Angry Robot

Current Situation roundup

Is there any point in wringing one’s hands over the USA Act? It’s going through, whether or not you like police black-bagging your home and carnivoring your email without even thinking about getting a warrant. Similarly, here in Canada where we thought the liberals were in power, we get this thing, which US news media can only describe as “sweeping.”

It’s enough that we worry about fanatics distributing biochemical surprises – do we really have to worry about the RIAA terrorizing us as well? If that seems like an abuse of the term “terrorist,” that’s exactly the issue. What is being broadly referred to as computer hacking is now considered a terrorist act. However, the RIAA wants the ability to launch denial of service attacks on copyright-infringers. It didn’t work. Sweet baby Jesus, what a bunch of opportunists.

Similarly, in Canada there is some concern that anti-globalization activists may be considered terrorists under the new act, and thus could be treated to a bunch of exciting new law enforcement techniques. (Torture, anyone? Coming soon!) While the above-linked government page soothes:

The definition is carefully circumscribed to make it clear that disrupting an essential service is not a terrorist activity if it occurs during a lawful protest…

that bastion of leftist resistance, the Canadian Bar Association, complains heavily.


That’s enough of the Current Situation for a couple weeks, isn’t it? Without even bringing up the joy of patents or Gulf War Syndrome.