Unfortunately, I do not mean that we are living in the year 1984. If we were, Ronald Reagan would be President, spandex and big hair would be our go-to style choices, Jane Fonda would be teaching us aerobics, the Rubik’s Cube would be everyone’s game of choice and we would have our MTV.
Instead, I am referring to George Orwell’s novel 1984. The novel is set in a world of perpetual war, omnipresent government surveillance and public manipulation. In 1984, the political system is under the control of a privileged Inner Party elite that persecutes independent thinking as “thoughtcrimes.” The Party leader is Big Brother, who enjoys a cult of personality. Big Brother and the Party justify their oppressive rule in the name of the greater good. In Orwell’s world, the Ministry of Plenty rations and controls food, goods and domestic production. The Ministry of Truth controls information, such as news, entertainment and education. Sound familiar?
As in 1984, the National Security Agency (NSA) is engaging in mass surveillance by collecting and storing all phone records of all American citizens. NSA spying is governed by secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) courts. To illustrate the consequences of such a mass spying program, a 2005 Internal Revenue Service (IRS) training manual instructed agents to take information provided by the Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) Special Operations Division to begin new “independent” investigations of American taxpayers. Not only has it been revealed that the IRS has been using information obtained through the NSA to launch criminal investigations of American citizens, the IRS has admitted that it improperly targeted conservative groups, thus suppressing free speech.
Today Federal Election Commission (FEC) Chair Lee E. Goodman stated that, “The right has begun to break the left’s media monopoly, particularly through new media outlets like the internet, and I sense that some on the left are starting to rethink the breadth of the media exemption and internet communications.” Goodman, a Republican, went on to say, “The picking and choosing has started to occur. There are some in this building that think we can actually regulate.” If that were too occur than Goodman is “concerned about disparate treatment of conservative media.” What is interesting about the FEC is that, in 1986, Lois Lerner was the head of the enforcement division at the FEC. Lerner, the former Director of Exempt Organizations at the IRS, is the woman at the center of the IRS targeting scandal. One of Lerner’s former colleagues, Craig Engle, said that Lerner harbors a “suspicion” that conservative groups are intentionally flouting the law. Judicial Watch has obtained email exchanges between Lerner and FEC enforcement attorneys indicating that she had provided the FEC confidential tax returns of conservative groups. The IRS is persecuting conservative groups who are engaging in independent thought. It is clear that the IRS is this administration’s Ministry of Truth.
What greater good is this administration protecting by using federal agencies to suppress free speech? What greater good is worth the willing sacrifice of individual liberty? Imagine if a Republican administration had been so blatant at suppressing free thought and free speech? The Democrats would prosecute any Republican involved in such contemptible behavior. Remember when liberals protested against The Man? Now they have become The Man. They have shown themselves to be cowards in the face of opposition. They brand anyone who disagrees with their views a racist, a sexist, a classist or any other form of -ist they deem appropriate. They wield federal agencies like weapons to shut down those who dare to disagree with them. They control the mainstream media so that only their message is told. Now they want the FEC to regulate conservative media outlets like The Blaze and Drudge Report, further suppressing free thought. They rally around their Big Brother, who has certainly enjoyed a cult of personality.
Remember when in 2008 then Senator Obama said “we are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America?” To bring about this transformation, American could no longer be a free country. We would have to forsake our individual liberty for the greater good. President Obama’s signature law, Obamacare, has taken away our freedom of choice for the greater good of insuring the uninsured. In true Big Brother fashion, President Obama has called upon his Ministry of Truth, the IRS, to enforce Obamacare. The personal information with which Americans enter into healthcare.gov goes directly to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and to the IRS. Why does the DHS need to be involved in health insurance? President Obama uses his executive power to ignore parts of laws with which he disagrees, to selectively enforce laws and to legislate whatever he wants. When Obama said that he wanted to fundamentally transform our country, the hairs on the backs of our necks should have stood at attention. The tyranny he promised us has arrived. 1984 is here. And we are living it.