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Friday, May 19, 2006

"When will they round up the Bloggers...?"

Former AT&T technician Mark Klein may be our latest whistlebower-hero, along the lines of Clint Curtis. His insider's expose, as published in Wired magazine, is a must-read. A few samples:
In 2003 AT&T built "secret rooms" hidden deep in the bowels of its central offices in various cities, housing computer gear for a government spy operation which taps into the company's popular WorldNet service and the entire internet. These installations enable the government to look at every individual message on the internet and analyze exactly what people are doing.
The normal work force of unionized technicians in the office are forbidden to enter the "secret room," which has a special combination lock on the main door. The telltale sign of an illicit government spy operation is the fact that only people with security clearance from the National Security Agency can enter this room.
Klein's revelations (backed by documents and diagrams) should be matched against this OpEd News story by John McDonald, who tells us what's in it for AT&T:
According to Federal Elections Commission data analyzed by The Center for Responsive Politics, Telephone Utilities have given $6,762,966 to Republican Members of Congress since 2004 and more than $15 million since the 2000 election. How tough do you think the questions are going to be from a Republican Congress investigating the role of AT&T, BellSouth and Verizon in turning over the phone records of tens of millions of Americans to the NSA?

Meanwhile, AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth have given $511,955 to President Bush since his election in 2000, making him the top recipient of their political largess.
The pay-off for comes in the form of those NSA contracts, not to mention support for the attack on net neutrality.

Why the spying? To catch terrorists, we're told. And pedophiles. Terrorists and pedos: That's why they have to track every move you make on the internet. But the Administration cannot introduce any evidence derived from this surveillance in court. Doing so would open up a challenge to the program's constitutionality. Can't risk that.

So why the spying? The crushing of dissent. Blackmail. Intimidation. After Big Wedding II, constitutional questions simply won't matter.
Every day, it becomes a little clearer that the Bush administration is running roughshod over the civil rights and liberties of the American people. Cynically manipulating the events of 9/11 to crush any opposition, the Bush administration is engaged in an unprecedented effort to consolidate presidential power that threatens the very Democratic principals and institutions that have fostered a free America. What’s next, arresting journalists? When will they round up the Bloggers in their pajamas?
After the Big Crash, when we are trying to put together the pieces of our shattered economy, we need to decide what to do about the corporations that allowed it all to happen, for the sake of quick and easy profit.

Because, the Bush coup would not have been possible without the complicit support of a) Corporate America, and b) fundamentalist and evangelical Christians.

I suggest we begin a dialogue on these lines. Should we end the personhood status of corporations entirely? And what about the self-styled "Christians", who must bear the blame for legitimizing and backing the criminal syndicate that has destroyed America? How do we distinguish those churches from the traditional Methodist, Episcopalian, Presbyterian, etc? Can we, at all?

Along that line, I am beginning to believe that on balance, Jesus unleashed more horror on the world than good. I mean, weigh the benefit of his teachings against the Inquisition, the Crusades, the enslavement and massacre of so many indigenous peoples. Perhaps it is time for us to jettison Judeo/Christianity. And Islam, as well.

At the very least, we need to break corporate America into a thousand pieces and scatter it to the winds.

If we in fact survive the Big Crash at all.
Live free or die, I guess. Good luck, Joseph.
Will another shoe drop? Consider this: perhaps all of the data thefts from large companies is a part of this whole operation.. want to discredit a critic? Take their personal info (conveniently "stolen" from Choicepoint)and gin up an online identity and create a false electronic trail that shows the person as a pedophile or vistor of jihadist websites
They must be very much afraid ?
First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.

Pastor Martin
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