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[arstechnica] How the NSA snooped on encrypted Internet traffic for a decade - Page 5

post #41 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mookster View Post

You're just becoming more and more polarized. You can't work on the assumption that the government or the NSA always has your best interests at heart. The harder you work to prove to yourself that everything is okay with this situation, the more and more your argument relies on the integrity of these people.

It's a weak place to lay down your foundation. If you want your government to have integrity, you need to keep them accountable. If you want them to remain accountable, you need to be informed. If you want to be informed, you need to question their integrity.

In a democratic system, no one should be just assuming that the government is intrinsically, morally, good. If the majority of people choose that dogmatic approach, the electoral process can be easily subverted. As it stands, I'd say that more people trust the NSA out of utter and complete faith. So much so, that they don't even consider how big data can be used to impact the electoral process. They don't see the means, or the motive. Motive is readily apparent, because the tools they wield can easily influence an election, and the proper elected officials can easily lead to proliferation of their trade. Better budgets, wages, legal sanctioning, protection, everything -- everything the NSA struggles to do begins with the people who empower them to do it.

No internal, secret "vetting" of NSA officials cures that obvious conflict of interests. The longer you allow the situation to remain as it is, the more likely it becomes that they will engage in corruption by corroboration. That type of corroboration would be potent enough to make your democratic process completely redundant. Big data simply gives the NSA too much realtime insight into the hearts and minds of the voting public; and that access only goes deeper every single day. Technology is not slowing down.

Voters need to have the capability of being informed. Knowing just how uninformed voters are is what encourages candidates to give up on the idea of informing the voter. They now only aim to have you make the "right" decisions for the wrong reasons. The entire process is based around generating money and using it to be the most effective liar. Big data is the single greatest tool available to perform this, especially because maintstream journalism is no longer attracting any serious attention. With that being the case, it's extremely problematic to allow the a huge, militant government agency to be the largest big data gatherer with a 52 billion dollar annual budget. Not only that, but they're creating corporate ties through incentivization of cooperation, so that data mining from corporations also gets funneled into their library.

I don't know why people can't see the problem, here. Far too much faith with far too little reason, seems to be at the root of it all.

Dude I absolutely agree with everything that you just said. We are arguing two completely different things here. I am not saying that the NSA is 100% trustworthy or that they haven't been corrupted to some degree. They are a government agency for God sake, some degree of corruption is guaranteed just because of that fact. My argument, instead, is that there are certain things that the NSA has to be allowed to do in order to perform its function. The naïve notion that we can survive as a nation in this very dangerous world, in which we do have dedicated and fanatic enemies, without a robust intelligence apparatus is simply asinine. We can quibble about just how much latitude the agencies are given to that end but the idea that they should all be simply shut down because you don't trust the people involved is simply dangerous and foolish. These agencies have probably saved millions of American lives, if not more, since their inception...
post #42 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

Dude I absolutely agree with everything that you just said. We are arguing two completely different things here. I am not saying that the NSA is 100% trustworthy or that they haven't been corrupted to some degree. They are a government agency for God sake, some degree of corruption is guaranteed just because of that fact. My argument, instead, is that there are certain things that the NSA has to be allowed to do in order to perform its function. The naïve notion that we can survive as a nation in this very dangerous world, in which we do have dedicated and fanatic enemies, without a robust intelligence apparatus is simply asinine. We can quibble about just how much latitude the agencies are given to that end but the idea that they should all be simply shut down because you don't trust the people involved is simply dangerous and foolish. These agencies have probably saved millions of American lives, if not more, since their inception...
"Since their inception" is one thing. The NSA as a whole is one thing. The data mining is another thing.

The tools they possess stand in direct contest to the democratic process. If there could ever be a line, that would be it. That is the last barrier separating democracy from fascism.

Again, you're defaulting to faith. You assume or at least fear that external threats have risen to a level where it's reasonable to put democracy itself in the line of fire. There's no valid basis for that, and if there was.. that would mean that maybe, just maybe it's time to start listening to the demands of those external threats. They might just have a few legitimate reasons for being so hostile, if they're that hostile in the first place.

Lots of big "ifs" there. Certainly too many for a voter to be rationalizing these threats to their own democratic process. Brings us back to the problem of voters having the inability to even be informed in the first place; yet another consequence of the NSA pushing the limits of "justified" secrecy.
Edited by Mookster - 8/24/16 at 10:28pm
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post #43 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

All government employees with security access are put through a very thorough vetting process which Snowden evidently passed. The fact that he later decided to become a traitor (probably in more of a bid for notoriety than any sense of public concern) is not something that isn't the NSA's fault or that they can 100% defend against. The guy knew what he was doing and was out of their reach far before they knew what he was planning...

Everything that happens with data the NSA collects is the NSA's fault. There must be accountability commensurate with power and authority or they become the threat they are ostensibly supposed to guard against.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

My argument, instead, is that there are certain things that the NSA has to be allowed to do in order to perform its function. The naïve notion that we can survive as a nation in this very dangerous world, in which we do have dedicated and fanatic enemies, without a robust intelligence apparatus is simply asinine.

I think you place far too much value in the nation-state itself and far too little in its purpose.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

These agencies have probably saved millions of American lives, if not more, since their inception...

These agencies are like an overactive immune system destroying its own body in response to an allergen. Can't safeguard American values or the American way of life by undermining fundamental aspects of them, nor can American security be ensured by short-sighted, reactionary, responses that destabilize the rest of the planet and create legions of new enemies in the process.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mookster View Post

The tools they possess stand in direct contest to the democratic process. If there could ever be a line, that would be it. That is the last barrier separating democracy from fascism.

That barrier was crossed a long time ago. I don't really think American democracy was ever fully realized; it was flawed in it's inception, and with every step forward, there has been one back. As the level of enfranchisement increases, the meaningfulness of choice has decreased. As media becomes more pervasive, knowledge becomes harder to separate from propaganda.
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post #44 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blameless View Post

That barrier was crossed a long time ago. I don't really think American democracy was ever fully realized; it was flawed in it's inception, and with every step forward, there has been one back. As the level of enfranchisement increases, the meaningfulness of choice has decreased. As media becomes more pervasive, knowledge becomes harder to separate from propaganda.
Yeah, probably, but there was at least a thirst to be an informed voter at one point.. and a healthy conviction to become one. I can't fathom how people rationalize a nation-wide surveillance program that collects the kind of information necessary to construct a detailed psychology profile on all innocent people.

It's mind blowing how that can be considered acceptable to so many people. I don't think they understand just how much can be done with standard advertising techniques and a good body of data about your target audience. Snowden couldn't possibly be a bad person for wanting to at least expose the nature of that data collection; no one would believe it in a million years, if not for what he did. The notion of data collection on this scale going on without public knowledge would sound like pure fiction if it came from anyone else. Faith in government is approaching a level where it's comparable to old-school faith in deities. "The NSA works in mysterious ways" "The NSA requires an omnipotent presence in our lives to keep us safe!" "They lie about it because that's the only way to protect us!"

It's ridiculous. The garbled excuses people come up with to escape the reality of this are a mirror of the lies James Clapper used to dodge hard questions from Congress during the investigation that took place because even Congress (the regulatory body in place to control agencies like the NSA) was shocked by information they got from Snowden.
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post #45 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

Dude I absolutely agree with everything that you just said. We are arguing two completely different things here. I am not saying that the NSA is 100% trustworthy or that they haven't been corrupted to some degree. They are a government agency for God sake, some degree of corruption is guaranteed just because of that fact. My argument, instead, is that there are certain things that the NSA has to be allowed to do in order to perform its function. The naïve notion that we can survive as a nation in this very dangerous world, in which we do have dedicated and fanatic enemies, without a robust intelligence apparatus is simply asinine. We can quibble about just how much latitude the agencies are given to that end but the idea that they should all be simply shut down because you don't trust the people involved is simply dangerous and foolish. These agencies have probably saved millions of American lives, if not more, since their inception...

Have a listen and tell me what you think
https://youtu.be/TIu0aFKmWKc?t=45m13s
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post #46 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

Dude I absolutely agree with everything that you just said. We are arguing two completely different things here. I am not saying that the NSA is 100% trustworthy or that they haven't been corrupted to some degree. They are a government agency for God sake, some degree of corruption is guaranteed just because of that fact. My argument, instead, is that there are certain things that the NSA has to be allowed to do in order to perform its function. The naïve notion that we can survive as a nation in this very dangerous world, in which we do have dedicated and fanatic enemies, without a robust intelligence apparatus is simply asinine. We can quibble about just how much latitude the agencies are given to that end but the idea that they should all be simply shut down because you don't trust the people involved is simply dangerous and foolish. These agencies have probably saved millions of American lives, if not more, since their inception...

you watch too much CNN and other mainstream media brother. lay off those fear mongering propaganda pushing television new stations.
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post #47 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by EightDee8D View Post

Terrorism - false flag threat by gov (murican mostly) to do anything. biggrin.gif

but but ...... those are conspiracies hur durr. sure they are if you can't open your eyes. wink.gif

i prefer to be called an event skeptic..lol
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post #48 of 51
They just used the NSA key. Random numbers aren't.

Hell I've seen "RNG" that just cycle 6 numbers over and over.
post #49 of 51
Oh yeah, I forgot, 9/11 didn't really happen and was all planned by Bush and Cheney. rolleyes.gif
post #50 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Majin SSJ Eric View Post

Oh yeah, I forgot, 9/11 didn't really happen and was all planned by Bush and Cheney. rolleyes.gif

You posted this at exactly 911am. Omgomg. Illuminati. eek.gif

Sent from my VS985 4G using Tapatalk
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