Showing posts with label 4th Amendment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 4th Amendment. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Queens of Stalingrad - 8

Protesters as Blair, Bush II, & Brown (AP/Lefteris Pitarakis)
This series is about the madness that has infected the U.S. and other governments.

Another aspect of this series is the attempts to treat the illness of the U.S. government in the courts.

There are several Dredd Blog series that overlap some of the subject matter of this series new readers might also be interested in (e.g. A Tale of Coup Cities, Will The Military Become The Police?, Epigovernment: The New Model, The Germ Theory of Government, American Feudalism - 6).

For those who think Dredd Blog is a wee bit radical, check out some quotes from a journalist that gives this blog a run for its money:
The black-clad fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, sweeping a collapsing army and terrified Iraqis before them as they advance toward Baghdad, reflect back to us the ghoulish face of American empire. They are the specters of the hundreds of thousands of people we murdered in our deluded quest to remake the Middle East. They are ghosts from the innumerable roadsides and villages where U.S. soldiers and Marines, jolted by explosions of improvised explosive devices, responded with indiscriminate fire. They are the risen remains of the dismembered Iraqis left behind by blasts of Hellfire and cruise missiles, howitzers, grenade launchers and drone strikes. They are the avengers of the gruesome torture and the sexual debasement that often came with being detained by American troops. They are the final answer to the collective humiliation of an occupied country, the logical outcome of Shock and Awe, the Frankenstein monster stitched together from the body parts we left scattered on the ground. They are what we get for the $4 trillion we wasted on the Iraq War.

The language of violence engenders violence. The language of hate engenders hate. “I and the public know what all schoolchildren learn,” W.H. Auden wrote. “Those to whom evil is done do evil in return.” It is as old as the Bible.
...
We are not, as we thought when we entered Iraq, the omnipotent superpower able in a swift and brutal stroke to bend a people to our will. We are something else. Fools and murderers. Blinded by hubris. Faded relics of the Cold War. And now, in the final act of the play, we are crawling away. Our empire is dying.
(Goulish Empire, by Chris Hedges, emphasis added). There is little if anything that can be done to change what the warmongers among us did to Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya.

There might be something we could change about the fact that we are committing suicide slowly, just as the empires of the past have done, after they poisoned themselves with the toxins of power:
"In other words, a society does not ever die 'from natural causes', but always dies from suicide or murder --- and nearly always from the former, as this chapter has shown." - A Study of History, by Arnold J. Toynbee

"It is forbidden to kill therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets." -Voltaire

"If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy." - James Madison
(Dredd Blog Quotes Page). Both tyranny and oppression have been brought to this land in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.

This has clearly been shown by Dredd Blog in this series and others (see e.g. Dredd Blog Series Posts).

Court cases have not yet corrected the mad infection (see e.g. ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller).

But there is one ray of hope to share with readers today.

A federal district court judge has ruled that the "no-fly list" is applied in a manner that denies constitutional rights:
When prescreening passengers, Congress instructed the Executive to "establish a procedure to enable airline passengers, who are delayed or prohibited from boarding a flight because the advanced passenger prescreening system determined that they might pose a security threat, to appeal such determination and correct information contained in the system." ... As discussed herein at length, the DHS TRIP process does not provide a meaningful mechanism for travelers who have been denied boarding to correct erroneous information in the government's terrorism databases. A traveler who has not been given any indication of the information that may be in the record does not have any way to correct that information. As a result, the DHS TRIP process "entirely fail[s] to consider an important aspect" of Congress's instructions with respect to travelers denied boarding because they are on the No-Fly List.
(Latif v Holder, p. 63, PDF). Remember that a prominent member of the Senate, Ted Kennedy, was placed on the no-fly list (Sen. Kennedy Flagged by No-Fly List).

The craziness has spread far and wide, and will take years of effort just to get back to where we were just before the ill-conceived "war on terror" infected foreign and domestic policy, taking us deeper into American Feudalism.

The previous post in this series is here.

Interview of Senator Bob Graham (Real News):



Thursday, June 12, 2014

Warrantless Searches - Unreasonable - 2

In the first post of this series we considered Arizona v Gant, 556 U.S. 332 (2009).

That Supreme Court case affirmed an Arizona state appellate court's opinion that a warrantless search was unconstitutional under the circumstances of that case.

In today's post we consider a case of first impression in the Eleventh Circuit Federal Court of Appeals, which held a portion of a federal statute to be unconstitutional under the Fourth Amendment:
Davis’s Fourth Amendment argument raises issues of first impression in this circuit, and not definitively decided elsewhere in the country. The evidence at issue consists of records obtained from cell phone service providers pursuant to the Stored Communications Act (“SCA”), 18 U.S.C. §§ 2703(c) and (d). Under that Act, the government can obtain from providers of electronic communication service records of subscriber services when the government has obtained either a warrant, § 2703(c)(A), or, as occurred in this case, a court order under subsection (d), see § 2703(c)(B). The order under subsection (d) does not require the government to show probable cause.
...
Davis objected to the admission of the location information in the district court and now argues to us that the obtaining of that evidence violated his constitutional rights under the Fourth Amendment. That Amendment, of course, provides that “no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or Affirmation . . . .” U.S. CONST. AMEND. IV. It is a “basic principle of Fourth Amendment law” that searches and seizures without a warrant “are presumptively unreasonable.” See, e.g., Groh v. Ramirez, 540 U.S. 551, 559 (2004). The SCA does provide for governmental entities requiring records from communication service providers by warrant under subsection (c)(A). However, as noted above, the prosecution obtained the evidence against Davis, not by warrant under subsection (c)(A), but by order under subsection (d). As further noted above, that section does not require probable cause, but only a showing “that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the . . . records or other information sought, are relevant and material to an ongoing criminal investigation.” 18 U.S.C. § 2703(d) (emphasis added).
...
Therefore, it cannot be denied that the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures shields the people from the warrantless interception of electronic data or sound waves carrying communications. The next step of analysis, then, is to inquire whether that protection covers not only content, but also the transmission itself when it reveals information about the personal source of the transmission, specifically his location.
...
Having determined that the privacy theory of Fourth Amendment protection governs this controversy, we conclude that the appellant correctly asserts that the government’s warrantless gathering of his cell site location information violated his reasonable expectation of privacy. The government argues that the gathering of cell site location information is factually distinguishable from the GPS data at issue in Jones. We agree that it is distinguishable; however, we believe the distinctions operate against the government’s case rather than in favor of it.
...
In short, we hold that cell site location information is within the subscriber’s reasonable expectation of privacy. The obtaining of that data without a warrant is a Fourth Amendment violation.
(U.S. v Davis, 11th Cir., June 11, 2014, emphasis added). This may go to the en banc court, but I doubt it.

More than likely it will go up to the Supreme Court directly from the three judge panel's unanimous decision.

See also: ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 8

The previous post in this series is here.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Queens of Stalingrad - 7

Secretary of the Surveillance State
Are the democrats taking up the cause of the Stasi ("One of its main tasks was spying on the population")?

This status quo or worse -backwards- bureaucrat supports the military NSA spying on all Americans and any other people of the world it wants to.

Got fascism?

One wonders why --since he is not running, as far as we know, in the t-bagger infested Republican primaries.

The only take-away from his calling whistleblower Ed Snowden a "coward and a traitor" for exposing the military government's spying on all Americans all of the time (in a manner that the fascist Stasi would have drooled over) is that power corrupts (About Toxins Of Power).

He has morphed and atrophied from a Vietnam era whistleblower who once did the same thing while in uniform:
After returning to the United States, Kerry joined the Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW). Then numbering about 20,000, VVAW was considered by some (including the administration of President Richard Nixon) to be an effective, if controversial, component of the antiwar movement. Kerry participated in the "Winter Soldier Investigation" conducted by VVAW of U.S. atrocities in Vietnam, and he appears in a film by that name that documents the investigation. According to Nixon Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird, "I
You've come a long way Bybee
didn't approve of what he did, but I understood the protesters quite well", and he declined two requests from the Navy to court martial Reserve Lieutenant Kerry over his antiwar activity.

On April 22, 1971, Kerry became the first Vietnam veteran to testify before Congress about the war, when he appeared before a Senate committee hearing on proposals relating to ending the war. He was still a member of the United States Navy Reserve, holding the rank of Lieutenant Junior Grade.

The day after this testimony, Kerry participated in a demonstration with thousands of other veterans in which he and other veterans threw their medals and ribbons over a fence erected at the front steps of the United States Capitol building to dramatize their opposition to the war. Jack Smith, a Marine, read a statement explaining why the veterans were returning their military awards to the government.
(Wikipedia, emphasis added). Yes indeed, new circuitry has replaced the old whistleblower circuitry in his cultural amygdala, as the nation's leadership degenerates across the board (Hypothesis: The Cultural Amygdala - 4).

He once protested, as he should have, that millions of civilian Vietnamese where killed or maimed by those destroying them in order to save them:
The title is taken from an order given to the U.S. forces who slaughtered more than 500 Vietnamese civilians in the notorious My Lai massacre of 1968. Drawing on interviews in Vietnam and a trove of previously unknown U.S. government documents — including internal military investigations of alleged war crimes in Vietnam — Turse argues that U.S. atrocities in Vietnam were not just isolated incidents, but "the inevitable outcome of deliberate policies, dictated at the highest levels of the military."
...
Americans have long been taught that events such as the notorious My Lai massacre were isolated incidents in the Vietnam War, carried out by "a few bad apples." But as award‑winning journalist and historian Nick Turse demonstrates in this groundbreaking investigation, violence against Vietnamese noncombatants was not at all exceptional during the conflict. Rather, it was pervasive and systematic, the predictable consequence of orders to "kill anything that moves."

Drawing on more than a decade of research in secret Pentagon files and extensive interviews with American veterans and Vietnamese survivors, Turse reveals for the first time how official policies resulted in millions of innocent civilians killed and wounded. In shocking detail, he lays out the workings of a military machine that made crimes in almost every major American combat unit all but inevitable.
(The Virgin MOMCOM - 6). So which is it now --"it is ok if we do it" ... "we were only following orders" or "we are above the law as exceptionalists"?

No wonder the most successful pollster is putting the odds on the democrats losing the Senate and staying the minority in the House.

The NBC newscaster Brian Williams did a good job of neutrality when he interviewed Ed Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, and Laura Poitras (Inside the Mind of Edward Snowden).

The mindless jargon on the administration is not at all phased by its fascist wrongs of becoming spying sickos on steroids, it is only pissed that it got caught.

That is some legacy for you Obama, Kerry, Feinstein, and the other so-called democrats who want to outdo the t-party wing nuts.

Daniel Ellsberg, who Kerry mentioned in his mad rant against Snowden, says:
"As for Kerry saying that -- I'd say a man that I once admired, that was a long time ago -- the statement that he made on [MSNBC] that Edward Snowden is a coward, a traitor, and he betrayed his country is one of the most despicable statements I have heard from a politician or anyone else who I can remember. It is very much to his discredit and I think very much the less of him."
(Huffinton Post). It is time for Secretary Kerry to apologize for such t-bagger McCarthy-ism type commentary and discourse.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

Meanwhile, war criminals are too big to jail:



Thursday, May 15, 2014

ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 11

Bush II exclaimed that those who were not with him were against him, and that they could run but they could not hide.

Now the military NSA is on the run but they cannot hide either, since their hostility to America is out now.

Glenn Greenwald  has released a book concerning the beginning of his relationship with Ed Snowden.

Interestingly, it also contains the details of how it almost did not commence (Snowden’s Story, Behind the Scenes, Tomgram: Glenn Greenwald, How I Met Edward Snowden).

Meanwhile, in one of the lawsuits the Greenwald - Snowden whistleblower journalism relationship generated, the case this series is about, has a new event to consider, which is that the ACLU has filed its final Reply Brief in the case on appeal (ACLU Appeal Reply Brief).

The government position in the case:
In two significant but almost-completely overlooked legal briefs filed last week, the US government defended the constitutionality of the Fisa Amendments Act, the controversial 2008 law that codified the Bush administration's warrantless-wiretapping program. That law permits the government to monitor Americans' international communications without first obtaining individualized court orders or establishing any suspicion of wrongdoing.

It's hardly surprising that the government believes the 2008 law is constitutional – government officials advocated for its passage six years ago, and they have been vigorously defending the law ever since. Documents made public over the last eleven-and-a-half months by the Guardian and others show that the NSA has been using the law aggressively.

What's surprising – even remarkable – is what the government says on the way to its conclusion. It says, in essence, that the Constitution is utterly indifferent to the NSA's large-scale surveillance of Americans' international telephone calls and emails:
The privacy rights of US persons in international communications are significantly diminished, if not completely eliminated, when those communications have been transmitted to or obtained from non-US persons located outside the United States.
That phrase – "if not completely eliminated" – is unusually revealing. Think of it as the Justice Department's twin to the NSA's "collect it all".
(Guardian). Those who cannot see that various coup events, in both domestic and foreign policy, have taken place, in recent U.S. History, likely never will (see e.g. A Tale of Coup Cities - 11, A Tale of Coup Cities - 2).

Somewhat related is some news that a new organization is starting up (CFAPA), an online .org which launches with the purpose of perpetuating a free citizen's press in America (Free Press Activism).

The previous post in this series is here.



Monday, April 21, 2014

A Tale of Coup Cities - 11

Subtitle: "When You Are Governed by Anarchists."

It is a plague upon the people and the nation that the officials of government do not obey the supreme law of the land.

Especially when they do so publicly after they take an oath to obey, protect, and uphold that supreme law.

The U.S. Constitution is most abused by the officials of government because they immediately, upon taking the oath, proceed to defend foreign interests and anything else other than what they vowed by taking the oath which does not say that they will protect and defend the nation, the people, or themselves, rather, it says:
I, [name], 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.
(5 U.S.C. §3331, emphasis added). The oath that the president takes is similar, to wit:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.
(Article II, Section I, Clause 8; Constitution, emphasis added). The reason these oaths are taken may not be so obvious to some (especially many who take it).

That reason is: to the extent that the constitution is damaged, diminished, or demised, is the extent to which the government, the nation, and the people are damaged, diminished, or demised.

The beginning of terrorism is anarchy against the constitution which was designed for the people (The Common Good, Racial History).

This series and others have chronicled how an ongoing coup has slowly overthrown the people's government to slowly replace it with a rogue Epigovernment; slowly putting a plutocracy in its place (A Tale of Coup Cities - 2Epigovernment: The New Model, American Feudalism - 6, The Homeland: Big Brother Plutonomy - 8, Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy).

A closing quote:
"For those who work for a living the level of inequality in the U.S. is probably higher than in any other society at any time in the past, anywhere in the world ..."
(Capital, a book by Thomas Piketty, see video below).

The previous post in this series is here.

On the Plutocracy (they mistakenly call it "oligarchy") - Krugman, Moyers


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 10

Military NSA headquarters
Regular readers know that we have been taking note of various lawsuits against the military NSA secret and untreated habit of spying on all Americans (ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller).

The ACLU v Clapper case was filed in a federal district court in New York.

As it turns out, that case was eventually dismissed by the federal district court judge in New York, thereafter it was appealed to the Federal Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 8).

Since this series began, the world has pretty much turned against the military NSA, not because of the case, but because of the odious nature of the military NSA (ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 9).

The ACLU has already filed its opening brief in the appellate court (Brief PDF).

Now the military NSA has filed its reply brief (Brief PDF).

Here is a page that has all of the ACLU v Clapper documents in this case.

If we lose in that appellate court, it is likely to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

If we lose there, we are in very dire straits indeed.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

Dire Straits




Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Queens of Stalingrad - 6

Headquarters of The Vassal Spies
Oversight, like elections, is one of the ways of accountability that has fallen by the traditional American wayside.

Yes, fallen like other relics of a once constitutional democracy.

A once constitutional democracy which has financially descended into a plutocracy (The Homeland: Big Brother Plutonomy).

A once constitutional democracy that has politically descended into a police-surveillance imperialist state through one policy coup after another over the years (American Feudalism - 6, A Tale of Coup Cities - 9).

The Senate committee which is supposed to oversee spy activities was shocked to find they were being spied on too.

They had not flinched when it was only American citizens who were being spied on, but lo and behold when they found out that they, the bosses, too were being spied upon they experienced what the 99% have been experiencing.

According to Rolling Stone, Diane Feinstein, Chair of the oversight committee, made some shocking, out of character for her, statements about the matter:
1. The initial 2009 Intelligence Committee review found that the CIA had misled Congress about its torture program.
...
2. When the Intelligence Committee launched a full-fledged investigation into what Senator Feinstein describes as the "the horrible details of a CIA program that never, never, never should have existed," the CIA unleashed documents as if it were trying to bury needles in a haystack.
...
3. In violation of written agreements about the handling of documents, the CIA secretly removed documents that had originally been provided to investigators, and then lied when its actions were detected, saying the order to take back the documents had come from the Obama administration.
...
4. Included in the document dump was an something called the "Internal Panetta Review" – evidently an in-agency summary of the torture program for then-CIA chief Leon Panetta, that many in the agency did not want the Senate to see.
...
5. The Intelligence Committee's investigation into the "Detention and Interrogation Program of the CIA" does not stop with the Bush White House, and delves deeply into the signature foreign policy achievement of the Obama presidency.
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6. The 6,300-page Senate report is complete. The CIA has read it and disputes "important parts of it." However, many of the disputed claims are, in fact, backed up by the CIA's own Internal Panetta Review.
...
7. Distrust is so high between the CIA and the committee that the committee removed an appropriately redacted summary of the Panetta Review from a shared off-site location, and now keeps the document in a Senate safe.
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8. The CIA was so angered by the Senate having its hands on the Panetta Review that it spied on the work of its Senate overseers.
...
9. Director Brennan is stonewalling Senator Feinstein's inquiry into this spying.
...
10. Feinstein believes the CIA's actions may not only have broken several laws but violated the Fourth Amendment and the constitution's separation of powers.
...
11. Senator Feinstein is battling to have the Intelligence Committee's findings declassified. She believes she has the backing of the White House and that the details will shock America into never again permitting such a torture program.
(Jaw-Dropping Lines From Dianne Feinstein). Criticism directed toward her was not that what she is saying is wrong.

Rather, that criticism is about her not caring when it was being done to the 99%, but she does care now when it is being done to her (Ok to spy on Americans, Not Congress).

Thus, according to some who watch closely, the CIA can use the results of her lack of oversight for years now, to try to drive a wedge between her and others she will now need as allies (Where the Bodies Are Buried).

The policy coup that General Clarke spoke about is sometimes hidden only in plain sight (A Tale of Coup Cities - 2).

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Today We Fight Back

[On 2/11/14] a  pop-up at the bottom of the page on most browsers will provide a way for you to make a call, or to send an email to relevant members of congress.

This in effect supports several ongoing legislative efforts to curtail the rogue activities of the military NSA.

Click on the strip or the "^" character, at the bottom right on the strip, for an enlargement of the pop-up and with fill-in boxes for your relevant information.

Dredd Blog saves none of the information, and a privacy statement is included in the pop-up for your perusal.

The process is being handled by: The Day We Fight Back, so go there to find answers to any questions you may have, or if you want to place this on your website or blog.

Most Americans want the military NSA to be reined in and put back in their proper place in American society.

Your participation will help move us in that direction.

Yesterday's post which has more links and information is here.

UPDATE:  As of 2/16/14 @ 4:00 AM Central Time, the count was 90,273 CALLS PLACED 187,620 EMAILS SENT (a total of 277,893 messages sent to congress) ... Guardian Report .... its Not too late to participate

Thursday, January 30, 2014

A Great Danger to America From The Islamic World: Coffee Houses

Which way to the Coffee House?
I have been reading the posts concerning a trial of the Occupy / NATO 3 which is being monitored by Kevin Gosztola at the Dissenter (NATO 3).

I had also read a post at 3QuarksDaily entitled How The Islamic World Gave Us Coffee Houses and Democracy.

So, the testimony of one of the Chicago Police Department undercover operatives (a.k.a. "domestic spy") caught my attention specifically because her testimony on the witness stand was about their spy techniques which they employ against citizens, even though they have no evidence or probable cause to spy on those citizens.

Except that those citizens happen to frequent coffee houses, and that particular type of Café.

Those Coffee House Cafés which are known for several hundred years now to harbor certain undesirables (wink, wink).

So, I could not resist making the following comment there:
She was to go undercover to 'gather intelligence' at coffee shops” – Kevin Gosztola

This spying on coffee houses is an ancient practice that goes back to the origin of coffee in the Islamic world, long before it made its subversive way to the West:
Douglas defends coffee by comparing its use in Europe to its history in the East. “The first publick Coffee-Houses,” he explains, were “from the beginning very little different from what it is in London and Paris at this day.” Oriental coffeehouses welcomed “persons of all ranks,” from students to “the Officers of the Seraglio … and others of the First Quality.” The coffeehouse gave all men the “opportunity of discoursing on all manner of subjects, without the least ceremony or constraint.” A place for entertainment, conversation, and debate, the coffeehouses fostered a new kind of sociability that threatened religious and political authority. Douglas celebrates their intellectual edge, observing that the coffee-drinking Sufis enjoyed “great Alacrity and Freedom of the Mind.” Coffeehouses were information exchanges where patrons discussed news, carried on business, and learned about the latest developments in art and science. Unsurprisingly, Douglas dismisses complaints about coffeehouses as “a great deal of noise and useless railing.” In a conspicuous swipe at Charles II’s attempt to close down London’s coffeehouses, Douglas recounts how “the Liberty” of the Ottoman coffeehouses led a Grand Vizier to disguise himself and secretly investigate them. He discovered “Men of Gravity and Character discoursing seriously concerning the Affairs of the Empire, blaming the Ministry, and deciding freely concerning things of the greatest importance. He had been likewise to visit the taverns, where he met only with People singing, or talking of their amours and warlike Exploits … and therefore he allow’d the Taverns to continue.” A King of England who tried to shut down coffeehouses, Douglas contends, would be acting like a tyrannical sultan.
(How the Islamic World Gave Us Coffee and Democracy). “History repeats itself, and that’s one of the things that’s wrong with history”, said Clarence Darrow.
(Dredd Comment @ Dissenter). Little did the neophyte officer or the Chicago Police know that their escapades have been practiced by despots for hundreds of years.

What makes it especially ironic is that the ancestors of the phantom "terrorists of Islam" they were seeking out had created the vestiges of democracy in their coffee houses long, long ago.

The very vestiges of democracy which those ignorant officers purport to protect by their witless operations to destroy it.

The Chicago Police are so wannabe NSA (cf. the Heartland Café which the Chicago PD "saved the world" from).

UPDATE: The jury quickly acquitted the NATO 3 of all terrorism charges (Jury Acquits ‘NATO 3′ of All Terrorism Charges).

Friday, January 24, 2014

The Republican National Committee Gets Back To America

The White House of the NSA Stalinists
Now, if only Queen FineStain of The Queens of Stalingrad would wise up and stop yelling "Off With Their Heads."

And if only President Obama could see through the Stalinists that are advising him ... wrongfully.

Well, except for the members whom he appointed on the Privacy and Civil Rights Oversight Board who have ever so recently informed him that the military NSA is batshit crazy, and so is he for supporting their over-the-top, traitorous, unAmerican, and totally Orwellian madness on steroids.

The RNC overwhelmingly voted against these vile military NSA practices:
At it’s annual winter meeting on Friday, the Republican National Committee passed a resolution calling for an investigation into the National Security Agency’s domestic surveillance practices. Calling the practice a violation of the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment, the RNC passed the resolution by an “overwhelming majority.”

According to a report from TIME Magazine’s Zeke Miller, the “Resolution to Renounce the National Security Agency’s Surveillance Program” easily passed by just a voice vote.

The resolution “encourages Republican lawmakers to call for a special committee to investigate, report, and reveal to the public the extent of this domestic spying.”

It further declares that “the mass collection and retention of personal data is in itself contrary to the right of privacy protected by the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution.”
(RNC Passes Resolution Calling NSA Surveillance a Violation of 4th Amendment). They are on the correct side of this issue, and if the democrats don't figure that out, and figure it out quite quickly, then, here comes another ass kicking election a la 2010 this coming November.

And the democrats will take the ass-kicking.

I trust neither party, I am just sayin' ... if you know what I mean.

Have a good weekend.

OffNow!


Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Queens of Stalingrad - 5

America Strikes Back At The Coup
In this series we are taking a look at the domestic invasion of America by the military NSA.

We are also noting the subsequent domestic insurgency against the military NSA's traitorous invasion of the American people.

In the first post we took a look at the Queen Jane Approximately syndrome; in the second post we took a look at one of the founders of oppression in America, and at the soul of the ideology behind the invasion being conducted from within by the military NSA which he, J. Edgar Hoover, inspired by his traitorous examples; in the third post we looked at some of the voyeurism of the NSA invaders; and in the fourth post we began to detail some of the domestic insurgency, the push-back against the insubordinate invaders and the foreign ideology they seek to infect America with permanently.

Today, we will continue to detail the domestic insurgency that is fighting back against the coup which is in progress.

First off, there are movements in state legislative bodies that are designed to put a stop to the invasion by the military NSA, one state at a time:
The state-level effort to turn off water and electricity to the National Security Agency (NSA) got a major boost today as legislators in Tennessee introduced a bill to ban the state from providing material support to the federal agency.

A long-standing secretive NSA computing facility calls Oak Ridge home. According to NSA researcher James Bamford, the NSA runs most data it gathers “from code breaking to word captures,” through computers at Oak Ridge and NSA headquarters in Ft. Meade, Md.

The Tennessee Fourth Amendment Protection Act was introduced by State Sen. Stacey Campfield (R-Knoxville) late Tuesday evening. Rep. Andy Holt (R-Dresden) will file the companion bill in the House. [Tennessee bill takes on NSA encryption-breaking facility at Oak Ridge]
...
The state level campaign to turn off power and electricity to the NSA got a big boost Wednesday.

In a bipartisan effort, Washington became first state with a physical NSA location to consider the Fourth Amendment Protection Act,
NSA Headquarters
designed to make life extremely difficult for the massive spy agency.

Rep. David Taylor (R-Moxee) and Rep Rep. Luis Moscoso (D- Mountlake Terrace) introduced HB2272 late Tuesday night. Based on model language drafted by the OffNow coalition, it would make it the policy of Washington “to refuse material support, participation, or assistance to any federal agency which claims the power, or with any federal law, rule, regulation, or order which purports to authorize, the collection of electronic data or metadata of any person pursuant to any action not based on a warrant.”

Practically speaking, the bill prohibits state and local agencies from providing any material support to the NSA within their jurisdiction. This includes barring government-owned utilities from providing water and electricity. It makes information gathered without a warrant by the NSA and shared with law enforcement inadmissible in state court. It blocks public universities from serving as NSA research facilities or recruiting grounds. And it disincentivizes corporations attempting to fill needs not met in the absence of state cooperation. [Washington State Bill Proposes Criminalizing Help to NSA, Turning Off Resources to Yakima Facility]
In addition to these states, various bills in the U.S. Congress are also making their way around, bills that are designed to stop the coup in its tracks.

Likewise, one federal agency has called the invasion by the military NSA illegal:
The National Security Agency's practice of collecting and storing data on all phone calls is illegal and should be shut down – that's the conclusion of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, an independent executive branch agency. Its board members are empowered to investigate and analyze classified material. They're the latest independent voice to cast doubt on various NSA claims.

"In its report, the board lays out what may be the most detailed critique of the government’s once-secret legal theory behind the program," reports Charlie Savage of the New York Times, who obtained an advance copy.
(The Atlantic, emphasis added; cf. Guardian, Report, or Report PDF). This is not a partisan issue, it is an invasion-of-the-American-People issue.

For more information on the board see: Official Privacy and Civil Rights Oversight Board Website, ACLU: Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, Federal Register: Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, and Wikipedia: Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board.

Other example Dredd Blog series related to this issue: On The Origin of Security, ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 3, A Tale of Coup Cities - 7, Whistleblowers According To The Early Americans.

The five states which I think are likely to continue resisting the military NSA invasion with legislation, like that in Tennessee and Washington, are Oregon, California, Alaska, New Hampshire, and Maine (assuming they have NSA facilities in their state).

Support bills in your state which are designed to stop the invasion of the American people by the traitorous military NSA, or ask your state legislator to introduce one.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

OffNow!


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 9

NSA has "Balls Disease"
The case is going to the appellate courts now, so in the mean time let's take a look at what the world is saying about the military NSA.

You know, the military outfit that is spying on Americans, and on most other countries around the world.

Der Spiegel of Germany has published military NSA information that points out that the military NSA is dangerously bad to the bone (Inside TAO, NSA Spy Catalog).

For example they have technology that can and does monitor conversations taking place inside a room without any wiring or "bug" devices inside the room.

They do it with an energy beam (Equipment Info, cf. NSA Spy Catalog link above @ "Room Surveillance" red dot).

Here are more random links (maybe some repetition) to Der Spiegel pages about NSA spying capabilities:
Top NSA Hacking Unit ... Targeting Mexico ... NSA's Shadow Network ... Spy Gadgets for Every Need ... NSA Toolbox ... Tasking Techniques for the R&T Analyst ... QUANTUMTHEORY and related QUANTUM programs ... Details about the Man-On-The-Side with QUANTUM ... capabilities list ... GCHQ QUANTUMTHEORY capabilities list ... OLYMPUSFIRE ... An example of a vulnerable Apple user is shown ... 
See Wikipedia, Der Speigel for more information on Germany's "The Mirror" newspaper.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

A comment concerning the following video:
You must watch this talk, even if some parts are a bit technical for mere mortals. No matter how bad you think the NSA’s information surveillance and capture is, I can just about guarantee that this will show you that it’s an order of magnitude worse than you imagined.
(Transcript of Video). Here is the aforementioned video presentation by Jacob Appelbaum about your computer's vulnerability, and the military NSA's use of those vulnerabilities to spy on you:


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Whistleblowers According To The Early Americans - 2

The Founders Loved Whistleblowers
In this series, and others, we have been contemplating why good government eventually turns into bad government.

This viewpoint is engendered by our founders who informed us: “Experience has shown that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.” – Thomas Jefferson

Jefferson was telling us that "those entrusted with power", e.g. politicians, military NSA officials, and other government officials,  would slowly but surely convert good government into bad government.

The Dredd Blog System has developed one blog to specifically focus on that issue and the source of the corrupting influence that power has on people (About Toxins Of Power).

Some of the forefathers, way before the germ theory of physical disease became a fundamental medical understanding, had a germ theory of government:
Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other.
(The Germ Theory - of Government - 6). There was also, in the minds of early Americans, the notion of "nip it in the bud" concerning officials of government going bad:
On July 30, 1778, the Continental Congress created the first whistleblower protection law, stating “that it is the duty of all persons in the service of the United States to give the earliest information to Congress or other proper authority of any misconduct, frauds, or misdemeanors committed by any officers or persons in the service of these states.”
(Whistleblowers According To The Early Americans, cf. legislation of July 30, 1778, reprinted in Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789, ed. Government Printing Office (Washington, D.C., 1908), 11:732). We know that founding spirit is alive in patriotic Americans today too.

Especially when we remember or read about Ellsberg, Snowden, Drake, Benning, Tice, Kroft, or Manning for examples (ACLU vs. Clapper).

But there were five patriots in 1971 who are less well known, even though they did a great service to the nation:
More than 40 years ago, on the evening of March 8, 1971, a group of burglars carried out an audacious plan. They pried open the door of an FBI office in
The Golden Whistle
Pennsylvania and stole files about the bureau's surveillance of anti-war groups and civil rights organizations.

Hundreds of agents tried to identify the culprits, but the crime went unsolved. Until now.

For the first time, a new book reveals that the burglars were peace demonstrators who wanted to start a debate about the FBI's unchecked power to spy on Americans. And it's coming out at a time when the country is weighing the merits of surveillance all over again.
(NPR, "The Secret Burglary That Exposed J. Edgar Hoover's FBI"). That is a story about John Raines, Bonnie Raines, Keith Forsyth, and two others.

Government festers rather than healing itself, and the murderous, traitorous, criminal gangrene continues to get worse and worse, until it breaks out in full tyranny against the citizens of the nation.

Some in government, like antibodies that work against an infection, try to deal with the issue:
Washington, D.C. July 31, 2013. By a unanimous resolution the U.S. Senate declared July 30, 2013 as "National Whistleblower Appreciation Day." The National Whistleblowers Center strongly supports the Senate's historic action and calls on every American reflect upon the tremendous contributions whistleblowers have made to American democracy, as well as the struggles and sacrifices they have endured.
(Senate Establishes "National Whistleblower Appreciation Day"). But unless we have whistleblowers and appreciation for them, then we are animating the personality of organized crime:
A mafia informant who disappeared nearly a year ago was tortured and her body dissolved in acid by her former partner and other family members angry that she had cooperated with authorities, Italian police said Monday.

The woman, 35-year old Lea Garofalo, was forced onto a truck carrying 50 liters of acid, interrogated by her abductors and later killed in a field near Milan in the night between November 24 and November 25, 2009, investigators told reporters.

Four people were arrested and another two, including Garofalo's former partner, Carlo Cosco, were served arrest warrants while already in jail.

Investigators said Cosco, who fathered Garofalo's daughter, was behind the murder and that this was meant as revenge for the woman having provided information to anti-mafia prosecutors between 2002 and 2009.
(Reuters, "Mafia Informant Dissolved in Acid"). Unfortunately, we now have an administration that in attitude, upon closer analysis as to whistleblowers, is more like the Mafia than it is like the Americans who founded our nation.

Do everything you can to support The National Whistleblower Center.

The previous post in this series is here.

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Military NSA Spy Program Is Part of the Powell Manifesto

Sometimes liberals and progressives long for the days of the "moderate right-wing republican / democrat" conservative ideology.

But actually they long for what they think or have heard that "moderate right-wing ideology" is.

The "memo", a.k.a. "manifesto", of Lewis Powell (blue dog), who later became a Supreme Court Justice by way of a nomination by President Richard Nixon, purports to describe a strategy of protecting "American Values."

In today's post, or in a series of posts if necessary, I will make an attempt to show that the fundamental ideology and strategy of that Powell memo or manifesto is erroneous ideology, because it is neither moderate, American, nor intellectually honest at its foundation, being composed of one or more false premises.

The memo begins with language that seems to be "moderate right-wing ideology" in one sense:
No thoughtful person can question that the American economic system is under broad attack. This varies in scope, intensity, in the techniques employed, and in the level of visibility.
(The Powell Memo ... Manifesto, circa August, 1971). A broad attack on "the American economic system" was the fundamental dynamic offered as the basis for putting "moderate right-wing ideology" into action.

It is easy to see that Powell's manifesto begins with a straw-man argument, then uses that logical fallacy to set up an argument for a process to tear down that straw-man:
Sources of the Attack
The sources are varied and diffused. They include, not unexpectedly, the Communists, New Leftists and other revolutionaries who would destroy the entire system, both political and economic. These extremists of the left ... the chorus of criticism come from perfectly respectable elements of society: from the college campus, the pulpit, the media, the intellectual and literary journals, the arts and sciences, and from politicians. In most of these groups the movement against the system is participated in only by minorities. Yet, these often are the most articulate, the most vocal, the most prolific in their writing and speaking.
(ibid, "The Powell Memo ... Manifesto", emphasis added). Oh, it is those who are "the most articulate, the most vocal, the most prolific in their writing and speaking", who are of course the "minorities."

Yeah, "that's the ticket" as John Lovitz would say.

This "moderate right-wing ideology" which the Powell manifesto sets up, is the straw-man argument that the minorities are out to destroy the American economy (cf. Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy).

To say that "the American economic system", as Powell put it, "is under broad attack" by "minorities" is not intellectually honest, not moderate ideology, rather, it is rank racism and rank feudalism in the extreme (see e.g. American Feudalism - 6).

That straw-man "moderate right-wing republican ideology" is actually elitist propaganda which falsely describes traditional American values of government as being socialist, communist, or fascist (see e.g. The Common Good).

Powell then, after setting up the false premise, goes on to project a formula for instilling an authoritarian business party platform ("the enterprise system") to replace American government with a plutocracy and a plutonomy, while calling it "democracy" (see e.g. The Homeland: Big Brother Plutonomy - 9).

The father of the military NSA's spying on all peoples everywhere, J. Edgar Hoover, had the Powell dogma down to a science that neoCons could believe in years before Powell embraced it.

He spied on minorities using the power of government secrecy, which led to one or two of America's greatest shames:
The FBI and Bay Area police were rounding up alien Japanese again today. The searches and arrests, said Nat J.L. Pieper, FBI chief here, were being made “on allegations of contraband and known association with Japanese nationalistic groups.”
...
Within a week the reception center at Manzanar, in the Owens Valley, will be ready to receive hundreds of alien and American-born Japanese who must evacuate the Pacific Coast military area.

More than 100 carpenters and mechanics directed by Lieut. Col. W.B. Higgins, of the Corps of Engineers, are rushing construction of the center for the Wartime Civil Control Administration. The WCCA is the military-civilian organization that will handle evacuation and resettlement problems, under supervision of Lieut. Gen. John L. DeWitt, commander of the Western Defense Command and Fourth Army.

They will be classified as to professions and occupations, and remain at the centers only until they are able to complete plans for re-establishing themselves in back-from-the-coast regions from which they are not banned by military decree.

Persons facing evacuation were warned today against “stalling” or unintentionally taking too much time to straighten our their affairs before leaving the military areas.

The next step in operation of the WCCA, General DeWitt said, will “border on enforced removal.”
...
Hoover, influenced by his work at the Library of Congress, decided to create a massive card index of people with left-wing political views. Over the next few years 450,000 names were indexed and detailed biographical notes were written up on the 60,000 that Hoover considered the most dangerous. Hoover then advised Palmer to have these people rounded up and deported.

On 7th November, 1919, the second anniversary of the Russian Revolution, over 10,000 suspected communists and anarchists were arrested in twenty-three different cities. However, the vast majority of these people were American citizens and had to be eventually released. However, Hoover now had the names of hundreds of lawyers who were willing to represent radicals in court. These were now added to his growing list of names in his indexed database.
(The Queens of Stalingrad - 2). Notice that the military was at the heart of these activities, in concert with non-military law enforcement, to deprive Americans of their constitutional rights in the name of "American values" (which is military sadism: How The Official Pleasure In Torture is Analyzed).

Some of the seeds of this latest infestation of bullying (On The Origin of The Bully Religion) is being exposed by the forced release of documents purporting to show us that "Bush II" (The Dogma of The High Priest In Chief) made "us" (the military NSA) do it (see NSA declassifies Bush II era docs).

There is growing protest and disgust toward the military NSA and its Orwellian ideology that is fit for the despots of empire (NSA and GCHQ targeted aid agencies and European officials – live updates, Israeli Officials angry at NSA spying), but some writers think that the military NSA will ignore the sharp criticism (NSA surveillance programme: 'It's going to get worse').

In the military NSA minds, they are "saving America" from those highly educated lefties in the minorities after all, by spying on everyone everywhere.

What will they do next, cancel food stamps and unemployment insurance benefits for those who really need them, while raising the military NSA and other war budgets in order to save the economy?

Monday, December 16, 2013

ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 8

This series is about a case filed in the Second Circuit, in the Federal District Court in Manhattan (complaint: ACLU v. Clapper et. al.).

A judge in the District of Columbia Circuit, in a Federal District Court there, has ruled that the military NSA practices are likely unconstitutional, and has therefore issued a preliminary injunction (pre-trial).

At footnote two of the judge's memorandum opinion, the judge mentions the case this Dredd Blog series is following.

The judge wrote the following: "The complaint in ACLU v. Clapper, Civ. No. 13-3994, which was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York on June 11, 2013, alleges claims similar to those in the instant two cases."

In issuing the injunction, the court ruled to wit:
But in the meantime, for all the above reasons, I will grant Larry Klayman's and Charles Strange's requests for an injunction and enter an order that (1) bars the Government from collecting, as part of the NSA's Bulk Telephony Metadata Program, any telephony metadata associated with their personal Verizon accounts and (2) requires the Government to destroy any such metadata in its possession that was collected through the bulk collection program.
(Klayman v Obama, U.S. Dist. Court for the Dist. of Columbia, 12/16/13, PDF). The judge stayed the injunction pending appeal, but told the government to start figuring out how to lose the data it has collected.

That decision by conservative Judge Leon (appointed by Bush II) may help persuade the judge in the ACLU v. Clapper case Dredd Blog is following in this series.

We await a decision by Judge Pauley in this ACLU v Clapper case.

UPDATE: Judge Pauley, of the DCNY federal court, reached the opposite conclusion from what federal Judge Leon did in Klayman v Obama.

New York federal Judge Pauley, appointed by President Clinton, ruled in favor of the government, and dismissed the case brought by the ACLU (ACLU vs. Clapper, PDF), prompting this comment by the ACLU:
“We are extremely disappointed with this decision, which misinterprets the relevant statutes, understates the privacy implications of the government’s surveillance and misapplies a narrow and outdated precedent to read away core constitutional protections,” said Jameel Jaffer, ACLU deputy legal director. “As another federal judge and the president’s own review group concluded last week, the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of telephony data constitutes a serious invasion of Americans’ privacy. We intend to appeal and look forward to making our case in the Second Circuit.”
(ACLU Blog). We will follow the two federal cases in this series as they move on to the Federal Appellate courts and the Supreme Court.

The ACLU filed an appeal in ACLU v Clapper (Guardian).

UPDATE 2: Another case is moving along in the Ninth Circuit:
That case is: First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles v. NSA
A copy of the complaint in that case is here (PDF).
This makes three federal circuits in which the NSA is now being sued (D.C. Cir., 2nd Cir., and 9th Cir.).

The next post in this series is here, previous post in this series is here.



Monday, December 9, 2013

The Queens of Stalingrad - 4

"Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall"
In this series Dredd Blog has been pointing the utter absurdity of what Daniel Ellesburg calls The United Stasi of America.

The internet business community is nervous that world Internet traffic will somehow move from U.S. locations to somewhere else in rebellion to the military NSA operating in the United States as the East German Stasi once did (Guardian).

The Russian Communists stopped it under Gorbachev, so why can't the wannabe American Communists stop lying to congress and everyone else and do it too?

How true these warnings were and are:
"If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy." - James Madison
...
Experience has shown that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.” – Thomas Jefferson
...
"Leave no authority existing not responsible to the people." - Thomas Jefferson
The following is an open letter to those who now support or tend to fascist/communist forms of government in the U.S.:

An open letter to Washington


Dear Mr. President and Members of Congress,

We understand that governments have a duty to protect their citizens. But this summer’s revelations highlighted the urgent need to reform government surveillance practices worldwide. The balance in many countries has tipped too far in favor of the state and away from the rights of the individual — rights that are enshrined in our Constitution. This undermines the freedoms we all cherish. It’s time for a change.

For our part, we are focused on keeping users’ data secure — deploying the latest encryption technology to prevent unauthorized surveillance on our networks and by pushing back on government requests to ensure that they are legal and reasonable in scope.

We urge the US to take the lead and make reforms that ensure that government surveillance efforts are clearly restricted by law, proportionate to the risks, transparent and subject to independent oversight. To see the full set of principles we support, visit ReformGovernmentSurveillance.com

Sincerely,

AOL, Apple, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Twitter, Yahoo


The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

A talk from the Festival of Dangerous Ideas:


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Fly Like An American Eagle (Don't Shoot The Messenger)

Shooting the messenger
We all carry a message of some kind.

The military NSA does not like that, so it militantly steals, copies, and stores all of our messages which we send on our cell phones, email, and anything else they can get their hands on.

However, the military NSA does not get the message, the supreme message.

Our supreme message is the U.S. Constitution, which the military NSA is constantly shooting down, including the current message you are now reading, aren't they now, even as they wage warfare on the common good as we discussed in yesterday's post.

So, here is another message about The Common Good for them to read.

It is about our real American Eagle:

"Fly Like An Eagle"

Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future

I want to fly like an eagle
To the sea
Fly like an eagle
Let my spirit carry me
I want to fly like an eagle
Till I'm free
Oh, Lord, through the revolution

Feed the babies
Who don't have enough to eat
Shoe the children
With no shoes on their feet
House the people
Livin' in the street
Oh, oh, there's a solution


I want to fly like an eagle
To the sea
Fly like an eagle
Let my spirit carry me
I want to fly like an eagle
Till I'm free
Fly through the revolution

Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future

I want to fly like an eagle
To the sea
Fly like an eagle
Let my spirit carry me
I want to fly like an eagle
Till I'm free
Fly through the revolution

Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future
Time keeps on slippin', slippin', slippin'
Into the future


"Fly Like an Eagle", by The Steve Miller Band:


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

ACLU vs. Clapper, Alexander, Hagel, Holder, and Mueller - 7

Click to enrage
The effort to shut down the government by the neoCon elements within the U.S. House of Representatives has temporarily stalled this case.

The government lawyers in the DOJ who are ticking some judges off, asked for an extension of time in which to respond because. Just because.

The chief judge gave them some time in all civil cases pending in that district in which they were appearing as counsel, an extension which they really liked, so, then they came back to ask for even more time.

In response, the judge (Pauley) on the specific case issued this order:

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK

AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION;
AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION
FOUNDATION; NEW YORK CIVIL LIBERTIES
UNION; and NEW YORK CIVIL LIBERTIES
UNION FOUNDATION,

Plaintiffs,
                                                                           Case No. 13-cv-03994-UA
v.                                                                        Hon. William H. Pauley

JAMES R. CLAPPER, in his official capacity as
Director of National Intelligence; KEITH B.
ALEXANDER, in his official capacity as Director
of the National Security Agency and Chief of the
Central Security Service; CHARLES T. HAGEL, in
his official capacity as Secretary of Defense; ERIC
H. HOLDER, in his official capacity as Attorney
General of the United States; and ROBERT S.
MUELLER III, in his official capacity as Director
of the Federal Bureau of Investigation,

Defendants.


WILLIAM H. PAULEY III, District Judge:

    On October 1, 2012, Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska stayed all civil actions in the Southern District of New York where the United States Attorney represents the United States, its agencies, or its employees. By letter dated October 10, the ACLU seeks to lift the stay in this case. By letter dated October 11, the Government opposes that application.

    The Government argues a stay is appropriate because funding for the Department of Justice has expired and appropriations have lapsed. But Plaintiffs allege they are suffering ongoing irreparable harm. An indefinite shutdown cannot shield the Government from defending against claims of ongoing constitutional violations.

    This case presents issues of public importance to the nation and deserves resolution in a timely and efficient manner. As Plaintiffs note, other district courts faced with pressing issues have required the Department of Justice to continue to litigate, despite the shutdown. See ECF No.14, First Unitarian Church of L.A. v. Nat'l Sec. Agency, No. 13 Civ. 3287 (JSW)(N.D.Cal.); ECF No. 11, Priests for Live v. U.S. Dep't of Health & Human Servs., No. 13 Civ. 1261 (EGS)(D.D.C.).

    Accordingly, the stay is lifted and the Court adopts the following schedule:

        1. The parties will file reply briefs on their pending motions on October 25, 2013;
        2. This Court will hear oral argument on November 22, 2013 at 10:30 a.m.

Dated: October 15, 2013
    New York, New York

                                SO ORDERED;

                                /s/
                                WILLIAM H. PAULEY III
                                    U.S.D.J.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.