"Sheriff, do the letters F O mean anything to you?"
I don't know about you, but whenever someone says there needs to be less investigation of government, I want more.
The US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has introduced a bill to reauthorize Section 215 of the Patriot Act to allow mass surveillance of innocent American citizens until December 31, 2020. Section 215 is due to expire on June 1, and there are going to be various attempts to either reform or abandon the provision …
Oh, look, it's Iain Thomson again.
He forgot to mention this "sneaky bid" (how is it sneaky if everyone knows about it?) has bipartisan support and that Obama has already said he enthusiastically supports Section 215.
"On January 17, 2014, President Obama gave a speech at the Department of Justice on his Administration’s review of certain intelligence activities. During this speech, he ordered a transition that would end the Section 215 bulk telephony metadata program as it previously existed and establish a new mechanism to preserve the capabilities we need without the government holding this bulk metadata. The President made clear that he was ordering this transition to give the public greater confidence that their privacy is appropriately protected, while maintaining the tools our intelligence and law enforcement agencies need to keep us safe. This fact sheet describes the steps the Administration has taken to implement this transition, details the President’s proposal for a new program to replace the Section 215 program, and outlines the steps the Administration will be taking in the near future to realize the President’s vision."
"Earlier this year in a speech at the Department of Justice, I announced a transition that would end the Section 215 bulk telephony metadata program as it previously existed and that we would establish a mechanism to preserve the capabilities we need without the government holding this bulk metadata. I did so to give the public greater confidence that their privacy is appropriately protected, while maintaining the tools our intelligence and law enforcement agencies need to keep us safe.
"In that January 17 speech, I ordered that a transition away from the prior program would proceed in two steps. In addition to directing immediate changes to the program, I also directed the Intelligence Community and the Attorney General to use this transition period to develop options for a new approach to match the capabilities and fill gaps that the Section 215 program was designed to address without the government holding this metadata. I instructed them to report back to me with options for alternative approaches before the program comes up for reauthorization on March 28th. As part of this process, we consulted with the Congress, the private sector, and privacy and civil liberties groups, and developed a number of alternative approaches.
"Having carefully considered the available options, I have decided that the best path forward is that the government should not collect or hold this data in bulk."
"On January 17, 2014, President Obama gave a speech at the Department of Justice on his Administration’s review of certain intelligence activities. During this speech, he ordered a transition that would end the Section 215 bulk telephony metadata program...
Serves you right for listening to what a politician says, you need to pay attention what what he DOES. Obama has already ratified Section 215 in previous votes. Other than talking points he's taken no direct action to prevent the program.
See, this is what politicians do, they say what's popular to pacify the masses while doing nothing meaningful to prevent the action they pretend to oppose.
I hope I'm wrong, but I suspect if Section 215 finds it's way to Obama's desk, he will quietly sign it while mumbling something about how he has no choice.
This isn't a Democrat or Republican thing, it's a politician thing. The people that are the most hurt are the poor dumb partisan suckers that believe what their cult political leaders say!
"The law gives legal cover to the NSA for its massive database of US cellphone records, among other things."
This was actually one of the "shell games" NSA supporters played -- successfully against the television reporters, unsuccessfully against the online media. After initially leaning on the NSA over the (always has been and still is) illegal mass surveillance program, the TV media's attention was diverted to the (legal due to Patriot Act) call record program (which has phone # and call length only). The TV media was perfectly played, instead of leaning on the NSA to reform the illegal mass surveillance program that the public actually cares about, they "successfully" leaned on the NSA to reform the call records program.
As for these senators -- I would ask Anonymous or someone to dox them. These types of people are ALWAYS hypocrites... they will invariably have no problem saying that nobody should have a right to privacy, until THEIR OWN private information is leaked. THEN all of a sudden, what do you know, privacy is a big deal!
"Hmm... a quick check via search engine reveals that the Vegas Bookmakers are not giving odds on the reauthorization."
Implying a sure thing are they? Even if it doesn't pass, all the little nooks and cranny's that make the bill invasive will bleed over to other bills 1 by 1, quickly or slowly. One of those methods similar to "Look I quit! Now look elsewhere!"
Anymore I look to the skies wondering what the hell is taking those alien invaders so long.
If that's the case bet on the western red states. What they lack in people, resources, education, etc they make up for with nuclear weapons. Have to store them somewhere and you aren't going to put them anywhere important so all you need to do is look at a cell phone coverage map and those areas with no coverage yeah that's where they often are.
And here is the first wave,
5 years later,
July 4th, 2020. Associated Press
In a dawn offensive this morning, National Reserve and Federal troops successfully mopped up the last vestiges of the rogue, underground branch of the Silicon Valley Entrepreneur Group known as Cryptorg. High explosives were detonated in front of their secret data center in Yosemite National Park. Tear gas was used to force the last members of the resistance into the open. Zuckerberg, Page, Cook and Wales have all been captured alive and will face charges for high treason before a military tribunal in Sacremento.
Commander-in-Chief James Heartbleed proclaimed the raid was "a victory for freedom and right thinking Americans everywhere". He further stated that "Innocent American citizens can now sleep safely tonight, secure in the knowledge that the last rogue manufacturers of dangerous and illegal encryption technology have finally been isolated and arrested."
In other news, Edward Snowden, the rogue ex-NSA system administrator (still exiled in Moscow) called this event "a global tragedy", and the inevitable outcome of "poorly thought-out electoral choices made by the American people in the first two decades of the 21st Century".
When the DNC apologists ("I'm not a Democrat but...") claimed they'd accept a GOP that acted more like the Democrat Party, well, here ya go.
Doing what Pelosi (D, CA) did when she was Senate Majority Leader.
Supporting the NSA is the biggest bipartisan effort since the creation of taxation.
Yay for compromise and reaching across the aisle! it means no one stands against anything and the b@stards cooperate to screw us over.
This is why "gridlock" in DC is a good thing.
>Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) are both running for president in 2016, and both opposed the reauthorization of the Patriot Act
Perhaps for the wrong reasons but I will take any allies I can get in this fight. It still will probably be lost because terrorists are a huge threat to the billionaires when the public gets scared and quits buying all the shit they don't need. Good thing the politicians in 2001/2002 reminded us all to show our patriotism by buying what their buddies were selling.
"Then when it's over, what do you do with your former ally?"
Well.... there was this guy Bin Laden whose "bunch of plucky rebels" even featured as the Good Guys in Rambo III ( which is in and of itself a perfect example of US propaganda..) and ummmm....
Well you get the picture...
>what do you do with your former ally?
Certainly not vote for them (shudder at thought of living in either state but especially Rand's special shit hole). Rand will continue to push for America to take up the Somali and Mad Max model of governance as well as talking his followers into giving him money as he constantly runs or pushes for something so he can give his family jobs (ie the business model his Dad perfected). Cruz is a carnival barker that even John McCain is calling crazy who can't seem to make enemies fast enough so he will be a footnote by 2020. As for the Rambo reference you also forgot that time in band camp when Saddam was our buddy and we sold him military hardware on the cheap. Wouldn't be surprised if we sold him the gas he used on the Kurds (doubt it though because less than 10,000 died, our stuff was nastier).
They don't need loopholes. There's no one to catch them spying, and no one to impose penalties if they were caught.
Intelligence agencies don't give up sources - legal or not, ethical or not - unless and until they decide their resources are better spent elsewhere. With the possible rare exceptions of the Henry Stimsons of the world, those nominally in charge of those agencies are perfectly happy with that; and even if they weren't, what would they do to stop their underlings? If Rand Paul, or you or I, were in charge of the NSA, he couldn't police everything every employee does.
COINTELPRO didn't need any S. 215. (Or the secret FISA court - which of course was ostensibly created to curb abusive domestic spying, not serve as a rubber-stamping Star Chamber. But then so was the actual Star Chamber. Huh!)
It's good to revoke abominations like the PATRIOT Act, so that the law is at least an image of a civil society we can aspire to, and gross affronts to civil liberties aren't enshrined in it. And legal obstacles to spying at least provide some impediment to wholesale, casual abuse. But "ending" it? Do what you will with the barn door, that horse ain't never coming back.
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