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Tuesday 23 March 2004

Your Tax Dollars At Work

Now that American IT jobs are fleeing overseas, more American geeks are themselves looking to do work outside the country. This is a challenge, of course, because few countries are as welcoming of immigrants or ‘guest workers’ as is the United States.

And to make things worse, the U.S. government is apparently prosecuting people who do work overseas that the government doesn’t like. Like, for instance, arranging computer security for online casinos.

A recent New York Times article reports that US prosecutors are beginning to use the federal aiding and abetting statute to investigate and potentially prosecute those who, through perfectly lawful activities, assist online gaming companies that flout US law. This includes banks, broadcasters, ISPs and advertisers who help these casinos get their message out.

Thank goodness we’ve got the federal government on the job, helping to make sure that people don’t gamble online. And thank goodness the world is at peace and there are no other things that the government could be doing with these resources. Imagine: if we were, say, under threat from a loose coalition of fascist theocrats determined to destroy western civilization, the feds might have to go soft on gambling. And then where would we be?

Posted by tino at 10:30 23.03.04
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This is fairly typical of the US Federal government. See the Foreigh corrupt Practices act which also prohibits US citizens from engaing in legal commerce in other countries if that commerce would involve what the US government frowns upon. The easiest example is bribing local officials to get a permit or expidite some matter.

Posted by: Paul M Johnson at March 23, 2004 11:49 AM