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View Full Version : Obama's Internet Killswitch



bandshell
28-06-2010, 07:19 PM
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Leo
28-06-2010, 08:23 PM
whoa, there. even if this is true, it isn't an "obama" thing, though, is it? looks like lieberman (who fewer and fewer people take seriously) proposed it, giving the president certain powers. highly unlikely to be taken seriously, can't imagine this ever even coming close to passing. and as i said, i don't recall obama ever talking about it.

Dr Awesome
28-06-2010, 09:51 PM
Fundamentally though, why would you actually want to shut down the internet in a national emergency?

mixed_biscuits
28-06-2010, 09:57 PM
Fundamentally though, why would you actually want to shut down the internet in a national emergency?

Because it's a distraction?

grizzleb
28-06-2010, 10:02 PM
Fundamentally though, why would you actually want to shut down the internet in a national emergency?
Because it stops people from exchanging information and increases confusion amongst the populus, allowing for the easy rounding up of people in sports stadiums to be mass-murdered?

massrock
28-06-2010, 10:03 PM
Fundamentally though, why would you actually want to shut down the internet in a national emergency?

Not any old national emergency, a national cyber emergency. Whatever that is.

massrock
28-06-2010, 10:09 PM
Because it stops people from exchanging information and increases confusion amongst the populus, allowing for the easy rounding up of people in sports stadiums to be mass-murdered?

I'm not a big sports fan myself but surely that would be going a bit far?

blacktulip
29-06-2010, 08:39 AM
I'm not a big sports fan myself but surely that would be going a bit far?

God-damned liberal!

Dr Awesome
29-06-2010, 11:04 AM
Obviously it depends somewhat on what the plan actually is, as to how complete the blackout is.

However, in a major terrorist attack or an attack by another nation on the continental United States, shutting down the majority of the internet would be precisely the worst thing to in terms of economic impact.
This seems self defeatist when the justification I found after a brief google (http://www.techeye.net/internet/obama-given-power-to-shut-down-the-internet#ixzz0sEZuZILn)was "The Senate has tried to downplay these concerns by saying that “only specific systems or assets whose disruption would cause a national or regional catastrophe would be subject to the bill's mandatory security requirements.”

So... because you're scared of cyberwarfare you're going to turn the internet off?
Surely it'd be better to use these over-arching powers and fuck with the aggressors communications networks (which is easy against a sovereign state, you could fuck up there TLD resolution, and perhaps use QoS or firewalls to blast any traffic headed for or out of said country traversing your network - all without so much as a cruise missile), but somewhat harder against terrists.
It should be worth mentioning that most recently China looked at getting it's own Domain Name system, effectively creating a new internet - it's an idea that's been floated in the past but never (commercially) successfully implemented.

The other option would be to physically turn off or unplug the data centres at the ends of the various cables joining the United States to Europe and Asia/Pacific, along with any public/commercial satellite relays, and turning off any root domain controllers which reside in the US (I think all the high ones do). I can't see what you'd achieve though, despite the US Government having alternate means of communication.

Mr. Tea
29-06-2010, 01:22 PM
Let's not forget that American presidents since the '50s have, strictly speaking, had the ability to destroy the whole world (as have the premiers of the USSR/Russia and China, of course) if they really wanted to.

I'm sure in practice it's a bit more complicated than this one guy carrying around a briefcase with a big red button in it, but all the same, it's worth putting things like this in perspective of likeliness.

Sick Boy
29-06-2010, 01:43 PM
Let's not forget that American presidents since the '50s have, strictly speaking, had the ability to destroy the whole world (as have the premiers of the USSR/Russia and China, of course) if they really wanted to.

I'm sure in practice it's a bit more complicated than this one guy carrying around a briefcase with a big red button in it, but all the same, it's worth putting things like this in perspective of likeliness.

I see what you're saying here, but the fact world leaders haven't destroyed the whole world yet isn't much of a good argument as to why anyone should protest them having the ability to. It seems a bit silly to only legimitize the likelihood of something like that happening after it has already happened.

With powers like these it's best to assume that they are going to use them tomorrow and then do everything you can to make sure they don't get them.

craner
29-06-2010, 02:01 PM
Joe Lieberman is not a neoconservative.

Mr. Tea
29-06-2010, 02:17 PM
I see what you're saying here, but the fact world leaders haven't destroyed the whole world yet isn't much of a good argument as to why anyone should protest them having the ability to. It seems a bit silly to only legimitize the likelihood of something like that happening after it has already happened.

With powers like these it's best to assume that they are going to use them tomorrow and then do everything you can to make sure they don't get them.

Yeah, that's fair - what I was getting at is that just because these powers exist in theory, their use is sufficiently unlikely that most sane people don't have their own nuclear shelter - but then, it was pretty fucking touch-and-go for a few weeks in 1962, wasn't it?

Leo
29-06-2010, 02:43 PM
Joe Lieberman is not a neoconservative.

formerly a democrat, now technically an independent, but he sure embraced many a neo-con-like view during the last election. maybe i'm jaded to US political gamesmanship or just naive, but it seems like fearmongering from the "the-internet-is-a-series-of-tubes" crowd.

Mr. Tea
29-06-2010, 03:07 PM
It's all about money.

http://media.theonion.com/images/articles/article/10476/money_0_jpg_445x1000_upscale_q85.jpg

Leo
29-06-2010, 03:42 PM
They won't destroy the world, just yet. It's all about money.

yeah, really. forget about obama, goldman sachs is the one who calls the shots.

Mr. Tea
29-06-2010, 04:15 PM
The name 'Goldman Sachs' is brilliant, it's like some horrible anti-Semetic stereotype of the Grasping Jew from a hundred years ago, only...real.

Dr Awesome
29-06-2010, 10:39 PM
Let's not forget that American presidents since the '50s have, strictly speaking, had the ability to destroy the whole world (as have the premiers of the USSR/Russia and China, of course) if they really wanted to.

Yes, but that's old news - and pales in insignificance compared with the almighty doomsday device that would render whole worlds offline, destroy thousands of millions of dollars worth of niche pornography and disconnect people from social networking websites. The de-inter-netter.

FYI (http://www.turnofftheinternet.com/).

slowtrain
30-06-2010, 06:59 AM
But surely there are plenty of people whose whole livelihoods require the internet...... That surely counts for something?

padraig (u.s.)
30-06-2010, 08:29 AM
formerly a democrat, now technically an independent, but he sure embraced many a neo-con-like view during the last election.

Oliver's right tho. those have always been his views, a foreign policy ultrahawk combined w/fiscal & social views that are, if not left, centrist (American centrist, that is, which is European center right or simply right). there's nothing "neo" about it simply b/c he changed labels. so, not a neocon; OTOH, certainly a huge a**hole, even for a Senator, which is saying something. anyway (pedantry alert), neocon literally refers to people like Kristol, Horowitz, etc, as well as Reagan/Bush hatchetmen like Abrams & Wolfowitz, and so on - as well as C. Hitchens, however vehemently he may deny it - former (self-professed, at least) leftists who've shifted to the right, the so-called "mugged by reality" bit.

it goes w/o saying that this bill - at least the parts referring to the so-called kill switch - seems like an absolutely f**king terrible idea. like most things involving Joe Lieberman.

Mr. Tea
30-06-2010, 11:51 AM
Yes, but that's old news - and pales in insignificance compared with the almighty doomsday device that would render whole worlds offline, destroy thousands of millions of dollars worth of niche pornography and disconnect people from social networking websites. The de-inter-netter.

FYI (http://www.turnofftheinternet.com/).

If Twitter, Facebook etc. suddenly went offline all over the world, I like to think the inevitable mass suicide epidemic would have a sort of Darwinian cleansing effect on humanity.

Good to see turnofftheinternet.com is still there!