America’s Surveillance State, Part 6: The Future

Dandelion Salad

Replaced video June 15, 2020

True Story Documentary Channel on Sep 7, 2019

Domestic Spying

Image by Dandelion Salad via Flickr

We live in the United States of Surveillance — with cameras increasingly positioned on street corners and with much more invisible spying online and on the phone. Anyone who is paying attention knows that privacy could be out the window. All of this is not happening by accident -well funded powerful agencies and companies are engaged in the business of keeping tabs on what we do, what we say, and what we think.

To many in the world, today, the face of America also has A BIG NOSE for sniffing and sifting mountains of data—phone calls, emails and texts. And with many mouths silenced by paranoia to keep what they decide is secret, secret. America has become a Surveillance-Industrial State where everyone’s business has become its business, and where one huge US intelligence Agency has been given the sanction and unlimited amounts of money to spy on the whole world.

Mass Surveillance is the focus of this new 6 part investigative documentary series examining who is watching whom and why.

From the archives:

America’s Surveillance State, Part 1: The Surveillance Machine

America’s Surveillance State, Part 2: Inside The NSA: How Do They Spy?

America’s Surveillance State, Part 3: The Press Versus The NSA

America’s Surveillance State, Part 4: The Surveillance Industrial Complex

America’s Surveillance State, Part 5: Insider Threats

Juice Rap News: Episode 15 – Big Brother is WWWatching You

Ralph Nader: The U.S. is Teetering on the Verge of Being a Police State

Edward Snowden: Here’s How We Take Back The Internet

8 thoughts on “America’s Surveillance State, Part 6: The Future

  1. Sorry Lo, a rather long screed…that I hope does not affect your day.

    I think Glenn Greenwald summarized it really well in his recent TED talk, Why Privacy Matters.

    As I see it, the root challenge of governance or “social order,” in all its mutable global manifestations, is the fundamental question of accountable representation ~ civic trust and responsibility. In short, whatever we choose to define as the public good and in our best sovereign interest.

    The problem we face, of inverted totalitarianism, that Sheldon Wolin unpacks so eloquently, is that it serves the corrupt and corrupting “interests” of (institutionalized) hierarchical privilege; through the blindly indiscriminate commodification of all aspects of life. Its offensive actions being allegedly validated by the ecocidal logics of ruthless, relentless extraction & slave-driven exploitation ~ all in the name of progress.

    In brief ~ by the algorithmic manipulation of money tokens, society is riven and driven into ghettos of deprivation, under “security” measures that literally displace free ownership of our separate but entangled lives.

    Anyone with even a modicum of common sense can see that this is a catastrophic cul-de-sac ~ “organized” lunacy on an epic scale. A form of mass psychosis precipitously teetering at the very brink of extinction ~ not just of itself, but all of us.

    Even the accepted economic categories we have been conditioned to believe in, are implicitly solipsistic. Labour for example, is a term that nearly always refers to someone else’s sweat. It abstracts and reduces the nuanced variability of an individual’s life experience, simply rendering it down into quantifiable instrumental units of time and utility.

    You’re just another number in a faceless crowd. A cog in the big business machine. To my way of thinking, conventional economics is the most ludicrously redundant form of thought ever devised. It neither dignifies the individual nor takes proper account of the damage we are doing to our biosphere.

    The bottom line (yet another characteristic cliche,) is that surveillance obviously has to pay, otherwise it would not need to exist in a world for which profit is the supreme god.

    The counter-argument that the Stasi for example was nothing like this capitalist phenomenon, is specious, frankly.

    Its rationale was exactly the same, only its gain was the advantage that personal information had to ruling “houses” ~ the necessary party apparatus of authority. The notion behind the entire rickety edifice of capitalist enterprise, is no different ~ mercenary gain…through Intimidation, threat, betrayal, disempowerment, piracy and theft. garnished with a side order of philanthropy.

    The only genuine corrective is surely the enlightened exercise of (enlightening) law, real law.

    Law that should call forth the highest ethical standards, stipulate the most scrupulous open discourse and promote authentic “justness…” for a splendid recent example

    When the burps and farts of billionaires and despots count as the sole guiding principles of life, then we all may as well just go whistle dixie to the stuffed birds as the luxury yachts sail on.

    We shall always have the government we deserve, because in the final analysis we are that government ~ all powers of state claim rule by formal consent ~ our consent, or God’s. The right to dissent is primary and necessary, just in case God has got it wrong.

    So, who or what is finally in control of YOU, or “I?” Ancient deities, Chinese Marxists, bacteria, Walmart, black holes, Goldman Sachs execs, quants & the IMF~World Bank brigade, the eurozone, clever gadgets, Persian heavens, fashion, Hollywood?

    Is it time to revisit the Thomist prophet McLuhan? who messed with the ironies and paradoxes of electric media in his pop-gallery of (distorting) mirrors, ambiguous messaging and psychosocial “massaging,” unveiling artefacts as determinants of consciousness etc….some would say, presciently?

    Only, McLuhan’s surreal dystopian village antics were far from inclusive or exhaustive. His early futurist-tinged mechanical bride was inevitably unappealing to subsequent feminist thinkers, grappling with the steely cold-war nuts and bolts of gender politics. His strangeness might even be seen as a cautionary tale alerting us to the risks of carving a populist career out of metaphor. He never engaged with Islam, caricatured tribalism, punning his way into celebrity, preferring to fetishize Finnegans Wake whilst preaching the electronic body of Christ. It was he who advised Leary to “turn on, tune in and drop out” ~ inspiring perpetual generational alienation.

    So perhaps artifice, integrity & art should not be so gratuitously & eagerly conflated. Cue, the NSA….keep ’em guessing boys!

    We are bewildered and bedazzled with the surfeit of distraction that assaults us at every turn, soberly instructed to feel enmeshed, dependant and intimidated by the pervasive matrices of hyper-magical constraint, walls of wealth & machineries of influence ~ reflexively broadcasting the illusion of super-rich authority & luxury porn, like some sort of self-fulfilling collective psychosis; but…as these tedious digital quanta sluice around us and pirouette their way through every pore and facet of our lives, one deeper, inscrutable unknown remains totally untouched ~ the indefinable qualia of individual prudence and the sacred mystery of human will. This is the great question.

    Rule by consent I would urge, does not have to mean consenting to be a victim of contrived “consensual” rule ~ whatever its real or imagined military might, expertise, guaranteed “securities” or professed right to absolute dominance.

  2. Pingback: America’s Surveillance State, Part 5: Insider Threats | Dandelion Salad

  3. Pingback: America’s Surveillance State, Part 3: The Press Versus The NSA | Dandelion Salad

  4. Pingback: America’s Surveillance State, Part 4: The Surveillance Industrial Complex | Dandelion Salad

  5. Pingback: America’s Surveillance State, Part 2: Inside The NSA: How Do They Spy? | Dandelion Salad

  6. Pingback: America’s Surveillance State, Part 1: The Surveillance Machine | Dandelion Salad

  7. We must ask the question as to why their is increasing surveillance? the prevailing view as to why establishment authorities would say, to protect us the public from terrorism? I suggest we look in another direction, that is, this ploy is a trumped up scenario, is a cover up of the establishment on control of the individual mind, this diversion to avert the public”s attention from militarism, and the cost to the public having to pay taxation for war or excursions of military action to exploit overseas nations resources for the benefit of the financial elite, the collaboration of media to promote propaganda, of diverting the public attention of violence within the first world exported, as a ideology transported abroad, and the increasing fear, of the public not being credible to believe the indoctrination, of establishment.

Comments are closed.