You can’t shake this thought: what if iPhone is now a national security issue? Something the nation needs to take control over, rather than just a product everyone buys.
Is this a rational thought, you wonder? Your mad genius once more divining the truth where others see only happy consumption? And dollar signs.
iPhone is one of the most important devices in people’s lives. It contains a history of their thoughts, images, deeds, work, home life, location, search history, buying history, how they spend each moment, every moment, all of the time.
And basically everyone is made in China.
The country that has publicly declared its intention to create a Internet super-body to help ensure national security. But do their intentions stop at the border? You fear not. Because this is the same country that has declared to the world it intends to take a pro-active role in developing mechanisms for promoting cyber security across the Internet, which you’re not totally sure what that entails but you do know cyber means web and computing and cross-boundaries, so you’re a bit uneasy about their publicly stated intentions what with them being anti-democratic and all.
And then you read that some folks had their iPhones — the iPhones they bought, free and clear — bricked when they took it to a non-sanctioned repair shop. Which seems far worse than that story your read about how the user’s device basically dies if they are ever foolish enough to set the date on their new iPhone to January 1, 1970. What’s up with that?
And what if someone figures out a way to have everyone’s iPhone set to that date?
What if a thousand of us, a million, no, fifty million Americans are on their iPhone and they just shut down? What then? Who do we turn to? China? Probably. Who else is there?
A critical device. Used for emergencies, ussed for communications, for business, that knows our location, that supports a trillion dollar ecosystem, that holds our most personal, private information.
All made in China?
Should we even allow this?
And what happens if a terrorist uses their China-made iPhone? And we need to access what’s inside? Will it be like those terrorists in San Bernardino where the police and security teams apparently can’t access the data because there’s no way to get past the encryption without an encryption backdoor.
And there is no backdoor.
Should there be?
Because even though sometimes you think no backdoors is a good thing, or at least, you want to think this, because you want to be progressive and good and on the side of the user — no Big Brother ever! — you just can’t shake this idea that all the data on that iPhone is already coursing through Apple’s servers, Google’s servers, Amazon’s servers, Visa’s servers, and maybe it’s not so bad if our law enforcement can, with a court order, crack that iPhone open when investigating terrorism or some other heinous crime that we don’t even like to think about.
Or, Jesus, an actual legitimate impending terrorist threat?
And so you wonder again if we should force Apple to build iPhones in America? And then you wonder if this is even possible, if there’s enough money available to support the creation of large-scale, computing-intensive manufacturing. After all, the current president, and with the blessing of Congress, has added $8,000,000,000,000 in debt in just the last 7 years, my God how is that even possible we are such selfish pigs, and that’s money that now can’t *ever* be used to fight terrorism or poverty or climate change — or offer an alternative manufacturing base to the anti-democtatic nation that now makes all our personal computing devices and which considers fundamental Internet activities like using Google or being anonymous a threat to their state.
So you put the thought out of your head. You grab your iPhone and return to your newest favorite game, which you curse for all its in-app purchase requests. Because what’s another worry?