Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Trust me, you’re not that gullible

Trust me, you’re not that gullible  (link fixed, unless the paper sees fit to change it again)

(My weekly Clovis News Journal [and Portales News-Tribune] column for June 14, 2013.)

Are you surprised at the revelation that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been spying on you? Yes, you. Personally. Not you, you say? Well- as long as you don't ever use a phone, a computer, or any other form of communication. You don't, right?

I hear some good, patriotic citizens claim that as long as you have nothing to hide, you shouldn't be worried.

OK. Sounds good.

So please give me your phone number, your bank account numbers, all your passwords and PINs, your mother's maiden name, your Social Security tracking number, all your kids' personal information, and whatever else you think no one else knows. Then take your curtains down and leave your door unlocked 24 hours per day. No hiding in the bedroom or bathroom either, since you have nothing to hide.

And drop the "please" from the preceding paragraph.

It'll be OK. I don't steal, and I have no desire to run your life or harm you. I won't share your information with anyone who doesn't need access (for reasons I can't share with you). I have only your best interests at heart. Trust me.

You're not that gullible... are you?

It's not about secrecy; it's about privacy. It's not that your life is shameful; it's that it is no one else's business. Giving up your privacy destroys your liberty, and is not even in the interest of "national security"- it is in the interest of totalitarian surveillance and control. Old Soviet Union levels of control and tyranny. Or worse.

Any State that claims it needs this information in order to be secure is a government based upon extreme paranoia. It doesn't deserve your support or loyalty.

So what will you do, now that you know? Will you adjust your behavior, stop supporting these domestic enemies, and finally realize that you are responsible for governing yourself and that no one else can ever "represent" or protect you better than you can? Will you finally accept the liberty of self-ownership and reject the slavery and coercion of statism?

Or will you continue to make excuses for these crooks and deny the facts? Will you accept the "official story" and the empty assurances that your private information will stay private (beyond the offices of those spying on you, anyway) and will never be misused? Will you pretend nothing happened, or just turn on the TV and ignore unpleasant truth, believing it will go away?

Which course do you think future history will show you should have taken?


Who's against everything?

A few months ago, after I had commented on someone's Facebook post, one of his "friends" said I was "one of those people" that she called an "aginner"; someone who was simply "against everything".

Against everything? I can't even wrap my mind around that bizarre mischaracterization.

I am against aggression and theft in all their varied forms. Nothing else.

Of course, as I seem to remember, I was speaking out against aggression and/or theft committed in the name of The State.  Apparently that didn't sit well with her world-view, so she had to try to make it appear that I was just unreasonably against everything.  It showed me what she was against, and worse, what she was "for".

Not that people like her will ever listen, but it might be fun to just ask what, exactly, they are supposing I am against in the specific instance that gives them such a problem.  It might be very enlightening to see just exactly who the "aginner" really is.


And please don't forget.