Interesting comment from a friend who visited St Petersburg -- he happended to go on a tour that included the KGB station house there -- The tour guide indicated that you could see Siberia via the back door.
The reality is that we could obliterate hundreds of thousands of people before any electronics other than a few telegraphs existed -- The US civil war cost more lives than any conflict the US has been in before, or since. It seems that rather than just agreeing to disagree about the issues and trying to benevolently govern, the country, and leadership is becoming quite divided over many issues.
Electronic surveilence is a two edged sword like any technology -- It can just as easily be used to harm the inocent, as to stop a tragedy. I myself find that most of my communications I use to work with is under constant attack from a variety of sources. If one does work related to exports to one country -- several others will use any means to stop the work. If one does work for a US company then foriegn companies try and stop the work and so on.
Great piece, Tom. Somebody had to write this, and I am glad you penned it.
We do need a better legal (and political) framework to ensure citizens' privacy. But instead, with little engagement in political and legislative processes, it almost feels like the entire tech industry has already olled over. It is a shame.
Is it too late to take any effective actions? I am not sure.