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Ashcroft's Tortured Recall

Friday, Jul. 18, 2008 3:46 AM

So the Messiah of All Things Green, Al Gore, pops out of his hole to say we need an Apollo Project-style approach to developing alternative energy sources.

I've been saying that longer than he has (before his docudrama on global warming). The Nobel Committee didn't even call.

Developing a new reliable, efficient, and affordable energy source, stamping it 'Made in America,' and breaking the stranglehold of foreign oil on economic terms is just sound business. I believe they call it 'innovation.'

So please spare me the gushing over Gore's revelation like he just came off the mountain with a pair of stone tablets.

When you sacrifice your principles and morals, you get moments like John Ashcroft's testimony before Congress on waterboarding, where he told Maxine Waters, 'I do not believe it would define torture.'

Ashcroft also suggested that the CIA went off the reservation first, torturing Abu Zubaydah before the infamous memo by John Yoo, then looked to the White House for protection. But, um, he didn't really have anything to do with that, you know - he just, um, approved the memo for release.

Just another godly, patriotic man who can't remember the least detail of a critical decision.

The attorney for Terry Childs, the computer expert who is holding San Francisco's computer network hostage, says that he's a hard-working man who has served the city well and isn't the 'bad actor' here, as Childs has offered to tell them the password (as of Tuesday).

City officials say this is the first they've heard of this offer.

Of course, I'd like to know what Childs is asking in return. It's also a losing gambit, because the City doesn't have to do anything - as long as that password exists, and as long as they're locked out, Childs is guilty, period.

The circumstances of Childs' employment, from bad performance reviews to the alleged incompetence of his supervisors, is irrelevant. Childs was paid, and is essentially refusing to deliver his work product as contracted.

The security lesson about the damage a trusted insider can achieve is also being glossed over. Why break in when someone on the inside will open the door? And who's to say Childs hasn't compromised the system in other ways?
The City has no choice but to have everything scrutinized, and possibly redesigned.

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