DHS To America: We Own You

While Americans have been scandalized by stories of TSA thugs helping themselves to the electronic equipment of the passengers they are allegedly suppose to protect, a much worse violation of rights has been going on. As horrible as it is to have government thieves take your iPad, at least in theory they were not supposed to do so. Your iPad is your property and no one is supposed to take it.

But what about the data on your iPad, laptop, or any other electronic device?

In the case of stolen iPads, we are facing government agents who are dabbling in criminal activity that is not part of their official job. In the case of stealing all the data on your iPad, we are facing a criminal organization operating as an agency of our government. And now they have officially told us that that is what they do and there is nothing we can do about it. They have issued the memo: we own you.

Here is the background: on August 27, 2009 the Department of Homeland Slavemastery released a memo promising, “The DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties (CRCL) will also conduct a Civil Liberties Impact Assessment within 120 days.”

Now their assessment has been released three years later. Here is the executive summary sentence:

“We also conclude that imposing a requirement that officers have reasonable suspicion in order to conduct a border search of an electronic device would be operationally harmful without concomitant civil rights/civil liberties benefits” (emphasis added)

So it is official. We can be searched without any basis for suspicion. The message from the Department of Humiliating Servitude is loud and clear: We own you.

DHS is a criminal organization. Here is the law that applies:

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

I am not going to waste the effort arguing that “papers” and “effects” includes electronic devices. That is covered by the word, “duh.”

But what I do hate is how much Obama and Napolitano get blamed for all this by conservative Republicans when it is patently obvious that Bush and Cheney were also ones, long before we heard it from Rahm Emanuel, who were not going to let an emergency go to waste. They and their cronies saddled us with this monstrosity; it has grown worse under Obama but he didn’t hatch it. The Republican Administration from 2001 to 2008 told us the Radical Islamists hated us “for our freedoms,” and then pursued a campaign of appeasement by getting rid of them one by one.

I’m not bitter. Most people throughout most of history have lived as slaves under government occupation. No reason I should expect myself or my children to be some kind of exceptions to the rule (though I believe some day no one on the planet will live under such regimes any more).

But I do bitterly resent having to pretend that this is still America. And I resent even more being expected to impute all the sins of the government to one party and treat the “opposite” party as the good guys. If you have eyes at all you know that this prison is being constructed by bipartisan builders.

When DHS tells us, “we own you,” they are speaking for both parties that share power in our bureausaurian government.