In a recent article at Magic City by Steven Shamrak titled: True Respect for Democracy Mr. Shamrak, who grew up in the Soviet Union but now lives in Australia and publishes The Shamrak Report, made some pertinent remarks about democracy.
- Every member of Soviet society was an active or silent participant of this dehumanisation machinery which affected 270 million people... Democracy demands free expression of opinion and accountability of the leadership... [In Russia, democracy] was lost because the public allowed self-serving opportunists to take over their lives!
Having lived in China for more than a decade, I have a totally new perspective of life in the democratic west and a totally new and realistic perspective on political propaganda usage. A few days ago I was sent this link to a video titled: "Stop Watching Us." The video is about NSA spying on Americans and its speakers include many high profile people.
|Video Capture from "Stop Watching Us"|
There are actually quite a number of issues involved in a discussion of National Security measures, only one of which is the concept of 'personal privacy'. The reality is that governments must do their best to keep their countries safe and this leads to two issues, one of which is 'how best' to protect the nation and the second is that of 'abuse of power.'
It's a hellish issue with no clear cut or simple answers but there is one simple clear cut 'word' that explains the reason for all the troubles that have arisen in this issue of National Security - TECHNOLOGY! To quote on person in correspondence with me on this issue:
We think we are very advanced with amazing new technologies being invented almost every day while our very basic human rights continue to degrade further and further. What good is all this amazing technology when it is used to easily and efficiently spy, track and log our every minute of the day activity. What good is all this when one day it falls into the wrong hands.
It has been my opinion for quite some time now that this world is not getting any better. Exactly the opposite. Technology just makes this world a much more dangerous and scary place to be. Cameras everywhere you go, cameras on almost every road pinging drivers for doing 2-3kms above the speed limit, Airports security nightmares, drones in the air, sea and soon land.
I'm starting to think that the movie Terminator about a machine taking over is not that far off after all. We already have machines tracking our every move (mobile phones are like very advanced tracking devices).
Our obsession with security will soon come back to haunt us all...
|Video Capture from "Stop Watching Us"|
As I have already stated, I live in the People's Republic of China, and for the last 18 months I have had a lot of trouble with the internet so I switched my security to Norton's and what a difference it has made. Did you know that Norton's blocks about 80 actions performed by Google on your computer? Google is one of those names that appear in the video capture above. Since I installed Norton's, Google has been completely blocked. There was a period of difficulty but those Norton's folk keep updating my computer - many times a day in fact.
Google, Microsoft, Facebook and many others are in the business of collecting our information. They do in fact control our lives. Even on the internet when you do a word search, you don't get unfiltered results. What you get is based on what is recorded about your computer use. Here is a question that I have yet to find an answer for: 'How come Microsoft can stop you accessing your email account until you verify your identity, but it can't stop spammers using your name?'
There are places in the world where your personal internet information in the government's hands could cause 'you' serious problems - places like the USA. Can you imagine what might happen to someone if there was an email record of some politically incorrect expression, or some photograph from many years ago that could destroy a currently important person's life?
I myself once lived in a police state and was constantly followed and constantly harassed. If someone's car was parked outside my house and the owner had ever been in trouble with the law, I would be questioned with regard to my association with that car's owner, even if I had no idea who they were. And that was in Australia!
In China, each person's life is catalogued from birth to death. An indiscretion in one's youth will follow that person throughout their whole lives. This is not secret information. This is the person's record which is held by educational institutions and employers.
At least in China, everyone knows exactly what the government is holding on them. What about you?
Read Jim Kouri's article on saturday's demonstration
Washington, D.C., law enforcement agencies had their hands full when thousands of Americans from all parts of the political spectrum launched a protest on Saturday, demanding an end to the Obama administration's alleged spy program, according to a law enforcement source in the nation's capital.
2013 Social Commentary Articles
R.P. Bendedek Interviews "Daddy Loves You" Author, Patrick McKnight
October 4, 2013
A kid is a kid is a kid, no matter what the ethnic, financial or family background is, but they all have something in common; they are all influenced by their parents example and by whatever they're taught! I pray the story is the focus. I pray the story effects the readers in a positive manner. I pray the story is helpful to those that it relates to and mostly I pray that the message of "Daddy Loves You" gets the recognition it deserves. God knows I wish I had an answer for all the lost, lonely and angry guys out there. Something which I also took from your book "Daddy Loves You", is that the process of reconciliation does not always work out quite as we would like it to.
The Dysfunction in the Religion of Peace by R.P. BenDedek
By R.P. BenDedek
September 28, 2013
Muslim belief is that ultimately everything is Allah's will. Whether they approve or disapprove of the Kenyan massacres is irrelevant. It is Allah's will! Whether ordinary Muslims approve or disapprove of those terrorists is irrelevant. It is Allah's will! Whatever a Muslim may say with his lips, his true meaning is hidden in the back of his mind. It is Allah's will! Every Muslim, like every other true believer in every other religion, dreams of seeing the world converted to their god. For the Muslim therefore, every action that leads to the defeat or conversion of the infidel must be Allah's will.
Giving the Finger to Comrade GOOGLE's brand of Communism
By Comrade R.P. BenDedek
August 26, 2013
I have come to the decision that the only thing I can do is take a page out of Comrade Google's 'Little Red Book' and say: 'Screw You!' Comrade Google didn't like the way the Communist Government of China kept changing the rules. Comrade Google would not submit to a 'totalitarian authority'. Comrade Google decided to pull up stakes and leave. Is there a lesson to be learned in that?
Learning to Hate The U.S.A.
by R.P. BenDedek
August 11, 2013
American Education is actively turning young Americans into terrorists. The speaker is Brigitte Gabriel (pseudonym), a Lebanese American journalist, author, and activist. Within the video she produces documents which purport that despite so called separation of State and Church, Islam is being introduced to school children at school, and via injection of big dollars into universities all over the USA, Students are being taught to hate the USA.
R.P.BenDedek (pseudonym) is the Author of 'The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran' (http://www.kingscalendar.com ), and is a guest columnist and stand-in Editor at Magic City Morning Star News. He is also the Editor of the 'Writers Journal' at Kingscalendar.com. An Australian, he has been teaching Conversational English in China since 2003.
Writers Journal Kingscalendar
"The King's Calendar" is a chronological study of the historical books of the Bible (Kings and Chronicles), Josephus, Seder Olam Rabbah, and the (Essene) Damascus Document of The Dead Sea Scrolls