My laptop was new, just out of the box. There wasn’t time enough to program it with the things I needed in order to use it before leaving on a trip to San Antonio, Texas. I am, as Dr. J. Vernon McGee used to say, “a back number” when it comes to acumen and literacy. I need all of the assistance I can get in navigating the Net. On top of that, I need JAWS (Jobs Accessible Word System)–a voice synthesis computer program–to tell me what I’m doing on my computer, because I’ve been blind since 1993.
So it was that I didn’t have my anytime-I-want-it Internet access and email available to me while on the trip. This was quite disconcerting, as I am constantly online and using email during the course of any given day. I felt at times imprisoned at the loss of liberty to get into cyberspace any time I wished.
I reflected during those hours without my computer much like we old-timers sometimes get hung up on nostalgia about our days of yesteryear when we didn’t have air conditioning in the hot summers. How in the world did we ever do without those environment-controlling technical wonders? I wouldn’t have to worry about returning to those humidity-filled, sweat-inducing days of yore, I was pretty sure. And, at least I knew I could hang on until I returned to the computer, Internet, email, and the like. My time in lock-up, away from Internet access, was not permanent.
However, an executive order by the president of the United States could, at any moment in the future, end freedom from worry about loss of ability to conduct business through such electronic communications. According to some experts, liberty’s last gleaming, so far as cyberspace is concerned, is as near as the next crisis deemed severe enough to invoke pulling the plug on our Internet availability.
The presidential dictate of Friday, July 6, 2012 gives government unprecedented new authority to take over wired and wireless private communication networks under pretext of national security. The White House edict will permit such national security entities as the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Defense, Department of State, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to formulate, implement, and direct policy recommendations and plans for ensuring continuity of government communication capabilities in time of crisis.
The Obama directive authorized the establishment of a National Security and Emergency Preparedness Communications Committee (NS/EP). Representatives from each of the agencies constitute the crisis-management system for controlling all communications within the nation.
According to the executive order, “The Federal Government must have the ability to communicate at all times and under all circumstances to carry out its most critical and time sensitive missions.”
A watchdog group, the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), issued a statement that said, “The problem with the executive order is that it also grants the DHS new authority to seize private communication facilities when necessary and to effectively shut down or limit civilian communications in a national crisis.”
Amie Stepanovich, associate litigation council at EPIC, said the provision that grants the government such encompassing control over private communications is troubling. She maintains that the complete takeover of private networks for government communications purposes during a crisis could degrade or severely compromise the civilian population’s ability to communicate in an emergency.
Stepanovich said, “This specific authority is something that should have been granted through Congress, rather than through executive order.”
And therein resides the reason for the phrase liberty’s last gleaming for the title of this commentary. This president has taken every opportunity, it seems to me, to dilute American liberty through presidential edict, as opposed to seeking approval through constitutional means. We have watched this process take place time after time, even to the point of foisting Obama Care upon a population that overwhelmingly disapproves of the enslaving legislation–legislation that was found unconstitutional under the guise of which it was congressionally proposed and approved–as a mandate to require the purchase of health insurance.
It took a Supreme Court chief justice to find a surreptitious way to make it constitutional by calling the legislation not a mandate, but a tax, in order to get the forced payment strapped upon the backs of the already national-debt-laden American people.
Another deep gully –that of impending, internet tyranny– materialized in America’s landscape of liberty, caused by the flood of executive orders that are eroding our freedoms. No doubt, the biblically prophesied great world leader that is soon to appear will completely control all communications, ostensibly for purposes of instituting measures that the people of planet earth will believe are the answer to the great crisis of the time.
I’m convinced that the crisis that will be too good for Antichrist to waste will be the crisis created in the wake of the Rapture of the church. But, for believers who go to be with Christ, it will mean true liberty forever.