THE DIGITAL SURVEILLANCE STATE: VAST, SECRET, AND DANGEROUS

Glenn Greenwald continues his impressive analysis of our National Security State. Before I go on, you can read Greenwald’s analysis here–you just have to search around. Trust me, the posts pertaining to the National Security State will surely stand out to you. Anyways here is some of what Greenwald wrote for the Cato Unbound Blog;

In sum, the picture that emerges from the Post series is that we have a Secret Government of 854,000 people, so vast and so secret that nobody knows what it does or what it is. That there is a virtually complete government/corporate merger when it comes to the National Security and Surveillance State is indisputable: “Private firms have become so thoroughly entwined with the government’s most sensitive activities that without them important military and intelligence missions would have to cease or would be jeopardized.”

As little oversight as Surveillance State officials have, corporate officials engaged in these activities have even less. Relying upon profit-driven industry for the intelligence community’s “core mission” is to ensure that we have Endless War and an always-expanding Surveillance State. After all, the very people providing us with the “intelligence” that we use to make decisions are the ones who are duty-bound to keep this Endless War and Surveillance Machine alive and expanding because, as the Post put it, they are “obligated to shareholders rather than the public interest.” The Surveillance State thus provides its own fuel and own rationale to ensure its endless expansion, all while resisting any efforts to impose transparency or accountability on it.

And as we acquiesce to more and more sacrifices of our privacy to the omnipotent Surveillance State, it builds the wall of secrecy behind which it operates higher and more impenetrable, which means it constantly knows more about the actions of citizens, while citizens constantly know less about it. We chirp endlessly about the Congress, the White House, the Supreme Court, the Democrats and Republicans, but this is the Real U.S. Government: a massive Surveillance State functioning in darkness, beyond elections and parties, so secret, vast and powerful that it evades the control or knowledge of any one person or even any organization.

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Published in: on August 9, 2010 at 9:31 pm  Leave a Comment  
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