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Danger Lampost

Futurist & Technology Consultant,

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Every email, phone call, text message, and video chat is monitored and recorded. Now what?

It wasn't all that long ago, that we could safely presume that our private conversations were not being monitored or recorded on a routine basis. That has changed now. It is safe to assume that every electronic communication that can be recorded is being recorded. This includes every phone call you make or pick up. This is mostly being done by the United States, using massive new data centers being built in places like the state of Utah, but many other countries are in the game too.

The official line is that we're doing this for national defense. Just in case some evil chatter comes across, we need to know if someone's planning to nuke a major city, right? And if you've got nothing to hide, then you've got nothing to worry about, right? All those thousands of drone aircraft flying over head in U.S. airspace now, never mind them, right?

With the National Defense Authorization Act in place as law now, it is possible that someone's personal emails will be recorded, interpreted as terrorist "chatter", and then a U.S. citizen could be held in jail indefinitely without any charges being brought and without any recourse. What's happened to my country?

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    Gail . 50+

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    Nov 29 2012: Fear has happened to our country. Great, irrational fear. Because of this, a great darkness has come over the earth, and that darkness is fear-inspired ignorance.

    It is a well known fact that "in our culture", fear is the most effective motivator. So (in the sentiments of Goehring of Hitler's reich), to control the masses, you nearly need to point out how they are in danger (inspire fear) and condemn the pacifists (and rational thinkers) for lack of patriotism and putting everyone in jeopardy.

    Fear is the tool used by politicians and charitable organizations. All who need to motivate people agree on this. All studies prove the efficacy of this.

    Not only does our government do this very successfully, so do fundamentalist religions. As mainstream xtianity has dwindled, the name Christianity has been taken over by a terrified lot, who obviously fear that the god they "worship", is either unable or unwilling to protect them. (How rational is that?)

    Fox News and Rush Limbaugh specialize in fear-tactics, which is how viewers and listeners fall for diversionary tactics meant to keep them embracing fears and not looking at a larger picture that is more truthful and less terrifying. Studies show that Fox news viewers are less informed than those who do not keep up with news, and they are very disinformed, so they are the sheeple who beg to be fleeced and butchered, and who battle fiercely to preserve their right to be victimized. Fox news has the largest audience, so it is now the "lamestream" media, though it fiercely denies it.

    But worse than that - our educational systems have failed us. We are taught outright lies about our own history, and students are not taught essentials that would make it possible for us to fix what is broken. We are "taught" to mistake emotion for thought, and most people are not able to understand that their motivations are emotion driven rather than intelligence driven.

    The enlightenment is dead. Welcome to the endarkening.
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      Nov 29 2012: I think you are right 110% - it's fear. Those laughable color coded terror alert system was one of the most blatant and obvious examples of a government injecting fearing among its own citizens; I'm glad we dropped that. Turn on cable "news" and you will get your daily dose of fear. Fear apparently sells a lot of advertising too.

      This article (http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/06/18/1101012/-Are-we-Entering-Another-Dark-Age) echoes your thoughts pretty much dead on I think, but encourages us to put up the good fight with some specific suggestions rather than quietly go into the darkness.

      As both parties have contributed to this (with Bush creating the National Defense Authorization Act and Obama strengthening it), and with an apparently out of control NSA, it would appear there is no easy way to fix this using democratic principles.

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