The case echoes the story of U.S. Marine Brandon Raub. After honorably serving his country on tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mr. Raub, 26, had grown disillusioned with the U.S. federal government, and like Mr. Michael took to posting vague, frustrated, incendiary commentaries to Facebook.
Those posts led to local authorities and federal agents in Chesterfield, Virginia detaining Mr. Raub and then exploiting the state’s involuntary commitment laws to label the protester as “mentally ill”, effectively imprisoning him indefinitely and without trial in a state-run veteran’s hospital.
Both Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney support throwing out due process (warrants) in cases where national security is viewed to be at risk — a policy first put in place by Republican President George W. Bush (with bipartisan support from America’s two ruling parties) in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
You don’t have to live alone in the woods, reading issues of Guns and Ammo and co-writing your manifesto with beard lice, to be terrified about the state of basic freedoms in America today. Given the counterterrorism provisions in the fairly recent National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA), we currently live in a country where the government can pick up American citizens and detain them indefinitely without access to a lawyer or even a criminal trial. That means locked up forever without even the basic protections we afford to rapists and murderers.
Schools across the country are adopting a variety of different tools to monitor students both in school and outside school. Among these tools are RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tags embedded in school ID cards, GPS tracking software in computers, and even CCTV video camera systems.
As Kade Ellis ofPrivacy SOS and the ACLUreported, a security expert says that everyone who was at Occupy Wall Street had their cell phone surveyed by the NYPD. “[T]he identity of that cell phone has been logged, and everybody who was at that demonstration, whether they were arrested, not arrested, whether their photos were ID’d, whether an informant pointed them out, it’s known they were there anyway. This is routine,” private investigator Steven Rambam says in a video talk.
He continued, “[C]ell phones are now the little snitch in your pocket. Cell phones tell me where you are, what you do, who you talk to, everybody you associate with.”
The Senate concludes that when all the privileged details of the investigations were considered, there was no sign that the pricey data centers were successful at fighting any known terrorist plot.
So what did the data centers accomplish? According to the panel the legacy is mostly negative. They claim the Fusion centers — whose objective is ostensibly to share national intelligence with state/local law enforcement and analyze potential terrorist threats — in the end mostly ended up violating U.S. citizens’ civil liberties.
In 1994, the government admitted that it had in fact used St. Louis as a testing ground during the Cold War because it was architecturally similar to Soviet cities, but it said that the material sprayed was zinc cadmium sulfide, a fine powder that is not thought to be dangerous to ones health. Between 1957 and 1958, the U.S. government sprayed much of the United States with this chemical compound as part of its biological test “Operation Large Area Coverage,” which sought to better understand how biological or chemical agents were dispersed in the air.
Martino-Taylor’s study alleges, however, that the chemical compound sprayed over sections of St. Louis was actually laced with dangerous radioactive chemicals.
The blurb for VoiceGrid ID has a particularly dystopic echo, offering a “voice data management solution with unlimited database size” in addition to system architecture that scale all the way up to “national system deployments.”
Americans’ personal privacy is being crushed by the rise of a four-headed corporate-state surveillance system. The four “heads” are: federal government agencies; state and local law enforcement entities; telecoms, web sites & Internet “apps” companies; and private data aggregators (sometimes referred to as commercial data warehouses).
…the FBI has also hinted that it might add photos of individuals under investigation, or individuals who appeared near high-profile persons of interest to the database. The latter prospect has privacy advocates most alarmed, as it could land you on “Big Brother’s database” without a single criminal act.
In fact, the FBI appears to be doing exactly that already, as some states now pass drivers’ license headshots to the agency for future reference/screening. The ambiguity surrounding photographic databases and facial recognition of law-abiding citizens has advocacies very upset.
In cities hosting large gatherings such as the national political conventions or international summits, we’ve come to expect a massive militarized police presence, even as the ranks of protesters thin. But what happens to all of the new high-tech cop toys and newly passed ordinances once conventioneers leave town? They stay.
Activists with Occupy AustinrevealedWednesday that an Austin Police Department detective’s entrapment led to the seven arrests on Dec. 12, 2011, during the Gulf Port Action in Houston, Texas. The seven protesters are facing up to two years in state prison, and one activist, Iraq war veteranEric Marquez, has been in jail since December as a result of the charges.
The giddy, money-drenched, choreographed carnival in Tampa and the one coming up in Charlotte divert us from the real world—the one steadily collapsing around us. The glitz and propaganda, the ridiculous obsessions imparted by our electronic hallucinations, and the spectacles that pass for political participation mask the deadly ecological assault by the corporate state. The worse it gets, the more we retreat into self-delusion.