Tennessee Father murders couple after they 'de-friend' his daughter on Facebook.

Social networking? My ass!

It is no secret that I consider most of these new-fangled 'Social Networking' thingamabobs to be little more than a harbinger of the Apocalypse. I'd wager there's probably been more people beaten, robbed, raped, maimed, or killed, due to this 'revolution in social communications' than have been similarly snuffed by all the Islamofascist Terrorists combined.

One can see the prevalence of the Internet in the slow-but-steady decay of civil society every day:

Children can no longer write coherent sentences for all the Internet shorthand.

Facebook and other sites have become the weapon of choice for cowardly bullies, pedophiles, and criminals. There have probably been more women violated because of Craig's List than have been roofied and taken to some secluded spot by the worst predatory denizens of the worst singles bars.

Thieves routinely use these services to perform a sort of reconnaissance, scouting the Web for the choicest morsels to steal, the perfect victims who won't put up much of a struggle, or those so lonely that they'll invite a complete stranger into their homes just for the sake of company.

How many flash mobs are organized online to disrupt public events, or to flood a store with scores of would-be shoplifters?

How many videos of kids beating the snot out of one another -- battles often arranged, encouraged, and fucking filmed by their parents -- have you seen on YouTube in the last five years?

How many teenage girls make themselves potential victims by posting compromising pictures on their homepage? How many reputations are destroyed by those hiding behind the thin cover of anonymity (they think) provided by the 'net?

And now Facebook may be the motivating factor in a double murder?

Bet this doesn't do a damned thing to slow down that whole Facebook IPO thingy, right? Can't let something as trifling as a double murder stand in the way of an easy $5 billion or so.

The world is indeed going to hell in a handbasket, and the Internet has served as an accelerant. What was once hailed as a godsend for the world is now a dismal thing; people would rather live in alternate realities than this one (and who can blame them?), people live double lives shielded by a false sense of anonymity, and will do and say all sorts of things online that they would never dream of doing in real life. People – real people, not the virtual things in Farmville or World of Warcraft – are being hurt all the time by this supposed blessing of technology .

The Greatest Means of Communication Evah! Is no such thing, mostly because it has been reformulated to appeal to the lowest, common denominator, simplified to the point where even the dumbest, most vicious, petty, vainglorious and dangerous amongst us wields a power far in excess of their natural abilities, or capacities. We have done great damage to our persons and lives as we have voluntarily (and often without thinking about it) destroyed any sense of privacy we have in our data-base-obsessed world.

Yeah, I know, you shouldn’t condemn a technology just because some idiot uses it to do bad, but for Christ’s sake, to murder people for so trivial a thing?

When I was an 18-year old computer operator, on my first job, I recall an IBM sales rep or something entering a conference room with a great big box on a trolley. It was an IBM AT or XT (I can’t recall), and I remember the man saying that this device was going to revolutionize the world -- but only in the hands of highly-trained professional.

Bill Gates and Steve Jobs made a mockery of that statement.

But in retrospect, it would have been impossible for that man in 1985 to imagine the sort of world we live in today. He took it as axiomatic that technology, used responsibly, was a positive boon to Mankind. If he was guilty of anything (other than being an arrogant prick) it was of simple naivete. Now that I remember that sales meeting, I begin to believe that perhaps that man was right; this technology should have been reserved for those trained in it’s proper use and the ethical responsibilities that came with it.

Because the greater mass of people is simply too stupid to act responsibly, even in their own self-interest.

It was given to the Chimps, and now they kill each other over it. "Ape has Killed Ape", so to speak, because of an electronic insult that carried over from a virtual world to the real one.

We’re the sheep that inhabit Farmville, and we’re leading ourselves to the slaughter.

About the Writer

From race relations to politics to issues dealing with human sexual behavior, Matthew will make you either love him or hate him. Mostly hate him. That's why we love him. He is the Chief-Lunatic-in-Residence at www.lunaticsasylum.blogspot.com where the full brunt of his force is unleashed. Reach him on Twitter at @excelsior502 and Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/matt.noto.12