Where’s the Outrage for the Cybersecurity Act?
By Jerry A. Kane
Our government will control everything on the Internet, under the Cybersecurity Act of 2009, introduced by Senators John Rockefeller and Olympia Snowe. If enacted, this “big brother” law would allow government scrutiny over everything posted to the Internet, while granting the White House “unprecedented control over computer software and Internet services” and powers “to access private online data, regulate the cyber security industry and even shut down Internet traffic.”
Under the guise of safety, the bill would grant a White House appointed cybersecurity “czar” unprecedented authority to shut down private domestic networks or limit Internet traffic in a “critical” information network during a cybersecurity emergency. What distinguishes a critical information network or constitutes a cybersecurity emergency would be determined by the president. The act would also impart authority to the Commerce Department to track cybersecurity threats and override any existing laws, regulations, rules, or policies restricting access to security data from private networks.
The bill would not only make the president more powerful, but it would also allow the Secretary of Commerce access to all information on a network, which could make the network less safe and more vulnerable to intruders or terrorists. Yet the senators remain resolute to remedy their perceived crisis. Rockefeller insists on protecting “critical infrastructure at all costs” and Snowe demands swift action to avoid “a cyber-Katrina.” Their rhetoric of a looming crisis matches the fearmongering manufactured for the bailout and stimulus bills, given that the bills required drastic intervention and immediate action with little or no consideration for a downside or potential harm.
The proposed legislation “would empower the government to set and enforce security standards for private industry for the first time.” The president could use the authority granted in the proposed law to suspend the effective use of the Internet to circulate information or coordinate activities outside mainstream media outlets or government-approved channels. Such a law could lead to a network police force that would levy fines and shut down private Web sites that government officials determine inappropriate or offensive. The act could also open the door for more Internet censorship legislation, and follow the path taken by Australia and China.
In November, more than half of America’s electorate handed Barack Obama and the progressives carte blanche power to rule over the lives of all Americans, and now they are using that power by attempting to manage and control the flow of information through the only remaining medium capable of resuscitating personal freedom and individual liberty. The Americans who voted for the progressives have put the lives of all Americans in the steely grip of Leviathan, and no Chicago Tea Party, 9-12 Project, or surge in talk radio listeners will prevent the government from wielding its power.
Once again, a host Republican has engaged in parasitism to sacrifice her party for a perceived symbiotic relationship that in fact benefits only the Democrat Party. Snowe and her progressive colleagues in the Republican Party have transformed the party into a sacrificial organism to nourish and support extreme socialist objectives. And the corporate magpies on TV and talk radio seem to be too preoccupied with hawking books, espousing inane, meaningless platitudes, bathing in laudatory praises from fawning sycophants, and acting magnanimous in damning both political parties, to make their listeners aware of this transformation.
Ronald Reagan, Henry David Thoreau, and Thomas Paine understood that a government works best only when it governs least, and that big government inevitably increases servitude, restrains liberty, and destroys freedom. While the Republican Party languishes, the approaching tyranny is poised to lead humanity headlong into what will become a deeply bloodstained century. Yet, there is no outcry from the fourth estate, which was traditionally the guardian of liberty, in opposition to the introduction of the Cybersecurity Law.
Will the media raise its collective voice against this new Orwellian power play as it did when the progressives touted the new Fairness Doctrine and advocated enforced localism? Not likely, because progressives’ outrage reaches a resounding crescendo only when the buttering of their bread is involved.
Open Congress, a project of the Sunlight Foundation, has posted the full text of this bill here. On their website, you can comment on this legislation by line item. You can fight this impending police state control by writing, faxing, emailing, and calling your Senators. Tell them to oppose S.773, the Cybersecurity Act of 2009.