Page 1 of 1

Internet Monitoring

PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2002 8:37 am
by Norman Phillips
The New York Times has an interesting article today on a plan to monitor the entire Internet on a wide basis. Go to ... 0MONI.html

PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2002 8:49 pm
by jflis
leave it to Big Brother (aka Dubbya) to invade *more* of our privacy and other violations of our constitutional rights.

Republicans, Democrats, and all other party affiliates (and those not affiliated with *any* party (bless you!)), let's not let this happen. This is SO close to the "Thought Police", I can't imagine anything more frightening.

Let's nip this in the bud and stop it cold before it grows into something too powerful and invading to stop or control.

And, please, PLEASE, let's not go into the false assumption that this will make us safer (from attacks?) and is thus warranted. If that were true, you could accomplish very similar results by having a governement office that opens and reads everybody's mail before you get it and taps each and every phone, just because...

We would never allow for that to happen. This is no different. There is another problem (at a national level) with this idea. What happens when it is discovered by other governments (even friendly ones) that we have been "monitoring" the internet activity of THEIR private and innocent citizens?? For, you see, there is no U.S. Internet, just the INTERNET. One whole. No distinction from one part to another (with the exception of intranets).

and, geeze, any idea what this would/could cost? Billions, if not trillions... Your tax dollars at abuse


PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2002 10:47 pm
by Bob Holland

PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2002 10:40 am
by Chuck Mower
History is replete with examples of governments that have monitored it's peoples, including the USA. It has never been desireable by americans and I cannot understand it's attractiveness to them now. Perhaps they have forgotten the lessons of the KGB or the SS.

PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2002 9:37 pm
by Norman Phillips
Bob---the first level of snooping would certainly be done electronically, just as the NSA does with radio communications. To create an example, suppose that there was a suspected Al-Qaida cell in Folsom prison. And suppose your child played in the high school orchestra, which had "The Caliph of Bagdad" on its winter program. It would be surprising if the automatic surveillance did not lead to a preliminary conclusion from your posting and your daughter's orchestra program that Bob Holland merited closer investigation of all his correspondence, bank accounts, income tax reports, relatives, etc.

PostPosted: Tue Dec 24, 2002 8:07 am
by jflis
First, to respond to what Bob said, you are right. Frankly, I doubt that GWB has really put a lot of thought into what he is proposing **OR** what he is proposing has been worded so poorly (by his staff or the media), that it is unclear just what he *is* proposing.

In any event... My basic problem stems from two points:
1) the ease of obtaining information (no special equipment, a standard pc and lowspeed modem is more than enough), where as phone taps, for example, require some special equipment (even if you just count the tape recorder...)

2) the ignorance of the populace about what is normal and expected with respect to their rights.

For example, if I wished, I could obtain the IP address of anyone using this forum. I could do it quickly, quietly, without involving the courts and without breaking the law... Now, the ISP that you use (which would be identified by the IP address) can provide me with your name, address, phone, credit card number, credit rating and who knows *what* else. the safety net here is that I have "no need to know" and no court order, so the ISP would refuse my request.

Not so, in regard to what Bush is proposing. the feds would not need to ask, would need no court order and would not need a "need to know". They would simply go-git-it.

That describes #1.

now, for #2...

most people (that i have met) are SO used to so much of their internet activity being "tracked" that they take it for granted that this is the norm and is to be expected. We have been warned not to use our real name in chat rooms (especially for our children) because this information is viewable by outside parties and this could lead to dire consequences. We are uncertain about purchasing online for this very reason. Those in the "know" make certain that all of their purchases occur on secure servers for this very reason (https://...). And we recognize that when we DO buy things, or search for things at search engines that this information is tracked because we suddenly start receiving junk mail on topics that are interesting or familiar to us. So, bottom line is, we are *used* to being snooped on, on the internet.

and we LET it happen!

This Bush idea is simply a deeper step (whether he can DO it or not, is not the question. It's being suggested...), and most people will simply "go along with it" because it just seems like more of what already happenes.

How would you feel if you sent your mother a Christmas card and thanked her for the Ski's that she got you, then two weeks later started to receive ads in your mail box about skiing equipment because some marketeer read your card before your mom did?

How would you feel if you CALLED her on the phone to thank her and has the same result because A.C.M.E. Marketing company was listening in??

HOW IS THIS ANY DIFFERENT? Why do we let them do this to our email and then, in ignorance, see no problem with the feds bringing this up a notch??????

it has NOTHING to do with whether or not they would have the money or resouces to do this. What would your reaction be if they substituted "Postal Mail" or "Telephone" in place of "Internet" in that article? There would be marches on the white house, that's what.


well, 'nuff for now :D sorry, pet peeve (as if you hadn't already noticed... :D )

hugs and a very Merry Christmas to our Christian friends and happy holidays for our non Christian friends.


PostPosted: Tue Dec 24, 2002 10:11 pm
by Bob Holland

PostPosted: Tue Dec 24, 2002 10:45 pm
by Norman Phillips
Bob--what is this protection to which you refer?
I thought someone would point out that there is indeed, a protection from unreasonable search and seizure.

PostPosted: Tue Dec 24, 2002 11:15 pm
by Bob Holland

PostPosted: Wed Dec 25, 2002 5:26 am
by Norman Phillips
Bob-----I first quote here the 4th amendment:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

I constructed an hypothetical example several posts ago, involving the words "Folsom" and "Bagdad". Your daughter's orchestra program is not in your "papers and effects", nor is your posting containing the word "Folsom" your private property. I therefore do not see how the 4th amendment woujld prevent the government from reading those public documents and putting two and two together to get five.

I will quote a relevant section from the NYT article:
An official with a major data services company who has been
briefed on several aspects of the government's plans said
it was hard to see how such capabilities could be provided
to government without the potential for real-time
monitoring, even of individuals.

"Part of monitoring the Internet and doing real-time
analysis is to be able to track incidents while they are
occurring," the official said.

The official compared the system to Carnivore, the Internet
wiretap system used by the F.B.I., saying: "Am I
analogizing this to Carnivore? Absolutely. But in fact,
it's 10 times worse. Carnivore was working on much smaller
feeds and could not scale. This is looking at the whole

PostPosted: Wed Dec 25, 2002 7:51 am
by Pat Heinrich
While you are all thinking about internet monitoring, take a real good look at the Patriot Act. It was pushed through Congress in record time. It's purpose is to give the federal government broad powers to find and investigate potential terrorists. Sounds good, doesnt' it?

BUT, to give the federal government these broad powers, it removes some of our basic rights and freedoms. It even has language that it says it supercedes individual states laws and state constitutions!

In the case Norman has proposed - if FBI agents THINK they MIGHT find something, they don't need a search warrant: they just come in and look into/remove/do/take whatever they feel MIGHT prove beneficial to their case. And the Patriot Act insists this is all to be done in strictest secrecy - if anyone tells you or anyone else about anything done under this act - that person is guilty of a crime, too!

Do I want terrorists caught and punished? Absolutely!!! But there has to be a better way than trampling on our freedoms in the name of preserving them!

PostPosted: Wed Dec 25, 2002 12:38 pm
by Norman Phillips
Pat--do I recall correctly that if a request is made to our Public Library by the government invoking the Patriot Act , for the book borrowing history of a Merrimack citizen , that request and your compliance must be kept secret?

PostPosted: Wed Dec 25, 2002 1:04 pm
by jflis
Bob Holland wrote:
The plain fact is that the internet is now and will continue to be monitored by certain government agencies and there is nothing anyone can do to change it. But, maybe we really shouldn't be blaming GWB because it was during the Clinton years when:


Sure i'll blame GWB, cuz he's guilty of it. saying that you shouldn't blame him cuz someone else started it is childish in the extreem. Did clinton have a hand? sure did, he's guilty too, but he's not the president, so i'll restrict my comments to the guy in charge. cuz if he wanted to *fix* that, he could. Instead he propogates it.

as for gore "inventing" the internet... sheesh, you folks have really got to get another *joke* to push, that one's as old as "no more new taxes"

PostPosted: Wed Dec 25, 2002 4:44 pm
by Pat Heinrich
A request to, and compliance by, the public library director for information about someone under the Patriot Act is not only kept secret from the individual being investigated, but from the trustees as well. Should the FBI confiscate a computer or two, the trustees can't be told about that either. And if the FBI doesn't find evidence of terrorism but does find evidence of other crimes, they can pass that information on to local authorities for prosecution! And that information obtained without a search warrant will be considered as legally obtained! It's truly frightening.