Monday, March 14, 2016

On Guns and the Apple Privacy Battle - It's About Protecting US from Abusive Dictators

I watched the 60-minute segment last night on Encryption and things suddenly became crystal clear. Using the word "privacy" makes it seem that we are willing to let terrorists be protected so we can keep our precious emails private. But watching that Russian guy who wrote a program to protect dissidents in Russia and had to leave the country for his own protections made it so clear this is not about our emails.

If there were cell phones in Hitler's day would we advocate relaxing encryption so the Gestapo could root out opponents? Since most of the world is under some authoritarian rule and we claim we are for democratic movements, then handing the keys to these dictators to root out not terrorists but those who are trying to organize opposition to these dictators.

And we know full well we may not be all that far away from facing our own fascist dictatorship here. Imagine trying to protest a president Trump as his version of the Brown shirts go after you?
The ability to organize, which terrorists are using, becomes our tool when we are oppressed.

As for guns - well think of the registration issue and how that would be used by a dictator to send people to your house to confiscate them. We know the right wing charges that Obama was going to do that were a joke. But what happens when the shoe is on the other foot and the right is in control? They will have the guns and the progressives won't.

Can we become Russia when we have a Putin-like president who has the support of 90% of the people?  Or worse, Germany where Hitler was enormously popular? If you are a student of history it is not far to get from there to here. And will the day come when the only option you might have left as a dissident is to become a terrorist yourself?

Just some thoughts on a rainy Monday morning.


  1. I saw a snippet of that segment of 60 minutes, got depressed and turned the channel. The problem is most Americans are not "students of history".... no one ever sees the big picture and all the possible slippery slopes that result from their acceptance of what may appear as reasonable until one scratches the surface. As for a President Trump's possible use of brown shirts---- I recognize the slippery slope but am willing to ignore it. I'm too obsessed with my hatred for Hilary Clinton's status quo and the sell-out democratic party and their puppets such as Randi for that to resonate with me enough to change my vote. It may not matter to most but I'd rather be devoured by the wolf who acts like a wolf(Trump) than by a wolf dressing in grandma's pajamas (Clinton). The dems have done their best to undermine Bernie so if that results in President/Dictator Trump, so be it. The Democratic Party has taken teacher votes for granted for far too long. Bernie and my local assemblyman are the only democrats I have supported since Obama appointed Arne Duncan. That appointment and democrat, Andrew Cuomo woke me up to the failures of the democrats. Roseanne McCosh

    1. I often find myself thinking along the same lines, but then pull back when I think about the choice between a constitutional democracy (flawed, atrophied, abused and manipulated as it is, but a constitutional democracy all the same) and a government elected by people who want an intolerant megalomaniac to "save" them.

      The majority of voters in Germany laughed at Hitler, thinking he was a passing fad. The Communist Party refused to ally with the Social Democrats against him, mistakenly thinking, "After Hitler, us!"

      I think we are moving into a period of intense crisis - economic, social, political and ecological - and, while Donnie on his own doesn't scare me all that much, millions of angry, willingly misled people who are looking for a strong man savior, are scary, indeed.

  2. One need look no farther than Turkey to observe the movement of a democratically elected ruler toward authoritarianism. Restrictions on freedom of the press are good early indicators.

    Abigail Shure


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