From the Tech Liberation Front:
Indeed, I think about all this every time I attend a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on tech policy and listen to lawmakers regale each other with stories about when they bought their first transistor radio or black-and-white television. Then, without missing a beat, they make jokes about not ever using the Internet or computers but that they have staffers or young family members who do and keep them informed. And yet, despite this stunning unfamiliarity with all things high-tech, they then move right on to pass reams of regulations governing the Internet and digital economy.
I have very much the same problems with people who laugh about their "computer illiteracy." Since every job I've had has encompassed some degree of technical support, I've run into that attitude a lot. Not every user needs to be an expert, but flaunting your inability to use a machine you depend on daily in the course of your work seems ridiculous. No one laughs about not being able to read, do they? But to see this type of behavior in lawmakers and corporate decision-makers? (Remember BB's story last week about the Universal CEO who basically said that no one in the record industry understands technology and they don't know what to do with it when it comes to music distribution?) By making a joke out of not understanding technology, the real problems of how to handle it go unsolved.