Department of Homeland Security: It’s Time To Unwind The Anti-Terrorism Apparatus

I’ve contemplated writing an article which asks the question, do we need the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)? It rose to the forefront last week when Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced she was resigning. Then today I see Charles Kenny at Businessweek wrote (“The Case for Abolishing the DHS“), which as you might imagine grabbed my attention.

• • •

NSA Leak: Edward Snowden Character Assassination: Because Who Cares About Privacy Anyway?

nsa-logo-shield-spoofWith seemingly endless attacks on his character, Edward Snowden (NSA leaker) has unfortunately consumed this story. Even people in the media who complain we are talking about Snowden instead of privacy, like Chris Hayes, are, well, TALKING ABOUT SNOWDEN! And with that, each passing day the media talks less about the NSA (National Security Agency), privacy, and the Fourth Amendment. Soon the story will entirely encompass speculation on Snowden’s guilt, motive and whereabouts. In fact, we are nearly there now.

• • •

CHART: Fear Of Terrorism Makes People Irrational – Terrorism Fatalities vs. Firearm Homicides

Due to Homeland Security - photo by Thomas HawkAmerica is a country that prides itself on bravery and strength, but we have an irrational fear of terrorism in the post-9/11 years. You are more likely to die in a car accident, a fall, or even drown, than die in a terrorist incident. In some cases, many thousands of times more likely. But while we made no rash or illogical decisions regarding automobile deaths, we have done exactly that in response to terrorism. In addition to car accidents, falls and drownings, you are also more likely to be murdered by firearm than murdered by terrorist attack. And while car accidents, falls and drownings are accidents, murder by gun is no accident, and that makes it a good statistic to compare to terrorism.

• • •

NSA Spying: The Collective ‘Meh’ Heard ‘Round America (Pew Poll)

Meh - photo by Thomas HawkAmericans read about NSA surveillance of internet traffic and data mining of phone records and they responded with a collective “meh.” This blog doesn’t exactly tear it up in the page view department, but my recent posts on NSA Spying have gotten very little traction at all. And that leads me to believe when it comes to the NSA leak story, Americans just don’t give a shit.

• • •

NSA Spying On Americans: We Are The Reason It Will Continue

There’s a simple reason the National Security Agency’s (NSA) data mining of phone records and internet content/traffic will continue unabated — This is how Americans now expect their government to behave. We want to be protected, and so many of us have made peace with it. As long as it’s out of sight, out of mind, there’s no civil liberty concerns.

• • •