Recently, I read a story about a Utah man who voluntarily had several microchips implanted in his hand that allow him to log on and off his computer, unlock doors at work, unlock his car, and share contact information using technology found in “cashless” digital systems like Apple Pay and Google Pay.
While the man in Utah uses his implants as a way to “play tricks” on his friends, a story in the NY Post this past summer told us about thousands of people in Sweden who are having microchips, about the size of a grain of sand, inserted into their hands to carry out their everyday activities and replace credit cards and cash.
According to Swedish scientist Ben Libberton, the growth of microchip implants is inevitable, despite numerous unanswered questions about the risks involved with how chip data will be used and/or shared. “People have shown they’re happy to give up privacy for convenience,” he said. “The chip is very convenient, so could we accept our data being shared very widely before we know the risks?”
Though only a few thousand Swedes have had the chips pioneered by “biotech entrepreneur” and CEO of Biohax International Jowan Österlund implanted, millions are expected to eventually participate.
I’m a Christian, and this kind of thing sounds very “mark of the beast” to me, but it also sounds a lot like the liberty-killing attitude that has dominated Washington over the past few years.
For example, in December 2016 the GOP-controlled Congress passed Kevin and Avonte’s bill behind closed doors, giving the Department of Justice the authority to develop an electronic tracking system to keep tabs on children and the elderly with “mental illnesses” 24/7 using microchip technology.
There were many concerns about how the vague language in the bill would eventually lead to government monitoring of everyone, which prevented it from becoming law at the time. However, in March 2018, the GOP-controlled Congress passed it again and Trump signed it into law under the cover of the Omnibus Spending Act of 2018.
Hiding bad stuff in last minute spending bills? Never saw that one comin’.
Though it failed to pass, the Securing America’s Future Act of 2018 was introduced by then-Representative Bob Goodlatte in January of that year. This 400-page monstrosity required a biometric National ID card be issued to every man, woman, and child in America. The card would be required to hold a job, open a bank account, or get on a plane, and the chip would contain biometric data such as fingerprints and retina scans.
Besides the obvious violation of privacy rights, spying on Americans has recently become the default position of Trump and the GOP to address America’s problem with gun violence, and they have been openly pushing the use of new technologies to help them be better spies.
Trump has suggested the use of home-based technology like Apple Watches, Google Home and Amazon Echo to spy on people in their homes to search for “mentally ill” and potentially “violent” Americans. He’s proposed the development of a phone app to track gun buyers, and with the help of Republicans like Sen. John Cornyn, he wants to develop software to spy on students and track their online activities.
Of course, software and apps are great, but they’re subject to hackers and can get lost, stolen, or used by someone other than the person it was intended for.
Microchip implants on the other hand . . . or should I say “in” the other hand?
David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative.