Monday, September 20, 2010

The New Soviet Union Is America

One of the most oppressive aspects of any totalitarian regime is the inability to talk freely. You just don't know who is a snitch and when something said innocently can  be twisted into sounding criminal, especially with all the regulations in a totalitarian regime. It could be a neighbor, a co-worker, a friend, or even your child, indoctrinated in totalitarian propaganda at school, that could turn you in.

I contend this is one of the cruelest parts of totalitarianism for the average person. It creates a paranoia about speaking freely. For your own safety, you must keep things bottled up inside. It is a form of solitary confinement.

In a way, it is kind of a very twisted version of the ominous Eagles song, Hotel California: You have freedom of speech to say anything you want anytime you want, just don't say anything in front of anyone cause you might go to jail.

Anyone who has spent any time with the now elderly people from Eastern Europe, who lived under the old Soviet Union regime, know the paranoia and fear they still carry with them about speaking freely.

Barbara Branden in her book about Ayn Rand, The Passion of Ayn Rand, recounts the story of how Rand's sister visited Rand in the U.S. from Russia.

Rand rented a limousine to pick up her sister from the airport. Rand's sister indicated to Rand that she didn't not want to talk in front of the limousine driver. Back at Rand's apartment, the sister wouldn't talk in front of the cleaning lady. What a terrible way to live.

And such a paranoia about speaking freely is slowly moving over America. The lead agency promoting this potential national death of individual spirit is the Securities and Exchange Commission. They may have no idea how to catch a Ponzi scheme operator like Bernie Madoff (even when letters are sent to them warning about Madoff!), but they sure have evil bastard lawyers who know how to protect the agency and expand the worst aspects of totalitarianism.

Their latest stunts include, as part of the Dodd-Frank Act, slipping in language which exempts them from the Freedom of Information Act. Thus, we don't get to see what they are up to at all. At the same time, they slipped other language into Dodd-Frank that will pay snitches 30% of all fine money collected by the SEC. In other words, while the SEC couldn't catch a real crook like Madoff, they are damn good at harassing those who only in the minds of the SEC have done anything wrong, e.g. Martha Stewart and Mark Cuban, and are perfectly willing to payoff those who provide them with leads for the bogus cases that they prefer to bring.

It won't take long before other agencies catch on to the SEC snitch program and before long the programs will be all over the place. And this being America, their will be some scumbag lawyer who will end up promoting the idea of being a snitch as a great thing to do. I can eventually see "Be a Snitch. Call Me." billboards.

In fact, it is already happening. Some really distorted thinking lawyer, Stuart Meissner, who not surprisingly worked for the New York State Attorney General's Office (which was once run by the complete hypocrite, Eliot Spitzer), is about to start running snitch ads in movie theatres.

NyPo explains:

Wanna get rich? Snitch.

That's the new money-making mantra for folks with access to confidential information on Wall Street.

With the release of Oliver Stone's new movie, "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps" in mind, Stuart Meissner, a securities lawyer based in Midtown, is tweaking a message made famous by the first "Wall Street": that greed is good for people standing on the right side of the law, too.

Uncle Sam recently started offering rich bounties to folks who help put away bad guys -- like Gordon Gekko, the central character of Stone's film, played by Michael Douglas, who goes to jail for insider trading.

Meissner came up with the idea to advertise for snitches who know of illegal activity at their firm. His in-theater ads and fliers will recruit whistleblowers with the promise of riches to come.

"Having the ad right there with the movie reminds people who have information regarding securities violations, 'Hey, I can make money and also do a good thing,' " said Meissner, who previously worked with the financial crimes unit of the New York State Attorney General's Office.

The ads, which are set to music similar to the theme from "Law & Order," tell moviegoers they can remain anonymous with their tips if they go through a lawyer.
Welcome to the new USSR.


  1. I was born in a Soviet Union state. I still live here, even though I have lived in USA and couple of other European countries.

    You see.. this ''not wanting to talk in front of other people'' thing is still here. It has deformed a bit, but it is still here. I was born in 1980's, so I don't personally remember much from the Soviet times, but my parents do. However, societies here are still very much influenced by what was going on here. For example, people don't talk about stuff in a grocery stores (when other people are around), they don't discuss things in a taxicab, and recently it has gone even worse... people don't like to talk about things over the phone as well. It's like we're moving back to the Soviet era step by step. It's all about tapping the phones (it's an issue here too), so people just don't want to be misunderstood or anything. I am in my 20's, but even I don't like to talk about stuff over Internet and/or telephone anymore. When I was younger, I used to kid around drugs or stuff like that (you know kids... ''if I were a drugdealer, I'd buy a Bentley''). I don't want to do this anymore because you never know who is listening to my conversations. They might misunderstand me and next thing I know, I am in some type of black list... being followed by our local CIA.

    So it's quite depressing, if you start to thing about that. I don't talk about things in public (never have), I don't talk about stuff over Internet/telephone - wouldn't be surprised if I wouldn't want to talk about things with my friends as well.

    But yeah... I am a strong supporter of Austrian economics and I just feel sorry for what's happening in USA. I love this country... used to live there and would sure want to return one day. But not to a new USSR. I really hope you guys can make a difference!! I am out there for you guys!!!

  2. Great article. It's just unbelievable when you think about. The freest country in the world but you are afraid to say anything or someone in the Gov't can make your life a living hell. It doesn't matter if you are guilty or not, the torturous process will make you think twice.

  3. Are you a "Tea Party" activist? Do look at guns and ammunition on the internet? Do you read monitor the price of Precious Metals? Then I'll bet the government has a file on you 5 inches thick. You don't have to say anything to anyone. Records are being stored regarding all of your internet activity, and Although your phone conversations are not private any more. The big brother government is now watching your every move. America is now like the Soviet Union.

  4. At the airports it's constantly coming over the loudspeaker: "report any suspicious activity". Who decides what's suspicious? Hell I'd say the behaviour of most of the law enforcement and gov workers is suspicious compared to I consider normal.

  5. "The U.S. Department of State of Defense funded numerous ... studies about U.S.-USSR convergence and world order under UN control. ... Produced by the Institute for Defense Analyses for the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, the [1963] Phoenix studies openly advocated "unification" of the U.S. and the USSR." (Quoted from Global Tyranny...Step by Step by WIlliam F. Jasper, pp. 37, 38.)

    Instead of merging with the USSR, we are becoming the old USSR.

  6. Add the new Hate Speech laws to this and you really get a poison brew. I can see communities setting up stocks for people caught saying politically incorrect things about gays, minorities or bureaucrats. It's headed our way.

  7. Screw the government and all the criminals in it!! Am I going to jail now?

  8. Many nursing homes subscribe to a snoop agency that offers $1000 rewards to anyone who can dream up something to accuse a nurse of some politically incorrect 'abuse.' Of course, the aides LOVE that. They can call anonymously. Imagine, trying to get people to do their work when they are all counting how much money they can make by snitching on you? The nursing boards have a 'zero tolerance' policy that requires investigation, even if the accuser later 'recants.; It is not just the old USSR, it is the Inquisition.

  9. No, America is the continuation of the German Third Reich.

    @DTB - I spend lots of times in the "old" Soviet Union and gee I could talk more openly than in the US where almost every citizen is a patriot murderous Nazi. In the Soviet Union they didn't force me to go to church, in America at school they did.

    We all have different experiences and I see Russia as the only hope to get rid of the new fascist thread coming from USA.

  10. The USA is the fourth Reich not the continuation of the third. That's why the CIA brought over all the top Nazis in operation paperclip

  11. It's not clear to me why anyone would think that this is such an unusual 'development' in the US.

    If anything, it is entirely consistent with US history - from Prohibition, the Hays code, the proto-Nazi salute as children pledged allegiance to the flag (the salute was abandoned in 1941, from memory) through to HUAC/McCartheyism and government infiltration of every 'heretic' movement since the 1950s, this snitch-ism didn't spring unbidden from the Malebolges.

    Virtually all of these - and in particular the HUAC/McCarthy era - depended CRITICALLY on snitches; many states had separate 'loyalty oaths' in which folks had to pledge to be good sheep and to report 'subversives'.

    The US's (and particularly the US government's) supposed commitment to liberty was incredibly short-lived - less than a decade after the Constition was ratified, armed government thugs descended on tax protesters - and any time I read anything about the supposed Founding Principles I remind myself that Thomas Jefferson - for all his high-flown rhetoric - never freed his slaves.

    Now Tom Paine never owned a slave... but he also never became President. THERE was a man who was genuinely committed to the rights of men - for which he almost got killed (after the French revolution when he advocated mercy towards the old regime).

    The US is going the same way as all would-be hegemons - from Sparta to Rome to the United Kingdom, there has always come a time when all that was left was the sloganeering. That's where the US is now (arguably, that's where it has been since Korea, but the final push to insolvency and decline was taken during the Reagan era with its massive off-balance-sheet profligacy)