NSA: Obama’s Charlie McCarthy?

    The lid has been blown off of the Obama administration’s misuse of the National Security Agency’s capabilities. This latest scandal has damaged our national security and the intelligence agency’s credibility to the extent that it may take years to recover. The whistleblower, Edward Snowden, who was first a CIA employee, then a contractor with Booz Allen, Hamilton at NSA has come forward saying he was: | Read More »

    NSA Appropriate and Necessary Actions

    I cannot believe how many people have taken the position that the actions of the NSA, tracking phone calls, e-mails and web searches are appropriate and necessary measures for national security.  In a Breitbart article today it was pointed out that there are so many reasons why this is a bad idea. Forget they claim that attacks were thwarted based on these over-reaching intrusive programs. | Read More »

    Julian Assange Had A Point

    By now, we’ve all gone through the mourning period requisite to accept that any privacy we expected to have as American Citizens is dead. The War on Terror killed it. In a sense, Osama Bin Laden won. He’s spiking the football down in hell as we speak. If he hated us for our freedoms, he should lighten up a bit and chill. Those freedoms are increasingly becoming non-existent – a casualty of war so to speak.

    The recent revelations of Edward Snowden, even if partially inflated by bravado and imagination, suggest that everything I’ve written above is the sad truth about Post-modern America. We are increasingly becoming The Orwell State.

    And the people wielding all the special powers we enacted to fight The War on Terror still wield them without any let-up. They wield them without let-up right after they announced the war was coming to an end. So if the GWOT is over and done with, who does the administration consider the enemy? Or worse yet, does the administration even feel the need for an enemy? Do they consider the police state a naturally justifiable equilibrium? All of these questions above are fine and dandy for batting around the dorm hall amidst a cloud of epistemological bong smoke. If you don’t like the answers to any of the questions I’ve posited then here’s the only question that matters: what do you intend to do about it? Glen Greenwald offers one response below.

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    Francis Responds to Snowden’s NSA Revelations

    On today’s edition of Coffee and Markets, Brad Jackson and Ben Domenech are joined by Francis Cianfrocca to discuss Edward Snowden’s leaks about NSA intelligence gathering, how a high school dropout got his level of access and if the public outcry endangers this controversial spying program.

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    The Police State of Obamaville

    When people think of a police state, they usually think of heavily armed, uniformed police kicking in doors and dragging out family members in the dark of the night. A police state doesn’t require police kicking down your door… at least not in the beginning, particularly when one is evolving from some other form of government, say for instance a constitutional republic. I’m not sure | Read More »

    Trust and Taps

    Trust and Taps

    It is long held that the government can look at the outside of an envelope as it passes through the postal system. The government can see who is sending a letter, to whom it is being sent, and from which postal location the letter was mailed. The government, in the twenty-first century, is trying to come to terms with a society that transmits information differently | Read More »

    Has the Obama administration EARNED our trust on phone metadata harvesting?

    Let us imagine a world where the following occurred*: 2008 – 2013: Barack Obama accepts public financing for the election, promptly closes Gitmo, and rigorously avoids raising taxes of any kind on the middle class. Just to not-really-randomly pick three of his campaign promises. 2009: Barack Obama secures the formal appointment of Inspector Generals at Defense, Homeland Security, Interior, Labor, State, and the Agency for | Read More »

    Only privacy rights Obama respects prevent births, not unreasonable searches

    If President Obama is only continuing domestic spying programs initiated under Presidents Clinton (Echelon) and Bush (Patriot Act), then why were Major Hasan (Fort Hood) the Tsarnaev brothers (Boston Marathon) left to their known Islamist pro-death terror devices, while the substance of the prayers of conservative tea party pro-life patriot Republicans were searched before they could help prevent his re-election or avoid tax audits? Two | Read More »

    I Am A Prophetess–I guess.

    In October, 2007 I published this toon on my blog at RightNation http://www.rightnation.us/forums/index.php?app=blog&blogid=44&showentry=2105 Every time I think I’ve drawn something SO bizarrely out there that it can NEVER come true I amaze myself with my prophetic ability.

    Tech at Night: A few quick points on FISA, NSA, and PRISM.

    Tech at Night

    It’s the hot topic, so I’m going to start off with a few points on FISA and PRISM.

    Point one: Foreign agents can control US phone numbers, particularly in this age of constant cybersecurity threats.

    Point two: Searching a third party service provider isn’t the same as searching your home.

    Point three: ECHELON is an old program, one where the UK’s intel team spies on us, and the NSA spites on them. NSA-avoidance advice that tells you to favor non-US firms is laughably stupid.

    Point four: Data mining of metadata for mathematical analysis of networks, using known terrorists and allies as anchors, isn’t the same as spying on anyone.

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    The New York times sacrifices its credibility on the Obama altar

    Within hours of the disclosure that the federal authorities routinely collect data on phone calls Americans make, regardless of whether they have any bearing on a counterterrorism investigation, the Obama administration issued the same platitude it has offered every time President Obama has been caught overreaching in the use of his powers: Terrorists are a real menace and you should just trust us to deal with them because we have internal mechanisms (that we are not going to tell you about) to make sure we do not violate your rights.

    Those reassurances have never been persuasive — whether on secret warrants to scoop up a news agency’s phone records or secret orders to kill an American suspected of terrorism — especially coming from a president who once promised transparency and accountability. The administration has now lost all credibility.

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    Adrift on the sea of power

    Government power is exercised only in the absence of liberty.  If you are legally compelled to do something, you are not free to refuse.  The government does spend a good deal of time making “suggestions” and offering optional “benefits” these days, but all of this activity is funded by the compulsory seizure of wealth. Power takes many forms.  Money is power.  Everything the government does | Read More »

    The NSA analyzes our phone records for national security, so why didn’t the gnomes catch the Tsarnaevs?

    The President has now come out and defended the NSA phone records and internet server data collection as necessary for national security. “Nobody is listening to your telephone calls,” Obama said. “That’s not what this program is about. As was indicated, what the intelligence community is doing is looking at the numbers and durations of calls. They’re not looking at names and they’re not looking | Read More »

    Welcome To The American Orwell State

    If we don’t end the emerging American Orwell State, Francis Fukayama and the Dead Kennedys both could be tragically correct. History may well end, and it could end with Bedtime For Democracy. What Fukayama got right is that Western governments would emerge with hegemony over the rest of the world due to their advantages in wealth, culture and technology. What he got wrong was that they would use these advantages to stifle their own citizenry through the formation of what George Orwell described as Oligarchical Collectivism.

    To properly assure the uncontested hegemony of an Inner Party Elite, all information must be controlled and censored. How else can both Google and the noble, all-knowing state assure themselves that we’ll do no evil? Well, according to The Washington Post (and other officially official sources within the Ministry of Truth), we no longer need to worry about that.

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    Mark Kirk backhands Eric Holder over the executive branch’s spying on Congress.

    Short version: Eric Holder got to be testifying before the Senate on a day where the big news was that the NSA was having Verizon pull its phone logs and hand them over to the federal government. Mark Kirk had an opportunity to ask questions. Hi-jinks, as they say, ensued. For those of you who don’t have video, here’s a rough translation/summary of what Holder | Read More »