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Waiting For Everyman

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Name: Ann
Gender: Female
Hometown: Towson, Maryland
Home country: USA
Current location: near Washington, D.C.
Member since: Mon Jun 23, 2008, 12:17 PM
Number of posts: 7,519

About Me

My namesake... http://youtu.be/GgXzWhexJh0

Journal Archives

Heads Up: Hearing on Government Surveillance now on C-SPAN

Just an FYI for any who are interested and can catch it.

Franken is questioning now. I think it's been on less than an hour.
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Wed Jul 31, 2013, 10:20 PM (0 replies)

Interesting: "the United States does not consider Snowden a spy"

From the first paragraph after your "snip":

Barack Obama has already signaled that the United States does not consider Snowden a spy, which commits himself to refusing any sort of swap.

Any comment?
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Tue Jul 16, 2013, 05:50 AM (0 replies)

Sen. Church's words bear repeating. (quoted in the article)

In contrast, during the 1975 Congressional hearings on NSA, Senator Frank Church stated that:

"I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision, so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return."


That is what the head of the committee had to say after conducting extensive hearings into our government's secret activities in 1975. Since then, technologoy has exploded and oversight has gone blind. We're in some trouble by now. The committee's reports are very interesting, and these were some serious people who did a very serious job of it. They really tried to find out what was going on, which nobody has done nearly as well since.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_Committee


Btw, if this mass collection of personal information that we are hearing about now was really of any effective use in preventing terrorism... then why did the Boston Bombing happen? Why didn't the Feds know all about it beforehand? This isn't being used against terrorism, it's being used against us.
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Sun Jul 14, 2013, 11:09 AM (1 replies)

John Cusack, Free Press, StopWatching.US, & Restore the Fourth: Demand End to US Spying

Craig Aaron July 2, 2013

A few of the organizations behind the StopWatching.Us campaign and an organizer of the Restore the Fourth rallies happening across the country on July 4 held a press conference today on the public response to NSA spying and surveillance programs.

Free Press was joined on the call by Harvey Anderson of Mozilla, Kim Lemkuhl of ColorofChange.org, Rainey Reitman of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Anna Wilmesher of Restore the Fourth — and John Cusack (!), the actor and board member of the Freedom of the Press Foundation.

We’ll post the recording of the call here as soon as it’s available.

Here’s the text of my statement from today’s call:


I’m the president and CEO of Free Press and the Free Press Action Fund, and I’m here today representing our more than 600,000 Free Press activists from across the country.

Free Press is a founding member of the StopWatching.Us coalition and is supporting the Restore the Fourth events.

We joined with our allies in these efforts because of our commitment to defending Internet freedom and press freedom. Right now, our rights to connect and communicate are in serious jeopardy.

Don’t believe those who suggest the American people don’t care; those pushing that line are just hoping people won’t find out what’s really going on. As we learn more every week about the unchecked surveillance and the corporate collusion, the outcry will grow louder and louder.

This is a nonpartisan effort uniting strange bedfellows from across the political spectrum. But I would say to my friends in progressive and Democratic circles that if you opposed attacks on our civil liberties under Bush and Cheney, you must oppose what the Obama administration is doing.

This is not about right and left. It is about right and wrong.

A word about the press: Orwell said journalism is printing what someone else doesn’t want printed. The journalists at the Guardian, the Washington Post, McClatchy and other outlets pushing forward this story deserve our admiration and gratitude.

The efforts to smear, slander and silence these reporters must be challenged. The ability for these reporters — and all reporters — to do their jobs must be safeguarded.

To be honest, the questions being raised about journalists versus activists confuse me. As far as I’m concerned, we need way more of both.

This intrusion into our private lives will not be solved behind closed doors. We need to bring these government and corporate activities into the light of day, and the only way that will happen is if millions more people get involved and demand accountability, demand change, demand the truth.

Thank you.


Want to join the call for NSA accountability? Take action now at StopWatching.Us and then find a Restore the Fourth event near you. I’ll be speaking at the rally in Farragut Square in Washington, D.C. Hope to see you there!

http://www.freepress.net/blog/2013/07/02/john-cusack-free-press-stopwatchingus-and-restore-fourth-demand-end-nsa-spying


This post needs some fireworks. Happy 4th of July, DUers!

Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Wed Jul 3, 2013, 09:39 AM (9 replies)

Russ Tice, former NSA whistleblower, reveals some new secrets of his own

This interview is from June 19th, 2013, a few weeks ago. The subject was the Snowden NSA leaks, but Tice got onto the subject of the potential for the NSA (or its many contractors) to blackmail our political leaders, at about 45 minutes into it.



Categories or wiretaps he saw himself: Lots of the following...

journalists and news agencies
high-ranking military officers
lawyers and law firms

members of Congress - Senate and House, both parties, especially those on the Intelligence Committees, Armed Services Committees, and Judiciary Committees

congressional staff
judges, 1 on the Supreme Court; 2 former FISA court judges
State Department officials
Executive Branch, including in the White House
anti-war groups
civil rights groups
US international corporations
Banks and financial firms
NGO's like the Red Cross


Named wiretaps he personally saw and processed:

Barack Obama in 2004
Hillary Clinton
Sen. Diane Feinstein
Sen. Orrin Hatch
Sen. Patrick Leahy
Sen. Carl Levin
Rep. James Saxton
Rep. Peter Hoekstra
Rep. Tom Davis
Sen. Henry Waxman
Sen. Jay Rockefeller
Sen. John McCain
Sen. Evan Bayh
Gen. Colin Powell
Gen. Eric Shinseki
Gen. David Petraeus


He said without hesitation that he thinks Petraeus was taken down by an NSA wiretap, possibly by Gen. Alexander. He said that the one Supreme Court judge he saw an order for was Alito, but that his coworkers still inside the NSA say that all 9 have been tapped.

He is very worried about the opportunity NSA has to blackmail political figures, in fact he says that is principally why he became a whistlblower. The capability is certainly there, which is a problem in itself. The potential for blackmail has always been recognized as a security risk. Now we have that to the nth degree within our own government.

Tice calls today's NSA "Hoover on steroids". That really seems to be an understatement, if anything.
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Tue Jul 2, 2013, 03:57 PM (10 replies)

26 Sens.: NSA is relying on a "secret body of law" to collect massive amounts of data on US citizens

A bipartisan group of 26 US senators has written to intelligence chiefs to complain that the administration is relying on a "secret body of law" to collect massive amounts of data on US citizens.

The senators accuse officials of making misleading statements and demand that the director of national intelligence James Clapper answer a series of specific questions on the scale of domestic surveillance as well as the legal justification for it.

In their strongly-worded letter to Clapper, the senators said they believed the government may be misinterpreting existing legislation to justify the sweeping collection of telephone and internet data revealed by the Guardian.

"We are concerned that by depending on secret interpretations of the Patriot Act that differed from an intuitive reading of the statute, this program essentially relied for years on a secret body of law," they say.

...

In a press statement, the group of senators added: "The recent public disclosures of secret government surveillance programs have exposed how secret interpretations of the USA Patriot Act have allowed for the bulk collection of massive amounts of data on the communications of ordinary Americans with no connection to wrongdoing."

...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/28/senators-james-clapper-nsa-data-collection


Senators signing the letter:

Ron Wyden (D-Or), Mark Udall (D-Co), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt), Mark Kirk (R-Il), Dick Durbin (D-Il), Tom Udall (D-NM), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Jon Tester (D-Mt), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Dean Heller (R- Nev),Mark Begich (D-Alaska), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt), Patty Murray (D-Wash), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Al Franken (D-Minn), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Chris Coons (D-Del), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn), Max Baucus (D-Mont), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc) and Mike Lee (R-Utah).
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 04:07 PM (128 replies)

Politico: Pols, pundits weigh in on NSA report

This is a photo gallery, but the mix of opinions on this is worthwhile to see, and some DUers might not be able to go to a page that has pics.

http://www.politico.com/gallery/2013/06/pols-pundits-weigh-in-on-nsa-report/001082-015252.html


“In digital era, privacy must be a priority. Is it just me, or is secret blanket surveillance obscenely outrageous?” Al Gore tweeted.

“This is yet another example of government overreach that forces the question, ‘What sort of state are we living in?’ There is clearly a glaring difference between what the government is doing and what the American people think they are doing,” Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) said in a statement.

“I’m glad the NSA is trying to find out what the terrorists are up to overseas and in our country,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on the Fox News show, “Fox & Friends.”

“As far as I know, this is the exact three-month renewal of what has been in place for the past seven years. … This renewal is carried out by the under the business records section of the Patriot Act. Therefore, it is lawful. It has been briefed to Congress,” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said.

“Why they would need that much data puzzles me. It just seems strange that they would collect all of that only to, I’m sure, drill down on certain aspects later on. That was a surprise and raises some questions that I think we ought to answer,” said Sen. Jeff Flake (R- Ariz.) to MSNBC’s Chris Jansing.

“This type of secret bulk data collection is an outrageous breach of Americans’ privacy. I have had significant concerns about the intelligence community over-collecting information about Americans’ telephone calls, emails and other records,” said Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) in a statement.

“I’ve been a supporter of FISA and the FISA court process, but it does seem to me that on all fronts, the Obama administration is more expansive and aggressive — from drones to phone records — than the Bush administration,” Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said.

“This is nothing new. This has been going on for seven years … every member of the United States Senate has been advised of this. To my knowledge, there has not been any citizen who has registered a complaint. It has proved meritorious because we have collected significant information on bad guys, but only on bad guys, over the years,” Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) said.

“I think if what you’re trying to do is avoid the kind of terrorism that occurred in Boston or the kind of terrorism that almost occurred in Times Square a couple years ago, I am for whatever it takes as long as it’s restricted to the National Security Agency and doesn’t get involved in looking for criminal behavior or other kind of things,” Newt Gingrich, speaking to CNN’s Piers Morgan.

“When is it legitimate to gather this private information on citizens and collect, extort, and use it? That is going to be a conundrum for lawyers and policymakers going forward because technology is driving this right now. Our ability to gather so much information on individuals and store it on something as big as a microchip really changes the way we do this. That moral point, that ethical question is going to be permeating throughout this discussion going forward,” said former RNC Chairman Michael Steele to MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts.

“Within the last few years, this program was used to stop a terrorist attack in the United States. We know that. It’s important. It fills in a little seam that we have, and it’s used to make sure that there’s not an international nexus to any terrorism event that they may believe is ongoing in the United States,” Rep. Mike Roger (R-Mich) said.

“Drone strikes. Wiretaps. Gitmo. Renditions. Military commissions. Obama is carrying out Bush’s 4th term, yet he attacked Bush for violating the Constitution,” Ari Fleischer, George W. Bush’s press secretary, said.

“The United States should not be accumulating phone records on tens of millions of innocent Americans. That is not what democracy is about. That is not what freedom is about,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) said.

“Never thought I would agree with Al Gore but in the case of the #NSA he’s right. The secret blanket surveillance is obscenely outrageous,” Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) tweeted.

“Civil liberties are incredibly important in this country and to have a FISA court basically give a perpetual court order of telephone records …I think it goes against what this country is founded on.” Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) said on MSNBC.

“The American people have a right to know whether their government thinks that the sweeping, dragnet surveillance that has been alleged in this story is allowed under the law and whether it is actually being conducted. Furthermore, they have a right to know whether the program that has been described is actually of value in preventing attacks. Based on several years of oversight, I believe that its value and effectiveness remain unclear,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said.

“The National Security Agency’s seizure and surveillance of virtually all of Verizon’s phone customers is an astounding assault on the Constitution. After revelations that the Internal Revenue Service targeted political dissidents and the Department of Justice seized reporters’ phone records, it would appear that this Administration has now sunk to a new low,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said.

“I do not believe the released FISA order is consistent with the requirement of the Patriot Act. How could the phone records of so many innocent Americans be relevant to an authorized investigation as required by the Act?” Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis) said in a letter.

“We believe this type of program is far too broad and is inconsistent with our nation’s founding principles. We cannot defeat terrorism by compromising our commitment to our civil rights and liberties,” Prominent Democrats including Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.), on the House Judiciary committee said in a joint statement.

“Everyone should just calm down and understand this isn’t anything that is brand new. It’s been going on for some seven years. And we’ve tried often to try to make it better, and we’ll continue to do that,” Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) told reporters.
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 02:04 PM (0 replies)

Russ Tice says the 1% may be using NSA to blackmail politicians on the 99%'s side.

Also anyone who has a say over the NSA itself, or the interests of the 1%

Most of the political figures who matter have been wiretapped and profiled by NSA. Not only them, but their staff; not only in D.C., but in their home districts. He didn't say specifically, but it follows that their families wouldn't be excluded from that.

He said this practice is systemic, and the ones he knows about personally are naturally only the tip of the iceberg. He elaborated on those he knows of from his own direct knowledge, to give us an idea of the kinds of people NSA is focusing on. Below is the list of those that he happened to mention in this interview. (He did say there were more he could name, but the interview went on to other things.) First he spoke in general of job categories, then he named some names, including Barack Obama in 2004. Yes, he knows that, he held the wiretap in his own hand and saw it with his own eyes:

journalists and news agencies
high-ranking military officers

members of Congress - Senate and House, both parties, especially those on the Intelligence Committees, Armed Services Committees, and Judiciary Committees

congressional staff
judges, 1 on the Supreme Court; 2 former FISA court judges
State Department officials
Executive Branch, including in the White House
anti-war groups
civil rights groups
US international corporations
Banks and financial firms
NGO's like the Red Cross


He names some by name

Barack Obama in 2004
Hillary Clinton
Sen. Diane Feinstein
Sen. Orrin Hatch
Sen. Patrick Leahy
Sen. Carl Levin
Rep. James Saxton
Rep. Peter Hoekstra
Rep. Tom Davis
Sen. Henry Waxman
Sen. Jay Rockefeller
Sen. John McCain
Sen. Evan Bayh
Gen. Colin Powell
Gen. Eric Shinseki
Gen. David Petraeus

He said that the one Supreme Court judge he saw an order for was Alito, but that his coworkers still inside the NSA say that all 9 have been tapped.

He is very worried about the opportunity NSA has to blackmail political figures, in fact he says that is principally why he became a whistlblower. The capability is certainly there, which is a problem in itself.

Going by what we have seen, of good people such as POTUS changing their positions against the interest of the 99%, this would explain a lot. It is entirely likely that we have not just a situation of money buying people off, but of the Surveillance State blackmailing those who can't be bought.

I think back to the very first news story after PO was elected, and it was the one about Jesse Jackson Jr. being arrested through a wiretap. I think it's possible that could have been meant to be a message to PO. I don't know that it's a fact (of course) but it is possible, that such blackmailing is going on. And the fact that it's possible, is a problem. The potential for blackmail has always been recognized as a security risk. Now we have that to the nth degree within our own government.

Below is Tice's interview from June 19th a few weeks ago. I'd post it from a different source but Tice said that other outlets have been afraid to have him on, and have even backed out of his recent scheduled appearances at the last minute. I started the video at 45 minutes in, where he starts talking about what's in this post and it continues to the end of the tape. But the whole thing is worth listening to. This man knows, and what he's saying is no joke.

?t=45m45s

Edit: apparently the link won't start where I wanted it to, so just go to 45:50 to find where he begins talking about this subject.
Posted by Waiting For Everyman | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 09:08 AM (2 replies)
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