I hereby declare myself independent

7 Oct

spyflagReceived my new passport. Comes with an radio frequency id (RFID) chip in it. The US State Department say I will reaps loads of benefits from that, including (of course) greater security. Mere window dressing on the increased powers of a surveillance state. Now it’s just easier to track the comings and goings of their own law-abiding citizens.

Jeff Koons must have been the architect of the US Embassy in Oslo. With its paranoid-brutalist style it looks just like a prison and instantly reveals the truth of any security based argument. Outward facing security will always turn inward against you, against your liberty.

Rather unsubtly, the passport ugly eagle blazoned chip holder arrived in the mail with multiple documents stating that “All U.S citizens must report and pay tax on their worldwide income, even if they live abroad”.

If you live full-time abroad and make less than USD 92 000 the United States will normally graciously waive your tax payment, though entirely at their discretion. But they do require you to file.

I left. I’m happy to pay taxes, where I live. My home country ranks at the top of the Human Development Index. I get 5 weeks yearly of paid vacation, by law. Norway provides quality, affordable health care to all its residents. These things are not true of the US.

I receive no tangible benefit from the United States. I have some lovely family there, but that’s it. In my one, brilliant career move ever, I left the IT industry in California in 2003 for Europe. Read this very sad article: Will California become America’s first failed state?

Yes I have an American passport chipholder but would be happy to get rid of it.

The US have shredded their constitutionally guaranteed liberties, one by one. I got arrested for sitting in the middle of a street the day they decided to put their Strangelovian neoconservative wet dream into action in Iraq. Freedom of assembly? Ha! Now the US Department of Defense have rebranded protesting as “low level terrorism activity”.

Ah, but the temple merchants who have a direct line to Jesus say you’ll still prevail against tyranny as long as you can keep the holy handgun of Antioch and the assault rifle of Assyria they sold you. Do realize that in terms of civil liberties you are bloody trunk with no arms and perhaps one leg (that you’ll probably just kill a family member with). You stand as much of a chance against the arbitrary abuse of power as Monty Python’s black knight.

Particularly when you’ve allowed them to tag you with an RFID chip.

The Europeans who drew up your constitution were not convinced they had nothing to fear of “the good people“. They wanted guarantees. Checks and balances. Lots of them. All kinds of protections, including against illegal search and seizure.

They also revolted against taxation without representation. Great sense of history and irony there, America: I live on another continent, I get nothing from you and you still want me to file taxes.

Fuck you. I hereby declare myself independent. Throwing down the shackles of oppression. The RFID chip dies at dawn in the microwave oven.

Image Source: http://www.aclu.org/

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