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[mob] [Fwd: FC: SF Weekly columnist suggests surveilling John Poindexter at home]
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: FC: SF Weekly columnist suggests surveilling John Poindexter at
Date: Mon, 02 Dec 2002 21:42:24 -0500
From: Declan McCullagh <[email protected]>
To: [email protected]
CC: [email protected], [email protected]
Previous Politech message:
"Transcript of Pentagon briefing on Poindexter's 'TIA' program"
Calling All Yahoos
Worried about what John Poindexter's up to as federal information
czar? Call his home number and ask.
BY MATT SMITH
I learned, Iran-Contra
conspirator Adm. John Poindexter had been made head of a Pentagon
division that would compile a vast database of every financial,
medical, employment, school, credit, and government record for every
American, so that law enforcement and spooks might better spy on us.
Still, there's always a bright side: Perhaps Adm. Poindexter may be
able to also use his new database as a force for good, to divine
exactly why America has gone so terribly, terribly wrong.
Optimistically, I dialed John and Linda Poindexter's number -- (301)
424-6613 -- at their home at 10 Barrington Fare in Rockville, Md.,
hoping the good admiral and excused criminal might be able to offer
some insight. A pleasant-sounding woman I think might have been Linda,
the former Episcopal priest and now effusive Catholic, answered the
I urge modern California founding fathers and mothers to embark on a
similar campaign of social impropriety: Call Poindexter's home number,
all of you, several times a day. If you get Linda, ask about her
conversion from Episcopal priesthood to Catholicism; if you get John,
ask why he needs our tollbooth records.
For those of you revolutionaries with private investigator friends,
ask for even more sensitive information on Reagan's former national
security adviser. I'd be glad to publish anything readers can
convincingly claim to have obtained legally.
The SF Weekly's column by Matt Smith in the Dec 3 issue points out
that there may be some information that John M. and Linda Poindexter
of 10 Barrington Fare, Rockville, MD, 20850, may be missing in their
pursuit of total information awareness. He suggests that people with
information to offer should phone +1 301 424 6613 to speak with that
corrupt official and his wife. Neighbors Thomas E. Maxwell, 67, at 8
Barringon Fare (+1 301 251 1326), James F. Galvin, 56, at 12 (+1 301
424 0089), and Sherrill V. Stant (nee Knight) at 6, may also lack some
information that would be valuable to them in making decisions --
decisions that could affect the basic civil rights of every American.
Some people are suspicious that the degenerate Poindexter's Total
Information Awareness system will be used to harass and track the
activities of people who some significant fraction of society disagree
with. They fear a replacement of today's general tolerance (and
official blindness to one's Bill-of-Rights-protected activities such
as speech and association), with specific harassment of those whose
names pop up in the database. Such harassment of people who are not
reasonably suspected of criminal activity would destroy much of value
in our society, such as the presumption of innocence and the "live and
let live" philosophy that encourages diversity. Offering dissidents
"a death of a thousand cuts" by constantly harassing them and denying
them the privileges of ordinary life would be far worse than charging
them with a (bogus) crime, which they could clear up merely by
demonstrating their innocence in court.
It would be good to have an early public demonstration of just how bad
life could become for such targeted citizens. While ratfink's system
is probably not working yet, and a large part of it is classified,
much of it can be manually simulated for demonstration purposes.
Public records can be manually searched and then posted to the net by
people who happen to be looking there for something else. Many
Internet public records search sites also exist; try searching for
"People finder". (Matt Smith at [email protected] has offered
to "publish anything that readers can convincingly claim to have
obtained legally".) Photographs and videos of the target, their
house, car, family, and associates, can be made and circulated to
demonstrate facial recognition techniques.
Employees at various businesses and organizations such as airlines,
credit card authorizers, rental-car agencies, shops, gyms, schools,
tollbooths, garbage services, banks, taxis, honest civil servants and
police officers, and restaurants could demonstrate denial of service
to such targeted people. A simple "We won't serve YOUR KIND OF
PEOPLE" would do, as was practiced on black people for many decades.
More subtle forms of denial of service are possible, such as "You've
been 'randomly' selected as a security risk, I'll have to insist that
[some degrading thing happen to you]". Or merely, "I can't seem to
get this credit card to work, sir, and those twenties certainly look
counterfeit to me."
Those with access to DMV and criminal records databases, credit card
records, telephone bills, tax records, birth and death and marriage
records, medical records, and similar personally identifiable
databases could combine their information publicly to assist in the
demonstration. This is how TIA is intended to work -- the government
would get privileged access to all these databases, access that the
rest of us do not normally have. But some of us have access to
various of these databases today, and can demonstrate how the TIA
system might work.
People who associated closely with such a targeted individual, such as
their families, relatives, friends, neighbors, protective secret
service agents, and business associates, might find themselves swept
up in the information dragnet. Such a demonstration would graphically
reveal the societal dangers of deploying such systems on a wide scale
against a large number of citizens -- preferably early enough that
such a deployment could be prevented, rather than reversed after major
harm was caused.
Even if some of the information that people end up revealing or using
about such targeted scumbags is incorrect, such a public demonstration
would highlight the damaging effects that incorrect database
information can have on innocent peoples' lives, when used to target
them for harassment without due process of law. When this happens to
innocents under classified or secret systems such as the No-Fly lists,
the public seldom finds out about it.
All in all I think such a demonstration would be highly educational,
as well as newsworthy and entertaining.
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