The Instigator
victork
Pro (for)
Losing
8 Points
The Contender
Kasrahalteth
Con (against)
Winning
36 Points

The Fedral govenment in control of the internet

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/17/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,375 times Debate No: 575
Debate Rounds (1)
Comments (2)
Votes (14)

 

victork

Pro

From influencing public opinion through new media to designing 'computer network attack' weapons, the US military is learning to fight an electronic war. 'Strategy should be based on the premise that the Department [of Defense] will 'fight the net' as it would an enemy weapons system.' The document recommends that the United States should seek the ability to 'provide maximum control of the entire electromagnetic spectrum'. US forces should be able to 'disrupt or destroy the full spectrum of globally emerging communications systems, sensors, and weapons systems'."
-- BBC article describing U.S. military plans to fight the Internet, 1/27/06

U.S. military document recently uncovered through the Freedom of Information Act reveals an "Information Operations Roadmap" in which plans are being made based on the premise that the military will view the Internet "as it would an enemy weapons system
Kasrahalteth

Con

First of all, I have to say that I'm a little confused as to what side of this you're actually arguing. You said "For" but your opening statement really doesn't say anything. It's just a quote from an article, which is made all the more confusing because the article itself is against the federal government taking control of the internet. So I'm left looking at the title and assuming that you're 'for' "the federal government in control of the internet" and if I am wrong in arguing against it, I'm sorry. But in my defense your opening statement was ambiguous at best.

I guess I'd start by pointing out that we don't exactly own the internet. It's called the World Wide Web for a reason, and it's certainly not ours to control. Other countries already want us to get our collective noses out of their own business and by attempting to take over something as important and wide-ranging as the internet, you must admit we're really asking for trouble.

I suppose your argument is that we want to break up terrorist cells or other such things with our new power. But if we really get the power to "disrupt or destroy the full spectrum of globally emerging communications systems, sensors, and weapons systems" as the article states, then we're going to make some powerful enemies. D'you think all the other developed countries in the world are going to sit back and relax while we figure out ways to destroy their weapons systems? It wouldn't be entirely unreasonable to suggest that people would be willing to start a third world war with us if we threatened them like that.

And the thing that scares me is the idea of influencing public opinion. China censors everything on the internet in its country. And how is that really working out for China? Right now, they're pretty infamous for sending people to jail for checking out the wrong websites. Sure, China's good for cheap labor but I don't think anyone here plans moving there any time soon. Partly because they're a police state bent on censoring everything their public sees. You'd be suggesting the same thing on a global scale by allowing the US to take over the internet. Which first of all, is a bad thing because of that bothersome constitutional amendment. Freedom of the press? The internet is one of the hugest forms of media now, and we'd be violating our own laws to be censoring it. And don't say we won't because if we're using it both to 'influence public opinion' and to 'provide maximum control of the entire electromagnetic spectrum' then there's no way that won't be abused. It's also a very bad thing because, again, the internet isn't ours to control. Who are we to take on the job of the world's police force, and potentially censor everything everyone sees? We're way out of line there, and people are going to resent us.

Not to mention the fact that there really is no way to fight a war with the internet. I know teenagers that have hacked government servers. It's not that difficult and if the government can't even protect what it has then how well is it going to with all that disrupting and destruction? It will be expensive and pointless because the one hugely redeeming quality of the internet is its plasticity. I mean, the internet is a collaboration of basically everyone with a computer in most developed countries. You can't keep something like that down, and by the time you create new programs, hackers will already have figured out ways to circumvent them. In fact, I risk rendering my above arguments completely pointless if I even begin to go into all the reasons why winning a war with the internet is completely impossible.

So in summary, by trying to take control of the internet, you'd really only waste money and make a lot of people angry. In the worst case, you'd actually get somewhere and someone would get the bright idea to neutralize the new threat posed by America and declare war on us. Kinda makes you think twice, huh?
Debate Round No. 1
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by KevinL75 9 years ago
KevinL75
Gotta love a one-round debate where one side barely defines an argument in the only round he or she gets.
Posted by wheelhouse3 9 years ago
wheelhouse3
That would then have the opportunity to turn into censorship and that is something I cannot support.
14 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by Mharman 1 week ago
Mharman
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Vote Placed by indianajones644 8 years ago
indianajones644
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Vote Placed by victork 9 years ago
victork
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Vote Placed by jurist24 9 years ago
jurist24
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Vote Placed by afeinberg 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by FreakyGothGirl6 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by silentrigger1285 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by CongressmanDrew 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by KevinL75 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by wheelhouse3 9 years ago
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