Cline’s First Law and Snowden

They’re spying on you right now you know
Listening to me saying this to you.
Hello NSA! Hello GCHQ!
Can you tell Cameron he’s a twat for me please? Thanks.

The news lately has been reminding me of Celine’s first law.

Celine is a fictional character in The Illuminatus Trilogy, and his first law states “National Security is the chief cause of national insecurity

Once you have a network of spies, they are a massive target for other spies to spread disinformation to. The more you chase up your spying systems, the more false information they have.

And yet, several years ago, the government started spying on us. All of us. Every bit of data they can pull of the wires. Everyone’s Facebook pages, the whole social graph, every email, phone call, there’s nothing they won’t try and capture. “Get it all” is even their actual quotes.

And of course, being this size, the program is run mostly by contractors and sooner or later one of the contractors leaks what they know.

Thanks Eddie Snowden!

The newspapers print part of what the governments and their corps are doing, and the government and the corps reply with weasel words, and the newspaper then prints more stuff which shows that the government was STILL lying. And so it goes. Around and around. The newspapers print stuff, the government denies stuff, the newspapers print more stuff showing the government is lying.

The government, it seems, don’t even know what documents Snowden has got. They keep putting their foot in it.

They say Snowden is endangering the national interest. “How?” asks everyone. “Um. We don’t know, he just is” they reply.

They take some action: Detaining Snowden’s Journo’s Boyfriend for nine hours and stealing his data. They smash up copies of the documents in the Guardian offices despite knowing full well there’s backups all over the world.

And it seems in taking Snowden’s Journo’s Boyfriend’s data, they have finally figured out what was in the documents Snowden took. For now they try some more disinformation: Leaking more stuff to a different, more government friendly newspaper, the “Independent”.

The Independent write about not governments spying on their own citizens, but governments spying on the Arabs. Their source, they carefully say, “was contained in the leaked documents obtained from the NSA by Edward Snowden“. Yet Snowden says he never talked to the Indi.

Which makes sense, for they never said he did, they just said that their source (likely the government) said that Snowden HAS this info.

They deliberately leak things against the national interest in order to be able to say that things against the national interest have been leaked!

And they do it so badly that it’s obvious what’s going on.

It’s all so funny. Lies, counter-lies, leaks, spying, secret courts enforcing secret laws, CEOs banned from talking about their own forced complicity, Lavabit closing down in order to not have to spy on it’s own users as orderd by secret courts and secret laws. Utter incompetence and surprising technological abilities.

Or it would be, if it were just the spooks being completely unable to trust anything in their world. But now they’re dragging us all in of course. We’re all being spied on now!

See also Adam Curtis’s post about spies: Bugger, in which he points out that “MI5 – whose job it was to catch spies that threatened Britain – had never by its own devices caught a spy in its entire history.”

Must get around to reading Illuminatus again. Cline knows where it’s at.