Wednesday, November 9, 2011

America's self-defeating 'war on drugs' | Dan Gillmor

(88) The Guardian on Facebook:

Distressingly, the Obama White House seems determined to paint itself into a corner of prohibitionist law enforcement

The murky doings of the hacker group Anonymous took a remarkable turn in recent days. A Mexican drug cartel allegedly kidnapped an Anonymous member, and then, after the loosely organised hackers said they would reveal names of cartel personnel, released him with threats to kill the hacker's family if the names were revealed.

The affair, which played out in blogs and on Twitter, coincided with a week I spent in central Mexico, where I led several workshops for new-media creators. In conversations with a number of people during my visit, I got a clearer understanding of the fear that pervades Mexican society – an undercurrent that also combined despair and anger at the way the cartels have corrupted the country's institutions.

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