Do androids dream of electric sheeple?

In an initiative Philip K. D!ck could have penned describing some near future technocratic dystopia… U.S. Information Czar Cass Sunstein seems to have gotten his wish in having paid U.S. agents fight dissent on forums, blogs, and social networking sites.

Shills have existed alongside street vendors and carnival barkers for as long as wares have been hocked in open air markets… in other words…as long as society has been around. Shills are the confidence men on the streets… pretending to be satisfied patrons in order to attract new customers. In reality… they are business associates with the purveyors they feign for.

We’re all familiar with star endorsements. We accept it… and rarely are persuaded by it because we know they are being compensated for their praise. There is nothing really troubling or new about that. If the paid endorsement isn’t acknowledged by the parties… then that should cast doubt on the claims being made.

With this in mind… Why would the U.S. government feel the need to employ government shills… or “sockpuppets”… to garner public opinion? Why does the federal government feel it necessary to have covert agents pretending to be Joe Public arguing with critics of policy or official accountings?

Going beyond the call of duty… the U.S. Air Force has issued a solicitation…[Solicitation Number: RTB220610]… to develop software that gives users access to at least ten unique online personae with individual IP addresses and background information… even including mock emails… that would support any backstory the user wishes to establish and that would appear genuine and geographically consistent in regards to the participant forum.

Do you think this technology will only be employed abroad? How do you feel about clandestine intelligence agents shilling for Uncle Sam? Is it ethical? Is it a necessary evil in times of informational warfare?

“No army can withstand the strength of an idea whose time has come” - Victor Hugo

My opion…this ploy will ultimately backfire.

Answer #2

Now that I’ve read this; of course it’s not just for international use.

Case in point: all the state department video that was released and aired over Iraq & similar that was produced by our government, when at the time, it was said to have come from “reputable journalists”….sad really.

Americans, by & large, are getting hosed. I wish I could come up with an alternative, but sadly, I think we’re screwed with generational wealth keeping those in power where they are, without any real “recourse” for normal citizens.

I’ve got the under secretary of state, Mr. Blake’s, business card and email address in my wallet even right now - I meet him in Maldives, he’s a huge guy. Even with that, can I shift the course of US policy? Nope.

My father in law has met the Clintons, and the governor of California, etc, etc….that & five bucks gets me my favorite drink at starbucks ;)

Answer #3

Maybe we deserve to get hosed? “Fool me once… shame on you… fool me twice… shame on me”… I think is how it goes… though i may need to consult Bush Jr. on that one. Again… you are the only person at the site willing to consider my flights of fancy. When we are unwilling to even have a discourse on the subject of government malfeasance… we can’t be surprised with how far government is willing to push the limits in perfidy. I suppose this is how it goes though. The truth will eventually be known and if I ultimately end up being mistaken… I can still say that I did my part to bring it to light. Thanks for the answer… and take advantage of that five dollar macchiato while you can… but… of course… hyperinflation warnings are just silly conspiracy yarns.

Answer #4

Here’s a new video which offers proof that the US military has used sock-puppets to confront critics here in America:

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