Many many moons ago, when I was just a young dad with lots of responsibilities and not very many dollars, I found myself sitting at an outdoor lunch table with a bunch of my colleagues from work who were single and evidently without the kind of financial concerns that I had. They were talking about sunglasses. Each was wearing a pair of pricey shades that cost about as much as I was spending per month on food and diapers. The whole conversation was absurd to me. Eventually somebody asked me what I kind of sunglasses I favored, to which I replied,
I dunno. Whenever I need something like that I just wait until they put it in a McDonald’s Happy Meal(tm).
Similarly, whenever I need an opinion on an issue that has to do with telecommunications policy, privacy, the First Amendment, cowardice and chickenshitosity in the Congress, or fear mongering and criminality in the Bush/Cheney administration, I generally just wait for Harold Feld to put an article up on Wetmachine/Tales of the Sausage Factory to tell me what I’m thinking. I know how I feel about an issue, more or less, but a good Feldian rant always brings it into focus — and often gets me to call or write my congresscritters.
Lately I’ve been really steamed about all this talk of passing a bill that will grant immunity to the telecommunications companies for illegally spying on their customers, Nixon-style, since way before the magical “all laws cease here” date NineEleven (peace be upon it). From what I can tell, the chickenshit Congress is making noises about going along with Lord Voldemort’s, I mean Bush’s request to make time-travelling the law of the land, at least when it comes to giant corporations spying on citizens on behalf of who-knows-who.
So, I’ve been kinda waiting for a duly appropriate, incendiary, and legally impeccable disquisition from Harold on this. The fact that he has not yet weighed in leads me to think that either yes, what I’m saying is as obvious as “water is wet” and this does not merit a TotSF article, or, perhaps, that I’m missing something.
It is worth mentioning that the week after that aforementioned conversation about sunglasses, I stopped at a McDonald’s and purchased a Happy Meal. There was a nice pair of sunglasses inside, which, moreover, almost fit.
Harold, we await your rant.
UPDATE: I had not realized, when I wrote this bit this morning, that the telecom companies had told the Congress to go screw themselves.
This is bad, bad, bad stuff. Very bad stuff. Scary bad stuff.