[linux-elitists] Re: MCI boots send-safe (Register) -- adds a net of 11 more spam hosts

Karsten M. Self kmself@ix.netcom.com
Fri Mar 4 00:45:32 PST 2005

on Fri, Mar 04, 2005 at 01:51:52AM -0500, Bob Bernstein (rs@bernstein.providence.ri.us) wrote:
> On Wed, 2005-03-02 at 20:52 -0800, Karsten M. Self wrote:
> > Doesn't mean I'm anti-business, anti-government, or anti-religion.  But
> > I believe in a _balance_ of powers, a weighting on _merits_, and an
> > avoidance of _extremes_.  Large low-entropy pools are inherently
> > dangerous.
> Could you give an example of a such a pool, and how it became
> dangerous?  

Well, my standard examples have been:  large accumulations of gasoline,
110 story office towers (or two, located adjacently), nukes (weapons,
plants, or waste sites), and large data aggregations.

The office towers bit I added after 9/11.  Hrm, here's a quote from Dec

    Firm belief that large pools of low entropy are inherently
    dangerous: tall buildings, large crowds, nuclear power,
    comprehensive databases, absolute power, monopolies.  Seek the mean,
    keep energies and potentials balanced.  Bipolar constructs are
    inherently more stable than monopolar (hegemonical) ones, and
    multipolar (diversified) structures better than both.  That's not
    total anarchy -- nexuses of power or control within a larger pool
    are OK, and virtually requisite.

Should probably add universal networks and software monocultures to the
list as well.
> I ask because I'm not sure how I should understand the notion of entropy
> when it's applied beyond the realm of thermodynamics. Heck, I'm still
> struggling to understand it _inside_ that realm!

At best, it's sort of softball science.  "Low entropy" is just another
way of saying "high potential".  The more of it you stash in a single
location, the greater the possibility that potential is realized.  In a
social context it also becomes a target of opportunity ("moral hazard"
or "attractive nuisance" in economist lingo).

But it's also pretty useful in threat assessment and management.  


Karsten M. Self <kmself@ix.netcom.com>        http://kmself.home.netcom.com/
 What Part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?
    It seems harsh, but there is a limit. Do we really want to make
    contact with meat?
    - Terry Bisson, Meat Beings
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