Quoted from: Truth and Justice For All.
“After yesterday’s reminder of the tendency of legislators to put irresistible names on horrible legislation, here’s another one: “The Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011.” As Julian Sanchez notes over at Cato@Liberty, “What kind of monster would dare be on the record opposing that bill?”
Interestingly, but perhaps unsurprisingly, the bill seems to have little to do directly with child porn or porn peddled to children. Instead, it requires Internet service providers and others on the Internet (e.g., Google) to retain temporary ISP information (i.e., the Internet addresses temporarily assigned to you as you surf the web, send email, etc.) for eighteen months. Since thanks to the Supreme Court authorities may already access that information without encountering any 4th Amendment issues, it means that whatever Federal agency wants to learn what you have been doing can do so via a simple subpoena of which you’ll never receive notice. Oh, and since the data is there anyway, it means your local law enforcement or DAs can accomplish the same thing.
(More, also at Cato@Libery, by Jim Harper:
This isn’t a bill about child predation. It’s a bald-faced attack on privacy and limited government. Congress can move legislation like this, even in the era of the Tea Party movement, because child predation is a taboo subject. The inference is too strong in too many minds that opposing government in-roads on privacy is somehow supporting child exploitation. Congress and its allies use taboos to cow the populace into accepting yet more government growth and yet more surveillance.
Anyone want to bet whether “The Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011” will become law?)
Finally, again from Julian Sanchez:
All things considered, this might start to look like a pretty bad idea: Burdensome on technology companies, harmful to the privacy of the great majority of innocent Internet users, and unlikely to be much use against the most sophisticated cybercriminals. But haven’t you read the name of the bill? Why do you want to protect child pornographers? Sadly, there’s every reason to think this kind of cynical misdirection will successfully intimidate opponents into silence.”