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sabrina 1

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Member since: Sun Mar 30, 2008, 05:51 AM
Number of posts: 62,325

Journal Archives

Timothy Geithner Owed Back Taxes, Became Treasury Secretary.

Owing back taxes has suddenly become a major crime in America, it appears. But just a few years ago, it was so inconsequential that it had no impact on a nomination for Treasury Secretary in the President's cabinet.

Here's how it works, it depends on who you are. IF you are a journalist who has published leaks that are embarrassing to the US government, smearing your reputation by digging up information such as you owed back taxes, is supposed to make the stories you published somehow less important.

That's not true of course. Those stories will continue to be important as they should.

We have 'Security Contractors' now who get contracts for this kind of work, which is then spread around by using rags like The Daily Mail and of course, internet operatives.

HB Gary's exposed emails revealed that they, a 'Security Contractor', had proposed a smear campaign against Greenwald a few years ago, then just a blogger, in order to get him to stop writing about Bank of America and The Chamber of Commerce. How many others are doing so, we don't yet know, but let's hope more Whistle Blowers step forward because knowledge is power.

More facts emerge about the leaked smear campaigns

The emails also show that it was Barr [from HB Gary] who suggested pressuring Salon.com journalist Glenn Greenwald, though Palantir, another firm working with HBGary Federal, quickly accepted that suggestion and added it to the PowerPoint presentation that the group was assembling.

Greenberg is referring to this series of emails, first from HBGary’s Barr — addressed to Palantir’s Matthew Steckman and Eli Bingham along with Berico’s Sam Kremin (click image to enlarge):

Yes, they were planning a smear campaign against Glenn Greenwald to 'pressure him' to stop telling the truth about Bank of America and The Chamber of Commerce, for money!

Anonymous was responsible for the HB Gary exposures.

But, what happens if you are a member of the top 1% and you 'forget' to pay taxes on your housekeeper for several years? Will people dismiss you once it's been exposed?

Hardly, you apologize, pay your back taxes, and Congress will nominate you to the position of Treasury Secretary:

Timothy Geithner says he regrets tax mistakes

Geithner, who as Treasury secretary would be in charge of the IRS, paid back taxes for 2003 and 2004 after an IRS audit in 2006. Geithner paid further back taxes and interest after similar problems for his 2001 and 2002 returns were discovered during vetting by the Obama team.

In total, Geithner paid $34,023 in back taxes and $8,679 in interest.

Well, we should all be glad that in the end the taxes got paid.

HB Gary had to forget about their 'contract proposal' to BOA and The Chamber of Commerce because Americans on the whole, are nice people. They don't like to see these kinds of dirty tricks being played to try to silence a journalist. Sometimes they have the opposite effect. See Clinton eg. And BOA and The Chamber weren't happy to have these things see the light of day, the way they deal with people who tell the truth about them.

But just because HB Gary didn't get the Contract to smear Greenwald, doesn't mean someone else didn't get one. Apparently there is money in smearing Greenwald. For being a real journalist. It looks like someone else did get that contract.

Is this the kind of country we want? Because if it is, then once it is exposed, as it has been, it won't be just one side doing it. I personally think it is despicable and will not be distracted from the main issue which they are attempting to cover up.

Watch out Journalists, if you are even thinking of publishing the facts. Watch what is happening to journalists who do and then decide if your country is worth the risk.

Give them hell Glenn. You are one hell of a reporter and the more they do this the more we know you are telling the truth!

Conyers, Nadler, and Scott: NSA-Phone Tracking is Overbroad; Call for Immediate Hearings

Apparently there is some effort to discredit even Jerry Nadler now, in favor of Mueller. From what I have read, the only argument appears to the source from which the story came.

Jerry Nadler is one of the foremost experts on Constitutional issues in Congress and has always stood up for the rights of the people granted in the Constitution.

The claim that he 'might have misunderstood' the bumbling excuses being offered so far by the likes of Mueller, Clapper, Cheney, King, Fleischer et al strains credulity.

Here are his concerns about what is going on in his own words.

You can decide whether you trust him or Mueller. I trust Democrats like Nadler, Wyden, Conyers, Grayson with my rights and security. I do not trust Republican war criminals and their supporters

Conyers, Nadler, and Scott: NSA-Phone Tracking is Overbroad; Call for Immediate Hearings

(WASHINGTON) – Following the public revelation concerning the collection of phone records, Ranking Member of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.), Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), and Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-Va.) issued the following statement:

“The recent revelation that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court has approved the blanket and ongoing collection of telephone records -- including those of everyday Americans with absolutely no ties to terrorism – – is highly problematic and reveals serious flaws in the scope and application of the USA PATRIOT Act. We believe this type of program is far too broad and is inconsistent with our Nation’s founding principles. We cannot defeat terrorism by compromising our commitment to our civil rights and liberties.

“As senior members of the Committee, we have long fought against Congress’s grant of such overbroad surveillance authority to the executive branch. The intended goal of Section 215, was to ensure that our law enforcement and intelligence agencies have the ability to investigate foreign-based terrorist activities. But we have long voiced our concerns that, as drafted and interpreted, Section 215 does not require a sufficient connection to terrorist activity before allowing for the potentially overbroad collection of information.

“And while the recent revelations confirm our fears – that the law would be distorted to allow for ongoing, indiscriminate collection of data – this problem unquestionably predates the current Administration. Indeed, once the National Security Agency’s vast over-collection of metadata like that at issue here was publicized during the Bush Administration, we fought for meaningful Congressional review and amendment of the PATRIOT Act’s surveillance authorities – introducing legislation, offering amendments, and ultimately voting against blanket reauthorization of the very provision at issue here.

“We strongly disagree with those who would assert that because this type of program appears to be long standing and Members of Congress may have been briefed, that it is acceptable to us or the Congress. A classified briefing which does not permit any public discussion does not imply approval or acceptance. We believe the House Judiciary Committee should conduct oversight hearings about this situation and promptly consider legislation to help correct this matter.”

We need more Jerry Nadlers and Ron Wydens in Congress. They actually take their oaths of office seriously.

Why Snowden's Resume Actually Is Important!

If the stories are correct about Snowden's resume, we should be even more concerned about our 'Intelligence' community and the standards required of those entrusted with our Rights and Security.

Do they really hire people and give them access to such sensitive information without knowing anything about their backgrounds?

Us Fears Snowden Will Defect to China

When Edward Snowden revealed himself to be the source of the NSA leaks in an interview with The Guardian Sunday, he briefly described how he went from a high school dropout to a man entrusted with some of the nation's most closely guarded secrets. An investigation by ABC News pieced together the many parts that he left out.

After Snowden quit high school, he earned his GED and then undertook a self-designed college education through a patchwork of classes at community, for-profit and online schools.

To those who are using his resume to discredit HIM, they need to ask themselves who hired him?

Jeremy Bash, former CIA and Pentagon Chief of Staff, told ABC News today that the possibility of Snowden defecting to China, or even cooperating with Chinese officials, is a top concern for U.S. officials.

"He could do tremendous damage," Bash said during an interview for the ABC News/Yahoo Power Players series. "I think if a foreign government learned everything that was in Edward Snowden's brain, they would have a good window into the way we collect signals intelligence… He had access to highly classified information."

Really? I am sure those who are raising the issue of his resume must now be very concerned about this massive surveillance program we are supposed to 'trust' our government with.

It certainly isn't his fault if they didn't care about his resume, is it? 'Everything that is in Snowden's brain' could give people a window into all our secrets'. Really?

How many other twenty somethings are running around with our personal data 'in their brains' and how many of them are likely to use it on a personal level to satisfy a personal grudge of some kind?

And yet, those outraged over his resume, are totally trusting with placing the protection of our Rights and Security in the hands of THOSE WHO HIRED HIM??

Does that make any sense?

I don't care much about his resume, I oppose Bush's policies period. There would be no Snowden without Bush's policies.

But if his resume is your concern, have you even asked yourself why he was hired with such a resume and how many others there are that our leaders know so little about but are trusting with your personal information and security?

It is dangerous to allow any Government to have this kind of power.

Let's hope Snowden isn't petty and vindictive as they gave him access to all that personal information.

Editing to include the Rude Pundit's take on Snowden's Detractors:

See, if Snowden is a misfit toy crossed with Rain Man, how the fuck did he get such a high security clearance? If he was such a loose cannon-in-waiting, why didn't the intelligence apparatus see that in him and not give him the ability to deal with Top Secret material? How good is an intelligence organization that can't successfully vet its workers? And if we can't trust them to read the tea leaves on the people who are being asked to read the tea leaves, how the fuck can we trust them to sift through our metadata or web histories?

Lol, he beat me to it!

H/T to DU's Meegbear. You can read the rest of the Rude One's opinion here: http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=3016093

Are The American People Being Spied On Or Not?

I see there are attempts to distract from this question. And we should expect more, lots more.

However the President confirmed for me this week, that my telephone company has been spying on me.

That is the issue for the American People.

Wrong doing on the part of Snowden is the business of our judicial system.

That has zero to do with the question 'Is our government spying on us'.

For anyone who has doubts that their phone companies have any right to spy on them without their knowledge, I am posting the 4th Amendment:

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.

Pay particular attention to the part that requires 'probable cause'.

And here is the oath of office taken by our elected officials:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.

Note, there is no requirement to protect Corporations, or secret courts or elected officials who betray this country. Just the US Constitution. If anyone doesn't think this is how it should be, then they need to work to change it. But for now, the most important duty of an elected official is to protect and defend the US Constitution.

If Snowden is guilty of some crime, then he should be prosecuted and tried, in public, with no 'redacted' material hidden from the public.

His guilt or innocence however has nothing to do with what we have learned over the past week and will not distract from the even more important issue for the American people. Is our government spying on us without probable cause?

I fully expect that if he is a traitor, he like all other traitors, (Bush, Cheney, Rummy and all the rest of those who failed to defend and protect the US Constitution, come to mind), will be indicted, prosecuted and tried for those crimes.

Just wanted to add, that last part re the War Criminals was wishful thinking on my part. If he IS treated like those traitors, he has nothing to fear. But he won't be, the laws are different for the 1%.

'No one is above the law'!

Or are they?

We will not be distracted from the most important issue, which is our Rights under the US Constitution however.
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