Monday, May 15, 2006

Spying for Fund-raising Okay, Says ACLU

Stop the ACLU has the latest press release from the ACLU on the subject of NSA data-mining. Not surprisingly, the ACLU takes the opportunity to once again note its outrage at the current administration and its fascist tactics:

The government is clearly tracking the calls and communications of millions of ordinary Americans and that’s just plain wrong. This news serves only as further proof of how far we have slid into an abuse of power that undercuts the values Americans hold dear.

It is possible though, that the ACLU's main objection to the program is that is doesn't go far enough. That is, if the ACLU's own spying program is any indication:

The American Civil Liberties Union is using sophisticated technology to collect a wide variety of information about its members and donors in a fund-raising effort that has ignited a bitter debate over its leaders’ commitment to privacy rights.

One brave soul, one Michael Meyers, objected to the policy only to see it changed before his very eyes:

...the next day, the privacy policy on the group’s Web site was changed. “They took out all the language that would show that they were violating their own policy,” Meyers said. “In doing so, they sanctified their procedure while still keeping it secret.”

Scary to think the lengths the ACLU would go to if national security were at stake, rather than just simple fund-raising. Incidentally, see "ACLU" for any future definitions of "flaming hypocricy."

Anecdotally, where were the privacy advocates at Daughter #1's doctor appointment last week? The same people aghast that the NSA is collecting phone numbers were nowhere to be found when nurses were spying on my daughter's life. Two of the far more intrusive questions than "What is your phone number?" included: "Do you come into contact with smokers in your daily life?" and "Do you feel safe in your own home?"

Not only do "privacy advocates" have no objection to those questions, they are likely the same crowd who thought of the questions, designed to "protect our most vulnerable."

Of course, possible al Qaeda operations in America pale in importance to the danger people face from second hand smoke...or their parents.

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