Comparing Political Platforms (4) Right to Privacy

Today’s installment is evidence that “Truth is stranger than fiction” (Mark Twain).  It’s about the Right to Privacy contained in the Fourth Amendment.  Try to read the following party platforms without shaking your head, especially you tech people who know your cyber-stuff and your cyber-hack-celebs.

DNC Democrats will protect our industry, infrastructure, and government from cyberattacks. We will strengthen our cybersecurity, seek to establish global norms in cyberspace, and impose consequences on those who violate the rules. We will do this while protecting the privacy and civil liberties of the American people. We will also ensure a coherent strategy across federal agencies by building on the Obama Administration’s Cybersecurity National Action Plan, especially the empowerment of a federal Chief Information Security Officer, the modernization of federal information technology, and upgrades to government-wide cybersecurity. Democrats reject the false choice between privacy interests and keeping Americans safe. ( p.44 )

Democrats will make government simpler and more user-friendly. The federal government too often operates with websites designed from another era that are too complicated, too hard to use, and rarely designed for mobile phones or tablets. We will build on the creation of the United States Digital Service (USDS) and give it the resources it needs to transform and digitize the top 25 federal government programs that directly serve citizens. We will eliminate internal barriers to government modernization. And we will use technology to improve outcomes and government accountability by embracing prioritized goal setting and performance tracking for the federal government. (p. 26)

LP Libertarians advocate individual privacy and government transparency. We are committed to ending government’s practice of spying on everyone. We support the rights recognized by the Fourth Amendment to be secure in our persons, homes, property, and communications. Protection from unreasonable search and seizure should include records held by third parties, such as email, medical, and library records.
RNC Affirming the Fourth Amendment “right of the people to be secure in their houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures,” we call for strict limitations on the use of aerial surveillance on U.S. soil, with the exception of patrolling our national borders for illegal entry and activity. We oppose any attempts by government to require surveillance devices in our daily lives, including tracking devices in motor vehicles. (p 13) The requirement for all banks around the world to provide detailed information to the IRS about American account holders outside the United States has resulted in banks refusing service to them. Thus, FATCA [Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, March 2010] not only allows “unreasonable search and seizures” but also threatens the ability of overseas Americans to lead normal lives. We call for its repeal and for a change to residency-based taxation for U.S. citizens overseas. (p.13)

There is nothing in the Bible about electronic record-keeping and cybersecurity, but it does have a great deal to say about things being done in secret and brought into the light (what we might call transparency).  Here are but a few:

  • Ephesians 5:6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient…12 For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret.
  • 1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men’s hearts. At that time each will receive his praise from God.
  • John 3:20 “For everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.
  • 2 Timothy 3:13 But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.
  • 2 Thessalonians 2:9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, 10 and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.

The bottom line from God’s perspective is that light is good and truth is good.  But doing evil, hiding in the shadows, and establishing a legal curtain for the sole yet conjoined twin purposes of deception and denial are bad.

Therefore, transparency is good for God-loving people, even with a right to privacy.  Jesus said, “I have spoken openly to the world,” Jesus replied. “I always taught in synagogues or at the temple, where all the Jews come together. I said nothing in secret.” (John 18:20)

There’s nothing to hide as “private” if a person speaks and lives by the truth.

Transparency is mentioned in the DNC-Democrat Platform five (5) timesHere is the breakdown: Campaign Finance (by executive order-p.25,)/Taxation (2x ); Policing (1x ); Charter Schools (1x ); and Anti-corruption worldwide (1x).

Transparency is mentioned in the RNC-Republican Platform nine (9) timesHere is the breakdown: Trade (2x), Federal Reserve (1x); Workforce (1x);  Education unfunded mandates/College costs (2x), Governmental/Healthcare (2x), United Nations management (1x).

right to privacyFolks, elections have serious consequences.  Outside of personalities we may like or dislike, or even hate, there are real issues at stake.  Character must be transparent.  It’s time to demand it.

Sure, our elected officials have the same right to privacy as the rest of us, but that’s only in their compartmentalized personal life.  That, we do not have a right to know.  It’s different for the person who has been serving in government at whatever level.  Why?  Because what they do in the course of serving the public in a government office, paid for by you and me, needs transparency.  We need to know what’s behind the curtain that they don’t want us, their employer, to see.

Friends don’t let friends remain ignorant, get their news from comedians or Twitter, or vote based solely upon superficial things like pairs of letters:  M/F, D/R or FB.

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Categories Articles, Articles and Devotionals | Tags: | Posted on August 2, 2016

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