By Juan Cole, Informed Comment: How to Create a Dictatorship!
How to turn a democracy into a STASI authoritarian state in 10 easy steps: 1. Misuse the concept of a Top Secret government document, say, the date of D-Day and extend classification to trillions of mundane documents a year. 2. Classify all government crimes and violations of the Constitution as secret. 3. Create a class of 4.5 million privileged individuals, many of them corporate employees, with access to classified documents but allege it is illegal for the public to see leaked classified documents. 4. Spy on the public in violation of the Constitution. 5. Classify environmental activists as terrorists while allowing Big Coal and Big Oil to pollute and destroy the planet. 6. Share info gained from NSA spying on public with DEA, FBI, local law enforcement to protect pharmaceuticals & liquor industry from competition from pot, or protect polluters from activists. 7. Falsify to judges and defense attorneys how allegedly incriminating info was discovered. 8 Lie and deny to Congress you are spying on the public. 9. Criminalize the revelation of government crimes and spying as Espionage. 10. Further criminalize whistle blowing as "Terrorism", have compradors arrest innocent people, detain them, and confiscate personal effects with no cause or warrant i.e. David Miranda, partner of Glenn Greenwald. Presto, what looks like a democracy is really an authoritarian state ruling on its own behalf and that of 2000 corporations, data-basing the activities of 312 million innocent citizens and actively helping destroy the planer while forestalling climate activism.