Someone call Nixon’s plumbers. We need them again.

Summary: Marcus Ranum looks to our past — the government’s history of surveillance — to see the future which the government’s vast surveillance machinery makes possible, and perhaps will help bring into being.

Article deleted at author’s request.


Some of the latest revelations about NSA cyber-surveillance – and cyber-war

The Secret War“, Wired, 12 June 2013 – “Infiltration. Sabotage. Mayhem. For years four-star General Keith Alexander has been building a secret army capable of launching devastating cyberattacks. Now it’s ready to unleash Hell.”  To future generations the US might be best known as the nation first using (perhaps the only one using) nukes and cyberwar. Perhaps as a mad dog, eventually restrained by coalition of nations.

Google details how it hands over data to federal officials“, Washington Post, 12 June 2013 — Excerpt:

Immediately after PRISM was publicly reported, Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft and others denied giving the government “direct access” to their servers.

Since then, The Post has reported that executives at some of the participating Silicon Valley companies, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, have acknowledged the program’s existence. According to a NSA inspector general’s report obtained by The Post, PRISM allowed “collection managers [to send] content tasking instructions directly to equipment installed at company-controlled locations” rather than directly to company servers.

For More Information

See yesterday’s post for links to a wide range of information about the surveillance of US citizens.

Posts about these revelations, and what they show about America:

Posts about America, today and tomorrow:

  1. America is the new Rome. Late Republican Rome (not the best of times), 13 October 2011
  2. What will replace the Constitution in Americans’ hearts? Let’s check for Fascism., 29 March 2012
  3. A look at the future of the Republic: we will choose leaders that we trust, 14 May 2012 — Part one.
  4. A look at the future of the Republic: we will choose leaders that we trust, not the ones we need (part 2), 15 May 2012
  5. More evidence that the military is slowly cutting itself off from civilian control, 15 July 2012
  6. Gallup’s polls show who we trust, pointing to a dark future for our Republic, 15 August 2012
  7. We’ve worked through all 5 stages of grief for the Republic. Now, on to The New America!, 9 January 2013
  8. Voices from the past describe the coming New America, 1 February 2013



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