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How Has Post-9/11 Legislation Affected You? 1212

goldspider asks: "I hope this is received in the spirit it was intended in. In a recent Reuters article, the Internet as a whole has been referred to as 'collateral damage' of the U.S.-led War on Terrorism, because of the perceived loss in privacy and online rights as a result of post-9/11 legislation. I am curious to hear about some specific examples of how this legislation has personally or professionally affected the everyday lives of Slashdot readers."
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How Has Post-9/11 Legislation Affected You?

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  • by Etriaph ( 16235 )
    ...so it hasn't really, sadly enough to say. But I think the even affected everyone on the continent in some way or another.
    • I'm Canadian, and it's affected me a great deal. Slowdows at borders and airports, insame codes of conducts for schools, cancelation of any and all school trips for my school board far almost a year, Many many battles against school admin. have happened because they refused to lower the flag until the next day, and after they suspened ppl who went home because they're relatives worked there and they wanted to see if they were okay, etc. I think that it has effected every North American citizen, and beyond, in ways that they may or may not notice, Because most of us only look for the positives in things, not the negatives, which all of these effects seem to have been...

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Denial of service attacks [westerncourier.com] - are now considered an act of domestic terrorism.

    So I guess that you could say that what used to just piss people off is now considered domestic terrorism. Some people OBVIOUSLY overreact to situations and play on the emotions. I would really like to seem some legislation against PROFITING on 9/11.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      "Some people OBVIOUSLY overreact to situations and play on the emotions

      I agree completely.. Has anyone else seen the Anti-Drug commercials saying that by buying drugs we help terrorists. This angers me since every sack I ever bought has been straight from Mexico. I believe they are just doing this to make drug users feel responsible for 9/11 . There is no need to rehash these memories to make a point especially when they in no way relate to what happened.
      • by sg_oneill ( 159032 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @08:39PM (#4233517)
        Has anyone else seen the Anti-Drug commercials saying that by buying drugs we help terrorists. This angers me since every sack I ever bought has been straight from Mexico.

        Yup. And do you know what the worst thing is?

        Even discussing this sort of stuff can get one branded as "unpatriotic" or "insensitive". Having worked in the media , it was clear that a HUGE chilling effect came over it, even over here in australia.

        Whereas we SHOULD ask questions like "Hey , is this interference in the mid east part of the cause of S/11. Why where we funding the taliban?", we havent been asking that, because any given question can be answered with "SHH! WHERE FIGHTING TERRORISTS! BOW YOUR HEAD IN SHAME!"

        And the cycle goes on... And get's nuttier too. Questioning govt anti-hacker legislation can get one branded as "un-patriotic". ditto for fcking phone tapping legislation, drug legislation, camp X-ray legislation..... Any questioning is..... "unpatriotic"

        So maybe we should give up , hey guys?... Freedom of speech is dead in the water. MIA.

        Those founding fathers would not be impressed with a president who claims "There should be limits to freedom". (Rant ends here)
      • by SCHecklerX ( 229973 ) <greg@gksnetworks.com> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @09:07PM (#4233707) Homepage
        The libertarian party ran an ad about that in USA Today (I think that was it..)

        Check it out:


  • I just paid $60 to ZeroKnowledge [freedom.net] if that's any indication.

    • Re:Well... (Score:3, Informative)

      by bartash ( 93498 )
      I paid to join the EFF (http://www.eff.org/) and the ACLU (http://www.aclu.org/).

      • I joined the ACLU about a month ago. I haven't looked into the EFF enough yet to know if it's worth the donation.

  • Canadian border (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Surak ( 18578 ) <[surak] [at] [mailblocks.com]> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:32PM (#4232416) Homepage Journal
    I live a few miles from the Canadian border. I've been searched at least 20-30 times since September 11 going across to the Casinos in Windsor.

    I'm sick of people saying "Oh, it doesn't bother me because it makes me feel safer." It DOES bother me, and NO, it DOESN'T make me feel safer. If someone wanted to get across the border with explosives or something, they're gonna do it and these stupid spot checks aren't prevent it.

    • This is an example of a badly design security process. It isn't actually making anything more secure. There is a nice piece in the Atlantic:
      http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/2002/ 09/mann.htm

    • Re:Canadian border (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Jucius Maximus ( 229128 ) <m4encxb2sw@snkma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:11PM (#4232800) Journal
      "I'm sick of people saying "Oh, it doesn't bother me because it makes me feel safer." It DOES bother me, and NO, it DOESN'T make me feel safer. If someone wanted to get across the border with explosives or something, they're gonna do it and these stupid spot checks aren't prevent it."

      It is so annoying at the borders. Going to the US with my father driving can be trying because he has one of those huge islamic-reminiscent beards (although he's not islamic) and the US border people always root through the car, look in all your containers, make a mess of everything, and don't put anything back where it was. Rude asholes. Do unto others as you would have done unto you. (If you're not white or with white people, you generally experience great discrimination at the US border crossing over from Canada. Sad but true. It's happenned to my family on numerous occasions, before and after 9/11.)

      On a similar note, a friend of a friend was driving from (Alberta) Canada to the Utah early this year to attend the Salt Lake City Olympics (as a spectator) and one of the guys he was going with was Islamic and wore a turban. They got across the border without too much trouble but on the interstate, there was a period of about 15 minutes where there was a state trooper car front of them, another behind them, and one on the side, totally boxing them in. The troopers backed off eventually, but still, it is unnerving and (both this the first story are) proof that just the way you look can bring about great discrimination from fearful people.

    • Re:Canadian border (Score:3, Insightful)

      by RobinH ( 124750 )
      I just returned to Windsor from working in Detroit. They were doing export checks coming out of the U.S. before going onto the Ambassador Bridge, but it was pretty funny, because I have a tonneau cover on my truck (covers the truck bed), and they just waved me through. What the heck were they checking if not the back of people's trucks? They had other people pulled over with SUV's and cars, but no problem for me... makes me wonder.

      The border guards going into Detroit (from Canada) are the meanest anywhere - it's just a well known fact. A friend of mine had his lunch confiscated because it had an orange in it (supposedly no fruit allowed, though a single orange for personal consumption, it's normally overlooked). Another friend (who's Arabic) was flat out asked, "Have you ever attended a terrorist training camp?" He has a legitimate Visa to work in the U.S. and has gone there every day for years, and now he gets a question like that. It's sad. It's certainly not a legitimate question to ask, and it's only effect is to hurt the innocent.

      I was thinking about the added security at the bridge (before you get on it) to try and keep someone from blowing it up (supposedly to kill Americans?) and it's not very efficient. I figure if someone wants to kill a lot of Americans without actually getting past the border guards, the best place to do it would be the Windsor strip clubs and Bingo halls. In a strip club, you're sure to take out around 5 American bachelor parties, and even the strippers around here are nearly all American.

      I'll just keep praying for dumb terrorists.
      • Re:Canadian border (Score:3, Insightful)

        by ncc74656 ( 45571 )
        I just returned to Windsor from working in Detroit. They were doing export checks coming out of the U.S. before going onto the Ambassador Bridge, but it was pretty funny, because I have a tonneau cover on my truck (covers the truck bed), and they just waved me through.

        You don't have to leave the country to find "security checks" of questionable value. I traveled from Las Vegas to Phoenix and back this weekend. Checkpoints have been set up on each side of Hoover Dam, supposedly to verify that nobody tries to park a car full of explosives on the dam. Each way, I was waved through without stopping...I slowed down to about 5 mph, the rent-a-cop gave my pickup a perfunctory glance, and waved me through. I could've stuck a bunch of C4 underneath, and they would never have caught it. The checkpoints seem to be as useful as getting asked at the ticket counter if you packed your own bags (which they'll stop doing because they finally realized the pointlessness of those questions).

        (OTOH, banning large trucks and buses from crossing the dam is definitely a Good Thing...you can get across much more rapidly. That's something they should've done long ago to alleviate traffic problems; if it took 9/11 to make it happen, so be it.)

        Another friend (who's Arabic) was flat out asked, "Have you ever attended a terrorist training camp?"...It's certainly not a legitimate question to ask, and it's only effect is to hurt the innocent.

        How is that not a legitimate question? What really frosts me is the belief that profiling is automatically a Bad Thing. It's OK if grandmas are strip-searched, teenage girls are wand-raped, and war heroes have their medals confiscated [arizonarepublic.com], but we can't even think about questioning individuals who fit the terrorist profile because they might get their feelings hurt? Fsck that.

        • Until 9/11, the worst act of terrorism in American history was committed by a young white man of Irish descent. And we know all those Irish guys are terrorists, right? Just look at Northern Ireland ...

          So. Did you support profiling young white men of Irish descent? I kinda doubt it.

          Racial profiling -- which, as another poster said, is a two-word euphemism for racism -- is bullshit. The vast majority of people of any given racial, religious, or ethnic group here in America are here for perfectly legitimate reasons and don't plan to kill anybody. Humiliating people on the basis of their skin color or last name is going to do a lot more to increase anger and lead to future conflict than it is to catch the tiny fraction of a percent who are actually terrorists.
  • by havaloc ( 50551 )
    Can't say I've been effected at all. Things haven't changed, we just complain about different things, and have more access to the news that makes us angry.
    • by Sylver Dragon ( 445237 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @08:02PM (#4233249) Journal
      Can't say I've been effected at all. Things haven't changed, we just complain about different things, and have more access to the news that makes us angry.

      I think the lack of change goes deeper than this. Nothing changed on 9/11, nothing. Those who are about to flame, or call me un-american please at least read the rest of the post and I will explain.
      To begin with, terrorists have been attacking the US and its territories for years. Anyone remember the World Trade Center bombing back in '93? The consulate in Tanzinia? The airliner over Lockebe? There's nothing new here, 9/11/01 was simply one hell of a stoke of luck. Whoever coordinated the attack had no way of knowing that the burning fuel dripping down along the structue of the building would cause it to melt and weaken. At most they probably hopped for the two planes to make a couple of big explosions and destroy large sections of the buildings, I doubt that even in their wildest wet dreams did they think that those buildings would collapse as they did.
      We've known for years that there are extremist militants working to cause mass destruction inside the US. I wish I had some statisticts on it, but I would expect, that there are hundreds of terrorist attacks averted every year, we just didn't hear about them until now. When you have people like this spending every waking hour of every day trying to cause mass destruction inside the US, all it takes is 1 stroke of luck and we have a WTC bombing, a Lockerbe, or a 9/11.
      This type of thing will happen again. Like any security hole, its usually found when someone walks through it. It may not be planes into buildings, but it will be something we've not seen before and didn't expect. It will kill hundreds or thousands. All the new laws and secuirty measures, that have been enacted, will do is deter the terrorists from using this same method again and generally make life a little harder for the rest of us. You will never be safe from terrorism, if the dice come up against you in this game, you're dead.
      I just can't wait until this damned anniversary is over with so I can get some news other than "looking back at 9/11". Moreover, I expect to see, once again, a short outporing of patriotism here in America. Its pathetic. People will put thier flags up, stick the bumper stickers on, and by the end of the year it will be life as normal once again. It will be a passing fad, nothing more.
      Yes, there are people that hate everything to do with America. There are those that view our Republic/Democracy/Capitalistic system as the source of all evil. And the quest to push it upon others is making a lot of enemies. Terrorism has been happening and will continue to happen. Nothing changed on 9/11, it was just a hell of a stroke of luck. You can either live in fear, or get over it and get back to living your life.

  • by Soulfader ( 527299 ) <sig@siBALDWINgspace.net minus author> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:34PM (#4232432) Journal
    The source of the list found here [newsday.com]:

    Overview of changes to legal rights:

    By The Associated Press

    September 5, 2002, 11:44 AM EDT

    Some of the fundamental changes to Americans' legal rights by the Bush administration and the USA Patriot Act following the terror attacks:

    • FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION: Government may monitor religious and political institutions without suspecting criminal activity to assist terror investigation.
    • FREEDOM OF INFORMATION: Government has closed once-public immigration hearings, has secretly detained hundreds of people without charges, and has encouraged bureaucrats to resist public records requests.
    • FREEDOM OF SPEECH: Government may prosecute librarians or keepers of any other records if they tell anyone that the government subpoenaed information related to a terror investigation.
    • RIGHT TO LEGAL REPRESENTATION: Government may monitor federal prison jailhouse conversations between attorneys and clients, and deny lawyers to Americans accused of crimes.
    • FREEDOM FROM UNREASONABLE SEARCHES: Government may search and seize Americans' papers and effects without probable cause to assist terror investigation.
    • RIGHT TO A SPEEDY AND PUBLIC TRIAL: Government may jail Americans indefinitely without a trial.
    • RIGHT TO LIBERTY: Americans may be jailed without being charged or being able to confront witnesses against them.
    It's depressing when I show this list and someone says, "Wow, I had no idea it was so bad."

    It's even worse when they say "So?"

    • You are right it is worse when they say so, and I think the biggest thing that has changed since September 11 for me is the fact is now MORE people are willing to give up thier freedoms for security that isn't really there. I fly every week and I don't mind the extra searches and SFO is actually getting speedy, what I do mind is the fact that I feel it necessary to double think everything I email or post online because I KNOW that it is more scrutinized than before. And people just go along with Ashcroft in his quest for justice by denying US citizen rights they are given by our constitution, and if I am not mistaken terrorist don't like Americans because of thier freedoms, like freedom to follow whatever religion you want with out being targeted for it like a lot of Islamic groups are now being watched for, like the freedom to say what you like about the government without fear of retaliation, if we are not careful the terrorist will win by default if they take away our freedoms. If you want to fight terrorism, excersize your freedom of speech and tell Ashcroft to back off!
      • You're quite right, except for your assertion that islamic extremists hate americans because of their freedom. If they did, they'd just try and come to america. They hate america because the american government has done so much harm to the rest of the world in the past 50 years, and it has done so little to help the rest of the world. That and they're insane :)
    • Now available in an easy-to-digest comic form!

      http://archive.salon.com/comics/boll/2001/12/20/bo ll/index.html [salon.com]

      Thanks to Ruben Bolling's Tom the Dancing Bug, of course.

      • Everyone held inside of the US on immigration charges or in X-ray have had forms and options given to them to reveal to media whom they are. Several have feared for the safety of their famalies in Afganistan if they are revealed (Northern Allience is not all that hot), so they have chosen not to.

        Almost all >95% of the people held in immigration charges have been deported at this point. The remaining 5% are people that we really might not want Al-Qeda to know we have (the downside of a cell structure is that while your enemy can not easily get to your membership, neither can you, esp if they are "sleeper cells" like say, the 9/11 crowd was.).
    • Great post...

      One more:

      The Right of Habaes Corpus: Those declared "enemy combatants" are never arraigned, nor have to be told why they are being held.

      You covered this with RIGHT TO TRIAL, but its even worse they you describe.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      That list is completely bogus, Newsweek took different parts of the act out of their context to provide a slanted view -- hell -- the ACLU is more object on this one. :)


      What the hell do they think "criminal activity" is? They don't have to suspect criminal activity just terrorist activity - hrmm, that makes sense?


      Where are the facts on this? If they've secretly detained hundreds of people without charges how does Newsweek know about it?


      Yes, and? When was it legal to leak information regarding national security? Not saying this is necessarily a good thing, but its nothing new...

      Yes, but information obtained by listening to these conversations cannot be used to further criminal investigations.

      Yes, it sucks. A note, this again cannot be used to further criminal investigations.

      This only applies to non-US citizens.

      I'm certainly not saying that the current situation regarding civil liberties is a good thing, but some stories really just blow it up for some headlines.
      • by Loki_1929 ( 550940 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:05PM (#4232732) Journal
        This only applies to non-US citizens."

        I'm sure that's very reassuring to Jose Padilla, the American Citizen who was born and raised in the US, who was arrested in Chicago in May and is now sitting in a US Military brig without any charges against him, and with no access to a lawyer or to his family. Oh wait, he probably can't read this. Hmm....

    • by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:08PM (#4232761) Homepage
      ...if you haven't done anything wrong.

      How many people have heard this statement made? How many examples to the contrary to we need in this world before people stop saying that?

      We used to have due process and the ideal that we're innocent until proven guilty. Starting long before the 9/11 attacks, we've had "anti-drug" law that allowed for the confiscation of money and property without the holder or owner ever being charged with a crime. There are many things wrong with what has been going on and it's not just recently. The problem is that it's only happening to "other people" and when it does happen to you, everyone else assumes you're guilty of something because you're "the other people" this sort of thing happens to.

      All of this is made possible because of the "looking out for number one" anti-community, anti-civil-responsibility attitudes we adopted that led to all sorts of things including our parents spending or inheritance and our government spending [stealing] our social security retirement funding.

      And still people say "So?"
  • security? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Metaldsa ( 162825 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:34PM (#4232433)
    The man with the rubber glove was surprisingly gentle...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:35PM (#4232439)
    Like everyone else, there's the delay...

    But, unlike most people, I use an insulin pump. Most security people aren't keen on seeing someone with a small mechanical device and tubes attached to their body. Also, the insulin, needles, lancet, etc all get a good look through. I get stopped and have my bags inspected pretty much every time I go through. It's made me use air travel as a last resort.
    • by Tackhead ( 54550 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:02PM (#4232698)
      > Like everyone else, there's the delay...
      >But, unlike most people, I use an insulin pump. Most security people aren't keen on seeing someone with a small mechanical device and tubes attached to their body. Also, the insulin, needles, lancet, etc all get a good look through. I get stopped and have my bags inspected pretty much every time I go through. It's made me use air travel as a last resort.

      (Be thankful they don't make you drink the insulin the way they did with those women and their breast milk :)

      How has the legislation affected me? Will, since those drooling $5/hour morons are now drooling $10/hour federal employees, and as a result of my poor ability to take shit from dumb fucks who think that Congressional Medals of Honor, 2-inch GI Joe guns, and bottles of breast milk somehow constitute security threats, but who, as federal employees, can now throw me in jail for saying "WTF?" and can also no longer be fired when they exercise poor judgement, I call on everyone who's had it with the bullshit to...

      Take the car.

      No security goons. No having to remain silent while Guido dildoes your girlfriend's crotch or copping a feel off your mom's bra. (Why yes, it was women in underwire bras who hijacked four aircraft and destroyed the WTC and damaged the Pentagon, how could I have thought otherwise?)

      Plug that laptop with 20G of MP3z into the stereo system and hear your favorite music over the engine noise. (Delayed by a traffic jam? No matter, the music sounds better when you're not doing 80 MPH just to keep up with traffic!)

      Every six hours, pop into a small town and eat a nice hot meal. Screw McDonald's - find a random greasy spoon and eat with the locals. Or surrender to your lusts and have a dozen fresh Krispy Kremes.

      The roadways are still free. You can get there in the same amount of time, with a lot less hassle, and you can see all the things you can't see stuck in a metal tube through a six-inch perspex square.

      See the American countryside in air-conditioned comfort or lower that ragtop and let the breeze blow your hair as you take that twisty 2-lane blacktop through the national park instead of the boring interstate.

      Finally, remind yourself as you stop by each "scenic viewpoint" and snap a few pics with your digicam that there are things about America that are too big for 19 Islamic terrorists - or even a Hill full of idiotic Congressmen and a TSA full of unaccountable bureaucrats and their $10/hour lackeys - to destroy.

    • And this is the bullcrap I was talking about in my post. The cavity searches aren't finding anything. Now, the increased awareness this has caused has casue the CIA and FBI to catch things before they happen. Like they guy they caught with in 2 miles of the whitehouse with an arsenal. Like the freaks with the pic of Osama and all kind of chemicals and bomb making equipment. All of this TSA bullcrap has not done anything to "increase" security. The CIA and FBI actually doing their jobs has. Why were there not A-A batteries by the whitehouse already?
  • Well, I work for a computer security company which was just aquired after a great year of sales after 9/11. Certainly the company would still be doing well, but perhaps not quite as well if people weren't directly interested in security.

    Thus 9/11 directly influenced my bank account, and likely many many other people's, albeit not in the same direction.
  • Mixed emotions (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tigerknight ( 305542 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:38PM (#4232465) Homepage
    I can't think of anything that has directly impacted me as of yet, but there are things about the past year that are very disturbing.

    The biggest thing is that the government appears to be milking the 9/11 event for all it's worth in steps, releasing little tidbits of the story and new footage or new suspects found every time it wants to pass something through the houses without causing too much trouble with the public. Whip the public into a patriotic fervor of such levels that they willingly give up their freedoms in the name of staying safe and 'free of terrorists'.

    Examples would be the Citizen Corps program that Bush started, it's effectively eastern european 'secret police' all over again, call in your neighbor for suspicious activity and get them put on surveilance and possibly carted away. Also the 'Patriot Act' and a few other bills that are aimed at increasing the governments power over individuals, all in the name of 'freedom'.

    So have I felt any solid effects of anything since then? No. Can I see a picture start to form the way they've been manipulating (or attempting to) the public to push forward an agenda? Yes.
  • As far as the net goes with regards to 9/11...I have seen no changes whatsoever.

    Here's the deal for me:

    I don't download music, movies, or software that isn't free, nor do I download porn. (Shocked silence should ensue here I guess. Why look at porn when you have a beautiful woman at home?)

    I don't (moral obligation, lack of caring, whatever you want to call it) do activities that could bring me under suspicion of any government agency. (unles /. is viewed as a radical site--yikes)

    Anyhow, to use a phrase from the late, great DA:

    I'm mostly harmless.

    So, my access has stayed the same. I guess I am just a boring person.

    Yeah, I read the article too....*shrugs* the only thing that has caused me concern has been my apparent need for penis enlargement and breast reduction surgery..at least there are people in the world that think I need both, and want me to make lots of money out of the kindness of their hearts.
  • by SmoothCriminal ( 470234 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:40PM (#4232486) Homepage
    Being of East Indian ethnicity, I do feel the general hate level against the asain population including Arabs/chinese/Indians.

    Though this is a small percentage, it does hurt the people in the recieving end. The economy has made things worse when few people who lose jobs blame it on the H-1Bs.

    There was a restructuring in my company and now the message boards are full of hate.

    I guess the general hate level of the people has increased and also the economy is not helping.

    God Bless America...

  • The effects on me (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    As an airport security worker, I feel as though my obligations have multiplied ten-fold. My responsibilities - especially morally have also greatly increased.

    The only upside to 9/11 for me has been that people now respect me for the job I try to do much more, previously people griped when being security checked but now very rarely does this occur.

    But there are a minority who judge me as though I am poor at my job, especially in light of the current security breaches (check UK news sites) of people managing to smuggle the same weapons as used to hijack the planes on 9/11 on to aircrafts now.

    This despite the fact I do the job as I always have done, believing I am protecting the people - working as hard as I possibly can to make sure the tragic events never occur again.
  • by Cirruz ( 607607 )
    No, I live in Portugal, and if in Portugal authorities can't even regulate car drivers, they just don't care about terrorists!

    Worst, there's a great possibility that none terrorist knows where Portugal is, so we're pretty safe, I think.

    Invisibility kicks ass, Portugal is a stealth country!


  • Let's see...My father is a capitain with USAir. My mother used to work on wallstreet. Many of her friends still worked in the towers; 53 people from her old parish died. Our president turned out to be a facist. airport scenes of the USA look like those from movies such as 'Spy Game' and that Russel Crow movie about the hostage negotiation gone bad. I'm starting to feel like I live in East Germany.
  • by Pollux ( 102520 ) <speter@t e d a t a .net.eg> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:44PM (#4232527) Journal
    I am curious to hear about some specific examples of how this legislation has personally or professionally affected the everyday lives of Slashdot readers."

    I'm sorry, but we've done too much to "commemorate" September 11. What's done is done, and let the dead bury the dead. We should not brand Arabs as guilty and evil. Bush did a poor job handling 9/11. He has killed too many innocent lives in Afghanistan. Iraq should not be an American target. Why don't we just...

    *** Knock *** Knock *** Knock ***

    "Hello? Yes, how can I help you? Yes, I am loyal to my country. What? Hey! Where are you taking me?!?"


    How has it affected me? I'm worried about what I say in public; that's how it's affected me.
  • There have been no changes that signficantly impact anyone one slashdot, unless one has serious ties to Islamists.

    GASP! What is that? How can it be?

    Outside of one alarmist Retuers article, the reality is that for 99.999% of people out there (which leaves approxamitly 2500 people left in america) there has been absolutly zilch change, with the exception of the fact that our airports are not the second most secure (we have a long way to go before we hit the level that is El-Al) and border crossings take longer.

    (And don't give me the argument that Europe's are better. No they are not. I was there, I was scared at how easy it was, and this was a week after Reid decided to prove how lax security was).

    Reality Check... 99.99% of slashdot probably constists of white males/females who are athiest/christian/jewish/hindu/moderate islam, which are viewed to be infidels by certain people. Reminder. THESE GUYS WANT TO KILL US. Plain and Simple. Ignoring the rhetoric, it comes down to that. Frankly, if they catch a guy who has been spending time in Afganistan in the company of the Taliban or Al-Qeda Lock him up for a VLT (Very Long Time).

    If you find someone who is of obvious leanings, has home videos of other peoples kids and Disneyland and plans of the local radation generation, make friggen sure that said individual is not going to cry "Allahu Ackbar" and take a plan into either a) the sea, b) A building, c) a nuclear reactor...

      Which is still no excuse to give up the freedoms that many Americans _ALREADY DIED TO PRESERVE_.

    • Re:No Changes... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Wesley Everest ( 446824 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:30PM (#4232972)
      Well, as dissident in the U.S., I'd say that things have changed quite a bit. I don't know that I would say that the changes are all a result of Sept 11th, though... Sept 11th just oiled the wheels. The Patriot Act is pretty scary stuff, but my impression is that it just legalized existing police practices. Of course, that means that you have less recourse when your rights are violated, and when the police break the law to stifle dissent, they'll probably go further.

      Am I afraid of police throwing me in jail without access to a lawyer or a trial? A little bit. In any repressive society, you learn to adapt, and you hope you aren't the one singled out for special treatment. You have to be realistic about risks, though. I'm more likely to be killed in a car accident than tortured by police, and I'm more likely to be tortured by police than killed by a terrorist. If you are an active supporter of Bush's perpetual war and are a white christian, then you're probably more likely to die at the hands of a terrorist than the police, but more likely to drown in your bathtub than either.

      But the effects of repression go much further than the direct victims. As long as repression against voting-rights activists in the South was successful, all blacks in the South had suffer the daily minor humilations of being second class citizens, as well as make less money for more work due to discrimination and greater power inbalance at work. The most visible effects of the racist violence during the civil rights movement were the bloody bodies and smouldering buildings, but you can bet that millions of blacks had to suffer inferior schools, longer work hours, less access to health care, etc.

      Currently, the repression we are seeing benefits anyone with power. For example, even if there isn't a strike on the west-coast docks, the dock workers will be forced to accept less at the bargaining table due to Bush's threat to replace dock workers with soldiers during a strike. This sort of thing will also have a chilling effect for anyone group of workers daring to stand up for themselves. And if some workers must accept less pay and benefits, it has a way of filtering out to the rest of society, making us all work longer for less.

      Think back to the days of the Soviet Union after Stalin. There were some high-profile cases of political prisoners, but it wasn't necessary to imprison millions to keep everyone in check. Or China after the massacre at Tiananmen square -- a few thousand were killed and probably a few thousand imprisoned, and that was enough to seriously impact a social movement that could have improved the lives of over a billion people. Sure, 99.999% weren't affected directly by the Chinese repression, but that's more an explanation of why the Chinese repression was successful than a justification for why it was acceptable.

  • I am sick of having Joe Idiot Security guard poking his stick or whatever through my gear bag. If the TSA kills my PDA while doing their "search" I want some BUTT! Some may think oh is that all? YES! I paid lots of bucks for my gear and some idiot poking through my bag with a stick and possibly breaking stuff because they think they might find something bad is idiotic. Also, if we are going to do security, then do it the same in every public building. When I went to the Smithsonian, in one museum(American History Museum) I got a stick poked through my bag. In another(Air and Space Mueseum), I had to pretty much go through an airport treatment. Bag in xray and walk through metal detector. Are the Air and Space things more important? Also I am sick of having to remove my laptop from my bag. Does that and other "additional" security make me safer? No it makes me feel paranoid some idiot will drop my laptop on the way to swab it with that thing. Also, I noticed another item has hit the electronic devices ban on airplanes. You can no longer have a GPS device active on a airplane (even though every aircraft probably has one too). Things have changed security wise but has their actually been any security studies done to see if it proves it? I don't think so. At least they won't ask those stupid questions any more (Anyone ask ya to put stuff in your bag, have your bags ever been out of your control....that deal). I mean they were asking those BEFORE 9/11. Let's do something. Let's have the FAA do a study on both PED's and security. Let's see if a GPS, cellphone, radio, laptop actually do cause interferance to the avionics in a typical airliner. Let's see if having your 2 inches of recline during take off and landing makes you safer. Let's see if your tray table being up during take off and landing make you safer too. Let's do something we should have a long time ago...a scientific study before we do policy. It can't be any worse then what we do now.
  • by mooneyguy ( 455024 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @06:56PM (#4232640)
    You think internet interests have been hit hard by post 9/11 legislation, trying being a private pilot these days. Despite the fact that this heinous act was conducted with big planes, its the little ones (like the Mooney I own) that are the first ones to be singled out when it comes time to hand down more restrictive measures. Three days after the attacks, the commercial airliners were back in the air. We had to wait a month, and then we were so awash in new and constantly changing regulations that it was impossible to keep up. Imagine taking off for a two hour flight and having the rules change while you're airborn. It was not unusual for a flight to be legal when you took off and illegal by the time it was over. The onslaught of new rules has been so bad that the FAA will run out of 4-digit numbers with which to label them. Yes, we are rapidly approaching federal notam (notice to airman) number 9999, at which point they will have to start numbering them at 0 again.

    Remember when they announced they were restricting general aviation flights over nuclear power plants? You know what the official notice from the FAA said? The notice said we were forbidden from flying within 5 miles of a power plant, but then gave us nothing better than a vague description of where those plants were located! So we were told we had to remain clear (and if we didn't we would be intercepted by fighters and possibly shot down) but not told the locations we had to remain clear OF: just city names and vague directions, like "15 miles northwest of Anytown, IL". Even the pilot briefers we called on the phone--the very FAA representatives whose purpose in life is to tell pilots about notams--didn't understand the notices. Depending on who and when you would call you would get a different story about what was legal and what wasn't. And the ATC folks were just as confused. The tower at your departing airport would say your flight is okay, but the one at your destination would declare you in violation of some temporary flight restriction.

    Many aviation related business went bankrupt and many more are teetering on the edge as a result of this. The airlines are bad off as we all know, but the small airports are in worse shape. And we are constantly under a cloud of threatened onerous increases in security for our airports: in most cases they are security measures that make no sense at all. Imagine owning property but being subject to a security check before you were allowed to go out to it.

    Lots of folks just gave up flying, some temporarily and some permanently. I'm happy to sacrifice for my country, but the sacrifice should have some value. Most of what I've seen in the way of GA restrictions has been meaningless and senseless. And it's not really the restrictions themselves that bother me, but way in which they have been handled.

    • by rufusdufus ( 450462 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @08:31PM (#4233465)
      I got my license last july. But since I live near Seattle, I was unable to fly for months because the class B airspace over the area was extended to the ground and required instrument clearance.
      I havent flown as Pilot in Command since.
      I did however cross the country with my brother who is a commercial pilot, and we both got lots of flak by airport security for just being around the planes (our own plane!) by the FAA security guards. It is quite unpleasant to have to explain to every block-headed idiot in a uniform that yes, that is my plane, yes, I am a pilot yada yada yada.
      In order to get a pre-flight briefing, you are required to listen to a statement about suspicious people and terrorism. Its is stupid and inane and a real grind to listen to day in and day out.
      When planning our flights, we have to pay special attention to TFRs (temporary flight restrictions) or we can lose our licenses. There are several in the Seattle area which have never been lifted since Sept 11; visual flight rules cannot fly into these areas. This is a total joke since the terrorists planes were jumbo jets flying instrument rules, and those are still allowed everywhere.
    • I'm not a pilot myself--far from it--but one of my most thrilling experiences in an airplane was when I rode [airline censored to protect the innocent] once; I expressed interest in "how the thing works" (kids, don't try this at home) and the pilots actually let me into the cockpit! I got to look out the front window, look at the instrument panels, chat with the pilots . . . it was great. I actually thought about taking flying lessons for a while.


  • This is almost a flame, but I'd say that from the comments I've seen so far, NO ONE has been really affected. The liberal/civil liberties/privacy types say they've been affected, but if you read further down their comments, they'll all say the same thing: "I worry about our government more than I did before". Not "I got jailed for being a member of an Al-Qaida spin-off cell", and not even "my phone is tapped 24/7 because I read Slashdot and use Linux". In short, those American citizens who are saying they are affected by the laws are "comfortably concerned citizens". Although I'm sure some unscrupulous government droid will use these laws to an evil end, no one seems to have been seriously affected yet.

    Of course, a paranoid way of looking at things might be that the reason no one has said anything is that the people affected are either trying to keep a low profile or already are in a top-secret federal prison somewhere....

  • It's a huge issue at Clemson University [eduslash.com]. There, tailgating for football games is a way of life. Up until 9-11, most people would go to the game, then go back to their tailgate spot during half-time (who wants to watch a band?). We'd drink and eat more, then go back to the game. Well, Clemson outlawed pass-outs [tigernet2.com] (funny name, considering all this drinking), which means you can no longer leave the stadium and return, unless of course you buy another ticket.

    This isn't all that important to the quality of life, but it's a good example of an institution making a profit oriented rule and hiding it under the false label of increased security.
  • Well, I'm learning more about fascism, police states, and paranoia...
  • Not sure who the orginal author is as it was sent around at work...

    As the anniversary of 9-11 approaches, Americans and ditto-heads alike are converging
    to reflect upon the tragedy and its consequences. So let's review the state of the nation:

    Bin Laden is still at large
    The anthrax killer is also still at large
    Halliburton and Carlyle are still making money from war
    Saudi Arabia is still an evil influence
    Ashcroft is still shredding the constitution
    Bush the lesser is still an idiot
    The Clintons are still being slandered
    Gore is still being demonized
    The economy is still going south
    The religious right are still insane
    Cancer and AIDS patients are still being criminalized
    Corporate criminals are still getting off
    Health insurance is still grossly expensive
    Drug companies are still raping the elderly and disabled
    Star Wars is still a Bad Idea
    Mother Nature is still NOT HAPPY
    Right wing shills still claim to be patriots
    Mass media is still supine
  • Great article (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fluxrad ( 125130 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:03PM (#4232705) Homepage
    I just thought I'd mention this one since it was a great article.

    There was a letter to the editor in this quarter's issue of "2600."

    In it, this guy was talking about how he was pulled off a plane just before it was about to leave the gate because a flight attendant saw him reading an article in 2600 about vulnerabilities in "Passport." She claimed he was reading a terrorist pamphlet.

    The story of course ends with this guy being rescreened after talking to a few spooks and being let back on the plane. Of course, he said his flight was something like 2 hours late at this point.

    Screw the new laws, I'm more worried about the new public attitudes that are letting this kind of shit go down without so much as a second thought.
  • First of all (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dada21 ( 163177 ) <adam.dada@gmail.com> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:04PM (#4232719) Homepage Journal
    First of all, legislation after 9/11 has affected everyone here the same way that ALL legislation has affected us: by expanding government. The only way to pay for an expanded government is by raising taxes (at some level, either income taxes, payroll taxes, tariffs, sales taxes, or other government added fees).

    This means less of MY money is available to spend on what I want to spend it on. Government steals from me to give to their friends (whether its defense contractors, or just the typical pork barrel recipients).

    I read EVERY bill which passes through my Congressional Rep's hands (they're all visible on the web) and I have yet to see any bill yet that really "protects" us.

    Now, my tax dollars are going to be used to help out Dubya's oil buddies when we go to war against Iraq, a country which has shown no provocation against me personally, neither through threats nor transgressions.

    This is the biggest loss I think we all face. The loss of the right to use our hard earned dollars in ways WE INDIVIDUALLY want to. I could care less what my fellow Americans want to do with their money, but when they steal from me for their assinine programs, that's when I start getting angry.

    Maybe soon I'll be saying "Costa Rica, here I come!"

  • Sure, I'm agitated by the short-sighted legislation sucking away our rights, our myopic foreign policies, go-it-yourself tactics as a nation, etc... But, you know what? My actual life is unchanged. No one I knew died in the terrorist attacks. The lesser freedoms haven't had an inkling of impact on what I do. I don't feel any more safe (the security changes are pointless). I don't feel any less safe either, though. I don't even feel more patriotic. It's just the same. Maybe I'm lucky?

    BRB, John Ashcroft is at my door with a one-way ticket to Camp X-Ray...
  • by helixblue ( 231601 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:10PM (#4232794) Homepage
    The Triangle Mac Users Group [tmug.org] meetings are held at the EPA building here in Durham. ~50(?) Mac geeks toting around laptops talking in a small conference room with a projector. No big deal.

    Now, in order to get into the visitors area of EPA building where the "theatre" is, we have to fill out visitor cards with our name, address, phone number, etc. Then we have to fill out a check-in sheet with the guard (with our name, address, phone number, etc).. This isn't too bad, but a bit unusual for 50 people having to fill in to talk about their hobby.

    The clincher is we've got a 3rd peice of paperwork to fill out now: Our laptop information. Brand, Model, Serial Number, Name, Address, Phone number, etc. Of course, no one has their serial numbers memorized, so it's time to bust out the laptop bags.

    I can somewhat understand since it's in a "government" building - but this is a bit overboard for a hobbyist group meeting. It's worse than going to the airport - picture 50 geeks in line to fill out 3 peices of paperwork, and only 1 of them brought a pen!

    Enough ranting now I guess.. I'm gonna have to recommend we meet in McDonalds next time or something.
  • USA Patriot Act (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:15PM (#4232838)
    Here's an example of how law enforcement is using the USA Patriot Act: A few months ago, the FBI obtained my significant other's name, address and bank information from his ISP then specifically instructed the ISP not to inform him, in violation of its own privacy policy. This would not have been possible before the USA Patriot Act. This information led to a search of our apartment and the seizing of our computers (which have not been returned even though it is two months past the return date specificed in the warrant). Why? Well, the investigation has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism, cyber or otherwise. The USA Patriot Act was invoked because the MPAA filed a complaint with the FBI for alleged copyright violations.

    I'm SO glad this law is being used for its intended purposes. People who have no problems giving up their civil liberties in the name of "homeland security" are sadly mistaken if they think law enforcement has either the ability or desire to restrain themselves from misusing/abusing their new powers.
  • by Wakko Warner ( 324 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:18PM (#4232858) Homepage Journal
    I can no longer mail anthrax. This has effectively killed off one of my favorite pranks.

    - A.P.
  • In New Zealand (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hengist ( 71116 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:19PM (#4232869)
    Before the events of September 12 (as it was here, we're 16 hours ahead of the USA), there was absolutely no security on domestic flights. No x-ray, metal detectors, nothing. There's never been a highjacking here, so we didn't think we needed any. Now, all of the major centres have security checking. The airport security is administered by the government, as well, not private companies.

    In May, I travelled to Honolulu for a conference. I flew directly from Auckland to Honolulu. At Auckland, on the way out, I had to go through two sets of metal detectors and x-rays, as well as a search of my carry-on luggage (although that may have been because I was carrying a plastic poster roll). When I flew from Honolulu back to Auckland, there was just a single metal detector and a single x-ray, and no-one searched my poster roll, which I was still carrying. In short, the security for international flights in New Zealand was much better than in Hawaii.

  • by Ehsan ( 606618 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:19PM (#4232875)
    For an Arab in the Middle East, some aspects of the internet have become frustrating. My credit card no longer receives the smooth transaction process pre-9/11. Half of all the purchases I tried to make through paypal, 2checkout, amazon, and several other vendors have been cancelled due to a "high fraud risk" because my credit card is from Saudi Arabia.

    Last month, I tried e-mailing a friend who goes by the name of Jamal Bin-Laden (not related at all to the terrorists, he's not even Saudi Arabian). He replied not to MY e-mail but to a forwarded e-mail from my Bahraini ISP. Apparently they blocked the e-mail because of his name, read the contents, and when they saw I was only asking him to bring back some tiny M&M's from London (I'm addicted!) they forwarded it to him without even bothering to cover their tracks. There goes online privacy for you.

    And on a related note, I had to cancel my post-grad plans to study in New York after all my Arab friends there came back. Let's just say people weren't very nice to them.

    While this might have nothing to do with American legislation, it's somewhat ironic to see how 9/11 effected everyone negatively, Americans & Terr^H^H^H^HArabs alike.

    May the victims of 9/11, the starved to death children of Iraq, and online rights all rest in peace.
    • I was right with you until you said, "May the victims of 9/11, the starved to death children of Iraq, and online rights all rest in peace." Man, it's clear you think the US has starved children to death in Iraq. If you can believe that, you are the enemy. As you should be well aware, the UN has allowed Iraq to sell all the oil it wants in exchange for food. The Iraqui government has instead chosen to starve some of its own people to make a propaganda point. And there you are repeating it like a nitwit.

      Let's get this right. People who consent to live under tyrany deserve both the tyrany and their own distruction if that tyrany threatens the world. I know this one cuts both ways - we've got to get the tyranical tendencies of our Attorney General and Vice President under control. But so far we're still running a democracy, and forgive us if we get a bit pissed off when idiots like you side with the Iraqui propaganda machine. You do not deserve an American education or any other favors from us while you embrace that sort of - not just idiocy, but a moral stance as bad as Hitler's. You take care of Saddam and the foul swine promoting Wahabbi-ism out of Saudi Arabia, and we'll get back to our naturally angelic natures. Otherwise, Allah have mercy on you.

      • Your statement is the same braindead rhetoric I've heard repeatedly in response to those against Iraqi sanctions.

        In saying that the people of Iraq want to live in the conditions they do, and that you would do something differently if you were there, says to me that you are either an extraordinary activist/freedom fighter/Arnold Schwarzenegger/death wish type hero, or a fucking liar.

        If you believe that FIVE THOUSAND CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF FIVE deserve to die EACH MONTH because of a couple of thicked headed assholes in Iraq AND America, then you are a thick headed asshole. Have some compasion. Nitwit.

  • by MongooseCN ( 139203 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @07:52PM (#4233165) Homepage
    I went through airline security recently and it is a joke. And absolute joke. I've concluded that it's just a placebo to make most ignorant people feel better. Why? Well here are a few things.

    When I was bringing my bag on the airline, I was checked 3 times. Getting onto every flight and my connecting flights. Somehow I triggered a "possible terrorist" flag and had people hand check my luggage. Maybe it was my scruffy beard?

    Anyways when they checked my carry on luggage they ran it through an Xray. They made me take my trekking poles out to see what they were (they are poles for hiking). They didn't care about the pot that showed up as a big grey cylinder in the middle of my pack.

    For my carry on luggage I had a camera lens in a 1Liter drink cooler. It was in there because it's soft to keep it from getting damaged. They never opened it up. I can think of all kinds of stuff to put in there... They never once checked the carry on bag itself. Couldn't something be hidden in the liner of the bag?

    Coming back I had to have my checkon bag checked again, but this airport didn't have any xray machines. They had to hand check everything. I gave the guy my bag, he opened it up and saw a backpack filled with stuff. He asked me "Is this all hiking gear?". I said yes and he just zipped it up and put it on the belt to go into the plane. Luckily that backpack has 75liters of gear in it and not explosives. I was thinking on the whole flight back:

    "Sir is this all camping gear in this backpack?"

    "No it's approximately 75Liters of C4."

    "Hmmm let me check my manual here... explosives, dynamite, C4. Sorry sir but you can't bring C4 on the plane. You must be an Al Queda terrorist?"

    "Why yes I am, I guess you caught me. Take me in."

    If a terrorist wants to bring something on the plane, it's going to get on the plane. The people who setup these security checkpoints are either:
    A. Ignorant.
    B. Setting up a Placebo
    C. Making a boost in their political career.
    D. All of the above.

    You choose.
  • by tenchiken ( 22661 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @08:34PM (#4233481)
    The biggest difference from 9/11 is the simple realization that we no longer live in a safe world.

    The biggest issues pre 9/11 were the condit mess, The fact that Europe was switching into a new currency, etc.

    9/11 has caused changes both old and new.

    American now has the best relations it ever has had with the Russians.

    America and Europe have gone back to their more traditional antagonistic viewpoint that has dominated the 400 year history of this country (with a 60 year break over the last bit).

    The problems of the Islamists have now become much more widly known. Remember all those girls dying in a fire in Saudi Arabaia because the Sadui's would not let the girls go out in public un-veiled.

    Groups like Lashkar Jihadi, RIF, etc are now exposed as the demons they are.

    No massive repatriation has occured of Muslims.

    The government has stopped somewhere between 5 and 10 terrorist attacks on US citizines over the last year.

    Make no mistake. Al-Qeda has ensured that at least the next fifty years will be a throwback to the crusades.
    That is what has changed in America. Compared to that, the Patriot act is nothing.

  • Saddened... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by blankmange ( 571591 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @08:48PM (#4233569)
    Saddened only because of the farcical patriotism that has been 'discovered' due to the attacks...

    Saddened because we blatantly refuse to accept any responsibility for the attacks...

    Saddened because we were not nearly as 'patriotic' after the Oklahoma City bombing - one of own did that, right??

    Saddened because our civil rights are being thrown away for a thin veil of 'security' when anyone can tell you that you are not any safer today that you were a year ago.... It is just as easy today to buy weapons of mass destruction, hijack a plane, buy forged documents, illegally enter the country... nothing has changed except for your lack of freedom..

  • FEEL SAFE? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gnovos ( 447128 ) <gnovosNO@SPAMchipped.net> on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @09:33PM (#4233911) Homepage Journal
    Just flew into San Francisco this afterneoon and got searched *four* times. Now, there is nothing stange about that, becuase I flew one-way and had a lot of connections (got searched at each connection). The strange thing is this: I make a really spicy Habenero sauce, and just for fun, I carry it in a sealed medical waste bag complete with the biohazard flowers and multiple warnings not to open it. Didn't faze the inspectors one bit... Now my sewing kit, on the other hand, that instantly got them into a tizzy and it had to be thrown away.

    So, in case you were unclear on the concept of safety in America:

    Tiny sewing scissors with a blade capable of possibly cutting paper in about three-four tries - DANGEROUS

    Mysterious biohazard bag containing unidentified red goo - NO PROBLEM
  • by Cinematique ( 167333 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2002 @11:03PM (#4234395)
    Only in America would we have personal liberties taken away under the guise of fighting the war on terror, or am I wrong? Surely, I am. Video game ban in Greece, anyone? There are other countries that pull this shit. America is not alone. Anyone that's reading this from Canada, a European Union country, or any other nation, really, thinking that your shit doesn't stink, wake up.

    But here's the real question: Why? What incentives are there for the leaders in OUR government to take away personal liberties? Do they get more money? Do they feel safer? Do they feel as if they're "doing something" instead of standing around "ignoring" an issue? It really boggles my mind. If someone can answer any of these questions for me, you'd earn my utmost respect.

    The thing that really blows my mind is how we have so many new laws as result of the attacks on 9/11. I don't feel any more secure due to them. So why were they enacted? I certainly don't feel any safer knowing that murder is a serious crime if I'm walking around alone at night in a seedy part of a town I've never visited before. And I don't feel any safer knowing airline passengers can't carry toe clippers onto 747s.

    There are two things I have learned from these attacks. Not only have I firmly cemented my anti-racist core, but furthermore, I have found, for lack of better words, that I am a "Logic Elitist." What's this, you ask? I have a strong hatred for those who can't backup their reasoning with sound, logical conclusions and reasoning. I hate stupid people.

    We shouldn't test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power. -PJ O'Rourke
  • interesting report (Score:3, Informative)

    by __aahlyu4518 ( 74832 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2002 @02:57AM (#4235233)
    You can find it here [pewinternet.org]. One of the things mentioned is how America becomes devided about the measures taken after 9/11, and about their privacy.

  • Flying (UK) (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Mr_Silver ( 213637 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2002 @05:52AM (#4235712)
    How has it changed me? Well, after 9/11 airports realised that they had to tighten up security to a point where it was actually half-way decent.

    To do this would cost money that they weren't prepared to cough up.

    So they levied a 7 UKP "security charge" on all flights, this money would then be used to beef up security and not etch into their precious profits.

    Unfortunately, despite everyone coughing up this extra money people still managed to get on planes with bombs in their shoes [bbc.co.uk] and cannisters full of petrol [bbc.co.uk].

    Obviously they're using our money well.

  • by testadicazzo ( 567430 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2002 @05:58AM (#4235729) Homepage
    I've listed all the effects to my family in the states before. What they really wind up doing is killing my freedom of speech. I don't feel comfortable being politically vocal and living in America at the same time. The two big things that terrify me are: I can be held without a trial indefinately if I'm suspected of being a terrorist, and the complacent, bloodthirsty, jingoistic, my country right or wrong (well more to the point, my country can't be wrong) attitude the American public seems to have (based on what I see on the TV, which I hope is hopelessly biased).

    Why? Well back when I was 20 I was in the Marines, and I was against the gulf war. I was pretty vocal about it (freedom of speech) and that got me a lot of flack from the military (that's clear). I got in a discussion with some other guys during lunch and they were telling me "we gotta kill S.H. because he violated this and this international law, yadda yadda". I told them if we were going to kill violaters of international law, we would have to start with Bush for Panama. Clearly a rhetorical argument.

    Still, the Secret service was called, and I spent the night in a holding cell until my lawer came. I had to be photographed, psychoanalyzed, get a handwriting analyses, and had my background and family checked. But they had to let me go, becuase I was able to talk to a lawyer and he said "c'mon guys, it's obvious these charges are a bunch of shit". That happened a lot in those days, me getting arrested for a day and released without trial because the charges were just meaningless. They did this to hassle me and to keep me from expressing my opinion to people who might listen and change theirs. Noboddy, and I emphasize, Nobody, really thought I had threatened the presidents life. It was just a charade.

    What's changed? Now they don't have to let me speak with my lawyer, and they can keep me indefinately. That has terrorized me!

  • Well known methods (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Piha ( 607760 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2002 @06:34AM (#4235809)
    I'm from a former communist country and this whole thing makes me unconfotable. Not the terrorist, but recognizing the methods the US goverment is using. They just point to a such a familiar direction. Although I believe they will never manage to reach anything near the shit we had here, they still have quite a lot of inertia and damage is getting bigger every day.

    Remember, of all the emotions FEAR is the most difficult to get rid of.

    Here is my own little experiance of this. Even a dosen years after the communism fell, I still get nervous when crossing a border to a neighbouring country. And now it only takes me showing about enough passports or IDs for all the passingers in my car to the border cop (they usually don't check them). This is a pure remnant from when I was a kid and had experienced border crossings in a tense atmosphere.

    Guess who were the people in former communist counties made affraid of before being told to act patriotic and encouraged to spy on each other? .snaciremA eht uoY
  • by shren ( 134692 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2002 @08:01AM (#4236045) Homepage Journal

    In the 80's every press article about drugs rose straight to the front page to give me the impression that I'm surrounded by drug dealers. In the 90's every press article about school violence rose straight to the front page to give me the impression that I'm surrounded by homicidal teenagers. There was a brief break in there somewhere where I was scared OJ was going to kill me. Now we're in the naughts or whatever the hell you want to call it, and every press article about terrorism rises straight to the front page to give me the impression that I'm surrounded by terrorists.

    It's all crap. One incredibly shocking event later (9/11, colombine... what was the news maker in the drug war? probably stars dying from drugs or the violence in Columbia) and the press does a Gilligans Island bit and they go from a three hour story to a multi-year obsession with the same topic. If you want to see flocking behavior, don't watch the birds, watch the press. Canada and the US had about the same levels of drug use in the 80's, but it was first on the American list of problems and somewhere in the twenties for Canada. Why? The press. Or maybe the Canadians have some good sense.

    The ironic thing is that if you're reading for content, reading to try to figure out major trends in the world, the press was more informative about terrorism before 9/11 than after. Before 9/11, genuinely important terrorism-related news was the only news that would make the papers. If you saw terrorism in the news, it was a big deal - the government had thwarted something major or there had been an embassy bombing. World changing stuff. Now, if it has a terrorism angle it's front page material - even if the angle is something like "a man who might be a terrorist might have been caught at the airport. he might have had a nail file. there might be more news at 11." By and large each terrorism story is space filler in a space that has a proverbial "reserved for terrorism related news, regardless of if there's news or not" stamp on it.

    It's like wheat and chaff. When it comes to terrorism, the press prints both these days.

    Oh, well. At least the fact that our civil liberties are being used like an inflatable sex toy is coming to light. And, who knows? Five years down the road, something else Really Bad will happen and the press will be obsessed with something else. We should have a betting pool on the next big press fad. Personally, I'm predicting it'll be mega-storms caused by climate change. Some kind of giant hurricaine will level a nation to the dirt, and the press will drop terrorism like yesterday's news - which it already is.

Radioactive cats have 18 half-lives.