Smari McCarthy on freedom

From a great resource on P2P infrastructure, linked by @sleslie:

Freedom requires infrastructure.

A man who has no tools to acquire his necessities of life is a slave to his necessities. Given those tools, he becomes a slave to the labour required to fruitfully use them. Only by transcending each difficulty as it comes, in a process not dissimilar to metasystem transitions, can the individual achieve freedom.

Similarly, if at any point the individual becomes removed from the infrastructure that allows him any of the previous metasystem transitions, then he becomes a slave to those who control that infrastructure.

  • Smari McCarthy, FCF Discussion, February 2011

When we are using an endless list of provided infrastructure, magical clouds, startup services, and things we can't possibly have any individual control over, how is our freedom impaired?


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