The USA: Now also the Internet policeman?

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

Not content with its self-appointed role as world cop the United States now have decided it also must police and have total control of the Internet, with full power of decision as to what is allowed and what is not.

This is rather interesting if we consider that if and when Iran, or China or any other any other country block access to certain sites, especially American propaganda ones, the US is the first to call “foul” or “illegal censorship”. It appears there are two standards and two set of rules; one for the USA and one for everyone else.

While, according to the USA, it is foul and illegal censorship when sites, especially American sites, are being blocked by China, Russia, Iran, it is not, it would seem, when it is done by or on behest of the American government and its backers.

A variety of supposed justifications are put about as also in the latter half of January 2012 when Megaupload, a major file sharing and -hosting platform, was shut down but the US authorities and four people were arrested in conjunction with this in New Zealand on order of the FBI.

The SOPA proposals are not even law as yet and still the US takes it upon itself to close down websites or orders, and I stress orders, other countries to shut them down.

America is getting too big, way too big, for its little boots. A serious counterbalance is needed. Someone, some country, who is prepared to put the US in its place but there is no one left out there.

The USSR, which was the counterbalance, faulty as it was, is history: Others just simply do not exist with the possible exception of China.

When President Obama came to power it was hoped by many that the excesses and abuses of the Bush era were at an end. Alas, it was all but rhetoric and business continues as usual.

The SOPA proposals began under Bush, if I am not mistaken, and Obama and those that actually pull the strings behind the scenes – yes, all any US President is is a puppet – want this power and even more in order to totally control the Internet.

The Powers-That-Be do not like the freedoms of the Internet (and of digital publishing) and the fact that it gives ordinary people a voice as citizen journalists and -reporters, as Bloggers. The fear the Blogger like nothing else.

The Internet allows – in its current state – people to publish and distribute their own books without the control of publishing houses and the censors and that too goes very much against the grain of The Powers-That-Be.

To The Powers-That-Be the Internet, and the freedom that it gives people, is an anathema and while they may – as a cover – have a go at the likes of China with regards to restrictions imposed there on Internet usages, etc., the restrictions that they have in mind to impose on the Internet per se are even more draconian than those restrictive countries employ.

They know that the Internet can be a tool used against them and hence they will try to find a way, under guises and excuses, curb the Net and its freedoms, if we are not careful.

The most dangerous government is not one that is (openly) hostile against its people and its neighbors but one that seems to be benign and friendly. It is those where we let our guard down at our peril for they are capable of lulling us to sleep.

The Powers-That-Be, which control the US, and probably, by proxy, also the UK and the EU, are not benign and the Internet, and the capacity that it gives to the people, gives them the jitters. And while, as said, they may rant and rave when during demonstrations and actions such as in the “Arab Spring” the Internet was cut in places such as Egypt, Libya, etc., they intend to do the very same if protests happen on their patch.

America, however, is the one that wants to call the shots and that absolutely everywhere, as one can see by the actions against Megaupload (and the attempt to silence WikiLeaks). One can but wonder as to what was really being distributed by Megaupload. Was it a movie about something sensitive or what?

The US government has ordered YouTube before to pull videos and user accounts with regards to footage from demonstrations such as the Occupy Movement ones and the related brutal police actions against peaceful protesters, and others. So, I guess we may as well wonder...

We need to have a counterbalance again and in the lieu of the USSR is will have to be “We The People”.

© 2012