The great coming issue is privacy. The great sucking sound you hear is
government and business wanting to know what you write in e-mails, what
condoms you purchase at the pharmacy, what books you read in the
library and what credit cards you use at the store. Privacy is the
issue that should unite Texas Rep. Ron Paul (R) and Wisconsin Sen. Russ
Feingold (D) while bringing together Matt Drudge and Frank Rich.
Google is one of the great inventions of modern history. But do you want anyone willing to pay and the government that wants to watch what you have Googled or searched for on the Internet? This is a great debate that needs to happen.
Big Brother is bipartisan. The great hunger for your private information comes from the feds under Bush and Obama, from Democrats and Republicans, from business that wants to know everything you buy, from government that wants your e-mails and phone calls in the name of fighting terrorism and campaign managers that want your private information to target their political propaganda.
Isn't it amazing that the nation that can land a man on the moon cannot stop Internet spam? The Internet spamsters only do illegally (and without enforcement) what government, business and campaign managers do legally to invade your privacy for their own purposes.
In fact, many businesses claim tax credits for actions that invade your privacy!
We do not even know everything government knows about you, supposedly to protect your security.
While the overreaching arm of government amasses huge information about your private lives (no e-mail is safe, no phone call is secure) grocers, pharmacies and businesses of all varieties want to know everything about what you purchase, to target their marketing to you.
There is now both a black market and an open market for selling information about you and me, first to the highest bidder, then to any bidder.
Americans now need a personal Supreme Court justice to understand the terms of our credit cards, bank statements, 401(k) plans, Internet accounts and the cards that get us little discounts at the places we shop. Who can they give, sell or barter your private information to? Read the terms and try to figure it out.
We live in a Big Brother society where nothing private is sacred, where everything we do is watched, where what we think is under constant surveillance by government that says it will protect us, business that wants to sell us and politicians who want to get our votes.
Big Brother is bipartisan. Big Brother is everywhere. Big Brother is dangerous.
This would be a great moment for libertarian conservatives and civil libertarian liberals to join together for a serious discussion about the Big Brother state and the dangers it poses to us all.
Thomas Jefferson didn't have to worry about his e-mails being read, and Ben Franklin didn't have to worry that the brand of condoms he bought at the local store would be known to the crown or bartered between mercantilists.
They did not have to worry about this then, and we should not have to worry about this now.