Email this article to a friend

The ITT List

Sunday, Jul 6, 2008, 6:47 pm

Happy Illusion of Independence Day!

By Jarrett Dapier
Last Wednesday, as many, if not most of us, were preparing the brats and brisquet and cooling the Coors, media and non-profits of all shapes and sizes were reporting on a spate of varying stories, the general gist of which can be summed up thusly: privacy in America is (approaching) dead. Having all been reported right before Independence Day, I'm sure they've faded away like tracers in the sky from our collective consciousness, so let's review:

* The BBC reported that a U.S. Court has ruled that "Google must divulge the viewing habits of every user who has ever watched any video on YouTube," a decision that has the good folks at the Electronic Frontier Foundation up in arms.

*Value the privacy of your relationship with your doctor? Well, if you're a woman and you live in South Dakota (or any of the surrounding states) you can kiss that luxury goodbye. Slate reported on "South Dakota's unbelievable new abortion law," wherein the government provides an inaccurate, emotionally manipulative, albeit clever, statement that abortion providers in SD must give to any patient seeking an abortion before the procedure begins. You see, women are little children who can't make private, serious medical and moral decisions on their own - they need to be lectured, belittled, humiliated, and condescended to, as required by state law.

*Who needs warrants? "Tentative Justice Department guidelines, to be released later this summer, would let agents investigate people whose backgrounds — and potentially their race or ethnicity — match the traits of terrorists," reports AP news (via TPM).

*One million people are potential terrorists.

*Glenn Greenwald is basically the fiercest, most trustworthy source of criticism and reporting regarding Obama's cave-in on telecom immunity (and the attendant shamelessly hypocritical moves by adulating Obama fans in the media to excuse him). Also, TPM's got a good timeline that starkly lays out the evolution of Obama from steadfast protector of the Fourth Amendment to Bush-enabling invertebrate. Greenwald: "It isn't that difficult to keep the following two thoughts in one's head at the same time -- though it seems to be for many people:

(1) What Barack Obama is doing on Issue X is wrong, indefensible and worthy of extreme criticism;

(2) I support Barack Obama for President because he's a better choice than John McCain."

OK, time for bed!

Jarrett Dapier is a former assistant publisher at In These Times. Previous work for ITT includes interviews with playwright Christopher Shinn and Fugazi guitarist, Ian Mackaye. He currently works with teens at the Evanston Public Library where he runs a recycled drumming program and directs stage adaptations of young adult literature. He lives in Evanston, IL.

View Comments