a Protestant who uses the Latin alphabet.

Later: Too obscure? That’s never happened before.

We’re sometimes taunted with “and yet you use the Internet, which came from a government research project, nyah nyah.” We can reply that the private/voluntary sector would inevitably have developed something of the sort, if not for active discouragement by states (communications was a state monopoly in many places, and largely a regulatory monopoly here until 198x). Statists say, “Phooey, anyone can play what-if with no evidence.”

So, let’s consider the Latin alphabet, which remained standard for speakers of Romance, Germanic, Celtic, Hungarian and West Slavic over a thousand years after the fall of the Western Roman Empire — thanks to the Roman Church. That there would be no inter-network protocol without DARPA is about as credible as to suppose that Europe would be illiterate without the Papacy.

(More likely, Europe would have a dozen incompatible alphabets, like India, rather than three.)

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