If you spend much time poking around in the Twitter-sphere, you’ve probably noticed our name change.
About a month ago, we switched our Twitter handle from @NullifyNSA to @OffNowProject.’
t’s not that we’ve given up on nullifying the NSA through state and local action. Far from it! That still remains a top priority. But the name change does reflect a broader mission we’ve embraced over the last several months.
Our goal is to turn off the entire surveillance state.
It’s a lofty goal indeed, but we are confident that with enough grassroots support from engaged people like you, we can win the battle for our privacy.
The OffNow project started in the fall of 2013, born out of frustration with the foot-dragging in Washington D.C. After all, Sen. Frank Church warned about the NSA way back in the 1970s. After more than 40 years, Congress has failed to do anything about it, and it appears unlikely it ever will. So, we developed a plan to attack the NSA from the state and local level. The idea – deny the spy agency the state and local resources it needs to function, pressuring change from the bottom up. (Read about the OffNow plan HERE.)
That still remains the core of our strategy, but over the last several months, we’ve recognized that the NSA represents just one cog in a vast spy machine that includes state and local players, along with multiple federal agencies. These government bodies work very closely together. The feds fund many state and local surveillance efforts, and in return, reap the reward of information sharing. The feds equip and empower local law enforcement to spy on you, and then tap into the networks they create for their own purposes. That in turn leads to state agencies to cozy up with the feds, begging for the next handout.
It is as incestuous as it is dangerous.
With that in mind, OffNow will expand its efforts in the coming months. This includes working to limit state violations of your privacy by spearheading legislation to end warrantless data collection and location tracking, and placing limits on drone use. Down the road, we also hope to get involved in efforts to limit the use of license plate readers By addressing these issues, and others like them at the state level, we will also thwart federal plans.
The feds need their partnerships. We plan to shove a wedge in between them and ensure that they end.
In addition, you will see more educational material on the broad nature and integration of the surveillance-state, the militarization of state and local law enforcement, and how the federal wars on terror and drugs enable and justify illegal spying.
We have a much bigger vision, and we are very excited about the future. But a bigger vision means more work, and that means we need more help from you!
Please get involved with the OffNow project in your state. Your investment of time and resources are an investment in your privacy!
Mike Maharrey, OffNow executive director