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Posts Tagged ‘Edward Snowden’

Worried about the NSA monitoring you?

If you take certain steps to mask your identity online, such as using the encryption service TOR, or even investigating an alternative to the buggy Windows operating system, you’re all but asking for “deep” monitoring by the NSA.

big_brotherTOR is an encryption network developed by the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in the 1990s. The military’s hope was to enable government workers to search the web without exposing their locations and identities. The system today is widely available, runs on open source code and is popular among privacy advocates as a more secure alternative to open Internet surfing, particularly in countries with repressive regimes. It works by encrypting the user’s address and routing the traffic through servers that are located around the world (so-called “onion routing.”) How does the NSA access it? Through a computer system called XKeyscore, one of the various agency surveillance tools that NSA leaker Edward Snowden disclosed last summer.

According to a recent report from the German media outlet Tagesschau, a group of TOR affiliates working with Tagesschau looked into the source code for XKeyscore. They found that nine servers running TOR, including one at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, were under constant NSA surveillance. The code also revealed some of the behaviors that users could undertake to immediately be tagged or “fingerprinted” for so-called deep packet inspection, an investigation into the content of data packages you send across the Internet, such as emails, web searches and browsing history.

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Another sobering and thought-provoking article from our friends at Laissez Faire Today.

snowden

Can Snowden Occupy a Vacant Cabin in a Snowstorm?

When it comes to the NSA leaks and Edward Snowden, government has circled the wagons. Whether Democrat or Republican, the folks doing the people’s business have one view and the people see it differently. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was booed and interrupted by liberal attendees at the Netroots Nation conference on Saturday.

Netroots Nation is a convention for progressive political leaders. Pelosi, a darling of those on the left, was the keynote speaker at the event. But her pro-surveillance, anti-Snowden remarks incited the crowd.  “We’re listening to our progressive leaders who are supposed to be on our side of the team saying it’s OK for us to get targeted” for online surveillance, said Jana Thrift of Eugene, Ore. “It’s crazy. I don’t know who Nancy Pelosi really is.”

We know who Nancy Pelosi is. She’s an authoritarian. She isn’t for freedom, or the people, she represents authority. She’s all for the government spying on us and taking lots of our money to do so. Like most in Washington she believes she knows what’s best for us. Americans should be on a “need to know” basis to keep us safe in Pelosi’s world.

Those on the right are just as bad. (more…)

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Non-Exential Gov't Workers

Reposted from Laissez Faire Today:

The Latest Scapegoat for the Government Shutdown

Washington, D.C. — A tense drama unfolded this week with the virtual shutdown of vital government agencies: the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, as well as many other such federal agencies. Without them, the Founding Fathers could not have imagined the republic.

Even if fewer than one-fourth of federal personnel are furloughed, many Americans expressed fear and outrage. “Babies will soon be dying in the streets,” complained a distressed mother while drinking her latte at Starbucks. Many taxpayers were similarly dismayed by the shutdown of IRS audits. “How can I maintain my blood pressure at a safe level when I know that the IRS will not audit me?” asked a Massachusetts patriot. “If I need surgery,” he added, “I don’t even know if the surgeon general will operate on me.” (more…)

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This article is a re-posting from Laissez Faire Today, a daily e-letter club site dedicated to social/political awareness in the broadest sense. The root of this site is one concerning financial matters, but they expound on a variety of other concerns as well with informative thought brought to their reading public through a continual series of timely articles, book reviews and discount book offerings. With an incredibly vast array of perspective LF defies categorization other than that which might be considered somewhat anarchistic … but in a respectable and responsible manner.

I offer here one of their latest posts, one that describes a woeful tale of totalitarian government surveillance and civil disobedience brought together with an historical perspective on the manner of the world in which we now live. Prepare to witness how our civil liberties in general and specifically our 4th Amendment rights have been under ongoing assault and rapid diminishment through manipulation and lies since no later than the latter half of the 20th Century. See how Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell may well go down in history as one of the greatest philosophical treatises on liberty in Socratic dialog the world has ever witnessed.

For your reading pleasure, I present:

Thank You, RUSSIA?

August 2, 2013

Dear Laissez Faire Today Reader,

Baltimore, MD What happens when you spend a day at home searching the Internet for home appliances and maybe some back-to-school supplies? For most people, you get a lazy afternoon. But one couple in Long Island, N.Y., got a visit from their local police department. They had some questions about their peculiar Internet searches.

Better sit down before you read this. And move away any valuables you might throw at a wall in a fit of rage. (more…)

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"Thank you, Mr. President, for this honor and this opportunity.  I'm not sure I have the words to describe how excited I am to return to the Department of Justice, and especially to get to work again with the people of the FBI.  They are men and women who have devoted their lives to serving and protecting others, and I simply can't wait to be their colleague again."

“Thank you, Mr. President, for this honor and this opportunity. I’m not sure I have the words to describe how excited I am to return to the Department of Justice, and especially to get to work again with the people of the FBI. They are men and women who have devoted their lives to serving and protecting others, and I simply can’t wait to be their colleague again.”

President Obama recently nominated James Comey as director of the FBI. He said, praising him, “To know Jim Comey is also to know his fierce independence and his deep integrity.  Like Bob, he’s that rarity in Washington sometimes—he doesn’t care about politics, he only cares about getting the job done.  At key moments, when it’s mattered most, he joined Bob in standing up for what he believed was right.  He was prepared to give up a job he loved rather than be part of something he felt was fundamentally wrong.  As Jim has said, ‘We know that the rule of law sets this nation apart and is its foundation.'”

Well that’s awfully damned magnanimous and self-sacrificing of good ol’ Jimmy boy… except he didn’t leave!  He stayed with the Justice Department for another year, even though he was certainly and undoubtedly aware of their continued efforts in the monitoring of the personal records of millions of Americans without the legal authority to do so. And, I might add, in direct contradiction to the Constitutional rights of those being targeted. Apparently the straight-out-of-their-ass legal theories proposed by the NSA’s attorneys was enough to keep our man “Jimmy boy” at his post.  Oh!  But that’s all right. As Jim has said, “We know that the rule of law sets this nation apart and is its foundation.”

Ya think? (more…)

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