The blog is back and live.
The time since my last post did not go uneventful. On the contrary, there are several worrisome topics that caught the public attention. Among the recent ones - the surveillance scandal (Hello, to whoever is reading my personal correspondence), the protests in Turkey, and a more local event - the two waves of anti-government protests. During this several months, some other worrisome topics lost their public interest, but they shouldn't have.
On "the gun control debates
For example, the debate on gun control is not so interesting anymore. In Bulgaria we have a saying that roughly translates as: "every fuss lasts three days" (it sounds much better in Bulgarian, though). What has left from the gun control issue is a few provocateurs. Namely, all those gun owners who have committed to posting YouTube videos on how they defend their freedom by exercising their open-carry rights. Nothing says "I am free to do whatever I want because my country has a constitution", than walking around malls with a M16 strapped over the shoulder. And then the well-known scenario reveals - ordinary citizens, fearful for their safety, do the civilized thing - turn to the authorities (in this case the police). And when the policemen try to do their job, they are vigorously resisted by the proud open-carry gun owners. And then the other well-known scenario unveils: simple questions like "What's your name and why are you wielding guns in a public area" get pointless repetitive answer: "Because I can" or "Am I under arrest?". WTF? A cop asking you to identify yourself doesn't mean he is going to arrest you. I simply do not get it. One must be very bored to go out on the street with the sole intention of getting into arguments with the police force. Do not get me wrong, as I have stated before, I am not against guns. But if you want to carry, you do not need to brag about it, let alone get passive-aggressive because somebody asked you why do you need to go hiking with an assault gun* If gun owners want a safe society, gearing up like Rambo will certainly not provide safety. It provides confusion, fear, paranoia and all kinds of negative emotions that could be spared.**
*I saw a video of a man going to the nearby hills! (it wasn't even in the mountains) with his son. The man was carrying an assault rifle, supposedly for defense should they need such. Against what? Bears, raccoons, skunks?
On the surveillance
Speaking of freedoms...How to begin? The recent revelations from Edward Snowden earned extreme popularity all over the world so there is no need to recap on the recent events. The surveillance scandal brought a very interesting paradox. The paradox is that proposals to control gun ownership were met with colossal opposition - people were talking about freedom, democracy, Second Amendment, etc. However, the surveillance programs, which violate freedom severely, so far, pass by with not so much fuss. What's more disturbing is that Americans seem to be angry mainly because of the secrecy not so much because of the existence of such practice. The surveillance that the American government exercises violates at least two Amendments - the 4th and the 10th. People cannot be searched or/and have their property seized without a reason (4th Amendment) and the American government does not have the right to be a "world police" (the American Constitution does not and cannot delegate to the USA the task of being a "world police", therefore, by surveilling foreigners the US government gave itself powers that are not enlisted in the Constitution, thus violating the 10th Amendment). It seems that the American society is more keen on keeping its Second Amendment than keeping its private life. This is very, very disturbing. What is even more disturbing is the reaction of the government officials. They are trying to downgrade the situation by "calming" the Americans that the main target of the surveillance programs were foreigners not living in the US. In other words, if you are not Americans you are a second class citizen. Why? Well, because it seems that all non-Americans posses a threat to the "national security". How can one society be so militarized and paranoid? And how can people be fine with that? How can people be fine with such intrusion of personal space? As I have stated in a previous post, the government should serve, it should not oppress. But the US has its PATRIOT act, right? It can do whatever it wants because...well, because it can. State sovereignty doesn't mean anything. Except! when it comes to the US. Try to imagine what the outcome will be if a non-US intelligence agency was surveilling US citizens, no matter where they reside. On the bright side the US is on its way of enforcing its twisted beliefs over the whole world. Nobody dared to raise a voice at yesterday's G8 meeting. I mean to really raise a voice. Nobody dared to raise a voice about the 2009 G20 meeting, monitored by the British agencies. But it is irrelevant, what is relevant is that the US is kept safe from the dangerous 6,7 billion non-Americans.
On the Boston bombings
It seems that the PRISM program was not so efficient in preventing the Boston bombings. If it so justified to illegally surveill people, why did not the agencies prevent the bombings? Why didn't the agencies prevent the Sandy Hook shooting? Why the agencies did not prevent the Aurora shooting? The list can go on. If the PRISM project really intercepted suspicious behavior, why did it fail in the mentioned tragedies? Attacks like these take some level of preparation. And in the era of the Internet this preparation must have taken place online. It is very doubtful that the Boston bombers learned how to make bombs in the library. It is also very doubtful that the shooters at Sandy Hook and Aurora did not leave any signs online - chats, emails, website visits can all be a valuable tip. Why were these tips missed? Because the US wasn't concerned for attacks carried out by Americans, as government officials said? Adam Lanza was American, James Holmes is American, the Tzarnaev brothers grew up in the US, the Unabomber is American, and so on, and so on. So, maybe the US government should watch more closely its own?
This is it for now. Soon I will post Part 2 of Vol. 2 which will cover the protests in Bulgaria and Turkey.