We frequently hear warnings of the Fifty States (or some one state) becoming a “police state.”
Merriam-Webster’s Police state definition is – a political unit characterized by repressive governmental control of political, economic, and social life usually by an arbitrary exercise of power by police and especially secret police in place of regular operation of administrative and judicial organs of the government according to publicly known legal procedures.
But what does that really translate to? Here are thirteen common characteristics of such a thing:
- You must have permission to enter, remain, or leave a jurisdiction. Examples: Gunnison, Colorado and the Oglala Lakota Nation, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe in South Dakota, and Gallup, New Mexico.
- You are prohibited from doing any activity which does not have any potential to harm or threaten another person, even with their consent. (Even if you CAN do that activity with a permission slip from the government.) (Example: stay-at-home orders: house arrest, without conviction of a crime or any due process.)
- You are under constant surveillance, often with secrecy, by the elite and their minions. At the same time, the workings of government are shrouded in secrecy. (Example: government cameras or government access to private cameras: using cell phones to track persons, even if not by name)
- There is a widespread police presence – which may include military and paramilitary forces, uniformed and plainsclothes policemen, security guards and bodyguards of the elite. (Heavy police presence especially around public buildings and in areas where people are likely to gather: schools, etc.)
- Police responses are almost always in force: multiple vehicles and officers. Police and their responding support forces are heavily militarized and act, often with little provocation, with force. Including deadly force. (Example: everyday life in most American urban areas.)
- There are perpetual wars – internal as well as external. An empire, with troops stationed in the lands of allies and occupied “former” enemies. (Examples: the FedGov and other NATO members for the last 30+ years, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, etc.)
- There is martial law, whether actually declared or not, in which bureaucrats and police have the power to order and immediately enforce cessation of certain activities or mandate actions without court or other due process. (Example: Current COVID-19 Panic.)
- Almost everyone is suspected by government of something, and must constantly prove they have not and are not committing a crime. (Examples: American tax system (property, sales, and income; mandatory testing for diseases like COVID-19)
- Many common actions with little or no risk of harm or damage (to yourself or others), are prohibited or require obtaining permits, licenses and paying fees (taxes) to do. (Example: Licensing of hairdressers, barbers, manicurists, lemonade stands, etc.)
- You have little or no recourse against the police and other government bureaucracies. That is, effective recourse, since complaint systems often exist just to relieve anger and pressure. (Examples: Current crop of wicked judges in the Fifty States and most of the world today.)
- More and more specific actions of day-to-day life are dictated by government regulations and “guidelines.” Supported by government lies – false facts, false claims, and claiming that opponents to government are lying. (Examples: daily news, public health orders, public service announcements on radio and online.)
- Police are excessively honored, even semi-deified, as providing incredible service, facing constant extreme danger, and not being appreciated enough. As part of these, police are often not required to obey the same basic laws as “mundanes” – including safety rules for traffic and common courtesy. (Examples: most of the known world, especially American cities like NYC, Philadelphia, San Francisco.)
- People’s first reaction to a suggestion to do something is to ask, “is that legal?” or “do we have permission to do that?” or “can we get permission to do that?” (Examples: Talk to your family and friends.)
Keep in mind that although most actions in a police state ARE government actions, it is not at all uncommon to find “private” business and “non-profit” (“non-governmental”) organizations fronting for government agencies. Either under contract or through cooperative agreements. Here we see how police states are often fascist.
Also remember that a key element of a police state is a compliant and enabling press (media) – not just forced but an active participant and instigator of the processes of the police state.
An example: Google and Apple are going to “save” us from shutdowns and the Beer Flu panic by making it possible to trace contacts and exposure? So says an article published at medium.com. This bizarre attitude is a textbook example of giving up liberty for false security and safety – the perfect mindset for subjects of a police state. Stupidly, the author claims that the apps (by which Google already tracks us “anonymously”) offers the most “privacy-friendly solution” to preventing outbreaks.
Again, as discussed in defining tyrants, the solution to a police state has been known and worked since the time of the Frumentarii of the Roman Empire, but especially in the last century: barring an outside force destroying them (Roman Empire, Imperial Japan, Dritte Reich) it requires rebellion – sometimes peaceful but usually sliding into violence and often bloody violence: the Russian (Czarist) Empire, Communist Romania, and more.
Police states, like all other forms of government, cannot survive the withdrawal of the “consent of the governed.” That is, a majority (usually a supermajority) of people who are willing to submit to the evils of the police state, and a powerful minority willing and able to enforce the edicts and power of the state with abuse, force, and violence.
It is time to end (again) any and all police states.