OP-ED: George Orwell said, “Good prose is like a windowpane. I cannot say with certainty which of my motives are the strongest, but I know which of them deserve to be followed.” For him, the strongest impulse was political change. The author of 1984 and Animal Farm, having experienced first hand the effects of government control, wrote with an innate determination to push the world in a certain direction. Perhaps a better explanation would be that Orwell wrote to push back against totalitarian governments rather than see such oppression become the norm.
More and more we are seeing the average person come to accept as normal the intrusions being made into his daily life. And sadly, fewer and fewer see such intrusions as tyranny. They do not understand that big government is no accident.
The fact is that, the bigger government is, the easier it is to control the populace without it realizing it is being controlled. And once the general populace does realize what has happened, it will be all but too late to do anything about it. Once our liberties and freedoms are gone, they will be nearly impossible to get back.
Orwell would have had a field day writing about freedoms Americans are giving up willingly every day. Consider a few examples:
1) A sophisticated surveillance grid known as “Trapwire” is being installed in major cities all over the United States. Unfortunately, most Americans do not even realize that it exists. Trapwire, developed by Abraxas, a northern Virginia company, makes most modern facial recognition technology appear antiquated. And according to messages obtained from over 5 million emails by Anonymous, the capabilities and scope of Trapwire have largely gone unnoticed by America at large.
2) Politicians know more about you than they ever have before. If you voted this election season, President Obama almost certainly has a file on you. His campaign database includes information on voters’ magazine subscriptions, car registrations, housing values and hunting licenses, along with scores estimating how likely they were to cast ballots for his reelection. And he isn’t alone in the practice.
3) Few Americans realize that the DNA of nearly every newborn baby in America is collected and stored by the government. States require hospitals to screen newborns for certain genetic and other disorders. To collect the DNA sample, medical personnel prick the newborn’s heel and place a few drops of blood on a card. It is common for states to keep such samples permanently. Some states also use the samples for unrelated purposes, such as in scientific research, and give access to the samples to others.
4) A new bill in the U.S. Senate would allow 22 different government agencies to read your email without a search warrant.
5) Cell phones collect information about you wherever you go, and law enforcement authorities in the United States request that cell phone information a million times a year.
6) BRS Labs has developed “pre-crime surveillance cameras” that purportedly can identify criminal activity before it happens. These cameras are being installed at major transportation hubs all over San Francisco. Philip K. Dick only imagined such things when he wrote Minority Report.
7) A family in Idaho had their home raided by a SWAT team because a computer identified them as “constitutionalists” after someone had phoned in and complained about a domestic disturbance at their address.
These are not isolated incidents, but rather a growing wave of government intrusions that threaten to drown our personal liberty in the name of protecting us. Perhaps it is time for more of us to push back while there is still enough collective strength in that push to accomplish anything.
©2013 Off the Grid News