Democracies Becoming Security States

Edward Snowden

[quote]What it comes down to, in the end, is: “Trust us.” And the trouble with that is that in recent decades our political elites have done precious little to deserve our trust. Now we’re being asked to suspend our disbelief as they eavesdrop on all of our online activities – to trust them, in a way, with the most intimate details of our social and private lives. And all on the basis of laws that they – or their security apparatuses – wrote in order to rationalize and legitimize their snooping.[/quote]

– John Naughton

From The Guardian, about the revelation that its Government Communications Center (GCHQ) has been eavesdropping on citizens for years through its own clandestine surveillance program called “Tempora”. It has also been collecting data gathered from the US PRISM program since 2010.

[quote]What we’re witnessing is the metamorphosis of our democracies into national security states in which the prerogatives of security authorities trump every other consideration and in which critical or sceptical appraisal of them is ruled out of court.[/quote]

China is laughing its collective head off right now, basking in what is surely the most biting example of Western hypocrisy in years. We have publicly shamed China for years over its lack of respect for liberty and justice, but when our wildly unrestricted surveillance programs are unearthed by people like Julian Assange and Edward Snowden, we look like fools who stand for nothing.

[quote]If Edward Snowden was Chinese and worked for the Chinese National Security Agency, Obama probably would already have had him to dinner at the White House and nominated him for the next Nobel Peace Prize.[/quote]

– Chinese netizen

Reveal the dark secrets of a political adversary and become a hero. Reveal the dark secrets of your own country and be vilified forever.

2013-06-25T10:48:41+00:00 Tuesday, June 25th, 2013|

Mainland China News

If you believe that China Daily has journalistic credibility, I’m about to challenge that belief. Or if you believe that China Daily is completely outside of the field of actual journalism, this won’t surprise you at all.

I was recently interviewed by China Daily and the article was published yesterday. I’m frustrated that they inserted so many fake quotes that they claim were said by me, many of which aren’t even correct English. I’m quite certain that what they did was speak to me and then approximate my words with quotes, in many cases completely changing the meaning of what I said.

Either they don’t how quotes work, or they are free to make up fake quotes at will. I’m guessing it’s the latter.

I don’t entirely blame the author, what with China being ranked #173 out of 179 countries on the Press Freedom Index. The problem is institutional. To be fair, I should add that I have done dozens of interviews of this type and this is the first time that I’ve noticed blatant misquotes throughout the text.

This article came to my attention when a stranger in another region of China emailed me saying that he read it. Upon reading the article I contacted the reporter and he responded within several hours saying that he would would remove all of the mis-attributed quotes in the online version.

China Daily article

2015-12-07T08:09:31+00:00 Thursday, June 6th, 2013|