The Rational Radicant // Anarchy & Anonymity
There was a movie that came out based on a book called Men Who Stare at Goats. It was a nonfiction account of interviews with some of the people involved in a special section of the military that investigated alternative ways of dealing with the enemy. It fell into a category of what is now referred to as Psy-Ops (psychological operations or psychological warfare if you will.) I often think about one part of the book where the author asks one of the men involved in Psy-Ops about what kind of stuff he thought they might have been doing at Abu Ghraib; and he says something along the lines of when he first saw the pictures, he wondered if they hadn’t been staged as a form of Psy-Ops in themselves and that there actually wasn’t anything happening there at all. Why? Just to mess with people’s minds, to keep a level of instability in the air.
Sometimes I question Anonymous and Occupy in the same way. I want to first say that I respect everything the Occupy movement stands for and has done. One of the problems I had with Occupy actually was what I saw as too many ‘anarchists’ using the moment to spur some sort of unnecessary chaos, like throwing a brick at a cop for no reason other than to just throw a brick at a cop. Some of this type of activity was supposedly by undercover police posing as protestors to initiate a violent breakup of the peaceful demonstrations. (Makes me dream of a left-wing security force to observe and protect protestors.) Could the start of Occupy have been initiated as a form of Psy-Ops? Arab Summer: could that actually have been us initiating unrest? Why not?
Anonymous also has proved that they too have a major voice and a very strong global presence in raising the middle finger to their opponents; this I also have much respect for. They will be labeled a terrorist organization within the next three years, guaranteed. But there’s a wee little doubting Tom in me that just wonders, “could this all be a ruse started by the government themselves?” Creating a boogeyman for the new age who is also seen as this light of hope for the oppressed… “It’s okay, I know Anonymous will be there to take down their website. Yeah, that’ll show ‘em!” It would be perfect to have this elusive mysterious entity with no real known members, making it easier to create more laws to “protect us” from this new enemy to “our freedoms.” It’s almost endless what they could pin on such a group. They could claim that this new group has propagated a revolution, when in reality no revolution of the sort was even a threat. Then the government could reign in on and revoke more liberties. We certainly see a ramping up of the government’s encroaching on and outright removal of our rights already. There’s the Patriot Act, NDAA, TSA and right now in Utah the NSA is building a data retrieval center that will do nothing but keep records of all our electronic activities: emails, text messages and cell phone calls. This is happening and I’m not wearing tinfoil underwear; look it up. They will be reading your mail. “Well, if you’re not doing anything wrong you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.” That’s right, so it should go both ways. We should be able to read all of their emails and texts. They do work for us, right?
Meanwhile, Bradley Manning sits in jail awaiting espionage charges and a life or death sentence. Julian Assange has been in home detention for almost 2 years without any charges! None. I may be off on the definition, but couldn’t these guys’ actions fall under whistleblowing? Shouldn’t whistleblowing for human rights, justice or government accountability be acceptable? Secrets are deception and our government deceives us; they deceive each other and the rest of the world deceives right back. It’s really funny when you think about what the realities of what the real reality really is, or even really means, really.