Official Secrets . . .

The United States of America has a serious problem.  It is functionally psychotic.

I’m talking about how a country can claim to adhere to the ideals of truth, honesty, and integrity, while at the same time empowering anyone to keep secrets from the citizens who vote for the people who are empowered to lead the country.

Logically, there is a very fundamental flaw in such a system.

Every time you authorize a secret to be protected, you must by definition authorize someone to protect that secret from discovery.  The people charged with protecting those secrets do not answer to governments, or any agency within a government.  That is the exact anathema to a democratic republic, which is what the United States Of America is supposed to be.

Here is a logic problem on a global scale.  How can you have a government that is elected by the free will of the citizens who are governed by that government, but empowered to keep secretes from those who elect those who make the decisions of that government?

You can’t.

Whomever you empower to protect a secret is automatically empowered with authority superior to that of any elected official.  They become the gatekeepers to the secret. Their authority is superior to those who were elected, and thus  they are superior to the elected government.

I stumbled upon this line of reasoning because my wife and I recently watched a series of shows on Netflix Streaming called “America’s Book of Secrets”.  The whole series was about the secrets that were being kept from the citizens of the United States by the government that was supposed to be protecting them.

As a caveat, I must admit that nothing in that series actually divulged any national secret.  However, that is part and parcel of the problem.

How can any person, in a society that presumes itself to b e run by the consent of the governed, be capable of making a competent decision about anything if they are not given full access to the facts pertaining to the future of that government?  Every protected secret is a breach of the function of that government.

I can’t speak for the other governments of the world, but if the United States of America still values honesty, integrity, and transparency, then the citizens of the USA need to take action to abolish the notion that ANYTHING can be an official secret.

Librarians vs. NSA . . .

This hits close to home, because the woman who has been my wife for 15 years is a full-time, professional librarian.

http://www.thenation.com/article/206561/librarians-versus-nsa

Your local library is on the front lines against government surveillance.  Say “Thank You” to a librarian today!

More NSA surveillance revelations . . .

The U.S. National Security Agency has figured out how to hide spying software deep within hard drives made by Western Digital, Seagate, Toshiba and other top manufacturers, giving the agency the means to eavesdrop on the majority of the world’s computers, according to cyber researchers and former operatives.

That long-sought and closely guarded ability was part of a cluster of spying programs discovered by #Kaspersky Lab, the Moscow-based security software maker that has exposed a series of Western #cyberespionage operations.

[…] A former #NSA employee told #Reuters that Kaspersky’s analysis was correct, and that people still in the intelligence agency valued these spying programs as highly as #Stuxnet. Another former intelligence operative confirmed that the NSA had developed the prized technique of concealing spyware in hard drives, but said he did not know which spy efforts relied on it.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/02/16/us-usa-cyberspying-idUSKBN0LK1QV20150216