Tuesday, May 14, 2013

How to dial back the national security state? ... by gimleteye

The Associated Press is the nation's most important news feed. It now appears that AP private and work cell phone conversations were secretly taped by the national security state, based on suspicions of a leak to the AP of an important counter-terrorism operation.

From available reports, the effort involved data screening of news reporters' phone calls. It appears to be no different than data mining exercises applied to known or suspected terrorists.

These days there is no bright line separating legal from illegal surveillance of citizens by the state. It is all according to "deciders" who control data-gathering technologies. Not even elections are safe.

It is hard to be calm, along this line.  The mind races. While we are driven to distraction with every form of digital interaction, a gigantic national security state surrounds us.

On the one hand,  Congress can't even agree to back down the TSA from its air passenger screening criteria. On the other hand, TV shows like HBO "Veep" show us willing to laugh at excesses of power filtered through comedy. Veep's most poignant story line is the competition among senior aides to be closest to the president. This fight has been won by his pollster; a data-driven character whose worth is weighed by a comedic deficit of emotion or empathy. ... funny and not.

Of today's raging controversies, what happened to the AP news reporters and editors is the most chilling.


Anonymous said...

People seem so focused on the 2nd Amendment and are forgetting that there are many others being eroded.

Anonymous said...

There is not enough push-back. Few are willing to transcend conformity and personally engage in the struggle. The young ones seem to accept the intellectual incoherence of state control, and appear comfortable with the dubious premise that things will work out and get better. Or let others do the heavy-lifting and I will ride off of their work. The old warriors are tired, have many scars from years of battle, and some are still struggling to survive. If we don't fight, we get what we deserve. It is our watch. . .

Anonymous said...

The same hypocrites who have no problems with allowing anybody to own guns are the same one's who are supportive of the Patriot Act and profiling.