Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Our Defunct Fourth Amendment, Part 2

Have you noticed where all the lamestream media attention is going on this NSA snooping story? The inevitable villain, Edward Snowden, the spook contractor with a conscience, has become half the story. Boehner called him a "traitor." Mitch McConnell is calling for his blood. The Justice Department is after him, and the majority of the country thinks he's a criminal. The other half is a large discussion about the merits of the policy. Is it really in our best interest as a nation to have the National Security Agency recording and keeping terabytes of metadata on every American using one of the major telephone companies to make calls? I submit that both of these issues are bogus. Completely. The real issue is secrecy. All the things that the security apparatus of this country is doing in the dark, out of sight and purview of the American people.

What's really the problem the NSA and the rest of the federal government has with Snowden? You don't think it's that these two NSA programs--the phone listening and PRISM--that are the issue, do you? As if the terrorists aren't aware of what the U.S. is doing to combat them? You think anybody with half a brain can't figure out that the U.S. is engaged in electronic snooping to some degree? You think Snowden let some kind of really gigantic cat out of the bag when he went public? Are you kidding me? No, brothers and sisters, the real sin is that Snowden told the whole population of America what was going on. He told the people who are being snooped on, who are paying for all of it, and who were not consulted about this program that wasn't even debated in their hearing. That's the problem. NSA got caught treating every American citizen as a potential enemy. If these programs are so good for the country, if they're protecting everybody, then why the hell are they secret? Why are they locked away under layers of classification.

So don't let all this smoke screen jabber about Snowden and all the other peripheral issues distract you. The issue is SECRECY and how it makes a mockery of Obama's promises of transparency. Things are more Orwellian under him than George W. Bush. The issue is the creeping massive power accruing to the police and security agencies of the government.

I heard today on NPR that George Orwell's 1984 is and has been the best selling book on Amazon since this spying on Americans story broke. Don't doubt it. 

This CNet story explains all about PRISM. Wikipedia already has a pretty expansive article on Snowden here.
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