Ralph welcomes the Washington Post’s technology columnist, Geoffrey Fowler, to explain all the ways your smart devices are gathering information about you, your garage door, your soap dispenser, your vacuum cleaner and even your toilet.
“General Dynamics develops biometric technologies which have collected data on over 230 million individuals as well as to develop surveillance systems to legally and illegally monitor their targets.” — Will Griffin
Even though a federal judge declared the government’s terrorism watchlist unconstitutional, no real remedies were put in place and the violations of civil liberties and the US wars abroad continue, says Marjorie Cohn.
“Since the dawn of capitalism, the capitalist class has had to keep an eye on the working class in order to keep them in check. This surveillance has been around for a long time but the story of the modern surveillance state begins about a century ago.”
I thought it would be good to talk about the FBI because they talk about us. They don’t like to be talked about. They don’t even like the fact that you’re listening to them being talked about. They are very sensitive people. If you look into the history of the FBI and Martin Luther King—which now has become notorious in that totally notorious history of the FBI—the FBI attempted to neutralize, perhaps kill him, perhaps get him to commit suicide, certainly to destroy him as a leader of black people in the United States. And if you follow the progression of that treatment of King, it starts, not even with the Montgomery Bus Boycott; it starts when King begins to criticize the FBI. You see, then suddenly Hoover’s ears, all four of them, perk up. And he says, okay, we have to start working on King.
The world that late-stage capitalism is creating is one where the only stable states—or things that resemble states—will be the fortified high-tech enclaves that the super-rich create in the wake of a collapsed civilization. In the scenarios that some futurists have been anticipating, by the end of this century the only places with reliable electricity are going to be the walled off communities of these elites, guarded by those seeking to be rewarded with food and housing and sustained by a neo-feudal network of farming.
We speak to Wikileaks Editor-in-chief Kristinn Hrafnsson. He discusses the leaks showing up to 50,000 people were potential targets of the Pegasus spyware that has been sold to governments around the world by NSO, an Israeli company and the inescapable global surveillance apparatus, that has also now become privatised. He also discusses the Julian Assange US extradition case, where he slams the ongoing detention of Julian Assange despite a key witness in the case against Julian Assange admitting to lying.
Covid-19’s unparalleled U.S. death number, this last year’s irreversible unemployment of tens of millions of U.S. residents, the proliferation of fires throughout the last decade, the extreme heat within much of the country that’s forced many to evacuate, and the other destabilizing factors in the core of global imperialism come in the context of an intensifying class war. A class war that the CIA, the corporate media, the police state, and the other instruments of counterrevolutionary warfare in U.S. borders are intent to keep their pulse on as the conditions of the masses slip ever deeper into chaos.
It’s an open secret among U.S. military experts, corporate elites, and DC insiders that in the coming decades, the country is going to be faced with a war which causes unprecedented destabilization for the American empire—both externally and internally. This is to say it’s quite likely that the military is going to have to fight a potential World War II-level series of conflicts abroad, and a class-based confrontation within U.S. borders which matches or surpasses the Civil War.
Without a doubt, the people who stormed the US Capitol on January 6th are not ashamed. They have been emboldened. Egged on by a wannabe proto-fascist, his endless stream of lies about a stolen election, and driven by a relatively new cultish religion called QAnon, this mob breached the Capitol of the wealthiest and most powerful imperial power in human history. This mostly white crowd, already coming from a place of enormous privilege, did something no Black or Indigenous person could ever dream of in America. Yet there they were, being allowed into the historic building by members of the Capitol police, who some would later take selfies with. At the end of the day, four people would be dead, including a woman who was trying to break into the building. She is being referred to by some on the far right as a “martyr for the revolution.” A police officer would be dead a short time later from his injuries.
“Then there’s that secret room on the base in which even Australians aren’t allowed to enter. For decades Australian government officials have claimed that they know everything that is going on at Pine Gap mainly in response to the public demanding answers to what the CIA and other US military agencies are doing there. So much has been and still is in secret.” — Will Griffin