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Steve Gregg

Contrary to what panicky lefty editors at the Daily proclaim, the government is not reading your email. However, it is using computers to mine for words used by the bad guys on social networking sites and online media, ie public media. Your private email is still private. Your public websites are fair game for anyone to read and analyze.

Wannabe jihadis tend to be stoopid and are likely to write their violent aspirations on online chat rooms where like-minded Muslim imbeciles are likely to read them. Many a jihadi has been caught this way. Some private citizens hunt jihadis on chat rooms as a hobby and turn them over to the authorities.

Much of the international telecommunications traffic comes through the big switches in the US. Such communication, being foreign in origin, is not protected by the Constitution and is thoroughly searched by supercomputers of the NSA for words and phrases used by jihadis plotting terror. That has worked splendidly as well.

The reason to search for words like "Al Qaeda" and "car bomb" is self evident. Other words are less obvious, like "pork" and "swine," which are used by racist Muslim terrorists as code for white people, their intended victims.

Reasonable people might conclude that seaching information made public to identify terrorists and stop them before they kill anyone, well, maybe that's a good idea. Unfortunately, no reasonable people work for the Iowa State Daily, which maintains a nearly perfect opposition to any action that could thwart terrorists from striking America. Why?

Just to clarify, I'm not a lefty. But as to:

"Reasonable people might conclude that seaching information made public to identify terrorists and stop them before they kill anyone, well, maybe that's a good idea. Unfortunately, no reasonable people work for the Iowa State Daily, which maintains a nearly perfect opposition to any action that could thwart terrorists from striking America. Why?"

What actions are being opposed in articles that would thwart terrorists? I/m not doubting that those articles exist, only asking for the direction to some of those articles so I can read up.

The question of public information is still an unknown quantity when it comes to the Internet for lack of full legal ruling on social media and whatnot as private of public; a big issue in workplaces regarding bosses asking for access to employees pages. Also, government officials have read personal emails stored on Google and Hotmail and the like thanks to the Stored Communications Act; though that was later ruled unconstitutional. Nevertheless, that demonstrates that government officials are willing to use whatever loophole they can find in privacy law to dig into a person. Even if this is for the good of our country, I have a problem with Constitutional over-reaching.

Steve Gregg

Gabriel,

In previous columns, you have supported Occupy Wall Street and marijuana use. In previous posts, you have claimed that conservatives are inherently racist and that Americans are too consumerist. Those sound like lefty positions, don't you agree?

Reading public websites is hardly government intrusion any more than when the government reads local papers or TV. This is public information, not private information.

Jihadis are not born overnight. They evolve. Many tend to be chatty as they evolve and make displays of bonding with their radical Muslim community. They show up in community websites, Facebook, chat sites, YouTube, et al. Then, when they commit to violent jihad, they tend to disappear from public view, although some can't resist maintaining a residual public presence.

Reviewing and analyzing such public info can identify radical cells and the jihadis in them. Perhaps you've noticed how many wannabe jihadis are set up by FBI sting operations. Very often, the FBI finds them because they brag about their jihad on the Internet on a public site. They're that stupid.

When you mischaracterize such public monitoring as an violation of privacy, it's an attempt to disable our defenses against terrorists. The correct thing to do is to exploit everything that radical Muslims publish on the net and use it to defeat their plots to kill innocent people.

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