Swartz faced 13 counts under the 1984 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) and, if convicted, could have faced 35 years in federal prison and a million-dollar fine.
The anti-Hagel hysteria carries a message different from the one getting all the attention: If Hagel is “out of the mainstream” of foreign-policy thinking, the range of permissible thinking is more narrow than many have suspected. True, Hagel has been critical of some of the overseas military policies pursued by Presidents George W. Bush and Obama, but to suggest he is a radical critic of U.S. militarism and hegemony is absurd.
Much of what government does seems unfathomable until you remember one thing: the politicians think the people are morons.
Take the latest example: the effort to avert the “fiscal cliff.”
We would do the young victims of the Newtown shootings no honor by frantically enacting futile restrictions on freedom.
It may be satisfying to “do something.” But two things ought to be kept in mind. First, liberty is never more in peril than when politicians sense that the people want them to do something — anything. Second, a false sense of security is worse than no security at all.
When a state passes a right-to-work law, as Michigan did this month, employers in that state can no longer agree to require workers to pay union fees as a condition of employment. Supporters of right-to-work see it as a way to protect workers from being forced to support unions against their will.
If the “fiscal cliff” controversy isn’t enough to convince you this government is one big fraud, what will it take? The budget mess was delivered to us by the same people who every step of the way claimed to be acting in our best interest. Let that sink in. Every president and every member of Congress assured us that their fiscal policies would produce prosperity and employment.
Thomas Jefferson said a revolution every 20 years would be a good thing. Regardless of what one thinks of that, perhaps a little constitutional crisis every now and then would have its benefits.
David Petraeus has fallen — but not as he should have. Before being disgraced by an extramarital affair, the retired four-star general and ex-CIA director should have been shamed out of public life for his horrendous military record in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Thank goodness the tedious presidential campaign is over. It was enough to put a caffeine freak into a coma. If all you cared about was the horse race, you missed how anemic the past year was. Rhetoric aside, the differences between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney were virtually inconsequential; big government was never in doubt. That being the case, Obama’s four-year record went largely unexamined.
If you wonder what life would be like without a particular government agency, it is not enough simply to subtract the agency from a picture of our current world. That would imply a rather disparaging view of the human race. If there were no FEMA, would people just sit around in the rubble for the rest of their lives? Or would they do something, learn from their experience, and take precautions to minimize damage in the future?