Wednesday, June 12, 2013

In search of privacy anywhere in the world...

I'm just a normal American.  But I left that Land of Honey, Grace, and God Fearing Folk for a very clear set of reasons.  Grab a nice cold Trappist Triple (it's nearly summer after all and the Quad's are a little too heavy), and let's review my current top four reasons for leaving, shall we?

I happen to be righteously pissed off at the US and UK monied corporate interests for sending nation-state funded intellectual property and jobs to a former enemy, China.  Additionally, corporate "profits" are hidden off shore, out of reach of the IRS.  This, so the already rich can make feed their incredibly strong Greed Machine at an increasingly obscene rate.

I have come to be righteously confused by American incredibly stupid response to mass shootings.  After the events of Sandy Hook, rather than willingly putting down arms and doing what Australia did after a massacre,  the fine citizens of the USA went out to buy more guns.  Instead of understanding and realizing that fewer weapons leads to fewer deaths, people went out and stocked up.  Why?

I have also become righteously pissed off at the way citizens in the US readily give away hard won "freedoms" the moment they are frightened.  Even though the chance of any of them dying from a "terrorist" attack is eight times less than being shot and killed by a policeman, America has quickly given away rights granted under the US constitution.  Habeas corpus is a 1000 year old human right not longer granted to the citizens of the USA and is explained away as something that is needed to keep America "safe".

I am now righteously angry that a former constitutional law professor (Obama) would have the balls to support the Bush-era policies of spying on American citizens living on American soil.  One incredibly brave citizen has just sacrificed his own life to tell us just how extensive that spying is and has given us strong hints that the results of this spying has, in many cases, nothing to do with "keeping Americans safe."  Here are a few of the more chilling things Edward Snowden has said:
  • I believe that at this point in history, the greatest danger to our freedom and way of life comes from the reasonable fear of omniscient State powers kept in check by nothing more than policy documents
  • With this capability, the vast majority of human communications are automatically ingested without targeting. If I wanted to see your e-mails or your wife's phone, all I have to do is use intercepts. I can get your e-mails, passwords, phone records, credit cards.
  • ...they are intent on making every conversation and every form of behavior in the world known to them.
  • I believe that when [senator Ron] Wyden and [senator Mark] Udall asked about the scale of this, they [the NSA] said it did not have the tools to provide an answer. We do have the tools and I have maps showing where people have been scrutinized most. We collect more digital communications from America than we do from the Russians.
If the NSA/CIA system of surveillence did what it is being advertised to do, wouldn't events such as Columbine, Sandy Hook, Santa Monica be preventable?  Think about it.  Those were all "terrorist" attacks.  And don't narrowly define "terrorist" either.  Americans have just as much to fear from far-right Christians as they do far-right Muslims.

Just as how Americans responded to each and every mass shooting since the 1960's, people have responded opposite to their best interests in this case too.  They believe that if NSA/CIA spying "keeps Americans safe" from "terrorism", it's OK with them!  Too many times I've read where idiot citizens say things like "I have nothing to hide" without thinking through what any of the "unintended consequences" might be.

Funny enough, some people are buying Orwell's "1984".  Sales on Amazon are up 7000% over last week.  While it might be a little late to do anything about, at least some people are willing to read what it's like living in a society that tells itself it's "free", and yet is anything but.

Finished that fine Trappist Triple yet?  Good.  Now it's time to open another.  These are Dark Days of Understanding and we need all the help we can get.


  1. Pissed off for good reason! Kudos to you for being prepared, able and willing to migrate elsewhere.

    Regarding people buying more guns after Sandy Hook, ironically it was because they feared the gov't would make it harder to buy guns, so "get 'em while you can!". Not a word about making gun owners responsible for their guns, though.

    1. I think there's always a good reason to be pissed off. We just happened to his the Jackpot as the proverbial poop was hitting the fan. We knew ATT was given a pass on all that NSA snooping before we quit the US. Now this? Comes as no surprise. We'd suspected as much when Bush the Dumber set this latest series of Restrict Human Rights in America into motion.

      For his part in all this, Obama should be chased from office. Most "transparent" President ever? I think not. Particularly after _strengthening_ Bush-era baloney, like Obama's done.

      Interesting that we need to buy more guns before the Government makes them harder to buy. So much for that language in the Amendments to the Constitution that clearly stipulate "... a well formed militia..."

      LOL! Oh, you couldn't make this stuff up if you had to, could you?