Debate Rounds (5)
i dont think the NSA should be storing our phone calls, emails, texts, and everything else we do on the internet because it infringes on our freedom. the founding fathers never would have wanted this. benjamin franklin once said "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." i agree with him completely. the government tells us that if your not doing anything wrong then you have nothing to worry about but i dont trust this government. this is the same government that sent guns to the mexican drug cartels so why would they store all this information in a massive data base if they have no intention of using it? thomas jefferson wrote in the declaration of independence. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." but today its more like life, security, and the pursuit of happiness. when obama was running for president he was against the patriot act but now he expands the patriot act. with the NSA we spy on our allies. we have been doing it since the bush years. we stored the german chancellor angela markals or whatever here name and position is phone calls and emails and everything she does on the internet as well. is that really good for our relationship with germany? shes not the only one we spy on either so its not really good for any of our foreign relations.
First, a few observations. The government exists to protect and maximize the social welfare of the governed. As such, the resolution should be evaluated based upon the success of the government"s attempt to maximize the welfare of society as a whole. Moreover, to best evaluate this standard you should prefer real world impacts to theoretical or hypothetical ones because it allows us to actually compare the benefits and costs.
Contention 1: Domestic surveillance by the NSA prevents terrorist attacks before they happen. The NSA is a key factor in our nation"s security, and since the tragic events on September 11, 2001 they have been cracking down security and have ensured, by any means possible that they are keeping America safe. According to Brad Plumer of the Washington Post, since 2001, the amount of terrorist attacks in America have decreased by 80%. Terrorism in the USA has gone down tremendously because of the NSA"s contribution. According to Matt Apuzzo and Adam Goldman of the Associated Press, the NSA internet spying program, PRISM intercepted several key emails that led to the stoppage of the Al-Qaeda planned attack on the New York City subways. The same NSA internet spying program that prevented the subway bombing, also stopped an attack on the New York stock exchange. According to Bloomberg News the NSA was able intercept a series of telephone calls, and emails between the plotters. They arrested the men behind the potential bombings and saved lives.
Contention 2: The large collection of data from domestic surveillance of the NSA allows for data mining. The NSA is collecting massive amounts of both metadata, phone call information, as well as content through a program called PRISM. Data mining is a field of computer science focused on analyzing data and discovering associations and/or variations and anomalies that would be impossible for human beings to recognize, either due to the volume of the data or simply because nobody was looking for it. This allows for previously unknown data to be discovered such as information on terrorists. Data mining has proven to be effective in several areas such as Marketing, Financial, Business and Government. Unlike humans, computers are precise and use math, a definite form of logic to find patterns that are by definition, impossible for humans to find. The SAS explains that data mining is key to finding hidden criminal behaviors. Emily Badger similarly gives an example of how data mining used by researchers were able to catch a kidnapper within half an hour of kidnapping a 10 year old girl. This is one of numerous situations in which data mining has been previously proven to be effective. The purpose of the NSA collecting this data is to use this concept of data mining. In order to prove the NSA not useful, data mining must be proven not useful.
Contention 3: Tor Network and Child Pornography
A major issue facing society today is illegal activity hidden behind the security of the Internet. Recently, using its advanced hacking and software tools, the NSA was able to infiltrate the Tor Network, also known as the Deep Web. The TOR network is a series of routers that work like the internet. However, sites hosted on Tor network servers cannot be searched through Google or common search engines. These sites allowed users to access illegal services - money laundering, drug trading and assassination. Many of these sites were hosted by an organization called "Freedom Hosting." These sites include the TorMail e-mail client as well as LoliCity and PedoEmpire, common hotbeds for child pornography. However, they are still accessible. Sites like LoliCity, which hosted over 100 gigabytes of video and pictures in 2011 and now contains more than a million such files, offer a place to upload and distribute any such files. Attempts to shut down this organization, which was launched in 2008, had largely failed until nvow. Recently, the NSA was able to gain access to this server, using exploits provided by Verizon and the FBI. It was able to shut down Freedom Hosting, which hosted the majority of child pornography websites. Approximately half of all sites on the Tor Net were shut down or infected by this attack. By doing this, the NSA is preventing the abuse of thousands of children all over the world. In addition, studies by Gail Dines, published in the UK Guardian, state that "rape of a prepubescent child followed"habitual" consumption of child porn". By stopping the proliferation of child pornography, the NSA is reducing violence in our communities. In addition, shutting down Freedom Hosting closed down many illegal money laundering and drug trading businesses. These activities harmed many, not only through fraud but through the harmful effects of drugs as well as the relatively high rate of drug transactions that go badly and end in a murder.
Contention 4: Weapon Trafficking
Additionally, in order to clarify the term domestic, I offer the following evidence. According to a leaked official document of the NSA, most of the data traveling through the world goes through U.S. servers, in specific, 90%.
I would like to ask my opponent two question: When did the American government "send guns to the mexican drug cartels"?
(Do you have a source for this?)
Also has the constitution been wrong before?
no the constitution has not been wrong on anything in my eyes.
while im not going to argue that the NSA does not stop terrorist attacks i believe it infringes on the freedom of the american people. this country was founded on freedom and this government is tracking all your calls, texts, and emails. thomas jefferson once said "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it."
So first the constitution has been wrong before. That's why we have amendments, which are changes to the constitution! So by saying that you believe the constitution has never been wrong you are saying that slavery should be legal, and the African-Americans are only 3/5 of a person. That is what the constitution says, and if you believe that the constitution has never been wrong, then you are saying that these two racist things are not wrong.
And the constitution has been wrong before, that is what amendments are for! So how do we know that the constitution is not wrong about this, and how it infringes upon our freedom? My opponent admits that the NSA IS STOPPING TERRORISM! So if it is benefitting America, because it is stopping terrorism then how do we know that the constitution is not wrong and we need to change it.
I also ask my opponent to show where in the constitution, or in any American law where it says that the NSA can't do this, or it infringes upon our freedom, because it doesn't! It does not hack into our facebooks, and emails, and private messages, it uses meta data, and data mining in which they look for key words that could possibly be said by terrorists organizing a plot. Not just the average everyday person, so it is not infringing upon our rights, and freedom.
My opponent also fails to refute my 3rd contention on the prevention of child porn, and my 4th contention of weapon trafficking so those points are extended.
According to the Guardian:
"The NSA has previously claimed that 54 terrorist plots had been disrupted "over the lifetime" of the bulk phone records collection and the separate program collecting the internet habits and communications of people believed to be non-Americans. On Wednesday, Inglis said that at most one plot might have been disrupted by the bulk phone records collection alone."
amik10 forfeited this round.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by GarretKadeDupre 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con's basic premise was that "The government exists to protect and maximize the social welfare of the governed." Con assumed I agreed with this premise so never tried to demonstrate that it was actually true, and I strongly disagree: I think government is to promote, not maximize, the welfare. I think that's a key distinction which limits the government's power. Also, dropping the point that the government gave guns to drug cartels was a very bad idea. Many people are aware of this fact, so acting as if Con needs to prove it didn't help Pro's case. So convincing arguments to Con. No spelling and grammar points to either side per the first round stipulations and also, Con's casual writing style was actually easier to follow then Pro's. Good debate.
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