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US pass spy law - what's next?

Discussion in 'World Politics' started by Kwaku, Aug 6, 2007.

  1. Kwaku

    Kwaku New Member

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    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20134440/

    Quote: Democrats in the House of Representatives reluctantly allowed the passage of a bill this weekend that expands the government's ability to eavesdrop on foreign suspects without warrants.

    Some, including the House speaker Nancy Pelosi, had warned that the bill contained "unacceptable" provisions, but it was passed 227 to 183 following an intense campaign by the White House and congressional Republicans.

    They had argued that failure to pass the bill, which expires in six months, would leave the US vulnerable to terrorist attacks.


    Sound slike whenever anyone shouts "terrorist" these days, everybody else will sign just about any bill in site. What's wrong with the democrats???
    Wouldn't it be nice to pretend to have some backbone at some point?
     
  2. KeepOurFreedoms

    KeepOurFreedoms New Member

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    Analysis: New Law Gives Government Six Months to Turn Internet and Phone Systems into Permanent Spying Architecture
    Ryan Singel
    Wired
    Monday Aug 6, 2007

    A new law expanding the government's spying powers gives the Bush Administration a six-month window to install permanent back doors in the nation's communication networks. The legislation was passed hurriedly by Congress over the weekend and signed into law Sunday by President Bush.

    The bill, known as the Protect America Act, removes the prohibition on warrantless spying on Americans abroad and gives the government wide powers to order communication service providers such as cell phone companies and ISPs to make their networks available to government eavesdroppers.

    The Administration pushed for passage of the changes to close what it called a "surveillance gap," referring to a long-standing feature of the nation's surveillance laws that required the government to get court approval to capture communications inside the United States.

    While the nation's spy laws have been continually loosened since 9/11, the Administration never pushed for the right to tap the nation's domestic communication networks until a secret court recently struck down a key pillar of the government's secret spying program.

    The Administration argues that the world's communication networks now route many foreign to foreign calls and emails through switches in the United States.

    Prior to the law's passage, the nation's spy agencies, such as the National Security Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency, didn't need any court approval to spy on foreigners so long as the wiretaps were outside the United States.

    Now, those agencies are free to order services like Skype, cell phone companies and arguably even search engines to comply with secret spy orders to create back doors in domestic communication networks for the nation's spooks. While it's unclear whether the wiretapping can be used for domestic purposes, the law only requires that the programs that give rise to such orders have a "significant purpose" of foreign intelligence gathering.

    The law:

    Defines the act of reading and listening into American's phone calls and internet communications when they are "reasonably believed" to be outside the country as not surveillance.
    Gives the government 6 months of extended powers to issue orders to "communication service providers," to help with spying that "concerns persons reasonably believed to be outside the United States." The language doesn't require the surveillance to only target people outside the United States, only that some of it does.
    Forces Communication Service providers to comply secretly, though they can challenge the orders to the secret Foreign Intelligence Court. Individuals or companies given such orders will be paid for their cooperation and can not be sued for complying.
    Makes any program or orders launched in the next six months legal forever and perpetually renewable after the six month "sunset" of the new powers.
    Grandfathers in the the current secret surveillance program -- sometimes referred to as the Terrorist Surveillance Program -- and any others that have been blessed by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
    Requires the Attorney General to submit to the secret surveillance court its reasons why these programs aren't considered domestic spying programs, but the court can only throw out those reasons if it finds that they are "clearly erroneous."
    Requires the Attorney General to tell Congress twice a year about any incidents of surveillance abuse and give statistics about how many surveillance programs were started and how many directives were issued.
    Makes no mention of the Inspector General, who uncovered abuses of the Patriot Act by the FBI after being ordered by Congress to audit the use of powerful self-issued subpoenas, is not mentioned in the bill.
    In short, the law gives the Administration the power to order the nation's communication service providers -- which range from Gmail, AOL IM, Twitter, Skype, traditional phone companies, ISPs, internet backbone providers, Federal Express, and social networks -- to create permanent spying outposts for the federal government.

    These outposts need only to have a "significant" purpose of spying on foreigners, would be nearly immune to challenge by lawsuit, and have no court supervision over their extent or implementation.

    Abuses of the outposts will be monitored only by the Justice Department, which has already been found to have underreported abuses of other surveillance powers to Congress.

    In related international news, Zimbabwe's repressive dictator Robert Mugabe also won passage of a law allowing the government to turn that nation's communication infrastructure into a gigantic, secret microphone.
     
  3. jb_1430

    jb_1430 New Member

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    Americans just aren't as concerned with some percieved, Constitutional rights of foreigners suspected of terrorism.
    Fisa courts are spending all their time trying to protect the rights of foreign terrorist when they were created to protect the rights of American citizens.
     
  4. USMC the Almighty

    USMC the Almighty New Member

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    Someone else who doesn't understand how this program works.

    (1) A computer program monitors overseas phonecalls in a process known as datamining identifying numbers and countries which could raise suspicion. There is no proboble cause at this point as they are just numbers. The program identifies patterns and these patterns are used to compare to known patterns and numbers of actual suspected terrorists and their buddies.

    (2) Data mining is completely legal and does not require ay warrant

    (3) As the program identifies patterns, numbers, or other anomolies the program begins to scan the calls for key word and phrases and other things that may signal terrorist activity. This is still data mining and nothing is recorded, kept, ot viewed.

    (4) In the event the data mining program identifies a key word, phrse or other "red flag" anomoly the call is monitored. If the call pans out and the information is valuable intelligence the NSA applies to FISA for a warrant within 72 hrs as the law proscribes.

    (5) If the call has no usefull information the record of it is destroyed. This is done for several reasons.

    a) To protect the privacy of the callers.
    b) It is no use.
    c) To keep a record of it one would have to get a warrant, and no court would approve such warrant, there is no proboble cause to issue such warrant.
    d) Applying for useless warrants for calls that have no value would be a collasal waste of time for our personell assets at NSA, not to mention a collosal waste of time for any FISA judge they went to.

    It is the calls in #5 above that are the crux of the problem. Idiots want the government to get warrants for calls that have no usefull information instead of just discarding any records of them. Why would the government seek a 72hr after the fact warrant for a call it does not need and is not keeping any record of? Thats just stupid. If anything obtaining the warrant would force the government to actually keep a record of the call as a subject of the warrant. Further, since cause cannot be established by the call, it would be a mere formality in which the FISA judge would refuse the warrant and tell the government to destroy any record of it. Which is exactly what they are doing without having to clog up the FISA courts with useless applications.
     
  5. Nice Cut-N-paste job from the Hannity forums are you the man known as Mr Clark or are you simply parroting someone from another website ?
    your truly beginning to show your stripes here buddy.....
    always jumping on others for useless cut-n-pastes and here you are bigger than life doing the same exact thing...

    I like KOF, am starting to believe you are not, who/what you you claim to be
     
  6. jb_1430

    jb_1430 New Member

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    ???? It has nothing to do with spying on Americans abroad. It has to do with spying on ALL "PERSONS OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES".

    ????Its the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. It deals ONLY with collecting Foreign intelligence.

    Oooh it does not. It defines the mere aquisition of data not to be "surveillance".

    "(2) the acquisition does not constitute electronic surveillance;"

    Not the "content" of messages, which would be "surveillance", but instead the data mining that was refered to.
    And it is ALL "PERSONS LOCATED OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES". While they likely pick up Americans communicating outside the US, most of the terrorists are foreigners.

    here's Fisa
    http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode50/usc_sup_01_50_10_36_20_I.html

    lot of the relevent definitions.

    http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode50/usc_sec_50_00001801----000-.html

    and the recent changes.

    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d110:s.01927:

    click "Text of Legislation"

    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c110:S.1927:

    click on the version "passed by the Senate"

    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/D?c110:2:./temp/~c110JEbGZX::

    or if that doesnt work just go to

    http://thomas.loc.gov/

    search on S 1927 ES
     
  7. steveox

    steveox Well-Known Member

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    Dont commit terror acts and you dont have anything to worry about. I support the spy law.
     
  8. Kwaku

    Kwaku New Member

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    Are u kidding???!!!

    o pu-lea-se!
    You've gotta be kidding!
    "Don't commit terror acts and you don't have anything to worry about? You tell that top all the INNOCENT people who are still stuck in Guantanamo or wherever the hell else Big Brother US has stashed anyone who might but then again might not have done anything at all! Or all the innocent people in Iraq who still haven't produced their socalled weapons of bloody mass destruction!!!

    This is insane. Read Kafka's Der Pozess, or rent Enemy of the state if you like: you don't actually have to DO anything to be suspicious!
     
  9. KeepOurFreedoms

    KeepOurFreedoms New Member

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    Give them and inch and they will take a mile. Ever heard that? The government won't stop at a little spying on our neighbors. The next will be YOU.
     
  10. jb_1430

    jb_1430 New Member

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    Yeah, thats what happened with Moussoui before 9/11. I mean, if we let them search the laptops of foreign terrorist, you and I are certain to be next(sarcasm).
     
  11. KeepOurFreedoms

    KeepOurFreedoms New Member

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    Do you honestly think that 4 guys with boxcutters were able to hijack 4 airplanes? in one day? in the USA?
     
  12. jb_1430

    jb_1430 New Member

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    ??? uuuhh yeah. They did have help from 15 others. You make that sound like it would have been a difficult thing to do.
     
  13. KeepOurFreedoms

    KeepOurFreedoms New Member

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    It is impossible, without help....inside help.
     
  14. jb_1430

    jb_1430 New Member

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    Have you ever flown on an airliner before 9/11? Anybody could do it without the need for help.
    I presume you are one who believes all the radio transmissions, cockpit recordings and cell phone conversations were all fabrications by the dark overlords behind the whole thing?
    Rational discussion probably wont be possible.
     
  15. KeepOurFreedoms

    KeepOurFreedoms New Member

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    I agree, rational discussion with you won't be possible.
     
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