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Frank Barry

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Should Microsoft and Google stand up and oppose the NSA publicly? Will doing nothing work?

The big Media Story today is about a Whistle-Blower who is hiding and
may soon to be captured and returned to the US for Arrest and Trial.

The exposure of NSA spying tactics of forcing Microsoft and Google,
as well as a number of other Internet Providers, both here and abroad, to provide User Records has put this nation's Internet Users on guard.

The NSA's current program PRISM has now been shown to have been
used to invade and capture information from friendly foreign nations.

We are Americans. We claim to be Free. However, in the
last 20 years things have been changing. Can we afford to stay
out of the mess?
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What I wrote, although it sounds like an hyperbole, is anything but.

I refer to CNN's presentation on July 17th's video of the US Congress
having a hearing with the Deputy Director's of the Department's of Justice, DOJ, the DIA, the National Security Agency, NSA. and one other.

In the 3 .8 hour Congressional Committee's hearing, members asked pointed
questions and received evasive answers, with promises made that a secret
session would be more appropriate to answer their queries.

The queries by the Congressmen and Congresswomen were to the point
of why the NSA and other such agencies were conducting surveillances'
of US citizens, with partner corporations, collecting said US citizen's information from the telephone (cell phone) calls, email messages, and otherwise, that had been placed and received, and specifically without the knowledge and/or permission of said US citizens, in violation of two of the amendments to the US Constitution, plainly illegal acts.

Hyperbole, not hardly.

I found on my operating system, evidence of the NSA's Prism program.
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Regardless of your opinion, please take a few minutes and
respond. ..Your input is necessary. ..Stand up, be fearless.

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    Jul 18 2013: No, they don't need to stand up and publicly oppose the NSA. I'm hoping you'll take this with a grain of critical objectivity even though it might make me sound (or evidence I am) apathetic, but I don't really care what the NSA is doing. I don't. They can play with their PRISM all they want.

    And I think in this way, because the part of me that might rigorously object to the undermining of certain freedoms gets balanced out with the other part of me that thinks we don't know how effective PRISM might be (which is the only thing if anything that could justify it) and maybe I should be grateful. That's an oversimplification of what is going on even in a mind as relatively small as mine, but it creates this cognitive draw or mental numbness, and to these whole big debate of what the NSA is doing and what Google and Microsoft should do, I just shrug.

    I've got food to put on the table and self-involved comments to place on TED. I can't afford to spend my time deeply pondering the irony of the company who downloaded all that personal information with its Street Cam cars or the one that wanted to monopolize my software options potentially standing up to a government agency that is monitoring my scintillating text messages to my mother about something the cat just did. Please. Thomas Jefferson said, 'Eternal vigilance is the price we pay for liberty." But how am I to know if he meant vigilance NSA-style or if he was referring to the citizens who are on guard and outraged? I wonder what he would think of this.
    • Jul 18 2013: It has ALWAYS been the responsibility of the citizenry to hold the "rulers" accountable (in the US.) It's only that the media feeds us only what propaganda they want us to know so knowledge of the truth escapes the average citizen. Suggest we get or news and information via alter news sites on the net to learn the truth.
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        Jul 18 2013: In a localized society, I could understand that. I should be informed about what's going on around me and hold the 'rulers' accountable. But in a globalized society, where so much is going on, PRISM-gate just being one of them, is it even possible for a person to stay on top of everything and hold governing bodies of a nation that is as enormous as the United States, geographically and population-wise? I prefer localized methods like voting with my dollar for non-GMO's and organic foods when I visit the farmer's market. I do not prefer to spend the next week learning the answers to all the questions I've asked myself about the NSA's actions in regards to Google and Microsoft, a week of learning that for me at least be the minimum amount of time necessary to make an informed decision (and that could be because I'm slow to catch on or over-think things, but that's just me).

        I share your disdain for mass media. I haven't owned a television or subscribed to a newspaper in years (though I have a soft spot for the Friday and weekend editions of the WSJ). I know my BBC News iPhone App and Google News aren't much better. Where could I go to get my news and information via alter news sites on the net? Got some good suggestions?
        • Jul 18 2013: corbettreport.com has a few suggestions though he hesitates to recommend in order to remain impartial. The main point being that t.v. and print media propagandizes our mainstream sources of facts. Snopes, Politifact and factcheck are good sites for verifying information.
    • Jul 18 2013: Daniel Early

      Please sir, roll over and go back to sleep.
      The sheep will watch over themselves.
      Nothing wrong with Apathy.
      If there weren't people like you we couldn't
      tell ourselves apart from the bad guys.
      You live in that in-between land of nod.
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        Jul 18 2013: Thank you, I think.
        • Jul 19 2013: Daniel,
          A small chuckle...
          Watch yesterday's CNN July 17th coverage of
          the Congress roasting the NSA. I've explained it in
          a couple of other postings in the last few minutes.

          It is 3.8 hours long. But if the Congress is serious
          then it could become a classic. Fun to see people
          squirm.

          If I were CNN, I would sell it to the High Schools as
          a history lesson showing our nation's government,
          in action, protecting our 1st and 4th Amendment Rights.

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