Home

Coronavirus vs. the Mass Surveillance State: Which Poses the Greater Threat?

1 Comment

John Whitehead’s Commentary

Coronavirus vs. the Mass Surveillance State: Which Poses the Greater Threat?

John Whitehead

“If, as it seems, we are in the process of becoming a totalitarian society in which the state apparatus is all-powerful, the ethics most important for the survival of the true, free, human individual would be: cheat, lie, evade, fake it, be elsewhere, forge documents, build improved electronic gadgets in your garage that’ll outwit the gadgets used by the authorities.”—Philip K. Dick

Emboldened by the citizenry’s inattention and willingness to tolerate its abuses, the government has weaponized one national crisis after another in order to expands its powers.

The war on terror, the war on drugs, the war on illegal immigration, asset forfeiture schemes, road safety schemes, school safety schemes, eminent domain: all of these programs started out as legitimate responses to pressing concerns and have since become weapons of compliance and control in the police state’s hands.

It doesn’t even matter what the nature of the crisis might be—civil unrest, the national emergencies, “unforeseen economic collapse, loss of functioning political and legal order, purposeful domestic resistance or insurgency, pervasive public health emergencies, and catastrophic natural and human disasters”—as long as it allows the government to justify all manner of government tyranny in the so-called name of national security.

Now we find ourselves on the brink of a possible coronavirus contagion.

I’ll leave the media and the medical community to speculate about the impact the coronavirus will have on the nation’s health, but how will the government’s War on the Coronavirus impact our freedoms?

For a hint of what’s in store, you can look to China—our role model for all things dystopian—where the contagion started.

In an attempt to fight the epidemic, the government has given its surveillance state apparatus—which boasts the most expansive and sophisticated surveillance system in the world—free rein. Thermal scanners using artificial intelligence (AI) have been installed at train stations in major cities to assess body temperatures and identify anyone with a fever. Facial recognition cameras and cell phone carriers track people’s movements constantly, reporting in real time to data centers that can be accessed by government agents and employers alike. And coded color alerts (red, yellow and green) sort people into health categories that correspond to the amount of freedom of movement they’re allowed: “Green code, travel freely. Red or yellow, report immediately.”

Mind you, prior to the coronavirus outbreak, the Chinese surveillance state had already been hard at work tracking its citizens through the use of some 200 million security cameras installed nationwide. Equipped with facial recognition technology, the cameras allow authorities to track so-called criminal acts, such as jaywalking, which factor into a person’s social credit score.

Social media credit scores assigned to Chinese individuals and businesses categorize them on whether or not they are “good” citizens. A real-name system—which requires people to use government-issued ID cards to buy mobile sims, obtain social media accounts, take a train, board a plane, or even buy groceries—coupled with social media credit scores ensures that those blacklisted as “unworthy” are banned from accessing financial markets, buying real estate or travelling by air or train. Among the activities that can get you labeled unworthy are taking reserved seats on trains or causing trouble in hospitals.

More

A New Kind of Tyranny: The Global State’s War on Those Who Speak Truth to Power

1 Comment

By John W. Whitehead
November 5, 2019

“What happens to Julian Assange and to Chelsea Manning is meant to intimidate us, to frighten us into silence. By defending Julian Assange, we defend our most sacred rights. Speak up now or wake up one morning to the silence of a new kind of tyranny. The choice is ours.”—John Pilger, investigative journalist

All of us are in danger.

In an age of prosecutions for thought crimes, pre-crime deterrence programs, and government agencies that operate like organized crime syndicates, there is a new kind of tyranny being imposed on those who dare to expose the crimes of the Deep State, whose reach has gone global.

The Deep State has embarked on a ruthless, take-no-prisoners, all-out assault on truth-tellers.

Activists, journalists and whistleblowers alike are being terrorized, traumatized, tortured and subjected to the fear-inducing, mind-altering, soul-destroying, smash-your-face-in tactics employed by the superpowers-that-be.

Take Julian Assange, for example.

Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks—a website that published secret information, news leaks, and classified media from anonymous sources—was arrested on April 11, 2019, on charges of helping U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning access and leak more than 700,000 classified military documents that portray the U.S. government and its military as reckless, irresponsible and responsible for thousands of civilian deaths.

Included among the leaked Manning material were the Collateral Murder video (April 2010), the Afghanistan war logs (July 2010), the Iraq war logs (October 2010), a quarter of a million diplomatic cables (November 2010), and the Guantánamo files (April 2011). More

American Apocalypse: The Government’s Plot to Destabilize the Nation Is Working

Leave a comment

The Rutherford Institute

By John W. Whitehead
August 21, 2019

“The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out … without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, intolerable.” — H. L. MenckenThe U.S. government is working hard to destabilize the nation.

No, this is not another conspiracy theory.

Although it is certainly not far-fetched to suggest that the government might be engaged in nefarious activities that run counter to the best interests of the American people, doing so will likely brand me a domestic terrorist under the FBI’s new classification system.

Observe for yourself what is happening right before our eyes.

Domestic terrorism fueled by government entrapment schemes. Civil unrest stoked to dangerous levels by polarizing political rhetoric. A growing intolerance for dissent that challenges the government’s power grabs. Police brutality tacitly encouraged by the executive branch, conveniently overlooked by the legislatures, and granted qualified immunity by the courts. A weakening economy exacerbated by government schemes that favor none but a select few. An overt embrace of domestic surveillance tactics if Congress goes along with the Trump Administration’s request to permanently re-authorize the NSA’s de-activated call records program. Heightened foreign tensions and blowback due to the military industrial complex’s profit-driven quest to police and occupy the globe.

The seeds of chaos are being sown, and it’s the U.S. government that will reap the harvest.

Mark my words, there’s trouble brewing.

Better yet, take a look at “Megacities: Urban Future, the Emerging Complexity,” a Pentagon training video created by the Army for U.S. Special Operations Command.

The training video is only five minutes long, but it says a lot about the government’s mindset, the way its views the citizenry, and the so-called “problems” that the government must be prepared to address in the near future through the use of martial law.

Even more troubling, however, is what this military video doesn’t say about the Constitution, about the rights of the citizenry, and about the dangers of locking down the nation and using the military to address political and social problems.

The training video anticipates that all hell will break loose by 2030—that’s barely ten short years away—but the future is here ahead of schedule.

READ MORE HERE

.

Who Inflicts the Most Gun Violence in America? The U.S. Government and Its Police Forces

3 Comments

 The Rutherford Institute

By John W. Whitehead
August 12, 2019

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“It is often the case that police shootings, incidents where law enforcement officers pull the trigger on civilians, are left out of the conversation on gun violence. But a police officer shooting a civilian counts as gun violence.

Every time an officer uses a gun against an innocent or an unarmed person contributes to the culture of gun violence in this country.”—Journalist Celisa Calacal

Yes, gun violence is a problem in America, although violent crime generally remains at an all-time low.

Yes, mass shootings are a problem in America, although while they are getting deadlier, they are not getting more frequent.

Yes, mentally ill individuals embarking on mass shooting sprees are a problem in America.

However, tighter gun control laws and so-called “intelligent” background checks fail to protect the public from the most egregious perpetrator of gun violence in America: the U.S. government.

Consider that five years after police shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old man in Ferguson, Missouri, there has been no relief from the government’s gun violence.

Here’s what we’ve learned about the government’s gun violence since Ferguson, according to The Washington Post: If you’re a black American, you’ve got a greater chance of being shot by police. If you’re an unarmed black man, you’re four times more likely to be killed by police than an unarmed white man. Most people killed by police are young men. Since 2015, police have shot and killed an average of 3 people per day. More than 2,500 police departments have shot and killed at least one person since 2015. And while the vast majority of people shot and killed by police are armed, their weapons ranged from guns to knives to toy guns.  READ MORE HERE:

Monsters with Human Faces: The Tyranny of the Police State Disguised as Law-and-Order

3 Comments

By John W. Whitehead
July 24, 2019

“But these weren’t the kind of monsters that had tentacles and rotting skin, the kind a seven-year-old might be able to wrap his mind around—they were monsters with human faces, in crisp uniforms, marching in lockstep, so banal you don’t recognize them for what they are until it’s too late.” ― Ransom Riggs, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children Enough already.

Enough with the distractions. Enough with the partisan jousting.

Enough with the sniping and name-calling and mud-slinging that do nothing to make this country safer or freer or more just.

We have let the government’s evil-doing, its abuses, power grabs, brutality, meanness, inhumanity, immorality, greed, corruption, debauchery and tyranny go on for too long.

We are approaching a reckoning.

This is the point, as the poet W. B. Yeats warned, when things fall apart and anarchy is loosed upon the world.

We have seen this convergence before in Hitler’s Germany, in Stalin’s Russia, in Mussolini’s Italy, and in Mao’s China: the rise of strongmen and demagogues, the ascendency of  over deep-seated principles, the warring nationalism that seeks to divide and conquer, the callous disregard for basic human rights and dignity, and the silence of people who should know better.

Yet no matter how many times the world has been down this road before, we can’t seem to avoid repeating the deadly mistakes of the past. This is not just playing out on a national and international scale. It is wreaking havoc at the most immediate level, as well, creating rifts and polarities within families and friends, neighborhoods and communities that keep the populace warring among themselves and incapable of presenting a united front in the face of the government’s goose-stepping despotism.

We are definitely in desperate need of a populace that can stand united against the government’s authoritarian tendencies.

Surely we can manage to find some common ground in the midst of the destructive, disrupting, diverting, discordant babble being beamed down at us by the powers-that-be? After all, there are certain self-evident truths—about the source of our freedoms, about the purpose of government, about how we expect to be treated by those we appoint to serve us in government offices, about what to do when the government abuses our rights and our trust, etc.—that we should be able to agree on, no matter how we might differ politically.  READ MORE HERE

Freedom Watch: The Rutherford Institute

Leave a comment

More

Freedom Watch • A Year in Prison for Criticizing Police; Police Kill Unarmed Naked Teen; Flashing Headlights To Warn Drivers MIGHT Be Protected Speech

Leave a comment

The Rutherford Institute

Your tax-deductible donations support The Rutherford Institute’s ongoing efforts to make the government play by the rules of the Constitution.

MAY 11, 2019

WHITEHEAD: ON THE ISSUES

D Is for a Dictatorship Disguised as a Democracy

Predator Cops, Guilty of Sex Crimes Against Women and Children, Are a Menace to Society

The Essence of Evil: Sex with Children Has Become Big Business in America

RUTHERFORD: ON THE FRONT LINES

Man Faces a Year in Prison for Criticizing Police

Gov’t Officials Arrest Disabled Veteran for Buying Canned Iced Tea, Bug Spray

Napping Not Allowed: Ban on Sleeping in Cars Could Allow Police to Seize Car Occupants, Vehicles and Carry Out Warrantless Searches

SUPPORT THE FIGHT FOR FREEDOM: DONATE TODAY

IN THE COURTS

The Supreme Court’s Majority Defends the Death Penalty

Wisconsin Supreme Court Upholds Gun Questions During Traffic Stops

Federal Judge Sides With Federal Government, Rules Mass Surveillance Can Remain Secret

Massachusetts Judge Says ATF Can Apply A Suspect’s Fingerprints To Unlock An IPhone

Federal Judge Says Flashing Headlights To Warn Drivers Of Hidden Cops MIGHT Be Protected Speech

PODCAST: FREEDOM UNDER FIRE

Freedom Under Fire is a free weekly podcast available on SoundCloud and iTunes.

Predator Cops Are a Menace to Society

The Essence of Evil: Sex with Children Has Become Big Business in America

Podcast Archive

VODCAST: ON TARGET

Vigilantes with a Badge: Warrior Cops Endanger Our Lives and Freedoms

TRI GIFT SHOP

Speak truth to power with these wardrobe staples and support The Rutherford Institute’s critical work while you’re at it!

T-SHIRT: The Rutherford Institute Classic Resistance
T-SHIRT: “Speak Truth to Power”

MUG: “Time to Wake Up!”
MUG: “Make American Free Again”

BOOK: Battlefield America: The War on the American People (Autographed by John W. Whitehead)

AMERICAN POLICE STATE

WATCH: Woman Goes Off on Montana Cops who Walked in Her Home Without a Warrant

Police In Oklahoma Kill Unarmed Naked Teen

Victims Say Domestic Abuse by Police Officers Goes Unpunished

The Growth of the American Police State

AMERICA AT WAR

US and China Account for Almost Half of World’s Military Spending

BEHIND BARS

John Kelly Joins Board of Company Operating Largest Shelter for Unaccompanied Migrant Children

People in Alabama Prisons Are Shackled to Buckets for Days on End

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATION

NATIONAL SECURITY

US Searches of Phones, Laptops at Airports Rising

Monthly Arrests at U.S.-Mexico Border Top 100,000

GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION

Police Officers Outran Misconduct, Felonies and Became Police Chiefs

Former Cop Sentenced to 9 Years for Selling Drugs Stolen by Corrupt Police Squad

WAR ON KIDS, FAMILY

Mother Arrested for Letting Child Take Lyft to School

A 9-Year-Old Boy Was Handcuffed. How Many Other Children Have Been?

After a False Accusation, Police and Child Services Forced a Family Apart for 7 Months

Man Who Kept Girl In Dog Cage, Sexually Assaulted Her Won’t Serve Prison Time

You Apparently Can’t Win A Drug War Without Sexually Abusing Kids And Murdering Parents

Arizona’s Department Of Child Safety Has A Pattern Of Sending SWAT Teams For ‘Medical Kidnapping’

SURVEILLANCE & PRIVACY

Amazon’s Facial-Recognition Technology Is Supercharging Local Police

Uber To Track Drivers And Passengers In Real-Time Using RapidSOS App

FREE SPEECH

Facebook Bans Far-Right Leaders for Being ‘Dangerous’

Offended By What Someone Said? Now You Can Report Them To Law Enforcement

Florida Man Arrested After Refusing to Remove Obscene Sticker From Window

TECHNOLOGY

Robots Edge Closer to Unloading Trucks in Amazon-Era Milestone

ECONOMY

Wealthy Elites Freak Out As Homeless Hordes Take Over West Coast Neighborhoods

RESISTANCE

Family Separation Protests Surveilled by Private Firm for DHS

Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: