Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.


Privacy Alert!

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,Deep Thoughts,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:06 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

Well, actually, that should be lack of privacy alert…

Now, keep in mind that I’m a fiscal conservative and have always, so far, voted Republican as you read this. Remember that I’m not a screaming liberal that wants to outlaw guns, okay?
Over the Christmas holidays, George W. Bush signed into law the most dangerous bill since the Patriot Act. According to this article on WiredNews, the new Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004 allows the FBI “to obtain records from financial institutions without requiring permission from a judge.” So, basically, that means if you look “funny” to an FBI agent, that agent can get every financial detail of your life, without a search warrant or subpoena and the financial institution supplying the info is not allowed to even tell you. Remind you of anything? Yep, this is the same thing that happened with libraries taken to the next logical step. See? Those librarians were right to be worried. And we should have been, too.
What disturbs me about this is that ol’ George W., whom I voted for in the last election, slipped this by at a time when most folks are pressed for time and might have missed it. Basically, he knew it was a violation of our civil liberties and decided too many people would raise a fuss about it, so he slipped it in on the “down-low”.
So, how does that commercial run? “What’s in your wallet?” No matter what it is, the government can find out about it now. Oh, I know, I know, if I haven’t done anything wrong, what do I have to worry about? Right? Well, how soon before expressing a dissenting view, like mine, is a crime against the State? How long before our “right” to free speech is infringed? Remember, it started small, just like Nazi Germany. First, a few little rights were shaved off. Then, a few more. The next thing they knew, soldiers were showing up to collect guns. Then, they were showing up to collect “enemies of the state”. Is it too late to stop that slide here? I pray to God it is.
Remember this and vote in your next local election. Don’t let all our rights get stolen away in the name of “security”. Remember what Ben Franklin said, “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

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