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Orwell & Ed: Snowden saga shows the one thing “1984″ missed

“There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment… but they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to.” (George Orwell, "Nineteen Eighty-Four," 1949)

We can imagine Orwell, hands in pockets, strolling across the vast glinting car park of the NSA headquarters at Fort Meade, Maryland. He adjusts his Ray Bans to survey two massive blocks of black plate glass set in a square. He takes out his journal and writes that Fort Meade reminds him of a giant version of the Kaaba shrine in Mecca. He doesn’t know why he knows this but likes the thought. Then he sees Winston Smith leaving the building to shuffle (varicose veins) his way across the lines of baking autos before reaching the far corner and Julia, who waits. They sit in the battered Nissan. Being afraid to speak, they whisper.

Orwell, you should be living at this hour.

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