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Big Brother: America's Police State Mentality in the Electronic Age

By Rodrigue Tremblay  Posted by Lance Ciepiela (about the submitter)     Permalink
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Big Brother is Watching You
(Image by Flickr Cameron Self)
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"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790), American inventor, journalist, printer, diplomat, and statesman (1775)

 

"Americans used to roar like lions for liberty; now we bleat like sheep for security."Norman Vincent Peale (1898 --1993), American Christian preacher and author

 

"A Party member lives from birth to death under the eye of the Thought Police. Even when he is alone he can never be sure that he is alone. ...At the apex of the pyramid comes Big Brother. Big Brother is infallible and all-powerful. Every success, every achievement, every victory, every scientific discovery, all knowledge, all wisdom, all happiness, all virtue, are held to issue directly from his leadership and inspiration." George Orwell (1903-1950)

 

(Eric Arthur Blair), (book: 1984)

"Since information gives power, access to personal files can lead to unreasonable pressures, even blackmail, especially against those with the least resources, people who depend upon public programs, for example. Big Brother isn't a camera. Big Brother is a computer." C.J. Howard, political novel "Cybercash"

In 2049, when the 100th anniversary of the publication of George Orwell political novel "1984" will be celebrated, it will be recalled that the immediate post September 11, 2001 period marked the beginning of a gradual decline in personal liberty and freedom, especially in the United States but also elsewhere, and the emergence of a great information-obsessed Leviathan. Freedom rarely disappears in one fell swoop. Its disappearance is rather the end result of a thousand encroachments.

 

Pushed to the extreme and without clear democratic oversight, it becomes the mark of a totalitarian state, when authorities feel that they never have enough information on the people. It is because information is power and state bureaucrats and politicians naturally like to be in control; on the one hand, releasing as little information about their own actions through an imposed secrecy, and on the other, accumulating as much information as possible about the citizens.

 

And today, modern governments have all the tools to transform their country into a creeping police state, more so now then ever before, in this electronic age. They have access to information technology that previous full-fledged "police state" governments could only have dreamed about.

 

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