Tuesday, September 10, 2013

2067 What Price Liberty

We hear a lot about government snooping. Edward Snowden whistleblowing on the NSA and all. Interesting how he has become such a devil and such a hero all at the same time. People deplore what he's done on the one hand but use the knowledge to criticize the government anyhow. 

Interesting too that the people who were happy to have the government use its Patriot Act powers under one administration detest its use under another. Or vice-versa.

Those libertarian types like myself who abhorred it from the first can only shake our heads. I sure wouldn't want to write about it electronically. Shaking my head is the only safe thing to do. Even if a drone is taking a picture of me I can say it was just a nervous tic.

Anyhow, you wonder how the NSA got the info they did. Weren't there some companies who actually had proprietary access to this data they were snooping? Yep. And in truly American fashion, they saw an opportunity to make dough of the whole data deal.

You'll be happy to know emails didn't cost the government a lot. Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft turned them over for as little as $25. While Facebook didn't charge a dime. 

Apparently the NSA friended them.  

But boy do some companies rake it in with wiretaps. AT&T charges the government a $325 "activation fee" for each wiretap. Then they charge $10 a day to maintain it. That's chump change compared to Viacom. They charge $775 for the first month and $500 a month for every month thereafter. 

I guess they understand how expensive extremism in the pursuit of safety should be. 

Still, it's nice to know our public-spirited companies aren't actually sacrificing liberty for security. They're charging through the nose for it.

America, ya gotta love it.

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