"The most common characteristic of all police states is intimidation by surveillance. Citizens know they are being watched and overheard. Their mail is being examined. Their homes can be invaded."
by:
Vance Packard
(1914-1996) American journalist, social critic, and author
Source:
The People Shapers, 1977
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Reader comments about this quote:
I don't know if it is the most common, but it does loom ominous here.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    A seminal quote, eh? And the good folks say "If you're not doing anything wrong, you don't have anything to worry about." ...untill you can't have a "dangerous thought" of your own!
     -- Senor Reek, Heartland, USA     
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     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US      
    We the People have not authorized our government to surveil every person and movement, but via the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, they have turned us all into 'employees' bound to the reams and reams of commercial law intended to govern inter-state commerce and incorporated entities. A perversion of law in one instance begets another and another until the whole system is but an arbitrary code of governance for funnelling the fruits of the labors of the People into the pockets of lawyers and politicians. It is a crime against the People -- and they keep an eye out for any dissenters and apply pressure when 'necessary'.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Government agents don't care about the Fourth Amendment.
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
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    But why would such a person, who is presumably well educated and focused on the issue of discussion, fail to mention the commonality of physical torture, imposed hunger, restriction of movement, physical slavery, and the more invasive and evil actions of the worst police states, which control 2 billion people today.
     -- David L. Rosenthal     
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    Because, David, the US now imprisons more people per capita than any other nation on Earth -- and the majority of the so-called crimes are non-violent and political in nature. And the trend is not slowing. As far as torture is concerned, it is implemented throughout the world behind closed bars. It can happen here -- it is happening here. Take a stand against an unjust law, get imprisoned, and see for yourself.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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     -- Pat, San Jose      
    More true today than ever before! An episode of The Outer Limits TV show "O.B.I.T." makes this very same point.
     -- karl anglin, northridge     
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    And you thought all those cameras at the intersections were for traffic control...Nope! They're Federal.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    England is a great example, they have thousands of cameras almost everywhere. and they are circling the drain now.
     -- jim k, Austin, Tx     
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    The Police should be 'in charge' of only 'material thefts'..and traffic violations and should have the authority to 'cognize' any other political or social affence and hand the suspects over to a more judicious/juridical authority. If this is clearly stated - then the sp termed dubious or nebulous 'surveillence' can be done away with.
     -- Vedapushpa, Bangalore - India     
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    "The Patriot Act" formed out of greed and stupidity.

    Congress fiddles while Obama & Co. burns our money.

    Semper Fi.

    b

    PS. 'Big Brother' is watching you.
     -- Bruski, Naples     
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    PPS. If you are not worried, read "Stealing America".
     -- Bruski, Naples     
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    All Experiments intentional, ARE WATCHED ! as our Republic under Siege for the past 150 years. but more to point individual sovereigns, ( those that Know it, Ginosko, ) A broad net, slowly drawn in over time reveals, the " good and contrary ". " to science out " a matter. At first, long ago in my life, to become Aware. Then to learn the " nuts and bolts " of the issue at hand ! What better way to track the unknown, with an ever narrowing scope. It is Very comforting to know, that with all the, being observed, that grace, unmerited favor, has a way of being observed Also. friends in High places. as where things are hid. Knowing we are fulfilling our intended purpose, is of great reward. Worried, no, dealing with adversity, one day at a time. Policing in an instinct, when needed. Some would make a growing business when there is no need. Unconstitutional Overreach. Extortion, Plunder, Robbery !!!
     -- Ronw13, Yachats OR     
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