COVID-19 SPREADS GOVERNMENT SURVEILLANCE

Taking advantage of the coronavirus scare, Congressional and Justice Department moves are being proposed to give government more control of the private lives of citizens.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is recommending passage of the “Earn It” bill, co-sponsored by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal. Provisions in this bill allow the government to sue any website that doesn’t follow a mandated list of “best practices.”

Who will determine what the “best practices” are? A commission headed by Attorney General William Barr, who is on record advocating for the right of the government to seize any digital message, including those that are encrypted.

The Justice Department also has requested that Congress give it the emergency power to circumvent one of the key principles of American law, the right of habeas corpus, which guarantees a defendant the right to a judicial hearing after being arrested.

Norman Reimer, Executive Director of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, reacted to this push by the Judicial Department by stating, “So that means you could be arrested and never brought before a judge until they decide that the emergency or the civil disobedience is over.”

It also has been reported the U.S. government has been meeting with executives from Facebook, Google, Twitter, Uber, Apple, IBM, and other tech companies to discuss ways for the government to gain access to citizens’ smartphones to track their locations. The government says monitoring citizens’ whereabouts is “much needed information to combat this public health crisis.”

As Gerald Celente highlighted in a recent “Trends in The News” video, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo gave himself unlimited authority through executive order to deal with emergencies such as the coronavirus crisis.

Global Trend

Some international governments are also using the coronavirus pandemic to extend their powers.

In Lombardy, Italy, authorities have been monitoring location data from the smartphones of citizens in order to identify anyone defying the government’s lockdown orders.

In Israel, the gathering of mobile phone data, which was intended as a counter-terrorism strategy, is now being used to monitor the movements of citizens who either have or may have been exposed to the coronavirus. Israel’s Security Agency will no longer be required to get a court order to track the movements of any citizen.

Other governments either expanding surveillance of citizens under the pretext of public health concerns or proposing to do so include the UK, Belgium, Poland, Austria, South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan.

4 Comments
  1. joseph_1 5 days ago

    “ we should never let a crisis go to waste” statement by Rahm Emanuel.

  2. Philip Zyrski 4 days ago

    What’s a crisis to some is opportunity is to others. Every time a major topic or issue dominates our mainstream media waves…somebody is making money. Somebody has benefited. What’s a loss to some is a gain for others. Just when 9/11 turned this country upside down. Now COVID-19 has shut down businesses, schools, supermakets, etc. However, the greatest benefit will come to those who contributed to the pending Greatest Depression, because the Corona Virus will now be the perfect excuse for our economy tanking. We won’t blame the cheap money and the disasterous purposes of using this cheap money to gamble! We won’t blame the income inequalities, wage stagnation, lack of opportunities, ever growing debt, political corruption, disasterous fiscal, monetary and economic policies. We won’t look toward the central bankers for printing money out of thin air and pumping it into the markets via traders and charging low and likely negative interest rates. Most of all we won’t blame this out of date, irrelevant econonic system we’ve been living under for a very long time due to the fact that we had nothing to say or do with this system’s origin and continuous operation.

  3. Craig Bradley 4 days ago

    GO DIGITAL OR DIE ??

    No Digital Currency funding provision in the most current version of the Corona Virus Relief Act now headed to the House of Representatives for Approval and then the final Bill on to President Trump’s Desk for his signature. Just shows when “the people” want support or financial relief, the system is fully capable of moving very fast. Otherwise, the government and Congress usually move at the speed of a turtle, if at all.

    Hopefully no digital currency for 5-10 more years. At 65, I would be quite happy to never see a digital only U.S. Dollar. That would be a lock-down of the global financial system and the realization of Orwell’s 1984. It will probably be a new global financial order in that day, as well. No thanks. I would prefer to “check-out” sometime before then, hopefully.

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