Domestic Surveillance: October 2007 Archives

Creepy communications technology realities

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250px-Panopticon.jpgEver since I started using a cell phone, I've loved the sense of security it gives me. If I'm late or lost, I can call my dinner companion or a friendly operator. If the car breaks down, or there's another emergency, I have a lifeline in my purse.

GPS navigation has appealed for similar safety and security reasons. That woman on the OnStar commercials, who is so relieved when she's able to get help from a remote customer service god after she locks herself out of her car, is someone most of us would tend to identify with.

But there are ramifications to these technologies that we haven't discussed openly. We can assume that many who have been targeted as a result of anti-war or anti-administration affiliation have endured surveillance of the following varieties as an aspect of the widespread warrantless wiretapping abuse.
Did you know that law enforcement officials can demand that your cell phone company activate the microphone in your phone remotely? Your cell then becomes a roving microphone recording events around you whether or not the phone is on.  Additionally, cell phones track your location through communication with the nearest tower. As long as you have it with you and turned on, your location can be identified.

We're a top surveillance society?

birdseye-cutout.jpg"Home of the free"? Try "A little freer than Singapore".

I don't see any evidence on the news or in my daily interactions that most U.S. residents realize that ours is one of the top surveillance states in the developed world. I didn't know it myself until I stumbled upon  a 2006 Privacy International report christening us an "Extensive Surveillance Society", a distinction we share with Thailand and the Philippines.  We're just behind China, Russia, Singapore, Malaysia and the U.K., all of which are "Endemic Surveillance Societies."

Don't you think if more us knew we were living in such a relatively restrictive society, we would be demanding our privacy back? The French are freer than we are, for goodness sake!  Shouldn't the Freedom Fries demographic be up in arms?

~~ Privacy International

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.