Do you remember when they had those pesky little riots in Egypt? Remember, they ran the 30-year leader out of the country?
Do you remember when the fruit seller in Tunisia set himself on fire, sparking riots that led to the banishment of yet another long-time leader? Do I even need to mention Libya?
All these popular uprisings have been spurred on by technically literate, educated younger folks who do not see a future for themselves. They see only greater income disparity, higher food and fuel prices, stagnant wages and unemployment stretching on and on into the future, while the rich just keep getting richer.
I see a parallel in the good ol’ USA… This week, so-called “hacktivists” have temporarily disabled half a dozen Orlando area websites in a coordinated, public campaign. They basically pissed on the mayor’s doorstep. Then they compromised the Orange County Democratic Party computers, posting all kinds of internal data. They posted thousands of credit card numbers from a Tallahassee hotel and claim to have broken into the Florida elections system.
But wait, there’s more! Fox.com, Sony Pictures, Public Broadcasting Service, Arizona PD, IfnraGuard, senate.gov, and the British National Health Service were all compromised and information leaked. Then they took down the CIA website for two hours. The CIA! That’s some brazen shit… And I fully expect more and more and more of this to keep happening.
We’ve got a lot of very smart, very unemployed, very pissed off people in this country right now. They’ve got powerful computers, high-speed internet access and too much time on their hands. If the American economy can not keep some of our brightest programmers productively employed, don’t be surprised when the American economy becomes the target of their programming skills.
“The revolution will not be televised” said Gil Scott-Heron. But it may very well start on a small LCD screen in somebody’s basement, and sooner than we think.