We should support defense technology transfer towards a peacetime technology-based economy, particularly new industrial applications and developments in the areas of advanced communications, alternative energy, non-toxic battery technology and waste management.
- Consolidation of the nuclear weapons complex should move toward alternative civilian technologies and non-proliferation work, not toward a new generation of nuclear weapon design and production.
- We must recognize the need for de-escalating the continuing arms race, and we strongly oppose putting nuclear weapons, lasers and other weapons in space in a new militarization policy that is in clear violation of international law. [See section F. Demilitarization and Exploration of Space in chapter I]
- Let us go forward with government and civilian space programs; research initiatives in sustainability science, environmental protection, ecological economics and transportation, appropriate technologies and technology transfer; environmental sampling and monitoring; systems testing; laser communications; and high speed computers.
- Let us devote a larger percentage of our nation’s research and development budget, both private and public, toward civilian use and away from military use. Let us address our chronic trade imbalance in this fashion—not by increasing exports of military weapons and technologies.
- We should oppose patenting or copyrighting life forms, algorithms, DNA, colors or commonly used words and phrases. We support broad interpretation and ultimate expansion of the Fair Use of copyrighted works. We support open source and copyleft models in order to promote the public interest and the spirit of copyright.
- We must call for a federal Technology Assessment Office to examine how technology fits with life on Earth, with our neighborhoods, and with the quality of our daily lives.
Advanced telecommunications technologies (many of which came originally from defense applications), such as fiber optics, broadband infrastructure, the Internet, and the World Wide Web hold great promise for education, decentralized economies, and local control of decision- making. We believe we must move toward decentralization in these efforts, carefully protecting our individual rights as we go forward.
- Advanced and high definition TV, digital communications, and wireless communications hold promise and challenge. For example, the public airwaves that will accommodate the new generation of telecommunications technology should not be free giveaways to media giants. An auction and built-in requirements that attach licenses to act in the public interest is needed. Technology provides tools: we must use these tools appropriately and ethically. [See section J. Free Speech and Media Reform in chapter II]
- Broadband Internet access should be open to bidding, not simply the current choice between cable or telephone company monopolies, where grassroots Internet service providers must merge or go out of business. Broad- band access should be a taxpayer-funded utility, like water and sewer, ending the “digital divide” that keeps low-income folks from access to the Internet.
The Internet is a commons, developed with public funds, and must insure freedom and equality of access. We should oppose Internet access tiered service controlled by an Internet service provider (ISP), with independent (not housed with the ISP) most costly and inaccessible. ISPs and advertisers should not be gate- keepers.
We must call for increased protection for user privacy and for accountability on the part of ISPs.
Open-source software is necessary to achieve personal, cultural, and organizational security in the face of technological threats brought by corporations and individual criminals.
- Government has a vital role in breaking up software monopolies, not so much by filing antitrust suits, but by buying nothing but open systems. The U.S. Government and the larger states are buyers large enough to influence the computer and software systems through their purchasing. It should be illegal for a government agency to create and store information vital to its operations in a format it doesn’t control. Governments should always consider storing information with open-source software and in-house staff instead of only commercial systems, vendors and software. One way to achieve this would be to add a virtual bid for in-house open source deployment whenever a software purchase goes out for bid.
- We should support protection of software (free or proprietary) by means of the copyright. We strongly oppose granting of software patents. Mathematical algorithms are discovered, not invented, by humans; therefore, they are not patentable. The overwhelming majority of software patents cover algorithms, and should never have been awarded, or they cover message formats of some kind, which are essentially arbitrary. Format patents only exist to restrain competition, and the harm falls disproportionately on programmers who work independently or for the smallest employers.
Nanotechnology—the science of manipulating matter at the molecular level—is poised to provide a new industrial revolution with vast social and environmental consequences. Like nuclear science and biotechnology, nanotechnology is being pursued largely outside of public debate, risking great harm and abuse in its use and application.
We must call for a halt to nanotechnology development until the following conditions are met:
- Development of full and open public debate about the implications of nanotechnology and the fusion of nanotech with biological, materials and information sciences.
- Development of democratic public control mechanisms to regulate the direction of nanotechnology research and development.
- Expanded research into the environmental and health consequences of exposure to nano-scale materials.
- Development of technology to contain and monitor nano-scale materials.
- Development of precautionary safety measures for the containment and control over nano-scale materials.
Source: Green Party