“Human brains have a “hyperactive agency-detector device”, seeing agents (spirits, gods and the like) in natural phenomena and random happenings. This is useful. There is little harm if you overreact to something that turns out not to exist. But underestimating a rustling in the undergrowth, which might conceal a predator, could be fatal, leading to evolutionary selection of a tendency to see agents everywhere.” – In the hands of an angry God

“The Panopticon is a thought experiment: a model prison meant to control a society of prisoners. But we are not prisoners. We are not shackled in cells, with no rights and no say in governance.

In our world, pleasure is not banned; it is encouraged and celebrated, albeit subsumed under the banner of consumption. Most of us do not live in fear of the state as we go about our daily lives. (There are notable exceptions: for example, poor communities of color and immigrants who suffer under “stop-and-frisk” and “show your papers” laws.)” – What tear gas taught me about Twitter and the NSA