Democrats have a file on you

One of the reasons President Obama was re-elected, according to observers, is the way his campaign made use of data-mining and other on-line resources.  This article by Craig Timberg and Amy Gardner in the Washington Post details what the campaign did and says how other Democrats are trying to get their hands on the database that was compiled.

But when you read the article, do red flags about privacy keep coming up?  I wonder if people who are worried about the information Google collects on each one of us has a similar concern about the information the Democratic party collects on each one of us.  And if the commercial use of this kind of information is problematic, isn’t the political use even worse?

If you voted this election season, President Obama almost certainly has a file on you. His vast campaign database includes information on voters’ magazine subscriptions, car registrations, housing values and hunting licenses, along with scores estimating how likely they were to cast ballots for his reelection.

And although the election is over, Obama’s database is just getting started. . . .

The database consists of voting records and political donation histories bolstered by vast amounts of personal but publicly available consumer data, say campaign officials and others familiar with the operation. It could record hundreds of pieces of information for each voter.

Campaign workers added far more detail through a broad range of voter contacts — in person, on the phone, via e-mail or through visits to the campaign’s Web site. Those who used its Facebook app, for example, had their files updated with lists of their Facebook friends, along with scores measuring the intensity of those relationships and whether they lived in swing states. If their last names sounded Hispanic, a key target group for the campaign, the database recorded that, too. . . .

All Democratic candidates have access to the party’s lists, which include voting and donation histories along with some consumer data. What Obama’s database adds are the more fine-grained analyses of what issues matter most to voters and how best to motivate them to donate, volunteer and vote. . . .

The database powered nearly everything about Obama’s campaign, including fundraising, identifying likely supporters and urging them to vote. This resulted in an operational edge that helped a candidate with a slim margin in the overall national vote to trounce Romney in the state-by-state electoral college contests.

Obama was able to collect and use personal data largely free of the restrictions that govern similar efforts by private companies. Neither the Federal Trade Commission, which has investigated the handling of personal data by Google, Facebook and other companies, nor the Federal Election Commission has jurisdiction over how campaigns use such information, officials at those agencies say.

Privacy advocates say the opportunity for abuse — by Obama, Romney or any other politician’s campaign — is serious, as is the danger of hackers stealing the data. Voters who willingly gave campaigns such information may not have understood that it would be passed on to the party or other candidates, even though disclosures on Web sites and Facebook apps warn of that possibility.

Chris Soghoian, an analyst at the American Civil Liberties Union and a former FTC technologist, said voters should worry that the interests of politicians and commercial data brokers have aligned, making legal restrictions of data collection less likely.

“They’re going to be loath to regulate those companies if they are relying on them to target voters,” he said.

via Democrats push to redeploy Obama’s voter database – The Washington Post.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Chris M

    As part of my vocation, I do a lot of work with privacy laws around the globe. With the exception of health information and credit-related information, no American has any expectation of privacy under the law. Furthermore, it’s assumed that your information, once it’s in my hands, becomes my property, with which I can do what I want.

    The article above muddies things by generically referring to information as “personal”, as if that designation alone is enough to warrant some kind of protection. The information that the Democrats have on us (and the Republicans wish they did, but all the smartest technologists tend to vote left) is all public. It used to be that you had to go down to a local courthouse and pay transcription fees, but even then, it wasn’t “private” in any sense that you or I would recognize. On top of that, all of your online information – Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc is all information that you have volunteered to make public, regardless of how aware you are regarding what these sites do with your information.

    There’s two ways out of this:
    (tongue planted in cheek)
    1. The “USA USA” option: Don’t expect the government do look out for you. Yank hard enough on your digital bootstraps, and there won’t be enough information to go around to allow anyone, particularly *Democrats* and the shadowy forces of “big brother” to track and profile you.

    2. The “nanny state European socialist way”: Adopting a comprehensive set of privacy laws that start with the fundamental assumption that *you* own the information about you, and that anyone who comes into contact with is is a mere custodian, having no ownership rights over the data. By retaining these rights, you can revoke your permission for them to use it, collect it or share it. This also extends, naturally, to the likes of Facebook , Twitter and Google (and the rest of private industry), where they have to be much more explicit about what they do with your information, and seek permission before doing anything new with it.

    So here’s the rub – your information has value. Facebook isn’t free, you’re exchanging one thing of value (your privacy) for the ability to post pictures of cats and stalk ex-girlfriends. The government, with few exceptions, stays out of this financial arrangement between two private parties. To change this would result in the government beefing up it’s regulatory authority significantly, and disrupting a well-oiled marketplace in the minutest details of your personal life. I’m sure that ALEC, the US Chamber of Commerce and Americans for Prosperity would get right in line behind that kind of thing.

    On the flipside, the EU’s laws are a horrific hodgepodge of member-state laws, all written, interpreted and enforced in different ways. It creates a drag on businesses that are information-rich, and could result in significant fines if you make a misstep, or a find a local prosecutor gunning for political gain.

    So I find myself, like many other who work in my field, not sure what “third way” may exist, while watching data brokers invade the privacy of average people, and regulators (and the lawyers you have to pay to deal with them) draining the vitality of start-ups and people who find brilliant ways of doing business differently.

    Food for thought – this isn’t a left/right issue…

  • Chris M

    As part of my vocation, I do a lot of work with privacy laws around the globe. With the exception of health information and credit-related information, no American has any expectation of privacy under the law. Furthermore, it’s assumed that your information, once it’s in my hands, becomes my property, with which I can do what I want.

    The article above muddies things by generically referring to information as “personal”, as if that designation alone is enough to warrant some kind of protection. The information that the Democrats have on us (and the Republicans wish they did, but all the smartest technologists tend to vote left) is all public. It used to be that you had to go down to a local courthouse and pay transcription fees, but even then, it wasn’t “private” in any sense that you or I would recognize. On top of that, all of your online information – Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc is all information that you have volunteered to make public, regardless of how aware you are regarding what these sites do with your information.

    There’s two ways out of this:
    (tongue planted in cheek)
    1. The “USA USA” option: Don’t expect the government do look out for you. Yank hard enough on your digital bootstraps, and there won’t be enough information to go around to allow anyone, particularly *Democrats* and the shadowy forces of “big brother” to track and profile you.

    2. The “nanny state European socialist way”: Adopting a comprehensive set of privacy laws that start with the fundamental assumption that *you* own the information about you, and that anyone who comes into contact with is is a mere custodian, having no ownership rights over the data. By retaining these rights, you can revoke your permission for them to use it, collect it or share it. This also extends, naturally, to the likes of Facebook , Twitter and Google (and the rest of private industry), where they have to be much more explicit about what they do with your information, and seek permission before doing anything new with it.

    So here’s the rub – your information has value. Facebook isn’t free, you’re exchanging one thing of value (your privacy) for the ability to post pictures of cats and stalk ex-girlfriends. The government, with few exceptions, stays out of this financial arrangement between two private parties. To change this would result in the government beefing up it’s regulatory authority significantly, and disrupting a well-oiled marketplace in the minutest details of your personal life. I’m sure that ALEC, the US Chamber of Commerce and Americans for Prosperity would get right in line behind that kind of thing.

    On the flipside, the EU’s laws are a horrific hodgepodge of member-state laws, all written, interpreted and enforced in different ways. It creates a drag on businesses that are information-rich, and could result in significant fines if you make a misstep, or a find a local prosecutor gunning for political gain.

    So I find myself, like many other who work in my field, not sure what “third way” may exist, while watching data brokers invade the privacy of average people, and regulators (and the lawyers you have to pay to deal with them) draining the vitality of start-ups and people who find brilliant ways of doing business differently.

    Food for thought – this isn’t a left/right issue…

  • Kirk

    “this isn’t a left/right issue…”

    Clearly, you haven’t spent much time on this blog.

  • Kirk

    “this isn’t a left/right issue…”

    Clearly, you haven’t spent much time on this blog.

  • Klasie Kraalogies

    Good analysis Chris – and apt comment, Kirk :)

  • Klasie Kraalogies

    Good analysis Chris – and apt comment, Kirk :)

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    I am trying very hard to imagine what I would have to worry about, in terms of Obama’s data mining. Perhaps this is a sign of my utter insignificance on the planet. As a general rule, when I “communicate” toward politicians and Lutherans who fancy themselves to be somebody…at MOST, I get one ONE terse uber-snob reply and then I’m cut off for life. The rest of my “incoming” are ads in my mailbox from Donatos, KFC, and Walmart. I’m so afraid.

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    I am trying very hard to imagine what I would have to worry about, in terms of Obama’s data mining. Perhaps this is a sign of my utter insignificance on the planet. As a general rule, when I “communicate” toward politicians and Lutherans who fancy themselves to be somebody…at MOST, I get one ONE terse uber-snob reply and then I’m cut off for life. The rest of my “incoming” are ads in my mailbox from Donatos, KFC, and Walmart. I’m so afraid.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    I know, Rev. Johnson, but do you have anything to worry about if Google collects every kind of information about you? Possibly not, but that isn’t the point. As a matter of principle, do we want either commercial or political interests to know about our private lives?

    And, Kirk, I don’t know what you are referring to. Does anyone on this blog, from the left or the right, advocate the elimination of privacy? I don’t recall that. I seem to recall people from across the spectrum complaining about Google, etc.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    I know, Rev. Johnson, but do you have anything to worry about if Google collects every kind of information about you? Possibly not, but that isn’t the point. As a matter of principle, do we want either commercial or political interests to know about our private lives?

    And, Kirk, I don’t know what you are referring to. Does anyone on this blog, from the left or the right, advocate the elimination of privacy? I don’t recall that. I seem to recall people from across the spectrum complaining about Google, etc.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Notice here that not only conservatives but the ACLU is complaining about the Democrats’ database!

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Notice here that not only conservatives but the ACLU is complaining about the Democrats’ database!

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    Well Gene, I’m kind of clueless why a Christian needs a private life. Now, the Evangelicals of old a la Dwight Moody informed us that character is what folks is in the dark. That, on its face strikes true…for simple folk like me. But, in the Lutheran world, apparently privacy is a heirarchial thing, for the common lowly pastor or wannabe pastor is required by the magisterium and all its legal consultants to sign up with third pary background checkers proficient in researching everluvin thing about me down to medical records and traffic violations and probably that my dog’s license lapsed in this particular county. I guess I have no principles left about any of this because me attempting to keep my age and health a secret doesn’t change the fact that those in power in call processes are committed body and soul to age and health discrimination. So, rather than playing their game by playing them, I have my parents olde world values/voices call out again to me with a higher principled question: Why should I even bother with such unchristian behavior and culture? Or at least fret? Ah, maybe I’m just getting too old to get excited.

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    Well Gene, I’m kind of clueless why a Christian needs a private life. Now, the Evangelicals of old a la Dwight Moody informed us that character is what folks is in the dark. That, on its face strikes true…for simple folk like me. But, in the Lutheran world, apparently privacy is a heirarchial thing, for the common lowly pastor or wannabe pastor is required by the magisterium and all its legal consultants to sign up with third pary background checkers proficient in researching everluvin thing about me down to medical records and traffic violations and probably that my dog’s license lapsed in this particular county. I guess I have no principles left about any of this because me attempting to keep my age and health a secret doesn’t change the fact that those in power in call processes are committed body and soul to age and health discrimination. So, rather than playing their game by playing them, I have my parents olde world values/voices call out again to me with a higher principled question: Why should I even bother with such unchristian behavior and culture? Or at least fret? Ah, maybe I’m just getting too old to get excited.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com tODD

    Daniel (@4), you said:

    when I “communicate” toward … Lutherans who fancy themselves to be somebody…at MOST, I get one ONE terse uber-snob reply and then I’m cut off for life.

    Hmm. I’m sure that none of us know what Person you’re Trying to Mention. Such a thing Couldn’t Possibly Happen on Veith’s blog. :)

  • http://www.toddstadler.com tODD

    Daniel (@4), you said:

    when I “communicate” toward … Lutherans who fancy themselves to be somebody…at MOST, I get one ONE terse uber-snob reply and then I’m cut off for life.

    Hmm. I’m sure that none of us know what Person you’re Trying to Mention. Such a thing Couldn’t Possibly Happen on Veith’s blog. :)

  • http://www.toddstadler.com tODD

    Dr. Veith, I think your comment about the ACLU (@6) actually bears out Kirk’s point (@2), in that quite a lot of people here view things through as a strict Democratic/Republican (i.e. black/white) dichotomy. And so we see that the ACLU is necessarily contrasted with “conservatives” — because, of course, real conservatives don’t care about civil liberties?

    Anyhow, I don’t see much to complain about here. Nor do I have any complaints, as such, about Google. Doesn’t mean that I “advocate the elimination of privacy”, of course. There’s a wide middle road that seems to be ignored here. It’s called opting out.

    In my corner of the world, there’s a saying so well-worn it’s a cliche: “If you’re not paying for it, you’re the product.” So it goes with Facebook, Google, etc. You don’t want people to keep tabs on you? Then opt out of the digital revolution. Seriously. It’s certainly possible. We all used to live like that not too long ago, right?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com tODD

    Dr. Veith, I think your comment about the ACLU (@6) actually bears out Kirk’s point (@2), in that quite a lot of people here view things through as a strict Democratic/Republican (i.e. black/white) dichotomy. And so we see that the ACLU is necessarily contrasted with “conservatives” — because, of course, real conservatives don’t care about civil liberties?

    Anyhow, I don’t see much to complain about here. Nor do I have any complaints, as such, about Google. Doesn’t mean that I “advocate the elimination of privacy”, of course. There’s a wide middle road that seems to be ignored here. It’s called opting out.

    In my corner of the world, there’s a saying so well-worn it’s a cliche: “If you’re not paying for it, you’re the product.” So it goes with Facebook, Google, etc. You don’t want people to keep tabs on you? Then opt out of the digital revolution. Seriously. It’s certainly possible. We all used to live like that not too long ago, right?

  • Chris M

    Todd – the idea of “opting out” presumes that we have a choice. Certainly, in our online recreational world, we can choose not to have Facebook, Google, etc. However, in our interactions with government, it’s not necessarily a choice we can make, or in making it, we give up another right. (In Wisconsin, for example, many people who signed the recall for Scott Walker were dismayed to find their name in a public database.) In addition, the workplace is another area where we have to find the right balance of privacy vs an employer’s need to have certain information about their employees.

    Case in point – if you’re a resident of SC, you just had your personal information stolen from the department of revenue by an international gang of criminal hackers. Unless you plan not to have income, you don’t have the option to “opt out”. At the same time, SC has no strong laws compelling the government to take industry-standard safeguards to protect that data against theft.

    In addition to the government, plenty of other agencies require personal information as part of providing vital services – the power utility, banks, landlords, etc. An average person doesn’t have the choice to opt-out, and at the same time, has no reason to expect that (under current law) the institution handling the data will do so in a way that safeguards their privacy.

    So, in many of our daily interactions, the idea that we can opt-in-or-out isn’t an option at all. As a result, there needs to be an authority that defines what constitutes a reasonable protection of one’s privacy, and the consequences for failing to do so.

    This is one of those areas where straight-ticket ideology doesn’t result in viable solutions, and where the (rightfully) paranoid right and left can link arms and actually come up with a viable solution, if they’re willing to buck their anti-regulatory and overly-statist views.

  • Chris M

    Todd – the idea of “opting out” presumes that we have a choice. Certainly, in our online recreational world, we can choose not to have Facebook, Google, etc. However, in our interactions with government, it’s not necessarily a choice we can make, or in making it, we give up another right. (In Wisconsin, for example, many people who signed the recall for Scott Walker were dismayed to find their name in a public database.) In addition, the workplace is another area where we have to find the right balance of privacy vs an employer’s need to have certain information about their employees.

    Case in point – if you’re a resident of SC, you just had your personal information stolen from the department of revenue by an international gang of criminal hackers. Unless you plan not to have income, you don’t have the option to “opt out”. At the same time, SC has no strong laws compelling the government to take industry-standard safeguards to protect that data against theft.

    In addition to the government, plenty of other agencies require personal information as part of providing vital services – the power utility, banks, landlords, etc. An average person doesn’t have the choice to opt-out, and at the same time, has no reason to expect that (under current law) the institution handling the data will do so in a way that safeguards their privacy.

    So, in many of our daily interactions, the idea that we can opt-in-or-out isn’t an option at all. As a result, there needs to be an authority that defines what constitutes a reasonable protection of one’s privacy, and the consequences for failing to do so.

    This is one of those areas where straight-ticket ideology doesn’t result in viable solutions, and where the (rightfully) paranoid right and left can link arms and actually come up with a viable solution, if they’re willing to buck their anti-regulatory and overly-statist views.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com tODD

    Chris (@10), I’m not terribly familiar with the laws governing the points you make, but I assume you’re right, and, as far as your points go, I agree. But they are largely outside the scope of the article, to which I was responding.

    I do wonder, however, if people could find success via lawsuits — say, in the South Carolina case you mention. There might be no legal standard on the state’s data security, but there might yet be a kind of market-based solution, as it were, if enough people won suits against the state for the damage done by such weak security. Not sure.

    I’ve also read that organizations like the ones you mention occasionally ask for more personal information than they need or even are legally entitled to (SSNs in particular). Most people are not aware of this, and see it as an either/or prospect, when it might be possible to open an account with alternate information (though doing so would doubtless be more of a pain).

    Just some thoughts. Still not disagreeing with your overall point.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com tODD

    Chris (@10), I’m not terribly familiar with the laws governing the points you make, but I assume you’re right, and, as far as your points go, I agree. But they are largely outside the scope of the article, to which I was responding.

    I do wonder, however, if people could find success via lawsuits — say, in the South Carolina case you mention. There might be no legal standard on the state’s data security, but there might yet be a kind of market-based solution, as it were, if enough people won suits against the state for the damage done by such weak security. Not sure.

    I’ve also read that organizations like the ones you mention occasionally ask for more personal information than they need or even are legally entitled to (SSNs in particular). Most people are not aware of this, and see it as an either/or prospect, when it might be possible to open an account with alternate information (though doing so would doubtless be more of a pain).

    Just some thoughts. Still not disagreeing with your overall point.

  • helen

    tODD, it’s not that I think conservatives aren’t interested in “civil liberties”. I think the ‘anti Christian liberties union’ isn’t interested in my liberty.

    E.g. Have they joined any of the legal protests (on religious liberty grounds) to the HHS mandate?

  • helen

    tODD, it’s not that I think conservatives aren’t interested in “civil liberties”. I think the ‘anti Christian liberties union’ isn’t interested in my liberty.

    E.g. Have they joined any of the legal protests (on religious liberty grounds) to the HHS mandate?

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    I find an “ah hah” moment above in Chris’s comment. I suspect that, at base, the real import of privacy concerns is economic.

    In that economic concern, I then observe that “privacy” becomes very much a class issue. The higher up on the food chain one is, the more privacy one needs. We see this in the employee-employer setting Chris alludes to. Again, in Lutheran Church world, the Denomination/Synod/Congregation wants every bit of info on me that is possible. The favor is not returned of course. At base in this is the fear of whatever economic catastrophe I might cause. Again, the reverse is not of concern…that a clergy family might suffer economiccally…well, that’s what clergy families are for, lol….oh, but to a certain point: We can’t have a clergy family being overtly publicly poor…they need to keep their poverty and the cause of it: PRIVATE. Well, easier said than done…for all poverty….especially since it’s a property of poverty that it tends to take on a life of its own that naturally dumps out into the PUBLIC. Well, we can’t have THAT…and still include such folks in the realm of privacy entitlement…and that’s how we get into the business of the us/them rhetoric of “The Poor”. They’re some other people…not our people. Their otherness is demarcated by the fact that their life circumstances have gone Jerry Springer into the public arena. Their names got posted in the newspaper in regard to their foreclosure. They are now the non-private “other”.

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    I find an “ah hah” moment above in Chris’s comment. I suspect that, at base, the real import of privacy concerns is economic.

    In that economic concern, I then observe that “privacy” becomes very much a class issue. The higher up on the food chain one is, the more privacy one needs. We see this in the employee-employer setting Chris alludes to. Again, in Lutheran Church world, the Denomination/Synod/Congregation wants every bit of info on me that is possible. The favor is not returned of course. At base in this is the fear of whatever economic catastrophe I might cause. Again, the reverse is not of concern…that a clergy family might suffer economiccally…well, that’s what clergy families are for, lol….oh, but to a certain point: We can’t have a clergy family being overtly publicly poor…they need to keep their poverty and the cause of it: PRIVATE. Well, easier said than done…for all poverty….especially since it’s a property of poverty that it tends to take on a life of its own that naturally dumps out into the PUBLIC. Well, we can’t have THAT…and still include such folks in the realm of privacy entitlement…and that’s how we get into the business of the us/them rhetoric of “The Poor”. They’re some other people…not our people. Their otherness is demarcated by the fact that their life circumstances have gone Jerry Springer into the public arena. Their names got posted in the newspaper in regard to their foreclosure. They are now the non-private “other”.

  • helen

    tODD @ 8
    Mention. Such a thing Couldn’t Possibly Happen on Veith’s blog.

    Dr. Veith, (May his shadow never grow less!) is not LCMS bureacracy
    (or if he is, not the kind that gets in a parish pastor’s hair and SET).

    Rev DGJ @ 13
    … : We can’t have a clergy family being overtly publicly poor…
    they need to keep their poverty and the cause of it: PRIVATE

    To make it public would reflect badly on the well cushioned DP,
    who, after all, is there to assure the proper care of the shepherds,
    not only to collect the wool when the sheep are shorn!

    [Or so it says someplace among the reasons for having DP's!]
    I have heard that declaring bankruptcy can get you removed from
    the LCMS roster (no personal knowledge here). It would seem more
    just to consider whether the DP should be removed, for negligence.

  • helen

    tODD @ 8
    Mention. Such a thing Couldn’t Possibly Happen on Veith’s blog.

    Dr. Veith, (May his shadow never grow less!) is not LCMS bureacracy
    (or if he is, not the kind that gets in a parish pastor’s hair and SET).

    Rev DGJ @ 13
    … : We can’t have a clergy family being overtly publicly poor…
    they need to keep their poverty and the cause of it: PRIVATE

    To make it public would reflect badly on the well cushioned DP,
    who, after all, is there to assure the proper care of the shepherds,
    not only to collect the wool when the sheep are shorn!

    [Or so it says someplace among the reasons for having DP's!]
    I have heard that declaring bankruptcy can get you removed from
    the LCMS roster (no personal knowledge here). It would seem more
    just to consider whether the DP should be removed, for negligence.

  • helen

    Re the Democrats data mining : much good may it do them!

    I just had to switch to gmail though and it’s a little eerie the way the ads are almost immediately adjusted to the message topics. (Although I don’t quite see how showing me an ad about the other person’s concern will achieve anything.)

  • helen

    Re the Democrats data mining : much good may it do them!

    I just had to switch to gmail though and it’s a little eerie the way the ads are almost immediately adjusted to the message topics. (Although I don’t quite see how showing me an ad about the other person’s concern will achieve anything.)

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    Helen,

    Yup. My Dad worked in a warehouse for minimum wage. If I ever wanted to talk about that in seminary, I was shut down and told I “had an agenda”.

    I had an agenda.

  • Rev. Daniel G. Johnson

    Helen,

    Yup. My Dad worked in a warehouse for minimum wage. If I ever wanted to talk about that in seminary, I was shut down and told I “had an agenda”.

    I had an agenda.

  • helen

    Been there, but probably a good deal longer ago.
    In my youth the only “white collar” in the congregation, educationally speaking, was the Pastor, (and he wore a tie).
    Which is not to say that there wasn’t money there; but the moneyed folks were indistinguishable; all “good Republican cloth coats” as they said at one time.

    [Maybe being "too good" for those cloth coats is what ails the Republicans, come to think of it. You can't act like you are better than other people in church or politics and hope be respected by those people.] Larry Beane put it rather clearly over on BJS. :)

    But this was about “privacy”. I digressed. Sorry, folks!

  • helen

    Been there, but probably a good deal longer ago.
    In my youth the only “white collar” in the congregation, educationally speaking, was the Pastor, (and he wore a tie).
    Which is not to say that there wasn’t money there; but the moneyed folks were indistinguishable; all “good Republican cloth coats” as they said at one time.

    [Maybe being "too good" for those cloth coats is what ails the Republicans, come to think of it. You can't act like you are better than other people in church or politics and hope be respected by those people.] Larry Beane put it rather clearly over on BJS. :)

    But this was about “privacy”. I digressed. Sorry, folks!

  • dust

    One of the things that bothers me about all these pop ups gleaned from our emails is that emails are done in private but the pop ups appear on our computer screens which is sort of public…at least in the following sense, for example.

    suppose you look up some info on STD’s for your “friend” who does not have a computer, and shortly afterwards your significant other comes in and sees the pop ups generated in response to your “innocent” search right there on your screen for public display?

    could throw some cold water on plans for the evening :)

    cheers!

  • dust

    One of the things that bothers me about all these pop ups gleaned from our emails is that emails are done in private but the pop ups appear on our computer screens which is sort of public…at least in the following sense, for example.

    suppose you look up some info on STD’s for your “friend” who does not have a computer, and shortly afterwards your significant other comes in and sees the pop ups generated in response to your “innocent” search right there on your screen for public display?

    could throw some cold water on plans for the evening :)

    cheers!


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