BY WILLIAM C. HENRY Be afraid, people, be very afraid. Of the Taliban, al Qaeda, or terrorism in general? No. Street gangs, career criminals, or crime altogether? Nope. Rising prices at the pump and on grocery store shelves, or inflation overall? Not even close. Folks, I’ve got something to tell you about that should raise every hair on the back or your neck and send a stampede of shivers right through your soul! It’s called the National Security Agency or NSA. It’s headquartered in Fort Meade, MD, and your hard earned tax dollars–a whole bunch of them–as well as your “indomitable trust” are turning it into the most INTRUSIVE and ALL-INCLUSIVE high tech government-run SPY operation ever conceived! Believe me, this is something that deserves your duly undivided DREAD! This makes “1984” look like a glimpse at grade school test monitoring! At long last, your Federal Government has been afforded the ability to spy on literally EVERYTHING!
Let’s talk about just the NSA HEADQUARTER’S pure physical size (there’s another good-sized “branch” in San Antonio, Texas, a really big third at Fort Gordon, GA, and a really, really big fourth under construction at Camp Williams, Utah–to the tune of $1.5 Billion so far!). The Fort Meade complex rests on 5,000 rolling acres adjacent to Odenton in Anne Arundel County, MD. 112 of those acres have been paved for parking. The under-roof facilities at FM measure approximately 6.3 MILLION square feet (plus some 10 ACRES UNDERGROUND!). Its employees number roughly 20,000. However, all of these figures are subject to upward change on a daily basis since the government expects to increase the work force by 10,000, and the floor space square footage by another 8 MILLION, over the next 15 years. Any neck hairs stiffening yet?
Now for what’s going on UNDER that Fort Meade roof. Let’s start with the fact that the NSA maintains the largest work force of mathematicians anywhere on the planet. All roughly 700 of them (there are 24 on the hiring committee alone) and thousands upon thousands of other assorted techno-taskers extract, digest, decode and do God knows what else with the unimaginable mass of information–information possibly about YOU my friends–collected and cranked out by the largest, most sophisticated, battery of computers ever assembled in one place. Experts have speculated that the capacity of these computers is such that they can intercept, analyze and store every email sent or received daily by everyone on earth. It is also purported that there is no such thing as a password they cannot break. The electricity bill alone is said to run $70 MILLION+ annually. Please check out http://tomweston.net/
Here’s the multi-billion dollar question: Precisely WHO and WHAT are the NSA spying on (I ask that not leastwise because of that dicey little “warrantless surveillance” business that has “bugged” us ever since the Dubya administration)? Well, it turns out the answer to that question is pretty much “mute” since the government, for all intents and purposes, isn’t talking. So, where does that leave us? Pretty much back at paragraph one and those two little touchy-feely words “indomitable trust.” For Christ’s sake Americans, when will SO much spying finally become TOO much spying for you?! Don’t forget, folks, what the NSA is doing is in ADDITION to what the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Department of Homeland Security Office of Intelligence and Analysis, and ANOTHER 1,265 government organizations that work on national security related issues at some 10,000 locations across the United States are doing!!!!!!! I beg of you, please go to this link for some truly mind boggling information on this particular matter: http://projects.
It’s interesting to note that President Obama promised to provide us with “open government,” and to curtail the deplorable “excesses” so brazenly exhibited by the previous administration. Unfortunately, his actions have all but drowned out his words. In actuality he has greatly EXPANDED the size and scope of government spying! He has also clamped down unmercifully on those who would dare to expose the unwarranted secrecy, waste, and corruption of purpose so inescapable with such all-encompassing intrusiveness. I invite you to learn more about the latest example of this kind of travesty at: http://www.newyorker.com/
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Fed up early stage septuagenarian who has actually been most of there and done most of that. Born and raised in the picturesque Pocono Mountains. Quite well educated. Very lucky to have been born into a well-schooled and somewhat prosperous family. Long divorced. One beautiful, brilliant daughter. Two far above average grandsons. Semi-retired (how does anyone manage to do it completely these days?) and fully-tired of bullshit. Uncle of the Editor-In-Chief.
1,582 = The number of Americans killed in action in Afghanistan
11,191 = The number of Americans wounded in Afghanistan.
0 = To date the number of financial industry kingpins indicted for having committed the most massive FRAUD in American history.