Filmmaker Laura Poitras wrote an op-ed for the New York Times to accompany her new mini-documentary of the NSA's "Stellar Wind" domestic spying program. The documentary, entitled The Program, centers around testimony from William Binney, an NSA whistle-blower who claims to be the godfather of the program. As I reported this past spring, Binney claims that Stellar Wind is an aberration of a data mining program that he spearheaded and is used to create profiles on every living person in the United States. In the film, Binney explains the mechanics of Stellar Wind and recounts the harassment by federal agents he has experienced as a result of speaking out about the program.
In her op-ed, Poitras, who has produced a number of films exposing infringements of civil liberties under the guise of national security, recounts the numerous instances of harassment she has experienced at the hands of federal agents: She's been detained at the border on numerous occasions, she's had her luggage rummaged through countless times at the airport, and she's even been denied entry to the country by Customs.
Given Binney's testimony, Poitras's op-ed, and the recent detention of Brandon Raub, I'm starting to build a profile of my own: a totalitarian federal government.