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  • What did Shatner call it at the beginning of Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home? Oh yeah! Terra Paranoia.

    I'd say Geoff and Alex are both suffering from the effects, and frankly, I'm not too far behind. The revelation of widespread government incursions into the private lives of millions of Americans has us all a little jumpy. Couple that with the multitude of conspiracy theorists out there claiming 911 was a plot by the government to systematically dismantle the Bill of Rights and destroy the American economy, and there is more than a little plausibility to the theory that government corruption is so vast it now extends to the enslavement of the American people through our own laws.

    Now, interestingly enough, if such a plot were afoot (and I am not saying definitively it is), wouldn't the next logical step be to monitor all communications to identify those who might cause trouble? Not only the people crying out “The NSA is coming, The NSA is coming!”, but also the more aggressive groups, like say, those back hills militia groups on the fringe of legality who isolate themselves from the world and stay off the grid.

    If I were a member of an elite, ultra-secret fringe organization operating at the edge of the law under the blessing of the government, I would be methodically collecting information about such groups and carefully finding even the slightest reason to confine and discredit the leaders of such groups. And I would do it in such a way as to show them to be the cause of their own problems. That way, when the hard core portions of their plan are put in place "for our protection", they would be able to quickly stifle any resistance.

    Transit papers for travel from one area to the next. Invasive background checks to have certain government jobs or own certain items. The requirement to wear identification if you belong to a certain group (call it fashion and they will all fall in line). Penalties for using certain words, no matter how long ago and under what circumstances you used them.

    In place of transit papers, you could artificially raise the cost of travel beyond the ability of the common man. People would take "stay-cations", and remain in their own areas, cut off from their ability to exchange ideas and get a fresh perspective. And when they begin to question the necessity of such high prices, you could simply point your finger at the fuel suppliers and make them the enemy, not you. That might even justify sending troops into their countries to intimidate them. Hmmm. Some of this sounds awfully familiar, doesn't it?

    As far as those alarmists who simply blog out statistics and draw their own conclusions, they are even easier to get rid of. Feed them disinformation. "Leak" information to people you know will disburse it so you can look innocent and bring the patsy to "justice" while letting the alarmists chase dead ends. Let them have enough rope and, well, you know the result of that, don't you. Karl Marx certainly did.

    There is a revolution coming, to be sure. Its form is yet unclear, but it is coming. And when it comes, the winners will be the ones who understand the true use of discretion and subterfuge. For those of you who do not, I recommend a review of “The Prince” by Niccolò Machiavelli, with a careful review of “The Art of War” by Sun Tzu as well.

    Any of you think this is a little strange coming from a man of the cloth? If so, you might want to review the 6th Chapter of Ephesians, verses 11 through 18. No one, not even Jesus, said we were to be lambs taken to the slaughter without cause. True sacrifice has no meaning unless there is something to be gained by it.

    As the old saying goes, “The walls have ears.”.

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