Yesterday, I wrote a post about the Prevaricator-in-Chief’s first of a series of speeches on the horrible economy he has delivered to us. In the speech, he assured Americans that all the scandals hanging over his head were “phoney”.
He lied…again…additionally, here comes another one…and it’s a doozy. First though, a little warm-up pitch…
During a U.S. House Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill Tuesday, Rep. Michele Bachmann defended the government’s recently disclosed surveillance programs and called the man who revealed them a traitor.
The director of the National Security Agency, Army Gen. Keith Alexander, testified that the programs – which collect U.S. phone records and track the use of U.S.-based Internet servers by foreigners with possible links to terrorism – are critical to national security.
Bachmann agreed and blasted the actions of Edward Snowden, a former government contractor, who leaked information on the programs to news agencies. Snowden had worked for a year in an information technology job at the NSA office in Hawaii.
“It seems to be that the problem here is that an individual who worked within the system … broke laws and chose to declassify highly sensitive classified information,” Bachmann said.
“It seems to me that’s where our focus should be on how there could be a betrayal of trust and how a traitor could do something like this to the American people. It seems to me that’s where our focus must be and how we can prevent something like that from ever happening again.”
Through her votes to extend the Patriot Act in 2011 and the Foreign Service Intelligence Act in 2012, Bachmann has voted to preserve the government’s power to collect private data, presumably to prevent terrorist attacks. She asked Alexander if Snowden’s disclosures put the United States at risk and aided the country’s enemies.
Alexander answered in the affirmative, saying the leaks caused “irreversible and significant damage to this nation.”
Now…here comes the fastball…right down “Broadway”…
The U.S. government has demanded that major Internet companies divulge users’ stored passwords, according to two industry sources familiar with these orders, which represent an escalation in surveillance techniques that has not previously been disclosed.
If the government is able to determine a person’s password, which is typically stored in encrypted form, the credential could be used to log in to an account to peruse confidential correspondence or even impersonate the user. Obtaining it also would aid in deciphering encrypted devices in situations where passwords are reused.
“I’ve certainly seen them ask for passwords,” said one Internet industry source who spoke on condition of anonymity. “We push back.”
A second person who has worked at a large Silicon Valley company confirmed that it received legal requests from the federal government for stored passwords. Companies “really heavily scrutinize” these requests, the person said. “There’s a lot of ‘over my dead body.'”
Some of the government orders demand not only a user’s password but also the encryption algorithm and the so-called salt, according to a person familiar with the requests. A salt is a random string of letters or numbers used to make it more difficult to reverse the encryption process and determine the original password. Other orders demand the secret question codes often associated with user accounts.
We should have known what Obama was going to throw at us, based on his past “pitching starts”…
Back in January of 2011, pcmag.com reported the following…
The Obama administration is planning to place authority for developing an Internet ID for Americans in the Commerce Department.
The news came at an event at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, where U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke spoke.
Details on the plans are essentially nonexistent, but Locke and others said a lot about what the IDs would not be: “We are not talking about a national ID card,” Locke said. It also won’t be government controlled. The goal is “…enhancing online security and privacy and reducing and perhaps even eliminating the need to memorize a dozen passwords, through creation and use of more trusted digital identities.”
White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt, who also spoke at the event, said that the ID, which they refer to as “trusted identities,” would not become mandatory. Anonymity and pseudonymity will remain possible on the Internet. There will be no central database and private industry will take the lead in implementation.
A vague outline for the program was released in June entitled the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC). That document was as vague as this week’s event; trusted identities will do good things and avoid doing bad things.
It’s not surprising that details are scarce. Designing an identity that is robust, affordable, secure, easy to use, and all the other things you’d want it to be, is not easy. In fact, many of the design goals operate at cross purposes with the others. Don’t be surprised if this program takes a long time to come to a deliverable, or if the deliverable is irrelevant by the time it’s here.
After some “pre-season games” during his first term, Obama and the rest of his team have decided to go full Marxist, and wear their Mao Uniforms with pride.
Because, God knows, it’s dangerous for us Americans to express our thoughts and feelings to other Americans on the Internet. I mean, something awful might happen…like …umm…Freedom of Speech, or something. And, when American Freedom is in the way, it is very difficult for our “benevolent despot” to follow through with his plans to “radically change” America into a Socialist Paradise.
As an incurable Internet Surfer, who hangs out on Conservative Websites and Facebook Pages, and follows Conservatives on Twitter, I can testify to the fact that millions of Americans have found a commonality in their thoughts about, ideas concerning, and wishes for, the future of this great nation.
It is wonderfully reassuring to know that good, old-fashioned American Patriotism…love of God and Country, is not passe, as Obama and all his minions would want us to believe.
And, that is why this Administration is moving so rapidly to suppress it.
American Individualism and Exceptionalism stands between the Obama Administration and their Socialist Utopia.
And, Patriotic Americans scare the mess of these weasels. So, stay strong Americans.
Stay vigilant. Stay FREE.
Until He Comes.