Thursday, May 11, 2006

NSA tracking and Porter Goss

I may have been a little off base with my previous post about Goss and the NSA/AT&T spying, but I was onto something. Other people are connecting the dots for me and it's pretty spooky. Eric Alterman does quite a job delving into the "history" of Porter Goss over at Mother Jones. Now throw the recent news about phone numbers being tracked by the NSA of millions of Americans. E-Commerce Times has an article that ties the latest phone number collections with the current EFF lawsuit against AT&T to tap phones and email. And now put all that into context with the new nominee to head the CIA: Gen. Michael Hayden. May favorite quote from Alterman:
"...it should be surprising to no one that we have to rely on Jon Stewart, once again, to shed the most necessary light on this process. Through “the magic of TiVo,” Stewart’s staff of crack comedy writers shamed the national press by noticing, as none of them did, that Bush used the exact same words to nominate the catastrophic Porter Goss as he would to nominate Gen. Hayden: "He's the right man to lead the CIA at this critical moment in our nation's history."
Firedoglake has a list of of the phone companies that gave out the info as well as alternatives you can sign with that haven't handed out your records. Glad I use Sprint (for the time being). Interesting comments with that post too. And Crooks And Liars has video of Jack Cafferty with a rant that's spot on. But does this really suprise anyone since cell phone companies have been selling your records to anyone who will pay for them?

So my question, if phone companies will sell your personal phone records to anyone willing to pay for them, what are the phone companies getting from the government in this latest story? Big business isn't likely to do something for nothing or for "the good of the country." I'm really curious how this all ties into net neutrality. But the concept itself of the gov't knowing who I call is disturbing itself. Great for tracking a terrorist, but tracking "millions" of Americans? Are there really millions of people aiding terrorists in this country? I bet there were millions of pinko communists during the McCarthy era too.

And this screen shot made me chuckle. No shame in AT&T's game:

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