Posts tagged DOJ
The EyeOpener Report- The AP Spying Story: What You Aren’t Being Told
In recent weeks we have been told to focus on a series of scandals which, we are told, are rocking the Obama Administration. Has the media finally found outrage over the Obama regime’s use of drone strikes to kill scores of innocent women and children in countries that are not even at war with the United States? Or the DOJ’s recent admission that the strikes had indeed killed American citizens? Or John Kerry’s recent attempts to once again lead the American public into supporting military intervention in the Middle East based on provably false claims of WMD?
Of course not. No, the media’s sudden discovery of outrage is directed at an entirely different scandal: the fact that reporters have now allegedly found themselves in the government’s crosshairs.
Find out more about the real scandal behind the AP spying story in this week’s edition of The Boiling Frogs Post EyeOpener Report.
Watch the Full Video Report Here:
TRANSCRIPT AND SOURCES: http://www.corbettreport.com/?p=7416
This is Chuck Todd, NBC’s political news director saying this.
Posted by TheYoungTurks
“Conspiracy theorists of the world, believers in the hidden hands of the Rothschilds and the Masons and the Illuminati, we skeptics owe you an apology. You were right. The players may be a little different, but your basic premise is correct: The world is a rigged game. We found this out in recent months, when a series of related corruption stories spilled out of the financial sector, suggesting the world’s largest banks may be fixing the prices of, well, just about everything.”*
The Libor bank scandal has nothing on the newest interest rate swap manipulation scheme where bankers are going completely unchecked. This is a $379 trillion market– why are bankers allowed to manipulate it without restraint? Cenk Uygur breaks it down.
Yes, a major bank scheme, yes, the game is rigged, and this bank scheme is only one of many.
The U.S. Government has just submitted its objections to Megaupload’s motion to dismiss the case against the company. Megaupload’s lawyers have pointed out that the Department of Justice is trying to change the law to legitimize the destruction of Megaupload. However, the Government refutes this assertion and asks the court to deny Megaupload’s motion, fearing that otherwise the entire case may fall apart.
Several months ago Megaupload filed a request to dismiss the indictment against it, until the U.S. Government finds a way to properly serve the company.
Megaupload based its request on “Rule 4” of criminal procedure, which requires the authorities to serve a company at an address in the United States. However, since Megaupload is a Hong Kong company, this was and is impossible.
The defense argued that the court can only protect Megaupload’s due process rights by dismissing the case. However, the Government disagreed and asked the court to deny Megaupload’s motion. Among other things the Government claimed that federal rules shouldn’t be interpreted so narrowly.
Two weeks ago Megaupload renewed its request and the defunct file-hosting company noted that the Government was trying to change the law in its favor. The lawyers cited a letter to the Advisory Committee on the Criminal Rules where the DoJ made suggestions that would directly influence the Megaupload case.
Among other things the letter suggested an amendment to the law so that it would no longer be a requirement to serve a foreign company in the United States. Megaupload’s lawyers used the letter to point out to the court that the Government knew very well that it was not playing by the rules.
This week the U.S. Government replied to the motion, stating that Megaupload misrepresents the facts.
The Government explains that the DoJ’s letter begins with “a bedrock principle of criminal law, one that applies equally to both organizations and natural persons,” citing the following passage:
“When a person located abroad violates the laws of the United States, that person may be held criminally liable despite the fact that the person has never set foot in the United States.”
In other words, every person and company in the world should comply with U.S. law.
http://NextNewsNetwork.com | The NDAA has been called the death of our republican form of government. That acronym refers to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, which contains a provision allowing the president to order the indefinite military detention of anyone accused of offering substantial support to al-Qaeda or “associated forces.”
The measure does not define critical terms — for instance, what groups would be considered “associated forces.” And it applies to U.S. citizens, who — under the ambiguous and expansive terms of that measure — could be detained by the military, on U.S. soil, until what the measure calls the “end of hostilities,” which in the open-ended war on terror could mean forever. According to Obama administration spokesmen, the NDAA could be used to imprison war correspondents and other journalists who cover terrorism-related issues.
The NDAA has no parallel in American history. In fact, it is without precedent in the history of Anglo-Saxon law since the Magna Carta was signed in 1215. Perhaps the closest historical kindred to the NDAA would be Article 58 of the Soviet Criminal Code, which allowed for arrest and summary imprisonment of anyone suspected of working to undermine the Soviet state.
Journalist and activist Tangerine Bolen is one of eight plaintiffs in a lawsuit against the NDAA. Although she voted for Obama, she describes herself as “terrified” by the arbitrary powers that the president and his advisers can now exercise in the name of fighting terrorism.
Next News Network’s WHDT World News Program airs daily at 6pm and 11pm Eastern on Comcast, DirecTV and Over-the-Air and Online at http://usmediavault.com/WHDT.html
Tangerine Bolen – http://StopNDAA.ORG
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Even a fiat currency and the casino game of fractional reserve standards are not enough to cover the never ending greed. Banks use your deposited money plus imaginary reserve policy funds to make bad bets, and lose. But who really lost? The banks get bailed out by Washington D.C. criminals, you get foreclosed on and then you are responsible for the cost of the bailout.
Part 1 of 4. To view complete please follow the link provided above. Bernie Madoff and other smaller fish got constant mainstream media coverage while the big ponzi scheme rolls along with white glove treatment, as it seems only the Wall Street thieves approved by D.C. are officially too big to fail.
Your thoughts appreciated below.
By Neil Macdonald, CBC News
Posted: Feb 6, 2013
Some say U.S. president is waging a ‘war on whistleblowers’
In 2001, when Israel started killing militant Palestinian enemies (and, often, innocent bystanders) with missiles fired from helicopters hovering so high you could barely see them, foreign reporters were urged by the Israeli government to call the practice “targeted killing.”
Most of us, including many of my American colleagues, preferred the term “extrajudicial assassination.” We felt we were in the news business, not the euphemism business.
Today, 12 years later, the Washington Post carries a front-page headline about the U.S. drone program titled, “Targeted killings face new scrutiny.”
Yet another government document has been leaked, this time a so-called “white paper” in which the U.S. Department of Justice lays out the administration’s justification for killing American citizens it suspects of belonging to Al-Qaeda.
U.S. media outlets, it seems, are perfectly comfortable with the term “targeted killing,” now that it is a major tool for the Pentagon and CIA.
It’s also clear American media outlets are comfortable suppressing news the government does not want published. Today’s story reveals not just that the Americans have operated a secret drone base for years in Saudi Arabia, but that the Post, along with various other news organizations, have been keeping that fact to themselves at the government’s request.
History of suppressing sensitive information
It isn’t the first time such information has been suppressed. In 2005, bowing to the White House, the New York Times for months kept confidential the fact that the Bush administration had been carrying out warrantless wiretapping. The revelations eventually provoked Congress to pass a new law.
Reports on the U.S. drone program, also based on leaks, have described how Barack Obama’s administration has become ever more dependent on remote-controlled killing. Obama himself reportedly signs off personally on each target.
The American public has been largely unconcerned with the program, except when the person killed has been an American citizen. (The U.S., unlike many other countries, accords its citizens special protections from government intrusions.)
That is the focus of the latest leak. The “white paper” in today’s story appears under the arid title “Lawfulness of a Lethal Operation Directed Against a U.S. Citizen Who Is a Senior Operational Leader of Al Qaeda or an Associated Force.”
The term “senior operational leader” appears to be key. An American citizen who is a low-level fighter would appear to enjoy a legal immunity that does not extend to foreign nationals suspected of planning or involvement in attacks on Americans.
As the Post story rather dryly notes, “The number of attacks on Americans is minuscule compared with the broader toll of the drone campaign, which has killed more than 3,000 militants and civilians in hundreds of strikes in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.”
There is an accompanying article today on the astonishing fact that 54 countries, including Canada, have participated in or enabled the CIA’s “extraordinary rendition” program of sending suspected militants to be interrogated, sometimes under torture, in secret prisons and by totalitarian regimes worldwide.
Twelve years ago, reporters had a different term for that sort of thing, too: kidnapping.
Obama’s ‘war on whistleblowers’
All these hardened security measures were begun under the Bush administration. President Obama, who once denounced them and even, as president, ordered Bush legal memos be made public, has not just amplified Bush’s programs, but has begun vigorously hunting down and prosecuting officials who leak details.
And that is one initiative the American media is not so comfortable with.
Some are calling it Obama’s “war on whistleblowers.” Current Attorney-General Eric Holder has prosecuted more officials for leaking information to reporters than any of his predecessors since the Second World War.
The government has hunted down intelligence officials who leaked details of expensive programs to spy on internet traffic, wiretaps placed in the Israeli embassy in Washington and of Obama’s personal involvement in selecting drone targets.
The lawyer for one of those officials said Holder’s prosecutors “don’t distinguish between bad people – people who spy for other governments, people who sell secrets for money – and people who are accused of having conversations and discussions.”
Several news outlets have noted, rather acidly, that the administration seems fairly expert at leaking classified material that makes the government look good.
None of this makes Obama different from any previous president. It just demonstrates his ability to keep the nation’s media on board, and mete out punishment when they publish the wrong sorts of secrets.
Republished with permission
By Kathy Gill
Commentary: I spent much of Saturday trying to reconcile two very different approaches to justice meted out by the Obama Administration.
The first is old (mid-December) news: British bank HSBC launders money for at least a decade and is fined four weeks earnings. I learned about it Friday from The Daily Show.
How can anyone other than a banking executive look at this action on the part of the U.S. government and say, “There is justice here; this is fair and reasonable.”
They can’t. Because it’s not.
The other case is about Aaron Swartz, a talented and extraordinary young man, a technologist and activist. At age 14, he helped develop RSS, the technology that underpins the web’s information subscription system.
Cory Doctorow called him “a full-time, uncompromising, reckless and delightful shit-disturber.”
At age 26, he killed himself this weekend.
In its obituary, the NY Times notes his sense of public good, reporting that in 2008 he joined forces with Carl Malamud, the founder of public.resource.org, to make legal records freely accessible. Aaron legally obtained about 20 million pages of documents from PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records), the repository for federal judicial documents.
The government shut down the free library program, and Mr. Malamud feared that legal trouble might follow even though he felt they had violated no laws. As he recalled in a newspaper account, “I immediately saw the potential for overreaction by the courts.” He recalled telling Mr. Swartz: “You need to talk to a lawyer. I need to talk to a lawyer.”
Mr. Swartz recalled in a 2009 interview, “I had this vision of the feds crashing down the door, taking everything away.” He said he locked the deadbolt on his door, lay down on the bed for a while and then called his mother.
The federal government investigated but did not prosecute.
Also in 2008, Aaron issued a Guerrilla Open Access Manifesto, calling for scholarly work to be released online in the “grand tradition of civil disobedience.” Research demonstrates that openly accessible publications are cited by others more often than research blocked by digital lock-and-key. This spread of knowledge is good for society as a whole.
Yet the DOJ, in the person of Carmen M. Ortiz, U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, indicted Aaron, charging him with stealing 4 million documents from MIT and JSTOR.
If convicted, Aaron faced up to 35 years in prison and $1 million in fines.
For a first offense, a victimless crime where more than half of the information was in the public domain and where the “stolen property” had been returned. Where there was no harm and no theft according to one expert witness, only a Minority Report-like “pre-crime” presumption.
His expert witness clearly articulates the weakness of the DOJ case.
I know a criminal hack when I see it, and Aaron’s downloading of journal articles from an unlocked closet is not an offense worth 35 years in jail.
At the time of Aaron’s actions, the JSTOR website allowed an unlimited number of downloads by anybody on MIT’s 18.x Class-A network.
Aaron Swartz … was an intelligent young man who found a loophole that would allow him to download a lot of documents quickly. This loophole was created intentionally by MIT and JSTOR, and was codified contractually in the piles of paperwork turned over during discovery.
If I had taken the stand as planned and had been asked by the prosecutor whether Aaron’s actions were “wrong”, I would probably have replied that what Aaron did would better be described as “inconsiderate”. In the same way it is inconsiderate to write a check at the supermarket while a dozen people queue up behind you or to check out every book at the library needed for a History 101 paper. It is inconsiderate to download lots of files on shared wifi or to spider Wikipedia too quickly, but none of these actions should lead to a young person being hounded for years and haunted by the possibility of a 35 year sentence.
You have to ask yourself: who in the Department of Justice did Aaron embarrass so badly back in 2008? Or which academic journal publisher has an “in” with the U.S. government?
Let me close with this observation from lawyer Lawrence Lessig:
Early on, and to its great credit, JSTOR figured “appropriate” out: They declined to pursue their own action against Aaron, and they asked the government to drop its. MIT, to its great shame, was not as clear, and so the prosecutor had the excuse he needed to continue his war against the “criminal” who we who loved him knew as Aaron.
He was brilliant, and funny. A kid genius. A soul, a conscience, the source of a question I have asked myself a million times: What would Aaron think? That person is gone today, driven to the edge by what a decent society would only call bullying. I get wrong. But I also get proportionality. And if you don’t get both, you don’t deserve to have the power of the United States government behind you.
How can anyone other than a publishing executive look at this action on the part of the U.S. government and say “that’s fair and reasonable.”
They can’t. Because it’s not.
The mission of the Department of Justice is, in part, “to seek just punishment for those guilty of unlawful behavior, and to ensure fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans.”
They failed on both counts here.
Our public legal system — the one that is supposed to be looking out for us, the citizens of the United States — kowtowed to a British corporation while grinding its heel into a 26-year-old idealist.
We should be ashamed.
We live in a democracy. Tell your friends but just as importantly, tell your Congressmen and our President.
The DOJ was wrong, not once, but twice.
Only we can make sure it doesn’t happen again.
First published at The Moderate Voice; edited for typo.
Update: 9:45 pm Sunday
Anonymous hacks MIT.edu (the site was down earlier tonight), calls for reform of computer crime law as well as copyright and intellectual property law, “returning it to the proper principles of common good to the many, rather than private gain to the few.”
PDF of the entire page:
Kathy Gill (@kegill)has 20 years experience in digital media—both development and instruction. Since 2003, she has taught at the University of Washington and currently manages the website for King County Elections. A political junkie, her consulting work includes four years writing about U.S. politics for about.com, one of the top 10 visited Web content sites on the Internet, and she has worked with Boeing, AT&T Wireless, SAFECO, and Microsoft on intranet projects.
This article originally appeared on GeekWire.
Re-blogged with permission.
In respect and support, Aaron’s manifesto is posted below.
Guerilla Open Access Manifesto
Information is power. But like all power, there are those who want to keep it for themselves. The world’s entire scientific and cultural heritage, published over centuries in books and journals, is increasingly being digitized and locked up by a handful of private corporations. Want to read the papers featuring the most famous results of the sciences? You’ll need to send enormous amounts to publishers like Reed Elsevier.
There are those struggling to change this. The Open Access Movement has fought valiantly to ensure that scientists do not sign their copyrights away but instead ensure their work is published on the Internet, under terms that allow anyone to access it. But even under the best scenarios, their work will only apply to things published in the future. Everything up until now will have been lost.
That is too high a price to pay. Forcing academics to pay money to read the work of their colleagues? Scanning entire libraries but only allowing the folks at Google to read them? Providing scientific articles to those at elite universities in the First World, but not to children in the Global South? It’s outrageous and unacceptable.
“I agree,” many say, “but what can we do? The companies hold the copyrights, they make enormous amounts of money by charging for access, and it’s perfectly legal — there’s nothing we can do to stop them.” But there is something we can, something that’s already being done: we can fight back.
Those with access to these resources — students, librarians, scientists — you have been given a privilege. You get to feed at this banquet of knowledge while the rest of the world is locked out. But you need not — indeed, morally, you cannot — keep this privilege for yourselves. You have a duty to share it with the world. And you have: trading passwords with colleagues, filling download requests for friends.
Meanwhile, those who have been locked out are not standing idly by. You have been sneaking through holes and climbing over fences, liberating the information locked up by the publishers and sharing them with your friends.
But all of this action goes on in the dark, hidden underground. It’s called stealing or piracy, as if sharing a wealth of knowledge were the moral equivalent of plundering a ship and murdering its crew. But sharing isn’t immoral — it’s a moral imperative. Only those blinded by greed would refuse to let a friend make a copy.
There is no justice in following unjust laws. It’s time to come into the light and, in the grand tradition of civil disobedience, declare our opposition to this private theft of public culture.
We need to take information, wherever it is stored, make our copies and share them with the world.<P>We need to take stuff that’s out of copyright and add it to the archive. We need to buy secret databases and put them on the Web. We need to download scientific journals and upload them to file sharing networks. We need to fight for Guerilla Open Access.
With enough of us, around the world, we’ll not just send a strong message opposing the privatization of knowledge — we’ll make it a thing of the past. Will you join us?
July 2008, Eremo, Italy
(NaturalNews) All Americans who have been prescribed psychiatric medications could be denied their constitutional rights under gun control legislation expected to be introduced into the U.S. Senate on January 22nd. Although the actual text of the bill is not yet available to the public, the heavy emphasis on “mental health” in recent gun control discussions echoes the present-day denial of Second Amendment rights to veterans diagnosed with PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder).
In an effort to deny gun ownership “privileges” to as many Americans as possible, Sen. Feinstein and other proponents of total citizen disarmament could simply expand the definition of those deemed “mentally unfit” for gun purchases to include anyone who has ever been prescribed an antidepressant or a drug for ADHD.
I give credit for this realization to Jon Rappoport, editor of No More Fake News. In a phone conversation yesterday evening, he brought this to my attention, even describing psychiatrists as “the new cops” who get to determine whether you have any rights at all.
Conducting further research on the subject, I found that a national database of prescription drug users already exists. It was created by the National All Schedules Prescription Electronic Reporting Act (NASPER) signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2005.
A government prescription drug surveillance program is already in place
The intent of the NASPRE law was to stop patients from “doc hopping” from one city or state to another in a scam to acquire prescription “controlled substances” such as powerful painkillers. But the effort to monitor controlled substances has morphed into something far more insidious: a multi-state, data-sharing prescription drug surveillance program now run by 48 states.
The website for that program is www.pmpalliance.org which lists its board members as heads of the very same pharmacies that sell controlled substances for profit. And guess where PMPalliance.org gets its funding? The U.S. Dept. of Justice.
This means Obama can simply issue an executive order requiring the DOJ start using the patient prescription surveillance data for a whole new reason: To add people to a “NO GUN BUY list” in much the same way people are mysteriously added to the TSA’s “no-fly lists” today. (Once you’re on the no-fly list, there’s no way to remove yourself from it, no way to challenge being on the list, no due process and absolutely no ability to sue the government to try to get off the list.)
If you take antidepressants, you could be denied the right to self defense
The upshot of all this is that if you ever have purchased prescribed antidepressants or other psychiatric drugs, that record already exists in a government database that could soon be used against you as a weapon to deny you your constitutional rights.
All the government has to do is copy the entire database of psychiatric medication patients it already possesses, then paste that list into the FBI’s instant gun-purchase background check system known as NICS.
Once flagged in the NICS database, you will never be able to legally purchase a firearm again in America.
Importantly, this action does not require any new laws to be passed by Congress. Obama can simply invoke this with an executive order, then demand the FBI and ATF begin to immediately enforce this new regulation, even if it is utterly unconstitutional.