ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Friday, January 20, 2006

More on the Google Subpoena

Looked a little more closely at some of the available information, which is not much at this point, but I think the Feebs did not ask for the IPs of the persons making the searches. That shows some modicum of common sense. However, I am not at all assured by that fact alone. My "inner-Libertarian" is really not amused by this.

What is to stop them from asking for the IPs?

Truth be known, there probably is no legal protection here. As asked in reference to the NSA surveillances, what expectation of privacy does anyone have on the internet? If you have a lick of sense, not much.

But that is not the issue. Just because the government can do something does not mean they should do something. Some things are just a violation of our values and ways of doing things. Should I not be able to do a search without thinking the government is, or might be, watching?

They could do this, data mine as it were, just in the hopes that they might find someone doing something wrong without having had a hint that person was doing something wrong before they snooped.

Folks, that bothers me. That bothers me a lot. And that they do this in the name of "protecting children" only makes it all the more reprehensible.

Patriotism used to be the last refuge of the scoundrel.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: MontereyJohn

Comments (2)
St Wendeler said...

I'm not sure that my libertarian rankles are up on this issue, given the fat that they're looking (at this point) for patterns and frequencies of specific searches. This is similar to the NSA looking at "chatter" in the telecommunications system to see if there are any potential attacks coming. Since they are not focusing on individuals, but rather patterns of communications, it's difficult for one to assert that one's privacy was infringed. Is the government watching the search term you enter in google? No... What they're doing is something more similar to what CurrentTv does with google, although confined to the specific arena of pornography.

Like the NSA surveillance issue, if the Congress feels that more oversight is required, bully for them. However, in this case, it seems that the FBI is having problems getting the cooperation of Google in the first, place which isn't surprising.

No doubt the Left will try and comingle these two issues as Chimpy W. McBushitler's infringement into private matters (while not blushing about their promotion of government intrusion into decisions regarding nutrition, lifestyle, education, thought, etc, etc, ad infinitum).

Bob Barr is not right... I understand the slippery slope argument, but that is the least grounded basis for any argument, since it can be employed for any issue.

If you want to talk about infringement of privacy, take up the mantle of the entrapped child pornographer or pedophile who is tracked and targeted by the Feds through the use of internet technology. This story from 2002 is very enlightening... For some reason, I doubt that you'll be as quick to jump to their defense on Libertarian grounds... because you appropriately recognize that there is a need to balance the possible infringement of privacy against the destruction that a pedophile causes in our society. As I said, oversight is key... but I don't see Big Brother anywhere in this Google request.

49erDweet said...

Sorry, John, but your law school upbringing is showing through on this. Your "What is to stop them from asking for the IPs?" sounds as if it is straight out of the Daily Kos.

This is impersonal background data concerning a process, not an individual. Pretend some of your professors weren't as wise as you once thought. Think about this again. Any scenario of potential harm has to be so intricate and delicately formed as to be beyond the possibility of rational belief.