Commentary

The Security State Is Watching, But The Peaceful Revolution Must Continue.

When nonviolent demonstrations (like occupying a public sidewalk) and online civil disobedience (like crashing a website) against Wall Street’s crimes and the hijacking of American democracy by big-moneyed interests strike fear into the U.S. security state, it only makes those demonstrations more relevant and necessary. The mere act of challenging institutional corruption and the security apparatus which protects that corruption, shines a light on that which needs changing, and creates possibilities for reform.

The Department of Homeland Security (@DHSJournal) issued a bulletin this month:

The bulletin, issued by the DHS National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC), warns financial services companies especially to be on the lookout for attempts by Anonymous to “solicit ideologically dissatisfied, sympathetic employees” to their cause…The DHS alert also warns of three cyber attacks and civil protests it says are planned by Anonymous and affiliated groups.

The bulletin shouldn’t be surprising. After all, the same security bureaucracy that was ostensibly created to protect us from terrorists has, over the years, crept into other areas of American life. This is a natural phenomenon of any police state, a sort of “mission creep,” if you will. Here are some examples, and by no means is this list exhaustive:

1) The CIA has been actively working with the NYPD (via US Day of Rage, et al.):

Citizens have been prevented from exercising their right to peaceable assembly in New York City because the force established to serve and protect civil society, the NYPD, has become a counter-intel paramilitary force. CIA training has turned their operations into one of the “most aggressive domestic intelligence agencies”. Just last week the New York’s police commissioner confirmed that a CIA officer is even working out of police headquarters.”

2) The Department of Homeland Security has been monitoring protests against Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), an organization that video has captured committing egregious acts of police brutality and, with the help of telecom companies, had shut down cell communication of activists there.

3) The Justice Department has been arresting and prosecuting members of Anonymous for what some call a form of online civil disobedience, but has failed to start even one investigation into Wall Street’s criminal activity. Any alleged crimes Anonymous may have committed pale in comparison to the havoc wreaked on America in 2008 by casino capitalism.

4) The security state goes far beyond just the FBI, DHS and CIA, however:

Some 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security [emphasis mine] and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.

According to the DHS and other agencies, Anonymous and US Day of Rage now fall under the auspices of “homeland security.” Where does this “mission creep” end? Habeus corpus has effectively been eradicated for anyone deemed a “security threat.” Think about that.

The demonstrations planned for September 17th represent nothing less than the first direct, unflinching challenge to the hijacking of American democracy in recent memory. Remember that Wall Street’s power over this country’s politics has largely gone unchecked. No prosecutions of the Street’s criminal class have occurred. Indeed, they’ve corrupted institutions like the SEC, which was created to monitor and regulate the financial sector. And to make matters worse, the Obama administration is going out of its way to avoid investigations into Wall Street malfeasance. Large corporations are now able to pour unaccounted amounts of money into elections, effectively drowning out the voices of everyday Americans. The writing is on the wall: We are rapidly losing our democracy to corporations and other special interests, and they are being aided and abetted by a sprawling security state that protects the elite while limiting dissent.

“One citizen. One dollar. One vote.” That is US Day of Rage’s simple demand. And it is this crucially important idea that has the U.S. security state sending out bulletins to the very criminal class that has, until now, gotten away with barely a slap on the wrist. It is because of this that the peaceful revolution to restore power to We the People must continue. September 17th, 2011 isn’t just about Wall Street. It’s about challenging an utterly dysfunctional, corrupt system, a system with a security apparatus which seeks to protect the real threat to national security: the Too Big to Fail banks and financial institutions in Lower Manhattan that brought down the American economy.

For more information on the alarming expansion of the U.S. security state, visit: Ten Years Later: Surveillance in the “Homeland”, a comprehensive collection of investigative journalism by Truthout in cooperation with the ACLU of Massachusetts.

For the latest updates on US Day of Rage’s peaceful occupation strategy for September 17th, 2011, visit here.

Dustin M. Slaughter is the Founder of The David and Goliath Project.

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