In June 2013, The Art of Not Being Governed held a BEYOND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE essay contest that asked writers to use as many words as possible from the Homeland Security Keyword Watch List.  This essay was submitted by guest-author Nancy Forbush.

Backtoyou was an impressive man by anybody’s standards. He was a descendent of Cain and Abel; which one he never was certain. Backtoyou believed in peaceful demonstrations and was a bona fide follower of Gandhi with a penchant for activism. His words were weapons grade material; enriched with nuclear wisdom that never failed to hit their target. He placed his messages in well-traveled venues; they were like improvised explosive devises to the minds of his followers.


His spammer attacks and phishing methods were phreaking awesome and he’d been a recruitment target of various radicals, such as; (Al Queda, Abu Sayyaf, Al-Shabaub, Hamas, the FARC, AQAP, AQIM, TIP, the IRA, the ETA, the Baraque Separatist, Hezbollah, the Tamil Tigers, the PLF, the PLO, China, the Taliban and various home grown nationalists from Yemen Somalia and Nigeria) to help assist them in with various organization efforts; especially since the terror attacks against Iraq and Afghanistan.

Backtoyou was a peaceful man however and respectfully declined their offers. He was not into Fundamentalism nor was he an Islamist. Not being in any way a religious zealot he stayed clear of anything that was concerned with Jihad. Extremism wasn’t his bag nor did he touch an illegal substance and he stayed clear of any plot that might cause his adversaries to become suspicious. He was a hacker and known to associate with a few pirates as well as the most intelligent scammers… but he had his principles.

He was not a fan of violent terrorism of any fashion and believed the effort to undermine Iran and Pakistan was motivated by greed and the need to control resources. He was convinced that to attack another country was not a means to win peace but to extend the reach of corporate terror. Brute force was seen by Backtoyou as a disaster of tsunami proportions and he believed violent uprisings should have their own warning codes similar to those at the Tsunami Warning Center.

Uprising could be classified according to severity; he jokingly referred to unrest by order of magnitude; there were the little skirmishes he thought of as extreme weather such as; sleet, hail, ice, snow, blizzards, a tremor, a minor storm, a brush fire, or a wildfire; and the more dramatic uprisings he likened to a hurricane, tornado, twister, temblor, earthquake, avalanche, flood, typhoon or a Forest fire. With such an emergency center if you were stranded or stuck you could reach out for help and would be sure to find a Shelter-in-place. Backtoyou was a practical man.

Backtoyou believed in the conventional weapon of reason. His idea of fun was what governments refer to as a cyber-attack. Cyber terror was his specialty and he planted Malware wherever it could do the most damage. The well-placed Virus or Trojan was to him a delight and a Kevlogger was his greatest weapon to destabilize cyber security. Creating instances of DDOS and Denial of service were child’s play to Backtoyou. He was well acquainted with the computer gaming system and Agro was a favorite. He had created a Mysql injection worksheet that was a work of art and he had single- handedly composed the Conflicker worm that targeted Windows Operating systems. (He never admitted it publicly) He now had botnet zombie army that was capable of monitoring most of his enemies. He had installed a rootkit scanner to avoid becoming a victim of his opponent’s designs. He was not only a practical man; he was resourceful and cunning. His weapons cache was a veritable smorgasbord of nerd delight. The weapons he used were akin to placing a virtual car bomb in an enemy’s domain or placing a suicide bomber in the midst of their servers. Brute forcing the cyber world was his specialty.

Backtoyou lived on a mountain, not far off the Interstate and he was proud of the personal Cyber Command center he had created. He had installed his own off-the-grid system after encountering a few natural disasters that kept him from his business. He had experienced brown outs, power outages, damage from mudslide, erosion, lightening and an unforeseen energy burst and they had been a warning to him. What a relief it was to him to install a private power grid and find some closure from the worry and stress. He was always on the watch for the latest advances in technology. He didn’t spend much time on Social Media; although he was a resourceful man he wasn’t exactly a chatty fellow; although he was always the first guy on the mountain to come to the aid of a neighbor. He was actually a source of pride to some on the mountain as he provided them with their own personal Emergency Broadcast System.

Ah but Backtoyou had a wife; one who grew increasingly dissatisfied with his preoccupation for creating cyber confusion and their problem came to a crest late one night while Bactoyou fiddled with his computer machinations. Fiddling was the topic and the argument that ensued was no minor skirmish; Bactoyou found his wife was a veritable environmental terrorist living in his castle. Her form of Eco terrorism is the stuff that legends are made of; men are merely grown boys in larger bodies and any woman given to scolding can make a grown man shiver in his boots. Hell hath no fury like a woman’s scorn! Her words hit him like a chemical or biological weapon; sweat poured from every pour, his stomach did cartwheels while her words fell like blisters upon his unsuspecting head. Ammonium nitrate would create a small explosion next to the fury of Backtoyou’s wife’s words. She called him 2600 different shades of grey that you wouldn’t repeat in public if you were wise….and then the final blow was tossed; he knew he was defenseless in the face of this dirty bomb. Her final volley was successful. For a time Backtoyou had held his own against the storm, but he knew that he had lost the battle and should put his toys away and go to bed when he wife used the words that all men dread (or hope to hear…lol); “If you don’t come to bed right this minute; I’m going home to my mother!”

He knew then that one more moment and he would be certain to have crossed over the acceptable line of civil disobedience.