The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Random Thoughts


I continue to have trouble and, so, I am writing this "on the fly". The trouble may not be Blogger's fault but since they are providing no feedback, I cannot know.

Lots of fuss over the Patriot Act. To be more specific; over a section of the act which governs how the NSA collects what is referred to as "metadata." Let me assure you that this includes no content whatsoever, just the number calling, the number called, and the duration of the call. Essentially, the same data that the phone companies routinely provide you on your bill or when you ask for details.

My phone company, Vonage, has that data available to me on their website. I have used it a few times to find out what company has robo-called me in the middle of the night. It doesn't provide with the company's name (I find that by Google, usually) but it does give me the number which I then use to register a complaint with Do Not Call... If you have not registered your phone number with them, I recommend you do.

I am not sure what the Libertarians are concerned about but they feel it is a violation of the Fourth Amendment. Which it probably is. Basically, they collect this data and sift through it when they find that one (or both, I guess) of the numbers is tied to a threat to the U.S.

As I said, this data is already collected by the phone companies for what is called "internal use." They sift through the data to determine where they need more, or less, services in general. It is also kept for, as I implied, billing purposes. I am unsure how long it might be kept but the phone companies like to collect data but they do not like to throw it away.

Since I spent many years in the old Bell System, I can say I have found lots of data tied to phone numbers that told a lot about the subscribers. The telcos frown on listening to calls but they also know it is done by employees for entertainment.

That entertainment was the conversations, not the metadata. It is very difficult to listen in on conversations now and I do not think the NSA is listening in for entertainment or anything else.

Just thought you should know.

1 comment:

Tom Sightings said...

Douglas ... Thanks for the perspective.