Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Freedom is Just Another Word...

FOR a computer program that disables the Internet for a specified period of time. The temptation, otherwise, is too great not to give your sustained attention to this or that important task. I mention this only to prod those who don’t have TVs but have laptops into reflecting on the incoherence of their "lifestyle." It goes without saying that relying on a technical solution to technical addiction is probably stupid.

Discussions - 11 Comments

Hmmmmm . . . it may be stupid, but that does not mean that it is not also useful. And I like the ironic name that it has . . . it does give one pause to consider the true meaning of freedom and the restraints that are sometimes required to achieve it.

Stupid is often useful...

Stupid is too often unavoidable for some of us.

I have been away for the Internet, though not from my laptop for nearly a week. Today I am free for this peculiar liberation from place that the Internet offers. Yet, I am choosing (God and my hygienic conscience knows why) to walk away from this pleasure to clean the refrigerator...now.

Susan McWilliams has some interesting reflections on "Freedom" over at Front Porch Republic.

Paul, that's the link!

The description of the program, especially the override (turn your computer off then on again) means that self-government is still required to play the Freedom game with yourself. The girl in the article could only overcome her inclination to that override with shame, which is not technical at all, but very human. I was thinking about that bit of the article while scrubbing some unknown gluey or rubber cement-like substance that must (incredibly enough) have edible once, from the bottom of the fridge yesterday and decided that since the solitary nature of the communion with the computer lessens shame, the question arose; why did the girl feel some special shame at the prospect of overriding the Freedom program (as inert as that gooey substance) when no one would know of her action, but herself? The program is an excuse to be ashamed of the waste of time, an extra nudge to virtuous productivity. I use the clock on the toolbar.

Thanks for the head's up; back to my nap.

I see my full comment didn't come through. It should read (in a self-deprecating vein): Thanks's for the head's up; back to my nap because I keep nodding off.

What if we consider paul seaton's independent suggestion of the McWilliams article as verification that it is interesting and thoughtful on the topic.

I couldn't help but observe a difference between Kate's hermeneutic of charity and ren's h. of suspicion vis-a-vis Peter Lawler. Thanks, Kate. (Of course there's a difference in targetability between Peter and Paul.) As it happens, I do like Susan McWilliams' rather serendiptious sense of the incidental, trendy & significance (beer v. bottled water; technology, freedom, and Freedom; etc.). It strikes me as very low-profile (even pre-comic book), but still illuminating, sociology.

My #9 was just the way I chose to consider at your contribution to the discussion, but you are welcome.

Sociology is much more pleasant when conversational and convivial. Otherwise it is deadly dull. Thank you both for pointing to the essay.

Don't mind ren. We probably need his pointed counterpoints.

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