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Dominoes continue to fall. Fresh allegations of Domestic Spying in NY Times

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posted on Aug, 10 2013 @ 11:52 PM
reply to post by JBA2848

Thanks for taking an interest in this. I guess I will add any information I find concerning the NSA to this thread instead of starting a new one or adding to other people's in a massive way. I found a fantastic article about the NSA and companies relationships from Bloomberg ( in full disclosure Greenwald mentioned it in the Email article).

First a bit more about email.

From Lavabits founder.

"I’m taking a break from email,” said Levison. “If you knew what I know about email, you might not use it either.”

Further from the Forbes article...

Ladar Levison, 32, has spent ten years building encrypted email service Lavabit, attracting over 410,000 users. When NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden was revealed to be one of those users in July, Dallas-based Lavabit got a surge of new customers: $12,000 worth of paid subscribers, triple his usual monthly sign-up. On Thursday, though, Levison pulled the plug on his company, posting a cryptic message about a government investigation that would force him to “become complicit in crimes against the American people” were he to stay in business. Many people have speculated that the investigation concerned the government trying to get access to the email of Edward Snowden, who has been charged with espionage. There are legal restrictions which prevent Levison from being more specific about a protest of government methods that has forced him to shutter his company, an unprecedented move. “This is about protecting all of our users, not just one in particular. It’s not my place to decide whether an investigation is just, but the government has the legal authority to force you to do things you’re uncomfortable with,” said Levison in a phone call on Friday. “The fact that I can’t talk about this is as big a problem as what they asked me to do.”

I guess even more than the surveillance to me what scares me is the idea if secret courts operating under secret laws and forcing private companies to become complacent in "crimes against the American people". Don't get me wrong the whole thing is incredibly troubling and as I touched on there are some very serious issues at work here.

Now for the really good Bloomberg article. I have wondered about many of the things this article points out..the relationship between private companies and the surveillance state.

Imagine the government passed a law requiring all citizens to carry a tracking device. Such a law would immediately be found unconstitutional. Yet we all carry mobile phones. If the National Security Agency required us to notify it whenever we made a new friend, the nation would rebel. Yet we notify Facebook Inc. (FB) If the Federal Bureau of Investigation demanded copies of all our conversations and correspondence, it would be laughed at. Yet we provide copies of our e-mail to Google Inc. (GOOG), Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) or whoever our mail host is; we provide copies of our text messages to Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), AT&T Inc. (T) and Sprint Corp. (S); and we provide copies of other conversations to Twitter Inc., Facebook, LinkedIn (LNKD) Corp. or whatever other site is hosting them. The primary business model of the Internet is built on mass surveillance, and our government’s intelligence-gathering agencies have become addicted to that data. Understanding how we got here is critical to understanding how we undo the damage. Computers and networks inherently produce data, and our constant interactions with them allow corporations to collect an enormous amount of intensely personal data about us as we go about our daily lives. Sometimes we produce this data inadvertently simply by using our phones, credit cards, computers and other devices. Sometimes we give corporations this data directly on Google, Facebook, Apple Inc.’s iCloud and so on in exchange for whatever free or cheap service we receive from the Internet in return. The NSA is also in the business of spying on everyone, and it has realized it’s far easier to collect all the data from these corporations rather than from us directly. In some cases, the NSA asks for this data nicely. In other cases, it makes use of subtle threats or overt pressure. If that doesn’t work, it uses tools like national security letters.
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posted on Aug, 11 2013 @ 12:13 PM
Despite assurances to the contrary it appears there is a loophole which has allowed the NSA to scoop up Americans metadata. What a shocking turn of events.

The National Security Agency has a secret backdoor into its vast databases under a legal authority enabling it to search for US citizens' email and phone calls without a warrant, according to a top-secret document passed to the Guardian by Edward Snowden. The previously undisclosed rule change allows NSA operatives to hunt for individual Americans' communications using their name or other identifying information. Senator Ron Wyden told the Guardian that the law provides the NSA with a loophole potentially allowing "warrantless searches for the phone calls or emails of law-abiding Americans". The authority, approved in 2011, appears to contrast with repeated assurances from Barack Obama and senior intelligence officials to both Congress and the American public that the privacy of US citizens is protected from the NSA's dragnet surveillance programs. The intelligence data is being gathered under Section 702 of the of the Fisa Amendments Act (FAA), which gives the NSA authority to target without warrant the communications of foreign targets, who must be non-US citizens and outside the US at the point of collection.

Further in a just posted article 38 minutes ago...

Another burst of sunlight permeated the National Security Agency's black box of domestic surveillance last week. According to the New York Times, the NSA is searching the content of virtually every email that comes into or goes out of the United States without a warrant. To accomplish this astonishing invasion of Americans' privacy, the NSA reportedly is making a copy of nearly every international email. It then searches that cloned data, keeping all of the emails containing certain keywords and deleting the rest – all in a matter of seconds. If you emailed a friend, family member or colleague overseas today (or if, from abroad, you emailed someone in the US), chances are that the NSA made a copy of that email and searched it for suspicious information. The NSA appears to believe this general monitoring of our electronic communications is justified because the entire process takes, in one official's words, "a small number of seconds". Translation: the NSA thinks it can intercept and then read Americans' emails so long as the intrusion is swift, efficient and silent. That is not how the fourth amendment works.

I will say thank goodness we still have media somewhere that is not beholden to special interests or tools of the Govt. I fully expect The Guardian to get the Pulitzer Prize for Jounalism this year. No way CNN or Fox or CBS or ABC has the guts to follow a story like this.

There will be more devastating leaks in the near future.. I would bet large on that. I am looking into cryptography for my blog but can share what I find to some degree here if there is any interrest. I first got interested in Cryptography from the Neil Stephenson book Cryptonomicon. Very good book if you like that type of thing.

Cryptonomicon is a 1999 novel by American author Neal Stephenson. The novel follows the exploits of two groups of people in two different time periods, presented in alternating chapters. The first group is World War II-era Allied codebreakers and tactical-deception operatives affiliated with the Government Code and Cypher School at Bletchley Park, as well as disillusioned Axis military and intelligence figures whom they encounter. The second narrative is set in the late 1990s with descendants of the first narrative's characters employing cryptologic, telecom and computer technology to build an underground data haven in the fictional Sultanate of Kinakuta. Their goal is to facilitate anonymous Internet banking using electronic money and (later) digital gold currency, with a longer range objective to distribute Holocaust Education and Avoidance Pod (HEAP) media for instructing genocide-target populations on defensive warfare.
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posted on Aug, 12 2013 @ 03:15 PM
Der Spiegal is another good media source for the continued NSA fiasco. The US has assured Germany it is not spying on thier citizens. Sound familiar?

Germany is a special place for the NSA, in many respects. Few other countries are the source of as much data for US intelligence agencies, much of which comes from the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), Germany's foreign intelligence agency. At the same time Germany itself, despite all friendly assurances to the contrary, is also a target of the surveillance. According to a "secret" summary among the documents obtained by Snowden, which SPIEGEL was able to view, Germany is one of the targets of US espionage activity.

More information from later in the article..

The report reflects the ambivalent relationship the United States has with many countries. On the one hand, intelligence agencies cooperate with one another and exchange information. On the other hand, Washington spies on many countries, at least to some extent. Only the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand -- referred to as the "five eyes," together with the United States -- are seen as true friends, largely off-limits in terms of espionage, and with which there is an open exchange of information.

I am not sure how much credibility the US has worldwide with the continued denials of spying only to be shown weeks or days afterwards to basically be what I consider to be outright lies. Germany is an ally and their equivalent of the NSA known as BND has been very cooperative over the years with "Intelligence efforts". I find it alarming the US apparently thinks so little of our Domestic Law and so little of relationships with allies that it has gone ahead with surveillance at any cost. Obviously there will be repercussions be it immediately or years down the road.

As I stated earlier lying to Congres is as much a crime as what they are trying Snowden in the media over. I think without a doubt both Clapper and Alexander have lied to Congress and must be held to the same laws as anyone else.

Lying to Congress is an extremely serious offense, although few have been found guilty. Roger Clemens was indicted for lying to Congress (but ultimately found innocent of perjury). Many of the cases of individuals convicted of lying to Congress arose from Watergate, including President Nixon's Attorney General, John Mitchell, and Nixon's Chief of staff, H.R Haldeman. Executive officials can be impeached for "treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors." As a non-criminal matter, there are serious grounds to argue that lying to Congress is among the most severe potential "high crimes and misdemeanors." Lying to a grand jury was the grounds for President Clinton's impeachment; and that was lying to a grand jury, not lying to Congress when Congress is the relevant oversight branch. Furthermore, lying to Congress while Congress is performing oversight impedes a Congressional inquiry and investigation; Clinton's lying to a grand jury did not impede Congressional functioning. This may be a poor example, because many disagreed with Clinton's impeachment. The point is only that Clapper's statement rises to or even exceeds previous standards for impeachment. (Impeachment is the House essentially "indicting" an Executive official which would require the Senate to convict for ultimate removal.)

Washington, D.C. — Today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder requesting that the Department of Justice (DOJ) investigate Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, Jr. for lying to Congress. Contrary to what Director Clapper told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, the National Security Agency (NSA) does, in fact, collect data on Americans, as documents disclosed by former NSA contractor Edward J. Snowden demonstrate.

Contempt of Congress is the act of obstructing the work of the United States Congress or one of its committees. Historically the bribery of a senator or representative was considered contempt of Congress. In modern times, contempt of Congress has generally applied to the refusal to comply with a subpoena issued by a Congressional committee or subcommittee — usually seeking to compel either testimony or the production of documents.

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posted on Aug, 12 2013 @ 04:12 PM

Originally posted by gotya
No offense OP.

To be honest I'm getting tired of this spying stuff.

Okay. They are spying.

The Horse is Dead why beat it, there are better things to beat.

I have noted the winky face so I'm assuming your post is in jest, but I'll reply as if it weren't due to the fact that I know many people truly feel the way your post says you do.

Say your mother was kidnapped by an evil man. Say this evil man continually was raping your mother over and over again. She keeps calling you on the phone asking for your help, and you say "to be honest I'm getting tired of all this rape stuff, the dude us raping you, big deal, please let me go on with watching American idol and goofing around on facebook instead of dealing with the real problems in the world"

Your mother is America and the rapist is the federal government For those too sleepy to follow.
edit on 12-8-2013 by James1982 because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 12 2013 @ 04:20 PM

Originally posted by gotya

Originally posted by ShadowLink
reply to post by gotya

So you're aware of it, hear about it everywhere and you're "Ok" with it or just sick of hearing about it?

Don't you think it's ridiculous?
Don't you think it's illegal?
Don't you think it goes against everyones rights? Including Non-americans.
Don't you think something should be done about it?
Don't you think someone should be held responsible for the complete violation of practically everyone?

I'm guessing people like you are why these things continue, and right out in the open in our faces no less.

I'm not okay with it but stating the obvious doesn't solve a problem.

Example... there is a leaky pipe. Fine we can all see the pipe is leaking. If we all say the pipe is leaking it won't fix the leak.

If there is a leaky pipe you call a plumber. If the government is spying you........

(I fixed the pipe.)

Your analogy is incomplete.

Say you lived in a house with 10 people, and you had the basement bedroom. The pipes leak and flood your bedroom on a regular basis. You keep telling your roomates that the pipe should get fixed, but they don't believe you. Half of your roomates think you are lying about the leaky pipe, and crazy to even suggest something as ridiculous as a leaky pipe! The other half admit the pipe is leaky, but don't care that your bedroom is being destroyed by water damage.

This is where STATING THE OBVIOUS DOES HELP. When faced with ignorance the only weapon is knowledge, and this weapon must be brought down hard on every single man woman and child in this country. Then you'll find out who your true countrymen and woman are. Those who admit you have a leaky pipe but don't care your bedroom is ruined are not good roomates. Just like those who admit to the government's misdeeds but don't have a problem with it are not good countrymen, and not good Americans.

Additionally repeating the truth over and over fights the miniscule attention span of your typical American. Old bob and darlene hear something about NSA spying once or twice and their feeble minds reject something so worrying. Repeat it over and over and over again and eventually they will be forced to realize the truth.

Those who defend the despotic actions of governments should take heed of history. EVERY government falls PERIOD. And when they fall, them and their supporters will be torn apart like carrion.

posted on Aug, 13 2013 @ 04:59 AM
Glenn Greenwald has another new article about the NSA. Specifically this time he is going after Gen. Hayden who has been the mouthpiece of the NSA since these leaks first became public. The fact the US media is not reporting the details behind him are disturbing to say the least.

In 2006, the New York Times won the Pulitzer Prize for having revealed that the NSA was eavesdropping on Americans without warrants. The reason that was a scandal was because it was illegal under a 30-year-old law that made it a felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison for each offense, to eavesdrop on Americans without those warrants. Although both the Bush and Obama DOJs ultimately prevented final adjudication by raising claims of secrecy and standing, and the "Look Forward, Not Backward (for powerful elites)" Obama DOJ refused to prosecute the responsible officials, all three federal judges to rule on the substance found that domestic spying to be unconstitutional and in violation of the statute. The person who secretly implemented that illegal domestic spying program was retired Gen. Michael Hayden, then Bush's NSA director. That's the very same Michael Hayden who is now frequently presented by US television outlets as the authority and expert on the current NSA controversy - all without ever mentioning the central role he played in overseeing that illegal warrantless eavesdropping program. As Marcy Wheeler noted: "the 2009 Draft NSA IG Report that Snowden leaked [and the Guardian published] provided new details about how Hayden made the final decision to continue the illegal wiretapping program even after DOJ's top lawyers judged it illegal in 2004. Edward Snowden leaked new details of Michael Hayden's crime."

Further from the article.. Greenwald says

But inviting Hayden to do exactly that is what establishment media outlets do continually. Just yesterday, Face the Nation featured Hayden as the premiere guest to speak authoritatively about how trustworthy the NSA is, how safe it keeps us, and how wise President Obama is for insisting that all of its programs continue. As usual, no mention was made of the role he played in secretly implementing an illegal warrantless spying program aimed directly at the American people. As most establishment media figures do when quivering in the presence of national security state officials, the supremely sycophantic TV host Bob Schieffer treated Hayden like a visiting dignitary in his living room and avoided a single hard question.

From the Pulitzer Prize winning article in NY Times.

WASHINGTON, Dec. 15 - Months after the Sept. 11 attacks, President Bush secretly authorized the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on Americans and others inside the United States to search for evidence of terrorist activity without the court-approved warrants ordinarily required for domestic spying, according to government officials. Under a presidential order signed in 2002, the intelligence agency has monitored the international telephone calls and international e-mail messages of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people inside the United States without warrants over the past three years in an effort to track possible "dirty numbers" linked to Al Qaeda, the officials said. The agency, they said, still seeks warrants to monitor entirely domestic communications.

Again my feelings are the US citizens were too apathetic at this juncture to do anything significant about it and it has cost us dearly in the following 8 years.

On some level you have to wonder why no one in the US media seems to on top of this story and why the hard questions are not being asked. I feel like the media here are far too beholden to corporations and the cozy relationship it must establish with the Govt. Why are the hard hitting articles only coming from The Guardian or Der Spiegal and even Brazilian papers.. ?

As for the reforms promised by Obama.?

Yesterday's Washington Post provides a clue.. ( yes I realize what I just said about American news outlets)

President Obama’s message about the government’s massive electronic surveillance programs came through loud and clear: Get over it. The president used more soothing words in his pre-vacation news conference Friday, but that was the gist. With perhaps the application of a fig leaf here and a sheen of legalistic mumbo jumbo there, the snooping will continue. Unless, of course, we demand that it end. The modest reforms Obama proposed do not begin to address the fundamental question of whether we want the National Security Agency to log all of our phone calls and read at least some of our e-mails, relying on secret judicial orders from a secret court for permission. The president indicated he is willing to discuss how all this is done — but not whether.

The Who "Won't get fooled Again"

I'll move myself and my family aside If we happen to be left half alive I'll get all my papers and smile at the sky For I know that the hypnotized never lie Do ya? There's nothing in the street Looks any different to me And the slogans are replaced, by-the-bye And the parting on the left Is now the parting on the right And the beards have all grown longer overnight I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday Then I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again No, no! YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Meet the new boss Same as the old boss

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posted on Aug, 14 2013 @ 12:54 PM
I get the feeling no one is really reading this thread anymore. It still allows me to keep my thoughts and links together in one place and not to intrude too much in other people's threads. Last entry I discussed Gen. Hayden a bit. The guy who ran the NSA during the Bush administration and was responsible for expanding many of the programs we are not discussing. Hayden expanded these programs despite lawyers at the NSA telling him they were illegal. Against thier advice and best council in other words and after Bush supposedly had stopped the surveillance of Americans. It is now easy to say that he was lying and had no intention of shutting or slowing down anything of the sort. The programs grew basically unchecked for many different reasons. Not sharing the actual facts with Congress... Or outright lying to Congress.. Or the general apathy of the American Public.

This should come as no shock.

The former head of the National Security Agency said Sunday that not only does ending the NSA’s domestic surveillance programs seems unlikely, but he images those endeavors could expand in scope during the coming years. Former NSA chief Michael Hayden told television host Bob Schieffer of CBS’ Face the Nation over the weekend that the current program that collects the metadata of millions of American phone customers on a regular basis for the United States government could in the future perhaps be used to soak up even more statistics about US citizens.

There was a great article yesterday about an American Journalist who is at the center of the Snowden leaks and what she has gone through over the years. Pretty scary stuff to be real.

This past January, Laura Poitras received a curious e-mail from an anonymous stranger requesting her public encryption key. For almost two years, Poitras had been working on a documentary about surveillance, and she occasionally received queries from strangers. She replied to this one and sent her public key — allowing him or her to send an encrypted e-mail that only Poitras could open, with her private key — but she didn’t think much would come of it. The stranger responded with instructions for creating an even more secure system to protect their exchanges. Promising sensitive information, the stranger told Poitras to select long pass phrases that could withstand a brute-force attack by networked computers. “Assume that your adversary is capable of a trillion guesses per second,” the stranger wrote. Before long, Poitras received an encrypted message that outlined a number of secret surveillance programs run by the government. She had heard of one of them but not the others. After describing each program, the stranger wrote some version of the phrase, “This I can prove.” Seconds after she decrypted and read the e-mail, Poitras disconnected from the Internet and removed the message from her computer. “I thought, O.K., if this is true, my life just changed,” she told me last month. “It was staggering, what he claimed to know and be able to provide. I just knew that I had to change everything.”

Here is where it gets weird.

In June 2006, her tickets on domestic flights were marked “SSSS” — Secondary Security Screening Selection — which means the bearer faces extra scrutiny beyond the usual measures. She was detained for the first time at Newark International Airport before boarding a flight to Israel, where she was showing her film. On her return flight, she was held for two hours before being allowed to re-enter the country. The next month, she traveled to Bosnia to show the film at a festival there. When she flew out of Sarajevo and landed in Vienna, she was paged on the airport loudspeaker and told to go to a security desk; from there she was led to a van and driven to another part of the airport, then taken into a room where luggage was examined. “They took my bags and checked them,” Poitras said. “They asked me what I was doing, and I said I was showing a movie in Sarajevo about the Iraq war. And then I sort of befriended the security guy. I asked what was going on. He said: ‘You’re flagged. You have a threat score that is off the Richter scale. You are at 400 out of 400.’ I said, ‘Is this a scoring system that works throughout all of Europe, or is this an American scoring system?’ He said. ‘No, this is your government that has this and has told us to stop you.’ ” After 9/11, the U.S. government began compiling a terrorist watch list that was at one point estimated to contain nearly a million names. There are at least two subsidiary lists that relate to air travel. The no-fly list contains the names of tens of thousands of people who are not allowed to fly into or out of the country. The selectee list, which is larger than the no-fly list, subjects people to extra airport inspections and questioning. These lists have been criticized by civil rights groups for being too broad and arbitrary and for violating the rights of Americans who are on them.

Great article..
edit on 14-8-2013 by GArnold because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 20 2013 @ 02:27 PM
In addition to what I posted about Gen. Hayden I thought it would be appropriate to add this information

Michael Hayden, the former director of the National Security Agency, has invaded America’s television sets in recent weeks to warn about Edward Snowden’s leaks and the continuing terrorist threat to America. But what often goes unmentioned, as the Guardian’s Glenn Greenwald pointed out, is that Hayden has a financial stake in keeping Americans scared and on a permanent war footing against Islamist militants. And the private firm he works for, called the Chertoff Group, is not the only one making money by scaring Americans. Post-9/11 America has witnessed a boom in private firms dedicated to the hyped-up threat of terrorism. The drive to privatize America’s national security apparatus accelerated in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, and it’s gotten to the point where 70 percent of the national intelligence budget is now spent on private contractors, as author Tim Shorrock reported. The private intelligence contractors have profited to the tune of at least $6 billion a year. In 2010, the Washington Post revealed that there are 1,931 private firms across the country dedicated to fighting terrorism.

There are many companies who are making money hand over fist by keeping you scared. The fact Hayden's connections to the Chertoff Group is disrupting and disengenious. The Media here are owned by special interests. Seek out media not beholden to them. Al-Jazerra America is a good example. They do not need advertising revenue. The Guardian has suffered much but seems to be up to the fight ahead.

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