Here in the U.S. it means kill someone. In China, something like it probably means freedom.
And we haven’t even started talking about mobile telephony.
The fact is that despite its great firewall, China is experiencing a great rise in freedom right now. The huge and growing volume of PCs, phones and Internet connections make it impossible for authorities to monitor it all. If viruses can spread, so can ideas. And to tyrants that’s just what freedom is – a virus.
It would be wise for U.S. authorities to get this through their heads. In trying to monitor our calls and all our PC use, the authorities say they’re just looking for a few needles in a haystack. But the haystack is too big, and the needles are increasingly well-hidden.
Rather than following the Chinese model, why not follow the British model and just use old-fashioned police work? It seems to get results.
Oh, and between hatred and love, between freedom and tyranny, which virus do you think is more virulent?
It is that question which lies behind today’s American political divide.