The progress of totalitarianism in the USA

A number of articles this week have highlighted the extent to which the USA has become nothing more or less than a totalitarian state in terms of its attempts to snoop on and control its citizens.  This is, of course, entirely unconstitutional – but the powers that be have long since ignored the constitution, and consider it a dead letter.  It’s going to be difficult to convict them of their error . . . but convict them we must, one way or another.

Conservative HQ can be an overly partisan (and occasionally bitter) source of information, but sometimes its articles are very factual.  That’s the case with a four-part series entitled ’48 Alarming Facts That Tell Us America Has Become a Gigantic Prison’.  The series begins:

Edward Snowden is important because he added some detail and put a spotlight on a truth this blog has  been documenting for some time. That truth is this . . .

The U.S. government today is in possession of technology that tyrants of yesteryear would have salivated over.

This technology is quickly turning America into an electronic prison from which escape to freedom is nearly impossible (because the alternatives to America aren’t so good either).

Here’s what’s happening . . .

The U.S. government now tracks, monitors, records, and stores most of your activities and communications. You have no privacy anymore.   This means you must be very careful what you say, even what to think . . . because whatever you say, write, or even think can (and probably will) be used against you.

There’s more at the link.

The four parts of this extended article may be found at these links:

In another exposure of law enforcement overreach and paranoia, the FBI and the Department of Justice have issued ‘Suspicious Activity Reporting Flyers’ to 25 industries and business areas.  All 25 have been gathered and published by Public Intelligence.  Most of them urge their readers to:

Be part of the solution.

  • Require valid ID from all new customers.
  • Keep records of purchases.
  • Talk to customers, ask questions, and listen to and observe their responses.
  • Make note of suspicious statements, people, and/or vehicles.
  • If something seems wrong, notify law enforcement authorities.

My immediate response is that if a business unreasonably requires me to produce ID, I won’t be doing business with them at all.  What the hell business is it of theirs to identify me, except in situations where I’m buying materials that are legally controlled or restricted, such as firearms?  In the same way, if they want to ‘talk to me and ask questions’, my immediate response will be to tell them, in words of one syllable, that my business is none of their business.  If they don’t like that, tough – I’ll take my dollars elsewhere.

I urge you to read the FBI flyers for any industry or area of business in which you operate (click on their names in the list provided), in order to find out how Big Brother is trying to monitor you.  I further urge you to do everything in your power to frustrate, complicate, and mess up their monitoring.  To hell with the snoops!

Finally, Bruce Schneier outlines the only way in which public trust in the NSA can be re-established.  Here’s an excerpt from his article.

It’s time to start cleaning up this mess. We need a special prosecutor, one not tied to the military, the corporations complicit in these programs, or the current political leadership, whether Democrat or Republican. This prosecutor needs free rein to go through the NSA’s files and discover the full extent of what the agency is doing, as well as enough technical staff who have the capability to understand it. He needs the power to subpoena government officials and take their sworn testimony. He needs the ability to bring criminal indictments where appropriate. And, of course, he needs the requisite security clearance to see it all.

We also need something like South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, where both government and corporate employees can come forward and tell their stories about NSA eavesdropping without fear of reprisal.

Yes, this will overturn the paradigm of keeping everything the NSA does secret, but Snowden and the reporters he’s shared documents with have already done that. The secrets are going to come out, and the journalists doing the outing are not going to be sympathetic to the NSA. If the agency were smart, it’d realize that the best thing it could do would be to get ahead of the leaks.

The result needs to be a public report about the NSA’s abuses, detailed enough that public watchdog groups can be convinced that everything is known. Only then can our country go about cleaning up the mess: shutting down programs, reforming the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act system, and reforming surveillance law to make it absolutely clear that even the NSA cannot eavesdrop on Americans without a warrant.

Again, more at the link.

Folks, we dare not simply shrug and say, “Well, that’s the way it is.  There’s nothing we can do to stop it.  The rot has set in too far, and we’re stuck with it.”  That way lies tyranny.  If the faceless security bureaucrats have already eroded this much of our constitutional rights, liberties and freedoms, they won’t stop here.  They’ll continue until they control virtually every breath we take.

Remember Winston Churchill’s famous words:

  • Never give in — never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.
  • Still, if you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.

Words to live by, indeed – and to throw in the teeth of the security bureaucrats who would enslave us.


1 comment

  1. And anyone that comments on this thread will be tracked and added to the list. Of course, I'm already on so many lists that getting my name on one more would like not changing my target rankings any. "Hi, NSA! Have a good weekend?"

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