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View Diary: Bill Maher: Reason I Am Willing To Negotiate Some Freedom For Security (57 comments)

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  •  The problem is the collection of data. (12+ / 0-)

    They are collecting too much and the potential for abuse it too great. It is time to end the madness and paranoia of the US security state. The marvels of modern technology do not justify shredding the Constitution and trampling the rights of the people.

    •  Oh good Lord, save us from those who believe... (10+ / 0-)

      ... in "technological fixes", in "making things hard for the gummint".

      You may not realize it but this is exactly what you are putting your faith into: "technological fixes".

      If something is technically possible, it will be done. Sucking out the entire Internet is technically possible. It will be done. It will be done under one guise or another, and if it's not national security, it will be some other pretense and form and is already done by other entities than the NSA, first of them, private corporations for their own interests. And circumstances allowing, all "technological hurdles" set in place by laws will be swept away, just as the antiquated, technologically constrained interception regime that was in place under Clinton was swept away after 9/11.

      So, the problem is not the collection of data itself.

      The problem is a much more fundamental one of democratic control.

      I deal in facts. My friends are few but fast.

      by Farugia on Fri Jul 26, 2013 at 10:56:29 PM PDT

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      •  Save your scare quotes for someone else. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bula, blueoasis, cal2010, JesseCW

        And kindly stop putting words in my mouth. You have no fucking clue who or what I put my faith into so turn your "good lord/gummint" sarcasm right back on your own damned self.

        •  I'll stop dishing out the sarcasm ... (3+ / 0-)

          ... when you stop dishing out the grandiosities :-)

          The marvels of modern technology do not justify shredding the Constitution and trampling the rights of the people.
          C'me on! Do you really believe John Average Q Coder in his cubicle has any notion about shredding the Constitution or not?

          For one Snowden, you have 10,000 of them who only know is that his latest data mining algorithm is freaking awesome.

          But if you want to forge on declaiming great principles that shall animate us all, fine...

          I deal in facts. My friends are few but fast.

          by Farugia on Fri Jul 26, 2013 at 11:37:56 PM PDT

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          •  It's a policy like any other (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            blueoasis, cal2010, JesseCW, jayden

            There is nothing inevitable at all about the U.S. military collecting and saving all of our private communications.

            Plenty of things are technologically possible. The military could install cameras in all of our homes. Gee, that would keep us safe! But we put limits on their power and help craft smarter approaches because that's how it works in a democratic system.

            •  Here's the thing about your comment... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              artmartin
              Plenty of things are technologically possible. The military could install cameras in all of our homes.
              There is no reason for the military to do any such thing because you have done it already.  You didn't do it for any other reason than you wanted the latest technology, but when you bought that technology you also signed away your rights to control the data you created.  Your cable provider, cell provider, game console, operating system manufacturer, and a majority of the applications which run on these devices are all logging your use.  When you bought these items you accepted an End User License Agreement which allows them to collect the data, store the data, mine the data, and sell the data - you have granted these companies these rights without precondition.  As a matter of fact, many of these companies frequently change the terms of these End User Agreements at their discretion (I get at least two or three change notices a month).

              It should also be noted that...

              But we put limits on their power and help craft smarter approaches because that's how it works in a democratic system.
              ... is kind of missing the point.  This is not about "democracy" but more about capitalism.  The US Government is obtaining this data because it exists and is being made available to any entity who wishes to purchase it from the company collecting the data.  You have already given companies (and continue to give new companies) the right to do this to you.

              Looking through the bent backed tulips, To see how the other half lives, Looking through a glass onion - John Lennon and Paul McCartney

              by Hey338Too on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 08:34:08 AM PDT

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              •  You are conflating a couple different things (0+ / 0-)

                As I pointed out in another comment, there's nothing inherently bad about companies collecting and saving data. In fact, any electronic communications service - from email to phone calls to posting in a forum like this - requires them to do so in order for it to work.

                Yes, some companies - not all - also sell user data to other companies for advertising purposes. But it would be wrong to say that every company does this, or that every company treats user data the same way.

                And anyway, it's kind of irrelevant, because this is not how the U.S. government acquires user data. If that was the case, the government wouldn't be relying on laws like the Patriot Act and the FISA Amendments Act. Collection of user data for advertising purposes is an entirely separate issue, which deserves to be debated in its own right.

      •  There has to be a technological fix. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cal2010, JesseCW, blueoasis, jayden

        Otherwise, what's to keep some other country from doing to us what the NSA is doing to us now?  There's a kind of imperialist myopia at work here where we assume that the people scooooooping it all up are always going to be our proud NSA daddy-figures.  If your contention is that there's no preventing it, then we should expect to have every secret made available to every country.

        Our OWN national security makes it important for us as a country to find ways to make our own communications secure.  Not just to protect the NSA's secrets from us, but everybody's internet communications from eveyrbody else.  

        And there are technological fixes that can do that.  For instance, the Internet, the way it is currently configured, is like a big party-line, where messages I send to you actually go to everybody, but with an IP-header which tells everybody else "please ignore this message, it's for Farugia, only."  That's not very secure.  A change to the protocol and the way the backbone works may become necessary.

        "Why should the NSA do that?" you might ask, since they WANT to be able to spy on everybody.  Well, if they really do serve the American people AND the American government, they can serve us both by helping us to have secure communications again.  The safety of the nation could be at risk from that.  That might become a more serious problem than suitcase nukes.

        •  You are correct... the technological fix is to... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          artmartin

          ... disconnect.

          The devices which are providing this data are produced by companies whose sole aim is to sell more technology.  They collect the data because when they know how, when, and why you are using their technology they know what they need to build to sell more of it.  It's just that simple.

          Am I going to disconnect?  Hell no.  I love technology and I have a shitload of it.  Understand what you're buying, think about what the marketing weenies are going to want to know when you use it (because the marketing weenies have a lot of influence in what goes into the software/firmware than runs the devices), and then have fun using your new technology.  It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that a cell phone company is going to want to know where you are for any number of reasons - and that they are going to build their networks and develop software on their phones to make it easy for them to get what they want.

          None of this stuff falls under the "law" of unintended consequences.  These devices and applications are doing exactly what they were designed to do - the fact that they do more than you want them to may be galling to you, but is completely unimportant to them.  The fact that they can sell the data you generate is simply icing on the cake.

          Looking through the bent backed tulips, To see how the other half lives, Looking through a glass onion - John Lennon and Paul McCartney

          by Hey338Too on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 09:14:52 AM PDT

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