Friends of Padre Steve’s World,
Thank you for your faithful reading, insightful comments and encouragement. I am doing some work on a case teaching method class tonight to present tomorrow but some interesting things are going on in the world. Since the situation with Edward Snowden and the NSA is not going away anytime soon I thought that this article which I wrote back in June was still appropriate and maybe worth the read for those that have not read it before. The issue with the NSA and the Snowden leaks is the tensions that exist between civil liberties, privacy and security in our interconnected cyber-world. The fact is that I think that sometimes people who write Science Fiction have a better grasp on these issues than activists or defenders of any particular point of view. I think that this episode of Star Trek Deep Space Nine is very enlightening in thinking about the issues that the surround this current controversy.
Have a great night,
“A popular government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy; or, perhaps both.” James Madison
I am amazed when I read the reports about the activities of the National Security Agency and the reactions of of citizens to them. I know that I feel a sense of apprehension about those activities. The national security state and the seeming all pervasive security and surveillance apparatus which demolishes any sense of privacy, especially the protections enunciated in the Fourth Amendment and to some extent the First Amendment.
I also feel, or rather understand from history and empirical evidence that many others, many from unfriendly countries do not share those apprehensions. It makes for an ethical, legal and even constitutional conundrum that I am not sure if anyone of us is quite comfortable with and perhaps maybe we shouldn’t be.
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