There are many consistent themes of the Obama administration, but one of the more troubling ones is the duplication of competencies. Just how many agencies do we need creating their own cybersecurity mandates? Yes, yes, Department of Energy wants to feel important. Who cares? Get this stuff under one roof. NSA, GSA, DHS, FCC, I don’t care. Pick one.
So. Somebody hacked into the computer of one of CBS’s best-known investigative journalists. CBS News announced Friday that correspondent Sharyl Attkisson’s computer was hacked by “an unauthorized, external, unknown party on multiple occasions,” confirming Attkisson’s previous revelation of the hacking. CBS News spokeswoman Sonya McNair said that a cybersecurity firm hired by CBS News “has determined through forensic analysis” that “Attkisson’s computer was accessed by | Read More »
Fifty-seven percent (57%) of voters nationwide believe it is likely the NSA data will be used by other government agencies to harass political opponents. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that just 30% consider it unlikely and 14% are not sure.
Then, on top of the obvious epistemological blindness of building a security state with open borders, they make it worse by knowingly and deliberately unleashing the IRS on their political opponents like an underfed pack of Dobermans. All of this makes the true values of the current administration apparent. Keeping you down is far more important than keeping you secure.
How is the great crusade to bring accountability to the IRS coming along? According to Eliana Johnson at National Review, the Director of Rulings and Agreements, Holly Paz, just became “the fifth Washington D.C.-based IRS official involved in the current scandal to leave her position.” According to the House Oversight Committee, Paz was involved in an internal IRS investigation that in May 2012 concluded that the agency had been | Read More »
It is long held that the government can look at the outside of an envelope as it passes through the postal system. The government can see who is sending a letter, to whom it is being sent, and from which postal location the letter was mailed. The government, in the twenty-first century, is trying to come to terms with a society that transmits information differently | Read More »
Let us imagine a world where the following occurred*: 2008 – 2013: Barack Obama accepts public financing for the election, promptly closes Gitmo, and rigorously avoids raising taxes of any kind on the middle class. Just to not-really-randomly pick three of his campaign promises. 2009: Barack Obama secures the formal appointment of Inspector Generals at Defense, Homeland Security, Interior, Labor, State, and the Agency for | Read More »
Within hours of the disclosure that the federal authorities routinely collect data on phone calls Americans make, regardless of whether they have any bearing on a counterterrorism investigation, the Obama administration issued the same platitude it has offered every time President Obama has been caught overreaching in the use of his powers: Terrorists are a real menace and you should just trust us to deal with them because we have internal mechanisms (that we are not going to tell you about) to make sure we do not violate your rights.
Those reassurances have never been persuasive — whether on secret warrants to scoop up a news agency’s phone records or secret orders to kill an American suspected of terrorism — especially coming from a president who once promised transparency and accountability. The administration has now lost all credibility.
Via Ed Driscoll comes something I hadn’t considered: Susan Rice as National Security Advisor means that Barack Obama thinks that he can claim executive privilege to keep her from testifying. A Google News search on ["Susan Rice" "executive privilege"] (typed exactly as indicated between brackets) returns two stories. The main one is at Fox News, where K.T. McFarland pointed out that President Obama, now that | Read More »
Normally in Tech at Night I try to find the big trends that can be pieced together from all the little stories we see going on. Right now the trend continues to be that Republicans are trying to make American Internet access even better than it already is, while the rest of the world is going in the wrong direction.
This afternoon President Obama will announce that Tom Donilon will be departing as National Security Adviser in early July and will be succeeded by United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice. The National Security Adviser position is Rice’s reward for appearing on five Sunday news shows on September 16, 2012 and misleading the American people — claiming the vicious attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi that | Read More »
This is what we in the business call a hint . Over the course of four and a half years, no other member of President Obama’s cabinet has been at the center of so many polarizing episodes or the target of so much criticism. While the White House publicly backed Mr. Holder as he tried to smooth over the latest uproar amid new speculation about | Read More »
Eyebrows have been raised by the announcement that US Attorney Bill Killian, in the company of FBI Special Agent in Charge Kenneth Moore, will soon address a Muslim council in Tennessee about “how civil rights can be violated by those who post inflammatory documents targeted at Muslims on social media.” “This is an educational effort with civil rights laws as they play into freedom of | Read More »
President Obama took a break from the scandals swirling around his Administration on Wednesday by jetting off to Chicago, where the sort of politics practiced by Obama’s IRS are standard procedure. There he held a few fundraisers, including a posh reception with fat-cat donors where tickets ran from $10,000 to over $32,000 apiece. “We’ve got a politics that’s stuck right now,” this great Man of | Read More »
Perhaps this old song from John Lennon played in President Obama’s head as he gave his recent speech at The National Defense University. It’s decent yet misguided naivete went through mine as I read about The President’s views on our war against Reactionary Islamic Fundamentalism.
Brett Easton Ellis begins his first novel Less Than Zero with a seeming Red Herring. Blair tells Clay (the anti-heroic protagonist) that “People are afraid to merge on freeways in Los Angeles.” This, of course, symbolizes the empty, existential ennui that Easton-Ellis posited as a monster poised to devour the children of 1980’s America. I sometimes feel that I live in an era marked by that monster’s triumphant conquest over what was once a great American Nation. I find myself forced against my will to believe the nation I once loved has succumbed to what I once described as “The Evil of The Blur.” I was born here and grew up here. I served in my nation’s armed forces of my own free will. I wasn’t exactly Rambo and never claim to be. However, I loved America without condition. Now I only remain patriotic to the memory and hope in all my delusional vanity that this is what we can again become. Now keep that in mind as you imagine what Osama Bin Laden thought about America on a typical day.