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Member since: Wed May 27, 2015, 02:02 PM
Number of posts: 336

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DEA eavesdropping tripled, bypassed federal courts

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration more than tripled its use of wiretaps and other types of electronic eavesdropping over the past decade, largely bypassing federal courts and Justice Department lawyers in the process, newly obtained records show.

The DEA conducted 11,681 electronic intercepts in the fiscal year that ended in September. Ten years earlier, the drug agency conducted 3,394.

Most of that ramped-up surveillance was never reviewed by federal judges or Justice Department lawyers, who typically are responsible for examining federal agents' eavesdropping requests. Instead, DEA agents now take 60% of those requests directly to local prosecutors and judges from New York to California, who current and former officials say often approve them more quickly and easily.

Drug investigations account for the vast majority of U.S. wiretaps, and much of that surveillance is carried out by the DEA. Privacy advocates expressed concern that the drug agency had expanded its surveillance without going through internal Justice Department reviews, which often are more demanding than federal law requires.


Sen. Bernie Sanders helps deliver 2,000,000 signatures to Congress in effort to stop Fast Track

2 million signatures being delivered to Congress today to #StopFastTrack - @SenSanders talks on why this is critical. pic.twitter.com/wrWPZc78Ao


"America won't vote for a Socialist Jew"

The FCC Just Made It Easier to Raise Your Cable Rates

The Federal Communications Commission has quietly approved a proposal that could make it easier for major cable providers like Comcast to raise prices.

The decision is a rare win at the FCC for the cable industry, which has suffered a series of losses on net neutrality and other major issues under Chairman Tom Wheeler, himself a former cable lobbyist.

The FCC voted 3-to-2 Tuesday to limit the power of state and local regulators over cable TV packages and prices. The agency declared that it will assume that there is "effective competition" for cable services nationwide.

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler won support from the commission's two Republicans, but the two other Democrats opposed the decision, agency officials said. It is extremely unusual for an FCC chairman to side against the commissioners in his own party. A spokesperson for Wheeler declined to comment on the decision, which has not yet been made public.


Rand Paul backtracks, says GOP isn't entirely responsible for creating ISIS

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) backtracked on his recent comments that hawkish Republicans were responsible for creating the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS.

Last week, Paul said the Islamic State "exists and grows stronger" because of Republican hawks who were too eager to arm Syrian rebels. Pressed on those comments by Fox News Host Sean Hannity on Monday, Paul took some of the blame off Republicans.

"I think ultimately I could have maybe stated it a little bit better," said Paul, who is seeking the Republican nomination for president. "The ultimate people who are responsible for terrorism are obviously the terrorists. So ISIS is responsible for the mayhem, the murders, the brutality, the beheadings, that's ISIS."

Paul linked the rise of ISIS to the policies of President Barack Obama, but stopped short of saying his party was not responsible at all.

There's not a sincere bone in this man's body.


Obama goes into overdrive on trade push

President Barack Obama has begun to barrage House Democrats with phone calls in hopes of explaining to members of his own party why they should break their near uniform opposition and support his trade agenda.
House Republicans, meanwhile, are feeling newfound optimism that at least 190 of their lawmakers will support so-called trade promotion authority giving the president power to fast-track free-trade agreements. That would mean roughly 27 Democrats would need to support the legislation in order to hand Obama his largest legislative victory in years. Eighteen Democrats are currently on record backing the bill.

It’s now up to Obama to flip the rest.

Speaker John Boehner, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and Chief Deputy Whip Patrick McHenry will meet with undecided Republicans this week to press them to vote “yes.” A significant pool of GOP lawmakers are holding out, and will commit to no one other than Boehner and McCarthy. They want to convey to the top two leaders how tough of a vote this is.

Republican leaders are sparing no effort in the whip effort and believe they’re on track to notch a historically high vote total for a trade bill. Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) also has several meetings with lawmakers who are undecided or currently opposed to the package. He will also join GOP leadership in a meeting Wednesday with trade associations, agriculture groups and manufacturers that’s expected to draw 150 attendees.


Bernie VS Hillary On The Economy & Income Inequality

How Potent Is Bernie Chic?

The fact there's someone running for POTUS who calls attention to the hardships of KY gives me hope

We have been ignored and written off by the party for so long, this gives me hope.

Duggar Family Pastor Who Defended Josh Duggar Comes Out Against Caitlyn Jenner

Dr. Ronnie Floyd, pastor at the church attended by reality show family the Duggars, criticized Caitlyn Jenner's "sins" in a sermon this past Sunday and compared them to abuse against children or family members.

“You are formed by God specifically and intentionally,” Floyd explained to the conregation, “There are two different sexes, male and female. And the whole scheme of the world today is to try to get us to see those are very, very unclear lines. They’re not unclear lines. They are clear lines.”

"Anytime we demean the value of human beings, we violate what God intends for that human being,” Floyd continued, “It doesn’t matter what the situation is. A child, a spouse, a family member. Doesn’t matter what it is. Doesn’t matter whether it’s ISIS, Boko Haram or any other group that’s coming against Christianity today. It doesn’t matter. God can save them all.”

“You know, this is going to shock some of you, and it might even be offensive to some of you,” said Floyd, “But I want to make something real clear, Bruce Jenner is just like you and me.”

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