1984 Was an Instruction Manual


Note: This is alarming. No doubt, the American Government and its various satrapies are doing their best to shut down debate on the New World Order. However, though I don’t claim to be any kind of expert on the technologies involved, I will make the following comments:

1. Oppression on any scale is never for its own sake. It requires an ideology of legitimation. There are many names for the current ideology – PC, totalitarian humanism, GranscoFabiaNazism, etc. Whatever name you prefer, it is a feeble thing compared with, say, Marxism. In thirty years, it has gone from revolutionary flood to sclerotic ancien regime. Its promises of a better world have all been falsified. When it descends to factual claims – “Global Warming is real,” “Diversity is strength,” “We can bring democracy and human rights to [fill in the blank]” – these too have become jokes. It has succeeded in spreading a miasma of guilt among its enemy groups, but has also gone too far in demonising too many inherently powerful groups. Men, Christians, white people, heterosexuals, traditionalists, libertarians – these can only be depressed for so long.

2. Outside the corporate-bureaucratic-police state core, the dominant ideology has little support. The only other authoritarian system with which I am personally familiar is Communist Czechoslovakia. The government there provided free healthcare and education, and work for all. Ordinary people would have been better off without Communism. But they were better off by 1960 than they had been in 1938. They were much better off again by 1980. The police state inconvenienced a small minority. In practice, intellectual dissent was quietly tolerated, so long as it didn’t come to outside attention. Few people were imprisoned. Hardly any were murdered. And the ideology was flexible enough to accommodate all but the more extravagant varieties of religious belief and ethnic nationalism. Until the system collapsed under the weight of its own inefficiency, it faced no internal opposition, and could rely on at least the passive support of the majority.

The client groups of our own dominant ideology are more fragmented and conflicted. Homosexuals are generally white men. As such, they belong to two of the demonised groups. Or they tend to apolitical hedonism. Half of the Blacks are men, and tend to be hostile in practice to both female equality and gay liberation. Most women want to have babies with men who look after them and make all decisions outside the home. The Moslems, in addition, regard the dominant ideology simply as a convenient ally in their vague wish to impose a dominant ideology of their own. Undoubtedly, Jewish intellectuals laid the ideological foundations of the current order of things. But Jews as a whole have no reason to be grateful. They are as conflicted as the homosexuals, and at least as much disliked by the non-whites. Their main common denominator is support for Israel, and Zionism is deeply unfashionable among the new elites. A great underclass has been created by indiscriminate welfare. But, in political terms, its members range between the unreliable and the hostile. There are few grateful beneficiaries.

3. Censorship in a reasonably free society can work when it is narrowly focussed – eg, on porn only, or on defined heresy. Or it can work as part of a system that kills anyone who steps out of line. What we currently have is an attempt at general censorship in societies where people cannot be dragged from their homes into concentration camps. The examples made do have a chilling effect, but are not decisive. For twenty years now, we have had unlimited porn and free music, and the growing ability to look behind the headlines. These are not delights that can easily be taken away. People won’t riot, or even shout loudly. What they will do is continue quietly to choose technologies that frustrate efforts at control. For example, I remember a big push, c1995, to get us to store our data on-line. Instead, most of us opted for bigger hard disks. So far as I can tell, modern cloud storage has its uses – the various websites that I control are backed up in the Cloud – but only fools trust their personal data outside their own control.

4. Above all, our rulers are increasingly demoralised. They know they are hated. They know they have little support. They suspect they are wrong. They are themselves conflicted. They will smear and destroy individual opponents like Nick Griffin and Abu Hamza. They dare not take ruthless and decisive action at the general level. Another example. In 2009, rumours emerged that New Labour was looking at a postponement of the next general election. Though we knew they were useless, the NuLab people feared the Tories were what we’d like them to be. I am told that, after extensive consultation, Gordon Brown et al. discovered they couldn’t rely on the administrative machine to go along with seriously unconstitutional action.

5. Grant the right kind of emergency – pandemic, asteroid impact, severance of trade with Asia or the Middle East, and so forth – and the ruling class will act despotically for a while. But that would probably get the general support any government could demand. Grant that things will carry on much as they do now, and I doubt that the more dystopian fantasies of control are more than fantasies. Much like puritanism and prohibitionism and state socialism, this too will pass away. SIG

1984 Was an Instruction Manual
by Peter Van Buren, December 04, 2013

Originally posted at TomDispatch.

Once upon a time, you might have said that someone “disappeared.” But in the 1970s in Argentina, Chile, and elsewhere, that verb grew eerily more active in its passive form. He or she no longer “disappeared,” but “was disappeared” – up to 30,000 Argentineans by their own military in the course of an internal struggle that came to be known as “the dirty war.” Those gone were the “desaparecidos.

There is something so deeply, morally repugnant about disappearing another human being, no matter how or where or why it’s done, that it’s hard to express. Yet in twenty-first century America, the possibilities for disappearing people in new and inventive ways may be migrating online, as former State Department whistleblower and TomDispatch regular Peter Van Buren suggests in his latest post. Tom

Welcome to the Memory Hole: Disappearing Edward Snowden
By Peter Van Buren

What if Edward Snowden was made to disappear? No, I’m not suggesting some future CIA rendition effort or a who-killed-Snowden conspiracy theory of a disappearance, but a more ominous kind.

What if everything a whistleblower had ever exposed could simply be made to go away? What if every National Security Agency (NSA) document Snowden released, every interview he gave, every documented trace of a national security state careening out of control could be made to disappear in real-time? What if the very posting of such revelations could be turned into a fruitless, record-less endeavor?

Am I suggesting the plot for a novel by some twenty-first century George Orwell? Hardly. As we edge toward a fully digital world, such things may soon be possible, not in science fiction but in our world – and at the push of a button. In fact, the earliest prototypes of a new kind of “disappearance” are already being tested. We are closer to a shocking, dystopian reality that might once have been the stuff of futuristic novels than we imagine. Welcome to the memory hole.

Even if some future government stepped over one of the last remaining red lines in our world and simply assassinated whistleblowers as they surfaced, others would always emerge. Back in 1948, in his eerie novel 1984, however, Orwell suggested a far more diabolical solution to the problem. He conjured up a technological device for the world of Big Brother that he called “the memory hole.” In his dark future, armies of bureaucrats, working in what he sardonically dubbed the Ministry of Truth, spent their lives erasing or altering documents, newspapers, books, and the like in order to create an acceptable version of history. When a person fell out of favor, the Ministry of Truth sent him and all the documentation relating to him down the memory hole. Every story or report in which his life was in any way noted or recorded would be edited to eradicate all traces of him.

In Orwell’s pre-digital world, the memory hole was a vacuum tube into which old documents were physically disappeared forever. Alterations to existing documents and the deep-sixing of others ensured that even the sudden switching of global enemies and alliances would never prove a problem for the guardians of Big Brother. In the world he imagined, thanks to those armies of bureaucrats, the present was what had always been – and there were those altered documents to prove it and nothing but faltering memories to say otherwise. Anyone who expressed doubts about the truth of the present would, under the rubric of “thoughtcrime,” be marginalized or eliminated.

Government and Corporate Digital Censorship

Increasingly, most of us now get our news, books, music, TV, movies, and communications of every sort electronically. These days, Google earns more advertising revenue than all U.S. print media combined. Even the venerable Newsweek no longer publishes a paper edition. And in that digital world, a certain kind of “simplification” is being explored. The Chinese, Iranians, and others are, for instance, already implementing web-filtering strategies to block access to sites and online material of which their governments don’t approve. The U.S. government similarly (if somewhat fruitlessly) blocks its employees from viewing Wikileaks and Edward Snowden material (as well as websites like TomDispatch) on their work computers – though not of course at home. Yet.

Great Britain, however, will soon take a significant step toward deciding what a private citizen can see on the web even while at home. Before the end of the year, almost all Internet users there will be “opted-in” to a system designed to filter out pornography. By default, the controls will also block access to “violent material,” “extremist and terrorist related content,” “anorexia and eating disorder websites,” and “suicide related websites.” In addition, the new settings will censor sites mentioning alcohol or smoking. The filter will also block “esoteric material,” though a UK-based rights group says the government has yet to make clear what that category will include.

And government-sponsored forms of Internet censorship are being privatized. New, off-the-shelf commercial products guarantee that an organization does not need to be the NSA to block content. For example, the Internet security company Blue Coat is a domestic leader in the field and a major exporter of such technology. It can easily set up a system to monitor and filter all Internet usage, blocking web sites by their address, by keywords, or even by the content they contain. Among others, Blue Coat software is used by the U.S. Army to control what its soldiers see while deployed abroad, and by the repressive governments in Syria, Saudi Arabia, and Burma to block outside political ideas.

Google Search…

In a sense, Google Search already “disappears” material. Right now Google is the good guy vis – vis whistleblowers. A quick Google search (0.22 seconds) turns up more than 48 million hits on Edward Snowden, most of them referencing his leaked NSA documents. Some of the websites display the documents themselves, still labeled “Top Secret.” Less than half a year ago, you had to be one of a very limited group in the government or contractually connected to it to see such things. Now, they are splayed across the web.

Google – and since Google is the planet’s number one search engine, I’ll use it here as a shorthand for every search engine, even those yet to be invented – is in this way amazing and looks like a massive machine for spreading, not suppressing, news. Put just about anything on the web and Google is likely to find it quickly and add it into search results worldwide, sometimes within seconds. Since most people rarely scroll past the first few search results displayed, however, being disappeared already has a new meaning online. It’s no longer enough just to get Google to notice you. Getting it to place what you post high enough on its search results page to be noticed is what matters now. If your work is number 47,999,999 on the Snowden results, you’re as good as dead, as good as disappeared. Think of that as a starting point for the more significant forms of disappearance that undoubtedly lie in our future.

Hiding something from users by reprogramming search engines is one dark step to come. Another is actually deleting content, a process as simple as transforming the computer coding behind the search process into something predatory. And if Google refuses to implement the change-over to “negative searches,” the NSA, which already appears to be able to reach inside Google, can implant its own version of malicious code as it has already done in at least 50,000 instances.

But never mind the future: here’s how a negative search strategy is already working, even if today its focus – largely on pedophiles – is easy enough to accept. Google recently introduced software that makes it harder for users to locate child abuse material. As company head Eric Schmidt put it, Google Search has been “fine-tuned” to clean up results for more than 100,000 terms used by pedophiles to look for child pornography. Now, for instance, when users type in queries that may be related to child sexual abuse, they will find no results that link to illegal content. Instead, Google will redirect them to help and counseling sites. “We will soon roll out these changes in more than 150 languages, so the impact will be truly global,” Schmidt wrote.

While Google is redirecting searches for kiddie porn to counseling sites, the NSA has developed a similar ability. The agency already controls a set of servers codenamed Quantum that sit on the Internet’s backbone. Their job is to redirect “targets” away from their intended destinations to websites of the NSA’s choice. The idea is: you type in the website you want and end up somewhere less disturbing to the agency. While at present this technology may be aimed at sending would-be online jihadis to more moderate Islamic material, in the future it could, for instance, be repurposed to redirect people seeking news to an Al-Jazeera lookalike site with altered content that fits the government’s version of events.

…and Destroy

However, blocking and redirecting technologies, which are bound to grow more sophisticated, will undoubtedly be the least of it in the future. Google is already taking things to the next level in the service of a cause that just about anyone would applaud. They are implementing picture-detection technology to identify child abuse photographs whenever they appear on their systems, as well as testing technology that would remove illegal videos. Google’s actions against child porn may be well intentioned indeed, but the technology being developed in the service of such anti-child-porn actions should chill us all. Imagine if, back in 1971, the Pentagon Papers, the first glimpse most Americans had of the lies behind the Vietnam War, had been deletable. Who believes that the Nixon White House wouldn’t have disappeared those documents and that history wouldn’t have taken a different, far grimmer course?

Or consider an example that’s already with us. In 2009, many Kindle owners discovered that Amazon had reached into their devices overnight and remotely deleted copies of Orwell’s Animal Farm and 1984 (no irony intended). The company explained that the books, mistakenly “published” on its machines, were actually bootlegged copies of the novels. Similarly, in 2012, Amazon erased the contents of a customer’s Kindle without warning, claiming her account was “directly related to another which has been previously closed for abuse of our policies.” Using the same technology, Amazon now has the ability to replace books on your device with “updated” versions, the content altered. Whether you are notified or not is up to Amazon.

In addition to your Kindle, remote control over your other devices is already a reality. Much of the software on your computer communicates in the background with its home servers, and so is open to “updates” that can alter content. The NSA uses malware – malicious software remotely implanted into a computer – to change the way the machine works. The Stuxnet code that likely damaged 1,000 centrifuges the Iranians were using to enrich uranium is one example of how this sort of thing can operate.

These days, every iPhone checks back with headquarters to announce what apps you’ve purchased; in the tiny print of a disclaimer routinely clicked through, Apple reserves the right to disappear any app for any reason. In 2004, TiVo sued Dish Network for giving customers set-top boxes that TiVo said infringed on its software patents. Though the case was settled in return for a large payout, as an initial remedy, the judge ordered Dish to electronically disable the 192,000 devices it had already installed in people’s homes. In the future, there will be ever more ways to invade and control computers, alter or disappear what you’re reading, and shunt you to sites weren’t looking for.

Snowden’s revelations of what the NSA does to gather information and control technology, which have riveted the planet since June, are only part of the equation. How the government will enhance its surveillance and control powers in the future is a story still to be told. Imagine coupling tools to hide, alter, or delete content with smear campaigns to discredit or dissuade whistleblowers, and the power potentially available to both governments and corporations becomes clearer.

The ability to move beyond altering content into altering how people act is obviously on governmental and corporate agendas as well. The NSA has already gathered blackmail data from the digital porn viewing habits of “radical” Muslims. The NSA sought to wiretap a Congressman without a warrant. The ability to collect information on Federal judges, government leaders, and presidential candidates makes J. Edgar Hoover’s 1950s blackmail schemes as quaint as the bobby socks and poodle skirts of that era. The wonders of the Internet regularly stun us. The dystopian, Orwellian possibilities of the Internet have, until recently, not caught our attention in the same way. They should.

Read This Now, Before It’s Deleted

The future for whistleblowers is grim. At a time not so far distant, when just about everything is digital, when much of the world’s Internet traffic flows directly through the United States or allied countries, or through the infrastructure of American companies abroad, when search engines can find just about anything online in fractions of a second, when the Patriot Act and secret rulings by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court make Google and similar tech giants tools of the national security state (assuming organizations like the NSA don’t simply take over the search business directly), and when the sophisticated technology can either block, alter, or delete digital material at the push of a button, the memory hole is no longer fiction.

Leaked revelations will be as pointless as dusty old books in some attic if no one knows about them. Go ahead and publish whatever you want. The First Amendment allows you to do that. But what’s the point if no one will be able to read it? You might more profitably stand on a street corner and shout at passers by. In at least one easy-enough-to-imagine future, a set of Snowden-like revelations will be blocked or deleted as fast as anyone can (re)post them.

The ever-developing technology of search, turned 180 degrees, will be able to disappear things in a major way. The Internet is a vast place, but not infinite. It is increasingly being centralized in the hands of a few companies under the control of a few governments, with the U.S. sitting on the major transit routes across the Internet’s backbone.

About now you should feel a chill. We’re watching, in real time, as 1984 turns from a futuristic fantasy long past into an instructional manual. There will be no need to kill a future Edward Snowden. He will already be dead.

Peter Van Buren blew the whistle on State Department waste and mismanagement during Iraqi reconstruction in his first book, We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. A TomDispatch regular, he writes about current events at his blog, We Meant Well. His next book, Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the #99Percent, will be available April 2014.

Copyright 2013 Peter Van Buren

11 responses to “1984 Was an Instruction Manual

  1. It should be pointed out that none of the “Jewish intellectuals” who made up the Frankfurt School of Marxism actually believed in Judaism. This stands in sharp contrast to the Islamic threat – where it is precisely those people from Islamic families who have NOT rejected Islam who are the problem (plus those who convert to Islam).

    They (the founders of the Frankfurt School) had all rejected the religion of their forefathers and were (perhaps without fully knowing it) looking for an alternative religion.

    The blood-and-soil religion of German collectivism (going back to Fichte and so on) would not do for them (for obvious reasons) – so Marxism was the obvious alternative (Karl Marx himself was from a family of Jewish origin – although this did not prevent him engaging in hate filled rants against Jews and other groups of people).

    And German socialism (whether of the Marxist or non Marxist sorts) does have the advantage of seeming far more “profound” and “scholarly” than French or English socialism.

    The French tradition of socialistic thought (going back to Rousseau and beyond) is really that of painting an inspiring picture (with words) of a wonderful dream world – and then making speeches that stir the heart (but fall apart when one thinks about them – errr how could there be seas of lemonade and these friendly anti lions and anti tigers?).

    The English tradition of socialistic thought is more like a Civil Service style report – written by Mr or Mrs Webb. A seemingly practical plan for the state to do A, B,C and eventually all the way to X,Y, Z .

    But the German tradition of soicialistic thought……..

    This is more like a multi volume epic (written in technical language that it is difficult if not impossible to understand) that leaves people with the impression of …….

    “These people are so clever and learned (I am not fit to clean their boots) they understand everything about everything – I must just obey”.

    And the Frankfurt School were no exception – they always gave the impression that they had read everything and knew everything, and it was such a massive effort for them to even talk to ordinary people (as we are such ignorant scum…..)

    However. there was a problem – by the 1920s it was obvious that Marxism was objectively wrong – based on stuff (such as the Labour Theory of Value) which is just not true.

    How to get over this “problem” (the fact that Marxism is rubbish).

    Deny (in as complex and “intellectual” way as possible) that objective truth (right and wrong) even exists – here the writings of William James and Sorel are useful.

    True the Frankfurt School did not go as far as Mussolini in denying objective truth and grabbing at “Useful Myths” – but what they produced was not really classical Marxism (“we are not Kansas any more Toto”). It is more like a cultural. fog – an endless amount of words justifying (well anything they wish to justify – as long as it leads to the “fundamental transformation” against “capitalism” and the “capitalists”). Even (temporary) alliances with rich people are justified – as long as their money comes from the magic spells of high finance (not factories, ranches. mines. oil wells and so on – as long as the rich people are not engaged in the “exploitation” of making actual physical products).

    So where does leave us today?

    Well Barack Obama is certainly not of Jewish origin – any more than his friend Edward “Orientalism” Said was.

    The modern Frankfurt School (the “Critical Theory” crowd and so on) is not really the baby of any ethnic group – and it (no surprise) hates Israel (capitalist exploiters of the proletarian Third World) and is happy to cooperate with the Islamists. [Some of the original Frankfurt School hoped that Israel would turn out socialist and it appeared that it would - but in the end socialism broke on the rock of practical experience].

    Although the Marxists are planning to betray the Islamists – just as the Islamists are planning to betray the Marxists. Indeed in the Middle East they are already murdering each other (with a little gentle encouragement – whenever it is possible to turn them against each other).

    Anyway………

    We have the increasingly messed up United States – where the “mainstream” media (including, indeed especially, the entertainment media) and the education system basically just accepts Frankfurt School
    assumptions (without really thinking about them).

    We have China – basically a vast modern version of the Nazi Germany of the 1930s (socialist in theory – but willing to tolerate private enterprise is it serves “National Greatness”).

    We have Russia – basically rule by the Organised Crime (Mr Putin is the head of both the government and of Organised Crime – a bit like the President of the Federation in the old “Blake’s Seven” science fiction show, oh well at least he is not a Marxist).

    And we have the Islamic threat – utterly ruthless and with terrible intentions (both Sunni and Shia).

    On the positive side……

    I was wrong (very wrong) in one of my fears.

    I assumed that (somehow) the great powers would cooperate to create the old nightmare of “international cooperation” (World Slavery) perhaps under the name (much favoured by academics) of “world governance”.

    But that seems to be breaking down – even before it is formally established.

    For example, Mr Obama has tried (again and again) to work with Mr Putin for the sake of The Cause.

    But Mr Putin is not interested in The Cause – he is not a Marxist (KGB people often were not – indeed their nickname for Western Marxists was “Shit Eaters”).

    Mr Putin is an Organised Crime man (which is what the FSB now is). He has more in common with Al Capone than with Barack Obama.

    Which is actually a good thing.

  2. In short……

    Yes the world faces a small number of very nasty powers – as in George Orwell’s 1984.

    But they do not share the same basic ideology – which the powers in 1984 really did.

    The United States is not yet totally controlled by Frankfurt School type ideas – the media and the education system (and dear old Barry Obama himself) may have more problems on their hands than they understand.

    They may just produce chaos and collapse rather than tyranny – and that would please the anti American Sean Gabb (and if tyranny was the only alternative …….).

    Islam is not the stupid tool that Marxists think it is – the Islamic powers (Shia and Sunni) are independent . Evil – but an independent evil (although this news has not yet got into the heads of the clever-clever Western intellectuals – who still think they can “use” Islam).

    Russia is a Mafia State – NOT Frankfurt School “international community” state. Poor Edward Snowden – they are going to squeeze every bit of information out of you (which they will sell to whoever wants it), then they are gong to kill you, and (then) launch a vast investigation which will announce the CIA did it.

    And China………….

    China is a the great unknown.

  3. As the leader of the Dutch freedom party (amongst many others) has pointed out, what Mr Cameron calls “hate preaching” is simply Islam. For example Mohammed would not have objected to the murder of people for mocking Islam – we know that because he (Mohammed) ordered the deaths of people for mocking Islam.

    For example an old blind poet mocked Islam and Mohammed – so men were sent to pretend to be friends (so that the family would let them have access to the old man) they then murdered him.

    A female poet protested the murder of the old blind poet – so men were sent to murder her as well.

    There is no “extremist hate preaching” – this is just Islam, Mohammed was not Jesus or Buddha – Mohammed was a political and military leader (one of genius). Islam does not mean “peace” (as the BBC claim) it means “submission”.

    Go to even a moderate Islamic country, such as Morocco, with Bibles and try and convert people – see what the moderate government (and they are moderates – relatively speaking) does to you, and to anyone who converts. When I was in Gibraltar (last weekend) there was a book on sale warning about the possible consequences of having a Bible in your luggage if you visited Morocco.

    Sadly people who try and explain all this (such as Spenser Abraham [an Armenian American - NOT a Jew as his foes claim] and Pamela Gelllner – who is Jewish) are banned from visiting Britain – banned by the government that Mr Cameron heads.

  4. A particular problem is that much of the censorship is not done by the state but by private bodies, especially the mainstream media who routinely suppress stories not to their liking. For example, they suppressed news of the Blair daughter’s attempted suicide in 2004 and I currently have an ongoing battle with mainstream media to take up the matter of Piers Morgan and his receipt of information prima facie illegally from the Met Police,

    The media are refusing to run the the Morgan story despite the fact that they know I have supplied Operation Elveden with a letter in which Morgan admits to the PCC that he received information in circumstances which can only have been illegal and Elveden are refusing to act upon it – .See http://livinginamadhouse.wordpress.com/2013/12/05/operation-elveden-and-piers-morgan-the-metropolitan-police-commissioner-brought-into-play/

  5. This is part of the last ditch efforts of the Obama Democrats, their justice department and criminal press. They stoop to subterfuge, fabricate any evidence and murder by proxy, physically and ethically. The advances in technology ensure the erasing and rewriting of the historical record. We are one generation of bamboozled Americans away from annihilation and slavery!

  6. Yes there are many examples of illegal activity by Mr Morgan (and other leftist journalists both from the Trinity Mirror group and the Guardian group) – but, as he does not work for News International (the target of this witch hunt) the authorities are not really interested.

    Even News International does not seem to understand that the best defence is attack. Showing that everything their ex employees are accused of (and much more) was done by Mr Morgan and so on.

    Instead the News International approach has been to pull the bed clothes over their heads and hope the nasty people attacking them will go away.

    Also there are a lot of weird things about the mainstream media.

    For example it is very difficult to find out how many copies newspapers and magazines in the United States (where Mr Morgan now works – for CNN part of the Time Warner group) actually sell – what one is given is “circulation” which includes unchecked internet claims.

    Television is much the same…… if someone wants Fox News they have to buy access to CNN and MSNBC as well (because it is all “bundled” together)

    In the United Kingdom it is much the same – I do not want CNN but I have to buy access or do not got Fox News.

    This is not a market in any normal sense – it has to change.

    What may happen is that people will go for “streaming” over the internet – people will only pay for what they want to watch

    An end to “broadcasting” (that “ratings” based fraud) and to “bundling”.

  7. Dear Mr Van Buren

    What is the difference between government and organised crime?

    One is illegal.*

    I have long assumed that large US corporations were executive arms of the US government – that’s the only reason they are allowed to be large, for if they neglected to do the US government’s bidding, other companies would become large instead.

    Possession laws are a godsend to the tyrannical totalitarian state: make it illegal to possess something then find someone you suddenly decided you don’t like, possesses some banned thing that they didn’t know they had. Images are wonderful since they can be so easily planted – another way to destroy someone – make them a non-person in the minds of all ‘right thinking’ people.

    DP

    * but neither is lawful.

  8. Julie has corrected my senility – it is Robert Spencer (not the dreadful ex Senator from Penn).