Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Didn't we learn anything by handing over control of bail-out funds to the Secretary of the Treasury?

I mean, we stampeded ourselves into handing the Treasury Department extra-constitutional powers last September, and things have only gotten worse, not better.

Now, with the proposed Cybersecurity Act of 2009 we're about to hand the Secretary of Commerce the same blank check:


(a) DESIGNATION.—The Department of Commerce shall serve as the clearinghouse of cybersecurity threat and vulnerability information to Federal government and private sector owned critical infrastructure information systems and networks.

(b) FUNCTIONS.—The Secretary of Commerce—

(1) shall have access to all relevant data concerning such networks without regard to any provision of law, regulation, rule, or policy restricting such access...

Meanwhile, the President

may declare a cybersecurity emergency and order the limitation or shutdown of Internet traffic to and from any compromised Federal government or United States critical infrastructure information system or network...

Only little problem here is that there is not a definition of United States critical infrastructure information system or network ever provided to limit the powers of either the President or the Secretary.

But they're all good people in Washington, and they are just here to help.


Nancy Willing said...

I am extremely disappointed in this. The glee with which our state officials are accepting our portion of this money for cyber crime fighting just irks me to no end.
Is the stimulus meant to create jobs or what?
Brian Moore was recently moved over from Facilities Manager in Red Clay District office to an unannounced new Homeland Security Chief.....for RCSD....
What is to become of us?

Steven H. Newton said...

The problem, Nancy, is the classic issue of government that James Madison framed so long ago:

How do you make government strong enough to DO GOOD, and at the same time hem it in with sufficient restrictions to keep it from DOING EVIL?