–Reporting from San Francisco–
In hindsight, we all should’ve seen this coming. The onrushing descent into a cyberpunk dystopian hellscape would only call for a totally cyberpunk response. I’m referring, of course, to Anonymous Juneteenth’s present to the world better known as #BlueLeaks, a steaming data dump on the face of the pigs that rivals Wikileaks in size and scope. This trove of 269 gigabytes of data from over two hundred law enforcement agencies has everything from emails to policy papers, department records, and, for even more fun, information from agencies including the FBI and Department of Homeland Security via their totally innocuous fusion centres. What makes the matter all the sweeter is, so far, there has been no statement denying the validity of these documents. If anything the main concern from the security ghouls is how much got loose.
At long last, we have the receipts.
It cannot be overstated how spectacularly crooked the dominant US subspecies of pig is. These rotten bastards have gotten away with truly horrible shit over the years in part because the Blue Wall of Silence has refused to budge an inch. Anyone who breaks with this porcine Omerta faces brutal responses, ranging from harassment and professional blacklisting to, at its most extreme, being left to die in an ambush by their fellow hogs. Piggy silence is so pervasive in the US of A that using confiscated drugs to frame innocent people is a matter of course and the Chicago PD successfully got away with running their own private blacksite in city limits where over 7,000 Chicagoans were “disappeared”. Such persistent, Gestapo-levels of deception conceal lots of other obvious yet unverified fuckery like the not-so-secret observation that many American pigs are also Nazi assholes, a rather worrying tendency in a time of cops dismissing modern lynchings.
Anonymous’ timing could not have been better. In any other moment such a massive own would be manageably scandalous. Political leaders would all be putting on their stern, sombre faces to chide the public for daring to do unto their brutes as their brutes have done unto others while formally announcing a grand, bipartisan blue-ribbon committee. The Sunday talkshow circuit would be atwitter with gravely concerned Old White Men discussing how gravely concerning this all is with their elected drinking buddies. Meanwhile their marginally more journalistic flunkies in the news media’s Greek chorus would be busy frightening us with badly edited infographics which all, inevitably, feature a leering Guy Fawkes mask. Six months or even a year later a report would’ve been issued on a holiday weekend in the most stupidly fucking impenetrable jargon possible in hopes that it would quietly go away.
Instead we have, well, 2020. Demonstrations demanding an end to police brutality have swept the nation while Burn Down a Police Precinct soared in the polls ahead of the Biden and Trump campaigns. The Longshore and Autoworker unions both downed tools on Juneteenth, adding their formidable presence to the over five hundred wildcat strikes that have broken out since George Floyd’s execution. The media, in a totally unprecedented display of actual awareness of Things That Happen, has actually started treating the police critically and Doing Journalisms on them. Even as fascist terrorism and threats against the Seattle Autonomous Zone formerly known as CHAZ rear their ugly heads, the movement in the street just keeps on coming. Fresh acts of brutality by the police, a stupidly stubborn tactic reflective of their unshakable addition to violence, have failed to cow the angry mob like they usually do leaving those addled, confused piggies grunting and bellowing in frustration.
If I was in charge of the American policing establishment right now, assuming anyone is that isn’t named Bob Kroll, all of that would have me sweating bullets as I scrambled for some kind of way out. Elected officials are certainly trying but are running headfirst into the boarish obstinacy of the organized crime rackets better known as police unions. What would really push my sweat from lead into urine would be when some poor, overburdened intern who is clearly flinching at the sound of my voice mentions one of the many causes of the Tunisian Revolution of 2011 was WikiLeaks providing the proof in the form of leaked diplomatic cables for President Ben Ali’s rampant corruption. It wouldn’t be long before the same intern squeaks in a tremulous voice that food shortages, which are now rampant stateside, were another significant factor would send me running for the vodka stash. Between the uncountable pile of bodies left in their wake and their simply reptilian disregard for these things called Other People we already know about one can only imagine how much deeper this deranged, fascist rabbit hole goes.
So what, pray tell, is likely to be done with this truckload of gasoline careening towards the inferno that is the United States of America?
Everything now depends on how quickly the information is processed, analysed, and who does it first. It’d be safe to assume that at least some career-minded journalists are pouring through this Monty Haul care of Anonymous, scouring every last email they can for the scoop that will make their careers. There’s also going to be the usual digging, spinning, and lying to expect from the pigs and their buddies in elected office. I’d also imagine that activists, hackers, and Anons are sifting through the digital trash heap for whatever they can find and use. Regardless of who is doing what, it’s a question of when, not if, someone digs up one of the many different land mines buried in the depths of law enforcement email servers.
And just wait until an angry, disillusioned public that’s still mostly on lockdown and glued to their screens gets a load of that fuckery. William Gibson couldn’t have written it better.