Various security agencies regularly remind us: if you see something, say something. The admonishment means, if you see someone who acts suspiciously, or anything else that seems out of place, inform the authorities. That sounds like East Germany behind the Iron Curtain to me. If you know that people around you will turn you in if you do anything that’s slightly unusual, you will be careful not to do anything in public that could land you in trouble. Just broadcast that warning again and again – you won’t have anyone give you any trouble.
Suppose we were to turn this principle of ratting each other out back on its authors? Let’s say that every time we saw some government official acting suspiciously, every time some public event seemed off or fishy, we would report that to our fellow citizens. We already do that when we take videos of police misbehavior and post them to YouTube. We could be more diligent about doing shining the bright light of social observance on every type of crime committed by people who clothe themselves in the protective mantle of public authority.
The mainstream media used to have that role, but they certainly don’t take that responsibility anymore. With a few exceptions, they bow so deeply before their confidential news sources that you cannot have confidence in what they say. They take what government tells them, run it through their bun warmer, and publish it. If you want to know the government line, you know where to go.
So the only real source of trustworthy news now is us, with our phones, our keyboards, and our access to the internet. Our connected devices make us more powerful than we think. Government officials have an abiding anxiety: that we’ll use the power in our hands. Why do you think the feds force troublemakers to live abroad, put them in prison, or tie them up in legal proceedings and prosecution until they give up? They do not want us to follow the troublemakers’ example!
Do you think government can possibly make use of the data on millions of phones to stop one shooter who decides today’s the day for jihad? Of course not. Government does want us to know that it has access to our phones, however, if it wants access. That way we will curtail our behavior to avoid the fate of the troublemakers who stood up and and said, “Stop it!”
If we know that comprehensive surveillance is possible, most of us will constantly monitor our behavior so as to avoid trouble, much like people in small towns who know the neighbors are watching. The difference is that while neighbors might cluck their disapproval to reinforce social norms, government can destroy you once it marks you as a threat.
I don’t have time in here to detail the deep connection between drills and deceit in the commission of public crimes, but I’ll list three examples that have meaning for people who read The Jeffersonian over time:
- Boston Marathon bombing
All three of these crimes were associated with drills. For all three, things seemed out of place, and key individuals acted suspiciously. These incongruous events and pieces of evidence are apparent before, during, and after the crimes. They cannot be missed, and they cannot be covered up. To resist people and agencies who collaborate in despicable acts, we must spread information associated with public crimes as widely as we can. We have means to do so. We need initiative and determination to draw everyone’s attention to the things that do add up, and to the things that don’t.
The biggest giveaway of all for big crimes is the presence and announcement of a drill in close association with the attack. A close connection between all three crimes listed above, and drills associated with the attacks, exists. Drills are supposed to cover up responsibility for the crimes, but their presence confirms that something nefarious is up.
We have a lot of crimes without drills, and a lot of drills without crimes. You could say, by chance, the two may happen together. All the evidence we have indicates when a drill coincides with a crime, the coincidence occurs not because we roll the pistol’s chambers once too often, but because authorities need a drill to disguise what is actually happening.
When a drill occurs along with a crime, you cannot separate the two later on. Each confuses the other. That’s why citizens with smartphones need to gather as much evidence as they can, including everything they see, and disseminate the evidence as fast as they can, via digital networks.
That determination gives citizens – badgered forever to call the police if, say, you observe a youngster playing with a toy gun in a local park – a different kind of strength. Citizens have means to expose people who believe they protect themselves, if only they keep everyone guessing and ignorant of their motives and schemes. If authorities can induce people to eye each other, suspicious and ready to call if they don’t like what they see, so much the better. The more distraction and isolation, the better.