The government doesn't have a "mantra" of "we will protect you". It has an obligation to actually protect its citizens, and, in America, does a pretty good job of it.
The notion that reliance on the government for protection is a brainwashed delusion is one of those conversational signifiers that convince normal people that all this encryption stuff has nothing to do with them.
> It has an obligation to actually protect its citizens
Perhaps you can claim agents acting on behalf of the state have a metaphorical obligation to protect citizens. But they do not have a literal, legal, or contractual obligation to do so in the majority of circumstances:
Of course the government's job is to protect it's people. Even the most libertarian-minded people subscribe to that.
The problem is the government has been leaning on that to expand to things that are of questionable "protection".
Does millimeter-wave scanning protect you? The government sure expects you to believe it does.
What about seizure of property? That will surely protect you from drugs.
Why should we need a warrant for things like accessing somebody's email? Terrorists might be sending emails.
In some way, each of these things might increase our safety, but the cost of that protection is intolerable to me and many others. Unfortunately, most people don't seem to realize any price is being paid.
> people don't seem to realize any price is being paid.
this hit the nail on the head, because the pain of the price isn't felt by the average person _at all_. It is only felt by people at society's margin, who may skirt the law at times.
Now, someone might argue that this is actually a good result, because this will prevent laws from being skirted at all! If, or when some form of revolution is required, that necessarily entails breaking the law (otherwise it wouldn't be a revolution). This means, by slowly seeping such privacy invasion laws into place, its like boiling a frog alive - the frog doesn't even know its being killed.
This is why you have to watch very carefully, any form of censorship, or measures that strip away any sort of right that a citizen is entitled to.
unfortunately, no one is going to care. i hope i will be dead by the time things turn sour (if indeed they do).
People are especially not going to care if we frame our arguments against the TSA as a symptom of the entire system being an illusion used to turn us into docile sheep while providing the illusion of protection.
So how would you frame the discussion? How would you convince people that the security they think they are getting isn't as good as they are being told and the price they are paying is higher than (I think) we should be paying?