If a false entry in a database leads to a unconstitutional police search that reveals illegal drugs, does the government get to hold it against you?
That’s the question the Supreme Court will tackle on Tuesday in a case civil liberties groups such as the Electronic Privacy Information Center argue will have broad implications in a world where we are constantly being evaluated against databases and watch lists that are riddled with frustratingly persistent errors.
“In these interlinked databases, one error can spread like a disease, infecting every system it touches and condemning the individual to whom this error refers to suffer substantial delay, harassment, and improper arrest,” EPIC director Marc Rotenberg argued in a friend of the court brief (.pdf).
Not surprisingly, the government disagrees.
“Police officers in the field must be allowed to rely on information they receive from others when it is reasonable to do so,” the Justice Department wrote in its brief (.pdf), arguing that throwing out the evidence won’t make errors less likely.
All it would take is someone intentionally, I mean, “erroneously” entering something and suddenly your entire life is subject to being searched down to the minutest detail. This goes against illegal search and seizure.
Yep – the mudslinging is now really taking off…
McCain officials had said early in the weekend that they plan to begin advertising after Tuesday’s debate that will tie Obama to convicted money launderer Tony Rezko and former Weathermen radical William Ayers.
But Obama isn’t waiting to respond. His campaign is going up Monday on national cable stations with a scathing ad saying: “Three quarters of a million jobs lost this year. Our financial system in turmoil. And John McCain? Erratic in a crisis. Out of touch on the economy. No wonder his campaign wants to change the subject.
“Turn the page on the financial crisis by launching dishonorable, dishonest ‘assaults’ against Barack Obama. Struggling families can’t turn the page on this economy, and we can’t afford another president who is this out of touch.”
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on Saturday slammed Sen. Barack Obama’s political relationship with a former anti-war radical, accusing him of associating “with terrorists who targeted their own country.”
Palin’s attack delivered on the McCain campaign’s announcement that it would step up attacks on the Democratic presidential candidate with just a month left before the November general election.
“We see America as the greatest force for good in this world,” Palin said at a fund-raising event in Colorado, adding, “Our opponent though, is someone who sees America, it seems, as being so imperfect that he’s palling around with terrorists who would target their own country.”
Palin cited an article in Saturday’s New York Times about Obama’s relationship with Ayers, now 63. But that article concluded that “the two men do not appear to have been close. Nor has Mr. Obama ever expressed sympathy for the radical views and actions of Mr. Ayers, whom he has called ‘somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was 8.’ ”
Conservative groups have spent more than ten million dollars on ads tying Obama to Ayers, and so far, Americans don’t seem to give a heck. (This tells us what about how we’re going to make that mortgage payment?)
A few minutes later, in fact, an aide emerged from the House chamber to ask Davis if he wanted to manage the next bill, H. R. 6575, the Over-Classification Reduction Act. Davis shook his head no. “In the old days, you’d jump at the chance to manage a bill,” he told me.
No more. The revolution is over, the thrill is gone and the Republican brand under President Bush has, in Davis’s view, been so tarnished that, as he likes to say, “if we were a dog food, they would take us off the shelf.” These will be Davis’s last few weeks in Congress. He decided against re-election, disaffected by the partisanship, by a process he calls broken, by a party he considers hijacked by social conservatives. “We’re just not getting much done,” he said.
Another aide sat down and told him there would be three more votes. “They’re all yes votes,” the aide said.
Davis laughed. “Let me make up my own mind!” he said in mock protest. Gesturing to me, he said, “I’ve just been telling this guy I’m an independent agent!”
Then he asked for a list of the three bills to see if he really did want to vote yes: A nonbinding resolution “recognizing that we are facing a global food crisis.” O.K., Davis said puckishly. That’s a yes.
A second resolution “expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the emergency communications services provided by the American Red Cross are vital resources for military-service members and their families.” O.K., another yes.
A third resolution “condemning the use of television programming by Hamas to indoctrinate hatred, violence and anti-Semitism toward Israel in Palestinian children.” A third yes. “They read me pretty well,” Davis said, chuckling at the absurdity of it all.
Then he shook his head. Three resolutions offering platitudes, none of them carrying the force of law, none of them actually doing anything. Davis asked for a list of all 20 bills on the floor that day — naming post offices, recognizing the anniversary of Bulgaria’s independence, honoring an old American war sloop.
Davis wanted me to have the list. “Tell them about the important work we’re doing while Rome burns,” he said.
Following the release of the blu-ray version of Iron Man on october 1st, Paramount’s BD-Live servers were brought down completely by the popularity of the disc.
BD-Live is a service that lets Blu-ray players connect over the internet to download additional content, such as movie trailers and enables interactive services such as chatting about a movie. According to most sources, the content is downloaded as soon as a disc is first inserted into the player. Because of the popularity of this release, Paramount’s servers were completely overwhelmed with traffic.
That alone wouldn’t have been a problem, but because this caused the loading of the movie to halt while the content was downloaded lots of people thought the disc itself was defective.
While the idea of live content sounds good, it really makes you wonder what will happen if they decide to pull the plug on the servers hosting the extra content in a couple of years.
Forget about a few years from now: because the want to
show you a traileradvertise a new movie to you, you can’t watch the one you bought. Great marketing, guys! Here’s a hint: preview trailers are something you skip over, not something you waste bandwidth on.
Has the current economic crisis caused you personal debt problems? As a cybercrime researcher I’d like to make one recommendation. If you need help with your debt, please DO NOT turn to Russian spammers who use Chinese domain name registrars to create domains they claim to host in Panama.