The Waking Nightmare: A Chilling Orwellian Dystopia

RINF Alternative News editorial

When the National Security Agency’s disclosures became known to the public – thanks to Edward Snowden – most people realized that privacy means absolutely nothing.

The governments’ capabilities regarding mass surveillance is jaw dropping and so is their complexity. If you toss in a controlling governance and financial catastrophe, the combined effect is the chilling Orwellian dystopia we see today.

A Look At Greek’s Surveillance and Wiretapping

The figures from the Greek Statistics Agency details – in depth – the scale of the country’s surveillance and wiretapping for the past five years (ever since the beginning of the economic crisis in 2008). Statistics show the country’s wiretaps have increased nearly 1,050 percent during this timeframe.

And, in 2008, the country attained two superbugs that allow Greece’s counter-terrorism and secret police units to listen in on the conversations of its countrymen on a scale that’s unprecedented.

As it stands currently, Internet service providers are not being forced to follow the security standards, meaning browsing histories and emails can be used… all in the name of national security.

One doesn’t have to speculate too hard on who it is the Greek government is they want to “spy” on: governments are ardent to link squatters, anarchists and activists to terrorist groups, property damage and bank robberies. The best way, countries have claimed, is listening in on the private conversations of the whole country.

US government using license plates to track movements of millions

Eric London

A report issued by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on Wednesday details an immense operation through which nearly 1 billion license plate records of hundreds of millions of drivers are tracked and huge databases are amassed, providing the American government with access to the history and recent whereabouts of the majority of the US population.

For years, a network of federal security agencies, local police departments and private companies have been using automatic license plate readers on police cruisers, in parking lots, at traffic intersections—even through smartphone apps—to photograph cars and their drivers and to record license plate numbers with the matching time, date and location.

“More and more cameras, longer retention periods, and widespread sharing allow law enforcement agents to assemble the individual puzzle pieces of where we have been over time into a single, high-resolution image of our lives,” the report says.

“The systems can also plot all vehicles at a particular location, such as the location where a crime—or a political protest—took place” through a procedure called “geofencing,” whereby “law enforcement or private companies can construct a virtual fence around a designated geographical area, to identify each vehicle entering that space.”

The use of this technology for such authoritarian procedures gives the lie to the claims of the government and security apparatus that the purpose of the license-tracking program is to stop crime.

Stop Doing the Vicious Work of the Ruling Class

Arthur Silber

Chris Floyd: All Systems Go: The Core of the Acquittal - The acquittal of George Zimmerman for his killing of Trayvon Martin has already sparked a torrent of fervid commentary -- millions of words -- and will no doubt produce many millions more in the days and weeks to come. But good sense and insight have been near-impossible to find in the roiling surges of this tsunami. One place where you can find these rare commodities is -- as you might expect -- Arthur Silber's blog. Silber has posted a powerful essay on the case and its implications, extending and deepening a likewise excellent piece by Ta-Nehisi Coates in The Atlantic, which Silber builds upon to striking effect. You should read the whole piece -- read the whole of both pieces -- but be prepared for some counter-intuitive conclusions, the chief of which is this: in the Trayvon Martin case, the system did not fail; the system worked, it did what it was supposed to do. The problem is that what it is supposed to do is to maintain and replicate the brutal, violent and, above all, dehumanizing injustice encoded in the core of the national culture. Trayvon Martin's life was broken on the hard, metallic spikes of this core; an unspeakable personal loss. But the travesty was not the case itself -- an inevitably ambiguous affair (an unwitnessed encounter between two men, one of them left dead) hobbled with a daunting burden of legal proof required to produce a guilty verdict. No, the real travesty is the system that produced the volatile circumstances of that fateful night, and all of the seething, hateful, fearful, alienating currents that lay behind the encounter. But read the eloquent insights of Silber and Coates for more.

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