Just three random links which illustrate some of the bizarre things going on in our nation under the name of National Security.
An article about a student photography project. (It’s long. Read the whole thing anyway.)
Passenger arrested for carrying a DVD of anti-american material, or, as they call it, suspicious materials.
And an article about how post-outage reports are a threat to national security.
I’m increasingly baffled by the notion that we’re more secure if we’re kept in ignorance. This “closed source” approach to governance is completely opposite to the way that our government was created to work. Something about a government of the people, by the people, and *ahem* for the people.
I’ve complained about this before – the absurd notion that government must be conducted in secrecy. How, I ask, can one have a government of the people if the people are routinely kept in the dark?
I am getting really fed up with the press telling us to be extra vigilant on one day or another, due to unspecified threats that they can’t tell us about. I am confident that we would be more vigilent, and less terrorized, if we were simply made aware of what threats were being made, and what was being done to counteract them. But, instead, the Feds Who Watch Over Us tell us that there were threats, and that we should be afraid, but not what those threats were. The consequence is that people either panic, or complete disregard anything that these folks say. Personally, I think that they are self-serving morons fabricating threats as a means to preserve their job securrity. I have absolutely no confidence that they know anything at all.
Really, who is served by keeping these things secret? Presumably the terrorists who made the threats already know about them, so it’s not like we’d be revealing important information. So, by keeping the citizenry in the dark, who benefits? The fear-mongers do, of course. Both those who are the “real” terrorist as well as our own government. Our government does the terrorists’ job – ie, they terrorize us – and they create multiple departments with virtualy unlimited power, based solely on our ignorance.
So, I suppose this is one of the reasons that I’m not looking forward to flying out to Portland. I suppose I can just put my head down and endure it, try to be cheerful when I’m treated like a criminal, when my electronics are mishandled and treated like contraband, or, perhaps, explosives, and try to say “yes” with a straight face when they ask politely if they may paw through my personal effects.
Maybe it’s only a matter of time before I get tagged as an anti-government fanatic. It’s a label that I’ll wear proudly, in the fine company of George Washington, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Paine. I just have to wonder if our government of the people does indeed represent the people in a meaningful way. Because, if it does, then I’m woefully out of touch with how the majority looks at things.
And, so, we’re coming up on another election. Is there any chance that voting for one or the other candidate will, in any way, change this political climate, and the downward spiral towards a police state? No, of course not. And I really don’t know what can break us out of this nasty state of affairs, particularly if those of us who think that it’s even a problem are in the minority. I’d say write to your congresscritter, but I’m no longer convinced that they are literate.