Tag Archives: fear

Unsubscribe from Human Rights Abuse

Unsubscribe is an Amnesty International campaign asking you to ‘unsubscribe’ from the human rights abuses undertaken around the world in your name. Illegal detention and torture are just two of the acts that are common place in the so-called ‘War on Terror’, and guilty or not, people deserve better treatment than what they currently get in (illegal) prisons around the world.

To raise awareness of this campaign, Amnesty produced two excruciatingly powerful films showing, for real, the CIA-endorsed torture techniques enhanced interrogation procedures currently used around the world on prisoners who are yet to face a trial (i.e. in the eyes of the law, they are still innocent)*.

Waiting for the Guards depicts the horror of Stress Positions, held for a measly six hours.

The Stuff of Life shows us – in a real and unambiguous way – that ‘waterboarding’ is torture, not an interrogation technique. (Currently only available on the campaign’s main page.)

Whether or not you agree with the politics (although it’s difficult not to), these films are worth a watch – they are exquisitely directed and produced. The making of clip for ‘The Stuff of Life’ is also worth a watch.

* Only 1 in 10 people at Guantanamo are expected to face charges (and a court) – the rest will be set free without charge.

Overestimating Threats Against Children

Permitted WanderingsBruce Schneier recently wrote about the MySpace ‘safeguards’ being put in place to protect minors. His very succinct closing comments are a must-read.

…there isn’t really any problem with child predators — just a tiny handful of highly publicized stories — on MySpace. It’s just security theatre against a movie-plot threat. But we humans have a well-established cognitive bias that overestimates threats against our children, so it all makes sense.

To the right is a thumbnail of a picture showing the allowed wanderings of the children in one family through recent generations. It’s a fascinating comparison.

Thanks for the image, Carl (originally from the Daily Mail)

The Fear Hierarchy

Jan Pettit’s list of fears, ranked from childhood through parenthood. I’m currently somewhere between 13 and 17:

13. Fear of selling out
Deserting dreams.
Embracing capitalism.

14. Fear of the dark (continued)
Parking lots at night.
Deserted streets at night.
Apartments at night.
Houses at night.
Bedrooms at night.

15. Fear of rejection (continued)
By lovers.
By bosses.
By friends.

16. Fear of being unloved

17. Fear of being unlovable

Tragedies ‘Warping Government Policy’

Good to see someone in power and in the public eye stating this for the record.

Government policy is often badly formed because it is drawn up in response to tragedies and problems, the Government’s new head of risk management has said (Sam Coates writes).

Rick Haythornthwaite, head of the Risk and Regulation Advisory Council, said that policy was often affected by pressure from an aggressive media and a confrontational Parliament. “We have got to deal with some of the systemic flaws in policy-making within Whitehall,” he said.

He told The Politics Show on BBC One that calls to protect the public sapped self-reliance, resilience and the spirit of adventure. Some risk could be a very good thing, he said.

via The Magistrate’s Blog