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Are we living in Orwell's 1984 Oceania surveillance state?

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Perhaps, Georg Orwell's worst nightmare has come true in the wake of whistleblower Edward Snowden's startling revelations of secret government surveillance.

Writing under the title, "So Are We Living in 1984?" Ian Crouch of New Yorker argued that Edward Snowden, sounded, in the Guardian interview in which he came forward, like he'd been guided by Orwell's pen.

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The book aims to serve as a warning for what can happen when government overextends its powers; the term "Orwellian" has become associated with the idea of a totalitarian society. The haunting, but much-loved, book celebrated its 60th anniversary on June 6 amid the backdrop of real-life controversy that made the novel seem more prophetic than fictional.

Not surprisingly, sales of 1984 have been soaring in the wake of startling revelations of secret government surveillance. Now, sales of George Orwell's classic have spiked -- increasing by an incredible 337% on As of noon on June 11, the book was number 5 on the "movers and shakers list," which represent the biggest gains in sales over the past 24 hours.

Are we living in "Nineteen Eighty-Four", the New Yorker asked and added: The technological possibilities of surveillance and data collection and storage surely surpass what Orwell imagined .

According to Silicon Beat, a San Francisco man has started a movement called "Flood Washington with 1984."Brian Morearty, an independent software consultant who has worked at such companies as Intuit and Oracle, is calling for people to send copies of Orwell's book to their legislators to protest the spying by the National Security Agency..

His official goal is to send 100,000 copies to Washington by July 4, although he told Silicon Beat in an email there's no real way for him to know when that goal is reached. Morearty said he sent a copy of "1984"- to Senator Feinstein's Washington, D.C., office. Feinstein says Snowden is a traitor. "I don't look at this as being a whistleblower. I think it's an act of treason."

ACLU sues over NSA phone records program

On June 11, the American Civil Liberties Union sued the Obama administration, asking the government to halt a phone-tracking program that collects the telephone records of millions of Americans and that it says is unconstitutional. The lawsuit was filed in federal court in New York by the American Civil Liberties Union, along with the New York Civil Liberties Union.

"The practice is akin to snatching every American's address book--with annotations detailing whom we spoke to, when we talked, for how long, and from where," the lawsuit says. "It gives the government a comprehensive record of our associations and public movements, revealing a wealth of detail about our familial, political, professional, religious, and intimate associations."

The phone-records program, disclosed last week by Britain's Guardian newspaper, collects customer "metadata," including the phone numbers dialed and the length of calls -- and, senators said, location data, which intelligence analysts use to detect patterns and personal connections. The administration said that the program does not monitor the content of calls and that it has been reviewed by a secret surveillance court and Congress.

A separate Internet surveillance program, known as PRISM, allows the NSA to collect videos, photos, e-mails, documents and connection logs for foreign users thought to be located overseas through nine leading Internet companies. The government obtains the data through orders approved by the secret court established by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. That program was disclosed by The Washington Post and the Guardian.

According to the Associated Press, the lawsuit--which names as defendants the heads of national intelligence as well as the agencies they lead, including the National Security Agency, the FBI, the Department of Defense and the Department of Justice--also asks the court to purge phone records collected under the program, claiming the government action violates the First and Fourth Amendments of the Constitution.

The ACLU claims standing as a former customer of Verizon, adding that the government likely has much of its metadata stored in its databases.

The suit also alleges the government's program exceeds the congressional authority provided by the Patriot Act and singles out a particular provision that has given the government more leeway in obtaining

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Author and journalist. Author of Islamic Pakistan: Illusions & Reality; Islam in the Post-Cold War Era; Islam & Modernism; Islam & Muslims in the Post-9/11 America. Currently working as free lance journalist. Executive Editor of American (more...)
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oppose his plans?  A lot of people think so, ... by Mark Adams JD/MBA on Saturday, Jun 15, 2013 at 11:01:12 AM
They'll believe everything they're told to believe... by 911TRUTH on Saturday, Jun 15, 2013 at 2:38:47 PM