Tag Archives: surveillance state

Surveillance state: Private sector discovers privacy

By Christopher B. Daly 

Now comes a campaign from a coalition of high-tech companies who want the government to get out of the business of routinely spying on Americans in peacetime. They are organized under the banner of ReformGovernmentSurveillance.com (What’s the matter? Was the domain name EndGovernmentSurveillance taken?).

The founders include the biggest names in tech and social media in America: 

AOL (maybe I buried the lead: are they still in business?)








According to a full-page ad in today’s NYTimes, the coalition members want the president and Congress to put an end to abuses carried out in the name of national security by the NSA and other government agencies. That’s great as far as it goes, and I welcome them to the movement to control the government.

While they are at it, though, those same companies would do well to honor their own customers‘ privacy and quit trying to pry more data and pics out of us to exploit for gain. Set a good example.


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Charlie Savage dominates NYT coverage

By Christopher B. Daly 

Is there only one Charlie Savage? The New York Times reporter, who patrols the intersection of national security and legal issues, has no fewer than three bylines in today’s paper. Whew! He is on a tear trying to keep up with — and propel — the cascade of disclosures coming out about the apparatus of the surveillance state.

topics-savage-pic-articleInlineSavage, a Harvard grad and former editor of the Harvard Crimson, earned his stripes at the Boston Globe,where he won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting that called out President George W. Bush for his abuse of the presidential power to ignore the will of Congress by issuing “signing statements.”


Here are today’s offerings from Charlie Savage (great by-line, btw).

–Chief Justice Roberts has been packing the secret FISA court with conservatives. Hardly a surprise, but it needed to be documented.

–As part of his continuing coverage of the Wikileaks case involving the court martial of Pfc. Bradley Manning, Savage gives us a glimpse of the military’s approach to justice:

While Major Fein made his arguments, reporters watched the trial on a closed-circuit feed at the media center. Two military police officers in camouflage fatigues and armed with holstered handguns paced behind each row there, looking over the journalists’ shoulders, which had not happened during the trial. No explanation was given.


–Savage also shared a byline with legal correspondent Adam Liptak on a piece about the Justice Dept’s plans to enforce voting rights. (BTW, I think the Justice Dept should just lay back and wait for some racist, right-wing legislature to write some horrible law, then sue them so fast their heads spin. That way, minority voters can see who is really on the side — and who is not.)

UPDATE: Just in the last two hours, Charlie Savage struck again: Turns out, the top Pentagon guy in charge of GITMO is stepping down.




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Filed under Journalism, journalism history, media, New York Times