Tag Archives: Governement Surviellence

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Big Brother

Edward Snowden – Photo from PBS.org

The web article ‘Government Surveillance and Academic Thought Policing are Taking us to 1984′ by Art Carden [1], talks about progressive policies and their effect on the conservative half of our 2-party system. It isn’t framed that way, but that’s what it refers to. It’s framed as a critique of our modern-day society as seen through the lens of a perfect socialist dystopia set 33 years ago. He explores some of the preliminary results of the Sexual Revolution. It hints at the depths and pervasiveness of changing attitudes in institutes of higher learning – and the unforeseen psychological impact of those attitudes outside of that social circle.

It begins by drawing parallels between the Party’s incessant spying on its own citizens and the current surveillance practices of our government. With each page, Orson Welles envisions increasingly inventive ways to strip the privacy, dignity, and sanity from his imaginary citizens. Two-way cameras, government surveillance, and the torture of anyone who dares question the regime. If the reports released by Edward Snowden are to be believed [2], smartphones, Smart TV’s, and tablets are being regularly used as 2-way surveillance devices. If anyone remembers Abu Ghraib, then the idea of ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ being used on citizens and non-citizens alike going as far back as the Vietnam War [3] should come as little surprise.

And the data collected from the surveillance of said devices is actively archived by the NSA [4]. Look at that thoughtfully planned, perfectly benign tagline in the link: “Defending Our Nation. Securing the Citizens.” Gosh, doesn’t that inspire warm, cuddly thoughts? Programs like this only serve to increase our distrust of our fellow citizens, black, white, and brown. But where some might be prone to praising the initiative, others condemn it for the ethical implications of such a widespread devaluation of basic human privacy.   Complementing this racial division, exacerbating class divisions that have existed for most of human society, are the sexual and gender-based divisions that have seen increased media attention. The past 3 years have been rocked with campus sex-scandals: high-school students getting molested [5], college rapes [6], and more have created one of the most isolated generations of citizens in U.S. history. Add to that a decline in social skills due to technology [7], and it’s a wonder anyone ever finds time to consider social issues.

We are living in one of the lowest crime rate periods of time in our nation’s history [8]. But abuses of power and subsequent infringements of civil rights are more pervasive than ever. And that frightens me.

 

 

[1] https://www.learnliberty.org/blog/government-surveillance-and-academic-thought-policing-are-taking-us-to-1984/

[2] https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/wikileaks-says-it-has-obtained-trove-of-cia-hacking-tools/2017/03/07/c8c50c5c-0345-11e7-b1e9-a05d3c21f7cf_story.html?tid=a_inl&utm_term=.e3f3cf5e6f38

[3] http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2013/02/201322772747965573.html

[4] https://nsa.gov1.info/utah-data-center/

[5] http://ktla.com/2017/09/14/female-lakewood-high-school-teacher-accused-of-carrying-out-3-year-sexual-relationship-with-teen-student/