07 Mar Sunstein calls for "cognitive infiltration" of dissident groups
Cass Sunstein, drunk with his little thimbleful of power he got by being given a job in the Obama administration is really letting his statist colors show through. Sunstein takes a page out of the Bush administration’s playbook and suggests that the government should engage in “cognitive infiltration” of disfavored political groups. (source)
Cass Sunstein, a Harvard law professor, co-wrote an academic article entitled “Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures,” in which he argued that the government should stealthily infiltrate groups that pose alternative theories on historical events via “chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine” those groups.
As head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Sunstein is in charge of “overseeing policies relating to privacy, information quality, and statistical programs,” according to the White House Web site.
Sunstein’s article, published in the Journal of Political Philosphy in 2008 and recently uncovered by blogger Marc Estrin, states that “our primary claim is that conspiracy theories typically stem not from irrationality or mental illness of any kind but from a ‘crippled epistemology,’ in the form of a sharply limited number of (relevant) informational sources.”
By “crippled epistemology” Sunstein means that people who believe in conspiracy theories have a limited number of sources of information that they trust. Therefore, Sunstein argued in the article, it would not work to simply refute the conspiracy theories in public — the very sources that conspiracy theorists believe would have to be infiltrated. (source)
When the Bush administration infiltrated anti war groups, it did so merely to gather information about the people in those groups. When word of that hit the streets, the Left freaked the fuck out — as it should have. Where the hell are these free speech advocates today?
Cass Sunstein — one more reason that I will not be donating to the Obama re-election campaign, nor will I be voting for him in 2012. CHANGE does not mean replacing stupid petty fascists with simply intelligent petty fascists.
H/T: Dillsnap Cogitations