Government surveillance of the people it governs is needed only to prop up a regime that has no legitimate support among the people it governs. It was true long ago, it is true today. Given that our government is made up of unelected bureaucrats and elected officials that are supported – and vetted – by major corporations and lobbies unconnected to the people as a whole, it is necessary that the government place its citizens under surveillance.
How long has this been going on? Look back to the COINTELPRO operations of the 1960s. Not only did the FBI and CIA spy on US citizens in the name of national security, they also engaged agents provocateurs to stage incidents, assassinated leaders of movements hostile to the status quo, and even did some drug dealing of their own to radicalize the antiwar movement. Perhaps the scope of recent revelations seems vast by comparison, but the amount of communications currently ongoing is equally vast.
Given what national security apparatchniks could do back in the 1960s, the current revelations regarding PRISM are merely a logical extension of those capabilities. The question we’re now faced with is simple: what does our government do with that information that it collects every day?
Clearly, it’s not to catch terrorists. The only terrorist captures trotted out to our view are victims of government sting operations – people approached by the government and encouraged by the government to engage in radical, violent activities… and then arrested by the government for falling victim to the temptation it offered. Anyone planning violence on his or her own goes about, unknown to the eyes and ears that are everywhere spying on us, and they carry out their violence with terrible effect. Worse, should the terrorist use a gun, a large portion of the nation will ride to the defense of that gun, if not the terrorist. Most bizarre are the politicians that will swallow whole the justification of national surveillance as a means to fight terror, but who will then strain at the notion of a database of gun owners that could be cross-checked with other databases, say, of known criminals or persons with sketchy mental histories.
So what does the government do with this information? It’s obvious. The answer, which may surprise some of you, comes from L. Ron Hubbard. The guy was no dummy, whatever his faults may have been. Hubbard went after his enemies not with bullets – “the guns only shot the pawns” – but with private investigators. Once you know someone’s sins that he or she would do anything to keep quiet, they’ll do anything for you.
If blackmail wasn’t enough, digging up dirt was still needed to form grounds for lawsuits. “The purpose of the suit is to harass and discourage rather than to win. The law can be used very easily to harass, and enough harassment on somebody who is simply on the thin edge anyway, well knowing that he is not authorized, will generally be sufficient to cause his professional decease. If possible, of course, ruin him utterly.” – L. Ron Hubbard, A Manual on the Dissemination of Material, 1955
And, really, what’s a few million in lawyer fees to the US Government? Or, rather, what’s a few millions of someone else’s money spent on lawyer fees to the lobbies and corporations that dominate the government? That’s the whole point of our government today: it is to protect the powerful in their abuses. Surveillance is needed so that if anyone gets on the radar screen as a serious threat to the excesses of the powerful, such a person can be neutralized with ease. Blowhard television commentators are not threats, by the way. The true threats are people with actual stories to tell.
What’s sad is that those little people with big stories also have little sins in their lives that leave them vulnerable to character assassination in the media. It’s to the point where only Jesus Christ himself could take on the deviltry we call government.