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NSAs Big Surprise: Govt Agency Is Actually Doing Its Job
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tjensen846
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tjensen846,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/4/2014 | 11:14:27 AM
George III
No doubt there were colonists who believed that King George III was "doing what [he] believed to be in the best interests of the country, as well as what is morally and legally right." 

But they were wrong too.
DOUG01
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100%
DOUG01,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/4/2014 | 10:23:09 AM
Missing the obvious
In addition to the excellent points already posted, you've overlooked the obvious.  People who are upset with Target have protested by not buying from Target.  Target revenue is down some 40% since the credit card theft.  When people vote with their money, the effect is immediate.  People cannot quit buying from NSA, so there is no alternative but to protest and contact their government representatives as the author suggests.  When people vote at the polling place, or contact their senator/representative, they do not get immediate action, partly because they don't have enough money individually to influence congress. Their influence is very small unless the congressman is flooded with millions of phone calls and emails.  This requires massive organization, which most individuals do not have time for.  Even with a massive campaign that influenced members of congress, change would take months or years.  The only group who could have an immediate effect on congress is the large corporations who donate huge sums of money to finance congressional election campaigns.  If  big business was really upset, they could easlily and rapidly initiate change in NSA policy by threatening to withhold election campaign funds or threaten to suppport another candidate.
GeoffreyL842
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GeoffreyL842,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/4/2014 | 10:03:38 AM
False dichotomy
>Nor does there seem to be any public outrage toward the criminals

>who stole the credit cards from Target or who committed similar thefts...

This is an example of several logical fallacies.  The first is FALSE DICHOTOMY-- what you are presenting is not an either/or choice.  The worse one, though, "ARGUMENT BY IRRELEVANCY" (commonly known as "Red Herring").  Basically, you're trying to distract people from their quite reasonable objections to the NSA by bringing up a completely different subject.  Your argument boils down to "look, here's something else!  Squirrel!"

A third, somewhat more subtle logic flaw here is categorization error (commonly called "apples and oranges.")  The Target Hackers don't claim to be working for the government that (in principle) I elected, nor do they claim to be doing their bad things with a claim that they are benefitting me, nor are they subject to public pressure.  They are criminals. Are you are putting forth the premise the NSA are criminals, and thus the NSA and the Target Hackers are in a common category, but the Target Hackers are WORSE criminals? 
geriatric
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geriatric,
User Rank: Moderator
4/4/2014 | 8:26:14 AM
Not Doing the Job You Think
Your argument falls flat when one looks at the Boston Marathon bombing. There was an abundance of evidence to raise enough red flags on the perps. The NSA didn't see them for one simple reason - that's not who they're looking for.
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