| 7:54 am on May 5, 2006 (gmt 0)|
>Broadband providers and Internet phone companies will have to pick up the tab for the cost of building in mandatory wiretap access for police surveillance
LMAO......No they won't, the consumer will!
It will show up, after a couple of more court cases, as yet another Federal Charge which they are legally bound to charge!
The phone companies will say "sorry, but, the Goverernment made us do it!". The Consumer will get to pay to be spied upon.
Yet another Nickel & Dime job on the US people. I the government really want to fund these programs they should add the cost to income tax, something very visible for all to see. Sweeping these costs under the carpet is extremely under-hand IMHO.
| 1:55 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|The American Council on Education, which represents 1,800 colleges and universities, estimates that the costs of CALEA compliance could total roughly $7 billion for the entire higher-education community, or a tuition hike of $450 for every student in the nation. |
$8.3 trillion debt, $49 trillion debt in social security IOUs and other hidden debts - and now they want to charge an eavesdropping tax so they can spy on how much Tijuana donkey porn I download in order to safeguard the American public.
I guess I should read that new best seller:
"How to Sell Fear to the American Public for Fun and Profit," by Paul Wolfowitz.
| 2:22 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
You download Tijuana donkey porn? lol :)
| 2:25 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|Yet another Nickel & Dime job on the US people. (...) Sweeping these costs under the carpet is extremely under-hand IMHO. |
Your sentiment is well taken, and it helps reinforce a basic business decision I made a number of years ago.
Maybe others here have had to wrestle with something similar to this...
At the time, I had the opportunity to involve myself and a part of my company in a tangental part the online adult entertainment industry.
I had severe moral reservations about the endeavor, even though the venture was entirely legal.
In the final analysis, I realized that there is scant evidence of a consistent application of "moral values" in government taxation and regulation. Therefore, why should I needlessly hobble my own business by steering clear of potentially immoral (although legal) business ventures?
I'm glad I made that decision. The U.S. is a nation of laws, with a diverse citizenship who have differing views on what is moral and ethical.
No doubt there will be people who would happily pay more in fees to fund widespread wiretapping of every communication any citizen makes regardless of circumstances so as to enhance their feelings of being "safe" in a dangerous world.
So yes, sweeping the costs of government imposed surveillance under the carpet is an underhanded, perhaps even unethical tactic. It possesses, however, the blessing of being legal, and so it will happen.
| 2:46 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
No, I don't actually, but if one did, I'm quite certain that Big Brother would view it as seditious and warrant a big $2 million investigation.
| 3:52 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I still love this country greatly - but with each one of these big brother laws that comes to be, my resentment for moving to the US grows :(
I wonder if, and a what point the benefits will outweight the advantages of US vs. France, for example.
Does anybody know if other countries are actively engaged in these practices proposed here? How about other forms of wire-tapping?
Why don't they just reform cunsumer rights in one big swoop as opposed to taking each right away one-by-one? Oh I see, because then the majority would actually pay attention.
Civil War, anyone?
| 4:05 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
so we have to pay directly for the rope used to hang us?
| 6:16 pm on May 8, 2006 (gmt 0)|
percentages -- You can't tag this onto income taxes because not every person within society uses VOIP or the internet. You have to target the tax to the goods as closely as possible otherwise you'd be creating even more inefficiencies/making more of society worse off than necessary. this is why there are special taxes alloted to all sorts of goods--from cable TV to airline tickets. They only want to charge the people who are gaining from its usage--not all of society.
| 1:14 am on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|You have to target the tax to the goods as closely as possible otherwise you'd be creating even more inefficiencies/making more of society worse off than necessary. |
The same argument used by retired people who vote against school bonds. "I don't have any kids in school. Why should I have to pay."
Many examples of this (il)logic.
Of course, on the other extreme we have tobacco taxed to provide health care for children.
If eavesdropping serves a valid public need, there is no good reason that the public, in general, should not share the burden.
But, that is a big "IF" - i.e. that eavesdropping serves a valid public need.
| 5:42 am on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)|
>percentages -- You can't tag this onto income taxes because not every person within society uses VOIP or the internet.
Sure we can. The US Federal and Local Governments already tax me for many things I don't use....it is called living in a socialist, or socially acceptable environment.
I don't have kids, so why should I pay a huge amount of tax for those that do? I should because it is the decent socially responsible thing to do. I don't mind paying tax, I don't mind paying for other people's kids to get educated, what I do mind is paying "hidden" taxes.
In the interest of security I believe wiretaps are probably necessary. Someone has to pay, although the process should be as cost efficient as possible.
This process is in the interests of security of all, not just those that have VOIP......so, ergo.....all should pay.....and therefore income tax should be the visible mechanism of taxation.
Hidden taxes are evil, the people need to know how their taxes are really being spent.
Congress doesn't want to simplify taxation, simply because it would highlight all of the "pork" that gets those individuals elected ;)
| 10:59 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|Even without the CALEA regulations, police have the legal authority to conduct Internet wiretaps--that's precisely what the FBI's Carnivore system was designed to do. |
Remember Carnivore (2000 - 2005)? It was in action for a couple of years, scraping every packet of every email and IM and request it could get its hands on ... but it sucked ... and now it's gone. And now we have this tax proposal.
Frankly, I'm more comfortable with a tax on TELEcommunications, like VoIP, than I was with Carnivore, which didn't distinguish between phone calls and other types of electronic communications.
Oh .. by the way ... our (American) tax dollars paid for the development of and maintenance of Carnivore to the tune of several million dollars (including Omnivore/Carnivore [packet] and Dragon Net [VoIP]). Those same tax dollars could have been used (more effectively) to fill potholes on our nation's freeways. Now the FBI is using over-the-counter commercial software to do the same job! LOL!
At least this time we are aware that useage taxes might come into play, instead of the FBI secretly installing the other programs at every ISP and secretly taking everyone's tax dollars for their purposes.
| 11:01 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)|
On a side note ... what is it about this government that when they have permission, they have an existing methodology, they have existing tools ... and STILL they end up asking for stuff that costs more and is less-flexible and more secretive than what they already use legally and to some effect?
| 3:14 am on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Lots of interesting points in this thread but I can't help thinking that it's all immaterial.
Isn't law enforcement funded already? National security as well? In the case of the latter you might say heavily OVER funded. What possible logical explanation could there be for putting the cost onto telecommunications companies?
| 12:45 pm on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I'm sorry, but I find this absolutely horrific! It reeks of McCarthyism [en.wikipedia.org] all over again!
The US government is chipping away at your rights and freedoms on a massive scale. Even during McCarthyism, J. Edgar Hoover didn't have a direct line into everyone's homes and businesses and he was the quintessential snoop who believed everyone was a "Commie"!
Good grief! When will the American people put their foot down and scream at the top of their lungs ... "Not in MY country you won't"! I can't believe how easily some people seem to accept this latest of many, egregious and outrageous actions taken by your own government.
There have been civil wars for things such as this!
| 12:53 pm on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|The US government is chipping away at your rights and freedoms on a massive scale. |
And terrorists are chipping away at our right to live. At some point we have to put procedures in place to protect ourselves. Personally, I don't have any issues with this at all. The days of yore are over. The whole rights and freedoms issues are going to need to change if we are going to protect ourselves from what is taking place all around us. Even though the government may not be everything to everyone, I still think we live in the greatest country of them all. But, that is just one man's opinion. ;)
| 2:14 pm on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)|
It's almost time to make the trip north, to Canada. They seem to be less intrusive. Anyone for a game of hockey?
| 8:23 pm on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|Personally, I don't have any issues with this at all. The days of yore are over. |
Actually, it is the days of yore revisited ... and they weren't "the good old days either"!
I understand the need for defense against terrorism, but what some may not appreciate is that there are people like McCarthy in all governments. McCarthy's witch hunts were legendary and ruined the lives of many innocent people. The hunt for the "red devil" was his sole purpose in life. He was a zealot and a despot.
The government is taking absolute power over your communications and absolute power corrupts absolutely! I do not wish to be the harbinger of disaster, but in my opinion, a system such as this will undoubtedly be abused by little tin Gods who lack the ability to know where to draw the line.
For those of us old enough to remember the McCarthy era, this was a very dark period in U.S. history ... and it was not a "proud moment". For those who don't recall or are too young, I suggest you go to the library and read up on both Joseph, Raymond McCarthy, Senator from Wisconsin (1947 to 1957) and John Edgar Hoover, Director of the FBI (1924 to 1972) because this is where things are headed ... once again!
These men were very high ranking officials ... responsible for some of the most despicable deeds in history! Hoover kept scores of "secret files" on various politicians which he then used to threaten them should they try to interfere with his "department". Much of this information was collected through illegal wiretaps. He had several Presidents so afraid of him that they were too terrified to fire him! He had far too much power and information.
Do you seriously trust your government that much? I find this all simply amazing!
I suppose everyone believes that this system will be 100% hacker proof! No bad guys will ever be able to use your own system (intended to protect the American people against terrorism) to their own ends ... right?
It is not the intent of this programme I disagree with, it is the potential for harm such a system can inflict on innocent people ... not to mention the potential for the system to be hacked by God knows who and for God knows what purpose!
| 10:13 pm on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Old (May 6) WSJ article "Court Challenges Rules on Wiretaps For Internet Calls" (read for free May 10 only, apparently):
|A federal appeals court on Friday challenged the Federal Communications Commission's rules making it easier for law-enforcement authorities to wiretap Internet phone calls... |
"Your argument makes no sense," Judge Harry T. Edwards told FCC lawyer Jacob Lewis. "When you go back to the office, have a big chuckle. I'm not missing this. This is ridiculous." At another point, Judge Edwards called the FCC arguments "gobbledygook" and "nonsense."
| 9:33 pm on May 12, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Anyone read the book, "Body of Secrets," by James Bamford?
It is a censored (although not totally) version of the history of the NSA.
I found it to be quite revealing.
| 5:24 am on May 13, 2006 (gmt 0)|
>The whole rights and freedoms issues are going to need to change if we are going to protect ourselves from what is taking place all around us. Even though the government may not be everything to everyone, I still think we live in the greatest country of them all. But, that is just one man's opinion.
Okay, there are at least two of us ;)
Short-term we need controlled security to infiltrate the enemy that lives here with us. It is hard to catch an enemy that maybe your neighbor without what some may seem as "extreme" measures.
There is no explicit "right-to-privacy" granted by the US Constitution. I personally don't have a problem giving up some privacy in the interests of security and knowing that the enemy has most likely already infiltrated my country.
I believe we have to allow the Federal Government to have the tools necessary to do their jobs. If we say no, and another attack occurs you are creating an immediate "scape-goat" for those people.
Give them the length of rope, live with it, if they fail afterwards "hang-'em" with the same rope.
| 8:17 am on May 13, 2006 (gmt 0)|
How is it possible for one to miss that fact that the terrorism issue has been overplayed by the current administration and the media in order to create the necessary fear to push through unnecessary legislation and action?
This threat that we need to spy on ourselves to prevent... It's the one from whom there has been a single solitary attack on US soil, 5 years ago, right? Or is there another one?
Fear is never a good basis for the logic behind a society.