Jenny Hendrix writes in today’s Los Angeles Times that the present National Security Administration surveillance scandal has led to an appreciable uptick in sales of George Orwell’s 1984 on Amazon. By appreciable, we’re talking a 5,771% surge as of this morning. At the time Hendrix filed, the totalitarian tome was appearing at No. 4 on Amazon’s list of “Movers and Shakers.” Presently, it’s at No. 18, which isn’t bad for a dystopian tale originally published in 1949 and under the pen-name of Eric Arthur Blair. It’s a good thing Orwell let his own name eventually crest the title, since the lit-crit term “Orwellian” has such a better ring to it than “Blairian,” which sounds like a hair product.
The novel celebrated its 64th anniversary on June 8 just in time for 29-year-old Edward Snowden, a NASA contractor to leak info about the NSA’s “massive collection of data from the phone and Internet records of Americans have given rise to concerns over loss of privacy…” write’s Hendrix. Now, Snowden the target of an international manhunt.
Now, I wouldn’t trust a Millennial-aged contractor with the company kitchen’s microwave let alone give him access to NSA secrets but the dude at least deserves a hat-tip for busting the administration’s merry trodding over your Fourth Amendment right to privacy. Here’s a refresher:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
I’d file our mobile phone calls and Internet interactions under “effects” until we upgrade the lingo in the Constitution. This particular entry has remained the same since 1789. It’s like stumbling across a MySpace blog that went feral in ‘05 – you either wanna delete it or upgrade it. Obviously, I’d prefer upgrading it. Not that I have anything to hide. Well, unless Snowden’s creeping around…
John Oliver has more on the story: