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Orwell's Total Surveillance State is almost here

George Orwell, in his novel 1984, described a total surveillance state in which nobody was ever outside the reach of "Big Brother" government's eyes and ears.

Don't be surprised when the military hands over weaponized unmanned drones to your local police department for "domestic crime fighting" purposes.
AFP/Getty + public domain

Today...

In a recent article Liberty Crier founder Trevor Lyman expressed his concern that the Washington Post compares people who care about their privacy with criminals.

The Post Article describes Skype as "the online phone service long favored by political dissidents, criminals and others eager to communicate beyond the reach of governments."

Lyman rightly asks what's wrong with that since "we all 'communicate beyond the reach of governments' in the privacy of our own homes and in public places" and we're not criminals.

But not, apparently, for long.

Not only are those "public places" increasingly blanketed by surveillance cameras of every kind but they're creeping into our private lives as well.

"Black box" event data recorders (EDR) capable of recording and storing such information as speed, braking, seatbelt use and airbag deployment have been installed on our cars since the 1990s.

"Data collected by the recorders is increasingly showing up in lawsuits, criminal cases and high-profile accidents," reports an AP article, but our spying-obsessed government wants to expand data collection to include as many as 30 additional types of data while "Engineers have identified more than 80 data points that might be useful."

But "useful" to whom, and for what?

How long do we have before data recorders, like black boxes in aircraft, will be required to monitor our conversations? Someday we'll tell our spouse while driving, "I don't much like our current president" and get pulled over for "terroristic conspiracy."

And our homes are next according to recently scandalized former CIA Director David Petraeus last March. According to a Slate article our "smart appliances" connected to the Internet "could someday be used by the CIA to track individuals" through technologies such as "radio-frequency identification, sensor networks, tiny embedded servers, and energy harvesters."

And we're barely in the beginning stages of fulltime aerial surveillance from unmanned drones.

With anyone who goes "off the grid" already considered a criminal is it really farfetched to imagine SWAT-operated militarized drones shooting at us some day?

Concerned readers should constantly monitor Sheila Dean, the Libertarian News Examiner's special correspondent on national ID and surveillance issues at her BeatTheChip website.

She's currently tracking Real ID compliant driver's licenses, video surveillance in San Antonio, Texas elementary schools and much more.

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Read more Reed: North Texas news and commentary at Dallas Libertarian Examiner.
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