(LifeSiteNews) — In 2007 researchers with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) began to look into using China’s cutting edge technology, mass surveillance capabilities, and top-down government power to control the behavior of Chinese citizens down to the most minute measure.
The scheme would analyze, track, and score every aspect of Chinese citizens’ lives including their spending habits, their care or recklessness in driving, their social media posts, how politely they stood and waited for a train, and how hard they worked.
People could bump up their scores for good behavior, but would lose points for acting in an “untrustworthy” manner as determined by the CCP. High scores could get participants discounts, rewards, and other perks. Low scores would lead to losses of freedom and privileges.
Now, more than halfway through 2021, China’s social credit system is not isolated to East Asia.
Amid a worldwide totalitarian response to a not-so-very lethal virus that originated in Wuhan, China, the communist social credit system has spread like a communicable disease, infecting some of the freest, most democratic western nations in the world.
Those with their finger on the cultural pulse have begun to warn that so-called COVID-19 vaccine passports open the door to a China-style social credit system in an America that is rapidly deteriorating into a technocratic surveillance state.
But what is the Chinese social credit system, and how do mass data collection, privacy violation, censorship, and “cancel culture” in the U.S. compare with it?
According to China expert and Yale Law School graduate Reggie Littlejohn, China’s social credit system is “a surveillance system that gives the CCP total control over every person in the nation.”
In an August 31 webinar, Littlejohn said the system “tracks and integrates” a dizzying array of individual data points.
Among the personal records tracked by the CCP are a person’s “medical history, social media posts, bank accounts, credit cards, shopping history, internet search history, residence, place of employment, criminal history, facial and gait recognition, network of relationships, religious activities… and real-time physical location.”
The program was designed, Business Insider noted, to be ”mandatory and unified across the nation, with each person given their own unique code used to measure their social credit score in real time,” but as yet it remains somewhat fragmented and ostensibly voluntary.
“China’s social credit system is a state-driven program designed to do one thing,” said Samantha Hoffman, non-resident fellow at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute: “to uphold and expand the Chinese Communist Party’s power.”
‘Orwell’s 1984 meets Pavlov’s dogs’
Under the Chinese system, databases containing personal information ranging from medical records to shopping history are managed centrally by China’s economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the court system, and the People’s Bank of China (PBOC).
“The information is fed into a central database and used to issue a ‘social credit score,’” said Littlejohn, who is the founder and president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, an international coalition designed to expose and oppose forced abortion, gendercide, and sexual slavery in China. She is also co-founder of StopVaxPassports.org, whose mission is to expose the dangers of vaccine passports and build a movement to stop them.
“Citizens are rewarded or punished, based on these scores. Those with a high score are able to participate ‘freely’ in society – but they are not really free,” said Littlejohn. “Those with a low score cannot travel, borrow money, may be fired from their jobs, and may be unable to get their children into school.”
According to Business Insider, punishments could also include “throttled internet speeds and flight bans,” which ring eerily similar to a Connecticut university’s decision earlier this year to ban WiFi for students who hadn’t gotten COVID-19 shots, and a former Obama official calling for unvaccinated people to be put on a no-fly list.
Littlejohn said those with very low scores can find themselves deprived of even the most basic necessities.
People the Chinese government say are “untrustworthy,” Littlejohn said, “can be cut off from credit card use, which can be catastrophic in China’s increasingly cashless society.”
In a June 2014 statement, Chinese State Council said the system is designed to “allow the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step.”
“You could see China’s so-called trust plan as Orwell’s 1984 meets Pavlov’s dogs,” wrote Rachel Botsman in a 2017 article for Wired UK. “Act like a good citizen, be rewarded and be made to think you’re having fun.”
Give us convenience or give us death
Just like in China, in the west our personal data isn’t exactly personal.
“It’s worth remembering,” Botsman wrote, “that personal scoring systems have been present in the west for decades.”
We’re already ranked and scored for the things we do or fail to do. We earn a credit score, a college GPA, and performance ratings from work. If we shop or sell online, we earn rankings from Amazon, eBay, Etsy, and Yelp. If we break the law, we rack up a criminal record. Our car insurance company knows our driving history, and our health insurance agency knows our medical records.
In individualized ways, these things affect our ability to get high-paying jobs, pursue additional education, take out loans, get good insurance rates, and more.
While we freely give out information to agencies and companies that request it, we also opt to allow greater surveillance for greater convenience.
We unlock our phones using biometric data like facial recognition or fingerprints to avoid the hassle of typing in a passcode, and we reveal our precise geolocation to use GPS as we travel.
We track our own steps, heart-beats, and sleep cycles with FitBits and iWatches.
Smart homes track when we’re home and when we’re not, and what temperature we like our living space to be.
Car insurance companies like GEICO offer discounts on total costs if users allow their phones to be monitored while they drive.
“We already live in a world of predictive algorithms that determine if we are a threat, a risk, a good citizen and even if we are trustworthy,” wrote Botsman. “We’re getting closer to the Chinese system – the expansion of credit scoring into life scoring – even if we don’t know we are.”
The 2020 election and the COVID-19 pandemic showed Americans where the true power lies.
A handful of unelected billionaires in Silicon Valley showed themselves capable of deplatforming the President of the United States and choking a politically damning story about Joe Biden’s son, while deleting, censoring, and banning qualified voices who spoke out against the prevailing COVID-19 narrative which advocated universal masking, lockdowns, and experimental inoculations as the only way to deal with the pandemic.
Meanwhile the ill-advised riot at the Capitol on January 6 spurred a political witch-hunt which demonized half of the country as potential domestic extremists.
Over the past year a series of actions by Big Tech working seemingly in concert with the liberal establishment have signaled that a centralized system of social credit and top-down dictatorship has made its way to the Land of the Free.
In June, a global Big Tech-founded “counterterrorism” database originally designed to go after radical Islamic terrorists expanded its reach to focus on “far-right” groups including lockdown skeptics and Trump supporters.
Meanwhile the radical Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and online payment company PayPal issued a joint announcement about their new research venture for “combatting racism, hate and extremism.” The ADL has frequently targeted conservative and religious groups which it believes are “hateful” and “conspiratorial.”
Can you believe China implemented and enforces a “social credit score”? How dystopian! Thank goodness we live in the good old U. S. of A., where that sort of th— https://t.co/Es8FbGkVEh
— Michael Knowles (@michaeljknowles) July 26, 2021
Cancel culture has claimed the careers and reputations of many in the public eye. Those who fail to uphold the party line, like The Mandalorian’s Gina Carano, Mumford and Sons banjo player Winston Marshall, and even Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, have found themselves “cancelled” for failing to adhere to the ascendent ideology aligned with Big Tech, Big Business, and Big Government.
But the most critical aspect of the crackdown, and its connection to a comprehensive social credit system, has to do with the roll-out of experimental COVID-19 “vaccines” early this year.
Those who choose not to inject themselves with an experimental drug ostensibly to treat a virus that poses only a tiny risk to most people have found themselves barred from public venues, fired from their jobs, kicked out of college, derided by friends and family, and accused of being selfish, ignorant, or even murderers.
As corporate CEOs, politicians, employers, and public venue operators demand everyone provide proof of vaccination to engage in ordinary life, a sinister China-style tracking mechanism once derided as a conspiracy theory has begun to be implemented in the U.S. and across the world: a so-called vaccine passport.
‘The same totalitarian functionality as used by the Chinese social credit system’
For decades, our data has been spread over a network of carriers, providers, companies, and institutions, none of which communicate with one another unless we allow them to.
Reggie Littlejohn warns that vaccine passports would change all of that.
Universal digital documentation for vaccine status would provide a centralized platform with which to collect and curate all of our personal data, from spending habits and driving records to political opinions.
The data could then be used to determine whether or not we can enjoy freedoms in society.
Citing tech experts, Littlejohn said “the digital platform used by Vaccine Passports can provide the same totalitarian functionality as used by the Chinese ‘Social Credit System.’”
“While it may begin with only carrying digital information regarding whether an individual is vaccinated, the rest of the functionality of the Chinese Social Credit System can be integrated into the ‘Vaccine Passport’ system in a matter of minutes or hours,” she said.
Politicians have begun to signal that the same measures undertaken to “slow the spread” of COVID-19 might be employed to tackle the so-called “climate crisis.”
Could digital documentation platforms developed to facilitate COVID-19 tracking be repurposed to address climate change?
Today your vaccination status, tomorrow your carbon footprint.
A centralized digital platform in the hands of a totalitarian system could mean that access to ordinary life would become contingent upon how well a person toes the party line on a range of political issues from climate change to racial and gender ideology to the whims of the “public health” establishment.
According to Littlejohn, it doesn’t matter much whether vaccine passports are issued by governments or corporations. However they are produced and distributed, “the practical effect will be to provide a platform that, in the wrong hands, could issue in totalitarianism in the United States.”
“Might such ‘Passports’ be used for more sinister purposes, to isolate those with unpopular religious or political beliefs?” Littlejohn posited. “At a minimum, they can be used to deny those who remain unvaccinated constitutionally guaranteed freedoms – potentially among them: speech, worship, assembly and the right to peaceably petition their grievances.”
‘Our bodies are in the domain of the State, and we only have the rights the government gives us, and only if we are compliant’
Under the guise of “health” and “safety,” the ideals of the United States have become almost unrecognizably altered since March 2020.
Instead of honoring individual rights and liberties as intrinsic and fundamentally good, corporate CEOs, political elites, and government bureaucrats have derided Americans for being “selfish” if they dare to show their unmasked faces in public, gather together to celebrate weddings, birthdays, or the Fourth of July, or choose not to get an experimental gene therapy injection.
Those who wield political power apparently no longer recognize rights and freedoms as “unalienable” and God-given the way that Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and George Washington did.
Instead, much like China’s leader Xi Jinping, American political leaders have come to view rights as mere incentives to offer for good behavior or take away for failing to obey the will of the state.
Last month New York mayor Bill DeBlasio said New Yorkers would only be able “to enjoy all that’s good in life” if they obeyed the government directive and got the abortion-tainted COVID-19 injection.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said forcing Americans to show proof of having received a COVID-19 shot to engage in ordinary life “may very well be the path forward.”
Earlier this year Leana Wen, former director of Planned Parenthood and current medical contributor for CNN, warned that the federal government must “tie reopening policy to vaccination status.”
“Because otherwise if everything is reopened, what is the carrot going to be? How are we going to incentivize people to actually get the vaccine?” Wen wanted to know.
“So that’s why the CDC and the Biden administration needs to come out a lot bolder and say, ‘if you’re vaccinated, you can do all these things, here are all these freedoms that you have,’” she said. “Because otherwise people are going to go out and enjoy these freedoms anyway.”
For Wen, Walensky, DeBlasio, and all others who have made similar comments since the roll-out of the experimental inoculations, “freedom” and rights are not intrinsic or unalienable.
To the ghouls in our political establishment, “rights” are merely treats, goodies, “carrots,” to be dangled over the heads of a feeble populace from the generous hands of an all-powerful state.
Writing for the Post Millennial, Libby Emmons argued that “[o]ur rights are not a bargaining chip that the government can withhold to get us to do what they want. Whether the vaccine is or is not the scientifically correct thing to do has absolutely nothing to do with Americans’ right to their God-given, Constitutionally explicated, rights to liberty.”
Inherent, God-given rights cannot be stripped away by any temporal government. At least, that’s what Americans have always firmly believed.
But the CCP, with its authoritarian governance and its liberty-crushing social credit system, does not agree. Nor, increasingly, do our own American leaders.
According to Littlejohn, “the arrogant and officially atheistic CCP” believes rights come from the government, and are anything but “unalienable.”
“Under Communism,” Littlejohn explained, “you only have a right if the government grants it.”
Under such a system, forced experimental inoculation is acceptable because “our bodies are in the domain of the State, and we only have the rights the government gives us, and only if we are compliant.”
Are we doomed to live in a communistic surveillance state?
Last year Americans became righteously angered when they learned that “contact tracers” would order them to quarantine if they came close to a person who had tested positive for COVID-19. After massive backlash, the contact tracing scheme all but withered away.
Will a global vaccine passport scheme go extinct before it robs millions of their civil liberties?
Much of it depends upon us.
While it may seem as though the obstacles presented by a massive overarching scheme to subject citizens to a regime in which their every move is tracked, monitored, and judged by an atheistic superstate, it’s important to see signs of victory across the world, and become emboldened to resist, to refuse, and to speak out.
Despite huge coercive mass vaccination efforts and mandates, nearly a third of American adults have refused to take a single dose of the COVID-19 shots.
In Texas and Florida, governors have banned vaccine passports outright, with even private businesses in those states forbidden to ask patrons for their vaccination status.
Earlier this week California Democrats dropped their plan to impose a statewide vaccine passport scheme throughout the Golden State, with Assemblyman Jim Patterson saying the decision “is a testament to the thousands of calls and emails made in the last couple of days.”
Unpopular laws are doomed to fail, if only the people draw a line in the sand.
‘They can’t arrest all of us’
As Kentucky Senator and physician Rand Paul said in a stirring video last month, “It’s time for us to resist. They can’t arrest all of us.”
“We are at a moment of truth and a crossroads,” Paul said. “Will we allow these people to use fear and propaganda to do further harm to our society, economy, and children? Or will we stand together and say, absolutely not. Not this time. I choose freedom.”
We are at a moment of truth and a crossroads. Will we allow these people to use fear and propaganda to do further harm to our society, economy, and children?
Or will we stand together and say, absolutely not. Not this time. I choose freedom. pic.twitter.com/XrI2tjdAHW
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) August 8, 2021
Now is the time. We must choose freedom.
Reggie Littlejohn ended her comments by calling upon “the President, Congress, State Governors and State Legislatures to take urgent action to preserve freedom in our country” by banning vaccine passports in government and private companies and asking concerned Americans to sign her petition at stopvaxpassports.org.
Here at LifeSite, over a million people have signed a petition against mandatory COVID-19 vaccination.
Now is the time to stand up. Protest with courage. Resist peacefully. Make your voice heard. Do not lose hope. Remember that you are not alone. History remembers those who stand firm in the face of trial, difficulty, and peril.
“We must rise with the occasion,” wrote Abraham Lincoln in 1862. “As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew.”
Lincoln added that we must free ourselves first, “and then we shall save our country.”