The New American Komityet Gosudarstvennoy Besopasnosty

Now that the Bush administration is making its final efforts to do away with civil liberties, we need to adjust to the new totalitarian reality.

With non-stop proposals to continue consolidating our law enforcement and intelligence entities, the inevitable police state will need to come up with a new name for the single government organization that will control and monitor every facet of our lives.

No longer will we need a confusing alphabet to differentiate between the various agencies. No longer will we need "PD" (as in NYPD or LAPD), FBI, DoJ, DIA, CIA or even NCIS. We can combine them. Let's call them all "The KGB.”

Full disclosure: This is out and out plagiarism. The idea of a single abusive paramilitary force worked effectively for decades in the Soviet Union. In fact, one can argue that it continues to work. A KGB alumnus, Vladimir Putin has applied his training to accumulate singular power in ways that must make Dick Cheney sick with envy.

But Cheney and his fellow anti-democrats (note the small "d") are doing their part to recast the U.S. in the USSR mold. By the time they are through with warrantless wiretaps, unhindered high-tech searches of all kinds, to say nothing of ubiquitous security cameras and all the other invasions of privacy, we will need powerful, heavily armed storm troopers to take action against any all transgressors, real or imagined.

Hyperbole? Before you decide that it is, remember how abusive FBI agents were to anyone considered a "Person of Interest.” And consider all the reports we have of heavily armored cops crashing into the homes of innocent people and terrorizing them.

As for those who will vehemently argue that raising these alarms undermines law and order, and public safety, maybe they should remember that what is supposed to set us apart is an overriding tradition of freedom from oppression. "Law and order" is supposed to mean we administer our laws in an orderly way, not a society that relies only on brute force and insidious high-tech domestic spying.

Ruling over a truly free society can be difficult. It's supposed to be. However, at the moment, we seem to be hell-bent on frittering away our checks and balances and other protections in ways that make George Orwell guilty of understatement.

Maybe this is a good time for our political parties to discuss this. Maybe both of them can replace their verbose subterfuge platform documents with another one. It's called the Constitution.


Visit Mr. Franken's website at www.bobfranken.tv.