Obama targets technology in human rights abuses
April 23rd, 2012
01:44 PM ET

Obama targets technology in human rights abuses

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama announced Monday that he has signed an executive order allowing new sanctions against companies that enable Syria and Iran to use technology such as cell phone monitoring to carry out human rights abuses.

The order is part of a broader strategy intended to strengthen the administration's ability to prevent atrocities, including creation of an Atrocities Prevention Board, Obama said in somber remarks at the U.S. Holocaust

Memorial Museum to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day.

"These technologies should be in place to empower citizens, not to repress them," Obama said of the measure, which targets the Syrian and Iranian governments, as well as companies that provide them with high-tech equipment to use against their own people.


Topics: President Obama

soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. John

    Mitt Romney was addressing a crowd in Prattville, Alabama this past Monday when he stated:

    I understand how difficult it can be for an African-American in today’s society. In fact, I can relate to black people very well indeed. My ancestors once owned slaves, and it is in my lineage to work closely with the black community. However, just because they were freed over a century ago doesn’t mean they can now be freeloaders. They need to be told to work hard, and the incentives just aren’t there for them anymore. When I’m president I plan to work closely with the black community to bring a sense of pride and work ethic back into view for them.

    April 23, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Paul

      That story was started as a spoof from a fake news website. Get your facts straight next time. Let the Right continued to be the ones who routinely make stuff up, not the Left.

      April 25, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • Orolando McNair

      Afew days ago, someone sent this post to me. I was really amazed that in today's society that a person attempting to lead this nation could be so stupid. 1) How could he understand Slavery. 2) How could he understand what a Freed Slave would be thinking. 3) What does he really mean by, " When I’m president I plan to work closely with the black community to bring a sense of pride and work ethic back into view for them". I can forgive his parents for being his parents and his Slave Master ancestors. I will even forgive him for this statement. I've waited a few days to see if this would be mentioned in the media. If true, I can not believe he could be so stupid.

      April 29, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  2. Susan Doey CANADA

    OH PALEEEZE!!! technology is only as good or as bad as the operator! Who doesn't know that?! and your U.S. president?! aaahuh.

    April 23, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
  3. Susan Doey CANADA

    Oh and for the record.... NATIONALITY/RACE whatever HAS GOT NOTHING TO DO WITH IT! It's the "operator", maybe operator's teacher and so on and so on. M.G.!

    April 23, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
  4. nuff said

    Localities Get Up to $33,000 in Subsidies per Chevy Volt
    Thank you for spreading the word about National Legal and Policy Center.Submitted by Mark Modica on Mon, 04/23/2012 – 07:25
    Printer-friendlyEmail to friendA Jacksonville.com report gives a good explanation for why some Florida localities are purchasing Chevy Volts. When Jacksonville's chief of fleet management, Karim Kurji, was asked what the advantage of going green by purchasing Volts was he hit the nail on the head when he replied, "Federal money." The story goes on to reveal that the total federal taxpayer money used to subsidize one Chevy Volt purchased by Atlantic Beach was over $33,000. It now appears obvious that the Obama Administration and General Motors are willing to pay just about any price, even if the taxpayers are footing the bill, to see the Chevy Volt "succeed."

    April 23, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
    • Sponge-Bob

      The money doesn't seem to be doing much good, the Volt is certainly not breaking any sales records. You ever notice how Obama's solutions always require two things, more taxpayer money and more centralized power.

      April 23, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
      • jean2009

        Ah...Joey you always seem to be a little behind on the news....that is so February.... or maybe I should say 27 seconds ago... maybe you should invest in a 4G smart phone to get you up to speed.

        March Volt sales were double the February sales.



        April 24, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
  5. jean2009

    It is estimated the government spends $4 Billion per year for oil company subsidies. That is enough to weatherize 615,384 homes at $6,500 per pop, or purchase 99,304 Chevy Volts, or replace and install 200,000 thermal heat pumps.

    All the subsidies for oil does is line the pockets of people and companies who are already rolling in cash....whereas weatherizing 615,384 homes and building 99,304 Chevy Volts, and installing 200,000 geothermal heat pumps will put many more people to work than the oil subsidy waste every will....plus make us more energy efficient and less addicted to foreign oil. Hello....I say keep subsidizing the purchase of Chevy Volts.


    April 23, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • Steveo

      Why is the left allergic to these simple words?... PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY!

      I submit there are some that need help but whatever happened to family helping family or neighbor helping neighbor? Why must we increase government dependency?

      The pioneers and pilgrims are are spinning in their graves!

      April 24, 2012 at 11:32 am |
      • jean2009

        My oh my! Why is the greedy right not interested in saving the environment and cutting their own subsidized greed? What do you think $4 Billion in subsidies to Big Oil is other than corporate welfare.

        Why is the right allergic to these simple words .... CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY?

        I stand with the majority of Americans: Human Needs, not Corporate Greed.


        April 24, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
      • Steveo


        Don't act like the Dems are innocent here! Exactly what did Pelosi's House do about subsidies? Corporate responsibility does not negate personal responsibility.

        April 25, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
  6. Isanybodythere?

    What gives the president the right to do this? C.I.S.P.A. will be passed, its inevitable. As soon as that happens, everything will change. Apparently our government has the authority to impose sanctions unto other organizations which are intended to keep other foreign governments from using technology against its citizens...which is the exact opposite of what C.I.S.P.A. would allow the United States government to do. We really need to stop talking about all of the different political parties and looking for a scapegoat to blame. There is no "civil" way out of our current situation. Is it really that hard to realize? Everything is going to change...think about it: we have more nuclear weapons than peace-keeping people, we allow money to dictate the totality of life on this planet, and the individuals who control this world want to maintain their power. Its never been about peace and harmony, its always been about control. The thing is, the individuals in control aren't the ones to blame, we the people are. We have allowed them to carry out far too many absurd political actions for far too long because we have become so accustomed to an easy, mundane lifestyle where everything we want is a dollar's worth away. I'm sorry to say this but the time has passed for any positive change. We are going to suffer for our ignorance, there is nobody else to blame other than ourselves, not the president, not the wall-street bankers, and not even the individuals who own all of the corporations. These people wouldn't have any "power" if we hadn't put them in that position in the first place. We made this happen and we won't be able to reverse it. It is simply a matter of time...

    April 23, 2012 at 7:36 pm |
  7. Wendy Wyatt

    Right On!! #Obama2012 🙂

    April 23, 2012 at 10:03 pm |
  8. jean2009

    I ask why is the GOP so in love with Chinese slave labor practices that we ship jobs overseas; give subsidies to Big Oil that keeps us addicted to foreign energy sources, or are busy funding projects that are destined to turn our country into a barren environmental disaster like Madagascar (Keystone XL)? All the while they expend great energy fighting subsidies that would promote us using American "Built in the USA" labor and technology to get us off foreign sources energy and bring about a cleaner environment? I won't lay it all at the feet of the GOP but they are really one of the major roadblocks.


    April 24, 2012 at 8:07 am |
    • Steveo

      I ask why is the GOP so in love with Chinese slave labor practices that we ship jobs overseas
      1. 35% corporate tax rate
      2. Ask The Job Czar that very question! Just that he isn't GOP!, does that disqualify him?
      3. No subsidy equals higher fuel prices, which in turn causes everything else to become more costly! Exactly who will feel that pinch first? No party (including the DEMS) will change that because they know the consequences !

      April 24, 2012 at 11:37 am |
      • jean2009

        1.) Someone may state hypothetically that the corporate tax rate is 35%...but according to the Congressional Budget Office the effective rate is12.1%, the lowest in 40 years.
        So try floating another big one that one doesn't fly.


        3.) I think we can all categorically state subsidies have never and do not lower the price of fuel....if subsidies lowered the price of fuel we would not be seeing pain at the pump. We are currently paying $4 Billion in subsidies per year.....which isn't working. I say it is wiser to spend the $4 Billion by putting it where it definitely will cut fuel use. Cutting use will cut demand and lower the price.

        Once a home has a geothermal heat pump, or has been weatherized, or a city has a fleet of fuel efficient vehicles their use of fuel will be drastically cut.....it is all about cutting demand.


        April 24, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
      • Steveo


        Per the NY Times May 2011:

        "Topping out at 35 percent, America’s official corporate income tax rate trails that of only Japan, at 39.5 percent, which has said it plans to lower its rate". Looks like my arguement flies!

        As a homeowner, I am responsible for weatherizing it, not the government!

        My point is if gas prices go up, the lower class will get pinched first! Not gonna happen during an election year.

        You didn't mention anything about Immelt taking jobs to China! That was your first arguement!

        April 25, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  9. greg

    jean you make good points but the repos on this post will not aknowledge that. The president has the right idea and we need to back him on this. If a repo gets to the white house all these things will be done. They just don't want to back this president so they put up roadblocks.

    April 24, 2012 at 11:08 am |