Cybersecurity Act Rejected By The Senate

from the there-goes-that-one dept

Over the last few days, it became clear that the big Cybersecurity Act in the Senate almost certainly didn’t have the votes to pass. However, with all the negotiating and horse trading going on, there was still the possibility on some sort of “deal.” Unfortunately, it seemed like the push for a deal also meant a push towards weakening the privacy protections. In the end, there was no deal, and no Cybersecurity Act this time around, as the vote in the Senate failed to reach the 60 vote threshold necessary for cloture (basically to continue moving the bill forward).

This certainly doesn’t mean that any cybersecurity legislation is dead. There likely will be other attempts to get something through — either something much less complex in this lame duck session, or (more likely) a bigger effort next year. The bill failed, in part, because some businesses were worried about it creating too many regulations for them. I still think it should have failed for failing to explain why it was actually needed. The good news, however, is that this latest version of the bill definitely took privacy concerns more seriously — and the support for the Franken/Paul amendment would have made privacy safeguards even stronger. Hopefully this means that when the next attempt at cybersecurity comes through, that the baseline will include strong privacy safeguards. I’ll have some more thoughts later on what Congress should do if it really wants to pass a cybersecurity bill, but for now, this version of the bill is dead.

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Comments on “Cybersecurity Act Rejected By The Senate”

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23 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Guns Loaded

Anarchy; to avoid the use of coercion, violence, force and authority, while still producing a productive and desirable society. That is my anarchy. Doesn’t sound like terrorism to me. When you use this definition our government begins to sound more and more like a terrorist entity.

Mason Wheeler (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Guns Loaded

Sounds real nice. Only one problem with it, though: it’s impossible to implement in practice as it goes directly contrary to human nature.

Human nature abhors a power vacuum, to borrow a well-known phrase. I’m not aware of any time in the history of any civilization in which a period of anarchy (the absence of a strong ruling power of some sort) was not marked by strife and bloodshed as multiple factions attempted to claim the #1 spot.

Any social organization you can think of that consists of more than a handful of members is either organized in a very specific way, or it falls apart quickly. That specific way is the pattern of human nature, the pattern of an extended human family. It’s essentially shaped like a pyramid.

Every organization, be it families, social clubs, businesses, churches, political parties or entire nations, has a pyramid-shaped hierarchy in some form. The details vary wildly, but the fundamental structure does not.

There have been some groups that consciously attempt to subvert this structure, most recently the Occupy Wall Street movement. If they’re notable for anything, it tends to be for their failure to actually accomplish anything. This is not a coincidence.

So you can dream of “productive anarchy” if you want, but in real life no such thing has ever existed, nor will it without a fundamental shift in human nature.

Josh in CharlotteNC (profile) says:

Banks killed it

I’m reading that there was a bunch of resistance from financial companies (banks) against this.

“In a letter Wednesday to Senate leaders, nine industry groups, including the American Bankers Association and
the Financial Services Roundtable, argued that the bill would add a layer of inconsistent and potentially
duplicative regulation for financial firms.”
American Banker
“Industry Groups Oppose Senate Cyber-Security Bill”
By Kevin Wack
2 August 2012

Sorry, I don’t have a link. I get this from an internal company site.

Anonymous Coward says:

Obligatory Simpsons quote:

Speaker: Then it is unanimous, we are going to approve the bill to evacuate the town of Springfield in the great state of?
Congressman: Wait a second, I want to tack on a rider to that bill ? $30 million of taxpayer money to support the perverted arts.
Speaker: All in favor of the amended Springfield-slash-pervert bill? [entire Congress boos] Bill defeated. [gavel]
Kent Brockman: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: democracy simply doesn’t work. repost ==> /.

mand says:

Gun control attempt helped sink it

Democrat Chuck Schumer was trying to slip an anti-gun amendment onto the cybersecurity bill, but people noticed.

nice try chuck. Very sleazy attempt by the Democrats to try and slip something like this buy, obviously trying to ride the emotional wave from the Aurora, CO incident.

http://thehill.com/video/senate/240657-cybersecurity-bill-includes-gun-control-measure

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