Library records safe under the Patriot Act

An Editorial says Many of the Patriot Act’s provisions, including the more controversial provisions concerning library records and so-called “sneak and peak� searches, do not provide new and unprecedented investigative tools to law enforcement officials. Rather, the Patriot Act allows law enforcement officials to now use tools long available to them regarding organized crime, child pornography, or drug investigations when conducting international terrorism investigations.
Unfortunately, much of the debate regarding the Patriot Act has become so exaggerated and distorted that the thoughtful deliberation which reauthorization of this important law deserves is too often missing.


It should be pointed out that the author of this editorial in the York (PA) Daily Record is REPUBLICAN Todd Russell Platts , who represents the 19th Congressional District of PA, which includes York and Adams counties.

My comment is "big whoop".

It is possible to tap communications between circulation software and the OPAC.It is possible to keylog library computers.It is possible to remotely view circulation computer screens.The Man has many tricks and tools.The Patriot Act is a diversion.

I don't mind that the author is a Republican. Some Republicans say insightful things, just as some Democrats are big fat idiots. I wish more people would listen to political arguments without considering the source. I believe it was (Republican) Arlen Specter that asked, if the USAPA doesn't apply to libraries, and has never been used to obtain library records, how do you explain the opposition to things like the freedom to read act?How certain republicans are able to lobby for laws that allow for searching library records without a need to show probable cause, then claim the laws don't apply to libraries, then oppose a library exception to those laws all at the same time is quite an accomplishment.

I think it was important to point out who the author is because the article makes it sound as if someone on the editorial board of the paper wrote it...and it was actually the viewpoint of the local congressman, who undoubtedly voted to keep the PA intact.

You're certainly right, people from both parties sometimes say dumb things, but that wasn't my point at all.

Is a newspaper editorial board somehow less biased then a politician? An editorial by nature is going to be biased.

Agreed, an editorial by nature is going to be biased.

But this guy not only "editorialized" on the legislation/bill, he also VOTED on it...

Yes, but at least you know that. Do you know how the editorial board of the newpaper voted in the last election?

He really did take a long time in between bouts of writing. That is kinda surprising. You can see his pieces by visiting his site. In journalistic practice, this is quite common. This is what filler is made up of. Whether a paper runs something or not is a decision that has to be made. When I was a working writer we rarely ran such pieces because we wanted to run our own stuff first. If somebody had room to fill in laying out pages is it necessarily problematic to hear from the area's elected representative? There is nothing wrong with that at all and indeed it should be encouraged. It allows for much more of a "record" that can be brought up at election time...

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