Tuesday, November 29, 2011
"A fundamental shift in our culture has taken place. The American people have eagerly given up huge chunks of liberty and freedom in exchange for vague promises of increased security."
If you live in the United States of America, you live in a giant prison where liberty and freedom are slowly being strangled to death. In this country, the control freaks that run things are obsessed with watching, tracking, monitoring and recording virtually everything that we do. Nothing is private anymore. Everything that you do on the Internet is being monitored. All of your phone calls are being monitored. In fact, if law enforcement authorities suspect that you have done something wrong, they will use your cell phone microphone to listen to you even when you think your cell phone is turned off. In many areas of the country, when you get into your car automated license plate readers track you wherever you go, and in many major cities when you are walking on the streets a vast network of security cameras and "smart street lights" are constantly watching you and listening to whatever you say. The TSA is setting up "internal checkpoints" all over the nation, Homeland Security is encouraging all of us to report any "suspicious activity" that our neighbors are involved in and the federal government is rapidly developing "pre-crime" technology that will flag us as "potential terrorists" if we display any signs of nervousness. If you are flagged as a "potential terrorist", the U.S. military can arrest you and detain you for the rest of your life without ever having to charge you with anything. Yes, the United States of America is rapidly being turned into a "Big Brother" prison grid, and most Americans are happily going along with it.
The sad thing is that this used to be "the land of the free and the home of the brave".
So what in the world happened?
A fundamental shift in our culture has taken place. The American people have eagerly given up huge chunks of liberty and freedom in exchange for vague promises of increased security.
Our country is now run by total control freaks and paranoia has become standard operating procedure.
We were told that the terrorists hate our liberties and our freedoms, and that we needed to fight the terrorists so that we could keep our liberties and our freedoms.
But instead, the government keeps taking away all of our liberties and our freedoms.
How in the world does that make any sense?
Have the terrorists won?
As a country, we have moved so far in the direction of communist China, the USSR and Nazi Germany that it is almost impossible to believe.
Yes, turning the United States of America into a giant prison may make us all slightly safer, but what kind of life is this?
Do we want to be dead while we are still alive?
Is this the price that we want to pay in order to feel slightly safer?
Where are the millions of Americans that still yearn to breathe free air?
America is supposed to be a land teeming with people thirsting for independence. For example, "Live Free or Die" is supposedly the official motto of the state of New Hampshire.
But instead, the motto of most Americans seems to be "live scared and die cowering".
We don't have to live like this.
Yes, bad things are always going to happen. No amount of security is ever going to be able to keep us 100% safe.
We need to remember that a very high price was paid for our liberty and we should not give it up so easily.
As one very famous American once said, when we give up liberty for security we deserve neither.
The following are 30 signs that the United States of America is being turned into a giant prison....
#1 A new bill that is going through the U.S. Senate would allow the U.S. military to arrest American citizens and hold them indefinitely without trial. This new law was recently discussed in an article posted on the website of the New American....
In what may be a tale too bizarre to be believed by millions of Americans, the U.S. Senate appears ready to pass a bill that will designate the entire earth, including the United States and its territories, one all-encompassing “battlefield” in the global “war on terror” and authorize the detention of Americans suspected of terrorist ties indefinitely and without trial or even charges being filed that would necessitate a trial.
U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham is a big supporter of the bill, and he says that it would "basically say in law for the first time that the homeland is part of the battlefield".
According to the PPJ Gazette, the following are three things that this new law would do....
1) Explicitly authorize the federal government to indefinitely imprison without charge or trial American citizens and others picked up inside and outside the United States;
(2) Mandate military detention of some civilians who would otherwise be outside of military control, including civilians picked up within the United States itself; and
(3) Transfer to the Department of Defense core prosecutorial, investigative, law enforcement, penal, and custodial authority and responsibility now held by the Department of Justice.
#2 U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman is asking Google to install a "terrorist button" on all Blogger.com blogs so that readers can easily flag "terrorist content" for authorities.
#3 Most Americans have no idea how sophisticated the "Big Brother" prison grid has become. For example, in Washington D.C. the movements of every single car are tracked using automated license plate readers (ALPRs). The following comes from a recent Washington Post article....
More than 250 cameras in the District and its suburbs scan license plates in real time, helping police pinpoint stolen cars and fleeing killers. But the program quietly has expanded beyond what anyone had imagined even a few years ago.
With virtually no public debate, police agencies have begun storing the information from the cameras, building databases that document the travels of millions of vehicles.
Nowhere is that more prevalent than in the District, which has more than one plate-reader per square mile, the highest concentration in the nation. Police in the Washington suburbs have dozens of them as well, and local agencies plan to add many more in coming months, creating a comprehensive dragnet that will include all the approaches into the District.
#4 In some American schools, RFID chips are now being used to monitor the attendance and movements of children while they are at school. The following is how one article recently described a program that has just been instituted at a preschool in California....
Upon arriving in the morning, according to the Associated Press, each student at the CCC-George Miller preschool will don a jersey with a stitched in RFID chip. As the kids go about the business of learning, sensors in the school will record their movements, collecting attendance for both classes and meals. Officials from the school have claimed they're only recording information they're required to provide while receiving federal funds for their Headstart program.
#5 Increasingly, incidents of misbehavior at many U.S. schools are being treated as very serious crimes. For example, when a little girl kissed a little boy at one Florida elementary school recently, it was considered to be a "possible sex crime" and the police were called out.
#6 But what happened to one very young student in Stockton, California earlier this year was even worse....
Earlier this year, a Stockton student was handcuffed with zip ties on his hands and feet, forced to go to the hospital for a psychiatric evaluation and was charged with battery on a police officer. That student was 5 years old.
#7 In the United States today, police are trained to respond to even the smallest crimes with extreme physical force. For example, one grandfather in Arizona was recently filmed laying unconscious in a pool of his own blood after police rammed his head into the flood inside a Wal-Mart on Black Friday night. It was thought that he was shoplifting, but it turns out that he says that he was just trying to tuck a video game away so other crazed shoppers would not grab it out of his hands.
#8 Did you know that the government actually sets up fake cell phone towers that can intercept your cell phone calls? The following is how a recent Wired article described these "stingrays"....
You make a call on your cellphone thinking the only thing standing between you and the recipient of your call is your carrier’s cellphone tower. In fact, that tower your phone is connecting to just might be a boobytrap set up by law enforcement to ensnare your phone signals and maybe even the content of your calls.
So-called stingrays are one of the new high-tech tools that authorities are using to track and identify you. The devices, about the size of a suitcase, spoof a legitimate cellphone tower in order to trick nearby cellphones and other wireless communication devices into connecting to the tower, as they would to a real cellphone tower.
The government maintains that the stingrays don’t violate Fourth Amendment rights, since Americans don’t have a legitimate expectation of privacy for data sent from their mobile phones and other wireless devices to a cell tower.
#9 U.S. border agents are allowed by law to search any laptop being brought into the United States without even needing any reason to do so.
#10 In the United States of America, everyone is a "potential terrorist". According to FBI Director Robert Mueller, "homegrown terrorists" represent as big a threat to American national security as al-Qaeda does.
#11 Most Americans are not that concerned about the Patriot Act, but that might change if they understood that the federal government has a "secret interpretation" of what the Patriot Act really means. U.S. Senator Ron Wyden says that the U.S. government interprets the Patriot Act much more "broadly" than the general public does....
"We’re getting to a gap between what the public thinks the law says and what the American government secretly thinks the law says."
#12 The FBI is now admittedly recording Internet talk radio programs all over the United States. The following comes from a recent article by Mark Weaver of WMAL.com....
If you call a radio talk show and get on the air, you might be recorded by the FBI.
The FBI has awarded a $524,927 contract to a Virginia company to record as much radio news and talk programming as it can find on the Internet.
The FBI says it is not playing big brother by policing the airwaves, but rather seeking access to what airs as potential evidence.
#13 The federal government has decided that what you and I share with one another on Facebook and on Twitter could be a threat to national security. According to a recent Associated Press article, the Department of Homeland Security will soon be "gleaning information from sites such as Twitter and Facebook for law enforcement purposes".
#14 What you say on your cell phone is never private. The truth is that that the FBI can demand to see your cell phone data whenever it wants. In addition, according to CNET News the FBI can remotely activate the microphone on your cell phone and listen to whatever you are saying....
The FBI appears to have begun using a novel form of electronic surveillance in criminal investigations: remotely activating a mobile phone's microphone and using it to eavesdrop on nearby conversations.
The technique is called a "roving bug," and was approved by top U.S. Department of Justice officials for use against members of a New York organized crime family who were wary of conventional surveillance techniques such as tailing a suspect or wiretapping him.
#15 In some areas of the country, law enforcement authorities are pulling data out of cell phones for no reason whatsoever. According to the ACLU, state police in Michigan are now using "extraction devices" to download data from the cell phones of motorists that they pull over. This is taking place even if the motorists that are pulled over are not accused of doing anything wrong.
The following is how a recent article on CNET News described the capabilities of these "extraction devices"....
The devices, sold by a company called Cellebrite, can download text messages, photos, video, and even GPS data from most brands of cell phones. The handheld machines have various interfaces to work with different models and can even bypass security passwords and access some information.
#16 The federal government has become so paranoid that they have been putting GPS tracking devices on the vehicles of thousands of people that have not even been charged with committing any crimes. The following is a short excerpt from a recent Wired magazine article about this issue....
The 25-year-old resident of San Jose, California, says he found the first one about three weeks ago on his Volvo SUV while visiting his mother in Modesto, about 80 miles northeast of San Jose. After contacting Wired and allowing a photographer to snap pictures of the device, it was swapped out and replaced with a second tracking device. A witness also reported seeing a strange man looking beneath the vehicle of the young man’s girlfriend while her car was parked at work, suggesting that a tracking device may have been retrieved from her car.
Then things got really weird when police showed up during a Wired interview with the man.
The young man, who asked to be identified only as Greg, is one among an increasing number of U.S. citizens who are finding themselves tracked with the high-tech devices.
The Justice Department has said that law enforcement agents employ GPS as a crime-fighting tool with “great frequency,” and GPS retailers have told Wired that they’ve sold thousands of the devices to the feds.
#17 New high-tech street lights that are being funded by the federal government and that are being installed all over the nation can also be used as surveillance cameras, can be used by the DHS to make "security announcements" and can even be used to record personal conversations. The following is from a recent article by Paul Joseph Watson for Infowars.com....
Federally-funded high-tech street lights now being installed in American cities are not only set to aid the DHS in making “security announcements” and acting as talking surveillance cameras, they are also capable of “recording conversations,” bringing the potential privacy threat posed by ‘Intellistreets’ to a whole new level.
#18 If you choose to protest in the streets of America today, there is a good chance that you will be brutalized. All over the United States law enforcement authorities have been spraying pepper spray directly into the faces of unarmed protesters in recent weeks.
#19 In many areas of the United States today, you will be arrested if you do not produce proper identification for the police. In the old days, "your papers please" was a phrase that was used to use to mock the tyranny of Nazi Germany. But now all of us are being required to be able to produce "our papers" for law enforcement authorities at any time. For example, a 21-year-old college student named Samantha Zucker was recently arrested and put in a New York City jail for 36 hours just because she could not produce any identification for police.
#20 According to blogger Alexander Higgins, students in kindergarten and the 1st grade in the state of New Jersey are now required by law to participate "in monthly anti-terrorism drills". The following is an excerpt from a letter that he recently received from the school where his child attends....
Each month a school must conduct one fire drill and one security drill which may be a lockdown, bomb threat, evacuation, active shooter, or shelter-in place drill. All schools are now required by law to implement this procedure.
So who in the world ever decided that it would be a good idea for 1st grade students to endure "lockdown" and "active shooter" drills?
To get an idea of what these kinds of drills are like, just check out this video.
#21 With all of the other problems that we are having all over the nation, you would think that authorities would not be too concerned about little kids that are trying to sell cups of lemonade. But sadly, over the past year police have been sent in to shut down lemonade stands run by children all over the United States.
#22 The federal government has decided to invest a significant amount of time, money and energy raiding organic farms. The following example comes from Natural News....
It is the latest case of extreme government food tyranny, and one that is sure to have you reeling in anger and disgust. Health department officials recently conducted a raid of Quail Hollow Farm, an organic community supported agriculture (CSA) farm in southern Nevada, during its special "farm to fork" picnic dinner put on for guests -- and the agent who arrived on the scene ordered that all the fresh, local produce and pasture-based meat that was intended for the meal be destroyed with bleach.
#23 It is an absolute disgrace that all of us (including grandmothers and young children) must either go through body scanners that reveal the intimate details of our naked bodies or endure "enhanced pat-downs" during which our genitals will be touched before we are allowed to get on an airplane.
It is also an absolute disgrace that the American people are putting up with this.
#24 Invasive TSA security techniques are not just for airports anymore. Now, TSA "VIPR teams" are actively conducting random inspections at bus stations and on interstate highways all over the United States. For example, the following comes from a local news report down in Tennessee....
You're probably used to seeing TSA's signature blue uniforms at the airport, but now agents are hitting the interstates to fight terrorism with Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response (VIPR).
"Where is a terrorist more apt to be found? Not these days on an airplane more likely on the interstate," said Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security Commissioner Bill Gibbons.
Tuesday Tennessee was first to deploy VIPR simultaneously at five weigh stations and two bus stations across the state.
TSA "VIPR teams" now conduct approximately 8,000 "unannounced security screenings" a year at subway stations, bus terminals, ports and highway rest stops.
#25 More than a million hotel television sets all over America are now broadcasting propaganda messages from the Department of Homeland Security promoting the "See Something, Say Something" campaign. In essence, the federal government wants all of us to become "informants" and to start spying on one another constantly. The following comes from an article posted by USA Today....
Starting today, the welcome screens on 1.2 million hotel television sets in Marriott, Hilton, Sheraton, Holiday Inn and other hotels in the USA will show a short public service announcement from DHS. The 15-second spot encourages viewers to be vigilant and call law enforcement if they witness something suspicious during their travels.
#26 Certain "types" of American citizens are being labeled as potential threats in official U.S. government documents. An unclassified Department of Homeland Security report published a couple years ago entitled "Right-wing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment" claims that a belief in Bible prophecy "could motivate extremist individuals and groups to stockpile food, ammunition and weapons." The report goes on to state that such people are potentially dangerous.
#27 Back on February 20, 2009, the State of Missouri issued a report entitled "MIAC Strategic Report: The Modern Militia Movement". That report warned that the following types of people may be potential terrorists....
*those that are against illegal immigration
*those that consider "the New World Order" to be a threat
*those that have a negative view of the United Nations
#28 As I have written about previously, a very disturbing document that Oath Keepers has obtained shows that the FBI is now instructing store owners to report many new forms of "suspicious activity" to them. According to the document, "suspicious activity" now includes the following....
*paying with cash
*missing a hand or fingers
*making "extreme religious statements"
*purchasing weatherproofed ammunition or match containers
*purchasing meals ready to eat
*purchasing night vision devices, night flashlights or gas masks
Do any of those "signs of suspicious activity" apply to you?
#29 Soon you may get labeled as a "potential terrorist" if you are just feeling a little nervous. A new "pre-crime" technology system that is currently being tested by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will soon be in use all over the nation. It is called "Future Attribute Screening Technology" (FAST), and it is very frightening. The following description of this new program comes from an article in the London Telegraph....
Using cameras and sensors the "pre-crime" system measures and tracks changes in a person's body movements, the pitch of their voice and the rhythm of their speech.
It also monitors breathing patterns, eye movements, blink rate and alterations in body heat, which are used to assess an individual's likelihood to commit a crime.
The Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST) programme is already being tested on a group of government employees who volunteered to act as guinea pigs.
#30 The truth is that nobody puts more people into prison than America does. The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world and the largest total prison population on the entire globe.
To read about some of the crazy things that the control freaks running things have planned for the future, just check out this article by Natural News: "10 outlandish things the 'scientific' controllers have in mind for you in the near future".
Once again, despite all of this outrageous "security", it is inevitable that a lot of really bad things are going to happen in the United States in the years ahead.
When there are incidents of violence, it is also inevitable that there will be calls for even more "Big Brother" security measures.
We are going to be caught in a never ending spiral of tyranny where the "solution" is always even tighter security.
Eventually, we will have lost all of our liberties and freedoms, and we will probably be even less safe than we are today.
Do not be deceived. We could put a soldier on every corner, a video camera in every room of every home and an RFID chip in every citizen but that would not make us "safe".
Every single lawmaker that is backing these laws which strip our liberties and freedoms away deserves to be voted out of office.
If you love the United States of America, please stand up and say something while you still can.
Please use this article and other articles like it as tools. Share them with your friends and your family. If we can get enough people to wake up, perhaps there is still enough time to turn the direction of this country around.
Will the final chapters of the history of the United States of America be mentioned in the same breath as communist China, the USSR and Nazi Germany, or will the final chapters of the history of the United States of America be the greatest chapters of all?
The choice, America, is up to you.