All that Big Brother talk has '1984' sales spiking
The George Orwell classic has climbed by more than 3,000% on Amazon since the leak about US government surveillance programs.
George Orwell's 64-year-old novel "1984" is getting a huge bump in sales after a leak exposed wide-ranging government surveillance efforts last week.
The classic tale portrays a dystopian future in which the government -- Big Brother -- monitors its citizens via the Thought Police, which "could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to."
As Orwell wrote, "Asleep or awake, working or eating, indoors or out of doors, in the bath or in bed -- no escape. Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimeters inside your skull."
Sound familiar? Apparently it does to many Amazon.com (AMZN) customers, who've bought so many copies of "1984" that it now ranks 194th among all the books it sells. That's a jump of more than 3,300% during the past 24 hours, according to the site.
Many people are alarmed over news that the National Security Agency has been monitoring data not only from Verizon Communications (VZ) but also from online giants such as Google (GOOG) and Yahoo (YHOO), as MSN Money reported last week.
With all the disclosures -- courtesy of former Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH) employee Edward Snowden -- Americans might not be blamed for turning to "1984," although it's unlikely they'll find any solace there. Its main character, Winston Smith, ends up broken and devoted to the totalitarian government.
Orwell would have been alarmed by the kind of spying disclosed through Snowden's leaks, National Public Radio reports. "Throwing out such a broad net of surveillance is exactly the kind of threat Orwell feared," Michael Shelden, the author of "Orwell: The Authorized Biography," said.
Even though many people consider Orwell's vision paranoid, it turned out that the British spy agency MI5 had tracked the writer from 1929 until he died in 1950.
President Barack Obama on Friday defended the NSA program, saying he believes the government had "struck the right balance." But pointing to the threat of war or terrorism as a justification for spying concerned Orwell.
"He could see that war and defeating an enemy could be used as a reason for increasing political surveillance," Shelden said. "You were fighting a never-ending war that gave you a never-ending excuse for looking into people's lives." That sounds as much like today's real world as the fictional one Orwell was conjuring in 1949.
Follow Aimee Picchi on Twitter at @aimeepicchi.
"President Barack Obama on Friday defended the NSA program"
What did anyone expect him to say?........ "Sorry for infringing on your rights"
Spoken like the true Statist that he really is. The military industrial complex rolling like the Ministry of Peace in 1984. Always waging war or fabricating reasons why to engage in war or occupy countries for the sake of Democracy(yeah, right). He is nothing more than GWB squared, even worse.There is no right balance. There never will be. This is 'newspeak' because there will be infinite reasons why they need to keep the program running as time lapses. They will find reasons why to either keep or expand the program. This very Orwellian, in an essence this gov't program is the 'Thought Police' in it's infancy. There is a reason why our founding fathers built the bill of rights into the fabric of our Constitution, to keep things like this from happening.
”People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.”
Key points: Bush signed a Executive Order to allow warrant-less snooping years ago. Both Parties continued to sign off on warrant-less snooping year after year so I don't want to hear anyone of them claim they didn't read the stinking Bills. This makes two major policy issues Obama has reversed course on, letting all the Bush Tax Cuts Expire and his stance on Snooping. Obama can't be trusted no more than we could trust Bush. In fact, no President nor Congress can be trusted with such warrant-less powers.
Nothing new, remember the movie, "Enemy of the State"?
Recent presidents been using the FBI, IRS or other government agencies against whoever/whatever they perceive as an opponent/enemy.
As for all those who are OK with this, Ben Franklin had it right way back when :
"Those who give up freedom for security deserve neither."
Let`s not forget the Patroitic took away a lot of our rights.Big brother has been watching
for a long time.
Has the Lame Brain Media stopped sucking at the A-hole of this administration???? Are they going to start being Investigating Journalists again or still just be some college brain washed Idiots sucking at the Demo/repub $hit Bucket that POL-LIE-TITIONS feed them and believe that Big Government is the best government. Unchecked by the press any government will become corrupt and want power and longevity to stay in power. If you don't believe that look at the last election for President, Money spent billions.
If you give up your freedom for a governments promise of free stuff, and utopia than you deserve what you get. The government says that 11 million Illegal's should be granted amnesty>
Why? they have broken our laws. If i break the law I go to jail, if I go to Mexico Illegally they will put me in jail because I broke their law. OUR GOVERNMENT HAS SLOWLY GAVE AWAY THIS COUNTRY, AND FOR WHAT???? YOUR VOTE, THEIR VOTE AND TO STAY IN CONTROL AND POWER, THAT'S WHY.
Many have cheered as big brother has gained strength. He knows what is good for us and can gauge our importance in relation to the common good. He knows better than we what we should do and when we should do it. There's a monster on the loose, he's got our heads into the noose and he just sits there watching...
"The art of leadership...consists in consolidating the attention of the people against a single adversary and taking care that nothing will split up that attention."
When I was young there was a story of a horse that wanted to get rid of other horse because it will eat in same pasture and compete for sex. Man offered to help. Long story short, horse ended up being slave to a man with no freedom at all except man grants him.
We fear so much that we end up being slave and deprived of all our privacy. We gave up all the privacy for those factors that has least probability of harming us, terrorism. Neighborhood crooks may be 10,000 more likely to kill or hurt or rob you than any so called terrorist.
We are slave by our own fears.
About 10 years ago, I took a city bus tour of London and we passed by the old home of George Orwell. The tour guide said that within a 1 mile radius of old George's home, there were about 250 CCTV cameras. At the time, London was the most surveilled city in the world.
I waiting until l got home before posting this. They track us at work.
- Winston Smith
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