The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Government spying in a “democracy”

Sep 10, 2007

Congress has passed a law allowing government spying on all phone calls and e-mails starting in the U.S. and going out of the country, all without any court order. Undoubtedly calls within the U.S. will be picked up too.

Many people think this has nothing to do with them since they aren’t terrorists. Wrong!

Just look at how the government used such authorization to disrupt social movements in the past. When workers carried out sit-in strikes and massive picketing to build unions in the 1930’s, government finks were right there, carrying out provocations to get people arrested or killed. During the McCarthy period, when the companies fired the militants who built the unions, the FBI supplied the names to the employers. The government spied on the black movements of the 1950’s and 1960’s, often turning the names of activists over to the KKK. Those who opposed the war in Viet Nam were harassed by government agents, just as government today harasses those who oppose the war in Iraq.

When Congress passed the current authorized for unchecked spying, many politicians said it was only temporary. No, the only time when government repression was eased was when massive social movements pushed the government back.