After years of the seemingly inadvertent fomentation of distrust among its polity (the growing role of the U.S. government and the Vietnam war, for example), technology has opened up a potentially ubiquitous eavesdropping by the federal government that is eerily reminiscent of George Orwell’s 1984. It does not seem sinister, though, since it thus far appears to be the outcome of an aggressive privatization policy that was probably compelled by the rapid implementation of our most recent wars. Nevertheless, Americans have the right to ask question, remain vigilant and demand answers if not reform.
“A majority of Americans – 56% – say that federal courts fail to provide adequate limits on the telephone and internet data the government is collecting as part of its anti-terrorism efforts. An even larger percentage (70%) believes that the government uses this data for purposes other than investigating terrorism.
And despite the insistence by the president and other senior officials that only “metadata,” such as phone numbers and email addresses, is being collected, 63% think the government is also gathering information about the content of communications – with 27% believing the government has listened to or read their phone calls and emails.”