The American government’s uber over-reaching and prying into the business of everyone who lives on the planet, American citizen or not, aka the NSA also devotes considerable time to watching over and collecting financial data. That is when they are not stalking their ex-girlfriends, copying your emails and follow your Twitter streams and Facebook pages.
In fact, the NSA spends so much of its time following everyone’s money that they even have an internal division called “Follow The Money” (FTM).
What kind of money?
Credit transactions specifically.
Thanks to their secret insertion in the Brussels based Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), a network that is used by thousands of banks to send information securely, the NSA is effectively able to monitor the credit transactions of basically anyone. Anywhere.
This means that information on any credit purchase whether it be groceries or stocks, and regardless of whether it takes place in Atlanta, Georgia or Georgia the country, is scooped up and stored indefinitely – for purposes unknown – by the United States government.
Given the growing ease with which people conduct transactions that don’t involve physical cash, or even leaving your house, one should wonder just how much financial data Uncle Sam’s spy network has, and why it feels entitled to it.
What does this all mean?
Hard to say. These days the American government is fairly cagey about its reasons for anything, but on the surface it appears as though the United States government will happily steal whatever information on the finances of ordinary people and financial institutions of other countries that it can’t coerce out of them through extra territorial law making schemes like FATCA.
Whatever is going on, it’s not about taxes.
The very first thing that BUsh did after 9-11 was to go after Money transfer systems, or, the first thing that BUsh fronted was the administration’s attack on Money transfer systems. It was pretty obvious that they had been waiting a long time for something to blow up so as to pass off all of the Money laundering and terrorist-financing propoganda
And they did that quite well, which is why American ex-pats are effectively cut off from using US bank based financial accounts of any kind in addition.
When a person starts looking at the bigger picture, the narratives don’t hold as much water.
So if they can do all of this, why do they need us to file tax or information forms? They already know what they need to know and could just send us a bill.
if you believe in the six-degrees-of-separation theory
given enough data and processing time
the US will be able to prove that we are all linked to terrorism
and everyone is out to get them
The term the NSA likes to use is “hops”. How euphemistic — sounds as innocent as a bunny, doesn’t it. Anyway they allow themselves to take 3 hops from their targets and that’s pretty much all they need to spy on everyone in the USA.
This was on the news a few days ago, so my apologies if it’s posted elsewhere. Canada’s purported to be the launching ground for Bitcoin’s first operational ATMs.
It appears the IRS isn’t the only US agency exploiting (and IMHO, degrading) the Star Trek series. Remember that infamous training video? The chief of the NSA, Gen. Keith Alexander, modelled his plush new headquarters after the bridge of the USS Enterprise. They call it the Information Dominance Center. That pretty much sums up the mindset of these power tripping potentates.
Em, if the mindset is “geek” than yeah. It upsets me a little that I am being attacked by people that in college I might have hung out with – based on their sci-fi obsessions.
@ Yoga Girl
I was among the sci-fi obsessed back in the day. I hate to see the power potentates perverting a much loved genre. It creeps me out to see the word “dominance” on a spy headquarters. I don’t like “compliance” either.
Em, yes, it’s a bit “50 Shades of Greyish” minus the safe words.
@Yoga Girl, LOL!
Sven Giegold now has another motivating to question his divine love for FATCA.
Apparently, he is angry with the US about the EU agreement with the US on Swift transactions. He is quoted as saying: “The agreement on data protection wasn’t worth the paper”, and: “It was naiv for Christ-democrats, liberals and socialists to approve the agreement”.
James has a good post out…
FATCA: a Tool of the Electronic Surveillance State
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