Well, it's finally happened, just as we all know it would. We all knew when they started putting up satellites that can look down at the earth's surface with such appalling accuracy, that eventually they would be used to spy on us.
And now it's started. It was announced yesterday that satellites would be used to examine farmer's fields to find out what they are growing. They say that it's in the interests of "accountability", seeing that UK farmers will be in receipt of millions of pounds of taxpayers' money next year in return for not growing the wrong things.
"Accountability" is a dreadful modern buzz-word that may have a real meaning (well, I'm sure it has) but is usually used in the context "we want to check up on you or spy on you or test your children or subject you to a means test or impose a load of bureaucratic paperwork on you and we can do this because we're accountable".
Strange that the powers-that-be are accountable when they need an excuse to interfere in our lives, but not when they can't make the railways work or keep the streets clean and safe or give us the standard of health-care we've paid for … isn't it?
Now that they have given themselves permission to peer down into farmers' back yards and see what they're having for elevenses, who will be next? I can think of lots of uses for this technology. They could …
spy on our gardens and make sure we aren't growing cannabis
spy on our children in the playground and make sure they aren't bullying each other or playing rough games like conkers
spy on us at the beach to make sure we don't go in too deep
spy on us in the street to make sure we aren't killing everyone else by smoking a cigarette
spy on us at home to make sure we aren't using any substances that might harm us
spy on country people to make sure they're killing the little foxy-woxies nicely
spy on us while we drive … oh, no, they already do that
spy on the police to make sure they're spying on the rest of us properly.
Because, of course, they are accountable.
I just wish I knew who they're accountable to. It bloody isn't me.
either on this site or on the World Wide Web.
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