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    Posted January 17, 2014 by
    k3vsDad
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    Farmersburg, Indiana
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    Did Prez Go Too Far Or Not Far Enough?

     

    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     k3vsDad told me, 'As I sat and listened to President Obama outlining the steps he is taking to try and quell the uproar over the NSA intelligence gathering program, I found the President struggling to come to some ray of sunshine and running instead into more clouds. Rather than announcing any concrete steps to rein in and ensure the privacy of Americans was protected, it seemed more like the President was applying a Band-Aid when a tourniquet was warranted. I don’t think what he said today made anyone more at ease or pleased any on either side of the controversial program. At least I can say he tried. But were it not for the Snowden leaks, we would still be more in the dark than we still are.”'
    - hhanks, CNN iReport producer

    President  Barack Obama announced today reforms to the National Security Agency's  collection of metadata which affects every American as well as foreign  leaders and global intelligence gathering.

    The  debate now is: Did the President go too far with the changes or whether  in the interest of privacy concerns he did not go far enough?

    For  those who see Edward Snowden as a whistleblower, the reforms are  welcome. For those who see Snowden as a traitor, the President  capitulated and has put us in jeopardy.

    The  other big debate within our society is: How much privacy are we willing  to give up in order to remain secure while maintaining our freedoms?

    I  wonder why, with all the capabilities we have learned that the NSA has  at its disposal along with those of Cyber Command, was the attack, by  reportedly the Russian mob, on retail computer systems not detected and  thwarted?

    Wasn't  the Target and other retail stores hacking incident an attack on our  nation which the NSA gathering capability and the mission of Cyber  Command is suppose to detect and prevent?

    While  I do believe the President is trying to find a happy medium and thread  the needle, I am not sure with his announcements today if he went too  far or not far enough in protecting our freedoms while keeping us safe.

    Before  announcing his reforms, the President mounted a robust defense of the  intelligence gathering programs and those within the intelligence  community performing gathering capabilities. Some will say the President  was too defensive of the programs which are alleged to have delved too  far into Americans' privacy. Others will say the President did not stand  firm enough in defending the intelligence community.

    From the Cornfield, I am not sure if the President did find the right balance today.

    What  I do know, based on the Administration's record on transparency, that I  am skeptical of the President's vow to be more transparent about what  the intelligence community is doing.

    A  final question that all of us must ask ourselves in light of the  President's announcement today and the revelations about the  intelligence gathering programs is: Are we safer today than we were a  few years ago and are our freedoms as strong as those liberties once  were?

    We must each answer these questions for ourselves.

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