“Those who corrupt the public mind are just as evil as those who steal from the public purse.”—Adlai Stevenson, 23rd Vice President of the United States

If you’ve been caught up in the circus that is the presidential election, you’ve likely missed the latest news about all the ways in which the government continues to erode our freedoms, undermine our sovereignty, abuse our trust, invade our homes, invade our privacy, destroy our property, hijack our bank accounts, and generally render itself above the law.

Then again, this is all par for the course from a militaristic government that is armed to the teeth, wages war against its own people, imprisons its citizens for profit, marches in lockstep with the corporate elite, and treats human beings as little more than cattle to be branded, bought, sold and butchered.

The following incidents constitute a typical week in the life of the American police state.

Not content with merely spying on our emails and phone calls, the NSA wants to spy on thermostats, refrigerators, and pacemakers.

Reinforcing fears about how easily surveillance technology can be abused by government officials, local police in California are using money acquired through asset forfeiture to buy surveillance equipment that was then used to blackmail city council members.

Small-town police departments continue to militarize their forces, acquiring military equipment such as BearCat armored vehicles and SWAT teams at an alarming rate.

According to the Government Accountability Office, the majority of people in the government’s criminal face-recognition database have never committed a crime.

The private prison business is booming, signaling a profitable windfall for investors and a death knell for any American unfortunate enough to run afoul of the many laws criminalizing otherwise legitimate behavior such as growing a garden on one’s front lawn or hosting a Bible study in one’s backyard.

In fact, one Florida couple recently sued their town council after being threatened with finesunder a law banning front-yard gardens.

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that as long as the government shows “good faith,” it can search your digital files as much as it wants.

The FBI and other government agencies have been hiding cameras in city utility poles in order to carry out warrantless, covert surveillance on Americans.

The USDA and EPA have been using SWAT teams to conduct raids on raw milk producers, beekeepers, and lemon growers, among others.

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that Americans have no expectation of privacy when it comes to credit card magnetic strips. Translation: swiping a credit card to determine its legitimacy is not a search under the Fourth Amendment.

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