Friday, 12 April 2013 19:34
IRS, Nanny state, drones, gun registry: 1984 at the door
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big-brotherThe United States of America has reached the nightmare levels outlined in George Orwell’s famous classic, Nineteen Eighty-Four.

 

 

Orwell wrote of a “big brother” government with constant surveillance of individuals, who are persecuted for independent thinking and not allowed any sort of privacy. These draconian policies are carried out by a massive government bureaucracy all in the name of the “greater good.”

In our country today, our federal government has become Orwellian. It continues to grow with reckless abandon. Our national debt is approaching $17 trillion as more people become dependent on government services to survive. A shocking 90 million Americans are not involved in the labor force as nine million Americans are receiving disability payments and almost 50 million Americans are forced to accept food stamps.

Sadly, both the private sector and the concept of privacy are under attack. In the last labor report, a mere 88,000 jobs were created while 663,000 people exited the workforce due to frustration, retirement or disability.

In the toxic environment, our federal government is expanding and it is becoming harder to earn a living in the private sector and remain free of government control. This will only get worse in 2014. The President’s healthcare plan will extend the reach of government to over 20% of our economy. This is being done without the support of the American people and the very effort may cripple our healthcare industry.

As our economy is becoming totally controlled by the federal government, the Nanny state wants to exert more control over our personal lives. There is no better example than New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg who is trying to dictate what people can eat and drink, what legal prescription drugs they can use and whether mothers can use baby formula. This quest for control is all in the name of what is supposedly good for his beleaguered constituents.  

On the federal level, gun control legislation is moving through Congress with Republican support. It will create universal background checks and will be ineffective without a national registry of guns, which the President supports.

This week, it was revealed that the IRS has the right to review email communications. This shocking disclosure was condemned by Republicans and Democrats alike. The IRS contends that it does not need a court order or any type of approval to examine the electronic correspondence, including text messages, of unsuspecting Americans.  This extensive attack on privacy is a violation of the Fourth Amendment, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

Clearly, to review text messages or emails the government should obtain a warrant and it should be limited to terrorist suspects. The assault on privacy was accelerated by the Patriot Act, passed in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks; however, these new IRS powers are taking government surveillance to an entirely new level.

The IRS claims that Americans do not have a “reasonable expectation of privacy in such communication.” This assertion is unwelcome news to millions of Americans who do indeed expect their electronic communications to be free from government oversight.

U.S. Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) said that the revelation is “an affront not only to our system of checks and balances, but also to our fundamental right to privacy.”  Udall said that this IRS power is an “overreach.” He is imploring his colleagues to overhaul the Electronic Communications Privacy Act.

Obviously, this act needs to be strengthened at a minimum to deal with new forms of Internet usage and communication. For example, IRS agents are also being accused of checking Facebook postings of Americans without permission.

All of these actions by the IRS or other government agencies should require a warrant. If there is no warrant, Americans should expect a reasonable degree of privacy.

In our Orwellian state today, Americans are constantly being monitored by cameras, drones and other types of security measures. While this is being done in the name of keeping us safe, it is also eroding our precious right to privacy.

It is time we turned the tables on the oppressive government and demanded privacy to attend church, shopping malls, and ball games, cultural and social events without being watched by government monitors.  

Americans should also be free to lawfully engage in electronic communication or, heaven forbid, buy a gun without the oppressive oversight of a federal government hell-bent on accumulating power and limiting the God given rights of its citizens.  

 

 

              

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Jeff Crouere

Jeff Crouere is a native of New Orleans, LA and he is the host of a Louisiana based program, “Ringside Politics,” which airs at 7:30 p.m. Fri. and 10:00 p.m. Sun. on WLAE-TV 32, a PBS station, and 7 till 11 a.m.weekdays on WGSO 990 AM in New Orleans and the Northshore. For more information, visit his web site at Ringside Politics.

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