What is Happening in America?

This article (Via Bifurcated Rivets) is about recent adminstration enacted changes to America. It's a bit "inflamatory" and certainly written in an angry-so-you-should-be-too sort of way, but points out some important things. As a Brit, I don't think much of the American administration, much less the legal system. Things like the Total/Terrorist Information Awareness programme scare me, not least because it might be a template for similar measures elsewhere, but because it has such broad ranging and subtle effects (many that could not easily be articulated by opponents of such a programme). The Homeland Security thingy is just jingoistic, untrusting and frankly deplorable. Every country's national security is something they need to take seriously, but this, again, seems to me to be an overly broad brush which will ultimately tar many things.
Whilst these things are far more subtle than something like the war in Iraq, they are equally worrying. Something as big as Iraq has polarised just about everyone. You're either on one side, or another. Everyone can be defined as a supporter or opponent of the war. Not so for things like TIA or DoHS. They are much like the debate on ID cards here in the UK. Not many people really understand, and fewer still can guage how such plans will really affect their lives. All of these things are "sold" to us by a relatively small amount of fact, even the oppoents cannot easily use the subtleties against such plans as they're intangible, difficult to understand and don't affect everyone. They are still very real, and affect many people greatly.

Tread carefully, world. The old polarisation of the Cold War is gone, we had a brief period where most of us enjoyed relative peace. Now, more than ever, we have to fight for our freedoms, not just against a foreign power, but also our own governments.

Submitted by coofercat on Thu, 2003-06-19 14:58