Say, let's release browsing history of pols voting to rescind internet privacy

This is pretty funny, at least for the first few minutes you think about it.

A Republican Congress voted this week to rescind personal internet privacy protections enacted just six months ago and President Trump indicates he will sign the legislation. That’s not the funny part.


Critics suggest this will enable internet providers to collect vast volumes of personal information on any American’s Internet use, including search and browsing histories. And to peddle it, presumably to commercial operators eager to sell you stuff. Have you noticed those eerie pop-up ads about things you just perused on Amazon? OK, that’s not at all funny.

In fact, there’s mounting outrage about the GOP move. “It does provide an opportunity for President Trump,” the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America said. “He can show that he is on the side of the people by vetoing this measure.”

What is funny about the latest undoing of a last-minute Obama maneuver is the American rebel spirit that’s prompted several individuals now to raise thousands of dollars online. As Misha Collins of Los Angeles put it, “Since Congress has made our privacy a commodity, let’s band together to buy THEIR privacy.”

He like others proposes purchasing the personal internet files of everyone in Congress who voted for this. And putting all of it online for maximum embarrassment. Or so they promise. That would be rich seeing that data, wouldn’t it? Not mine, but theirs.

The new rules would have gone into effect later this year and would have included such data as your complete web-browsing history, your app usage and your tracked location.

Now, let’s be honest. Alexa and those grocery store membership cards already collect considerable information on your inquiries and purchasing habits, right down to the brand and size jar of pickles you prefer, the frequency of your liquor buys and the item code and quantities of certain personal products you had scanned. But you’ve at least tacitly agreed to that by signing for the membership and get rewarded with discounts.


Our national addiction to political hypocrisy aside, why should voters be suspicious that any member of Congress has accessed anything online that would prove embarrassing if made public? Most of them are just like us, right? Perfectly normal American males with the usual masculine interests — NFL, NBA, MLB. Maybe hot cars. What else is there to browse anyway?

Our browsing history would be non-scandalour, trust us. Unless you count reading the tragic recent history of the Cleveland Browns. And a cat video. All right, all right, full disclosure. I did click on two CNN webpages. But only for professional reasons. Oh, and maybe on the site of a certain failing New York newspaper the president says he doesn’t like.

Not that I need any internet privacy protections, you understand. But I’d still rather have them. On principle.

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