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Is There a 'Drone' in Your Future?

Askia Muhammad | 6/7/2012, 2:26 p.m.

Is there a "drone" in your future? Indubitably!

What's a drone? The first definition of a drone is a male honeybee that has no sting and gathers no honey. Then there's the definition of a parasite that lives on the labors of others. The drone I'm wondering about coming soon into all our lives is an unmanned aircraft or ship guided by remote control. Indubitably.

What's indubitably? That means something that's too evident to even be doubted.

In Afghanistan, and especially in Pakistan, and Yemen where the U.S. is supposedly not at war, remote controlled drone aircraft have been doing a lot of the war's "heavy lifting," that is killing targets without even the possibility of casualties by U.S. military forces. In war terms, that's like going to Heaven without having to die.

In a number of secure bunkers thousands of miles away inside this country [this is work that is too sensitive to outsource to places like India or the Philippines], young soldiers who grew up with Play Station video games the way Vietnam era soldiers played checkers, are guiding the flight of these unmanned aircraft over hostile territory delivering bombs and missile strikes, "surgically" murdering people by the hundreds on a list approved personally by President Barack Obama.

It's not really like killing people. It's like playing a game. Reset. After a hard day's work at the controls, these soldiers go home to their families, with none of the post-traumatic-stress-disorders that soldiers get when they pull the triggers and hear their victim's scream, and see their victim's blood ooze out of their dying bodies. And did I mention the "best part?" There's no shooting back by the enemy, because the drones are unmanned and there are no American casualties.

Well, drones have become a growth industry. The government has approved them for use by domestic police forces. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has already said yes, and soon they will be "policing" the highways, catching speeders and other individuals who break the law.

As the drone industry makes technological advances, the devices are getting smaller and quieter, and even more difficult for people to detect. Already there are experimental drones the size of hummingbirds. Soon I'm sure, they will be as small as a honeybee. Can you imagine this spy aircraft buzzing around your garden, watching you or your neighbors while you sunbathe, for example? All the while you're thinking it's an innocent insect, and not George Orwell's "Big Brother" gathering "intelligence" about you and your family's habits. So what? I'm a good citizen. That's no big deal.

Meanwhile, the Senate is close to renewing controversial measures that critics say would allow the government to spy on emails and phone calls of U.S. citizens to be monitored without a warrant. That's boring, mister.

The Select Committee on Intelligence has voted to extend controversial amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that were set to expire at the end of this year. Yawn. Get to the good part.

"What we're asking is that they slow down this process and start first with the question: What type of information are they picking up? How many Americans are being affected? What is the government doing with it?" says Michelle Richardson of the American Civil Liberties Union, which has sued over the U.S. government's surveillance practices. She's nothing but a whiner.

No she's not!

This really is serious business. William Binney, who served in the National Security Agency (NSA) for nearly 40 years, including a stint as technical director of its World Geopolitical and Military Analysis Reporting Group told Pacifica Radio's "Democracy Now!" that since he retired from the NSA in 2001, the NSA's data mining [spy] program has become so vast that it could "create an Orwellian state." Askia, your point is?

"Instead of trying to use discipline and living up to their oath of office to defend the Constitution, [Congress has] decided to violate the civil liberties and the rights of all U.S. citizens," says Binney.

My point is that it's about 30 years late, but George Orwell's "1984" is upon us, and there's nothing we can do about it. Nothing that is except mind our manners at all times, and be on our "Ps" and "Qs," and keep our noses squeaky clean at all times, lest "The Machine" targets us, and our "number" comes up unbeknownst to us.

A drone is also a deep, sustained, or monotonous sound, a dull hum, such as what this warning must sound like to most people. Drone on.