The numpties in the American security services were seriously scared by this. I would like to remind you that we are talking about the most powerful country on earth.
Which is the root cause of the problem. They are powerful. It might not seem like the root of the problem, but that’s only if you’ve never considered the ramifications of being powerful. The point of being powerful is that you can tell other people (or countries if you’re powerful enough) what to do. More importantly still is the fact that you don’t have to listen to them. Now this might not seem much of a problem if you’re powerful, but that is only because the powerful aren’t the kind of people who listen. Or, for that matter, take advice.
After all, they know best. Since they can know nothing else, what else is there to know? So, they will go through their entire lives imagining themselves to be right when the reality is that they couldn’t be more wrong.
In a country like America where people routinely shoot each other before breakfast, killing is simply part of life. Not to all Americans, that is true, but America is the place where more killings happen on a personal level than anywhere else. Killing is, after all, the ultimate way to shut someone up. It’s the ultimate in safety.
Making People Think.
This is but a prelude to the real thought behind this post, which is the fact that someone said the ‘bomb’ word. They did so in public and in a way that would make a lot of people think. In the surreal world we live in, people don’t spend their time thinking. The problem here is that the suggestible – that is to say, those who don’t spend time thinking for themselves – will start to think of things they’d never otherwise think about.
The antsy, suggestible people in the security services will be reading this because I too have mentioned the word ‘bomb’. They will think I am a bomber simply because I use the word. They think they’re right and they couldn’t be more wrong. Nor will telling them make any difference because they’re not used to listening…
The circle surrounding their comfort zone is closed. Hermetic. Nothing can get in. You can see how difficult it is to get through to some people. Actually, it’s not just ‘some people’, it’s most people. A recent comment from GC on my post on the subconscious is a clear example of this. He is closed off to the world; his problem is that he doesn’t know this (1).
Now the American security agencies have the same problem. Only they have the power and the money to tell everybody else that they really are right. Since nobody can tell them otherwise, they compound the problems they have created for themselves through their fears (the things that make them feel uncomfortable).
Doing Their Job.
Now, owing to the open nature of the internet, it’s incredibly easy to spy on. All they need is some computer equipment, access to private emails extorted from the likes of Google and bingo! You have surveillance (2).
Anybody who mentions the word ‘bomb’ will be flagged for attention. Which probably means I’ve been tailed for several years as a potential terrorist. Now given that these people already know what makes a terrorist because they know what makes them feel uncomfortable. That is to say, people like me who use the word ‘bomb’. It doesn’t help that this isn’t the reality of the situation, but they aren’t listening, are they?
Creating A Problem.
And all the while, the agencies are gleefully collecting millions of emails every day. It shows how powerful they are, doesn’t it? They sit on a stack of data and know it’s theirs. But powerful people aren’t powerful because they’ve thought something through. Anybody who’s powerful or has a position of authority in our world will be there because they haven’t thought things through. The more powerful the less they need to think… the very thing they need to do if they are going to wield their power wisely.
So we have some pretty stupid people sitting on a mountain of data. I say they’re stupid because data is inherently difficult to deal with and only the stupid want more of it. The very homogeneity of data, its very sameness is what makes it so difficult to handle. I was looking through the chaos that is my nascent book and trying to find a particular phrase that I’d used. Do you think I could find it? Between Apple’s new search feature that works now and again, and my own inability to remember the exact phrase, I had a substantial problem (3). Oh, and all Apple searches done through Searchlight are sent to Bing… the mind boggles as to why they want this information…
This is the problem the agencies have created for themselves: they know the answer’s in there. They have algorithms that can search for the word ‘bomb’ only with the amount of data they have, it means even a fast computer will take three weeks to return the results of the search. In this case, twenty one billion emails mention the word ‘bomb’. Approximately. It’s an invented figure, but it’ll give you an idea of the scale of the problem. It won’t take long to read them, will it?
It’s not a big number if you say it quickly enough, but that’s illusion for you.
So there’s me with two unread emails in my inbox and three hundred others, few of which I have actually read… So there’s the agency with all of my emails, all the emails of my neighbours, villagers, friends, residents of the Netherlands, Eurasia and the Pacific Rim. Few of which are of much use to any of us, leave alone the agency.
And that isn’t counting the colossal amount of spam that is filtered before it even reaches our inboxes…
Do the agencies keep a tab on these too, just for good measure?
The Facts Of Life.
Because their inability to deal with the facts of life have led them to some pretty extreme measures to deal with something that is actually the direct result of their stupidity. The less able they are, the bigger the problem.
So they’re developing new algorithms. The problem is that their stack of data is doubling every three months and by the time the new algorithm is ready, it’ll already be out of date. But the agencies are fixated on collecting data. It’s their job, for chrissakes. It’s what they’re paid to do … and like so many in our world, they can’t do their job. Mainly because they’re confused. They’ve never really thought about the problem.
If you are going to spy on someone, make sure it’s the right person. It’s incredibly hard to do online, and I’m a past master at letting people hang themselves with their own rope – that is to say, spotting someone fixated on illusion, the direct result of which is that at some point they will contradict themselves (4). It’s easy enough to fathom, but it does take a lot of practice if you want to be certain.
Because if you don’t know how to do this, you’ll be chasing every damn fool who writes ‘bomb’ in their email. The canny ones will have met in a coffee bar and agreed to use the word ‘flowerpot’ instead. It’s possible that with a tip-off they will be looking for the word ‘flowerpot’ – but what of those using a simple book code?
The agencies in wishing to spy on us really have made a burden for themselves.
But they aren’t going to stop just because I say so, are they? They’ll delete my WordPress account first, show how powerful they are. They are protecting democracy, after all. But then, protection of this kind always works against the thing they are trying to protect… that’s the way of the world. Anybody who protects anybody else is doing them direct harm.
A Simple Solution.
Wouldn’t it solve a lot of problems for the surveillance guys if the people two floors up from to them weren’t funding the people who like using bombs?
(1) This is the comment he made on my post about the Subconscious. Click Here.
(2) America’s so-called Patriot Act allows the government access to data that in democracies is considered private. Swiss email providers are secure, some German ones are, too.
(3) Why is it that an improved computer system is always worse at doing the simple things? Is it because everybody uses their computers for gaming??
(4) See my post ‘Why Is It Always Me That Has A Mental Disorder’ for an example of this. From an anthroposophist who should have known better. But he’s scared to post comments on this blog…