"The previous outbreak of political discussion was purely politics,
had nothing to do with SNA, and was not different in any meaningful
way from the political discussion you can get a thousand other places."
I disagree. The debate was about whether people with SNA skills should
assist the U.S. government in fighting terrorists. Those opposed argued,
among other reasons, that the military is approach is ill-conceived, that
the issue is not black and white, in the form of evil terrorists vs. good
Americans. Their response was, in other words, about politics (and perfectly
fair given the evolution of the debate). Wasserman made no effort to censor
them. Only when a couple of us took up that element of their argument did he
step in to quash the debate.
I don't think it's possible to talk about this issue without talking about
politics. I can see the merits of forbidding it, therefore, should most
people on the list wish to avoid such a discussion. I don't think we should
deceive ourselves, though, into thinking that the issue (assisting
governments in fighting terrorists) can be addressed without discussing the
questions that emerged in the first debate.
Charles G. Koch Foundation
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Andrew Hyatt [SMTP:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Thursday,August 15,2002 4:27 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: Social Network Research Partners
> Valdis <[log in to unmask]> writes:
> > This is not debate about politics!!! Two of the directions SNA is
> going today
> > includes military/intelligence apps and corporate decision-making. This
> > debate about the use of knowledge generated by smart people on this
> > Charles and Sam are not talking about politics in their posts, they
> > concerns about the use of this powerful technology that the SOCNET
> > has invented. I don't view their posts as SPAM!!!
> If you want to talk about SNA and it's relation to politics, I think
> that's cool, and can't imagine that others would think that's a
> problem. However, that kind of talk quickly degenerates into talking
> about politics itself, which has nothing to do with SNA, and therefore
> is not on topic.
> The previous outbreak of political discussion was purely politics, and
> had nothing to do with SNA, and was not different in any meaningful
> way from the political discussion you can get a thousand other places.
> Wasserman was right to quash it. Since his decision was being
> criticised in your previous post with:
> > > > Right On [as we used to say], Karl!
> > > >
> > > > Previous attempts at 'silence' on SOCNET:
> > > >
> > > > > "Please, take these and similar email notes elsewhere. This has
> nothing to do with SOCNET."
> I thought I would defend him, since he was certainly correct. That
> debate was about politics, and it was right to be silenced.