Category Archives: domestic terrorism

NSA: “EVERYONE !!”

Seems the NSA can, without a warrant, snoop on anyone within three degrees of someone that they may have some suspicion about.

…the rather startling news that came out of yesterday’s House Judiciary Committee on the NSA spying programs: NSA Director John Inglis revealed that the FISA Court permits the government to do three jumps from an initial number tied to a phone number reasonably believed to be tied to terrorism (or relevant to Iran, though that search criteria didn’t get mentioned at all in the parts of the hearing I watched).

Three degrees of separation!

Remember, some years ago, every single person in the US could be connected via six degrees — the old Kevin Bacon game. There’s some evidence that that number has become smaller — perhaps as small as 3 (I’ve seen more scientific numbers that say it is 4.5 or thereabouts).

In any case, if the US is using the excuse of terror to get three jumps deep into US person associations, then this program is even more intrusive then they’ve let on.

I imagine that would include everyone in our government, the Israeli government, the Palestinian authority, every head of state, every law enforcement officer, everyone who has ever been abroad, everyone who has ever interviewed a foreign person, everyone who knows anyone who knows anyone in:

Greenpeace,

the Quakers,

any demonstration of any kind,

anyone who has written a letter to an editor,

any person of color,

anyone who signed a petition, and

so on.

It’s basically EVERYONE. and what will they do with it? Wait til Karl Rove or one of the Cheneys gets back in power and you’ll see in short order. Or just some NSA guy who’s curious about who his ex girlfriend in dating. Or some NSA girl with a grudge against oh, well, ANYONE!

We have a constitution; that used to mean something.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

When basically the entire population is legally suspect, doesn’t that mean we’re doing something wrong?

 

video: Gary Oldman, in “The Professional.”

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Mike McConnell: caught again trying to deceive Congress

Digby

….DNI Michael McConnell? I understand that spooks, by nature and profession, are liars, but this fellow is not supposed to be political, and we are ostensibly in a democracy in which government employees — all government employees — work for the people. They are not allowed to lie to the people’s representatives, even if they think it’s for our own good.

McConnell’s position is supposed to be non-partisan and apolitical. And yet he is known to have consciously misled the congress, threatened them with “being responsible for American deaths” if they don’t do what he says and, it’s quite clear, strategized the FISA bill abortion last August with the White house, which is a big no-no. It’s a bad idea to trust anyone with the kind of power this man wields without strenuous oversight. It’s political malpractice to trust a man this manipulative and dishonest. He is a problem.

Here’s the latest example of his blatant (and disturbingly sloppy, which explains why our intelligence agencies can’t find water if they fall out of a boat) misleading of the congress:

Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell told Congress last week that a May wiretap that targeted Iraqi insurgents was delayed for 12 hours by attempts to comply with onerous surveillance laws, which slowed an effort to locate three U.S. soldiers who had been captured south of Baghdad.

But new details released this week portray a more complicated picture of the delay, which actually lasted about 9 1/2 hours and was caused primarily by legal wrangling between the Justice Department and intelligence officials over whether authorities had probable cause to begin the surveillance.


This is why all this “trust us, we’re keeping the boogeyman rom killing you in your bed” is so dangerous. Michael McConnell has repeatedly lied to congress. You can’t trust liars. If they needed this power for legitimate reasons they would have no reason to make up scenarios to justify it. They can always go behind closed doors and share classified information with the people’s representatives who are authorized to receive it. Indeed, we expect them to o it. The only conclusion you can come to is that they are using this power for nefarious reasons.

Michael McConnell has given interviews that call his judgment into question. He is a proven liar. He has shown himself to be a tool of the Bush Administration. What in the world is this man doing in charge of some of the most delicate intelligence functions in the government? He had a reputation for rectitude before took the job. but he either became tainted by the Cheney/Addington paranoid vision or he was highly overrated. Either way, the congress should never take his word for anything. There’s something very wrong with him.

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Father of dead soldier beaten by pro-war demonstrators

Link

On September 15th Gold Star Dad, Carlos Arrendondo was participating in a peaceful protest against the Iraq War in which he carried a mock coffin which displayed a photo of his son, Alex who was killed in action. A group of republican war mongers, seeing the offending photo of a dead American Soldier first ripped the photo from the coffin and refused to return it. When they hadn’t expressed their hate glands sufficiently, they thought it would be fun to beat the living shit out of this 47 year old, grieving father. Crooks and Liars has the photo.

A bystander named Ramesh witnessed the whole encounter and also retrieved the picture of Alex for Carlos. He was quite distressed at how he watched the men follow Carlos as he pulled the memorial, purposefully yelling epiphets and eventually taking Alex’s photograph. Soon, an ambulance showed up as well as many concerned activists. The paramedics provided first aid to Carlos but he did not seek further medical attention. Carlos sustained bloody cuts on his shins. He also reported bruises all over his torso and head where he was kicked.

If you don’t see the fascism, people, you deserve what lies ahead.

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Filed under Bill Kristol: is he smarter than you?, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, domestic terrorism, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Iraq, Politics

OJ free on bail, Homeland Security increases threat level to red

It is not known whether duct tape will provide any protection.

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OJ Simpson makes comeback; more successful than Britney Spears UPDATE

Many said OJ was too old to make it in a life of crime; at age 60, he had been retired from that game for many years, his last caper being the double “if I did it” in Brentwood, of which he was acquitted, but later held responsible.

Britney, au contraire, is still a young woman at what, 27? sure, she had a couple kids, an ex husband or two, but was definitely in pretty good shape just a couple of years ago.

But you guessed it. Britney gave it a good try, but bombed; she looked lost, confused, chubby, and unrehearsed. OJ, on the other hand, made good on a break-in/room invasion/armed robbery. I mean, he didn’t kill anybody, but that’s probably because the victims didn’t include any women.

A conviction on the most serious charge, robbery with use of a deadly weapon, could bring a sentence of three to 35 years for each count, he said.
“He is facing a lot of time,” Roger said.

So congrats to OJ; we hope to see him running through airports in the near future. Of course, you can get shot for that nowadays.

UPDATE: OJ has submitted a plea bargain proposal which would include him looking for Steve Fossett on Florida golf courses.

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New FEMA plan a recipe for more disasters, say states.

Washington Post:

A decision by the Bush administration to rewrite in secret the nation’s emergency response blueprint has angered state and local emergency officials, who worry that Washington is repeating a series of mistakes that contributed to its bungled response to Hurricane Katrina nearly two years ago.

State and local officials in charge of responding to disasters say that their input in shaping the National Response Plan was ignored in recent months by senior White House and Department of Homeland Security officials, despite calls by congressional investigators for a shared overhaul of disaster planning in the United States.

“In my 19 years in emergency management, I have never experienced a more polarized environment between state and federal government,” said Albert Ashwood, Oklahoma‘s emergency management chief and president of a national association of state emergency managers.

The national plan is supposed to guide how federal, state and local governments, along with private and nonprofit groups, work together during emergencies. Critics contend that a unilateral approach by Washington produced an ill-advised response plan at the end of 2004 — an unwieldy, 427-page document that emphasized stopping terrorism at the expense of safeguarding against natural disasters.

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al Qaeda didn’t follow the Russians home from Afghanistan

just sayin….

Osama bin Laden got his start helping to boot the Ruskies out of Afghanistan back in the late 90’s. Last time I checked, he and al Qaeda didn’t follow the Russians home. And Russia was a lot closer to Afghanistan than we are to Iraq.

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