Thursday, May 11, 2006

This is the Information Age

HEY! Everyone who is freaking out that the government has access to telephone records and is analyzing calling patterns, WELCOME TO THE COMPUTER AGE. Computers collect and store data. Computers create databases. What do you think the information age means? It means lots and lots and lots of information stored in databases. Some conservatives need to get a grip on their anxieties.
The American Mind: With a little bit of sleep my head is slightly clearer considering the NSA having a record of billions of phone calls made since Sep. 11. I'm not anymore relieved. A database containing all that information without a court order is unacceptable.
Oh Please! Don’t tell me that bloggers don’t check their links and traffic for trends and patterns. If without reading anything, the government looks at your Thursday 10-11 PM hit count by country of ISP origin is that a warrantless search of your private blog?
Reality: One thing has been strikingly absent from the public debate about the terrorist surveillance program run by the National Security Agency: Perspective. While we may not know the full scope of the use of personal information by our intelligence services, we know quite a bit about the routine use and compromise of our most personal data by another little understood and shadowy group.
The new business of business is maximizing opportunity and that means learning from the information gained in day to day transactions. All those grocery store scanners and ATM terminals and online billing payments and internet shopping transactions are not short term RAM cache memory.
Key Point: This has nothing to do with the Fourth Amendment. The case law couldn't be clearer. And those who demand judicial oversight do so not because they want or hope the courts will affirm these intelligence-gathering methods, but because they oppose them and hope some activist court will kill them.
Data analysis is not eavesdropping. Once again the democrats are simply trying to scare the public for political gain. Government can and does abuse power, which is why I believe in limited government, but data analysis of computer records to catch evil people is completely appropriate.