More immunities for Telcos?

I thought the whole fight for retroactive immunity for telecommunication companies was over. Apparently not. A new immunity bill was just released to the public with the House voting on it tomorrow. I can’t support any bill that makes this kind of move, quite simply because what these companies did was illegal when they did it, and for the government to go around and say “It’s okay” seems laughable. Too bad it’s very real.

Senator Orrin Hatch,

It has recently come to my attention that a new “FISA” compromise bill has been put forth to the House of Representatives. As your constituent I find that giving retroactive immunity to telecommunication companies that broke our nation’s laws is just the same as if I as an individual were to steal corporate documents and retroactively get protection against penalties and jail-time before I can be prosecuted.

What these telecommunication companies did is wrong, regardless of the reason. As such, these companies ought to be held responsible for what they did, and not be able to get away with supporting internal spying efforts on US citizens that are “believed” to be linked with terrorist cells around the world.

Britain is known as a surveillance state. Cameras are everywhere, police brutality and totalitarianism is a massive problem with our ally. Citizens rally, fight, petition to make sure that their rights are not eroded. With that said, I refuse as an American citizen to allow that to happen to my country, and this “FISA” compromise bill is one step towards that same surveillance state.

Turn down any bill or any “loophole” that the federal government or telecommunication companies are trying to use to escape penalties to which they deserve for violating our laws.

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2 Responses to “More immunities for Telcos?”

  1. Even worse, why did governmental agencies ASK/REQUIRE compliance with these apparently illegal requests? That is where all this starts and where prosecution should begin. The ONLY reason telcos should get immunity would be if they were to properly stand as witnesses in a prosecution against the illegal requests.

    This should be required reading:

    http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2007/07/privacy_and_the.html

    Get the full essay here: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID1098449_code249137.pdf?abstractid=998565&mirid=1

    One telling comment:

    My argument is always this.

    If you have nothing to hide, would you mind an IRS audit every year?

    Everyone seems to understand once I suggest that.

    Posted by: Apostrophe at July 13, 2007 08:15 AM

    Defend your freedoms, no one else will.

  2. Ok, that link to the essay seems to have failed – get it from this page:

    http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=998565

    Sorry about that. (You know, formatting would be nice to be able to use in comments.)

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