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Top Intel Official Urges Americans to Reconsider Privacy

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The seemingly inviolate sense that all rights in America revolve around a central right of privacy may soon go the way of the dinosaur, if one top Intelligence official representing the Bush Administration's horrid views has his way.

According to Senior Fascist- ahem, I mean Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence <a href="click here Kerr</a> (I really wish I was making this up- emphasis, and righteous indignation mine);<blockquote>And that leads you directly into the concern for privacy. Too often, privacy has been equated with anonymity; and it's an idea that is deeply rooted in American culture. The Long Ranger wore a mask but Tonto didn't seem to need one even though he did the dirty work for free. You'd think he would probably need one even more. But in our interconnected and wireless world, anonymity -- or the appearance of anonymity -- is quickly becoming a thing of the past.

Anonymity results from a lack of identifying features. Nowadays, when so much correlated data is collected and available -- and I'm just talking about profiles on MySpace, Facebook, YouTube here -- the set of identifiable features has grown beyond where most of us can comprehend. We need to move beyond the construct that equates anonymity with privacy and focus more on how we can protect essential privacy in this interconnected environment.

<span style="font-weight: bold;">Protecting anonymity isn't a fight that can be won.</span> Anyone that's typed in their name on Google understands that. Instead, privacy, I would offer, is a system of laws, rules, and customs with an infrastructure of Inspectors General, oversight committees, and privacy boards on which our intelligence community commitment is based and measured. And it is that framework that we need to grow and nourish and adjust as our cultures change.</blockquote>I would love to have a nice little sit-down with this man.  If I could, this is what I would say...
<blockquote><div style="text-align: justify;">Okay, first let's go over some basics.  It's clear, sir, that your years of public and private service have skipped some essential American ideals.

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Firstly, the definition of <a href="click here "The quality or condition of being secluded from the presence or view of others."

Now, <a href="click here "The quality or state of being unknown or unacknowledged."

I don't see a substantial difference in the two terms you are attempting to disassociate.  One requires the other.  Here's some reading, Dr. Kerr, you might have attempted prior to opening your hole about issues you obviously are either intentionally trying to obfuscate in order to better undermine essential liberties, or possibly worse, you have no conception of; try legendary Supreme Court Justice Warren Brandeis in the pivotal case establishing the modern view of the <a href="http://www.lawrence.edu/fast/boardmaw/Privacy_brand_warr2.html">right to privacy</a>;<blockquote>The design of the law must be to protect those persons with whose affairs the community has no legitimate concern, from being dragged into an undesirable and undesired publicity and to protect all persons, whatsoever; their position or station, from having matters which they may properly prefer to keep private, made public against their will.
</blockquote>Or here's <a href="click here Clinton</a>, surely not one of your personal heroes but definitely one of mine- he's quoting the same guy, so I really think you might have snoozed your way into that doctorate;
</div><div style="text-align: justify;"><blockquote><p>      But we must never forget, in this age of increasing interdependence, fueled by an explosion in information technology that is completely changing the way we work and live and relate to each other, that increasingly, we will have to ask ourselves:  Does our freedom include privacy?  Because there are new and different ways for that privacy to be restricted.  </p><p>      In 1928, Justice Brandeis wrote his famous words saying that privacy was "the right most valued by civilized people," and he defined it simply as the right to be left alone.  </p></blockquote></div><div style="text-align: justify;">Not get back to "work" and take your NSA taps off my phone!</div></blockquote><div style="text-align: justify;">
</div>Seriously, though, this issue will hopefully be one on which Democrats can establish their clearly superior moral position, making the coming severe rout of the GOP in 2008 that much bloodier.


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Mike Kuykendall is a progressive, patriotic veteran of the U.S. Air Force, fighting hard to save our democracy.

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