David Bromwich: Secrecy, Surveillance, and Public Safety
The name of the disorder is paternalism, and its leading symptoms are suppression and secrecy. Paternalism is the ideology proper to a government that treats the governed as children. Of the national security state that we have come to know since 2001, the architect was Dick Cheney, but much of the building was put in place by Barack Obama. This initially puzzling truth has struck anyone who looks at the perpetuation of the offshore prison at Guantanamo, the serial prosecutions of government whistle blowers, the use of the state-secret exception in court cases, the president's secret "killing days" to order drone assassinations, along with other anti-constitutional abuses which the present administration both inherited and extended.