"Amazon’s Collaboration With the Deep State Continues"
By Dan Denning
"Editor’s Note: Longtime Diary readers know Dan Denning as Bill’s right-hand man on The Bonner-Denning Letter. That’s why, for today’s guest essay, we turn to Dan. Below, Dan shows that while technology may be neutral, it’s how we decide to use it that determines our fate… and why now is likely a better time than any to walk away from it all…
Amazon has suddenly become the single most dangerous company in American history. It’s on the verge of becoming the digital secret-keeper of the Deep State – the modern equivalent of J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI, with personal files and dirty secrets on thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, or perhaps even ALL Americans. But this time, it’s controlled by a corporation. And not only has it become powerful and influential in American politics (donating millions to political campaigns), it’s become a power unto itself, mostly thanks to the critical data storage services it provides to America’s defense and intelligence agencies.
If all that sounds too depressing and dystopian for you, well… too bad. The Orwellian future is here now. It’s a brave new world already, and it’s far worse than we imagined. You may not want to believe that, but let’s look at the evidence…
From Stock Market Favorite to Deep State Crony: Amazon is trying to make itself an indispensable cog in the surveillance machinery of the Deep State. Billionaire media titan John Malone, formerly of AT&T, recently described Amazon as a “Death Star” for every industry it touches. Once it installs itself in Washington as the digital secret-keeper for the U.S. government, Amazon will become the most powerful – and most dangerous – company in American history.
Amazon’s growing clout in providing cloud-based storage for the Department of Defense and Central Intelligence Agency is a dangerous development. The military-industrial complex has always cooperated closely with the Pentagon to provide weapons for America’s military. But Amazon’s collaboration with the Deep State to provide surveillance tools is on another level altogether.
Silicon Valley is collaborating with elements of the Deep State to create a permanent surveillance society in the United States. And Amazon is part of that techno-coup. If you value liberty, the Bill of Rights, and your freedom, then you have a limited amount of time to do something about it. It’s not only your money that’s at stake… It’s your rights and freedom as an American, too.
As Abroad, So at Home: None of this might bother you if you are secure in the belief that the tools made by the tech companies for the Deep State are only used to detect and destroy America’s enemies. They’re only doing their job, right? And Amazon is only doing its patriotic duty, right? After all, Bill has discussed how the Deep State began to grow in earnest in the years immediately following World War II to combat the growing threat of the Soviet Union. America couldn’t have won the Cold War without the help of GE, Boeing, and IBM. The companies and the enemies are different today… But isn’t the issue basically the same?
And if you’re skeptical about my claim, please read this very carefully: The very same model the Deep State uses to run counterinsurgencies against governments overseas is being used now against Americans in America. This is dangerous. And it’s wrong. Why?
America was founded on the idea of limited government, with individual liberty as its core value. The State has no business watching us all the time – at least, not in what’s supposed to be a “free country.” But there’s more to it.
You can’t really be free if you’re looking over your shoulder all the time. When you know that you’re being watched, you start watching what you say. If you’re watching what you say, it means you’re watching what you think. And if you’re watching what you think, you stop thinking. Again, this is the whole point of ubiquitous surveillance in a police state: the suppression of independent critical thinking, speech, and action. Maybe you disagree. Fair enough.
But think about the future… If your data is being warehoused for all time, who’s to say that you won’t be found guilty of a new crime 10 years from now? Maybe it’ll be a thought crime. Or maybe it’ll be some pattern detected in your data that shows you’re on the path to some radical action. You’ll be guilty of “pre-crime,” like in Philip K. Dick’s short story, The Minority Report. Am I exaggerating?
No. In fact, get a load of this… Have you heard of Homeland Advanced Recognition Technology (HART)? It’s Homeland Security’s creepy new database that will look to match up your face… your DNA… as well as people’s “non-obvious social relationships” (think of the people you may be friends with on Facebook, for example). Well… despite opposition from Congress, it’s going full steam ahead… and, of course, Homeland Security uses the Amazon cloud.
Go Dark, Walk Away, Spread the Word: You need to walk away from social media completely… and with haste. Technology is neutral. How we use it – or how we let it use us – is up to us. For now, at least. The threat is that Big Government will get in bed with Big Data and use all this data to control you.
Spread the word. The independent publishing industry is under attack by the big internet companies for a variety of reasons. They simply don’t want this kind of message being sold and distributed on their platforms. I wonder why! If you know someone you think would enjoy this, please share it.
Finally, there is something you can do to turn the tide on all this. We believe you change the world – at least, your world – with individual action. Control the things you can control and recognize the things that are out of your control. That’s a good philosophy. But what about your liberty? In a republic with representative and limited government, you also have a say in the laws of the land and in defending your rights and liberties as an American.
Due to popular demand, Bill and I have addressed many of the concerns about technology and Big Data in what we’re calling a “Digital Bill of Rights.” You can read and sign that Digital Bill of Rights here. Will it change the course of American history? I’m not optimistic. But the stakes are too high for you to do nothing."