Warning: Internet Crisis!

Daniel O’Connor
Campaign For Liberty
Oct 5, 2010

The internet is one of the last few aspects of modern America that is relatively free from government control. The main reason being is that it is protected by the First Amendment. In Addition, the internet has become an invaluable aspect of society through which we have transformed our entire way of life and the way in which we interact. Through the internet, we are able to live free from government interference, from both a social and economic standpoint.

Bureaucrats who feel the need to control this country do not like this. They prefer to control our lives and tax our earnings so that they can maintain and expand their own power. They believe that they know what is best for society and how we should lead our own lives and conduct business. Over the centuries they have expanded their influence into almost every aspect of American society, both socially and economically. However, the internet is one entity that they have yet to seize control over…so far.

Given the level of importance that we place on the internet, the consensus remains that Americans are not willing to let the government begin to control our precious internet freedom–similar to the way in which Americans cherished freedom in everyday life, prior to the presidency of Herbert Hoover/Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1929-1945). These presidents were able to gain control over American society in the midst of “crises”. In the event of a crisis, citizens have a tendency to surrender their freedom in exchange for “security” as offered by the government. It is through this very same means that the government will begin to infiltrate, and gain control over, the internet.

The day has yet to come, but once a major problem occurs through the use of the internet, power-hungry bureaucrats will be certain to exploit this opportunity in order to gain control. Some of the potential examples are as follows:

-A terrorist infects a U.S. government database with a virus and therefore the government should expand its control over the internet in order to continue fighting terrorism.

-Children are exposed to too many evils on the internet and therefore the government must step in to prevent this.

-Intellectual property is not thoroughly protected on the internet and therefore the government must take over in order to enforce these laws.

-A war. It may be a war with another nation. Or our government may concoct a new misleading slogan similar to their “war on terror”, “war on drugs”, “war on poverty”, etc.

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It is very easy to blame the internet (the communications medium) and to claim that if only we had, say, an “internet security” system in place our children would be “safer”. In response, a large national movement will take place blaming “the internet” and “freedom”.

A president will then go on to launch an aggressive push to begin control over our once-beloved internet. Many of the scared parents across the nation will then demand that the government protect their children from the evils of society that “infect the internet”. Concurrently, the many industries and businesses that have suffered, due to better competition online, will lobby in support of the president. The defense contractors who profit from increased defense measures will also lobby on behalf of the president. For added strength, the many power-hungry politicians such as long-time senators Joe Lieberman and John D. Rockefeller IV will also get behind the president under the guise of “security”.

In fact, many of these actors have already begun their attack on the internet through gimmicks such as government regulated “net neutrality”. All they need now is the right “crisis” to appear. In a testimony to congress, Rockefeller defined “cybersecurity perpetrated through the internet as the #1 national hazard of attack on the homeland… “. This is one justification for increased government control.

(Mr. Rockefeller, Is the internet the #1 hazard of attack to American security or is it the fact that the U.S. government has been bombing the rest of the world and interfering in the affairs of other cultures and nations for so many decades?)

Our current president has already come out in support of internet control. As recent presidents generally prefer to empower the central government and disempower the individual, Obama predictably supports a need to ramp up cybersecurity in the name of “public safety and national security” (5:35 min) and a need to “maintain our military dominance”. In fact, this same speech touches on the threat of “weapon of mass disruption” similar to his predecessor in marketing the Iraq invasion.

Many of the powerful forces gathered around Washington DC are poised to launch a fierce attack on Internet Freedom; so as individuals we must be prepared to defend the First Amendment of The Constitution, as our government has little regard for this document which was initially written in order to restrain the role of government and protect our individual liberties. We can be certain that this attack on our internet will come in the near future and will hit in full force once the right “crisis” arrives.

(In order to develop a better understanding for the way in which governments manipulate “crisis” in order to enhance their own agenda and control over the citizens, an excellent primer is “The Road to Serfdom” written by Frederick Hayek, which is one of the best-selling books in history.)

Before the crisis arrives, we should all be mindful of the scare tactics that our government makes use of in order to expand its own power base. The “war on terror” was been blown way out of proportion and keeps people in fear to this day. We must not allow the government to scare us and “keep fear alive” any longer.

“Those willing to sacrifice freedom for temporary security will lose both.”–Benjamin Franklin

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