Talaya Soria, a pastor’s wife living in California and an ex-employee of Wal-Mart shared some interesting information regarding a phone call placed to Wal-Mart’s corporate offices about the mega-giant’s ‘if you see something, say something’ partnership between Wal-Mart and The Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
In response to the new policy, this concerned citizen called corporate to ask some pointed questions and got more than she bargained.
When asked how many stores would be adopting the new policy, the Wal-Mart associate grimly responded, “All of them”. Disgusted by the fascist new policy, Mrs. Soria began to list the problems with a program with this type of focus stating “This policy isn’t aimed at the terrorists but at the populace — to control what we say!”.
Patiently listening to the concerns, the Wal-Mart Associate responded in hushed voice, “yes, I agree with you” the paranoia felt by the employee was completely palpable. Talaya continued, “If I say something someone doesn’t agree with – they can just turn me in!”. The operator once again timidly responded, “Yeah, I know where you are coming from. You’re right!”.
Ending the call, Talaya summed up her argument, “This is a very un-American policy and I will be telling all my friends, family, church members and everyone to boycott Wal-Mart”. The silence on the other end of the line spoke volumes. Obviously, Talaya was preaching to the choir. The associate was in complete, even if silent, agreement.
After Talaya got off the phone, she immediately called her local Wal-Mart to let them know about the new program and express her intention to boycott the store if the policy was officially adopted. When she got off the phone and attempted to make another call a strange clicking sound was clearly audible on the line.
Talaya phoned her husband to let him know about the conversation and she continued to hear the clicking. Her husband did not hear anything on his end of the line and when she hung up, the phone immediately started ringing again. Caller ID showed an unfamiliar number with a (925) area code. When she picked up the phone no one answered.
Again hanging up, the phone began to ring with the same unrecognized caller ID; still no answer at the other end.
Talaya decided to call the number shown on caller ID but the call would not initiate. After several failed attempts the line began to make a high pitched tone with no ringing beforehand.
In an earlier time, one could dismiss such experiences and the fear they impart as paranoia and laugh off those ideas with a chuckle. But thanks to legislation like The Patriot Act and software like Echelon, it is completely within the realm of possibility that the phone call was monitored, threatening language identified and a wiretap immediately placed on the line. No hard to justify warrant needed, Talaya is now being monitored.
A sign of the times, we have traded freedom for the illusion of security.
The perfect storm has arrived. A failing economy and a climate of fear have locked us all into survival mode. The majority of people remain asleep because reality is so grim and our options so limited; surrender is the only viable tactic for most. And so with our silent consent we get comfortable in the control grid erected to ‘protect’ us. Engineered to consolidate power and our complacency plays right into the hands of our wardens.
They came first for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for me
and by that time no one was left to speak up.
– Pastor Martin Niemöller
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