Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 734, August 18, 2013

Not a single American alive today was ever a slave—
except, of course, of the military and the RS. Not a
single American alive today has ever kept slaves—
except, of course, for the politicians and bureaucrats.

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But Does Peeping Tom Protect You?
by L. Reichard White

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Attribute to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

"The technotronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values. Soon it will be possible to assert almost continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain up-to-date complete files containing even the most personal information about the citizen. These files will be subject to instantaneous retrieval by the authorities."
—National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, Between Two Ages: America's Role in the Technetronic Era Published October 28th, 1976 by Penguin Books

Is this Orwellian future, published in 1976, now? Is it to protect you? Does it?

By this time, thanks to whistle-blower Edward Snowden putting his future on the line, you know that the formerly secret United States NSA spy bureaucracy has been unconstitutionally spooking the phone calls of all Verizon customers—and almost everyone else in the world. That includes your late-night heart-to-hearts with mom and sweet Mary.

According to Mr. Snowden—and verified by another NSA whistle blower, William Biney—NSA was recording 600 million phone calls a day. And that was back when they were just getting warmed up. Will this protect you?

But it's also become clear that NSA is also "vacuuming up" all internet content as well as the phone calls. The Guardian revealed that NSA taps into Google, Apple, Facebook, YouTube, AOL, PalTalk Yahoo, Skype, and Microsoft just for starters. Heck, NSA even wrote some of the code used in Google's Android phone. Because Google lacks competent code jockeys perhaps??

And will all that peeping protect you?

It's also clear that Uncle Sam doesn't limit himself to just spying on us Americans—and that U.S.A. Corp. isn't the only government indulging itself this way.

It seems that these days Peeping Tom is always watching. But will that protect you?

Statistics show the U.S. spends more than 50,000 times as much per victim on anti-terrorism than it does on any other cause of death, including heart attack, stroke and cancer. "50,000 times as much" is not a typo. For example, the U.S. spends $500 million ($500,000,000) of your tax money per victim on anti-terrorism efforts but only $10,000 per victim on cancer research.

Is this a rational way to protect you?

The seriously hackneyed excuse is, as usual, "national security." Unfortunately, in tune with Celine's First Law—and as historian Howard Zinn pointed out—"National Security" has become a code-phrase that translates as something like, "protecting lies we tell so the people we farm for taxes won't rebel."

"But," you may be thinking, "Peeping Tom is mostly interested in terrorists, not in me. Right?"

Well, not exactly.

According to at-the-time ACLU head and New York U. law professor Nadine Strossen (and whistle-blower Al Martin, etc.), these spy provisions are traditionally used against citizens, not against terrorists.

And that IS how it works. For example,

JOHN SHIFFMAN: ...the DEA's Special Operations Division will send the [NSA intercept] information to a DEA agent in the field or a FBI agent or an ICE agent or state policeman, and they'll give him the information. Then they'll say, "Look, you know, we understand that there will be a truck going to a certain park in Texas at a certain time. It's a red truck. It'll be two people involved." And the state trooper or the DEA will find you reason to pull the truck over, say for a broken tail light or for speeding, that sort of thing.
—A Domestic Surveillance Scandal at the DEA? Agents Urged to Cover Up Use of NSA Intel in Drug Probes | Democracy Now!

But that's just the tip of a very ugly iceberg. Whistle-blower Snowden sketches out the submerged part for you—

"Even if you're not doing anything wrong, you're being watched and recorded. You simply have to eventually fall under suspicion from somebody, even by a wrong call, and then they can use the system to go back in time and scrutinize every decision you've ever made, every friend you've ever discussed something with."
—Snowden: Leak of NSA spy programs "marks my end"—CBS News

Will this protect you?

You've seen the cop shows, right? Just think of all the J. Edgar Hoover vs. John F. Kennedy etc. style blackmail possibilities! And how the East German Stasi operated before the Berlin Wall came down.

Luckily for most of us, the blackmail traditionally starts at the top. Another NSA whistleblower, Russell Tice (back-burnered by U.S.—MSM, probably as "requested" by the spooks), verifies another Snowden contention. Mr. Tice says NSA spied on Barack Obama in 2004.

Did that protect you?

Mr. Tice also confirms that NSA is currently lying about the extent of their spying. Further, says Tice, NSA also spied on General David Petraeus, other military commanders, Supreme Court Justices, etc. You may recall that four-star General Petraeus resigned as head of CIA after a clandestine relationship with a female reporter was strategically revealed.

Unfortunately, the blackmail—"leverage" as the pros call it—sort of trickles down. Ultimately it gets down to this:

"There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws."
Atlas Shrugged (1957)

Does this protect you?

I know. You've done nothing wrong and so have nothing to worry about. Right? On the other hand, it's estimated that the average American unknowingly breaks at least three laws per day.

Which shouldn't be a surprise since approximately 40,000 state laws took effect in the U.S. just at the beginning of 2012 alone. There are so many, even Congress can't figure out how many it passed, let alone all the laws passed by states, counties and municipalities, etc. And the rules, regulations, orders and controls promulgated by bureaucracies at every level.

And remember, ignorance of the law is no excuse—even when there are millions of them.

Does this protect you?

Also keep in mind that in most jurisdictions, there are at least 128 government agencies that can arrest you.

Do you have something to hide? Given the number of rules, regulations, orders, controls (and laws on the books)—and the number of enforcers—what do you think?

But, does it protect you?

And it's not just the government you have to worry about. There are over 1.4 million other potential Peeping Toms, private surveillance contractors with top-secret clearance, who, like Edward Snowden, might get access, even to your heart-to-hearts with mom and sweet Mary.

So given all the folks who could jail or blackmail you, be very careful what you say and text on your cell, tablet, and PC. And, keeping all those surveillance cameras in mind, what you say and do in public. Or private.

You certainly don't want someone phoning in an anonymous tip, putting you in the Neo-Stasi cross-hairs. A pissed-off friend, neighbor or ex-lover for example.

But we don't worry too much about all the data Google, Yahoo, MasterCard, VISA, SAM'S CLUB, etc. collects do we? Why worry about Uncle Sam? Google, VISA, etc. can't arrest, blackmail, incarcerate, or torture you. On the other hand, they DO "share" information with Uncle, who can.

Welcome to the new America!

I know, I know. But despite Nixon's "enemies list,"—and Obama's secret kill listof course it can't happen here. Right?

But either way, does all this peeping protect you?

According to NSA Director Keith Alexander testifying to Congress June 18, 2013 more than 50 "potential terrorist events" have been thwarted, including 10 within the United States.

Pretty impressive, right? Except, as Mr. Alexander testified, there were only ten in the U.S.—and the first was a guy busted in San Diego for collecting ~$8,000 and sending it to a group in Somalia—in 2002. Truly terrifying I'm sure. But the bust was ~7 years late—and did it protect you?

And notice that they started their list of ten domestic terrorism assists in 2002, eleven years ago. That amounts to less than one assist per year. Which probably explains that $500 million ($500,000,000) per victim spent on anti-terrorism efforts compared to $10,000 per cancer victim.

And of course, they missed a few—911, the Fort Hood shooting, and even with those wall-to-wall cops, the FBI admits they couldn't stop The Boston Marathon bombing.

Here's something else to consider: Most of the highly publicized "terrorist" busts—something like 17 of 20 (85%) the last time I looked—were what honest folks call "entrapment." That is, government or government-run informants make someone an offer [1] they don't refuse. This offer is to do something illegal. The "Viper Militia" in Arizona, the plot to blow-up the West Virginia fingerprint lab, the much hyped Fort Dix massacre plot [2]—perhaps even "The Olympic Park Bombing"—etc. are examples.

This entrapment "Handschu Scam" has been honed to a fine point by several subdivisions of Uncle's Storm Troopers. The dirty little secret is that entrapment creates crimes where none would otherwise exist. So the law-and-order industry gets kudos for preventing "crimes" they created in the first place.

[Quazi Nafis] case drew claims of government entrapment after the FBI supplied the inert explosives, the van used to carry them, the detonator and even the storage facility where an agent helped Nafis assemble the fake bomb.
—Man Sentenced to 30 Years for Bid to Attack Federal Reserve with Fake Bomb, Democracy Now!

Does this protect you?

But sometimes things go wrong. As they did when the FBI's government-run informant, Emad Salem, failed to supply fake explosives in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center North Tower, what some folks now call "911, the First Generation." That little mistake killed six and injured 1,042.

Did this protect you?

You can find the current bottom line in Orwellistan? Are we there yet mommy??. Despite Peeping Big Brother's denials , you'll discover just how close to Orwellistan we already are. As former NSA chief of research Biney put it, we already have "turnkey totalitarianism." And, in a June 23, 2013 RT interview Mr. Biney elaborates: ~"They're setting up a totalitarian state. They can 'leverage' [blackmail] anybody." All someone has to do is turn-the-key and we've arrived! Mommy.

Of course, as we all know, no one would dare turn that totalitarian key here in the freest country in the world. Would they?

But if they did, what would you do about it? Or would you just kiss the hand (etc.) that plea-bargains and/or otherwise blackmails you?

Is ten domestic assists in eleven years (perhaps some real ones with a ew screw-ups), a price-tag of $500,000,000 per victim—and the government plus 1.4 million other top-secret-cleared potential blackmailers—worth the price?

So, what do you think? Does Peeping Tom protect you? Do you want him to keep pretending?

In case you still have doubts, you might consider this—

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety"
—Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania (1759)

Maybe it's time to junk the whole system and start over?

You might consider starting here: Mozilla-backed "Stop Watching Us" Grows.

You can find updates, corrections, and additions here: Golden Sources: Updates for "But Does Peeping Tom Protect You?"


[1] The FBI tried to turn Randy Weaver into such a government-run informant, and when he refused, they ultimately killed his wife (literally "babe in arms"), his son, and shot Randy and his friend Kevin Harris. return

[2] "The FBI's use of two convicts as paid informants in the case, one of whom was fighting deportation, has led some to accuse the FBI of entrapment."
—2007 Fort Dix attack plot—Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia return

L. Reichard White [send him mail] taught physics, designed and built a house, ran for Nevada State Senate, served two terms on the Libertarian National Committee, managed a theater company, etc. but his hobby is explaining things he wishes someone had explained to him. You can find a few of his other explanations here.

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