Category Archives: US Attorneys

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.”

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Barack Obama, Bush blunders worldwide, Congress, Countdown to attack on Iran, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, domestic terrorism, FEMA/Homeland Security, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, honest people, immigration, Iran, Iraq, James Comey, jerk, Karl Rove:Bush's brain or Bush's as'hole?, Middle East, Pakistan, perpetual war: fascism in disguise, Politics, public corruption, Racism, Republican politicians: are any of them normal, Ron Paul: couldn't be worse than Rudy., Rudy Giuliani: NYC doesn't even like him, Smokey award finalist, Supreme Court, Torture: you're next, Uncategorized, US Attorneys, video, Wordpress Political Blogs

As sick as it gets: Cheney gets standing ovation for torture, at CPAC

The Conservative Political Action Conference; gathering place for the near-Fascist right; Dick Cheney is of course their leader.

From Sadly, No!, a description of these maniacs. I’m sorry, but I don’t recognize conservatism in this stuff. It’s just sickness.

Weirdly enough – or maybe not so much – his defense of torture gets a standing ovation, but his praising of our fighting men in uniform does not.

Leave a comment

Filed under Afghanistan, Alberto Gonzales:boob or simpleton-you decide, bigotry and prejudice, Bush blunders worldwide, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, FEMA/Homeland Security, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Iran, Iraq, John McCain for president of Del Boca Vista, Mitt Romney: double guantanamo, people with plastic hair, perpetual war: fascism in disguise, Politics, public corruption, Racism, religion, Republican politicians: are any of them normal, Rudy Giuliani: NYC doesn't even like him, science: not a very Republican thing to do, Torture: you're next, US Attorneys, White House emails, Wordpress Political Blogs

Wisconsin legislature votes to pay unjustly imprisoned state employee

Link

Continued fallout from the U.S. attorneys scandal. From The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:

The state Senate on Thursday unanimously approved the payment of legal fees for Georgia Thompson, a state employee whose conviction for mishandling a contract was overturned by a federal appeals court….Senators voted 32-0 to pay $228,793 for Thompson’s legal fees; the bill now goes to the Assembly, where it is expected to pass. There was no debate on the bill, but Sen. Judy Robson (D-Beloit) said it was the “least we can do” for Thompson, who served time in a federal prison before the appeals judges ordered her released.

Of course, the appeals court’s decision to immediately overturn the case was remarkable in itself. But here you have a state legislature working to redress the wrongs of a federal prosecutor. Has this ever happened before? It strikes me as a rather unique situation.

Leave a comment

Filed under Alberto Gonzales:boob or simpleton-you decide, election fraud, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Politics, public corruption, Republican politicians: are any of them normal, US Attorneys, White House emails, Wordpress Political Blogs

US attorney scandal not going away; federal probe deepens

It is difficult to believe this will result in any indictments, given the suppressive nature of the Bush administration. But it’s a sign that there is still some life in the Justice Department.

link

….recent behind-the-scenes activity in several investigations suggests that the issue that roiled Congress in 2007 could re-emerge in the heat of the election year. Two inquiries by the House and Senate ethics committees are examining whether several congressional Republicans, including one running for the Senate this year, improperly interfered with investigations.

As potent as the congressional probes might be, they appear to be far narrower than a sprawling inquiry launched by the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) and the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR).

Investigators from these offices have been questioning whether senior officials lied to Congress, violated the criminal provisions in the Hatch Act, tampered with witnesses preparing to testify to Congress, obstructed justice, took improper political considerations into account during the hiring and firing of U.S. attorneys and created widespread problems in the department’s Civil Rights Division, according to several people familiar with the investigation.

Leave a comment

Filed under Alberto Gonzales:boob or simpleton-you decide, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Karl Rove:Bush's brain or Bush's as'hole?, Politics, public corruption, Republican politicians: are any of them normal, US Attorneys, White House emails, Wordpress Political Blogs

Why is Waxman having baseball hearings?

Doesn’t strike me as the Oversight Committee’s highest priority. Strikes me as a Republican-like “oh, look over there….” kind of cover for not doing the real work…am I wrong?

Like, how about a little more attention to this?

2 Comments

Filed under baseball, economics, Harry Reid:part of the problem, Karl Rove:Bush's brain or Bush's as'hole?, perpetual war: fascism in disguise, Politics, public corruption, Steny Hoyer: isn't he really a Republican?, Torture: you're next, US Attorneys, voter intimidation, White House emails, Wordpress Political Blogs

Bush tries to intimidate military lawyers

 Another day, another episode of unconscionable political degradation of the judicial/legal system of the United States of America.

Link

The Bush administration is pushing to take control of the promotions of military lawyers, escalating a conflict over the independence of uniformed attorneys who have repeatedly raised objections to the White House’s policies toward prisoners in the war on terrorism.

Leave a comment

Filed under Alberto Gonzales:boob or simpleton-you decide, Bush blunders worldwide, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Mitt Romney: double guantanamo, Politics, Racism, Republican politicians: are any of them normal, Rudy Giuliani: NYC doesn't even like him, Smokey award finalist, Torture: you're next, US Attorneys, Wordpress Political Blogs

Congress…an actual part of our government?

TPM: 

No, he hasn’t forgotten. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) took a step today towards contempt proceedings against Karl Rove, two of his former aides, and White House chief of staff Josh Bolten for not complying with subpoenas related to the U.S. attorney firings.

There hasn’t been much movement since this summer, when Leahy issued the subpoenas. The administration claimed executive privilege for all documents and testimony sought, and said that Rove didn’t need to even show up for a hearing. Rove’s aides Sara Taylor and Scott Jennings appeared, but refused to discuss the firings. A subpoena for documents was sent to Bolten, and the White House refused.

Today, Leahy ruled that the claims of executive privilege and immunity were not legally valid, a necessary step toward issuing contempt citations in the committee. He didn’t say when he might do that.

The timing for this might have something to do with what’s going on in the House, where leaders have said they plan to schedule a floor vote to find former White House counsel Harriet Miers and Bolten in contempt for ignoring subpoenas there. That vote has been repeatedly delayed and is currently expected to take place next month.

1 Comment

Filed under Alberto Gonzales:boob or simpleton-you decide, Congress, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, James Comey, Karl Rove:Bush's brain or Bush's as'hole?, Politics, public corruption, Republican politicians: are any of them normal, US Attorneys