The Surveillance State + Shredding the Constitution
First Program: Glenn Greenwald - The Surveillance State
Snooping, prying, eavesdropping, call it what you want the government is doing it on a scale never before seen. Sophisticated new technologies allow for more intrusions into our private lives. Beyond the ever present cameras, there is deep data-mining, nano-second biometric identification and drone aircraft in the skies above. The invasive monitoring of public space and the simultaneous erosion of our rights has been largely a bi-partisan affair. State surveillance power, undermining basic freedoms in the name of protecting them, is growing relentlessly. The swelling domestic databases of the NSA and FBI may contain your personal information. And this burgeoning Orwellian apparatus has become a cash cow for corporations providing what are called security services. Comedian Stephen Colbert sarcastically observes, There are bound to be casualties in the never-ending war on terror and one of them just happens to be the U.S. Constitution.
The Constitution is often referred to in reverential, almost sacred terms. Its framers too are endowed with near holy qualities. Politicians vie with one another as they pay lip service to the country's founding document. But over the years from the Palmer Raids to political witch-hunts known as McCarthyism to COINTELPRO to the present, the Constitution has been violated by the government. Criminalization of dissent, a hallmark of totalitarian regimes, is increasing. The FBI raids the homes and offices of anti-war activists in Chicago and Minneapolis. It has targeted Greenpeace and other environmental and peace and justice groups. Citizens are spied upon. E-mails are read. Phones are tapped. And everywhere cameras take pictures. In the name of security basic freedoms are being eroded as state policing agencies accrue more and more power.
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