I’m tired of the debt ceiling debate. And besides, there are plenty of other crappy stories around. Like the decline of the freedom of the internet. For a time, technology was able to out pace government control and intrusiveness. That time seems to be ending.
A House committee has approved a bill that would force ISPs to retain records of our internet histories for a year in order to aid law enforcement.
A last-minute rewrite of the bill expands the information that commercial Internet providers are required to store to include customers’ names, addresses, phone numbers, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, and temporarily-assigned IP addresses, some committee members suggested.
And sadly, leading the charge on this bill are “conservatives.” I don’t see how someone who proclaims to be conservative can think that the federal government should be able to force private companies to retain information on their customers and report to law enforcement agencies.
Supporters of the measure characterized it as something that would aid law enforcement in investigating Internet crimes. Not enacting it “would keep our law enforcement officials in the dark ages,” said its primary sponsor, House Judiciary chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas).
Yes, I’m sure forcing the citizenry to keep tabs on each other would aid in law enforcement. Just because a bill would make people safer doesn’t make it right. Or constitutional. There are times when my libertarianism puts me on the same side as liberals. Unfortunately, Obama is not one of them. His justice department seems to be all onboard with this proposed law. If we have to suffer through an uber-liberal president, couldn’t he at least have been one who stood up for civil liberties? It’s the worst of both worlds here.
In other internet news, top Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee are investigating whether the FCC was swayed by politics in issuing its ‘net neutrality’ rules last December. What? A government agency making political decisions? Say it ain’t so.