From Pine View Farm

One Chip at a Time 3

Leonard Pitts, Jr.:

People think tyranny will be imposed at the point of a gun. Paranoids look up in search of black helicopters. Meanwhile, the architecture of totalitarianism is put into place all around them, surveillance apparatus so intrusive as to stagger the imagination of Orwell himself.

The point is not that one has nothing to hide. The point is that whatever you have is none of the government’s business absent probable cause and a warrant. The point is that one should never repose unfettered power with the state.

We should know this, yet we fall for the same seductive con every time: We are afraid, but the state says it can make us safe. And all it will take is the surrender of a few small freedoms.

Read the rest.



  1. George Smith

    June 14, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    He’s getting at the bigger picture — when fascism comes it arrives in a form unique to the nation. It’s the mark of stupid people who make comparisons to the Third Reich or the Soviet Union. Such people, and there are many, have no real idea of the details in these places, either, they just know it from fairy tales and B-A-A-D. America’s fascism is unique to the US condition, it’s very corporate and service industrialized. You retain the freedom to shop, if you have money. Corporate America is free to prey upon you in all other things, be it from banking to national security contractors keeping you “safe.” You have the freedom to shout and complain and say whatever you want on Facebook and Twitter and then vote for more of it or dumbly answer a poll that, yes, you have no problem with universal spying because you don’t have the nerve to say anything else to the pollster, lest you be perceived as someone, even anonymously, who might be with the traitors and terrorists. Polls in a place that isn’t really a democracy anymore, and where the polity is characterized by a high degree of individual stupidity and apathy, don’t mean a lot in terms of wisdom.

  2. Frank

    June 14, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    Jesus.  You sound even more depressed than I am.

  3. George Smith

    June 15, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    It’s because I am.