National Insecurity

The State is meant to serve the People.  This is hardly true in many places in the world, and in America a revolution was fought to make it possible for the State to actually serve the People.  Such a laudable goal is not going well here, however, not at all.

History provides many lessons.  Philosophers and political thinkers have warned us, such as: George Santayana: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

After 9/11, the intelligence institutions of the American government grew at an alarming rate - becoming over ten times their previous size and budgets..  Millions of folks now are authorized to know so-called top-secrets, many of them private contractors.  The NSA monitors all of our electronic communications, has the biggest and baddest super-computers, and still can’t discover or stop two people from murdering over a dozen in San Bernardino (and now Orlando).  Meanwhile the FBI, and the DOD, sought to force Apple to give them a pass key, with the false "promise": "We'll only us it once".   Does anyone really believe that?  Edward Snowden, by the way, says that NSA can probably open the phone, suggesting this tactic is part of a long range plan to reduce our privacy.

The after-effect examinations of 9/11 revealed: We knew some of these folks were in America, but the CIA would not share that information with the FBI.  This was because the CIA wanted to conduct operations in America (turn the two identified terrorists into giving up higher ups), an action the law forbids the CIA to do.  The CIA is not to conduct operations inside the United States.   Only the FBI.   As a consequence of this conscious failure to follow the law, nearly 3000 people died, and two wars were started, one of which is still ongoing.

National Security people lie to Congress.   James Clapper, now Director of  National Intelligence, lied to a congressional committee when he was asked whether the NSA was spying on Americans.  He said no, and to this day insists he was misunderstood.  Lying to Congress is a felony, and he ought to have been charged, tried and now be in jail.  Yet he continues to appear before Congress, and makes all kinds of statements about various risks.  He is not to be believed, but policy makers still follow his lead.

Such questions arose because of the revelations of Edward Snowden, in which he exposed NSA activity, and not only their general illegal and unwarranted intrusions into the private lives of Americans, but also the fact that individual people in the NSA used those secret gathering tools for private purposes (such as checking up on their wives or looking into the lives of celebrities).  Snowden now has to hide out, and can’t come home because our “government” can’t be trusted to keep promises.

Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning remains in jail, sentenced to 35 years, for leaking all manner of documents, to WikiLeaks, revealing the duplicity of our government, particularly the State Department.

WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, remains hiding in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, having been granted asylum.  Movies have been made about Assange ("the Fifth Estate"), and Snowden ("Citizen Four").

The keepers of secrets want to call these people traitors, when in fact they are heroes in the War between the overreaching security apparatus of the State and the American People.

What does a tyranny look like before it takes over every aspect of our existence as Americans?

A fascist government is defined as a collusion between business interests, and a government.  Right now this is only just being recognized in its embryonic form in America, as an oligarchy.  It is not likely to stay an oligarchy long.  A basically unknown elite dominates politics, and hides its worst crimes through the ability of its supporters, inside the government, to classify as secret anything they want to hide from the American People.  They demand absolute privacy for themselves, while at the same time insisting that the dangers of terrorism, using the magic words “national security”, are to allow them to know all details of our private lives. 

The people have been resisting, and one of the ways this has unfolded is in technology where various smart phone makers have made grade A encryption a selling point.  People in the tech industry have for years been urging people to encrypt as much as possible, and with advances in this art it is possible to hide from the government as much as the government hides from us.

Many in the government don’t like this.  They want their secrets kept, and ours revealed.   They are not our friends, and they really don’t care to serve us.

The government has justified intrusions into our lives because these will allegedly protect us from future terrorist attacks.  This scare tactic is a fantasy.  In this age the government cannot save us from all the crazy folks out there, whatever their religious affiliation, or mental instability.  The world cannot be made perfectly safe, and we are foolish to require it, or blame the government for it’s absence.  Gun deaths, car deaths, alcohol and drug deaths, gang war deaths, pretend ISIS believer deaths - death is part of life, and promises by politicians to save us are really just so much hot air.

The sad fact is the intelligence services are lazy, and want to use electronic means rather than the more skilled (but difficult) ways  of gathering intelligence through human resources.  They want quick and easy, and our civil rights can be damned.  They like to sit at desks, and play with computers, instead of face danger in the field.   Already military drones ride the skies in America.

We need, instead, the truth.  We need to be told that the “security apparatus” cannot stop all dangers, and we need to force ourselves to stop believing it can.  In a way, we too are intellectually lazy. We refuse to see the dangers, or acknowledge government intrusions that are everywhere. No-fly lists, long lines at airports, internal security check points requiring picture IDs to just vote - all this is a slippery slope we are already traveling down.  It is known that Homeland Security (an oxymoron) has plans to make internal check points at all places of public transportation, such as bus, subway, and train stations.  A national ID is being demanded in Congress.   How soon will it be before everyone has to carry “papers”, and our militarized police can stop anyone anytime, and require we present the same - to show we have a right to be in our home towns and to travel freely.  Our fears are being used to manipulated us.  Our leaders are dishonest (as the whistle blowers show again and again). 

Large corporations are allowed all kinds of freedoms from restraint: to ruin our environment,  pollute our air and water, degrade the food supply, sell us shoddy goods, bilk us with high interest loans, ... a long long list of ways the government serves itself, and its cronies, at our expense.

Government has not earned our trust.  It has, instead, earned our mistrust.  We must resist, or our children’s children’s lives will come to live in a fascist hell.  For ideas about how to resist, see: The Grandmother War: