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Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 10,480
Gender: Do not display
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 10,480
Posted by Oilwellian | Sun Aug 17, 2014, 10:37 PM (0 replies)
The conflict between Israel and Palestine has recently been escalated, but many supporters of both sides can agree that any innocent civilian lives lost during the conflict are a tragedy. Several Palestinians have found their own way to grieve for the dead and to cope their strong emotions about the conflict – by drawing images that they see in the smoke rising from the sites of Israeli rocket strikes.
The images that they see in these violent clouds of smoke are shaped by their experience in Palestine – they are full of imagery usually associated with rebellion, resistance and grief. We can only hope that the current violent confrontation between Israel and Palestine comes to an end as soon as possible, for the good of innocent civilians on both sides.
Posted by Oilwellian | Mon Jul 28, 2014, 11:14 AM (6 replies)
The 28 House members who lobbied the Federal Communications Commission to drop net neutrality this week have received more than twice the amount in campaign contributions from the broadband sector than the average for all House members.
These lawmakers, including the top House leadership, warned the FCC that regulating broadband like a public utility "harms" providers, would be "fatal to the Internet," and could "limit economic freedom."
According to research provided Friday by Maplight, the 28 House members received, on average, $26,832 from the "cable & satellite TV production & distribution" sector over a two-year period ending in December. According to the data, that's 2.3 times more than the House average of $11,651.
What's more, one of the lawmakers who told the FCC that he had "grave concern" (PDF) about the proposed regulation took more money from that sector than any other member of the House. Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR) was the top sector recipient, netting more than $109,000 over the two-year period, the Maplight data shows.
List of Names Here
Posted by Oilwellian | Tue Jun 17, 2014, 09:11 PM (4 replies)
His anonymous telephone voice claimed that the Sandy Hook Massacre was a hoax. This cruel taunt, made to two families of its littlest victims, seven-year-olds Grace McDonnell and Chase Kowalski, came from Andrew David Truelove, 28, Virginia. He was arrested this morning in Herndon, Va. with help help of Stonington Police.
The calls came after Truelove stole the sign honoring Grace from the memorial park in Mystic, Conn. and the sign honoring Chase from this memorial park in Mantoloking, N.J.
Truelove turned himself in on an unrelated incident on May 26th for a probation violation. While in jail he has been charged for his recent actions, possession of stolen property, with more serious charges to follow. He is held at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center. Charges in Connecticut and New Jersey are pending said the Virginia police.
Posted by Oilwellian | Wed Jun 4, 2014, 09:42 AM (21 replies)
In the past several months, we have been provided with instructive lessons on the nature of state power and the forces that drive state policy. And on a closely related matter: the subtle, differentiated concept of transparency.
The source of the instruction, of course, is the trove of documents about the National Security Agency surveillance system released by the courageous fighter for freedom Edward J. Snowden, expertly summarized and analyzed by his collaborator Glenn Greenwald in his new book, "No Place to Hide."
The documents unveil a remarkable project to expose to state scrutiny vital information about every person who falls within the grasp of the colossus - in principle, every person linked to the modern electronic society.
Nothing so ambitious was imagined by the dystopian prophets of grim totalitarian worlds ahead.
It is of no slight import that the project is being executed in one of the freest countries in the world, and in radical violation of the U.S. Constitution's Bill of Rights, which protects citizens from "unreasonable searches and seizures," and guarantees the privacy of their "persons, houses, papers and effects."
Posted by Oilwellian | Mon Jun 2, 2014, 05:26 PM (138 replies)
He lied. He knew but said he did not. Now he says he forgot. Bye-bye Christie.
Other interesting new facts emerged, revealed in the report, that are scandalous.
Port Authority told Christie about the closings at Sept. 11 meeting.
The Port Authority official who oversaw the lane closing at the George Washington Bridge said that he had he informed Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey about it at a Sept. 11 memorial while the closings were occurring, according to an internal investigation released on Thursday by lawyers for the governor.
The official, David Wildstein, told Mr. Christie’s press secretary of the Sept 11 conversation at a dinner in December just before his resignation from the Port Authority, according to the report.
The report said that Mr. Christie did not recall any such conversation and finds no evidence that he was involved in the scheme, which snarled traffic for thousands of commuters in Fort Lee, N.J., from Sept. 9 through the morning of Sept. 12.
It is said that he got tears in his eyes when he was told in January. I'm sure he was thinking, "there goes my presidency.
Posted by Oilwellian | Thu Mar 27, 2014, 01:55 PM (32 replies)
Posted by Oilwellian | Fri Mar 21, 2014, 10:47 AM (0 replies)
you'd think that for a company who's main marketing strategy these days is all about how it protects the privacy of your email account wouldn't then break into a user's email account. But that's exactly what Microsoft apparently did in tracking down the guy who leaked Windows 8 to a reporter. Alex Kibkalo, a software architect for Microsoft, sent a French blogger some Windows 8 code and the way to get around its anti-piracy measures. The French blogger posted screenshots and also emailed Microsoft for comment -- and that's when Microsoft apparently decided to throw its privacy promises out the window:
The engineer was caught after the blogger emailed Microsoft to confirm the authenticity of the leaked Windows 8 code. Investigators at the firm then reportedly looked through the blogger’s hotmail account and instant messenger chats to identify the source of the leak, and found an email from Kibaklo.
Of course, Hotmail today has morphed into Outlook.com, and the current ad campaign about it states: "Outlook.com prioritizes your privacy!" and "Your email is nobody else's business." Oh really? I guess Microsoft considers it their business. It's kind of astounding, first, that Microsoft did this, and second that they appear to openly admit that you have no privacy at all in your email if Microsoft suddenly decides it wants to dig through and dig up something.
Posted by Oilwellian | Fri Mar 21, 2014, 12:01 AM (18 replies)
How a Court Secretly Evolved, Extending U.S. Spies’ Reach
By CHARLIE SAVAGE and LAURA POITRAS
MARCH 11, 2014 (March 12th Edition–Pg. A1)
WASHINGTON — Ten months after the Sept. 11 attacks, the nation’s surveillance court delivered a ruling that intelligence officials consider a milestone in the secret history of American spying and privacy law. Called the “Raw Take” order — classified docket No. 02-431 — it weakened restrictions on sharing private information about Americans, according to documents and interviews.
The administration of President George W. Bush, intent on not overlooking clues about Al Qaeda, had sought the July 22, 2002, order. It is one of several still-classified rulings by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court described in documents provided by Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor.
Previously, with narrow exceptions, an intelligence agency was permitted to disseminate information gathered from court-approved wiretaps only after deleting irrelevant private details and masking the names of innocent Americans who came into contact with a terrorism suspect. The Raw Take order significantly changed that system, documents show, allowing counterterrorism analysts at the N.S.A., the F.B.I. and the C.I.A. to share unfiltered personal information.
The leaked documents that refer to the rulings, including one called the “Large Content FISA” order and several more recent expansions of powers on sharing information, add new details to the emerging public understanding of a secret body of law that the court has developed since 2001. The files help explain how the court evolved from its original task — approving wiretap requests — to engaging in complex analysis of the law to justify activities like the bulk collection of data about Americans’ emails and phone calls.
“These latest disclosures are important,” said Steven Aftergood, the director of the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists. “They indicate how the contours of the law secretly changed, and they represent the transformation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court into an interpreter of law and not simply an adjudicator of surveillance applications...”
For all intents and purposes, once readers realize this program, as reported in this story, was expanded to include the National Counterterrorism Center, in 2012, this pretty much blows the lid off of the ongoing government lies propaganda that our government has not been capturing massive quantities of domestic call content of its citizens, all along.
This is "the" story, IMHO. The cat's all but officially out of the proverbial bag.
# # #
Critical background for readers, regarding what we already "knew," from reports in August of last year...
NSA, DEA, IRS Lie About Fact That Americans Are Routinely Spied On By Our Government: Time For A Special Prosecutor
By Jennifer Stisa Granick and Christopher Jon Sprigman
8/14/2013 @ 2:45PM
It seems that every day brings a new revelation about the scope of the NSA’s heretofore secret warrantless mass surveillance programs. And as we learn more, the picture becomes increasingly alarming. Last week we discovered that the NSA shares information with a division of the Drug Enforcement Administration called the Special Operations Division (SOD). The DEA uses the information in drug investigations. But it also gives NSA data out to other agencies – in particular, the Internal Revenue Service, which, as you might imagine, is always looking for information on tax cheats.
The Obama Administration repeatedly has assured us that the NSA does not collect the private information of ordinary Americans. Those statements simply are not true. We now know that the agency regularly intercepts and inspects Americans’ phone calls, emails, and other communications, and it shares this information with other federal agencies that use it to investigate drug trafficking and tax evasion. Worse, DEA and IRS agents are told to lie to judges and defense attorneys about their use of NSA data, and about the very existence of the SOD, and to make up stories about how these investigations started so that no one will know information is coming from the NSA’s top secret surveillance programs.
“How does a foreign intelligence agency which supposedly is looking for terrorists and only targets non-U.S. persons get ahold of information useful in IRS investigations of American tax cheats?” To answer that question, let’s review this week’s revelations…
From the Electronic Frontier Foundation, last August, here’s more on the highly-publicized NSA-DEA connection, pretty much laid bare with the “missing link” provided in today’s NY Times article…
DEA and NSA Team Up to Share Intelligence, Leading to Secret Use of Surveillance in Ordinary Investigations
Electronic Frontier Foundation
August 6, 2013
UPDATE: Add the IRS to the list of federal agencies obtaining information from NSA surveillance. Reuters reports that the IRS got intelligence tips from DEA's secret unit (SOD) and were also told to cover up the source of that information by coming up with their own independent leads to recreate the information obtained from SOD. So that makes two levels of deception: SOD hiding the fact it got intelligence from the NSA and the IRS hiding the fact it got information from SOD. Even worse, there's a suggestion that the Justice Department (DOJ) "closely guards the information provided by SOD with strict oversight," shedding doubt into the effectiveness of DOJ earlier announced efforts to investigate the program.
A startling new Reuters story shows one of the biggest dangers of the surveillance state: the unquenchable thirst for access to the NSA's trove of information by other law enforcement agencies.
As the NSA scoops up phone records and other forms of electronic evidence while investigating national security and terrorism leads, they turn over "tips" to a division of the Drug Enforcement Agency ("DEA") known as the Special Operations Division ("SOD"). FISA surveillance was originally supposed to be used only in certain specific, authorized national security investigations, but information sharing rules implemented after 9/11 allows the NSA to hand over information to traditional domestic law-enforcement agencies, without any connection to terrorism or national security investigations.
But instead of being truthful with criminal defendants, judges, and even prosecutors about where the information came from, DEA agents are reportedly obscuring the source of these tips…
Using the NSA-DEA relationship as just one example of the many interagency information-sharing/surveillance protocols that the public's recently learned are in place in our country, here's a report on the results of a FOIA response provided to MuckRock.com, from just a few weeks ago, regarding how the DEA internally instructs its agents to obfuscate the source of its (NSA) intelligence data...
DEA teaches agents to recreate evidence chains to hide methods
Trainers justify parallel construction on national security and PR grounds: "Americans don't like it"
by Shawn Musgrave
Feb. 3, 2014, 10:30 a.m.
FOI Requests: DEA policies on "parallel construction"
Drug Enforcement Administration training documents released to MuckRock user C.J. Ciaramella show how the agency constructs two chains of evidence to hide surveillance programs from defense teams, prosecutors, and a public wary of domestic intelligence practices.
In training materials, the department even encourages a willful ignorance by field agents to minimize the risk of making intelligence practices public.
The DEA practices mirror a common dilemma among domestic law enforcement agencies: Analysts have access to unprecedented streams of classified information that might prove useful to investigators, but entering classified evidence in court risks disclosing those sensitive surveillance methods to the world, which could either end up halting the program due to public outcry or undermining their usefulness through greater awareness.
An undated slide deck released by the DEA to fleshes out the issue more graphically: When military and intelligence agencies “find Bin Laden's satellite phone and then pin point his location, they don't have to go to a court to get permission to put a missile up his nose." Law enforcement agencies, on the other hand, “must be able to take our information to court and prove to a jury that our bad guy did the bad things we say he did...”
Now, multiply the NSA-DEA relationship by another 12+ Federal agencies (IRS, etc., see above), plus countless local law enforcement organizations and big business security departments, and you'll begin to understand that all of these entities work in unison with the NSA/NCTC at those 78 Fusion Centers, noted in the first paragraph of this post. And, as we're learning from the NY Times, today, they're all--either directly or indirectly--maintaining some level of access to the "unminimized," "Raw Take" wiretap data disclosed in the latest Snowden document leak.
Posted by Oilwellian | Wed Mar 12, 2014, 01:22 AM (88 replies)