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Wed May 19, 2021, 11:52 AM

Big Brother IS watching...

I had occasion this morning to start up the electricity in the apartment to which I am moving. Previously, all bills had been in my roommate's name: I have no credit record whatsoever, since the last thing I paid for myself was a car that was paid off in the previous century. I had been living in a boarding house for the past six months while I waited for better digs; this is germane.

As I filled out the form, the phone number I had *before* I moved to the boarding house was already filled in. Now, I never did business with this company before, I am using a different computer from a different location... yet somehow, they knew that phone number had been associated with me. It makes one wonder.

Can't be the chip from my Covid vaccine, because I just got that.

-- Mal

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Response to malthaussen (Original post)

Wed May 19, 2021, 02:04 PM

1. Evidently you haven't done much searching here on the internets. It can be very

illuminating! Here's one website that I also use. Frequently.

https://www.usphonebook.com/

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Response to abqtommy (Reply #1)

Thu May 20, 2021, 10:17 AM

3. The phone number in question was in my roommate's name.

The only way the utility could have associated it with me is if some Internet source sold or otherwise transferred that information to them. Which is not surprising, but I did find it notable.

-- Mal

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Response to malthaussen (Reply #3)

Thu May 20, 2021, 01:36 PM

6. That's interesting. "Of course no corporate entity like Google, Facebook or your local

phone company would sell information like that." snark off

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Response to malthaussen (Original post)

Wed May 19, 2021, 05:14 PM

2. He has been watching here in Germany for a long time

Here, if you go to a bank and want to change a 200 bill or even a 100 bill for smaller purchases, you must register your own bank account number as the one changing the bill.

For decades now, if you want to move, either in or out of Germany, or even to another city within Germany, you must register with the police ("Polizeiliche Anmeldung" ). You must tell them where you are moving from or to. You cannot change your residence without registering it with the authorities. They ALWAYS know where they can find you. I remember the Soviet Jewish comedian Yacov Smirnov, who did funny jokes about the Soviet Union for US TV ads: "In America, you can always find party. In Soviet Union, Party always finds YOU!" This is now reality in the west, not just in the former Warsaw Pact.

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Response to DFW (Reply #2)

Thu May 20, 2021, 10:21 AM

4. Yeah, and to think the US used to criticize other countries for requiring "papers."

Bob Heinlein's character Lazarus Long used to say "when a planet starts to require ID cards, it's time to leave." We don't have that option as yet, alas.

-- Mal

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Response to malthaussen (Reply #4)

Thu May 20, 2021, 12:19 PM

5. When I first registered myself in this manner in Germany

I asked flat out what was the purpose of keeping such tight control on the citizenry? After all, this was not the former East Germany. My case worker said it was a way to keep track of potential criminals, and didn't we do this where I came from? I said no, maybe to the German state, every citizen is a potential criminal, but where I come from, we assume the average citizen is NOT a potential criminal, and therefore requires no such surveillance. This came as a total surprise. The Nazis (NSDAP) and the Socialists (SED) may no longer be in control, but the mentality that prevailed when they were in power has not completely disappeared.

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