So our wonderful Senate, which has decided to punt on any actual governing in favor of executive departments and the judiciary, has decided to weigh in on Facebook’s privacy policies… In fairness, it’s just a few Senators, not the entire Senate, but still, this issue is greatly concerning. Whether it is summoning private businesses for a dressing down, like Goldman Sachs, or now Facebook, the tendency of the Senate to weigh in on individual businesses attempting to intimidate them is greatly disconcerting.
Officially, hearings are supposed to be fact finding when bringing outside individuals in (as opposed to oversight of government bodies), but in reality, it looks like posturing, pandering, and intimidation. Now, if they are concerned about privacy on the web, and wanted to bring Mr. Zuckerberg in to weigh in on the impact, that would seem perfectly reasonable. But to instead just send a letter from someone who helps makes laws is really disconcerting.
If they believe that the legal regime doesn’t protect privacy, propose a law to protect it. However, to simply pander by attacking a high profile business is pandering at best, and an attempt to gain extra legal powers by the government through intimidation at worst.