If the broken computer that currently serves as Australia’s Attorney General were capable of expressing any real emotion, it would be most upset at the news that the courts have recently subverted its quest to deport/imprison at will — without public examination of the evidence, or any form of political accountability — those deemed to be enemies of the state (‘national security risk’ is the polite term used by technocrats). Justice Ross Sundberg of the Australian Federal Court last Thursday (November 2) granted three men — (deported) US political activist Scott Parkin and Iraqi ‘asylum seekers’ / concentration camp inmates Mohammad Sagar and Muhammad Faisal — access to ASIO assessments deeming them security risks, the three applying to the court for access to the ASIO documents after the Federal Government refused to release them. According to the Herald Sun “In his judgment, Justice Sundberg said he accepted the men’s argument that they needed access to the ASIO documents for their case to prove they were not national security risks”. Kinda important material, really, given that Parkin’s forced deportation from Australia last year and Sagar and Faisal’s continuing imprisonment is based on their designation by ASIO as constituting ‘risks’ to ‘national security’.
As a result of Justice Sundberg’s ruling, Parkin may yet return to Australia (‘Deportee wants to return’, Jane Holroyd and Peter Gregory, The Age, November 3). Further:
He said the court’s decision to grant his co-claimants access to ASIO documents which prevented them from being granted visas, was more important.
“I’m especially excited that (they) who have been in detention for over five years now, also have an opportunity where they may be granted freedom and that’s actually something that’s much more important to me than just me knowing the truth and having my name cleared.”
Whether or not Burns will oppose the ruling is yet to be announced. Chances are good that he will.
This new type of [person]… turns [their] interest away from life, persons, nature, ideas — in short from everything that is alive; [s/he] transforms all life into things, including [themselves] and the manifestations of [their] human faculties of reasoning, seeing, hearing, tasting, loving. Sexuality becomes a technical skill; …feelings are flattened and sometimes substituted for by sentimentality; joy, the expression of intense aliveness, is replaced by “fun” or excitement; and whatever love and tenderness [humanity] has is directed toward machines and gadgets. The world becomes a sum of lifeless artifacts; from synthetic food to synthetic organs, the whole [person] becomes part of the total machinery that [s/he] controls and is simultaneously controlled by. [S/he] has no plan, no goal for life, except doing what the logic of technique determines [them] to do. [S/he] aspires to make robots as one of the greatest achievements of [their] technical mind, and some specialists assure us that the robot will hardly be distinguished from living [persons]. This achievement will not seem so astonishing when [humanity itself] is hardly distinguishable from a robot.
The world of life has become a world of “no-life”; persons have becomes “non-persons”, a world of death.
–Erich Fromm, The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness, 1974