|(5) "Equality and the Internet" - 07/16/99 by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.|
and the Internet (07/16/99)
[Writing about the so-called Digital Divide, Llewellyn Rockwell, Jr. debunks yet another myth of disparate impact. Mr. Rockwell writes, in part ...]
"Here's a test concerning your political philosophy:
First the facts, from Forrester Research, as reported in the Wall Street Journal: right now, 64 percent of Asian-American households are online, whereas only 34 percent of white households are on-line. That's a disparity of 30 points.
Now the test. Do you regard this as: (1) proof that Asians are privileged oppressors who need to be put in their place; (2) a grave crisis that needs to be remedied through legislation and redistribution; or (3) a point of trivial demographic interest with no political relevance whatsoever?
Surely No. 3 is the only answer that fits with good sense. There may be interesting reasons why Asians are more likely to be online, and there's nothing wrong with speculating. But the bottom line is that more individuals who are Asian have chosen to be online than individuals who are not Asian.
"... Why, then, has the political class thrown itself into a tizzy about equalizing access to the Internet? Why is Clinton running around the country warning of grave disparities in online access and promising to remedy them with government prodding of the private sector and technological central planning?
"... Egalitarians are driven by the sin of envy, which is institutionalized in the redistributionist state. This is the dastardly impulse to destroy what you do not or cannot have. Those who believe in the politics of envy, for example, don't care that the welfare state doesn't materially benefit the poor in the long run, so long as the rich are hurting from all the taxation.
"In the case of the Internet, we could achieve equality immediately by destroying all
computers. So long as we don't want to do that, inequality in access (as in everything)
will be a permanent feature. Does it ever occur to the Internet egalitarians that some
people might have better things to do than surf the web? Why should the priorities of the
techno-statist elite supercede those of regular people?" (WorldNetDaily
07/16/99 by Llewellen H. Rockwell, Jr.)
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