Bad Sherry! “Not a good liberal/progressive/anarchist you are not,” said Yoda. Failure, cheap imitation, traitor, pretender, screams the ultra-perfect Sherry who sits perched upon my shoulder, who believes all the right things all the time. Make that left shoulder too!
But I don’t care.
I really don’t.
And, yeah, you guessed it. I’m gonna tell you why.
I don’t care if you agree or not. Well I do, but I’m trying to feel tough, and that means talk tough.
Okay, lets review the main points.
Nobody is listening into your conversations with aunt Dorothy about when if ever your aunt Lucy’s boy is going into rehab for that meth thing. Nobody is sitting inside your laptop scribbling away on a note pad that you “in the name of research” ended up on that site and spent just a little toooo long trying to figure out how they got THAT, THERE.
The NSA gathers long long computer lists of telephone numbers. When they identify a foreign terrorist overseas, and he calls one of those numbers in the US, then all the numbers that number calls are identified. If there are actual facts that make something look suspicious that a crime is being perpetrated, a warrant can be sought and obtained and then the numbers can be linked to the owners.
I realize that this all constitutes in some fashion a “slippery slope”. Everything does. When the first salamander slithered from the mud onto the rock and found it good, humankind and all its perversions was not far behind. I get that.
But let’s be real.
I mean really real.
Absent the cute phrases that we have all come to know and love/tolerate/detest secretly/not really understand/never thought of long enough to know how stupid they really are. Let’s just examine the world as it is.
Since time immemorial, there have been cameras in banks. I can’t think of a single person who has ever questioned their efficacy. There are also cameras in many stores, especially around the counters where their high-end small stuff is. Nobody questions that either. There are now cameras being attached by cities to most intersections of their cities in the hopes of identifying more criminals and thus causing them to stop committing crimes. More businesses install cameras outside too maybe to spot the thief on the way out.
Every freakin’ individual and most dogs now have smart phones and take pictures of EVERY GOD DAMN THING ON THE PLANET, and post it to every social network with the idea that we all want to see it. Uncle Norm’s stubbed toe is not one of them, but I’ll see it anyway on Facebook of I stick around long enough.
Speaking of which, Facebook knows me better than my mother ever did. It tailors my sidebar to reflect what I like, and if I say, “stop showing me that” it wants to know why, and what would I prefer. If, as I did a couple of years ago, I spend some time on a New Mexico real estate site viewing potential homes, suddenly my ads include all kinds of stuff about New Mexico.
Who is kidding who here?
If I buy anything on-line, I get a bunch of e-mails, REGULARLY I might add, with other “stuff” I might also like. If I buy a book on Amazon, they alert me of other similar books I might want to buy.
We call all this smart business.
It’s way more intrusive in my mind than whether my number called your number.
Let’s face it kiddies, this is only going to get worse.
We are pretty okay with drones monitoring our cities looking for bad behavior. We like it okay (too many of us at least) if it’s done at the Southern border, though nobody cares much about the Northern last time I asked.
Let us get one think straight: Evolution moves upward and onward.
Technology only gets more technologically savvy.
It will do more in the future. Business will learn new and exciting ways to get into my life. They are talking about prototypes of refrigerators which somehow or other know when I’ve run out of milk and will alert me. I’m sure the toilet will soon be reminding me to “wipe that again, you missed a spot.”
We are a curious species.
We love to learn new things.
We love to invent new things.
Few of us have the smarts to think ahead to how this thingamabob might be misused.
Einstein did about that nuclear option, but a bit too late as it were.
So, should we all just lay down and die?
Ready your wrists for cuffs?
Sign on to indentured servitude for life?
No, but we have to accept the fact that it’s only going to get worse. There is going to be precious little privacy in the future. Which is okay for most of us, because most of us aren’t doing anything we have to be concerned the government will frown upon. I have no meth lab in the garage, REPEATING: I HAVE NO METH LAB IN THE GARAGE!!!
The real issue is how do we insure that such stuff as is out there doesn’t get into the hands of those who would use it against people because they don’t worship right? vote right? read right? speak right? That’s the real issue.
That’s the conversation we need to be having.
Once the guys at Los Alamos figured out the A-Bomb, the rest became as it were history. We can’t stop a single country from actually making one. We pretty much know that. We’re just trying at this point to talk “bad” countries out if it. We try to “dissuade” them. What we really are trying to prevent is theft by crazy people and the resulting horrific tragedy that will ensue.
So, that’s my take on all this. I still think Snowden is an ass, and deserving of no sympathy, and I don’t have a good reason for that except that he didn’t go through “normal” channels first before blowing his horn.
So sue me.
PS: Yes it creeps me out that the people I find supporting my position are people I mostly don’t like. And that makes me slightly worried that I’ve lost my last sane brain cell.