The Boston Herald reports:
President Obama could soon have the ability to personally text message every single cell-phone-toting American -— whether they like it or not — with “critical emergency alerts” under a new federal program that civil libertarians and political opponents say is a Big Brother-like intrusion posing a high risk of political abuse.
Federal officials in New York yesterday unveiled the three-tiered emergency alert system that would blast messages about Amber Alerts, impending weather disasters and terror threats to mobile devices.
Cell-phone users could opt out of most alerts if they want to, but not the texter-in-chief’s presidential pages.
“It’s like the state rep sending out mailings about how wonderful they are,” said Tad Kasperowicz of the Quincy Tea Party. “President Obama says,’Here come the high winds and the thunderstorms’ and it’s not really an emergency, but, hey, he gets his name out to every cell phone in the area. I can see that. Absolutely. There’s potential for abuse there.”
Potential? I’d say near-certainty. Politicians already exploit every avenue they can find to get their names in front of you, from Congress’s franking privileges to governors stamping their name on billboards at every entrance to the state. Of course they will abuse this, but they’ve never had such an invasive tool before.