I once thought the police state could not get any worse, but then I read an article in Mediaite and discovered that I was wrong, very wrong.
According to Mediaite, DHS plans on giving ant-government stories “sentiment” ratings.
A DHS spokesperson told Mediaite in a discussion that awareness of whether a report is positive or negative would help decision makers to monitor how the public feels about certain policies and if needed, clear up misconceptions.
According to DHS, story “sentiment” is exactly what its database will track. Sentiment analysis will help DHS decide how the public feels about the government.
DHS: Critics are “conspiracy theorists”
DHS Press Secretary, Tyler Houlton, claims critics of their new spying on the media policy are “tinfoil hat-wearing, black-helicopter conspiracy theorists.”
Since 9/11, life in America has begun to resemble oppressive regimes like Communist Russia. Where everything they said and everywhere they went was being monitored.
Three years ago, The Atlantic published an account of what life was like under the KGB in the 1980s.
Our phones were tapped, our apartment bugged, our mail opened, and we assumed that our government-provided housekeeper filed frequent reports on us.
For comparison’s sake, let’s change that warning to reflect what life in America is like.
Our cell phones are tapped, our apartment is bugged with Amazon voice activated devices, our emails and texts opened and our government-provided smart devices report on us.
Make no mistake, creating a list of anti-government bloggers will stifle free press.
Former representative Patrick Meehan said,
collecting and analyzing, disseminating private citizens’ comments could have a chilling effect on individuals’ privacy rights and people’s freedom of speech and dissent against their Government.
“Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press”—Thomas Jefferson (1786)
Could DHS and law enforcement use this list to put anti-government journalists, bloggers and commenters on a no-fly list or worse?
The only difference between life in America and life under the KGB is that, so far, journalists, bloggers and commenters are not being thrown in jail.