Angry Jesus writes:
"The Chicago Police Department is mis-applying epidemiological science (the study of entire populations) to target individuals in a real-life version of Minority Report. They have decided that it is a good idea to put people on a secret list based on a Big Data analysis of their social networks. But don't worry, it isn't racist or abusive because, Science!"
There is a very long and storied history of police abusing and oppressing people simply because they didn't fit in with society. Just ask any hippie or flower child.
Again, your description doesn't fit my experience at all. In the late 1970s I was a college student with a beard and hair down to my waist. Being a college student I was poor as a churchmouse and rolled my own cigarettes. I'd put tobacco in a baggie with papers and my then-wife and I would go to McDonald's for coffee (back then you could smoke anywhere, you could smoke in a college class or an airplane).
One morning we're smoking our roll your owns and drinking coffee and there's this guy spying on us, trying to look like he's not. A cop car pulled into the lot as we were leaving, and followed us. Halfway home he pulled us over. I asked what the problem was and he asked what I was smoking. "Carter-Hall", I said, which was the brand of tobacco and probably confused the poor cop because Carter was President. He asked me to step out of the car and I did.
"Tobacco," I said, and pulled out the baggie. He opened it, smelled it, made an annoyed fact towards McDonalds, apologized for pulling me over and turned around and went back to McDonalds, where I assume someone got an ass chewing.
I was a long haired hippy. Not once did a cop hassle me. All you have to do is be polite and they won't bother you. If you act surly, of course you're going to be hassled.
Big Data is never in our bests interests
I'll certainly agree with that.
They advertise to you. They tell you what to wear. They inform you of what society is, which is a vehicle in service to them.
Only if you kowtow. Their ads are ineffective on me, if you want to sell me something you're going to have to tell me why. When I buy a car I don't want excitement (notice that the way they drive in commercials would void the warrantee?), I want comfortable transportation. You're not going to sell me a steak by advertising the sizzle. You're only a victim of advertising if your mind is weak.
I'm not the one saying you are a criminal. The finest legal minds in the country are saying it.
And who would that be? I've seen ONE unknown lawyer write ONE book and a few articles. I read the articles and wasn't impressed. Who are these "finest legal minds"? Lawrence Lessig? The guys on the Supreme Court? New York County Lawyer? Name names.
If you are not doing your best to be a productive little member of society, which directly means to *consume*, and thereby provide money to flow back up to the 1%, you are treated like a faulty asset, or worse, an asset that is upsetting the rest.
I've never been a "good little consumer". My TV is 10 years old, my car is 12. My computers are built from used parts. If I go to McDonalds, I choose from the dollar menu. I'm using the cheapest phone service I can find ($40/month unlimited everything), no cable or satellite, and DSL for internet. I wear my clothes until they're rags. And as of tomorrow I will be producing nothing, I retire today.
Yet they leave me alone, despite my writing critically about them.
I was a long haired hippy. Not once did a cop hassle me.
You JUST told a story about being hassled by a cop and in the very next sentence you claim to have never been hassled by a cop.
You didn't do anything wrong but you were pulled over and forced to prove your innocence. By your own description, rolling a smoke in a smoking area, wasn't even suspicious and if you'd been clean-cut and wearing a suit it would have never happened to you. Intimidation isn't just about getting beat on and falsely imprisoned, it's about being reminded that "we're watching you." Just like what happened to you and just like the kid in the story,
It's weird that you've internalized what happened to you as being OK. Obviously it made an impact on you since you remember it 40 years later. Maybe your rationalization is a reaction to being reminded of your helplessness in the face of power, easier to live with if you believe it was normal and justified than to accept it for what it was.