Here is another court ruling that demonstrates that many in the legal profession do not understand simple everyday technology. There is a case recently ruled by the Sixth Circuit appeals court where a labor union asked all its member to email a company. The company in question in turn sued the labor union and the court has ruled that the labor union can be sued under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) for hacking. So emailing someone multiple times can be considered hacking! I am just dumbfounded!
This is the most absurd complaint ever. Emails are especially easy to filter based on email address, subject, body, ip addresses, keywords, and other criteria. You can block email addresses out right as spam, or filter emails to different folders, and going through a few hundred emails about the same topic is fairly easy to do. The offline equivalent to emails is postal mail. This is just the same as receiving coupons and circulars in the mail. I usually never read the ads, circulars, and other unsolicited mail that I receive in a typical day. So I quickly scan and put them in the recycling bin. I’m not going to sue Little Caesar’s because the keep sending me coupons in the mail.
When the party that is in power proposed a bill, the other party does just about everything in it’s power to vote it down, block it, and delay it. And when the roles are switched, and the same bill is proposed again the new party in power will do everything to get it through when a few years ago it opposed it, and the minority party will block it when a few years ago it proposed it. At least this is the case in spending and war. Politics in Washington are come and go out of fashion faster fads. One day you opposed the war in Iraq, the next you are for the military involvement in Libya, the next day your are against free democratic elections in Saudi Arabia, then you are for free elections in Iran. The politics of partisanship makes our foreign policy look like it suffers from schizophrenia. First we arm rebels, freedom fighters, mujahadeen, then we disarm, kill, and laser guide bombs on those same insurgents, terrorists, islamofasists. Oh, by the way, we are arming a new bunch of rebels…
A detailed account of the raid that lead to the death of Osama Bin Laden has been published by the New Yorker. The article written by Nicholas Schmidle gives reads as if it written with the aid of first hand information. Many people have questions the source of the information. In the article Mr Schmidle describes the team of Navy SEALS, their age, their gear, and their events that took place as if he himself was in the situation room with President Obama and Secretary Clinton watching the events unfold on an LCD screen. Clearly he is either fabricating the accounts of the death of Osama Bin Laden or he was leaked information by an insider at the State Department, the White House, or the Department of Defense.
To help determine the possible source of his information it would help to learn a little more of the background of Mr Schmidle. There is an article written by a C. Christine Fair, The Schmidle Muddle of the Osama Bin Laden Take Down, that states that Mr. Schmidle spent some time in Pakistan for a fellowship. Using search for Nicholas Schmidle on Google News between July 2010 and July 2011 results in two articles written by Mr. Schmidle for the New York Times and several articles about his possible deportation from Pakistan. One of the articles is about Bosnia and the other about counterfeit shoes.
But the question still remains, how did Mr. Schmidle come to obtain such detailed information about a classified mission in a foreign country? Mr. Schmidle answers this question himself in an interview on PBS Newshour. In the interview, Mr. Schmidle said that “in the course of the past two months I’ve been able to find a number of people with intimate knowledge of the the raid.” He went on to state that he built a sequence of events piece by piece was confirmed from multiple sources but he has asserted that he had not spoken with any of the SEALs themselves.
So a freelancer with questionable journalistic background who previously wrote a few travel related articles was able to get access to multiple sources on a top secret covert mission. Know, I believe in the moon landing, I believe that we dumped Osama’s body in the ocean, but no sensible person will believe that this story was not leaked to him with the approval of a high ranking official in the government. In fact, I don’t just believe he was leaked this information, I believe a great many parts were feed to him already written. There are many elements in the article that read as it if it was written by the Department of Defense Press Office.