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The Digital Dog Ate Our Civil-Liberties Homework: “It’s Just the Way It Is”


#1

The Digital Dog Ate Our Civil-Liberties Homework: “It’s Just the Way It Is”

Norman Solomon

Of all the excuses ladled out for the Obama administration's shredding of the Fourth Amendment while assaulting press freedom and prosecuting “national security” whistleblowers, none is more pernicious than the claim that technology is responsible.

At first glance, the explanation might seem to make sense. After all, the capacities of digital tech have become truly awesome. It’s easy to finger “technology” as the driver of government policies, as if the president at the wheel has little choice but to follow the technological routes that have opened up for Big Brother.


#2

Which is to be master?

One thing I'm certain of is that the master ain't me. Nor is it gonna be...


#3

"Mistakes were made."

"The Intelligence was flawed."

"An arm came around the suspect..." (to later find him dead)

"No one could have predicted..." (attack on twin towers)

It's amazing, isn't it? For all this talk of bravery, courage, power, and "personal responsibility," those in positions of authority hide behind these passive frames. They lie.

Now it's blaming the technology... the car, rather than its navigator!


#4

Exactly. Technology has created opportunities for more surveillance and Obama and comp[any have shown no restraint or regard for law in using it. "Just the way it is" is paramount to saying that we should expect the government to use any means it can to snoop on us and the hell with our rights. It's for our own good, after all. Just trust us. We would never abuse our power ... blah, blah, blah.


#5

Y'beat me to it, Susan!


#6

That alleged reporter, Savage, knows little if he was serious in saying

But then he works for the NYT, so perhaps I should have expected his propagandistic nonsense.

The ruling class would have to ramp up to a whole new level of surveillance -- an increase of 2 orders of magnitude at least -- before hiding meaningful interactions would even become difficult.

Just because we appear to make contact with someone doesn't guarantee that our connection is with rather than through that person, nor does it guarantee that it's meaningful, nor that it can't be meaningful just once in a year of daily contacts.

Any spy worth the price of their cloak and dagger knows how to stay under the radar. Those that get caught are the dopes, the innocents, and the very, very unlucky.


#7

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


#8

Not quite sure how this universal surveillance issue can be relegated to being an unavoidable and unintentional by-product of technology, when how many Trillion Dollars have been taken from the taxes of the working class to create fantastically enormous building complexes and infrastructure, and hire a huge population of tech workers, to serve exactly, precisely this purpose.


#9

Do you remember the old T.V. show "The Outer Limits" where the unseen narrative voice says: "We control the vertical. We control the horizontal."

My point is that when a small group of corporate interests (which--as is the case in fascism--has fused with the government; or more accurately, as Catherine Austin Fitts puts it: the U.S. govt--via the labyrinth of lobbyists occupying Washington--has become a subsidiary OF the corporations) controls the media, their fixation and repetition of particular story lines and talking points establishes--as true--what they wish to have believed.

The importation of so many Nazi scientists, many of them using torture and trauma to turn the human mind into a blank state (in pursuit of the objective that would control peoples' minds) was not lost on those inside the alphabet agencies who WANT a world under their control. In other words, Mind Control now IS the norm. Like war, it's been woven so deeply into the culture and its mass media as to not be recognized for anything alien.

It's what's essentially on the menu.


#10

I was, of course, being 'ironic' in posing this question about the
obvious.I have adopted a general term for this mass brain-washing
through endless repetition of an agenda-driven message: 'cultural
hypnosis'. Of course, fortunately, not everyone is susceptible to the
application of 'hypnosis therapy'. Unfortunately, in the hands of
skilled professionals, hypnosis is generally highly effective.