Jay Rockefeller: Internet Is Public Enemy No.1, it “should never have been invented”

According to the great-grandson John D. Rockefeller, nephew of banker David Rockefeller, and former Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller the internet represents a serious threat to national security. Rockefeller is not alone in this assessment. His belief that the internet is the “number one national hazard” to national security is shared by the former Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell and Obama’s current director Admiral Dennis C. Blair.

“It really almost makes you ask the question would it have been better if we had never invented the internet,” Rockefeller mused during the confirmation hearing of Gary Locke (see video), Obama’s choice for Commerce Secretary. He then cites a dubious figure of three million cyber “attacks” launched against the Department of Defense every day. “Everybody is attacked, anybody can do it. People say, well it’s China and Russia, but there could be some kid in Latvia doing the same thing.”
Jay Rockefeller’s comments reveal an astounding degree of ignorance – or if not ignorance, outright propaganda. Since the September 11, 2001, attacks the government has cranked up the fear quotient in regard to cyber attacks and so-called cyber terrorism, a virtually non-existent threat except in the minds security experts and politicians. In the years since the attacks, not one real instance of real cyberterrorism has been recorded.
“Cyberattacks on critical components of the national infrastructure are not uncommon, but they have not been conducted by terrorists and have not sought to inflict the kind of damage that would qualify as cyberterrorism,” writes Gabriel Weimann, author of Terror on the Internet. “Nuclear weapons and other sensitive military systems, as well as the computer systems of the CIA and FBI, are ‘air-gapped,’ making them inaccessible to outside hackers. Systems in the private sector tend to be less well protected, but they are far from defenseless, and nightmarish tales of their vulnerability tend to be largely apocryphal.”

“Psychological, political, and economic forces have combined to promote the fear of cyberterrorism,” Weimann continues. “From a psychological perspective, two of the greatest fears of modern time are combined in the term ‘cyberterrorism.’ The fear of random, violent victimization blends well with the distrust and outright fear of computer technology.”
“The sky is not falling, and cyber-weapons seem to be of limited value in attacking national power or intimidating citizens,” notes James Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Such a threat is overblown, Lewis explains. He notes that “a brief review suggests that while many computer networks remain very vulnerable to attack, few critical infrastructures are equally vulnerable.” In other words, Rockefeller’s example of a kid in Latvia with a laptop posing a serious “hazard” to national security is little more than sensationalistic propaganda.
So-called cyber terrorists are far less of a threat than government. China and Australia have recently imposed draconian censorship on internet freedom. Brazil, Denmark, Canada, Finland, Ireland , Italy, Israel, the United Kingdom, the United States, and many other countries also impose nominal censorship on internet freedom. Urgent calls to restrict the medium in various ways through legislation and government action have increased over the last few years (for more detail, see Internet Censorship: A Comparative Study).
However, the real threat to internet freedom is currently posed by IT and ISP corporations, not the government.

As Alex Jones explained last June, large corporate ISPs are now in the process of imposing bandwidth caps and routing traffic over their networks and blocking certain targeted websites. For instance, in 2005 AOL Time-Warner was caught blocking access to all of Jones’ flagship websites across the entire United States. Other instances of outright censorship include the UK ISP Tiscali blocking subscribers from reaching material on the 7/7 London bombings and Google’s continued and habitual censorship of 9/11 material and Alex Jones’ films on the ever-popular YouTube. There are many other instances as well.


Who is this asshole? Will somebody please f—-ing fire this dickhead.

Yes, the internet is bad. It is bad for all the creeps who’ve been sucking off the general populus since the concept of the ownership of property. And before anybody here pins me as a “communist” (though, actually, yes do I believe in interdependent free-trading communities and I abhore centralisation of power) , please read Rousseau’s “Social Contract” about the legitimate formulation of political order.

Sadly, my friends, the internet is the last bastion of democracy as we once understood it.


Filed under: Corporations, Humanity, Journalism, Media, North America, Politics, Technology, Web, World Affairs, ,

7 Responses

  1. Prof. Stephen Hawking says:

    Well, to give Sen Rockerfeller the benefit of the doubt, he actually says “It almost makes you ask the question would it have been better if the internet had never been invented . . . and that’s a stupid thing to say, but it has genuine consequences because it’s on the internet that the department of defense is attacked 3million times a day.”

    He says ‘it almost makes you ask the question’ amd he qualifies his comments with ‘and that’s a stupid thing to say’.

    I think his comments are actually well balanced. By no means is he all out condemning the internet per se. He’s expressing his concern.

    And, I for one believe the ‘3 million a day’ figure to be conservative.

    You have to realize that the term ‘attack’ does not necessarily mean a single hacker tapping away at a keyboard.

    Denial of service attacks use orchestrated networks of hundreds or even thousands of virus infected computers located all around the world. Ordinary PCs are turned into botnets that submit thousands of page requests per minute. Not hard to reach 3 million malicious page requests in a single day. And that’s just the most rudimentary form of attack.

    Any network engineer will tell you that this is a real and present danger to any computer system. A well targetted attack of many thousands of synchronous page requests brings down servers, whole networks. Add to this the social engineering aspect of the illicit acquision of network passwords, etc etc. and you have a real problem on your hands.

    Why would you refer to the senator as a ‘d1ck head’ for expressing his concern?!

  2. Prof. Stephen Hawking says:

    Apologies. I misquoted you.
    Your original comment stated:

    “Who is this asshole? Will somebody please f—-ing fire this dickhead.”

    I’m sure I remember reading something about “offensive, disrepectful comments will not be tolerated on radical films.” Hmmm.

  3. Ed says:

    (Jus’ for fun)

    The denial of basic human rights use orchestrated networks of hundreds or even thousands of highly trained experts in transportation and murder located all around the world. Ordinary people are turned into empty vessels that carry out thousands of orders resulting in the death of millions of innocent civilians every minute. Not hard to bomb 3 million women and children and hard working civilian men out of their homes in a single day. And that’s just the most rudimentary form of attack.

    Any military strategist will tell you that this is a real and present danger to any society that values morality and an ethical basis in basic Christian family values. A well targetted attack of many thousands of experts in demolition and murder brings down thriving cultures, whole civilisations. Add to this the social engineering aspect of the illicit acquision of ordinary Western people’s sense of perspective , etc etc. and you have a real problem on your hands.

    – The arguments for my, admittedly flippant and unfocused, remarks run wide, are many-headed, and go deep, deep, deep through multiple disciplines and perspectives. Sadly I don’t have the time or the money to fully explain it here. Please take the little jibe above in good humour.

    As regards my offensive remarks. Indeed. I did break my own rule there didn’t I. 400 lashes for me before bed.

    Wise men drink while poor men think, Professor.

  4. Barbara says:

    Of course he hates the Net. All of the Elite hate the fact that it is in the hands of the hoi polloi. They want it shut down or monitored and have many plans to curb this, one of the last freedoms allowed thinking creative people.

  5. Prof. Stephen Hawking says:

    With the greatest of respect, it could be suggested that “arguments that run wide, are many-headed, and go deep, deep, deep through multiple disciplines and perspectives”

    That lead to the following:

    “Who is this asshole? Will somebody please f—-ing fire this dickhead.”

    Are worth fuck all.

  6. Ed says:

    Sadly, in the truest sense of the word, you are editing my opinion for what would appear to be some egoistic personal gain. This is dreadfully tiresome.

    I suggest you Read Rouseeau’s ‘Social Contract’, read the rest of what I wrote (not just the first sentence), the accompanying text with the film excerpt (to give the clip valuable context), and end this childish tit-for-tat prattle as it is waste of my – but, ironically, most of all your – time on this good earth.

  7. Prof. Stephen Hawking says:

    You’re wrong on the charges of egoism and childish games. That’s your interpretation (which, incidentally, reveals more about you than it does me). I just call it as I see it. That’s all. You’re right about the waste-of-time though. You’re a lost cause.

    Fish don’t know that fish are wet. Pigs don’t know that pigs stink. Deluded people are unaware of their own delusion. You, my friend, are deluded. And, unreachable.
    Feeling angry? QED.

    Over and out.

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About me

I'm a Media and Communications graduate from Goldsmiths College, London, a Project Manager and Web Developer (C#, PHP). In my spare time I like to write fiction, music, and read current affairs.

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