Welcome to — the video series from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy that covers some of the most important developments in open source intelligence news. This week:

Story #1: ‘Most Transparent’ White House Ever Rewrote FOIA to Suppress Sensitive Docs
Wikipedia: Sunshine Week
‘Everywhere You Look, There’s Conspiracy Afoot’ by Cass Sunstein
Cass (Cognitive Infiltration) Sunstein Working on New Book About ‘Conspiracy Theories’
Federal Reserve Is Not a Conspiracy: Sunstein
Cass Sunstein’s Conspiracy-Related AMA on Reddit
Half Of Americans Believe In Medical Conspiracy Theories
Oregon Sen. Wyden Says CIA ‘Embedded In A Culture Of Misinformation’

Story #2: First Reporter to Write Story on LA Earthquake Wasn’t a Person
A Fundamental Way Newspaper Sites Need to Change

Story #3: Scientists’ Hidden Links to GMO Food Giants
Speed Up GM Crops in UK, Say Scientists; Dismissing Opponents’ Arguments as ‘Neurosis’
PDF: Letter Advising the Prime Minister on the Risks and Benefits of GM Technologies
Rothamsted Scientist’s Role in Destruction of Key GM Research
Interview With Pere Puigdomènech on Creating Artificial Diversity
The Infanticide Advocate Promoting Golden Rice
Bugs Have Already Evolved Immunity to GMO Corn
South Africa Forces Monsanto to Withdrawal ‘Unsubstantiated Advertising

Updates: Australia PM Says Satellite Imagery Found Objects Possibly Related to #MH370
How to Steal an Airplane: From 9/11 to #MH370
Another Banker Jumps Off Building in NYC, 12th Banker Suicide This Year
How Cold War-Hungry Neocons Stage Managed Liz Wahl’s Resignation

#NewWorldNextWeek: @GJSalisbury UK Nuclear Power Station Taken Offline Over Fears of Fukushima-Style Disaster
Revealed: The MoD’s Secret Cyberwarfare Programme
@RvTheory6 ‘Ripple Effect’ Interviews James Evan Pilato of @MediaMonarchy

Visit to get previous episodes in various formats to download, burn and share. And as always, stay up-to-date by subscribing to the feeds from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy Thank you.

Previous Episode: The Mystery of the Missing Plane

Category : Videos | Blog

by James Corbett
March 18, 2014

As the mystery of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370—the Boeing 777 bound for Beijing that vanished seemingly without a trace—approaches the two week mark, the talking heads of the corporate news networks are becoming increasingly desperate to fill the 24/7 news cycle with meaningless speculation and blather. In their desperation, they have even turned to speculation on a subject long shunned as outlandish conspiracy theory by these very same networks: the possibility of remote control hijackings of commercial passenger jets.

The speculation is prompted in part by a report in the Federal Register last November noting that several models of 777, including the 777-200 model used for Flight 370, were susceptible to outside attack.

Question mark headlines musing about the possibility of such a “cyber hijacking” serve to obscure or even deny a very important point. The first such “cyber hijackings” most likely took place over 12 years ago, on September 11th, 2001 using technology that was tested, proven and available long before that infamous date.

Although unamnned aerial vehicles, or “UAV,” like the Global Hawk, Predator and Reaper drones used in the US’ illegal extrajudicial assassination program are thought of as cutting edge military hardware, UAVs of various sorts have been used since August 22, 1849, when Austria launched 200 pilotless, bomb-filled balloons on the city of Venice. Development of UAVs continued with radio-controlled drones and pilotless torpedos developed in WWI, the creation of the US Air Force’s “Pilotless Air Craft” branch in 1946, the deployment of military UAVs in the Vietnam War, Israel’s development of the first drone with real-time surveillance capabilities in the Yom Kippur War and US use of the technology in Grenada before the birth of the modern era with the extensive deployment of Pioneer drones in the First Gulf War.

When it comes to the remote control of civilian aircraft, President Bush stated in late September 2001 that he would devote federal funds to developing new technologies for combating the threat of hijacking…including remote control technology.

But even at that time, remote control technology had been successfully demonstrated for commercial jetliners for nearly two decades. This is actual footage of a joint NASA / FAA experiment conducted in 1984 at Edwards Air Force Base in which a Boeing 720 was remote controlled through multiple takeoffs and landings before being crashed in a “controlled impact demonstration.”

In August of 2001, this technology was further demonstrated by Raytheon, which successfully took off and landed a Boeing 727 six times at Holloman AFB in New Mexico without a pilot on board. Raytheon also developed a sensor suite for the Air Force’s Global Hawk drones and Raytheon Network Centric Systems has recently won multiple contracts to help develop advanced communications systems for the E-4B, the US government’s so-called doomsday plane that was spotted above the White House shortly before the strike on the Pentagon and which has since been confirmed was one of four functioning Doomsday Planes operating in the skies on that day.

Curiously, on 9/11 itself Raytheon employees with ties to the company’s electronic warfare division, including a man described as the company’s “dean of electronic warfare” and multiple senior engineers for electronic systems, were among the listed passengers on each of the three planes that hit their targets that day. Raytheon also had an office in WTC2 on the 91st floor, and despite the fact that there were only four survivors from the Twin Towers who were above the impact zone at the time of the plane hits, no Raytheon employees died in the office that day.

Another curious connection presents itself in Dov Zakheim, the comptroller of the Bush Pentagon and, until taking over his Pentagon role in 2001, CEO of SPC International, a subsidiary of Sytstem Planning Corporation, which provides a so-called “Flight Termination System” for the US military that the company boasts provides “a fully redundant turnkey range safety and test system for remote control and flight termination of airborne test vehicles.” As comptroller of the Pentagon, Zakheim was responsible for the trillions of dollars that could not be accounted for in the Pentagon’s books at the time of 9/11 and which prompted Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld to declare a “war on bureaucracy” on September 10, 2001.

Flight 77 was supposedly piloted by Hani Hanjour, a flight school dropout who could not handle a Cessna 172, but somehow managed to steer a 757 in an 8,000 foot descending 270 degree corskscrew turn at 500 mph to come exactly level with the ground. Neither experienced pilots nor aviation officials could believe that such a move could be pulled off with such precision at such high speeds by any but the most experienced pilot. Watching the flight on her radar screen, Dulles International Airport air traffic controller Danielle O’Brien later remarked: “The speed, the maneuverability, the way that he turned, we all thought in the radar room, all of us experienced air traffic controllers, that that was a military plane.”

By what we are expected to believe is a massive coincidence, the flight ended up hitting the Pentagon in the budget analyst office where the DoD staffers overseen by Zakheim were working on the question of the missing trillions.

As 9/11 researcher Aidan Monaghan told The Corbett Report in 2011, the remote control hypothesis also makes sense of various anomalies in the flight path of United 175 that hit World Trade Center 2.

As incredible as such a narrative is to the general public, that incredibility stems largely from the media’s steadfast refusal to report on the proven technologies to accomplish such a cyber hijacking that have been available for well over a decade.

Whether or not Flight 370 was the victim of such an attack or something different altogether remains to be seen. But the many pieces of the 9/11 puzzle pointing to the use of remote control technologies to pilot the flights on that fateful day, from Raytheon’s test flights of remote-controlled passenger jets to Zakheim’s involvement with a company responsible for remote-control “flight termination systems” to the precision of United 175′s bank angle and turn start time to the presence of the E-4B doomsday planes in the skies that morning, provide a compelling counter-narrative to the tabloid press’ claim that Flight 370 may be the first example of cyber hijacking.

One other piece of that puzzle provides yet further credence to the claim of remote control planes on 9/11. In a story so bizarre that it simply cannot be shoehorned into the official 9/11 story, police officers stopped a strange van near their temporary command post next to the still-smouldering twin towers while the chaos unfolded on the morning of 9/11. According to the official report of the Mineta Transportation Institute:

“There were continuing moments of alarm. A panel truck with a painting of a plane flying into the World Trade Center was stopped near the temporary command post. It proved to be rented to a group of ethnic Middle Eastern people who did not speak English. Fearing that it might be a truck bomb, the NYPD immediately evacuated the area, called out the bomb squad, and detained the occupants until a thorough search was made. The vehicle was found to be an innocent delivery truck.”

No explanation of who these men were or why they had a picture of a “remote controlled jet flying into the World Trade Center” painted on their “delivery” van on the morning of 9/11 have ever been provided, much less even asked for by the complacent, complicit mainstream media. If and when more details of the missing Malaysian Airlines flight do eventually surface, don’t expect the media to do any better job answering questions about it, or connecting any of the 9/11 dots in what may very well have been the world’s first “cyber hijacking” nearly 13 years ago.

Category : Videos | Blog

Welcome to — the video series from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy that covers some of the most important developments in open source intelligence news. This week:

Story #1: The Mystery of Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
@GJSalisbury: Guide to the Missing Malaysia Airlines Plane Conspiracy Theories
Flashback: Malaysia’s Longest-Serving Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Hosts 9/11 Truth Conference
Special Conditions: Boeing Model 777-200, -300, and -300ER Series Airplanes; Aircraft Electronic System Security Protection From Unauthorized Internal Access
August 2001: Large Passenger Jet Flown and Landed by Remote Control
Dov Zakheim and the 9/11 Conspiracy
Interview w/ Aidan Monaghan on United 175
East Harlem Apartment Explosion Kills at Least Six
CIA Feud With Senate Panel Puts Lack of Post-9/11 Accountability In Spotlight

Story #2: Staking $1 Billion That Herbalife Will Fail, Then Lobbying to Bring It Down
Background: William A. “Bill” Ackman

Story #3: ‘Between Two Ferns’ Boosts Traffic to Obamacare Website
Joe McGinniss, Author of “The Selling of the President,” Dies at 71
espite Expensive Ads, ‘Cover Oregon’ Worst At Enrolling Young

#NewWorldNextWeek: @lightviperr The NSA Wants To Spy on Itself
OpheliaPG ‘Slain’ Mexico Cartel Leader Dies at Second Time

Visit to get previous episodes in various formats to download, burn and share. And as always, stay up-to-date by subscribing to the feeds from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy Thank you.

Previous Episode: The Resignation Seen ‘Round the World

Category : Videos | Blog

by James Corbett
March 11, 2014

When Secretary of State John Kerry made his now infamous statement about Russia’s actions in Ukraine, the hypocrisy was immediately apparent to all but the most clueless of viewers.

But perhaps Kerry wasn’t so wrong to expect the public to let him get away with such a transparently hypocritical statement. After all, the public have always been happy to go along with every pretext for war presented to them for decade after decade.

After Iraq there was Libya, where we were asked to believe that the invasion of the oil-rich country and rush to set up a central bank by the foreign-backed opposition was nothing more than an attempt to save the country from a power-mad dictator who was arming his troops with Viagra to help them rape innocent civilians…until this pretext was overturned by a pesky reporter asking for actual evidence of these crimes.

Before Iraq there was Afghanistan, where we were asked to believe that the war was necessary in order to get Bin Laden…until we were told that was not actually the case.

Similarly with the invasion of Grenada.

And the Vietnam War


And WWI.

And the Spanish-American War.

It would be the height of naiveté to believe that the political caste of our own age were any different in their willingness to use blatantly fabricated pretexts to rally the public into war.

But perhaps the public is finally catching on. “Kony 2012” became a viral video sensation two years ago with press-seeking celebrities endorsing the slick propaganda seeking to justify the deployment of AFRICOM troops to Uganda in the search for Joseph Kony.

But the video was quickly exposed as a sham when independent internet-based researchers discovered that the producers of the video, a group called “Invisible Children,” had been working with USAID and attended a US State Department linked summit in London in 2010. The simplistic Kony narrative was further undermined when the internet enabled Ugandans to speak out directly against the video to viewers around the world.

Similarly in Syria, the August 2013 chemical weapons attack in Ghouta was quickly seized upon as a pretext for military intervention in the country.

And now, another Kony 2012-like video production is attempting to make a similar case for why Americans and their NATO-bloc allies need to be involved in the current Ukrainian crisis.

And just like Kony 2012, this video, too, was exposed for its ties back to the Council on Foreign Relations and US State Department foreign policy apparatus.

Perhaps the saddest part of it all is that, once the people whose plight was exploited for the war propaganda have been used, abused, chewed up and spit out by the war machine, they are completely forgotten about. How many of those same flag-waving propaganda repeaters that pretended to care about the Libyan people, for example, even know what is happening in the country now that the NATO bombs have stopped raining down and the corporate media is telling us to look elsewhere?

The simple truth is that the people who fight and die in these bloody wars of aggression are never the ones who benefit from the slaughter. For this reason, the combined resources of the State Department, the corporate media, and countless foundation-funded NGOs are required to sell these lies to an increasingly skeptical public. But now we stand at a crossroads of history, with the public, perhaps for the first time, able to instantly research and expose the propagandistic claims of the ruling establishment almost as soon as they are made.

In some ways, the public is better positioned than ever to abandon that “19th century world” of war pretexts that Kerry was referring to. Perhaps we can start by consigning politicians like Kerry, and all the other liars who have enabled countless slaughter, warfare and bloodshed throughout the years, to the dustbin of history by simply refusing to believe their transparent lies.

Category : Videos | Blog

We’ve seen the rollout of the MSM propaganda using over-the-top hyperbole and flat-out lies to try to demonize Russia in the lead up to the “new cold war.” But is this just part of the dialectic, trying to get us to buy into one side or the other in a rigged game? Should we devolve into mere spectators choosing sides in a squabble between #TeamObama and #TeamPutin? Join us this week on The Corbett Report as we explore whether the enemy of our enemy is indeed our friend.

CLICK HERE to download the audio mp3 of this podcast.


Russia Today anchor Abby Martin speaks out against Russian “invasion” of Crimea
Time Reference: 00:56

NYT hit piece on Abby Martin tries to smear her as 9/11 truther
Time Reference: 02:41

Eric Draitser on Putin and the Future of Russia
Time Reference: 11:52

Corbett on Putin’s Syrian Crisis Op-Ed
Time Reference: 12:10

Paul Craig Roberts on Putin and the Ukraine Crisis
Time Reference: 12:25

William Engdahl on Putin and the Ukraine Crisis
Time Reference: 12:54

John Kerry on Meet The Press
Time Reference: 15:23

NGO Lies, US Government Ties, and Pu**y Riot: Who Are the Real Monsters?
Time Reference: 16:32

Pussy Riot Propaganda Is For Naïve Americans
Time Reference: 17:19

The Truth About Russia’s “Anti-Gay” Law
Time Reference: 18:08

Russian Federation Anti-Gay Laws: An Analysis & Deconstruction
Time Reference: 18:14

Episode 250 – Crashes of Convenience: PLF 101
Time Reference: 20:17

Putin Proposes Using Smart Cameras to Identify Immigrants
Time Reference: 22:29

Truthloader on Putin’s Rule
Time Reference: 22:52

Putin dissolves state news agency, tightens grip on Russia media
Time Reference: 23:45

The Killing of Russian Journalists
Time Reference: 24:45

Two Russian Journalists Killed In One Day
Time Reference: 25:05

Russian Journalist Assaulted
Time Reference: 25:22

The Assassination of Russia – FSB false flag bombings of 1999
Time Reference: 26:39

Russia’s Putin says wants to build “Eurasian Union”
Time Reference: 31:37

Putin Turns Attention to Eurasian Union
Time Reference: 33:05

Ryan Dawson Looks for a Third Way in the Ukraine Crisis
Time Reference: 36:12
Category : Videos | Blog

Welcome to — the video series from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy that covers some of the most important developments in open source intelligence news. This week:

Story #1: Osama bin Laden’s Son-in-Law Trial Begins in New York City
FBI Had Human Source in Contact With Osama Since 1993
U.S., Allies Had Contact with Bin Laden and 9/11 Hijackers Many Times Before 9/11
Sibel Edmonds on Gladio B, Protected Terrorists and Stifled Investigations

Story #2: American Anchor for Russia Today Resigns On-Air Over Invasion of Ukraine
RT Anchor Liz Wahl Explains Why She Quit
RT Responds to Liz Wahl’s Resignation
RT’s Abby Martin Goes Off on ‘Corporate Media’ Propaganda During Piers Morgan Interview
Piers Morgan and CNN Plan End to His Prime-Time Show
Pierre Omidyar co-funded Ukraine revolution groups with US government, documents show
Glenn Greenwald on media ownership and bias…before he went to work for a billionaire
Ben Affleck and Seth Rogen Testify Before Senate on Congo and Alzheimer’s
What Connects the Walsall Anarchists, Nazi Pigeons and Ben Affleck?

Story #3: IBM Supercomputer Watson Now Has His Very Own Food Truck
Solar-Powered Drones from Facebook Could Deliver Internet Around the World
With ‘Drone To Home’ Service, Netflix Uses Satire Against Amazon

Updates: Bitcoin Firm FirstMeta CEO Found Dead in Suspected Suicide
NWNW Flashback: Bankster Suicides and Bank Run Chatter
Kroger, Safeway Say No to #GMO Salmon – Will Costco Be Next?
NWNW Flashback: Kraft, Chick-fil-A and Subway All Remove Various Chemical Additives After Outcry
NWNW Flashback: Biotech Company Behind ‘Frankenfish’ Faces Uncertain Future
James Corbett on The Jack Blood Show – March 4 2014
James Evan Pilato on The Jack Blood Show – March 5 2014

Visit to get previous episodes in various formats to download, burn and share. And as always, stay up-to-date by subscribing to the feeds from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy Thank you.

Previous Episode: Ukraine Set to Ignite in Civil War

Category : Videos | Blog

From the official story of 9/11 to the drug war narrative to Omidyar’s hope and change, people allow themselves to believe the most transparent lies and propaganda. But why? On this edition of the BFP roundtable, James Corbett, Guillermo Jimenez and Sibel Edmonds ask (and attempt to answer) the question of why people believe stupid things.

Category : Videos | Blog

by James Corbett
March 5, 2014

In late 2004, protests erupted after Viktor Yanukovych won the 2004 Ukrainian Presidential election, with protestors claiming that the vote had been rigged. The protests forced a revote, in which Yanukovych’s rival, Viktor Yuschenko, was elected president. This movement, dubbed the Orange Revolution for the orange ribbons and clothing sported by its members, was one of a series of so-called colour revolutions which swept the former Soviet Republics in the last decade.

The two events are not unrelated. As The Guardian noted at the time of the protests:

“[...]the campaign [Orange Revolution] is an American creation, a sophisticated and brilliantly conceived exercise in western branding and mass marketing that, in four countries in four years, has been used to try to salvage rigged elections and topple unsavoury regimes.[...]The Democratic parrty’s National Democratic Institute, the Republican party’s International Republican Institute, the US state department and USAid are the main agencies involved in these grassroots campaigns.”

So it is not without reason that seasoned political observers looked for outside connections to the recent protests in Ukraine that has, in an almost exact repeat of the 2004 protests, sought to overthrow the elected government of Viktor Yanukovych in order to install Viktor Yuschenko’s political allies. Those connections have not been difficult to find.

Audio of Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland apparently dictating who the US wanted “in” and “out” of the supposedly grassroots-supported interim government only came as a surprise to those who did not believe Washington or its allies in the Washington Consensus were actively involved with the ongoing protests in the country. As did the revelation of her admission last December that the US had already pumped $5 billion into the funding of the Ukrainian opposition.

As did the appearance of confirmed terrorist supporter John McCain at a rally with the leader of the Ukrainian neo-Nazi Svoboda party leader. As did the appointment of a central banker as the interim Prime Minister and his immediate announcement that the country was in talks with the US, EU, and IMF for emergency loans. As did the appearance of a slick new viral propaganda video in English promoting the supposedly grassroots uprising which was immediately exposed as finding its “inspiration” in Council on Foreign Relations member Larry Diamond, who has worked closely with the same N.E.D. and USAid that were linked to the 2004 Orange Revolution.

In the latest startling revelation, has published documents implicating the Omidyar Network in the funding of the current Ukrainian protest movement. The Omidyar Network is the NGO of billionaire Ebay co-founder Pierre Omidyar, who recently set up “First Look” as an outlet for (among others) Glenn Greenwald, Jeremy Scahill and Laura Poitras to selectively publish some of the Snowden document archive, 99% of which continues to be withheld from the public.

As geopolitical analysts from across the board explain, the Ukrainian coup has been deliberately provoked by outside agents to promote a combination of US, EU, NATO and IMF interests.

Perhaps more worrying than the interference itself are its potential implications. As Russia’s every move is now being scrutinized for a possible military response to the ongoing crisis, the specter of a larger military operation now hangs over Eastern Europe. Part of the decade-long encirclement of Russia by NATO and deliberate provocations on Russia’s doorstep, this process of brinksmanship now threatens to plunge the region into a war the consequences of which cannot be foreseen, let alone contained.

As supposedly “progressive” outlets once again scramble to throw their support behind the billionaire oligarchs and NGOs that have helped to destabilize the country, and as neocons unite with neoliberals in their agenda to carve up Ukraine for western interests, it remains to be seen what genuine alternative outlets will stand up against this blatant interference and stand up for the principle that it is up to the Ukrainian people, and no one else, to decide what happens in their country.

Category : Videos | Blog

Welcome to — the video series from Corbett Report and Media Monarchy that covers some of the most important developments in open source intelligence news. This week:

Story #1: Russia Puts Military on High Alert As Crimea Protests Leave One Man Dead
Developing: Armed Men Seize Government HQ, Raise Russian Flag in Ukraine’s Crimea
William Engdahl Exposes the Western Agenda in Ukraine
Putin Drills Ground Troops at Ukraine’s Doorstep as US Warns Against Intervention
Russia to Expand Its Worldwide Military Presence
Russian Warship Docked in Havana Without Explanation
Euromaidan Coup
Paul Craig Roberts Connects the Dots on the Ukrainian Revolution
NWNW Flashback: Who is Behind the Ukrainian Riots?

Story #2: Bitcoin Under Threat As Mt. Gox Goes Offline
New Exchange Will Put Bitcoin Regulation in the Hands of Wall Street Bankers
As Mt. Gox Collapses, SecondMarket Prepares to Launch a Bitcoin Exchange in New York
Make Or Break Time for Bitcoin
Bitcoin Price Resilient as Antonopoulos, Andreessen Weigh in on Mt. Gox
How To Prove That Exchanges Really Have Your Money
‘Bitcoin’ on Media Monarchy
‘Bitcoin’ on Cyber Space War

Story #3: Can Twitter Predict Major Events? A New Study Says Yes
PDF: Predicting Crowd Behavior with Big Public Data
Chicago PD Believes It Can See The Future, Starts Warning Citizens About Crimes They Might Commit
NWNW Flashback: The Software That Can Predict the Future

Bonus: #SaintHicks: 20 Years After Death of Bill Hicks, Legend Secured
NYC Marks 21st Anniversary of ’93 World Trade Center Bombing
Today In History for February 27: Reichstag Fire, Gulf War I
Geopolitiks: Interview w/ Eva Bartlett of InGaza on Human Rights in

Visit to get previous episodes in various formats to download, burn and share. And as always, stay up-to-date by subscribing to the feeds from Corbett Report and Media
Monarchy Thank you.

Previous Episode: The Software That Can Predict the Future

Category : Videos | Blog

by James Corbett
February 25, 2014

You would have to have been living under a rock to have missed the rollout of so-called “smart” technologies in recent years, but for those unfortunate rock dwellers who have somehow avoided the “smart” propaganda, there is no shortage of flashy, cartoonish PR puff pieces that are willing to sell it to you.

Although these bubbly, feel-good, lowest common denominator commercials leave the viewer with the warm fuzzies, they do little to explain what this so-called “smart” technology actually is. Stripped of all the hype and sweaty-palmed hyperbole of the massive PR campaign surrounding it, the only thing that “smart” really means is that a given piece of technology can be linked up to a network to send and receive information.

The real question, of course, is why we supposedly need every gadget and appliance in our home, from our toaster to our thermostat, to be networked at all. Like all such questions, there are two answers: the cover story and the true story.

The cover story is that networking these technologies will allow us to reduce the amount of power that we consume and, as an added bonus, save us money on our monthly power bill.

What’s more, the linking of all of these appliances into one seamless personal network—the cover story assures us—will finally allow for the Jetsons-like future that has been promised us for decades.

Those with properly functioning bull excrement detectors might question whether the embedding of RFIDs and processors in our fridges and coffeemakers and egg timers is really all about saving a few Watts of electricity or the hassle of pressing a few buttons. This is where the true story of smart technology comes in.

Smart technology represents less of a breakthrough in power distribution and more of a revolution in complete, constant, panopticon-like surveillance of everyone. As these smart technologies begin to invade our homes, we are becoming mere nodes in a giant network that we yet but dimly comprehend. Called the “Internet of Things,” the plan is to create a network that will eventually include every single object on the planet. And as the public is finally becoming aware, such networks provide golden opportunities for corporations and governments alike to collect data and spy on the population.

This is not mere conjecture. Before becoming enmeshed in an affair that ultimately derailed his career, former CIA director David Petraeus bragged openly about how these smart technologies would allow intelligence agencies to spy on everyone in their own homes, using their own appliances. Speaking at a summit for In-Q-Tel, the CIA’s venture capital firm, Petraeus noted: “Items of interest will be located, identified, monitored, and remotely controlled through technologies such as radio-frequency identification, sensor networks, tiny embedded servers, and energy harvesters.[...]In practice, these technologies could lead to rapid integration of data from closed societies and provide near-continuous, persistent monitoring of virtually anywhere we choose.”

Whether Petraeus’ own downfall as a result of FBI eavesdropping on private emails is part of a plan to warn future would-be whistleblowers, poetic justice, or mere irony, it is nonetheless instructive. When everything that anyone does is tracked, traced and databased at all times, from our dishwasher usage to our television viewing to our toilet flushes, no one will be able to avoid the gaze of the state, regardless of whether or not they have “something to hide.”

As ITWorld’s Kevin Fogarty observed, if J. Edgar Hoover were alive he would die of jealousy at the technologies available to the would-be Big Brothers of today.

As nightmarish as this seems, the possibilities for tyrannical misappropriation of this technology are even worse. Given that networked appliances allow for remote access, smart technology actually raises the specter that governments and corporations will be able to control the items in your own home.

Here again, as much as this sounds like Buck Rogers fantasy or Orwellian nightmare, it is in fact mundane reality. As far back as 2008, California lawmakers were already tabling legislation that would mandate the installation of smart technologies and allow governmental bodies to automatically adjust homeowners’ thermostats up or down to conserve energy at peak usage times. The stark truth is that any appliance can be turned on or off, adjusted, or otherwise manipulated by anyone with access to the network remotely, including your own car.

Most worrying of all, whether or not we want to use these technologies, the average person is being left with little choice. More and more of the appliances and household goods we use have these technologies embedded by default, and now, thanks to the so-called “smart” meters that are increasingly being installed in people’s homes without their knowledge or consent, that choice is being removed entirely.

Thankfully, the situation is not hopeless. As Josh Del Sol, the filmmaker behind Take Back Your Power notes, there are specific steps that people can take to stop smart meters being installed in their homes, and that communities can take to stop them being installed at all.

Make no mistake, the fight against “smart” technologies is going to be an uphill one. For a population that understands little outside of the realm of bread and circus entertainment, explaining why anything with the word “smart” in front of it may be a bad thing will be challenge enough. But hopefully, as films like Take Back Your Power and other exposes begin to gain traction with the public, we can expose this “smart” technology for the stupidity that it is.

Category : Videos | Blog