I understand HOW: I do not understand WHY.
It was a bright cold day in April . . . Thus begins 1984 Orwell's prophetic vision, published in 1949, of the world as it is rapidly becoming.
Tomorrow, appropriately the 1st April, the Republic of Austria will join the growing band of EU states implementing the EU's Data Retention Laws. I believe this leaves only the EU nations of Germany, Rumania and the Czech Republic as currently non-compliant.
In 24 of the EU's 27 states, details of every individual's emails, phone calls, sms text messages and other electronic communications, presumably posts to this blog included, will be kept on computers at the Ministry of Truth for periods of at least 6 months and this is regardless of whether the citizen is a potential trouble maker like Orwell's hero Winston Smith or a veritable saint and a member of the Party or even of the Inner Party.
An announced War on Terror, originally known as The Crusades by US President George Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair, swiftly followed the 9/11 attack on the USA. The War on Terror quickly achieved its first objective which was to create an atmos-fear necessary to set in place new and overriding rules for the smooth running and surveillance of a Super State by means of its Thought Police.
In Orwell's novel the Super States keep the threat of the next crisis, normally a potential war, fluctuating between amber and red alert. Appropriate films are shown: . . . a ship full of refugees being bombed somewhere in the Mediterranean . . . a helicopter with a camera in its nose . . .
In his Afterword to 1984 Erich Fromm warns: . . . that unless the course of history changes, men all over the world will become soulless automatons, and will not even be aware of it . . . it would be most unfortunate if the reader smugly interpreted 1984 as another description of Stalinist barbarism, and if he does not see that it means us, too.