Democrats, the Filibuster, and Theft
Not often can I say that I've scooped my local CLS blog-rival, the so-left-we-don't-blog-on-the-right-of-your-browser Filibuster. They've decided that the 'scoop of the year' must be this Boston Globe piece on how Republican's 'infiltrated' 'secret' files.
Of course, readers of this site will have been alerted quite a while ago that the 'hacking' consisted of nothing more than Democrats leaving their files on servers that hadn't been secured. By any reasonable definition of 'hacking' or 'intrusion' (and I'm sure my lefty-but-fair techie-blogger Len will back me up on this), taking a file from a folder you've been given access to just doesn't cut it. Furthermore, everyone agrees that the mistake was made because the Democrats hired their own technical consultants to revise the way the committee's computers worked, and those consultants screwed the pooch. 
This makes one ponder at the opening paragraph of the Boston Globe article:
Republican staff members of the US Senate Judiciary Commitee infiltrated opposition computer files for a year, monitoring secret strategy memos and periodically passing on copies to the media, Senate officials told The Globe.
You see, 'secret' here means 'put in a folder where anyone on the committee can see them, and not labelled secret anywhere thereon' and 'infiltrated' means 'opening up the shared folder of your workgroup' (which some of you might think of as your G: drive if you're at Columbia).
Of course, the Filibuster mentions the story twice, and claim that the GOP 'stole' these documents. Since the Filibuster and the Columbia Political Union are part of my university, I'm going to throw down that gauntlet: find me a statute, make me a case, and given a decent grasp of the technical competencies involved show me how this is theft. (Note that the Globe either had fewer cajones or more caution than to call this activity 'stealing.')
Update: The Boston Globe continues its coverage, pointing to the Committee for Justice's fact sheet arguing no rules were broken. I'm not sure I buy that: there may very well have been some ethical rules broken. But if so, theft seems pretty extreme.
 Full disclosure: I received every bit of my formal training in how to be a Systems Administrator from the U.S. Senate. If the mistake is what the papers have said it was, this was a basic error. No one who received Senate training should have made this mistake.