I’m Mad as Hell about an Executive Order on Cybersecurity

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Joel Harding


I recently read a disturbingly apathetic comment about President Obama possibly signing an Executive Order about cybersecurity.  Apologies to the recipient of my wrath for how I unloaded on you, but you honestly deserved it.

His comment was ‘I don’t know if I can support it’ after some very eloquent people explained that Congress had not passed a cybersecurity bill and President Obama is floating around to Washington insiders an Executive Order about cybersecurity. 

My response generally looked like the following comment.  Apologies to those outside the US because I’m going to use some words and phrases I’m sure you will not understand.

We voted the bastids into office, we can vote them out.  Want to really be heard?  Then, between elections stop by their home offices, drop off a note, write them an email, subscribe to their mailings by email and mail, attend their town halls. Generally do everything you can to stay both informed and involved.  If you don’t, you have become part of the problem and your collective apathy will keep this do-nothing Congress doing nothing.  

Both the Democrats and Republicans act as if they are not responsible to their constituents, and by all the signals we are sending them, they’re not. We seem to care only just before and election… then boo-hoo, they’re such bums.

Ever hear of the expression “the squeaky wheel gets the oil”?  Now, let’s put that in the context of this discussion.  Remember SOPA and PIPA?  Remember how many of us protested loud and vociferously to our Representatives and Senators? 

We wrote in our blogs.  We submitted online forms to Congress.  We called them on the phone. We sent them faxes. We wrote in online forums. We complained to the newspapers. We complained in online newspapers. We used every and all possible ways to tell our representatives on Capitol Hill that we were “Mad as Hell and not going to take this anymore”.

THAT.  That is what they need and honestly fear.  Now if their constituents routinely did that, do you think Congress would go on summer recess without voting on a cybersecurity bill again?  They might finally feel the wrath of their constituents….

Granted, a Presidential Executive Order is more than likely nothing more than a political ploy by President Obama.  “I did something”.  “I care more than Congress”.  But it is also an indictment about politics in the United States today and we let it get that way. But beyond that, we need to do something. 

And as much as you might not care, if President Obama signs an Executive Order on cybersecurity, it will set the de facto standards that we all must live with.  You’ll share the data and you’ll have to live with the standards.

Boo hoo, I don’t know if I can support this.

Here is a scene you need to watch to know where I’m coming from.  Always have, always will:

Cross-posted from To Inform is to Influence

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