Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Fighting Terrorism By Boiling Frogs

There is a lot of consternation (here's some and some more and more and more and even more) on the Internet about a new advisory poster being distributed by our benevolent government officials on what suspicious activities some persons might engage in that regular citizens should be on the lookout for in order to help in the "War Against Terrorism". It is surprising how much innocuous activity is no longer to be considered innocent. What is even ironic is how much of these actions were once recommended - like protecting our computers from eavesdroppers or stocking up on food and medical supplies in case of disasters - by those same officials in order to protect us mundanes from becoming the victims of some type of crime or catastrophe. Well, I'm here to tell you that soon all those activities that are currently listed as just "suspicious" will one day be violations of the law.

"But Mr. Wickham," you say, "what legislative body in its right mind (that's a mythical creature) would dare to impose restrictions against individuals doing these things? The people would raise such a protest that something like this would never see the light of day."

And you are right. To get around the legislative process, the executive branch of the several governments of these United States will call upon prosecutors at all levels to come up with new and creative uses of older, established laws that are completely outside any legitimacy these laws may have once held when they were first passed. This is similar to medicine where an old drug is found to have benefits outside of its original use, like aspirin used to prevent heart attacks and strokes.

"But Mr. Wickham," you say again, "no jury of reasonable persons (another mythical creature) in this country would ever convict someone based on a law that clearly doesn't apply."

I'm sorry to tell you that that happens all the time. You have to have a better understanding of how the Criminal Justice Systems really works in this country. It's a lot like a magic act. A good magician works to have you focus only on that which he wants you to see and not pay attention to anything else that might be happening on stage. By providing you with a limited view of all the facts pertaining to the trick he is performing, when it's done you have to draw the conclusion that it must of been "magic." If you saw everything he did, then it would be one giant, ho-hum whoopteedoo.

That jury of your peers are not allowed to know all the facts of any case nor are they allowed to judge the merits of the law as it is being applied in the trial before them. Those decisions have been made by the prosecution and the court (read: trial judge). The jury, just like the audience to the magic act, are only allowed to make their determination of guilt or innocence based only on the limited amount of evidence presented to them.

"But Mr. Wickham," you keep saying over and over, "there has to be some rational person in authority over the Criminal Justice Systems (you're really chalking up on the mythical creatures today) who would consider this action by the prosecutors to be ludicrous and a miscarriage of justice."

Okay, maybe some mythical creatures really do have a basis in truth and someone steps up and says this case will go no further. What have our benevolent government officials gained by the police conducting what is essentially a "false arrest?" They've got:

Your full legal name and citizenship status.

Your Social Security account number.

Your Driver's License or government-issued Identification number.

The address of your residence and a phone number.

The full legal name of your spouse and and his/her citizenship status.

The full legal names of other family members that reside with you and their citizenship status.

The full legal name of your parents and their citizenship status.

Your date of birth.

The place of your birth

Your age.

Your height.

Your weight.

Your hair color.

Your eye color.

A listing of all your scars, missing limbs or digits, and any tattoos.

A listing of all your chronic illnesses and the medications you take to treat them.

Your treating physician's name, office address, and phone number.

Your place of employment, its address, its phone number, and your supervisor's name.

Your spouse's place of employment, its address, and its phone number.

Your photograph (possibly now taken 3-dimensionally).

Your fingerprints.

And even a sample of your blood to test to see if you are HIV positive from which your DNA can be obtained.

All this information will be duly and digitally recorded and stored away in a government database in order to protect your privacy and will be accessible to absolutely no one except for every government employee in the world who has some connection to the world-wide "War Against Terrorism," which essentially is every government employee anywhere at any time. Though they have not earned as much money from you as they would have with a conviction, they will certainly obtain nearly as much power over you, and over those you know, just the same.

"But Mr. Wickham," there you go saying that again, "freedom-loving people (now that's an endangered species) all across this country will not stand for this. It can't happen here. This is America; the "Land of the Free!"

That objection I will just put in that file I have titled, "They can make 'em put safety belts in our cars but they can't make us wear 'em!" This is the process of evolution - one small change at one small interval of time always Progressing farther and farther until, just like the tortoise in the race with the hare, someone gets what they want by wearing down the resistance.

The pot is starting to boil. Frog soup anyone?


  1. OGG, I enjoy your "Musing's" every chance I get! Keep em coming and thank you!

  2. Thank y'all for the kind words. I'm trying to knock out as much as I can that obligations to family and the farm allow. What I need is a keypad that works from telekinesis...

  3. There was no period in the American history that was entirely free from government officials abusing their powers. Is there evidence that the reaction to 9/11 was somehow exceptional? For comparison, after Pearl Harbor an entire community of Japanese Americans was locked up in concentration camps.

    1. Not "exceptional," just a notch higher than the one before it. Remember, when boiling frogs, it's one degree at a time or the frog jumps out of the pot...

  4. Hi & thank You for your fine post's on DB. Let the internet reformation shine !

    Bren. Cork,Ire-land !

    1. Thank you for the kind words. And, indeed, let it shine...