THEY ARE SPYING ON US!

I’m walking around laughing at the gigantic fuss, furor, and scandal over the latest invasion of our privacy. I think this months villain is Microsoft. Last month it was someone else. Government? Corporations? Amazon? Google? They are all spying on us. You knew that, right?

So last night, when we were nicely tucked into the most comfortable bed in the world, I said to Garry:

newspaper1“Can you think of any government anywhere, or any time in the history of humankind, during which governments have not spied on their citizens or subjects?”

He honored me with a thoughtful few seconds before answering … or maybe he was just twiddling with the remote control.

“Nope.”

“I think the way it works is this. First, we invent heads of state. Kings, presidents, emperors, whatever. Next, they invent a secret police so they can keep on being the head of state. The only thing that seems to change is the technology. And the quality of the dungeons.”

“Yup.”

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“I think it’s a mistake to try and monitor all those emails and phone calls. I mean, they are just going to be buried under data. Lots of jabbering kids yakking with friends, people arguing with customer support, and boring conversations by people like us. We never say anything interesting on the phone. We hardly talk on the phone at all. Our email is pretty dull too.

“Yup.”

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Americans have an ongoing need to be outraged about something. We require a constant level of civic hysteria, maybe to keep from being boring. Scandal keeps ratings up and gives talk show hosts something to joke about. It gives liberals and conservatives something to accuse each other of doing, even though every administration has done pretty much the same stuff and always will.

I’m wondering how long this is going to stay on top of the news. It has been years … at least five so far and I see no end to it. Apparently it never gets old.

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Nothing will change. Governments spy on citizens. Citizens are outraged. The outrage is ignored. Eventually, everyone moves on — until it pops up again.

I’m having trouble getting myself worked up over this.

I remember Richard Nixon. I even remember J. Edgar Hoover. I’ve read history. I know traffic cameras track us. If anyone is looking for me — or you — I’m sure they’ll have no trouble finding us.

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My government spies on me. Corporations spy on me. Everyone collects my personal information and uses without my permission. That’s the price I pay for being connected and computerized.

They were spying on us during the 1960s, albeit less efficiently. They were spying on my parents and their friends in the 50s and 40s.

Obama didn’t start this. Bush didn’t start it. FDR didn’t start it. Abraham Lincoln didn’t start it. It’s been going on as long as there have been governments and it will never end.

Author: Marilyn Armstrong

Writer, photography, blogger. Previously, technical writer. I am retired and delighted to be so. May I live long and write frequently.

30 thoughts on “THEY ARE SPYING ON US!”

  1. I actually giggle when I think about it, if they really wont to read my boring emails, listen in to my highly enciteful phone calls and watch my every boring move?????? good luck to them, I have nothing to hide, and they will quickly lose interest in someone like me………….the fact is there are an awful lot of someone like ‘me’ out there, haven’t they got anything better to do? I know it will never change, it’s just the technology, but I guess the better the technology the more people they can cover. Where as in the days of secret service it was men in black on foot with pencils and notepads, sneaking behind bushes, possibly tapping your phone and taking photos of people who were dobbed in by neighbours for being suspicious. Now everyone is suspicious!

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    1. I think trying to listen to everyone is like listening to no one. All they are going to get is a massive amount of worthless data that’s impossible to analyze and misses anything important. Sooner or later, “they” will realize they are wasting time and other resources and gaining nothing.

      In other words, the people they need to find are not US. Eventually, they will figure it out. Meanwhile, welcome to my world.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes they snoop. I wish they didn’t. I don’t think it’s right or ethical.
    We can hope they do so in our best interests, but …
    Sometimes that does not turn out to be the case.

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  3. I am getting a new computer with Windows 10. Mr. swiss told me that it is now a fact that it is the ultimate in spyware, everything you do on the computer is reported. So somewhere in Silicon valley there is an agent arriving at his desk in the morning and his job is to find out what Mrs. Angloswiss is doing today. I am famous. If the Swiss do something they do it thoroughly but unfortunately they get caught. They were collecting facts about people politicians, teachers, students and recording them on documents kept in various drawers in a special room in their central . It was discovered, a big story was made about it and upon request you could get your data. It was of course all destroyed eventually. That was about 10 years ago so they have had enough time to refill the records again.

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  4. They’re passing a law here (or just passed it, I don’t know) where ISPs have to keep all URLs visited per IP address for a year. Obviously that way the government can spot patterns with radical websites and such. Which I don’t mind if it keeps me safe.
    The problem is that nearly every day some big company gets hacked and loses a load of data. Imagine the blackmail opportunities if someone gets hold of this data…

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    1. I think they are already getting hold of it. How tempting for low-paid government employee to have that stuff. So easy to sell and so hard to track who sold it. And who knows that the hackers don’t already work for your government or mine?

      Liked by 1 person

  5. So true. Even something as mundane as grocery shopping is spied on. Everytime we use our EFTPOS cards the products we buy are then logged so that we will get emails specifically to our likes etc from credit card companies to buy more products – a case of Big Brother is watching your every move. Nothing is sacred any more

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    1. One of the things I love about our local grocery is that they do NOT log all our purchases. I think it’s the very last grocery store in the world that doesn’t.

      But in the end, it doesn’t matter because I use my debit card to buy them and I’m sure the bank tracks every purchase I make. We are all just data to someone somewhere.

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