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The Death of Democracy in the U.S. - 13 factors which are contributing to smoldering discontent in the United States of America

The death of Democracy in the U.S.

13 factors which are contributing to 

smoldering discontent in 

the United States of America

Things are not looking good in the U.S. It is transforming into an Orwellian dystopian society. 

The United States of America (U.S.) is a Republic - as is Russia, China and North Korea. The difference between these countries is that the U.S. was founded on a Constitution and a Bill of Rights - and, normally operates as a representative democracy - with elected representatives operating in the interest of "We, the People."

What happened to Democracy?

Democracy is a form of government in which all eligible citizens participate equally - either directly or indirectly through elected representatives in the proposal, development, and creation of laws. It encompasses social, religious, cultural, ethnic and racial equality, justice, and liberty. The term originates from the Greekδημοκρατία (dēmokratía) "rule of the people"; the term is an antonym (the opposite) of ἀριστοκρατία (aristokratia) "rule of an elite".

Rule by Monarchy, Aristocracy, Plutocracy, Corporatocracy, Oligarchy, Military Junta and Dictatorship etc is focused on the interests of those in positions of power - not the public. Under these forms of rule, the public interest is a secondary consideration, if it is considered at all.

There have been dramatic changes in the governance of the U.S. in recent years. Following 9/11, the threat of "terrorism" was put forward as a bogeyman to Americans. Fear was used by people with an insatiable appetite for power, control and money; and imperialistic ambitions. The bogeyman of terrorism was used to undermine the constitution to achieve this end. 

Laws have been passed to consolidate power and control within the government administration (which is in turn heavily influenced by an unelected power elite, and in some instances actually written by them); and to allow government agencies to operate without respecting the Constitution and Bill of Rights. 

Propaganda and censorship are being used to dumb down the public - and much of the mainstream media colludes with this. Laws have been written to suppress dissent. The police have become militarized, and are being indoctrinated to view the general public as dangerous. Government agencies are encouraging Americans to report on people to the government.

And then there is the surveillance - unfettered and intrusive into every aspect of life. Even software and hardware has been tampered with by the government to insure that nothing can be kept secret from them.  

Privacy is a fundamental necessity for freedom to exist.

Americans, bar the elite - no longer have true representation in government. They no longer have privacy and their freedom is threatened - not by an outside enemy, but by their own government.

Devolution to a Surveillance Police State

police state is a state in which the government exercises rigid and repressive controls over the social, economic, and political life of the population. A police state typically exhibits elements of totalitarianism and social control, and there is usually little or no distinction between the law and the exercise of political power by the executive.

The inhabitants of a police state experience restrictions on their mobility, and on their freedom to express or communicate political or other views, which are subject to police monitoring or enforcement. Political control may be exerted by means of surveillance and a police force which operates outside the boundaries normally imposed by a constitutional state.

Project Censored notes the following signs of an evolving Police State:
1. Since the passage of the 2001 PATRIOT Act, the United States has become increasingly monitored and militarized at the expense of civil liberties. 
2. The 2012 passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) has allowed the military to detain indefinitely without trial any US citizen that the government labels a terrorist or an accessory to terrorism, 
3. President Barack Obama’s signing of the National Defense Resources Preparedness Executive Order has authorized widespread federal and military control of the national economy and resources during “emergency and non-emergency conditions.” 
4. Since 2010, the Department of Homeland Security’s If You See Something, Say Something™ campaign has encouraged the public to report all suspicious activity to local authorities, even though actions that the DHS identifies as “suspicious” include the constitutionally protected right to criticize the government or engage in nonviolent protest.

John Whitehead, President of the Rutherford Institute has written a book - Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State. He identifies the following as signs:

1. Government spying
2. Militarized police
3. Police shootings of unarmed citizens
4. The erosion of rights within your own home
5. Police empowered to do strip searches and forcefully draw blood or body fluids and probe intimately and total body scanning at airports
6. Use of drones for domestic surveillance
7. Criminalizing childish behavior
8. Common Core State Standards 
These standards, which were developed through a partnership between big government and corporations. They are being rolled out in 45 states and the District of Columbia and will create a generation of test-takers molded and shaped by the federal government and its corporate allies into what it considers to be ideal citizens. It will affect the school curriculum from kindergarten through 12th grade

Life in the Emerging American Police State: What's in Store for Our Freedoms in 2014

What does a police state look like?

Here is a Wikipedia reference on mass surveillance in the U.S.

Corporatocracy and the Power Elite

The U.S. has devolved into a Corporotocracy.

Corporatocracy, refers to an economic and political system controlled by the power elite who are primarily focussed on corporate interests. The power elite in the context of a Corporatocracy are powerful, influential individuals (largely unelected) who control the process of determining society's corporate, political and military policies. 

The corporate power elite typically favors neoliberal policies, including: globalization in the context of neoliberalism: It generally promotes:
1. Laissez Faire (an economic environment in which transactions between private parties are free from government restrictions, tariffs, and subsidies, with only enough regulations to protect property rights. The phrase laissez-faire is French and literally means "let [them] do," but it broadly implies "let it be," "let them do as they will," or "leave it alone."); and,

2. Free Trade (a policy by which a government does not discriminate against imports or interfere with exports by applying tariffs (to imports) or subsidies (to exports); and 

3. Open Markets (used generally to refer to a situation close to free trade and in a more specific technical sense to interbank trade in securities); and,

4. Privatization (Privatisation, also spelled privatization, may have several meanings. Primarily, it is the process of transferring ownership of a business, enterprise, agency, public service, or public property from the public sector (a government) to the private sector, either to a business that operates for a profit or to a nonprofit organization. It may also mean government outsourcing of services or functions to private firms, e.g. revenue collection, law enforcement, and prison management; and,

5. Deregulation (Deregulation is the process of removing or reducing state regulations. It is therefore opposite of regulation, which refers to the process of the government regulating certain activities. Opposition to deregulation arises due to concerns regarding environmental pollution, and environmental quality standards (such as the removal of regulations on hazardous materials), health and safety, financial uncertainty, and constraining monopolies.)

Sociologist C Wright Mills identified 6 types of Power Elite in the U.S in his 1956 book: The Power Elite:
  • the "Metropolitan 400" - members of historically notable local families in the principal American cities, generally represented on the Social Register
  • "Celebrities" - prominent entertainers and media personalities
  • the "Chief Executives" - presidents and CEO's of the most important companies within each industrial sector
  • the "Corporate Rich" - major landowners and corporate shareholders
  • the "Warlords" - senior military officers, most importantly the Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • the "Political Directorate" - "fifty-odd men of the executive branch" of the U.S. federal government, including the senior leadership in the Executive Office of the President
    sometimes variously drawn from elected officials of the Democratic and Republican parties, but usually professional government bureaucrats.

There are at least three so-called "Think Tanks" that regularly gather together members of the "power elite" and other influential people from the U.S. and other countries (including politicians, Secretaries of StateCIA directors, senior military leaders, bankers, directors of large businesses, lawyers, professors, and senior media figures). They meet to network, but they are given talks which serve to indoctrinate and disseminate information to this influential group - with the objective of furthering the corporate, political and military agenda of the very powerful people at the top of these organizations.

These are:

It is the elite, of the power elite who set the agenda for these and other influential think tanks - who are likely the people who constitute the real power behind elected government in the U.S. and a number of other countries. It is they who covertly manipulate the U.S. government (and other governments) through meetings where speakers are chosen to pass specific messages (i.e. the influential audience is indoctrinated to think the way the puppet masters want them to think, and act in a way that serves the puppet masters' ends). 

Here is a link to quotations from 2 books written by one of the most powerful men in the world, Zbigniew Brzezinski - who co-founded the Trilateral Commission with David Rockefeller, and is a long-standing member of the Council on Foreign Affairs and the Bilderberg Group.

When brilliant charismatic people of power and influence can convince others that imperialism and authoritarianism is the way to go, and that democracy is an impediment to progress - is it any wonder that democracy is under threat the world over - and is virtually a dead duck in the U.S?


Elections and the illusion of Democracy

The practice of elections is not in itself evidence that a country is a democracy. 

For example, since the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak in 2011, Egyptians have voted for constitutional reforms, parliaments, and presidents. They have seen many of those reforms, parliaments, and presidents overturned or ousted, one by one - often by decree.

Democracy implies government by those chosen by the people, who represent the people's interests. Unfortunately lack of true representation of the people's interests by their elected representatives has become endemic, not just in Egypt.
Such countries are not democracies. They are authoritarian states of various forms.

Voting under these circumstances is used as a means to suppress public dissent - by creating the illusion that the public has influence on government.

The evidence indicates that currently the U.S. government administration is operating as an authoritarian Corporatocracy strongly influenced by a Power Elite (who in turn indoctrinate politicians, senior members of government, intelligence agencies, military, bankers, directors of large businesses, lawyers, professors, and senior media figures). Militarization of police, and excessive police empowerment, coupled with unfettered pervasive surveillance is also indicative of a Surveillance Police State.

13 factors that are are contributing to 

smoldering discontent in the U.S.

Globalization and decades of neoliberal policies; a casino economy; war without end; and greed and opportunism have taken their toll in the U.S. The virtual nullification of it's Constitution and Bill of Rights; coupled with the loss of privacy and freedom due to previously unheard of levels of intrusive surveillance are major developments have added to growing dissatisfaction. 

13 factors that are contributing to smoldering discontent in the U.S.

1. The U.S. government failed to protect the public from predatory and deceitful financial institutions - and the public is still feeling the pain, and still at risk. 

The U.S. government failed to adequately punish dishonest and negligent bankers and financiers - who were in positions of public trust. They fined the corporations, but the individuals who made the decisions and led the action for the most part, just got a light slap on the hand. 

Corporations aren't people. Fining a concept (a Corporation) will not be a lasting deterrent because a Corporation does not make decisions and take actions. People in Corporations do that. People working under the umbrella of a corporation should not be shielded for acts they were responsible for that constituted fraud, willful negligence or other harm. The human beings who made those decisions and acted fraudulently or negligently should have received major financial penalties - along with jail time where appropriate. That would have served as more of a deterrent for other potential opportunists driven by greed.  

While letting the people who triggered a major economic collapse get away with it, the U.S. government has persecuted and prosecuted members of the public for protesting about this aberration. This sign of a government that favors big business over the public interest has not gone un-noticed.

The bankruptcies that resulted have had substantial ongoing negative consequences on many people. The public has had to fund the bailout of dishonest, negligent banks and financial institutions. In the meantime CEOs continue to accrue exorbitant incomes and other benefits. The injustice of this is an ongoing major sore point.

The banking and finance industry has recovered, and then some - such that 10 of the biggest 25 companies in the world (as reported in Forbes Global 2000) are banks or financial institutions. 5 of these are U.S. based (4 are Chinese.)
(This of course does not include banks that are not publicly listed, such as the international banks or the private banks).

The vast amount of money in banks includes savings and pensions etc of a vast number of people, businesses, industries, organizations and governments.

With that in mind, it has been said that Wall St continues to gamble with America's (not to mention the world's) financial future; and that the U.S. effectively has a Casino Economy.

The speculative Casino Economy, fueled by greed - has continued to be the order of the day. This makes the financial markets in which savings and pensions are invested inherently uncertain and unpredictable. In addition, for years, the value of companies have not been based on some rational objective estimation of their physical assets, plus the contribution of its workers. Instead the price to earnings ratio often bears no relation to the reality of a company's true assets. 

Tens of millions of working family "investors", through pension funds or the various mutual funds, etc., never signed up for banks and financial institutions to play Russian Roulette with their life's savings.

But, the banksters (*robber barons) often used workers’ pension funds and savings and other institutional assets linked to workers’ capital. These were prime sources of investment dollars for the corporate corruption ponzi schemes, many of them criminal on a magnitude previously unseen. This has had devastating consequences on many people.
(*Robber baron is a term that arose in the 19th century in reference to businessmen who used what were considered to be exploitative practices to amass their wealth. These practices included exerting control over national resources, accruing high levels of government influence, paying extremely low wages, squashing competition by acquiring competitors in order to create monopolies and eventually raise prices, and schemes to sell stock at inflated prices to unsuspecting investors in a manner which would eventually destroy the company for which the stock was issued and impoverish investors. The term combines the sense of criminal ("robber") and illegitimate aristocracy (a baron is an illegitimate role in a republic.) Sound familiar?

Where are the regulations to adequately protect the public from the banksters and robber barons?
Where are the regulations that will adequately protect the public's savings and pensions if the new bubble bursts?
Where are the deterrents against banks and financiers speculating on hot air etc?

The globalists, neoliberals, libertarians and other far right capitalism devotees don't want government regulations that protect the public, because that will interfere with their goal to maximize profit (which for some includes using fair means or foul). Governments are also pushing policies that will undermine protective regulations in the notorious TPPA, TAFTA and TTIP so-called globalist trade agreements.

Unmitigated greed, a bloated military and surveillance budget and an addiction to war have been major contributors to the U.S. debt.

The greater the national debt - and the greater the exposure to a casino economy - the greater the risk that any country may be called on by their debtors to pay up - and as a consequence have its resources taken over by the lurking vultures of the international and private banks.

If the banks and financial institutions lose their current bets in the casino economy, and go belly up again - it is doubtful that the U.S. economy (which has already accrued to over $17 trillion dollars in debt) could handle the fall-out.

The unthinkable might occur and the U.S. may be forced to make arrangements with the international banks - as occurred in Cyprus last year. In addition the banks will likely dictate what government is to do policy wise in order to qualify - in other words they will have attained a degree of control over a country (as happened in Cyprus). If that occurs, and large sums of money are removed from people's savings, it is fair to expect monumental ructions in the U.S. as well as in other countries, as the economic fall-out spreads.

2. Globalization and neoliberal policies including privatization have resulted in loss of local businesses, industries and jobs. 

Political spin continues to hide this.

Here is a list of the number of U.S. retailers known to be closing stores, going (away), bankrupt, or going out of business known to date (May) 2014:

Compare it with 2013. It has increased dramatically.

These closing businesses are associated with more job losses. That is just the retail end. America's biggest manufacturing companies continue to move factories offshore and eliminate thousands of American jobs.

Unemployment is endemic but the true degree of it is hidden because of the way the government spins the numbers.

In the U.S. persons are classified as unemployed if they do not have a job, and have actively looked for work in the prior 4 weeks, and are currently available for work.

To qualify as actively looking for work, in the previous 4 weeks, the person without work must have:
1. contacted an employer directly or have a job interview; or applied to a public or private employment agency or friends or relatives or a school or university for employment; or
2. sent out resumes or filled out applications, or
3. checked union or professional registers or
4. undertaken some other means of active job search.
If they are without work, but didn't do these things within the previous 4 weeks - they are not counted in the unemployment statistics.

On the other hand, people are counted as employed if
1. they did any work at all (regardless of how few the hours) during the survey week, or
2. if they did not work (and regardless whether they were paid or not while they were off work) because they were:
i. on vacation
ii. or ill or
iii. dealing with a family emergency or
iv. or on parental leave or
v. involved in an industrial dispute or
vi. prevented from work by bad weather.

As a consequence, government statistics are skewed and do not reflect reality. They certainly do not reflect the degree of underemployment which is adding to social stress and poverty.

New numbers that were just released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, indicate that:
20 percent of American families do not have a single person that is working.  

Here is the link to the 25 April 2014 Bureau of Labor Statistics report. 
In case you are confused by the first paragraph that says 9.6 % of families included an unemployed person, at the same time they say that 80% had at least one employed member - if you look in particular at Tables 1, 2 and 3 you will see the percent of total families with no family members employed is 20% (the same in 2013 as it was in 2012).

That's right one-fifth of the families in the entire country do not have a single member with a job. 
So when someone tries to tell you that the unemployment rate in the United States is under 7 percent - don't believe it. 

There is a reason why government dependence has reached epidemic levels in the United States.  Without enough jobs (as a consequence of decades of globalist neoliberal policies), tens of millions of additional Americans have been forced to reach out to the government for help in order to get by.
At this point, the number of Americans getting money or benefits from the federal government each month exceeds the number of full-time workers in the private sector by more than 60 million.

Denying this problem exists will not make it go away. 

Following the right wing libertarian stance that the government should not provide social services, and the poor should rely on charity will likely rapidly bring on the flash point - because when people feel they have nothing to lose, they can be very dangerous.

3. Tax evasion by the very wealthy is adding to the burden of the Middle Class, who are carrying the load by way of taxes.

Multiple extremely wealthy people and corporations are not just writing off expenses (which is reasonable and fair) - but they are also using loopholes built into law by government to allow them to stash their money in off shore accounts minimizing or totally eliminating the taxes they have to pay; and they are being given huge tax breaks. Literally $trillions have been stashed in off-shore banks. This represents a substantial loss in income tax for the countries where this money was made - money that could be used for government services.

Citizens for Tax Justice did an investigative report looking at the profits of 288 Fortune 500 companies that were consistently profitable between 2008 - 2012, excluding companies that had even one unprofitable year in that period.

Twenty-six of the corporations, including Boeing, General Electric, and Verizon, paid no federal income tax at all over the five year period. 
How can this happen?

One hundred and eleven of the 288 companies (39 percent of them) paid zero or less in federal income taxes in at least one year from 2008 to 2012.

The sectors with the lowest effective corporate tax rates over the five-year period were utilities (2.9 percent), industrial machinery (4.3 percent), telecommunications (9.8 percent), oil, gas and pipelines (14.4 percent), transportation (16.4 percent), aerospace and defense (16.7 percent) and financial (18.8 percent).

The tax breaks claimed by these companies are highly concentrated in the hands of a few very large corporations. Just 25 companies claimed $174 billion in tax breaks over the five years between 2008 and 2012. That’s almost half the $364 billion in tax subsidies claimed by all of the 288 companies in our sample.

Five companies — Wells Fargo, AT&T, IBM, General Electric, and Verizon — enjoyed over $77 billion in tax breaks during this five-year period. 
Three of these are amongst the 25 biggest companies in the world in the 2014 Forbes Global 2000. [General Electric (7th place) Wells Fargo (8th place), AT&T (23rd place)]

No truly substantial efforts have been made to change laws and otherwise rectify this problem, such as insure that income tax is paid in the country where the income is made; and eliminate loopholes that allow tax dodgers to hide money off shore.

This money is out of circulation in the country and is unavailable for potential job creation.

4. The poor are being blamed for their plight and accused of being lazy

In 2013, officially, 11,460,000 civilians who were non-institutionalized fulfilled the (very narrow) criteria of being unemployed (7.4% of the U.S. population).

The official unemployment rate for veterans (I'm not sure how this is defined, but if the same criteria apply as for the general public - this is likely a substantial underestimate) is 9%. It had been 9.9% in 2012. About 12% of the adult homeless population are veterans.

1,775,000 people with a Bachelor's degree or higher (age 25 and over) were reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics as unemployed.

Those who are unemployed with limited savings will soon be poor and the number of people poor enough to need a government benefit already exceeds in number those with a full time job by 60 million people.

One of the arguments made by the far right and some libertarians is that the unemployed are just lazy and living on benefits because they don't want to work. While that might be a factor in some cases, the truth is that there are inadequate numbers of jobs relative to the people who are out of work.

The Federation of American Scientists has provided a link to a Congressional Research Service Report on The Unemployed and Job Openings: A Data Primer.

Have a look at the graph on page 3. This is a graph to show the overall picture of job openings versus the officially recognized numbers of unemployed. 
(There is another graph on page 6 which compares job openings with unemployment rate. This is a mathematical exercise and does not reflect the extent of the problem.) 

Now look at Table 1 on page 10 which separates out numbers of official unemployed versus job openings by the sector or industry. Here is the overview. There are more details in the table.
(Remember the reality is worse than this because the official numbers of unemployed only includes a specifically defined group who are without work):

Number of unemployed: 2,807,800
Number of job openings: 342,000
% of total unemployed persons: 24.1%
Unemployed persons per job opening: 8.2 people versus 1 job opening
(Of note - in construction there are 17 unemployed people for every 1 job opening.) 

Producer services: 
Number of unemployed: 2,234,300
Number of job openings: 933,300
% of total unemployed persons: 19.1
Unemployed persons per job opening: 2.4 people versus 1 job opening

Consumer services: 
Number of unemployed: 5,613,700
Number of job openings: 1,605,300
% of total unemployed persons: 48.1%
Unemployed persons per job opening: 3.5 people versus 1 job opening

Number of unemployed: 1,013,500
Number of job openings: 335,300
% of total unemployed persons: 8.7%
Unemployed persons per job opening: 3.0 people versus 1 job opening

Remember that the number of unemployed versus job openings stats:
1. Only reflect the number of unemployed who meet the narrow definition; and
2. The job opening stats are black and white. 
They do not indicate how many hours of work were associated with the job opening which would give some indication of the levels of underemployment; and
3. The job opening stats do not reflect whether the jobs were temporary or permanent.
4. The job opening stats do not show rate of pay.

It must be remembered that poor people cannot afford to spend money other than on essentials. Poverty consequently can have an additional self-perpetuating effect on the economy.

Blaming and stigmatizing the poor shows not just insensitivity and inhumanity - when this is done by politicians, it reflects a lack of responsibility and accountability for pushing policies and laws that have largely caused and perpetuated problems with the economy that has caused this.

Blaming the poor, who soon will constitute the majority of the population for circumstances created by government, (and by a number of wealthy but greedy corporations and individuals; and the insatiable military-industrial surveillance complex) - is not going to stem the smoldering fire of resentment of those who feel they have been disenfranchised and cheated by the government they have paid over the years - the government that was supposed to represent their interests. 

5. The widening gap between the extremely rich and the poor is causing anger and resentment.

  • The extremely wealthy minority are making their fortunes off the back of the public by: opportunistic use of neoliberal policies; and
  • by the employment of people overseas to increase their profits; and
  • by moving manufacturing offshore to increase their profits; and
  • by stashing money in off-shore accounts to save taxes; and
  • by exploiting the lack of available work to minimize the wages they pay, and worker's benefits they provide for those who are employed; and 
  • by pushing laws to suppress worker's wages and rights; and
  • by pushing for privatization of government run services to increase their profits; and 
  • by charging excessively for services etc.
  • by obscenely high salaries and bonuses for the heads of organizations, businesses and even government.
In 1915, an era in which the Rockefellers and Carnegies dominated American industry, the richest 1% of Americans earned roughly 18% of all income. 
By 2007, the top 1 percent account for 24% of all income. 
In between, their share fell below 10% for three decades. 

In terms of the nation's wealth rather than income, as of 2011 the top 1 percent control 40 percent of the nation's wealth. 

According to PolitiFact and others: 400 Americans have more wealth than half of all Americans combined.

Upward redistribution of income is expected to be responsible for about 43% of the projected Social Security shortfall over the next 75 years. That's not the fault of the unemployed and poor.

Rising income inequality is a smoldering problem that won't be solved by government acting in the interest of the top 400 wealthy elite (or top 0.1-1%); or by taking part in another war; or by buying more exotic military weapons and surveillance tools.

6. Laws have been made to legalize unlimited money being spent by wealthy lobbyists to effectively buy government. 

Government / corporate cronyism - is a clear and on-going threat to democracy and the public interest - not just in the U.S. 

Formerly there was a token effort to limit the effect of big business and other interests on government through laws. But loopholes in laws (which may or may not have been deliberately created), and judgements made by the judiciary (which itself has been accused in some instances of being subject to the corrupt influence of big business and partisan to protecting government interests) has opened the floodgates of big money in politics. 

Now apparently anyone can donate any amount they want to any politician or political party. What was once an insidious vice on the part of big business has now become a blatant system to allow those with big bucks to act as "patrons" for politicians. For this, favors will be expected to be provided in return - likely more pro-corporate laws and policies which are against the public interest. This unfortunately is not new; it's just more blatant. 

The TPPA, TAFTA and TTIP trade pacts; which, based on the limited number of chapters which have been leaked - are clearly written to favor multi-national companies; and will undermine national sovereignty, national regulations which are to protect the public, and national control of a nation's economy etc - is another sign of the phenomenal influence of big business on the U.S. government (and governments in other countries.)

The escalating perverse influence of big money on U.S. government will inevitably result in more pro-corporate laws and policies - and resultant circumstances are likely to increase the hardship experienced by the general public - many of whom already have their backs against the wall.

This is likely to add to the smoldering anger and underlying distrust of government.

7. The government and senior officials in government have repeated lied to the public and have been shown to have deceived the public over major issues. This has created immense distrust. Secrecy and censorship are compounding the distrust.

No one has been punished for lying to or misleading Congress or keeping things secret from Congress. The rot is well set.

Blatant hypocrisy and propaganda is the norm in information presented to the public.

Government secrecy is endemic - adding to the distrust - because anything aboveboard would not need to be kept secret. 

Censorship of the press and government employees are official policies of the current U.S. administration.

As a consequence of these factors, claims by government officials are now greeted with great skepticism.

Trust requires a belief that what is being told is true. The public is no longer as naive as it once was. Government lies, deception and cover-ups are adding to growing distrust.

Distrust does not make for positive or lasting relationships.

8. Unfettered surveillance of the public at home and abroad, along with the deliberate undermining of data security by the U.S. government has added further to profound distrust of the U.S. government, and it's spy agencies at home (as well as abroad).

The U.S. Bill of rights (and the Liberty Clause of the 14th Amendment) have provisions relating to the right of privacy:
Amendment I 
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.   
Amendment III
No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law. 
Amendment IV (the most relevant)
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. 
Amendment IX 
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.  
Liberty Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment 
No State shall... deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law. 
In addition, the U.S. is a signatory to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights which enshrines the right to privacy too:
Article 12. 
No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.  
Yet President Barack Obama (who worked as a civil rights attorney, and actually taught constitutional law) has inexplicably ignored these rights. 

Rights have not just been ignored - U.S. laws have been written (and passed) to legalize unfettered surveillance - and this is the perverse justification for tampering with the security of the internet and digital devices.

There is growing outrage over not just the surveillance, and the undermining of data security which puts everyone at risk - but the sheer autocratic gall of a President and government that would do such things.

9. Militarization of the police, police intimidation and spying domestically

Distrust in government is contributing to substantial resistance to changes in gun laws, despite the multiple incidents of mass violence in the U.S. in recent years.

A well armed group of angry people can quickly lead to flash point. This is no doubt at least partly why these laws are being pushed in a country that has effectively become an authoritarian Police State. 

The rulers of Police States are profoundly afraid of the public
  • Police States use a wide range of tools (especially surveillance, propaganda and censorship) in the interest of repressing and dumbing down the public. 
  • The use of Police to intimidate the public is another characteristic of Police States.
Unfortunately, the friendly, helpful local policeman is becoming a thing of the past in the U.S. 

Rather than the police being primarily focused on protecting the public from actual real villains - the new police think has become an extension of Department of Homeland Security (DHS) paranoid type of think - that effectively views all of the public as potential villains. That has had ramifications in terms of police training, police activity and consequences on the public. 

The U.S. police have become militarized. Heavy US military equipment is being passed along (or sold) to police - which not only adds to the image of intimidation - but also adds to the expense of police services. 

Protective clothing (intimidating, Darth Vadar style); and heavy weapons, are conducive to instilling fear on the part of people who are confronted. The weapons and gear are also likely to get the adrenalin running in police who are being programmed to view all of the public as dangerous. This is a situation where instinctive actions may consequently occur which may result in serious harm.

The natural human instinct for self-preservation is great. When people are afraid they may become like a cornered animal and lash out. This is liable to increase the danger to the person being arrested and/or subject to restraint, as well as to police. This is particularly the case for those under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the mentally ill or those with head injuries or other causes of neuro-behavioural problems. There have been multiple reports of arrest related deaths in relation to victims with these problems - which I suspect, if studied, will not match the rate of deaths of people with drug and alcohol and medical problems involved in arrest related deaths (or "legal intervention") in the past.

Fear is a powerful emotion - whether it is on the part of the person confronted or the police. Fear leads to anger and hate of the threat (whatever that might be) - and can lead to violent reactions.

It is very difficult to find statistics on deaths, let alone injuries, which occurred while the victim was in the process of being arrested, or chased, or when in prison. It is important that this be investigated and analyzed, with comparisons over time (as well as analysis of police injuries and deaths). I suspect that there will be found to be an increase in frequency of arrest related deaths, rather than a decrease. This may be why it is so difficult to find the actual statistics.

There are two different names for these types of deaths: arrest related deaths; and death by legal intervention. What gets counted tends to relate to the name.

The following study indicates that there were 14,528,000 arrests in the U.S. in 1998.
There were 3,233 total deaths from 1988 - 1997 which were attributed to "legal intervention"

The Bureau of Justice Statistics gave a special report on arrest related deaths in the U.S. between 2003-2005. A total of 2,002 arrest related deaths (death by legal intervention) was reported over 47 states (why others were left out is not indicated and may be relevant to the truth). This is broken down claiming 1,095 were homicides by law enforcement officers.
There is more data available on this reporting program at the following link - but it would probably be necessary to obtain this through a request under the FOIA because it is not publicly accessible:

Reminiscent of the East German Stasi - 25 flyers produced by the FBI and the Department of Justice were distributed to businesses in 2012, in a variety of industries, in order to promote suspicious activity reporting in it's "Communities Against Terrorism Program"

Here is a link to the flyers, and a list of 85 common activities that could trigger someone reporting you for suspicious activity. You would not know if you wound up on a suspect list - but the consequences in terms of travel and privacy are potentially substantial; and reports indicate that there is little that can be done to rectify the situation.
*The Stasi has been described as one of the most effective and repressive intelligence and secret police agencies to ever have existed. One of its main tasks was spying on the population, mainly through a vast network of citizens turned informants, and fighting any opposition by overt and covert measures including hidden psychological destruction of dissidents (Zersetzung, literally meaning decomposition). It also worked as an intelligence agency abroad where they were responsible for espionage and conducting covert operations in foreign countries. (Sound familiar?)

USNORTHCOM was established on April 25, 2002 by President George W. Bush.

It is a domestic Unified Combatant Command of the U.S. military tasked with providing military support for civil authorities in the U.S., and protecting the territory and national interests of the United States within the contiguous United States, Alaska, Canada, Mexico (and the air, land and sea approaches to these areas). It is the U.S. military command which, if applicable, would be the primary defender against a mainland invasion of the United States. In 2008, 3rd Infantry Division (United States)’s 1st Brigade Combat Team was assigned to U.S. Northern Command.

USNORTHCOM operates extensive domestic intelligence operations which both share and receive information from local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. Employees of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and other agencies maintain offices at NORTHCOM and receive daily intelligence briefings.

Northern Command has completed several joint training exercises with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

It makes sense for any country to be militarily prepared (within reason) to defend itself. 

It is the extent of preparation that is alarming.

An Army Military Police training manual for “Civil Disturbance Operations” outlines how military assets are to be used domestically to quell riots, confiscate firearms and even kill Americans on U.S. soil during mass civil unrest.
The document (PDF), which is dated 2006 and was used for a self-learning course at the U.S. Army Military Police School at Fort McClellan, makes it clear that the operations described in the manual apply to both “CONUS and OCONUS,” meaning inside the Continental United States and outside the Continental United States.
The document outlines how military assets will be used to “help local and state authorities to restore and maintain law and order” in the event of mass riots, civil unrest or a declaration of martial law.
The primary function of military assets will be focused around, “breaking up unauthorized gatherings and by patrolling the disturbance area to prevent the commission of lawless acts,” states the document, adding, “during operations to restore order, military forces may present a show of force, establish roadblocks, break up crowds, employ crowd control agents, patrol, serve as security forces or reserves, and perform other operations as required.”
The manual also describes how prisoners will be processed through temporary internment camps under the guidance of U.S. Army FM 3-19.40 Internment/Resettlement Operations, outlines how internees would be “re-educated” into developing an “appreciation of U.S. policies” while detained in prison camps inside the United States.
A recent report produced by the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Institute warns that the United States may experience massive civil unrest in the wake of a series of crises which it has termed “strategic shock.”
The report, titled Known Unknowns: Unconventional Strategic Shocks in Defense Strategy Development, also suggests that the military may have to be used to quell domestic disorder.
“Widespread civil violence inside the United States would force the defense establishment to reorient priorities in extremis to defend basic domestic order and human security,” the report, authored by [Ret.] Lt. Col. Nathan Freir, reads.
“Deliberate employment of weapons of mass destruction or other catastrophic capabilities, unforeseen economic collapse, loss of functioning political and legal order, purposeful domestic resistance or insurgency, pervasive public health emergencies, and catastrophic natural and human disasters are all paths to disruptive domestic shock.” it continues.
This reflects a government that is afraid of it's own people - a cardinal sign of a Police State. This does not bode well for the freedom of Americans.

10. The Prison Industrial Complex

According to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS): in 2012 - 6,937,600 offenders - i.e.  about 1 in every 35 adults in the United States (2.9% of adult residents), was on probation or parole or incarcerated in prison or jail. 1 in every 108 (just under 1%) of American adults was incarcerated in prison or jail. (These statistics do not include juveniles or prisoners in military or CIA prisons).

According to the US Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) blacks (of all races) and hispanics are disproportionately high in these stats relative to the overall population of blacks and hispanics in the overall U.S. population.

The American Civil Liberties Union published a report in 2012 which asserts that the elderly prison population had climbed 1300% since the 1980s, with 125,000 inmates aged 55 or older incarcerated.

The U.S. has the largest incarceration rate in the world: 716/100,000 population. 
The closest large country is Russia (ranked 8th) where the incarceration rate is 484/100,000.
Just to compare with the other Echelon Five Eyes spy net countries:
  • New Zealand (rank 74) - 193/100,000
  • England and Wales (rank 101) 148/100,000
  • Australia (rank 112) 130/100,000
  • Canada (rank 130) 118/100,000
(The data for the comparative incarceration list was last retrieved from the International Center for Prison Studies 9 June 2013)

There are unlikely to be so many more criminal minded people in the U.S. compared with the rest of the world. The high rate of incarceration likely reflects punitive laws, and a low threshold for imprisonment and lengthy sentences; versus public service, or rehabilitation for relatively minor misdemeanors in other places. This is compounded by the privatization of prisons - and the use of prisoners for cheap labor in the U.S.

The Prison Industry Complex is one of the fastest-growing industries in the United States - and its investors are on Wall Street.

Prison labor has its roots in slavery. After the 1861-1865 Civil War, a system of “hiring out prisoners” was introduced in order to continue the slavery tradition. Freed slaves were charged with not carrying out their sharecropping commitments (cultivating someone else’s land in exchange for part of the harvest) or petty thievery – which were almost never proven – and were then “hired out” for cotton picking, working in mines and building railroads.

 The private contracting of prisoners for work fosters incentives to lock people up. Prisons depend on this income. Corporate stockholders who make money off prisoners’ work, lobby for longer sentences, in order to expand their workforce.

Who is investing in the Prison Industrial Complex? 

At least 37 states have legalized the contracting of prison labor by private corporations that mount their operations inside state prisons. 

The list of such companies who have utilized prison labor over the years includes such big names as: IBM, Boeing, Motorola, Microsoft, AT&T, Wireless, Texas Instrument, Dell, Compaq, Honeywell, Hewlett-Packard, Lucent Technologies, 3Com, Intel, Northern Telecom, TWA, Nordstrom’s, Revlon, Macy’s, Pierre Cardin, Target Stores, and many more. 

Between 1980 and 1994, profits in the Prison Industry went up from $392 million to $1.31 billion. 

  • Inmates in state penitentiaries generally receive the minimum wage for their work, but not al. In Colorado, they get about $2 per hour, well under the minimum wage. 
  • And in privately-run prisons, they receive as little as 17 cents per hour for a maximum of six hours a day, the equivalent of $20 per month. 
  • The highest-paying private prison is CCA in Tennessee, where prisoners receive 50 cents per hour for what they call “highly skilled positions.” 
Thanks to prison labor, the United States is once again an attractive location for investment in work that was designed for Third World labor markets. A company that operated a maquiladora (assembly plant in Mexico near the border) closed down its operations there and relocated to San Quentin State Prison in California. In Texas, a factory fired its 150 workers and contracted the services of prisoner-workers from the private Lockhart Texas prison, where circuit boards are assembled for companies like IBM and Compaq.

The influence of the for-profit prison industry on the government has been described as the Prison Industrial complex.

The two main private prison corporations - Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and The GEO Group (formerly Wackenhut Corrections Corporation) have been members of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)

ALEC is a Washington, D.C. based organization that develops legislation that advances neoliberal (so called free-market) principles such as privatization. 

Under their Criminal Justice Task Force, ALEC developed model bills which State legislators use to propose “tough on crime” initiatives including “Truth in Sentencing” and “Three Strikes” laws. 

By funding and participating in ALEC’s Criminal Justice Task Forces, critics argue, private prison companies influence legislation for tougher, longer sentences. 

Writing in Governing magazine in 2003, Alan Greenblatt states:

ALEC has been a major force behind both privatizing state prison space and keeping prisons filled. It put forward bills providing for mandatory minimum sentences and three-strikes sentencing requirements. About 40 states passed versions of ALEC's Truth in Sentencing model bill, which requires prisoners convicted of violent crimes to serve most of their sentences without chance of parole.”

According to a 2010 report by National Public Radio, ALEC arranged meetings between the Corrections Corporation of America and Arizona’s state legislators such as Russell Pearce at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. to write Arizona SB 1070, which would keep CCA's immigrant detention centers stuffed with detainees.

CCA and GEO have both engaged in state initiatives to increase sentences for offenders and to create new crimes, including: 
  • CCA helping to finance Proposition 6 in California in 2008 and 
  • GEO lobbying for Jessica's Law in Kansas in 2006. 

In 2012, The CCA sent a letter to 48 states offering to buy public prisons in exchange for a promise to keep the prisons at 90% occupancy for 20 years. 

States that sign such contracts with prison companies must reimburse them for beds that go unused. 
In 2011, Arizona agreed to pay Management & Training Corporation $3 million for empty beds when a 97 percent quota agreement wasn't met.

In the Kids for cash scandal, Mid-Atlantic Youth Services Corp, a private prison company which runs juvenile facilities, was found guilty of paying two judges, Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan, $2.8m to send 2000 children to their prisons for such crimes as trespassing in vacant buildings and stealing DVDs from Wal-Mart.

Extracts above are from:

Given that 2.9% of the U.S. population is either jailed, imprisoned, paroled or on probation - and the prison industrial complex is using political influence to shore up profits - this is likely to be yet another point of conflict between the government supported tiny percentage of the rich and powerful corporate elite, versus the great majority of have nots.  

11. Biometric surveillance - another assault on human rights and freedom

Biometric surveillance is any technology that measures and analyzes human physical and/or behavioral characteristics for authentication, identification, or screening purposes. Examples of physical characteristics include fingerprints, DNA, and facial patterns. Examples of mostly behavioral characteristics include gait (a person's manner of walking) or voice.

Facial recognition is the use of the unique configuration of a person's facial features to accurately identify them, usually from surveillance video. Both the Department of Homeland Security and DARPA are heavily funding research into facial recognition systems. The Information Processing Technology Office, ran a program known as Human Identification at a Distance which developed technologies that are capable of identifying a person at up to 500 ft by their facial features.

The Los Angeles Police Department is installing automated facial recognition and license plate recognition devices in its squad cars, and providing handheld face scanners, which officers will use to identify people while on patrol.

Edward Snowden revealed, that from 2008 to 2010, the National Security Agency (NSA) collaborated with the British Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) to intercept the webcam footage of over 1.8 million Yahoo users.

The agencies analyzed images they downloaded from webcams of unsuspecting members of the public; scanning them allegedly to look for known terrorists who might be using the service to communicate - matching faces from the footage to suspects with the help of a new technology called face recognition.

During this intrusive exercise when allegedly attempting to find faces of terrorists - the Pentagon's Optic Nerve program recorded webcam sex by its unknowing targets.
Up to 11 percent of the material the program collected was "undesirable nudity". And that's just the beginning of what face recognition technology might mean for us in the digital era.

Over the past decade, face recognition has become a fast-growing commercial industry, moving from its governmental origins - programs like Optic Nerve - into everyday life. The technology is being pitched as an effective tool for securely confirming identities, with the financial backing of a new Washington lobbying firm, the Secure Identity & Biometrics Association (SIBA). By licensing their technology to everyone from military defense contractors to Internet start-ups, companies like Cognitec and Animetrics are churning a global biometrics industry that will grow to $20 billion by 2020.

To some, face recognition sounds benign, maybe even convenient. 

But the technology has a dark side. The U.S. government is in the process of building the world's largest cache of face recognition data, with the goal of identifying every person in the country. The creation of such a database would mean that anyone could be tracked wherever his or her face appears, whether it's on a city street or in a mall. Today's laws don't protect Americans from having their webcams scanned for facial data.

Another Orwellian use of biometrics is in development. Facial thermographs would allegedly allow machines to identify certain emotions in people such as fear or stress, by measuring the temperature generated by blood flow to different parts of their face. Law enforcement officers believe that this has potential for them to identify when a suspect is nervous, which might indicate that they are hiding something, lying, or worried about something.

A more recent development is DNA fingerprinting, which looks at some of the major markers in the body's DNA to produce a match. 

There have been reports that the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) has been collaborating with law enforcement agencies around the nation to collect "voluntary" blood and saliva samples from drivers. This collection is part of a NHTSA "survey" which is allegedly looking to determine how often drivers drive while possibly impaired by drugs or alcohol.

President's Executive Order - HIV Continuum Initiative states: 

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force now recommends that beginning in 2014clinicians screen all individuals ages 15 to 65 years for HIV. This means the blood details and DNA will be available on file of those who are tested.

The FBI is spending $1 billion to build a new biometric database, which will store DNA, facial recognition data, iris/retina (eye) data, fingerprints, palm prints, and other biometric data of people living in the United States. The computers running the database are contained in an underground facility about the size of two American football fields.

All forms of surveillance, but particularly biometric surveillance has profound implications for privacy - namely, that there won't be any.

Pervasive, invasive surveillance is incompatible with privacy or freedom. 

In a country that has until recent years been the model for freedom - the clear devolution to an Orwellian Police State is not likely to sit well with Americans. 

Have Americans been successfully brainwashed and cowed by Big Brother to accept this without complaint? I don't think so.

12. Discrimination

Racism and ethnic discrimination in the United States has been a major issue since the colonial era and the slave era. When it was legally sanctioned - racism sanctioned privileges and rights for White Americans, not granted to Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, and Latin Americans. 

Despite the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act - racial discrimination remains a major phenomenon in the U.S. 

Racism continues to be reflected in socioeconomic inequality, and racial stratification continues to occur in employment, housing, education, lending, and government.

In the view of the U.S. Human Rights Network, a network of scores of US civil rights and human rights organizations, "Discrimination permeates all aspects of life in the United States, and extends to all communities of color".

Racial Profiling is the use of an individual’s race or ethnicity by law enforcement personnel as a key factor in deciding whether to engage in enforcement (e.g. make a traffic stop or arrest). 

The existence of racial profiling dates back to slavery. In 1693, Philadelphia’s court officials gave police legal authority to stop and detain any Negro (freed or slaved) seen wandering around on the streets. This discriminatory practice continued through the Jim Crow era and now in the twenty-first century, racial profiling is prevalent across cities in the U.S.

Statistical data demonstrates, that although policing practices and policies vary widely across the United States, a large disparity between racial groups in regards to traffic stops and searches. 

American Civil Liberties Union, which has conducted studies in various major U.S. cities concluded that: “Blacks were between three and five times more likely to 
(a) be asked if they were carrying drugs or weapons, 
(b) be asked to leave the vehicle, 
(c) be searched, 
(d) have a passenger searched, and 
(e) have the vehicle physically searched in a study conducted. 
This conclusion was based on the analysis of 313, randomly selected, traffic stop police tapes gathered from 2003 to 2004.

But, here's the rub. According to 2012 census projections:
White people will no longer make up a majority of Americans by 2043. 

The non-Hispanic white population, at 197.8 million in 2012, is projected to peak at 200 million in 2024, before entering a steady decline in absolute numbers as the massive baby boomer generation enters its golden years. Four years after that, racial and ethnic minorities are predicted to become a majority among adults 18-29.

How can non-white racism persist in the face of these demographics? 
Ask South Africa. 

In the next couple of decades, is there anything to stop conservative white political leaders in the U.S. from acting in the interest of their predominantly white corporate patrons - such as by choosing to introduce apartheid type policies to insure a white minority rule in the U.S.?

Hopefully this is unlikely; but, based on the recent U.S. administrations there is no guarantee - because the U.S. has been rapidly going backwards with regard to human rights, and anything is possible with respect to the efforts of the political elite and their cronies to retain control. 

Discrimination on the basis of race is not the only divisive form of discrimination in the US. Discrimination based on sex and sexual orientation is also prevalent.

The population is getting older and people are living longer - with disabilities and illnesses. The profit driven powers behind the throne consider the unemployed and infirm or otherwise vulnerable public an unwanted burden. Why provide affordable health care so the rabble will live longer?

Discrimination in the U.S. is unlikely to be limited to race, sex or sexual orientation. It is highly probable that discriminatory practices based on age and health will grow.

13. An addiction to war

It has become clearer to the public that U.S. participation in wars has not been for a common good - but to satisfy the ambitions of a power elite; and in the interests of powerful corporations who want access to natural resources so they can make a profit from it.

Wikipedia notes the following U.S. military casualties of war: (Note: This does not include the estimated 162,000 civilians who have been determined to have died a violent death up to March 2014 - just from the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.)

In the Afghanistan war
Killed - 1,742
Wounded - 20,904

In the Iraq war

Killed - 3,527
Wounded - 36,710

Excluding war costs, the March 2014 U.S. military budget contains $549 billion for military programs, a more than 5 percent increase relative to 2014.  That includes $28 billion for the “Opportunity, Growth, and Security Initiative.” The president said this fund would allow the Pentagon to “accelerate the schedules for developing and buying new or upgraded systems.”

In 2013, the U.S. spent $640 billion on military spending. (36.6% of the total amount on military spending in the world - despite no country being directly at war with the U.S.) 

By comparison (for 2013):
US - $640 billion
People's Republic of China - $188 billion
Russia - $87.8 billion
Saudi Arabia - $67 billion
France - $61.2 billion
United Kingdom $57.9 billion

Here are the stats for the top 15 military spenders in 2013. You will see that none of these are directly at war with any other country.

To date, the economic costs of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan to the U.S. is estimated to have been in the order of $3.1 trillion dollars and counting. This is money spent fighting other country's wars.

When vast amounts of money are spent on the military-industrial surveillance complex - it is inevitable that there will be a desire to use it.

The U.S. public have been financing wars that are not to their benefit. It has added and is adding enormously to the U.S. national debt - with nothing positive to show for it - but a lot of deaths, destruction and debt. The money would be better spent on improving infrastructure. 

If the U.S. administration persists in dabbling in the war in Syria, and the unrest in the Ukraine, this is likely to add to the political unrest within the U.S. - not to mention the burgeoning U.S. debt.

In Summary:

  • The evidence indicates the the U.S. administration is no longer functioning as a democracy; but is functioning autonomously from the public - heavily influenced by a powerful corporate, financial and military-industrial-surveillance complex elite.
  • Propaganda, censorship and secrecy are being used to dumb down the public to reduce objections to the actions of the authoritarian state. But the situation is so bad - that this is not working.
  • Privacy is in the process of being completely eliminated. Privacy is very closely related to freedom - a principle most Americans feel very strongly about.
  • There is evidence of devolution of U.S. governance to the equivalent of an authoritarian Surveillance Police State including: 
i. Highly intrusive widespread unfettered surveillance; and, 
ii. Propaganda; and, 
iii. Censorship; and, 
iv. Intimidating militarization of the police; and,  
v. Stasi or House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) - like programs to encourage the public to inform on one another; and,  
vi. Both police and domestic military are being indoctrinated and equipped to view the public as dangerous. 
vii. Laws are being changed to legitimize unconstitutional acts and acts that violate the Bill of Rights and other human rights laws.
  • Increasing unemployment and decreasing job availability is resulting in growing numbers of unemployed and poor. A relatively large percentage of the population has had interaction with a profit driven prison system. In a couple of decades whites will be a minority in the U.S. 
  • The people who really control the U.S. government are primarily rich and white - and will not readily give up their power or opportunities for profit

The U.S. is close to flash point.

  • In the interest of peace, prosperity and freedom - there is an urgent need for an end to the neoliberal and trilateral policies that have likely created this dangerous situation.
  • There is a need for laws to remove the corrupting influence of money from politics. 
  • Unfettered surveillance without a warrant must end; and government and intelligence agencies must be focused on protecting the public - not preying on them.
  • The U.S. government should get out of other people's wars - and focus instead on improving infrastructure at home as well as policies that will result in job creation and industry creation domestically.
  • Political whipping needs to end - so politicians are not forced to vote against the public interests because their leaders (who currently appear to be corporate puppets) tell them to do so.
  • Politicians should start acting in the interest of the People - not Profiteers.