Posts tagged authority
2013 in Review: The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
As the year draws to a close, EFF is looking back at the major trends influencing digital rights in 2013 and discussing where we are in the fight for free expression, innovation, fair use, and privacy. Click here to read other blog posts in this series.
Negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) intensified in 2013, as trade delegates from the 12 participating countries aimed for (and ultimately missed) a year-end target for completing the sprawling agreement. Although the secretive nature of the negotiations means the public can’t really know how far along it is, both leaked position documents and public statements indicate that there are still major unresolved areas of disagreement in the 29-chapter deal.
The biggest TPP story this year was the publication by WikiLeaks in November of the chapter titled “Intellectual Property.” Unfortunately, its contents confirmed many of our worst fears: from ratcheting up copyright term lengths around the world, to boxing in fair use, to mandating a draconian legal regime around DRM software, section after section contained clauses plucked from corporate wishlists and snubbed the public interest altogether.
Against that backdrop, it makes sense that opposition to the agreement is mounting around the world. In May, EFF joined activists and protesters in Peru surrounding the round of negotiations held in Lima. As has been typical, neither public interest groups nor concerned citizens were allowed time with negotiators, but we helped coordinate a major petition and rally. These joined actions happening in TPP countries around the Pacific rim, from Japan to Australia to Mexico and more.
In the U.S., opposition has focused on the Obama administrations calls for Congress to grant “fast track authority,” thus waiving its constitutional role of reviewing international agreements. If it passes fast track, Congress would instead be limited to a single yes-or-no vote. Under normal circumstances that’s dangerous. But in a case where the public (and even Congressional staffers) haven’t been allowed to read the agreement at all yet, that’s reckless behavior.
We’ve set up a tool to allow people in the U.S. to contact their legislators asking them to oppose fast track authority for TPP, and people have already used it to send tens of thousands of letters. You can use it to send a letter today. Lawmakers seem to be taking notice: in the past few months, bipartisan letters from House Republicans and Democrats have firmly rejected the lack of transparency around the agreement, casting serious doubt on the possibility of fast track authority.
The year-end deadline has passed, but negotiators—especially the U.S. Trade Representative—continue to play up an artificial urgency to push the agreement through. The secret meetings between the trade delegates will continue into the new year, with the first one set for February.
This article is part of our 2013 Year in Review series; read other articles about the fight for digital rights in 2013.
Image credit: https://www.eff.org
Published on Jan 26, 2013 by Eduardo89rp
Ron Paul giving the Carl Davis Distinguished Lecture on “The Libertarian Future”
Mack to Obama, “you have no authority to tell me what kind of gun I can own, how big of a clip I can own, or even that I have to go through your stupid background checks. I’ll own whatever kind of gun I want, and it’s NONE OF YOUR DAMN BUSINESS! LEAVE US THE HELL ALONE!”
Sheriff Mack was at a “Guns Across America” rally at the capital steps in Austin, TX. There were around 2,500 in attendance at the rally.
Mack has been exhorting lawmen, especially the county sheriff, that they are the last line of defense when it comes to protecting their citizens’ rights.
He made the point that sheriff’s are obligated to enforce the law, and the supreme law of the land is the Constitution.
By Teri Webster
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will face some push-back during the big Thanksgiving travel week, as part of the Alex-Jones-ordered “Opt Out and Film Week.”
From Nov. 19 through Nov. 26, Jones is encouraging travelers to refuse to go through the radiation-laden body scanners. They should also film the invasive body pat-down that will likely ensue if they decide to opt-out.
The movement is designed to expose the practices of the TSA and help preserve basic human rights while traveling.
Some of the abuses of the TSA chronicled recent months include manhandling children, the elderly, severely ill and disabled passengers; stealing from passengers, testing drinks that travelers purchased inside airports and ordering travelers to freeze on command.
Infowars.com gives the following reasons to participate in the opt-out movement:
*Protesting the increased cancer risks and possible DNA damages associated with backscatter body scanners.
*The TSA has no right to take, transmit and file X-ray photographs that reduce travelers to naked pieces of documentation.
*The TSA is more interested in teaching you to submit to authority than teaching you the importance of airport security.
Jones and his crew have provided flyers to be printed out and used for the week-long event.
In a prepared statement, Jones said:
“Infowars is pioneering a new civil rights movement that is not based around race, sex or any other minority issue. The fact that our rights are being violated and characterized as suspicious and terroristic threatens the freedom of every individual, no matter from what what race, gender or creed they originate.
We are being systematically intimidated out of expressing our right to free speech as part of the advancement towards a new dark age of tyranny.”
Jones cautioned participants that even though it is technically legal to film the TSA, participants can expect to face harassment or arrest for standing up to the agency.
In 2010, the TSA shut off the body scanner machines nation-wide after citizens planned an opt-out protest. Jones has said that proves the system is not based on real security concerns, but serves as a mechanism to humiliate and domesticate the American public.
The TSA is already removing some of the body scanners from airports. Part of the reason for the removal of the machines is the naked images they produce, according to USA Today.
Lew Rockwell appears on the Alex Jones show and discusses what’s next for the liberty movements fight against statism. At the beginning of the interview Lew tells us that Ron Paul has big plans for the liberty movement but cannot reveal them until he is out of congress. Lew says that Ron Paul will be more powerful now that he is out of politics.
Related Post: Lew Rockwell Owns the Gang of Overlords
Video Location: http://rtr.org/vid/5472/michael-badnarik-the-constitution-is-still-relevant
Published on Oct 19, 2012 by TheAlexJonesChannel
As mentioned in the interview as essential reading, The Law By Frederic Bastiat, can be downloaded free for either the written or the audio book here: The Law by Frederick Bastiat
Tennessee Sheriffs Cracks Down On Obama Federal Agents Gone WIld: NDAA Nullified And Kidnapping Charges Against Feds..
State and local resistance to the detention provisions contained in the National Defense Authorization Act continues to grow, rapidly emerging as a nationwide movement.
The Tennessee legislature will consider HB1629 and SB2669 in the 2012 session. The legislation would effectively nullify the detention provisions in the NDAA and would also require federal agents making an arrest in the Volunteer State for any reason to first obtain written permission from the county sheriff.
This bill declares that any federal law purporting to require local or state law enforcement agencies to act at the direction of the federal government or the United States military is beyond the authority granted to the federal government pursuant to the United States Constitution, is not recognized by this state, is specifically rejected by this state and is declared to be invalid in this state. This bill further declares that any federal law purporting to give federal agents or employees, including any members of the United States military, the authority of any state or local law enforcement agency of this state, without the express permission of this state, is beyond the authority granted to the federal government pursuant to the United States Constitution, is not recognized by this state, is specifically rejected by this state, and is declared to be invalid in this state.
The act takes aim at indefinite detention provisions in the NDAA. Tenth Amendment Center communications director Mike Maharrey called language in the NDAA vague and overbroad, pointing out that Americans should never simply trust in the good intentions and moral clarity of the president or federal judges to protect their rights.
“It falls on the states to step in and protect their citizens,” he said. “I can’t imagine a more clear-cut application of state and local interposition as a check on federal power. What could be a more palpable, deliberate and dangerous unconstitutional act than the federal government indefinitely detaining an American citizen without due process?”
The Tennessee bill also “makes it a Class E felony for any official, agent, or employee of the United States government to enforce or attempt to enforce any federal law, order, rule or regulation that is beyond the authority granted to the federal government pursuant to the United States Constitution,” and includes provisions for kidnapping charges if a federal agent were to detain a U.S. citizen in Tennessee under the NDAA.
Rep. Bill Dunn (R-Knoxville) and Rep. Cameron Sexton (R-Crossville) sponsor the House version of the bill. Sen. Stacey Campfield (R-Knoxville) sponsors the Senate bill.
The Volunteer state joins Washington and Virginia considering legislation to nullify detention provisions in the NDAA. And local governments have also stepped up, including El Paso and Fremont Counties in Colorado. While some argue the NDAA doesn’t apply to American citizens, Maharrey said that notion should not stop state and local governments from following James Madison’s admonition to interpose and draw a line in the sand.
“If what supporters say is true and the NDAA does not authorize indefinite detention of Americans, what is the harm in this legislation? Why would anybody oppose it? It does nothing but serve notice that state and local officials will not sit back and allow the federal government to exercise unconstitutional powers – powers supporters claim don’t exist anyway. It simply affirms a fence that supposedly already exists. The only rational I can find for opposing this bill is if they really do want the option of detaining Americans without due process to remain open,” he said. “You can only oppose this legislation if you accept the idea that the federal government has the authority to do whatever it wants with absolutely no check on its actions – Constitution be damned. If you ask me, that’s a lot scarier than whatever terrorist threat they claim to be protecting me from.”
TAC executive Michael Boldin said he expects other states to soon follow the lead of Tennessee, Virginia and Washington.
“We have pretty strong indications that Rhode Island, Utah, Maine, New Jersey, Oklahoma and other states will be introducing similar legislation soon. This is just a start – and activists all over the country need to contact state legislators right now to voice their support.”
For model Liberty Preservation Act legislation you can propose to your state lawmakers, click HERE.
To track state and local legislation across the U.S., click HERE.
By Paul Joseph Watson
Creators set sights on control freak society
The creators of South Park have lampooned just about every authority figure going, so it was only a matter of time before they turned their attention to the TSA.
Judging by the preview clip of season 16′s premiere, Trey Parker and Matt Stone have set their sights on satirizing the out of control nanny state that America has become. The clip shows the ‘Randy Marsh’ receiving a ticket from a cop for failing to wear a seatbelt during a visit to the toilet.
“After a South Park citizen meets with an unfortunate accident, the TSA steps in to prevent it from happening again in an all-new episode of “South Park” titled, “Reverse Cowgirl,” premiering Wednesday, March 14 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on COMEDY CENTRAL,” reads the press release.
It’s little surprise that the TSA is now the butt of late night comedy jokes given that the federal agency has become a national disgrace on the back of its insane policies and its habitual deceit whenever it gets caught abusing travelers.
Parker and Stone are libertarians who have used their cartoon comedy to expose the hypocrisy that runs rampant in modern day society, most notably making mincemeat out of Al Gore’s global warming alarmism in the episode entitled ManBearPig.
Hopefully this episode will further highlight the fact that the TSA is an army of control freaks and that the entire agency should be abolished as soon as possible.
Final Episode of Freedom Watch: When the Government Fears the People, There Is Liberty
Now more than every we need the Champion of the Constitution!
Please visit Ron Paul’s official campaign site by following the link below and donate today!
In another outrageous power-grab, FDA says your own stem cells are drugs—and stem cell therapy is interstate commerce because it affects the bottom line of FDA-approved drugs in other states!
We wish this were a joke, but it’s the US Food and Drug Administration’s latest claim in its battle with a Colorado clinic over its Regenexx-SD™ procedure, a non-surgical treatment for people suffering from moderate to severe joint or bone pain using adult stem cells.
The FDA asserts in a court document that it has the right to regulate the Centeno-Schultz Clinic for two reasons:
- Stem cells are drugs and therefore fall within their jurisdiction. (The clinic argues that stem cell therapy is the practice of medicine and is therefore not within the FDA’s jurisdiction!)
- The clinic is engaging in interstate commerce and is therefore subject to FDA regulation because any part of the machine or procedure that originates outside Colorado becomes interstate commerce once it enters the state. Moreover, interstate commerce is substantially affected because individuals traveling to Colorado to have the Regenexx procedure would “depress the market for out-of-state drugs that are approved by FDA.”
We discussed the very ambiguous issue of interstate commerce last September—it’s an argument the FDA frequently uses when the basis for their claim is otherwise lacking. As we noted then, the FDA holds that an “interstate commerce” test must be applied to all steps in a product’s manufacture, packaging, and distribution. This means that if any ingredient or tool used in the procedure in question was purchased out of state, the FDA would in its view have jurisdiction, just as they would if the final product had traveled across state lines.
This time the FDA just nakedly says in court documents that the agency wants to protect the market for FDA-approved drugs. No more beating around the bush—their agenda is right out in the open! This appears to be a novel interpretation of the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act (FD&C), as evidenced by the government’s failure to cite any judicial precedent for their argument.
The implication of the FDA’s interpretation of the law, if upheld by the court, would mean that all food, drugs, devices, and biologic or cosmetic products would be subject to FDA jurisdiction. The FDA is expanding its reach even to commerce within the state, which we argue is far beyond its jurisdiction, in order to protect drug company profits.
The Centeno-Schultz Clinic takes your blood, puts it into a centrifuge machine that separates the stem cells, and a doctor puts them back in your body where there is damaged tissue. The clinic has argued numerous times that stem cells aren’t drugs because they are components of the patient’s blood from his or her own body.
The FDA says otherwise: “Stem cells, like other medical products that are intended to treat, cure, or prevent disease, generally require FDA approval before they can be marketed. At this time, there are no licensed stem cell treatments.” There they go again, saying that components of your body are drugs and they have the authority to regulate them! It’s the only way the agency can claim that adult stem cell therapy is within FDA’s purview.
However, the agency seems to be of two minds. When ESPN magazine was doing a story on stem cell treatments, the FDA stated that US policy is to allow the injection of stem cells that are treated with “minimal manipulation,” which federal regulations define as “processing that does not alter the relevant biological characteristics of cells or tissues”—which is certainly the case with the Regenexx clinic.
Despite this policy, FDA has been attacking the clinic for the past four years. They have tried injunctions and demanded inspections in their attempts to make the company bend; this court battle is merely the latest salvo.
The primary role of adult stem cells in a living organism is to maintain and repair the tissue in which they are found. The hard part has been to get enough of them. But new technology is giving doctors the ability to obtain more stem cells from a patient than previously thought possible, which is why we’re now seeing new treatments. Blood, fat, or tissue is withdrawn from the patient, stem cells are obtained using one of these new processes, and the cells are injected back into the patient where they can repair the patient’s tissue.
Gov. Rick Perry received this kind of stem cell therapy. We and others noted that the governor’s defense of freedom of healthcare choice when it came to his own treatment was starkly at odds with his directive to administer HPV vaccines to young girls against their own (and their parents’) wishes. It’s also at odds with his support for some of the most egregious witch-hunters on the Texas State Medical Board, which he appoints.
Behind Perry’s blatant inconsistency and the latest FDA attempted power grab lies the same problem: a medical system run by special interests under the leadership of the US government, the same government that is supposed to represent “we the people.”