The U.S. is Now an "Endemic Surveillance Society"

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birdseye-cutout.jpgPass the Freedom Fries!  The French are still filmed, monitored and intercepted less than we are, but barely. Their status also "deteriorated" in 2007.

The U.S. has been downgraded from "Extensive Surveillance Society" to "Endemic Surveillance Society," according to Privacy International's 2007 International Privacy Ranking released on Friday. We now share the "Endemic" distinction with China, Russia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, and the UK. I should have expected the following, really, after recently letting go of my email privacy delusions:

In terms of statutory protections and privacy enforcement, the US is the worst ranking country in the democratic world. In terms of overall privacy protection the United States has performed very poorly, being out-ranked by both India and the Philippines.
It's worth noting that Canadian and EU papers have reported on this, but I have yet to find coverage in a U.S. newspaper. It's up to you and me to let our friends and family and presidential candidates know that we rank at the bottom when it comes to:
  • Legal protections
  • Privacy enforcement
  • Use of identity cards and biometrics
  • Visual surveillance
  • Communications interception
  • Workplace monitoring
  • Medical, financial and movement surveillance
  • Border and trans-border issues
Take a gander at the report for a thorough explanation. Then think about where you'd like to live!

Romania and Canada are among those in the best shape (though Canada is slipping due in part to cooperation with U.S. data gathering and border programs). Greece stands out as a the only country with "adequate safeguards" against abuse.

Hmm... I could live on Kalamata olives... What did you say? You'd like some "freedom feta" with that? Yum.

~~ Privacy International Leading surveillance societies in the EU and the World 2007
     Canada better than U.S., U.K. at protecting citizens' privacy: study

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10 Comments

wanealy Author Profile Page said:

This is really terrific work, Kyeann. If the world made sense, you'd be the one getting columns in our newspapers instead of the shills we have writing now. Keep up the good, needful work. I'll try to send more traffic your way and also let people know about these issues. Consider yourself dugg. :) Peace.

b4upoo said:


I have issues with privacy only to the extent that I want exactly the same right to snoop and collect information as the government has.
Frankly a world of total, full time surveillance, in which every citizen could see the entire life and hear every conversation that has ever taken place might be a better world for all of us.
Many who suffer shame might find relief in knowing that many others have far worse issues, Crime would be stopped completely, Rogue teachers would be caught in the act along with child molesters and drug users.
The funny thing is that we are about to have lie detectors that are fool proof enough to allow in court cases. I'll bet the public will have a fit when they can no longer lie under oath.

Waldo said:

Resist. Pure and simple.

Trash govt. outposts, topple powerline towers, smash thru fences, steal mail, become one with them and we'll see how effective they are.

mossydog said:

b4uthereweremonkeysmarterthanu, who the hell would want to live in your Orwellian society. What compels you to want to know what everybody is saying or thinking. I've got an idea why don't you and Bush mind your own goddamn business.

Ethan said:

In the 2007 International Privacy Ranking, the lower extremes (I guess the most private) are never met on the scale provided. Are they suggesting that no country meets their requirements? The other extremity (I suppose most invasive) is met on numerous occasions. It seems to me, they should zero out, if not normalize the scale. Nevertheless, this wouldn't change the order of rankings. It would somewhat diminish the contrasts, giving a more realistic (and balanced) report. However, I don't believe this is their goal.

adam said:

With new technology comes the need for new laws. A perfect example is the data mining that is taking place on all telephone and internet traffic in the united states. It falls into a gray area and should be addressed, but won't be since faimly values and 911 are the name of the game.

lynx said:

i included a link to their report in my most recent blog post as well, we are well on our way to fascism her e in america and i'm becoming less and less hopeful that change is even possible as time goes on. we are now living in the biggest, strongest, most dangerous fascist nation in world history. and there doewsn't appear to be any obvious end in sight.

the only reason german fascism got toppled was because hitler had the poor sense to attack nations that were capable of ganging up and fighting back, as long as america sticks to it's established trend and just picks on small nations incapable of defending themselves there's not much that can really challenge the empire - the change definitely isn't going to come from within. americans who fight back as "Waldo" suggests get labeled "terrorists" and locked up. Just ask Rob los Ricos or Jeff Luers. Hell, you could even ask folks like Josh Wolf and Sherman Austin who didn't do anything except publish information about the ongoing resistance to empire and each ended up in jail for over a year.

At this point i think it's probably too late. americans are - by and large - good people, but they're too scared or too apathetic or both to stand up for their rights and demand change. And the minority that does stand up is only going to put up with getting our asses kicked by the pigs while the rest of the country does nothing for so long before saying "fuck it" and giving up. For me, that time is just about over, I'm sick of getting beat on by cops at protests, sick of being lied about and demonized in the news, sick of having my friends arrested and jailed on bogus charges, and sick to death of politicians from both major parties who call people like me extremists for daring to stand up for human rights and the liberties that we are all supposedly garaunteed in the constitution.

Fuck America, I'm done. as soon as I can find another country that'll accept me as a legal immigrant I'm gone and I suggest you all do the same. it's time to get out while we still can. and maybe, if all the atheists and radicals and free thinkers and intelligent folks who value liberty and know that freedom is more then a buzzword leave, america will collapse on it's own dead weight. we're certainly not doing the rest of the world any favors by staying here - just imagine how differently WWII would have gone if thousands of German scientists hadn't fled the nazi's early on and lent their know-how to the American war effort.

jim sadler said:

About 95% of the folks who whine about privacy simply want to take dope without fear of being caught. Then we have the married folks who want to have affairs and lie to their partners. Throw in those that are thieves and tax cheats or those who commit fraud and you have the entire privacy group pretty well bagged and tagged.
Why shouldn't society demand that people be transparent and truthful to others. I've heard the rants from people who want medical insurance and feel that if there were medical records they could never get insurance. Therefore they really want to deceive the insurance companies in order to lower their expenses. I've even known of people who were covered by insurance that went to hospital with false I.D.s so that their insurance wouldn't find out they were ill and raise their rates. Privacy and crime walk hand in hand. b4upoo

jeff h said:

privacy is a human goddamn right. those who use fear and manipulation of facts (jim sadler) to justify such invasions are completely missing the point. I reject emphatically your ideas of a brave new america, so glad i don't have to live there. we are now officially living in a distopic future.

Upstate Guy said:

Jim you ignorant slut. Your arguments are flawed at the most deepest level and can be disproven easily by simply looking at your outgoing mail. Do you use envelopes when you send something through the mail? Why? What have you got to hide?

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Six Hours A Week Is:

A coping strategy, advocacy outlet, and form of protection. My life has been nearly destroyed by the unconstitutional practices of politically/socially-motivated private intelligence contractors and the corruption and cronyism that allow them. Apparently because I speak out in ways that prioritize the little guy and human and environmental health above gargantuan profit margins, and believe that facts are as important as PR spin, I was someone who had to be completely discredited. In 2007, after a few months of a surreal and relentless invasion of privacy and dignity, I started to spend six hours each week researching, communicating about, and advocating legal and ethical responses to assaults on our shared democratic and republican ideals. For most of that time I was writing from the perspective of someone whose life was manipulated into a constant state of terror and emergency. In 2010, many of the array of entrapment attempts seem to have failed and it seems no longer possible to get away with such excessive, obvious harassment and overt interference. As we take more practical steps to address what has been allowed to happen to my family, we do expect to see some more harassment and intimidation. But I should be able to chronicle it from a more measured perspective, rather than that of someone in constant fear. Part of me would like to go back and delete earlier posts, because even I find them hard to relate to in some ways. But this blog has been one of our only forms of protection as everyone in any official capacity ignored the truth and tried to spin and frame us into the troublemakers and perpetrators of one form or another. So I leave it up as a form of protection, a record of what has occurred, and (with luck) the account of our way back to credibility and some form of legitimate justice. All content on this site is property of Kyeann Sayer. All rights reserved.

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This page contains a single entry by Kyeann published on December 30, 2007 3:40 AM.

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