Posts Tagged ‘Woody Allen’

“I believe there is something out there watching us. Unfortunately, it’s the government.”
Woody Allen

How much do you think our government monitors our daily lives? How much power do you feel our government should have over us? When the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (USA PATRIOT ACT) was passed many people were freaking out because this new bill allowed police to search your home or car without your consent, wire tap your phone, go through your financial records, and monitor e-mails all without a warrant. In the few cases which required a warrant the authorities could obtain a warrant from any judge in any state, thus authorities can cherry pick judges they know will make decisions in their favor. This means that if I live in Minnesota and the authorities want to begin monitoring me they can obtain a warrant from South Carolina and in order for me to fight this I would have to appear in a South Carolina court! Many people believed this act is pushing our society closer to a “big brother” state. I suffer from paranoia from time-to-time so naturally I am not in favor of this act, but the rational side of me says “if I am not doing anything wrong then who cares?”

The following is my paranoid point of view: I believe the government orchestrated the September 11th attacks to allow the government to gain more control over our daily lives, and create justifications to invade Iraq and Afghanistan. The people in power had everything to gain if we went to war, and these people made billions of dollars off government contracts. A perfect example of this is Halliburton, which made billions off such contracts, and as we all know Dick Cheney is CEO of this company. They were so crooked many of the contracts they received were listed as no-bid contracts. The United States has transformed into a tyrannical government, and this bill allows them to monitor all citizens to ensure we are staying in line.

In the beginning our country was based on the people having the majority of the power then the state, and finally the federal government. Over time there has been a shift where the federal government now holds supreme power over its states and citizens. Having the ability to monitor everything a person does is in direct violation of our fourth amendment. I do not like the idea of my personal life being violated by anyone, let alone the American government. It is my opinion that the government holds way too much power over the people, and this act just gives them more power.

The following is my rational side: The September 11th attacks were perpetrated by a large organized terrorist unit aimed at shaking our country into panic, thus showing us we are not safe in our own boarders. The government in response to this terrible attack realized they needed to keep a closer eye on what is going on in this country to prevent another attack. The PATRIOT ACT was not put into place to monitor normal citizens just those who the government perceives as a possible threat to national security. This act also gives local authorities the ability to fight crime in a better way. This act was put into place to protect us, not to spy on us.

So there are my two view points. There are some days I am paranoid and some days I am rational. Even on my rational days I still feel like this whole thing was perpetrated by our government. I am not a huge fan of the PATRIOT ACT. I think it gives the government more liberties to invade on our privacy. The Act dramatically reduced restrictions on law enforcement agencies’ ability to search telephone, e-mail communications, medical, financial, and other records. I think if the authorities charged to protect our country are on point they can stop any future attacks, without needing this act. It is my understanding the ball was dropped on the September 11th attacks. Intel was ignored causing the attack to be carried out.

I brought up in this piece that I think the government was behind the September 11th attacks. Even if our government was not directly involved in the attacks I believe they knew the attack was going to happen, but ignored the Intel so the attacks could be carried out. I go back and forth on this conspiracy theory. I know the Bush administration wanted to go to war, but could not gain public support. Even after the attacks not many were in favor of a war without proof this country was directly involved in the attack, because of this the Bush administration lied about weapons of mass destruction to deliver fear into our hearts, thus making war more appealing. I know there was a shit load of money to be made if we went to war, and those in power benefited greatly from this war. I think our government is as devious as they come, and I am prone to think there is an alterative motive behind most things they do. I would really not put anything past them, and I do believe they are capable of doing such a thing. I think this is just another step towards supreme rule over our country. Whether we transform into a socialist or communist state is up for debate, but mark my words either in my life time or my children’s life time our country will change so dramatically it will be a shell of its former self.

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“What if nothing exists and we’re all in somebody’s dream?”
Woody Allen

This manner of thinking has been the center of many of my psychosis throughout life. When I begin to take baby steps further away from what is real. At this point reality and fantasy begin intertwining with one another. When I am dreaming I believe I am awake, and when I am awake I suppose I am dreaming. This gets very complicated because my dreams are so vivid they feel like everything is so real. When I am consumed in this mode of thinking, I get more and more mixed up. Pretty soon I am crossing each reality over and over. In a dream I may be referencing something from when I was awake, and while I am awake I am referencing dreams. This criss-crossing of realities gets awfully confusing.

One (out of many) reoccurrings thought I have been having is if I in my current state exist, or am I just an entity inside of someone’s mind or dream. I am able to battle this frame of thinking with René Descartes “Cogito ergo sum” (I think therefore I am.) If I am able to formulate thought then I cannot be inside someone’s dream because dreams do not have imagery with individual thought. I would think this is far to complex to be a fabrication inside of someone’s mind. This may be possible if I myself am the individual dreaming. If this dreamer is dreaming me as an alter ego to themselves then it would be only natural that I would have thought since this individuals mind is thinking through me in the dream state. My dream self could realistically wake up as a butterfly who had just dreamed of being a human. This is may seem doubtful, but is a very realistic possibility. In thinking I am only establishing that I have thought, but whether this thought constitutes reality could be up for debate. 

Descartes goes on in his book “Meditations on First Philosophy” to say that just because I am able to validate my existence I cannot prove the existence of others. This messes with me because it draws me to believe that reality is something I may never be able to prove. I could very well be in a dream, or I could very well be a memory somewhere in my mind. What I am doing right now feels as real as anything, but is that not so for dreams. When I am dreaming I do not question the reality I am in, unless I am amidst the psychosis I mentioned earlier.

I know or at least I think I can prove I really exist and I am not in someone’s dream by applying cogito ergo sum, but this to may be misleading. The mind is a powerful thing, and who really knows if it can or cannot produce five or five thousand different individual thinking dream people. If this is the case then this concept does not apply, and I have no way of proving whether I could be dreaming, or a fabrication in someone else’s dream. Who knows if as I type this I am actually resting snuggly in my bed? Who knows if you the reader are actually fabrications within my dream?

When I was plagued with these questions as a teenager and young adult I would focus on the mantra “I think therefore I am.” This brought me back to a supposed reality where I was able to find a baseline. Descartes was the first philosopher I read, so I took his writings as philosophical fact. I turned his musings into absolute truth. As I got older and discovered many other view points and the many different possibilities I have a harder and harder time finding absolute truth within this statement. The question whether I actually exist in physical form cannot be proven; therefore I am left with trying to find what is real. I could very well be deceased and I am living in purgatory just reliving my life. Who really knows the absolute truth behind this conundrum? I personally do not think my existence can be proven, and I do not think your existence can be proven either.