Over the weekend, I was reading a Los Angeles Times article that aggravated me and I wanted to share the article with you and why I was slowly losing my patience with it.
The article was about black boxes that are being proposed for every car in the United States and while I knew that the “black box” idea has been slowly implemented by insurance companies for lower rates, I realized that the option or choice was offered. However, soon the black boxes will be mandatory.
This Orwellian technology is being touted as a way to improve public safety and the sad thing is that the public is responding favorably to these boxes. They are also responding favorably to another proposal that comes with the boxes, paying highway tax for every mile traveled.
The Los Angeles times reports that, “The devices, which track every mile a motorist drives and transmit that information to bureaucrats, are at the center of a controversial attempt in Washington and state planning offices to overhaul the outdated system for funding America’s major roads.”
One thing that needs to be emphasized is that over the next decade congress will slowly bring about the tax per mile law as the box will keep mileage, and provide another revenue and surveillance source.
Not only will the box give real time tracking of you and your vehicle, citizens will actually pay for this through mile by mile taxing.
-All of your driving trips
-Be able to ascertain when you are at home and when you leave
-Know when you are at work
-Establish patterns of all activity such as when you shop, when you buy groceries, what bars you frequent, etc.
It will also flag drivers who attend certain types of political rallies, activist meetings, practice at gun ranges or other “yellow” spots that authorities see as cautionary locales for plotting domestic terrorism.
This can also make you susceptible to punitive tax audits. If there is ever a suspicion that you are participating in unlawful activity, you could be the victim of surprise raids and routine extortion that now is reality in the United States.
“Several states and cities are nonetheless moving ahead on their own. The most eager is Oregon, which is enlisting 5,000 drivers in the country’s biggest experiment. Those drivers will soon pay the mileage fees instead of gas taxes to the state.”
As I was reading that I wanted to know where these people exist and how they are completely ignorant to what these boxes have the potential to be used for let alone the tax per mile that they will have to pat along with outrageous gas taxes.
Fox News reports, “However, economists and civil libertarians are concerned about the Oregon pilot project in large part because some mileage meters can track and record residents’ every vehicular move.”
The ACLU is concerned about privacy issues and the twisted thing is that those who wish to volunteer do not see the slippery slope of rights violations that can occur with the use of such surveillance tools.
The more we volunteer information to the government about what we do the more we embrace the police state and the surveillance apparatus that is out of control.
The very idea of people volunteering for such an endeavor speaks to the lost interest of Americans to uphold constitutional values.
Fox News continues, “Oregon is purportedly considering several tracking methods for the pilot project’s 5,000 volunteers ahead of the 2015 start date – essentially allowing them to install mileage meters connected their vehicles’ odometers or GPS systems that could better track non-taxable miles on private and out-of-state roads. The average cost of GPS is now about $200.”
Can you believe that there are 5,000 people willing to pay for the systems and then have the tracking happen and accept paying the bill for their travel?
How can they be so stupid? How can they not see how this will not benefit anything but the ever-encroaching surveillance state?
The Washington Times reports that “only 13 states have laws protecting vehicle owners from open access to event-data recorder information. Many of those have exceptions that allow access with owner consent or court order, or for repair-shop diagnosis, vehicle-safety research or dispatching of emergency medical personnel. A few states prohibit insurance companies from demanding data before paying a claim.”
Most states impose no restrictions that would prevent black boxes from becoming on-board spy devices.
When I was a kid my father bought me a little black box bank. It had a little slot that you would put coin in. When the coin was placed in the groove on the box, the box would shake and moan. A green hand would pop out of a trap door and take the coin. The irony is now that a black box will be required for 96 percent of cars sold by next year and the greedy monster hand wants to overreach in both its collection revenue and spying on the American people.
We now have to accept the fact that government policy is now the policy of overreach and the public does not attempt to slap the hand that wants to reach out of the black box and steal money and spy on you.
I believe that we can officially say that the United States of America is proud to call itself a “surveillance state.” The surveillance apparatus in the United States has grown to a level never before seen and as it is being implemented there does not seem to be any opposition to it which indicates that with all of the warnings and all of the slippery slope philosophies being doled out by the independent media, the surveillance state is now being accepted a s a necessary evil and that most Americans secretly condone the technological prison that is being constructed.
The perfect panopticon is being hatched in the United States and it seems to be welcomed, endorsed and even fought for. It is time to admit that when we say we are free it is only a state of mind and a metaphor for the guilt most Americans have for watching it die on closed circuit television.
International governments have been taken aback by the extent of the NSA spying apparatus are now questioning to what extent they want their internet traffic funneling through U.S. servers and ISP’s.
This is bad for international business, but the attitude of most Americans is “who needs them, we are the USA and we make the rules.” Such attitudes for people who are always under the watchful eye of big brother and soon will be under the robotic eye of a predator drone that will fire at will if it is programmed to.
The lack of protesting against such out of control spying is either a result of future shock or ignorance. I really can’t put my finger on any of it.
It all begs the question what are we all afraid of? Have things changed all that much that we need to be under so much surveillance?
Whether American’s want to admit it or not, it must be declared that from this moment forward intelligence gathering in not only focused primarily on the criminal activities of state enemies but on American citizens and the consensus have accepted it as a necessary evil. From this moment forward, we must realize that the Fourth Amendment has been struck from the constitution.
Now that America has accepted the surveillance state without protest. It is important to point out from this moment forward that the NSA and there overreach of Americans’ communications undermines basic principles of privacy and since there has been no objection from the people the Fourth Amendment is no longer being enforced.
As this violation of what was once an important fundamental right of American freedom continues to go unabated, it is proposed that the future of communication and discourse in the United States will be handicapped. Open discourse is essential for a democratic society. Spying and surveillance will seriously alter the relationship between government and its citizenry.
The following groups will be affected, anyone that is affiliated with any media, lawyers, and ordinary citizens who will have to ponder the consequences of conduct, which includes visiting any controversial website or participate in any particular meeting that can even be construed as anti-government.
Any important ideas essential to democracy will diminish. The Fourth Amendment is officially dead when Americans now demand their surveillance and pay more taxes in order to keep the surveillance state intact.