URLs du Jour

2006-01-10

  • Declan McCullagh points with alarm at a new law that says "annoying someone via the Internet is now a Federal crime". If you're like me, … well, if you're like me, I guess I'll be seeing you in the federal pen.

    But Orin Kerr says: hey, wait a minute.

    This is just the perfect blogosphere story, isn't it? It combines threats to bloggers with government incompetence and Big Brother, all wrapped up and tied togther with a little bow. … Skeptical readers will be shocked, shocked to know that the truth is quite different.
    Go read Orin, and then go back to annoying people on the Internet.

    Addendum: woops, not so fast there. Prof Volokh is more concerned about the new law than is Orin.

  • Speaking of annoyances, one Stephen Schlesinger has penned a short blurb at the Huffington Post entitled How Extensive Was the Eavesdropping?. Sample:
    Given the Nixonian-type tricks committed by this administration toward Democrats over the past five years (e.g., the Swift Boat attack on Senator Kerry's presidential campaign), one thought instantly springs to mind -- was it possible that the NSA was inadvertantly or deliberately being used to intercept conversations of Democrats -- not terrorists -- to find out what they were planning to do to counter the policies of Bush and his party? Or, alternatively, is it possible …
    Yes, it's an entire post consisting of hot-button evidence-free speculation and innuendo. Swift Boats! Nixon! Rove! Apparently, Schlesinger and his cohort are beginning to realize there's not a lot of political mileage to be gained from what Dubya and the NSA actually did. So let's now get incensed about what we fantasize they might have done. Pathetic.
  • Russell Roberts of Cafe Hayek was bugged by a WaPo op-ed by Harold Meyerson, which contained the comment
    In today's America, where business has largely abandoned the guarantees of security it used to provide its employees, a similar abdication by government was clearly not what the public sought.

    For the pervasive insecurity that is inextricably part of today's capitalism has become the dominant fact of modern life.

    Russell observes: "You do hear the claim all the time. But is it true?" He points to yesterday's Sebastian Mallaby column, also in the Post, which asserts, plausibly, that evidence for the claim is "slight". (You might also want to see Russell's first post about Meyerson's column here.)
  • And the Torch detects hypocrisy at the American Historical Association. Kind of like detecting silicone at the Emmys, but still worth reading.

Last Modified 2006-01-10 6:06 PM EST