Obama administration wants all federal employees to become 'spies'
RT:When President Obama was a Senator he said: “No more spying on citizens, who are not suspected of a crime”. It seems that things have changed now. What happened?
David Lindoff: He meant citizens except those who work for the federal government. Aside from the fact that, actually, we are spying on all the citizens, he’s also got this program now where the administration wants all federal employees in all agencies of the federal government to become spies reporting on the people who work next to them, in the next cubicle or in the next office. It’s an incredible extension of this Stasi like approach to life in America. At the same time it’s a completely inefficient and failed way to try to run a government bureaucracy. The worst thing about it, it has nothing to do with national security, because he is talking about every department of the government: the Department of Labor, the Food and Drug Administration, the health department. All these departments they have nothing to do with national security, he is telling people that they should rat out their neighbors and co-workers if they think they are doing something wrong.
RT:Is it safe to say that the government is getting a little paranoid? All of this didn’t stop Edward Snowden from actually “blowing the whistle”.
DL: Let’s be clear, this is not about national security; it’s about preventing people from telling the truth about problems within government, about corruption, about failed policies and so on. What it really is that the Obama administration has gone even beyond the Nixon administration in the 70s in its fear of leaks and in its effort to control the story. It’s trying to prevent the press from getting access to people inside the government, who would tell them the truth about what’s going on. All they get is public relations handouts from the government and its trying to prevent the government from being embarrassed.
RT:How do you then work for a government who doesn’t trust you, who wants to spy on your every move, not only where you work but, possibly, at home too. Isn’t this why Edward Snowden thought “we can’t continue like this, we have to break the silence whether it’s for civil liberties or within the people we work together with”?
DL: Absolutely. The minute that that policy got announced
a lot of people changed their plans about wanting to make a
career in the government. If you have a policy like that you are
eliminating the best people who you would like to work in a
government bureaucracy and you are attracting the ones who would
do that kind of thing, and, probably those are the ones who are
corrupt, the ones who would do any evil thing that the
administrators tell them to do. It is just an invitation to
massive corruption and abuse.