Friday, May 12, 2006

Spying, Short-sightedness and Stupidity


Headline in today’s Boston Globe: Most put security ahead of privacy. The article contains asinine quotes like, “I have nothing to hide, so I don't have a problem with it. If it's for the security of the country, it's OK with me.”

First, what makes idiots like that so sure that the spying is for the security of the country? I have news for you, mate – collecting information as to what numbers people call is not doing anything for the security of our country. And then how do you know you have nothing to hide? Do you think you know what those collecting the information are looking for? Do you know how that information will be used in the future? Have you ever read George Orwell’s 1984? Seen Terry Gilliam’s Brazil?

More importantly, do you know what is in the 4th Amendment to our Constitution?

Americans are not supposed to be about giving up liberty for an empty promise of security. The Ben Franklin quote has appeared so many times on these blogs that we probably all know it by heart, but here it is again:

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.

My phone calls have been recorded and it is likely that some of my emails have been read. I have nothing to hide either, but that is not the point. The Bush administration is operating outside the law, which is the point. Stupid, short-sighted Americans are saying it is okay for the government to shit all over the Constitution, and that is the point too.

I hate clichés but here’s one for you: Give them an inch and they’ll take a mile. Watch the neo-cons go for it. I, for one, am not prepared to give up one fucking millimetre without a fight.

Update: ABC News/Washington Post poll released today. 63% of Americans say collecting phone records is acceptable. Report here - http://tinyurl.com/mzodd

2 comments:

Tits Malone said...

MM,

It all seems a bit scary. However, the percentage of Americans that don't have a problem with the collection of information is surprising. What do you think is the reason for that? Is it the amount of fear mongering on television? Both the left and the right seem to be in constant battle conditions but only with each other...perhaps this is the only way for the population to engage its leaders...by constant strip search. It is kind of like the crazed, obsessed lover that sniffs your clothing to see if you are cheating. You put up with it...but only if the sex is good.

Not the most intellectual stance but I thought it might amuse you.

Max said...

TM, it has been pointed out to me elsewhere that the poll's sampling was too small, that the relevant questions were at the end of the poll and that the results are therefore skewed. Who knows?

I think that you are right, that it is the fear-mongering. I do understand that people want security, but I don't think that people understand the implications of giving up liberties for that security.