... in reality, schemes like this are positive for society. The only problem would be if they started putting cameras in houses, but nobody has actually done that before, and nobody in their right mind would even try it in a democracy.
Why wouldn't the rhetoric that cameras in public places help prevent and prosecute crime not easily transfer over to "private" places? I would expect that most abuse and a fare share of murders occur in private places. Think of how many murders could be solved (and prevented) if we had cameras in houses. We would completely get rid of meth labs. Obviously the only people who wouldn't want a camera in their house are the ones who want to continue doing these illegal activities. Why should I get to commit crimes just because I put up a lean-to and it is now magically a "private" place.
The concerning thing about 1984 is that it IS a "democratic" society, that is controlled by fear. If I am so scared of crime in public places, why would I not be scared of crime in private places?