Free Republic 3rd Quarter Fundraising Target: $85,000 Receipts & Pledges to-date: $77,503
91%  
Woo hoo!! And we're now over 91%!! Less than $7.5k to go!! We can do this!! Thank you all very much!!

Keyword: surveillancestate

Brevity: Headers | « Text »
  • Average Internet of Things device has 25 security flaws

    07/31/2014 9:54:43 AM PDT · by mojito · 28 replies
    The Telegraph ^ | 7/30/2014 | Matthew Sparkes
    The Internet of Things (IoT) has connected everything from smoke alarms to fridges and cars, making life easier and safer – but it has also given hackers a new way to attack their victims, warns HP. In a study of the ten most popular IoT devices (which it did not name in its report) HP found 250 potentially dangerous security vulnerabilities. The devices came from manufacturers of TVs, webcams, home thermostats, remote power outlets, sprinkler controllers, hubs for controlling multiple devices, door locks, home alarms, scales and garage door openers. All of the devices included remote smartphone applications which were...
  • NSA: Our systems are so complex we can’t stop them from deleting data wanted for lawsuit

    06/12/2014 9:18:36 AM PDT · by mojito · 30 replies
    WaPo ^ | 6/9/2014 | Andrea Peterson
    The National Security Agency recently used a novel argument for not holding onto information it collects about users online activity: it's too complex. The agency is facing a slew of lawsuits over its surveillance programs, many launched after former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked information on the agency's efforts last year. One suit that pre-dates the Snowden leaks, Jewel v. NSA, challenges the constitutionality of programs that the suit allege collect information about American's telephone and Internet activities. In a hearing Friday, U.S. District for the Northern District of California Judge Jeffrey S. White reversed an emergency order he had...
  • Holder announces task force on 'homegrown' terrorists

    06/04/2014 11:40:47 AM PDT · by mojito · 49 replies
    LA Times ^ | 6/2/2014 | Timothy M. Phelps
    Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder, Jr. on Monday announced the creation of a task force within the Justice Department to combat an “escalating danger” from “homegrown” terrorists within the United States.. The Justice Department, in a news release accompanying Holder’s weekly video address, cited a Congressional Research Service report last year that said domestic terrorists were responsible for more than two dozen incidents in the U.S. since 9/11. [....] The task force will chiefly comprise leaders from the FBI, the Justice Department’s National Security Division and U.S. Attorneys. Called the Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee, it is a recreation of a...
  • EU keen to revive passenger data bill after Brussels terrorist attack

    06/02/2014 12:47:19 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 1 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 06/02/2014 | Nikolaj Nielsen
    A bill designed to allow police access to EU airline passenger details would help prevent future attacks by suspected terrorists inside Europe, says the European Commission. EU home affairs spokesperson Michele Cercone on Monday (2 June) told reporters in Brussels the 2011 EU passenger records name (PNR) proposal—which has been stalled due to opposition from the European Parliament—“could facilitate the endeavors of the member states” to fight what he said was a growing internal security threat. The proposal would oblige airlines flying to and from the EU to hand over the personal details of the passengers onboard. The renewed interest...
  • Inside the Ring: Memo outlines Obama’s plan to use the military against citizens

    05/29/2014 9:02:21 AM PDT · by mojito · 49 replies
    Washington Times ^ | 5/28/2014 | Bill Gertz
    A 2010 Pentagon directive on military support to civilian authorities details what critics say is a troubling policy that envisions the Obama administration’s potential use of military force against Americans. The directive contains noncontroversial provisions on support to civilian fire and emergency services, special events and the domestic use of the Army Corps of Engineers. The troubling aspect of the directive outlines presidential authority for the use of military arms and forces, including unarmed drones, in operations against domestic unrest. “This appears to be the latest step in the administration’s decision to use force within the United States against its...
  • Chicago mayor pushes plan requiring all gun sales to be videotaped

    05/29/2014 5:04:03 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 26 replies
    Fox News ^ | May 28, 2014 | (With AP)
    Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel introduced a proposal Wednesday that would require all gun sales in the city to be videotaped, as part of a plan to allow gun stores back in Chicago under very tight restrictions. The measure, which would also ban gun stores near schools and parks, was introduced Wednesday at a city council meeting without discussion. It was then referred to the council’s Public Safety Committee. A vote on the proposal has not been scheduled. …
  • James Clapper Giving Speeches To Students, Begging Them To Stop Thinking Of Ed Snowden As A Hero

    04/21/2014 4:12:15 PM PDT · by opentalk · 32 replies
    techdirt ^ | April 21, 2013 | Mike Masnick
    A few weeks back, I read a Washington Post story "Inside the admissions process at George Washington University" and noted this interesting tidbit towards the end: GW also asks students to list a role model and two words to describe themselves. As for herself, Freitag said, she would list “Martha Stewart/Tina Fey” and “sassy/classy.” This year, she’s seeing a lot of Edward Snowden citations. I had thought about writing it up, but decided it was a pretty small thing, really. It's not secret that, as a group, younger people have a much more favorable impression of Snowden than older people....
  • The Pig Trap (Some Observations on the Death of the American Republic)

    04/19/2014 10:52:51 AM PDT · by mojito · 8 replies
    Taxicab Depressions ^ | 4/14/2014 | Taxi Hack
    ....I see only two paths for America today. First, some miracle will happen in which a couple hundred constitutionalists like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee and Trey Gowdy will be elected to the House and Senate over the next few election cycles, and something resembling the Founder’s republic will be restored, but given the current climate of relentless progressivism, massive bureaucracy, government dependence, and voter ignorance, that seems like a very remote possibility. The second path is that complacency, ignorance, and indifference will allow more progressives and communists to be elected, the federal government will continue to grow and amass...
  • US should 'keep control of net' says Clinton

    03/24/2014 5:05:48 PM PDT · by mandaladon · 23 replies
    BBC ^ | 24 Mar 2014
    Net freedom could suffer after the US steps back from its role as ultimate overseer of the global network, former US President Bill Clinton has said. Many of the governments keen to help oversee the net just wanted to use it to silence dissent, he said. Mr Clinton made his comments during a debate sponsored by his charitable foundation, Clinton Global Initiative. The US had been a good steward of the net and had helped keep it open and accessible, he said. Free speech Mr Clinton said it was clear ongoing revelations about National Security Agency surveillance had fuelled demands...
  • The Federal Spying Budget

    03/24/2014 10:40:59 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 6 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | March 24, 2014 | Chris Edwards
    The latest revelations regarding the NSA’s bulk data collection illustrate the vastness of the government’s spying apparatus. That vastness costs taxpayers a lot of money. The cost of the federal spy budget used to be secret, which was a bizarre thing for a government that is supposed to be of the people, by the people, and for the people. But in recent years, policymakers have taken a step toward transparency and released figures on total intelligence spending. The federal spy budget consists of spending on the National Intelligence Program (NIP) and the Military Intelligence Program (MIP). The Federation of American...
  • It’s true: Government agents are infiltrating online communities

    02/26/2014 5:22:57 PM PST · by Nachum · 109 replies
    Glenn Beck ^ | 2/26/14 | Glenn Beck
    If you have been following Glenn since his days at Fox News, you may remember the expose he did on Obama ‘regulatory czar’ Cass Sunstein and his nudge theory. One of Sunstein’s more disturbing ideas involved government operatives infiltrating online communities in order to disseminate false information. As Glenn describes it, the goal was to “pose, infiltrate, and discredit.” Anyone who actually took Sunstein’s words at face value were mocked and labeled conspiracy theorists. But, as it turns out, it was all true. “The English version of the NSA is the GCHQ… The English NSA has now revealed that that’s...
  • Christine O’Donnell: I was a victim of the IRS

    02/22/2014 12:53:17 PM PST · by Robwin · 42 replies
    New York Post ^ | February 22, 2014 | Christine O’Donnell
    Whether Democrat or Republican, do you really want your private tax information leaked with impunity? On March 9, 2010, around 10 a.m., I announced my plans to run for senate representing Delaware. Later that same day, my office received a call from a reporter asking about my taxes. It’s since come out, after a halting and unenthusiastic investigation, that a Delaware Department of Revenue employee named David Smith accessed my records that day at approximately 2 p.m. — out of curiosity, he says. That these records ended up in the hands of the press is just a coincidence, the IRS...
  • States look to rein in government surveillance

    02/05/2014 2:46:24 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 4 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Feb 5, 2014 4:25 AM EST | Nigel Duara
    Angry over revelations of National Security Agency surveillance and frustrated with what they consider outdated digital privacy laws, state lawmakers around the nation are proposing bills to curtail the powers of law enforcement to monitor and track citizens. Their efforts in at least 14 states are a direct message to the federal government: If you don’t take action to strengthen privacy, we will. “We need to stand up and protect our liberty,” said Republican Missouri state Sen. Rob Schaaf, author of a digital privacy bill. Police groups, however, say the moves will in some cases hinder efforts to deter or...
  • Obama tightens reins on surveillance programs

    01/17/2014 7:17:31 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 11 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Jan. 17, 2014 4:54 PM EST | Julie Pace
    Tightening the reins on the nation’s sweeping surveillance operations, President Barack Obama on Friday ordered new limits on the way intelligence officials access phone records from hundreds of millions of Americans—and moved toward eventually stripping the massive data collection from the government’s hands. But Obama’s highly anticipated intelligence recommendations left many key details unresolved, most notably who might take over as keeper of the vast trove of U.S. phone records. Final decisions on that and other major questions were left to the Justice Department and to intelligence agencies that oppose changing surveillance operations, and to a Congress that is divided...
  • Obama’s NSA announcements just the starting point

    01/15/2014 8:36:41 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 10 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Jan 15, 2014 8:04 PM EST | Stephen Braun and Julie Pace
    President Barack Obama’s blueprint for overhauling the government’s sweeping surveillance program is just the starting point. The reality is few changes could happen quickly without unlikely agreements from a divided Congress and federal judges. The most contentious debate probably will be over the future of the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of telephone records from millions of Americans. In his highly anticipated speech on Friday, Obama is expected to back the idea of changing the program. But he’ll leave the specifics to Congress, according to U.S. officials briefed on the White House review. …
  • Thousands of Porn Watchers Have Names Released to Public

    12/15/2013 11:15:57 AM PST · by nickcarraway · 41 replies
    New York Daily News ^ | SATURDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2013 | David Harding
    The release of names is a big mistake, say some lawyers, based on the court not knowing the difference between streaming and downloading copyrighted material.Thousands of porn watchers have had their personal details released by a German court. Some 20,000 people who watched porn on a U.S.-based website have had their names and addresses released by a court and could end up paying a fine. Cease and desist letters were sent to people who had accessed the smut site, Redtube. They were traced after a German court released their personal details in a case where people were claiming videos had...
  • Russia Hopes Its YotaPhone Worries Apple

    12/04/2013 10:11:02 PM PST · by cunning_fish · 15 replies
    WSJ blog ^ | December 4, 2013, 1:21 PM | Lukas I. Alpert
    MOSCOW—The space race may be over but Russia hopes the smartphone race has just begun. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev was among the first to receive a YotaPhone—the country’s first foray into the hyper-competitive smartphone market—and was told industry pace-setter Apple Inc. better watch its back. “Is Apple concerned about our smartphone?” he asked Sergey Chemezov, the head of Russia’s state-run defense corporation, Rostec, who gave him the phone on Wednesday hours after it hit the market. “Definitely,” Mr. Chemezov replied, according to a transcript of the exchange posted on the government’s website.....
  • EU Proposal to Monitor “Intolerant” Citizens

    11/11/2013 7:36:57 PM PST · by Olog-hai · 19 replies
    Gatestone Institute ^ | October 28, 2013 5:00 am | Soeren Kern
    While European leaders are busy expressing public indignation over reports of American espionage operations in the European Union, the European Parliament is quietly considering a proposal that calls for the direct surveillance of any EU citizen suspected of being “intolerant.” Critics say the measure—which seeks to force the national governments of all 28 EU member states to establish “special administrative units” to monitor any individual or group expressing views that the self-appointed guardians of European multiculturalism deem to be “intolerant”—represents an unparalleled threat to free speech in a Europe where citizens are already regularly punished for expressing the “wrong” opinions,...
  • Kerry: Some NSA surveillance reached “too far”

    11/01/2013 7:28:31 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 10 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Nov 1, 2013 6:11 PM EDT | Deb Riechmann
    Secretary of State John Kerry’s remark that some National Security Agency surveillance “reached too far” was the first time a high-ranking Obama administration official acknowledged that U.S. snooping abroad might be seen as overzealous. After launching into a vigorous defense of surveillance as an effective counterterror tool, Kerry acknowledged to a video conference on open government in London that “in some cases, I acknowledge to you, as has the president, that some of these actions have reached too far, and we are going to make sure that does not happen in the future.” …
  • White House OKd spying on allies, U.S. intelligence officials say

    10/29/2013 8:42:40 AM PDT · by mojito · 59 replies
    LA Times ^ | 10/28/2013 | Ken Dilanian and Janet Stobart
    The White House and State Department signed off on surveillance targeting phone conversations of friendly foreign leaders, current and former U.S. intelligence officials said Monday, pushing back against assertions that President Obama and his aides were unaware of the high-level eavesdropping. Professional staff members at the National Security Agency and other U.S. intelligence agencies are angry, these officials say, believing the president has cast them adrift as he tries to distance himself from the disclosures by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden that have strained ties with close allies. The resistance emerged as the White House said it would curtail foreign...
  • ‘Virtual borders’ scheme to track every non-EU citizen

    10/09/2013 9:54:29 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 4 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 10/02/13 @ 09:27 | Nikolaj Nielsen
    The European Commission wants to fingerprint anyone who enters the EU under its “smart borders” proposal, but critics say it is too costly, disproportionate, and risks violating numerous privacy rights. The commission says the system is necessary to update border control checks, reduce waiting times, and help border guards better implement EU border rules by pooling the personal details of any non-EU citizen over the age of 12 into a database. All ten fingerprints would be scanned to ensure that anyone who tosses their ID can still be identified if necessary. The package includes the Entry/Exit system (EES) and the...
  • NSA's Utah Spy Supercenter Crippled By Power Surges

    10/08/2013 10:19:57 AM PDT · by mojito · 66 replies
    ZeroHedge ^ | 10/8/2013 | Tyler Durden
    ...[W]e ran a story in March 2012 which exposed the NSA's unprecedented domestic espionage project, codenamed Stellar Wind, and specifically the $1.4+ billion data center spy facility located in Bluffdale, Utah, which spans more than one million square feet, uses 65 megawatts of energy (enough to power a city of more than 20,000), and can store exabytes or even zettabytes of data (a zettabyte is 100 million times larger than all the printed material in the Library of Congress), consisting of every single electronic communication in the world, whether captured with a warrant or not. Yet despite all signs to...
  • Gov’t: Court should not allow disclosure

    10/03/2013 1:42:24 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 5 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Oct 2, 2013 9:41 PM EDT | Pete Yost
    A federal court should not permit five leading Internet companies to reveal how often they are ordered to turn over information about their customers in national security investigations, the government argued in papers released Wednesday. In a filing with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the government said that allowing the companies to release such detailed information “would be invaluable to our adversaries,” providing a clear picture of where the government’s surveillance efforts are directed and how its surveillance activities change over time, the court papers stated. Companies seeking to release the information about the orders received are Google Inc., Microsoft...
  • Experts Lambast NSA Spying: Daily Whistleblower News

    09/23/2013 7:43:02 AM PDT · by shego · 6 replies
    MIT Technology Review: Bruce Schneier – NSA Spying is Making Us Less Safe Prominent cryptographer and security expert Bruce Schneier, who has been working with The Guardian on the disclosures of NSA surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden, gave an interview detailing what the disclosures have truly revealed, how the actions have made Americans less safe, that more huge revelations "might" be coming, and that the average person interested in privacy should advocate for political change. Also, the New York Times' editorial board has reacted to recent disclosures showing that the NSA weakened software encryption standards and apparently can decrypt anything. The...
  • 4 Principles for a Libertarian National Security State

    09/18/2013 8:53:22 AM PDT · by shego · 11 replies
    Reason ^ | 9/18/13 | Nick Gillespie
    1. Transparency uber alles. One of the main reasons that Barack Obama's approval ratings are in the crapper is because of his epic failure to live up to his promise to run what he guaranteed would be the most transparent administration EVAH. That's especially true when it comes to national security issues. Even the most hardened anti-terror hawks have been shocked by revelations of widespread secret drone strikes, extra-judicial kill lists, a war on leakers and journalists, and ubiquitous snooping on Americans.... 2. Legal authority is not optional. Whether we're discussing the use of drones, metadata dragnets, or anything else...
  • Will Israel be the World's First ‘No Cash’ Society?

    09/17/2013 2:23:47 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 37 replies
    INN ^ | 9/17/2013, 9:38 PM | David Lev
    The government on Tuesday authorized establishment of a committee that will examine ways to eliminate cash from the Israeli economy—the better to prevent citizens from cheating on their taxes. The committee will be chaired by Harel Locker, director of the Prime Minister’s Office. Cash is easily passed from individual to individual, and transactions using cash can take place without the tax man’s supervision. Not so electronic transactions; with modern computers, banks can keep tabs on how much people deposit into their accounts and how much they withdraw, while credit card companies have an up-to-the-second record of how much people spend....
  • Facebook considers adding profile photos to facial recognition

    08/29/2013 11:28:05 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 44 replies
    Reuters ^ | Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:17pm EDT | Alexei Oreskovic
    Facebook Inc is considering incorporating most of its 1 billion-plus members’ profile photos into its growing facial recognition database, expanding the scope of the social network’s controversial technology. The possible move, which Facebook revealed in an update to its data use policy on Thursday, is intended to improve the performance of its “Tag Suggest” feature. The feature uses facial recognition technology to speed up the process of labeling or “tagging” friends and acquaintances who appear in photos posted on the network. … The changes would come at a time when Facebook and other Internet companies’ privacy practices are under scrutiny,...
  • New Details Show Broader NSA Surveillance Reach

    08/20/2013 5:51:05 PM PDT · by John W · 59 replies
    The Wall Street Journal ^ | August 20, 2013 | SIOBHAN GORMAN and JENNIFER VALENTINO-DEVRIES
    WASHINGTON—The National Security Agency—which possesses only limited legal authority to spy on U.S. citizens—has built a surveillance network that covers more Americans' Internet communications than officials have publicly disclosed, current and former officials say. The system has the capacity to reach roughly 75% of all U.S. Internet traffic in the hunt for foreign intelligence, including a wide array of communications by foreigners and Americans. In some cases, it retains the written content of emails sent between citizens within the U.S. and also filters domestic phone calls made with Internet technology, these people say. Details of these surveillance programs were gathered...
  • How Obama has abused the Patriot Act

    08/19/2013 11:29:34 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 34 replies
    LA Times ^ | Aug 19, 2013 | By Jim Sensenbrenner
    On Aug. 9, the Obama administration released a previously secret legal interpretation of the Patriot Act that it used to justify the bulk collection of every American's phone records. The strained reasoning in the 22-page memo won't survive long in public light, which is itself one of the strongest arguments for transparency in government. As the late Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis wrote, "Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants." Recent revelations by the Washington Post emphasize the need for greater transparency. The National Security Agency failed to report privacy violations that are serious infringements of constitutional rights....
  • Two Dems Warn NSA Violations Just ‘Tip of a Larger Iceberg’

    08/17/2013 1:48:52 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 27 replies
    PJ Media ^ | August 16, 2013 - 2:59 pm | Bridget Johnson
    A pair of civil-liberties Democrats whom the White House tried to appease in a closed-door meeting warned today that fresh reports of thousands of privacy violations by the National Security Agency are just the “tip of a larger iceberg.” On Thursday, the Washington Post published its report of a May 2012 audit leaked by former contractor Edward Snowden that found 2,776 violations over the previous year of executive orders and Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act provisions governing spying on Americans or foreign targets in the U.S. These included both computer and operator errors. Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Mark Udall (D-Colo.)...
  • Justice Department Seeks Oversight of Apple's iTunes Store

    08/05/2013 5:17:21 AM PDT · by illiac · 11 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | 8/5/13 | Multiple Writers
    Apple Inc.'s AAPL +1.27%e-book problem is spilling over into its other media businesses. After winning last month an e-books antitrust suit against Apple, the Justice Department on Friday asked a federal judge to limit Apple's influence in the publishing market and give the government oversight of the iTunes Store and App Store. . The government proposals, if accepted, could give music, television-show and content owners more leverage in negotiations with a company that has been an aggressive bargainer in opening up traditional media to digital distribution
  • Video: Graham says sequestration will hurt us on the next terror threat

    08/04/2013 10:31:41 AM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 31 replies
    Hot Air ^ | 12:31 pm on August 4, 2013 | by Jazz Shaw
    In the “credit where credit is due” department, one thing you can say for Lindsey Graham is that he clearly doesn’t care all that much about politics or future elections. The Senator was trotted out on CNN this morning for a chat with Candy Crowley where they discussed the current terror threat and embassy closings. An important topic to be sure, but Graham couldn’t help himself, it seems, and had to weave some comments on sequestration into the larger story with a side helping of praise for the NSA and the White House. (Hat tip to Andrew Johnson at The...
  • Judge Orders Google to Unmask Blogger

    07/24/2013 12:08:28 PM PDT · by AtlasStalled · 41 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | 07/24/13 | Jacob Gershman
    Google may not shield the identity of an anonymous blogger who claimed a Manhattan lawyer was a “crooked” and “shady” attorney, a judge ruled.
  • FBI Can Turn On Your Phone Mic?

    08/03/2013 11:06:50 AM PDT · by Red in Blue PA · 130 replies
    A former U.S. official told The Journal that some of the technology allows the FBI to remotely activate the microphones in phones running on Google Inc.'s Android software to record conversations.
  • FBI pressures Internet providers to install surveillance software

    08/03/2013 10:40:40 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 57 replies
    c|net ^ | Aug 2, 2013 | by Declan McCullagh
    CNET has learned the FBI has developed custom "port reader" software to intercept Internet metadata in real time. And, in some cases, it wants to force Internet providers to use the software. The U.S. government is quietly pressuring telecommunications providers to install eavesdropping technology deep inside companies' internal networks to facilitate surveillance efforts. FBI officials have been sparring with carriers, a process that has on occasion included threats of contempt of court, in a bid to deploy government-provided software capable of intercepting and analyzing entire communications streams. The FBI's legal position during these discussions is that the software's real-time interception...
  • U.S. Outlines N.S.A.'s Culling of Data for All Domestic Calls

    07/31/2013 9:20:20 AM PDT · by Nachum · 61 replies
    New York Times ^ | 7/31/13 | Charlie Savage
    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Wednesday released formerly classified documents outlining a once-secret program of the National Security Agency that is collecting records of all domestic phone calls in the United States, as top officials testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee. As the hearing began, The Guardian newspaper published another document from the archives of Top Secret surveillance matters leaked to it by the former N.S.A. contractor Edward J. Snowden. It was a 32-page presentation describing the N.S.A.´s XKeyscore program, by which N.S.A. analysts can mine vast databases of phone and Internet information the agency has vacuumed up.
  • Kafka’s America: Secret Courts, Secret Laws, and Total Surveillance

    07/30/2013 10:19:10 AM PDT · by xzins · 24 replies
    The Rutherford Institute ^ | July 22, 2013 | John W. Whitehead
    “Logic may indeed be unshakeable, but it cannot withstand a man who is determined to live. Where was the judge he had never seen? Where was the High Court he had never reached? He raised his hands and spread out all his fingers. But the hands of one of the men closed round his throat, just as the other drove the knife deep into his heart and turned it twice.” – Franz Kafka, The Trial In a bizarre and ludicrous attempt at “transparency,” the Obama administration has announced that it asked a secret court to approve a secret order to...
  • Resisting the Surveillance State

    07/28/2013 7:44:17 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 21 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | July 28, 2013 | Steve Chapman
    George W. Bush and Dick Cheney spent eight years choking personal privacy to within an inch of its life. After they were done, Barack Obama showed up, expressed heartfelt sympathy and stood on its throat. But despite their efforts, it isn't quite dead. Last week, it showed definite signs of life. That happened thanks to the combined efforts of people in Congress on the right and the left who assembled under a figurative banner reading, "They're liars and we don't trust them." Appalled by the mass collection of phone records by the National Security Agency, they proposed that such surveillance...
  • Liberty Slipping: 10 Things You Could Do in 1975 That You Can't Do Now

    07/23/2013 7:26:25 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 140 replies
    Economic Policy Journal Blog ^ | July 22, 2013 | Robert Wenzel
    In 1975: 1.You could buy an airline ticket and fly without ever showing an ID. 2.You could buy cough syrup without showing an ID. 3.You could buy and sell gold coins without showing an ID 4.You could buy a gun without showing an ID 5.You could pull as much cash out of your bank account without the bank filing a report with the government. 6.You could get a job without having to prove you were an American. 7.You could buy cigarettes without showing an ID 8.You could have a phone conversation without the government knowing who you called and who...
  • Clapper warns against measure to rein in NSA

    07/24/2013 3:35:05 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 38 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Jul 24, 2013 2:05 PM EDT | Donna Cassata
    The director of the National Intelligence says an effort in the House to rein in the National Security Agency’s electronic surveillance program would dismantle a critical tool in the fight against terrorism. James Clapper issued the statement just hours ahead of a House vote on an amendment by Republican Rep. Justin Amash that would end the statutory authority under the USA PATRIOT Act for the NSA to collect hundreds of millions of phone records. …
  • Attorney Whitehead: ‘We Live in a Police State’

    07/23/2013 4:17:01 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 25 replies
    Newsmax ^ | Tuesday, 23 Jul 2013 01:15 PM | Bill Hoffmann and John Bachman
    The U.S. government’s growing surveillance of Americans has transformed the nation into an “electronic concentration camp,” top civil-liberties attorney John W. Whitehead says. “It’s moving so rapidly you have to feel creepy because you're being watched. Everybody has a file if you do anything electronically,” Whitehead, author the new book “A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State,” told Newsmax TV. … Whitehead—who founded the Rutherford Institute in Virginia, which helps promote civil liberties and human rights—has been researching the growth of the National Security Agency since the 1980s. The agency has been under fire for its collection of...
  • The Ruling Class Consensus On Domestic Spying (Must Read)

    06/24/2013 12:22:53 PM PDT · by mojito · 15 replies
    Library of Law and Liberty ^ | 6/23/2013 | Angelo M. Codevilla
    From Barack Obama to Karl Rove, the ruling class is in unison: The NSA’s collection of data on virtually all Americans is essential to preventing you from “being blown to smithereens on your morning commute” – as the Wall Street Journal editorial put it. In the words of General Keith Alexander, director of NSA, this surveillance has “helped to prevent” “dozens of terrorist events.” Later, the tally rose to “over fifty.” Project Constant Informant, which tracks essentially all American phone calls, allows matching the account holder’s identity with each call’s precise location in time and place. Another, PRISM, gives access...
  • Obama’s Soft Totalitarianism: Europe Must Protect Itself from America

    06/18/2013 12:32:06 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 25 replies
    Der Spiegel ^ | June 17, 2013 – 06:09 PM | Jakob Augstein
    On Tuesday, Barack Obama is coming to Germany. But who, really, will be visiting? He is the 44th president of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. He is an intelligent lawyer. And he is a Nobel Peace Prize laureate. But is he a friend? The revelations brought to us by IT expert Edward Snowden have made certain what paranoid computer geeks and left-wing conspiracy theorists have long claimed: that we are being watched. All the time and everywhere. And it is the Americans who are doing the watching. … We’re currently in the...
  • The German PRISM: Berlin Wants to Spy Too

    06/18/2013 12:07:43 AM PDT · by Olog-hai
    Der Spiegel ^ | June 17, 2013 – 01:46 PM | (Spiegel staff)
    Just a few days ago, the man whom many Germans now see as one of the greatest villains in the world visited Berlin. Keith Alexander, the head of the world’s most powerful intelligence operation, the National Security Agency (NSA), had arranged meetings with important representatives of the German government … Why is the German government reacting so calmly to something that it should find alarming? Perhaps because these revelations are nothing new for it? Because the Germans would like to enjoy the same capabilities that PRISM affords the Americans? Or because our friends from the other side of the Atlantic...
  • The New American Enemies List ... Victor Davis Hanson

    06/17/2013 6:31:01 AM PDT · by Rummyfan · 13 replies
    PJ Media ^ | 17 June 2013 | Victor Davis Hanson
    The vast majority of the annual shooting homicides are committed by inner-city and minority youths below the age of 30. Handguns are involved in 80% of all murders. Rifles and shotguns account for less than 10% of homicides. No matter; the National Rifle Association is now blamed for generic gun violence, especially the mass shootings at schools, even though usually no one knows of any proposed gun law — barring outright confiscation of previously purchased firearms, bullets, and clips — that would have prevented the shooters at Sandy Hook and Columbine. Gun merchants are blamed by the president while in...
  • Obamacare will share personal health info with federal, state agencies

    06/17/2013 7:17:32 AM PDT · by george76 · 25 replies
    Washington Examiner ^ | JUNE 17, 2013 | PAUL BEDARD
    A new rule issued late Friday requires state, federal and local agencies as well as health insurers to swap the protected personal health information of anybody seeking to join the new health care program that will be enforced by the Internal Revenue Service. Personal health information, or PHI, is highly protected under federal law, but the latest ruling from the Department of Health and Human Services allows agencies to trade the information to verify that Obamacare applicants are getting the minimum amount of health insurance coverage they need from the health "exchanges." The ruling, explained on pages 72-73 of the...
  • The False Excuse of National Security

    06/17/2013 6:12:14 AM PDT · by RoosterRedux · 10 replies
    AmericanThinker.com ^ | 6/17/2013 | Jonathon Moseley
    Fighting terrorism? Don't be a chump. Excuses usually trade on something very important and genuine. But what is truly important can be abused, precisely because it should impress us. Government tries to fool us with phony excuses to do whatever officials and bureaucrats want to do. The NSA, et al., failed to detect the Tsarnaev brothers -- even after being tipped off by Russia -- before the Boston Marathon bombing. FBI agents actually investigated the Tsarnaev family in detail. Russia's tip would justify continuing, specific search warrants and phone taps. Yet the NSA and FBI never saw the bumbling brothers...
  • NSA admits listening to U.S. phone calls without warrants

    06/16/2013 5:30:22 AM PDT · by Hotlanta Mike · 56 replies
    CNET ^ | June 15, 2013 | Declan McCullagh |
    National Security Agency discloses in secret Capitol Hill briefing that thousands of analysts can listen to domestic phone calls. That authorization appears to extend to e-mail and text messages too.
  • We Are This Far From A Turnkey Totalitarian State (Must Read - The NSA's Secret Utah Data Center)

    06/15/2013 7:17:32 PM PDT · by xzins · 106 replies
    Blacklisted News ^ | 5 Jun 13 | Zero Hedge
    <p>George Orwell was right. He was just 30 years early.</p> <p>In its April cover story, Wired has an exclusive report on the NSA's Utah Data Center, which is a must read for anyone who believes any privacy is still a possibility in the United States: "A project of immense secrecy, it is the final piece in a complex puzzle assembled over the past decade. Its purpose: to intercept, decipher, analyze, and store vast swaths of the world’s communications as they zap down from satellites and zip through the underground and undersea cables of international, foreign, and domestic networks.... Flowing through its servers and routers and stored in near-bottomless databases will be all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls, and Google searches, as well as all sorts of personal data trails—parking receipts, travel itineraries, bookstore purchases, and other digital “pocket litter.”... The heavily fortified $2 billion center should be up and running in September 2013." In other words, in just over 1 year, virtually anything one communicates through any traceable medium, or any record of one's existence in the electronic medium, which these days is everything, will unofficially be property of the US government to deal with as it sees fit.</p>
  • On PRISM, partisanship and propaganda (incredible article)

    06/14/2013 8:45:37 PM PDT · by chessplayer · 78 replies
    I haven't been able to write this week here because I've been participating in the debate over the fallout from last week's NSA stories, and because we are very busy working on and writing the next series of stories that will begin appearing very shortly. I did, though, want to note a few points, and particularly highlight what Democratic Rep. Loretta Sanchez said after Congress on Wednesday was given a classified briefing by NSA officials on the agency's previously secret surveillance activities: "What we learned in there is significantly more than what is out in the media today. . ....