Thursday, June 6, 2013

Why Worry If You Have Nothing To Hide?

“Nothing to worry about”
“I’m sure we should be doing this”
“Not talking to terrorist either”

These are direct quotes of someone talking about the recent news that the NSA has been using the PATRIOT Act to simply scoop up all of the calling records of Verizon customers.  To repeat the NSA ordered Verizon to turn over the calling records of every customer, and told them they had to keep it a secret.  Now this story is starting to gain real traction, because it is an incredibly terrifying notion.  This information was leaked to the press, confirming a general suspicion that most people have, that the intelligence services of this country are continuing to increase the size, scope and drag of their information gathering on ordinary citizens, and we truly have no idea how much our government is doing in this regard.  Why?  Because it is a secret.  We are simply expected to trust that our government is doing the right thing.  Trust in the national security state.  The PATRIOT Act is all good, all the time, and only the bad guys are ever targeted.  You have nothing to fear, nothing at all.  Some legislators have warned us that we have no idea what our government thinks it can do with its surveillance powers, and that everyday Americans would be shocked if we ever learned the truth. 

On the other end of the spectrum are the quotes listed above.  These are not the words of some nitwit, man-on-the-street grade school dropout.  This comes from a sitting U.S. Senator, Mr. Neo-Con to the Extreme, Lindsay Graham.  This is an individual who swore to uphold the constitution, a document that was supposed to LIMIT the power of the government, to protect the citizens of this country from what can be the awesome and intrusive power of the Feds.  We have continued on this path for more than a decade now, that we need to cower in fear from the ever present terrorist threat, that they are everywhere plotting to get us, and that the government needs to be into everything, at all times in an effort to keep us safe.  We need to just trust in them that they have targeted the right individuals, that the info they want is relevant to actual investigations, and it all falls under the ever present and truly odious and ignorant rallying cry that “if we have nothing to hide, we have nothing to worry about.”  Free people don’t have to justify themselves, their actions or their right to be secure in their person and possessions, the government needs to make the compelling case that someone has done something wrong to justify the intrusion of the government into their lives.  Why even bother having amendments 4, 5, 6 and 8 if we can simply trust that the government is doing the right thing?  Just because the esteemed idiot from South Carolina is “sure we should be doing this” does this mean the rest of us should just sit back and enjoy the ride?  How long will this war be going on by the way?  What exactly is the metric for winning again?  If this war and the erosion of our rights will continue so long as there are small, highly motivated groups willing to attack America and kill Americans, which very well could be an indefinite proposition, does this mean that the PATRIOT Act and the surveillance state it has created will also continue indefinitely?  According to people like Graham it should and we should just stop grousing about it.  This of course means if we want to see any actual change then we need to start sending a better class of people to Washington, ones who actually understand and appreciate the idea that the government needs to be limited and restrained if we are to be a free society, and that in that free society the people don’t ever need to answer a stupid question like “why are you worried if you have nothing to hide?”

Watch Mr. Graham earn the title of Asshat below:


  1. At this rate it'll be safer and more secure if the terrorists start using semaphore flags. The way things are heading smells a bit like good 'ol Uncle Joe.

  2. What's wrong with the government looking at this stuff. Their right to check it out and see whats what. If you talking to terrorists we should know about it!

    1. Governments have no rights, they have powers. Rights belong to you, existing to limit the powers of government over your life. They have proven time and again that enabled with these powers they will abuse them and stretch them. Sitting back and trusting they will always do the right thing is not how a free society should operate.