Welcome 2011 (aka 1984)
Orwell’s 1984 is an unbelievable tale imagined in 1949 focusing on government surveillance and mind control. Since 9/11 Americans have followed the Orwellian path: trading liberty for the perception of safety. Like Sheep, there is no resistance stepping into body scanners, allowing our mothers, daughters, and wives submission to hands of questionable authority, and acceptance of cameras and data mining to predict actions. Our same ruling elite, like the “Inner Party” exempts itself from the rules and regulations put upon “We the People”.
My goal is not to pontificate doom and gloom, but raise awareness and challenge the status quo. I must wonder why a NFL football dominates television ratings when our society is collapsing around us. Much of the change thrust upon us was incrementally small and came slowly after 9/11. However, I believe there has been an acceleration of lost liberties in the last two years. For example: a pilot challenging TSA’s procedures last week had his home raided by Federal Authorities under administrative rules creating a warrantless search; TSA announced further silly rules scrutinizing Thermos bottles; passengers cannot take water through security as it may explode; Wired magazine detailed government collection and scrutiny of credit card and store loyalty card data; Google through StreetView and other data mining practices announced predictive behavioral searches; municipalities are investing in license plate readers to track all traffic in their communities; you cannot enter a store or public place without CCTV recording and forever storing your image; without warrants the NSA is listening to phone and email traffic; purchase of certain over-the-counter drugs requires logging your identity in a government database although no law is broken; Attorney General Eric Holder shared in an interview with Diane Sawyer last week American citizens require surveillance to stop homegrown terror; passage of Net Neutrality was the first step toward an ID requirement to access the web; and Janet Napolitano announced Wal-mart will install televisions nationwide to broadcast the “If you See Something, Say Something” campaign encouraging us to report on others.
I do not have confidence in the government, nor do I trust the government to maintain its integrity. By the government’s admission we need to question those who exercise First Amendment Rights, have certain political bumper stickers, belong to organizations like the NRA, and criticize the United Nations. As 2011 comes upon us I challenge you to watch the weekly announcements of new government “security” programs and ask, “Why?” Big Brother is watching you. – George Orwell.