Back in the cold war era of commie Russia

shades of black and white

shades of black and white

For the youngsters out there who were born after the Berlin Wall fell and the USSR fell apart — here is a story about what us older folks were told about “Red Russia”.

The USSR and satellite  commie countries spied on everyone — on every block there was someone taking notes about everyone and these notes were entered into files kept in the KGB headquarters. All phone calls were recorded and most likely there were microphones in all homes and state offices. Whereas in America, we were told, this sort of spying never happens.

Tell that to the people that J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI agents spied on, like Ernest Hemingway.  Tell that to the thousands of people spied on by Hoover on orders of Prez Nixon. I went to grad school with one of the victims of Nixon’s bugging efforts. Most people figured out what was happening and they changed their behavior — sex was for shower time — with loud music and the noise of the shower to give privacy. That was what my classmate told me when I learn that even her and her husband’s bedroom was bugged.

We know that there is the claim that the USG spies can remotely turn on cell phone to be used as a tracking device or a listening device. Which means perhaps that cell phone batteries need to be removed?

Here’s a snark from one of the participants in a discussion on FireDogLake — which sums up the old and the new spy masters.

“which he [John Schindler] claimed as being in league with Russian intelligence”.

Oh NO! Not the friggin Rooskies! Those guys even spy on their own citizens and keep track of their every communication and classify them as being dissidents for their opinions and stuff. Plus, their heads of state are in the back pockets of oil oligarchs. Everything is a fucking state secret over there. And don’t get me started on the legal system: punishment before trial, no habeus corpus, the judges being bought and paid for, putting people in solitary…etc etc. /s

Former NSA Official John Schindler Labels Glenn Greenwald ‘Glenda’ In Homophobic and Transphobic Smear

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Update: Re David Miranda’s arrest by the UK fuzz squad and what it means to all of us. David Miranda and the preclusion of privacy:

The National Surveillance State doesn’t want anyone to be able to communicate without the authorities being able to monitor that communication.  Think that’s too strong a statement?  If so, you’re not paying attention.  There’s a reason the government names its programs Total Information Awareness and Boundless Informant and acknowledges it wants to “collect it all” and build its own “haystack” and has redefined the word “relevant” to mean “everything.”  The desire to spy on everything totally and boundlessly isn’t even new; what’s changed is just that it’s become more feasible of late.  You can argue that the NSA’s nomenclature isn’t (at least not yet) properly descriptive; you can’t argue that it isn’t at least aspirational.

The United Soviet States of America — taking over from where the USSR left off.

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