back to article Republican filibuster blocks Senate Cybersecurity bill

The latest attempt by the US government to ensure some kind of security standards for its critical infrastructure has failed, with Senate Republicans having blocked legislation over concerns at over-regulation of business and the weighing-down of the bill with useless ammendments. "Despite the President’s repeated calls for …


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  1. asdf


    More proof here on the Titanic that is America they have gotten the populace to fight over the deck chairs while we sink. I am right, He is wrong, I will sit and pout until I get what I want. Sadly that not only describes my two year old but the US political system as well.

    1. henrydddd

      Re: sigh

      The Republican party in the United States has said many times that their only goal is defeating Obama. IOW, we are willing to let the country go to hell in order to defeat Obama

    2. peyton?

      Re: sigh

      I particularly liked the reference to the "peculiar nature of the US legislative system"

      Most euphemistic rendering of "completely fucked" I've seen in a while.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: sigh

        "Most euphemistic rendering of "completely fucked" I've seen in a while."

        This is a Good Thing as it keeps Congress from being organized and efficient. The kind of damage they could do if they ever got their act together is scary.

  2. Dan Paul

    I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

    We "the People" need a troop of lawyers nearing retirement that would work a pro-bono "Theft of Services" civil lawsuit against every Senator and Congressman to recover their wages for the last four years of their outright obstruction of justice.

    The only way to fight the LAW is to use the LAW. Otherwise we might as well just admit that Democracy has failed and start a Revolution.

    Lets face it, the main objections by the Republican party (Tea Party) to the Obama Administration have their basis in outright racism and I have heard it right from their mouths. It's not even a question anymore.

    Fox News propogates outright lies and they laugh about getting away with it.

    Republican policies got us into this mess and they are NOT going to get us out of it. If we do not regulate business they will do nothing to fix problems until it is far too late. It's way past time that business paid it's fair share towards the cost of government. The Romney's of the world will just continue to hide money in offshore accounts, getting rich off the blood sweat and tears of "those people" who actually work for a living.

    I have had enough of the political posturing, bogus amendments, fillibustering and grandstanding.

    It's time for a spanking.

    1. Mr. Great Sage

      Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

      "Lets face it, the main objections by the Republican party (Tea Party) to the Obama Administration have their basis in outright racism and I have heard it right from their mouths."

      My objection to the current leadership is that the "Affordable Care" act caused me to have to pay $2,000 out of pocket for the birth of my new baby girl, instead of paying $300 for it. I also get the 'wonderful' luxury of being able to pay a higher insurance premium as well. I am by no means rich.

      1. joejack


        Honest question - what changed under the new laws causing it to cost $1700 more?

        1. Tom 13


          You'd have to read the bill to know that, and nobody has.

        2. Mr. Great Sage

          Re: @Sage


          Yes. Insurance premiums have sky rocketed.

      2. lambda_beta

        Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

        You must be kidding. $300 for a birth ? $300 doesn't even get you an X-ray.

        You're are completely misinformed about health care in the US and how it works. The insurance companies and heath industry control what you pay. These industries together contributed approximately $9.25 billion to PACs between 1998 and 2011 (more than three times the amount from oil companies). And this does not included the super-PACs.

        So ask yourself, what can $9250 million dollars buy me? Maybe some really good legislation to keep the incredible dysfunctional US health system in check.

    2. Ammaross Danan

      Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

      @Dan Paul: Apparently you're too busy frothing at the mouth to actually research your bias.

      Either way, back to the matter at hand: an abortion regulation and weapon magazine restrictions amended to the Act? WTF? There should be a regulation/law/bylaw/whatever that prohibits amending legislation to bills that does not directly tie into the bill at hand. Of course, such a motion would never pass because it would be weighed down by amendments to ban McDonalds from Spokane, Washington, mandating the use of solar panels on gov't buildings in Alaska, regulating the number of corn farms in the state of Kansas, and reducing funding for toiletry kits for troops abroad.

      1. asdf

        Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

        Sage, Danan keep rearranging those deck chairs.

        1. Eddy Ito

          Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

          Sadly asdf, you seem to believe the bill in question is more important than rearranging those deck chairs. Let me give you a quick lesson on US politics; if any group of politicians from either side says a bill is urgent, necessary and absolutely has to be passed now to save us from some total suffering and pain it means the bill is so bad it should be burned or rewritten from scratch. Remember the whole point of making it "critical" is to slide it past everyone before too many people find out what's really in it.

          1. MVS

            Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

            Hahah, "you must pass the bill so you can read it...".

            Remember the first bill passed in Fall 2008 to "save the economy". That was the first jump off the cliff (not the cause, but the knee-jerk reaction). I recall all the dire warnings about not passing it scared most of the pols into voting for it. (Point of context, though I blame Republicans for buying into it as well, is that in 2008, the House and Senate were dem controlled).

            To me fear/emotion based arguments are a total waste of time. I think it's time for all us to unite against the lies from political (govt., media, business, Hollywood and so on) scam artists and those who practice cronyism at the expense other U.S. citizens. For example, saying "the rich must pay their fair share" is an emotional argument. Saying that those taxpayers (individuals and businesses) who make over 250,000 and are paying no income taxes should have their loopholes removed (unless those loopholes somehow truly benefit the economy, but there should be a high bar to prove it) is a better platform. If you look at any of the IRS, GAO, CBO statistics, the rich ARE paying their fair share, so it's a divisive, really ridiculous argument. Let's not let them get away with it.

            Bills should not be loaded with extraneous issues not directly related to the one being passed, and dividing the U.S. should not be tolerated. If you can intelligently argue your point from your principles, then we can have the conversation and still be friends afterwards.

            Beer, since it's a good idea for everyone to relax, and get away from the emotional loading and do our best to weigh the facts.

      2. Tom 13

        Re: I completely agree, US Politicians are no better than two year olds that need a spanking

        Yes, but the Republicans learned the tactic at the feet of Democrats.

  3. jon 68

    Back to the actual topic at hand

    While there are gaps and bad decisions at the corporate and personal levels ( those who currently control each person's security ), it's usually easy to determine who forgot to close the hen house door. Should the US Government, or any other Government agency takeover that responsibility, then the public internet is no longer public and becomes less than useless.

    The last thing we need is a bunch of overpaid cronies to 'take the lead in securing our national infrastructure' by screwing up my desktop or access. Which is EXACTLY What would wind up happening.

    As for how bills pass through congress, it was a great process initially, when our REPUBLIC was first formed, but over the years as some have tried to transform us into a DEMOCRACY, it's become polluted with infighting and special interests.

    1. PT

      Re: Back to the actual topic at hand

      There's also the little detail that the bill was proposed by Joe Lieberman, and with anything coming from that dissembling bag of wind you have to ignore the patriotic-sounding headlines and read the small print. As far as cyber-terrorism is concerned, this bill is just so much security theater - the real substance is about legalizing and facilitating domestic surveillance of US citizens.

  4. Shannon Jacobs

    Loyal opposition? Not possible in America.

    One of the special things about America is proud ignorance and refusal to learn from anyone else. The British have an understanding that it is possible to disagree on many issues while still being patriotic and loving the nation. Therefore you can usually manage to have rational discussions of the national problems and look for the best solution for everyone.

    That sort of thing is no longer possible in America. The teabagging extremists think they are the only "true patriots" who actually love the nation. Anyone who disagrees with them is not merely wrong, but should be compared to socialists, nationalists, Nazis (National socialists, remember), Arab terrorists, or whatever other pejorative terms they can think of.

    I'm not saying that all the voters are idiots and that all of the Americans deserve the disaster that the political dysfunction is leading to--but there are enough voters who are idiots that their votes are swinging elections. Actually, "swinging" is not the right verb. More like "flushing" as in down the toilet. This week's amazing example involves a guy in Tennessee who attacked his wife for looking at a picture of Romney. I guess she was stupid enough to like Romney and is probably getting ready to vote for Rmoney--but he is so stupid and ignorant that he decided Willard "the Mitt" Romney was her lover, so he destroyed her computer and beat her up. At least if he's in jail he might be unable to vote, eh?

    God save the queen? Save America first?

    1. Mr. Great Sage

      Re: Loyal opposition? Not possible in America.

      While I agree mostly with your first paragraph, you immediately fall into your own irony trap. You complain about being called a socialist (an actual system on how you feel a country should be run) and then immediately call those who are on the opposite side of your view tea bangers. (a derogatory sexual term.) it's a fine bit of hypocrisy, and you should really examine how you think about others with opposing views if you truly believe your first point is true.

    2. MVS

      Re: Loyal opposition? Not possible in America.

      Using your line of reasoning, and divisive trolling, he must have been a democrat, otherwise he would have been informed as to who the candidates were...

      Anybody who uses the term "teabagging" obviously has not assocated them, and appears to be buying into the "us vs. them" mantra that the Illuminati (insert preferred group who is controlling us) is pushing.

  5. LateNightLarry

    Re: Loyal opposition? Not possible in America.

    My personal opinion is that as soon as the RepubliCLOWN leadership announced that they were going to do everything they could to ensure that the legally elected President would be a one term President, and then started their terrorist tactics of blocking any meaningful legislation, the Attorney General should have charged them with Treason for trying to destroy the government, sent them to trial, and when they were convicted, throw them in the Supermax prison in Colorado... Next the AG should have gone after anyone who signed Grover Norquist's "no taxes" pledge, and given them the same treatment... By their words and actions, they've made it clear that they are out to destroy the United States for their personal and political gain... They're TRAITORS... treat them as such.

    Beer, because there's no wine glass, and I need a whole bunch of wine thinking of the way those traitors have treated the middle class.

    1. Tom 13


      I'd recommend laying off the kool-aid, but it's obviously too late. Your brain is already gone. It's the Big 0 trying to destroy what little was left of our Republic and turn us into another People's Republic. So far he's done almost as good of a job as Mugabe, it's just we're a bit more stout people than his poor victims were.

  6. LDS Silver badge

    It's simple: make CEOs liable for any damage caused by lack of security

    The real reason is not "control". It's "costs". They knew they're system are often at risk because they still think IT expenses are something they should reduce as much as they can. Security will require to hire highly skilled people and redesign their networks, and they don't want to spend a dime on that.

    Thereby you have to hit them in the pockets. Ok, security is up to you, no gov control. But if your lack of security causes any damage, the CEO and the board are liable and will pay *with their own money*, not company ones.

    Otherwise this guys think security as something as customer support, you need only something barely working, it's not a problem if you outsource it to some cheap supplier, as long as it is cheap enough to ensure your mighty bonus....

  7. Jonathan Samuels

    Its the job of the political opposition in any country to destroy the government, however in the US you have the system that just makes that very easy. As soon as the executive doesnt have the support of 51% of the legislature in any other country it resigns.

    If you choose to fear strong government more than weak government then its not politicans at fault but the system/ public

    1. Paul 5

      that is NOT the job

      It's not the opposition's job to destroy the government - it's their job to advocate an alternative (where they disagree), and convince the people that their alternative is better, and that they would make a better government, come the next election.

      If they put destroying the government ahead of the national interest, they are not doing their job. And a rational electorate (and truthful media) would quite rightly punish them for it.

      1. Jonathan Samuels

        Re: that is NOT the job

        That may be a nice theory but in practice thats not the reality. One of the best ways of getting elected is wait to the government to screw up (which all do eventually) and say absolutely nothing. A politicans job is to firstly to get elected and only secondly to implement any policies.

        As for 'National Interest' any poltiical party that doesnt think getting into power is the national interest shouldnt be involved in politics in the first place

        Electorate rational yeah right we are talking democracy here.

  8. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "to better protect our nation from potentially catastrophic cyber-attacks"

    Well, in my layman's opinion, to better protect our nation from potentially catastrophic cyber-attacks it would be much better to remove strategic elements from being attackable via the Internet.

    In other words, somebody put a damn firewall between the "nucular" reactors and the Internet already ! Why is there a need for a law on that ? And why, oh why, is there a need to discuss the issue ?

    Nuclear reactors, city traffic infrastructures, pipeline management, power grids. All those things need to be properly segmented and not Internet-accessible without proper authentication. Not only is that obvious, but it is a fucking shame that such an issue need to be "debated" in a political arena which is only interested in who will get how many brownie points.

    Fail all around.

    1. Tom 13

      Re: "to better protect our nation from potentially catastrophic cyber-attacks"

      Obviously you've just woken up from a 20 year slumber and are therefore completely unaware of Stuxnet and Flame. Perhaps you should catch up a bit.

  9. R 16


    This is all I read "Republican filibuster blocks Senate Cybersecurity bill"

    WTF - "HEALTH CARE BILL???????"

    Fire all of congress right now.

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