This comes as no surprise to some of us. The wiretapping issue is serious and deserves the attention it gets but there are other programs far more dangerous.
Here are a few realities we have come to accept so far.
- Every noncash purchase we make is recorded electronically in detail.
All personal medical and financial information is highly detailed, documented, archived, profiled, owned and brokered by several different private companies
Our telecommunications(phone calls) and email are documented, archived, available for sale, wiretapped, profiled and marketed.
Our internet search records have been recorded and archived by the various search engines and that data is archived in databases.
Our blog entries, comments, website form data, and similar thoughts are recorded in electronic digital format and stored by the entities that own the sites we interact on.
Our ISP services keep detailed records of all of our online activities
This is only a partial list and each of us could easily add more to the understanding of how everything we do is somehow documented and stored for future reference. We have come to accept this in several ways while some methods have been forced on us. Profiles are created for marketing purposes to make our lives easier. Storing favorite bookmarks, targeted content, preferences, newsletter lists, book topic announcements, alerts and again more ways than I can list here.
I have mentioned in comments here before the possible scenario of being turned down for a loan or other application based on a summary of the applicant’s internet browser history log. It’s not tinfoil terroitory and the threat of wrongfull prosecution by misperception of data is with us. The evolution and development of software to conduct data analysis through deep data mining enables the govt and/or private companies to connect all of the dots in our lives based on the factors they choose to profile.
Check out the power of this program called ADVISE
Little-known data-collection system could troll news, blogs, even e-mails. Will it go too far?
The US government is developing a massive computer system that can collect huge amounts of data and, by linking far-flung information from blogs and e-mail to government records and intelligence reports, search for patterns of terrorist activity.
The system – parts of which are operational, parts of which are still under development – is already credited with helping to foil some plots. It is the federal government’s latest attempt to use broad data-collection and powerful analysis in the fight against terrorism. But by delving deeply into the digital minutiae of American life, the program is also raising concerns that the government is intruding too deeply into citizens’ privacy.
“We don’t realize that, as we live our lives and make little choices, like buying groceries, buying on Amazon, Googling, we’re leaving traces everywhere,” says Lee Tien, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “We have an attitude that no one will connect all those dots. But these programs are about connecting those dots – analyzing and aggregating them – in a way that we haven’t thought about. It’s one of the underlying fundamental issues we have yet to come to grips with.”
A major part of ADVISE involves data-mining – or “dataveillance,” as some call it. It means sifting through data to look for patterns. If a supermarket finds that customers who buy cider also tend to buy fresh-baked bread, it might group the two together. To prevent fraud, credit-card issuers use data-mining to look for patterns of suspicious activity.
What sets ADVISE apart is its scope. It would collect a vast array of corporate and public online information – from financial records to CNN news stories – and cross-reference it against US intelligence and law-enforcement records. The system would then store it as “entities” – linked data about people, places, things, organizations, and events, according to a report summarizing a 2004 DHS conference in Alexandria, Va. The storage requirements alone are huge – enough to retain information about 1 quadrillion entities, the report estimated. If each entity were a penny, they would collectively form a cube a half-mile high – roughly double the height of the Empire State Building.
Here In Reality has some information on one of the architects responsible for this ability
Who’s John Poindexter?
A retired Navy Admiral, John Poindexter lost his job as National Security Adviser under Ronald Reagan, and was convicted of conspiracy, lying to Congress, defrauding the government, and destroying evidence in the Iran Contra scandal. 
What’s the Information Awareness Office (IAO)?
It’s a new office created by the Pentagon agency DARPA after 9/11 to gather intelligence through electronic sources like the internet, phone, and fax lines. 
Why did John Poindexter get the job?
He was the Vice President of Syntek Technologies, a government contractor. Syntek and Poindexter worked for years with DARPA to develop Genoa, a surveillance device that’s a combination cutting-edge search engine, sophisticated information harvesting program”, and a “peer-to-peer” file sharing system. Kind of a military-grade Google/Napster for use in instant analysis of electronic data.
So John Poindexter, along with Oliver North and many others, went behind President Reagan’s back (supposedly) and sold weapons to the Iranians (illegally), then took the money they made and funneled it to the brutal “Contra” army that they built in Central America (also illegally). See  
It should be noted that while outrage and debate have been known concerning felons voting, it appears acceptable to give GOP hero felons the keys to the jail. It’s crucial to remember that a large percentage of voters consider these guys heros and it would be no shock to see more of North pushing for total surveillance and votes, both.
This isn’t exclusively a govt trust issue involved. It’s crucial to consider that these programs are run by private contractors.
There’s another iceberg called Starlight
DHS to upgrade enforcement systems
Sytel, based in Bethesda, Md., led a team that received a task order under ICE’s Starlight contract to carry out the Enforcement Systems Program. The task order includes an initial $6.5 million base year and as many as five option years that could bring the value of the contract to as much as $34 million, EDS said.
EDS will operate under a subcontract to provide planning, maintenance, development, help desk, database and operations support for the following systems:
- Enforcement Integrated Database, a central repository for enforcement data
- Apprehension Booking Module, a system for capturing data on illegal alien activity and supporting DHS programs to arrest, detain and deport aliens
- Worksite Enforcement Activity Reporting System, also known as Lynx, which stores and retrieves data about employers who violate immigration laws
- Criminal Alien Investigation System, which automates investigation work related to deportation cases
- Deportable Alien Control System, which automates ICE’s deportable alien tracking
- General Counsel Electronic Management system, a case management system for ICE attorneys
- Detention and Removal Operations Program Support, which automates investigations flagged by the interagency Joint Terrorist Task Forces as high profile or related to terrorist activity.
Now, I think the issue is how the govt can manipulate all of our information to create a threat profile in order to prosecute any one of us. However, in light of the ‘tinfoillly’ nature of this subject, I have one other suggestion.
FBI internet surveillance: Is oversight possible?
Wait a second. In this AP article on how the FBI’s Carnivore’s internet wiretap software has been replaced by “superior” commercial wiretap software….
From the same site, just for the appreciation of all things tinfoilly…
File this one under bizarre, but POGO pal LC was listening to the Starlight Mints, an Oklahoma band often compared to the Flaming Lips, and noticed that Track 5 of one of their CDs is titled, “Valerie Flames.”
This diary is not comprehensive on the subject and intended only as a means to encourage either individual research or surrender.
If the democrats want to win based in part on fiscal responsibility, stop wasting our tax dollars to screw us into submission. At least get competitive bidding when you sell us out.