MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘mass surveillance’

Republicans & Democrats Agree: Give Vast Snooping Powers to The U.S. Government

Posted by M. C. on November 25, 2019

https://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/republicans-democrats-agree-give-vast-snooping-powers-to-the-u-s-government_11212019

Mac Slavo

Even in our polarized and right vs. left political paradigm, there is one thing both republicans and democrats can agree on: The federal government should have vast snooping powers and conduct mass surveillance on everyone. They simply disagree over who should be in charge of abusing those excessive powers.

The impeachment circus did one thing successfully. It took attention from the government’s mass surveillance programs that are constantly expanded. As Reason proposed: If Democrats really feared Donald Trump’s exercise of the powers of the presidency, why would they propose extending the surveillance powers of the controversial Patriot Act?

House Democrats have successfully slipped an unqualified renewal of the draconian PATRIOT Act into an emergency funding bill – voting near-unanimously for sweeping surveillance carte blanche that was the basis for the notorious NSA program.
Buried on the next-to-last page of the Continuing Appropriations Act, meant to keep the government’s lights on and dated yesterday, is the following language:

Section  102(b)(1)  of  the  USA  PATRIOT  Improvement  and  Reauthorization  Act  of  2005  (50  U.S.C.  101805  note)  is  amended  by  striking  “December  15,  2019”  and inserting “March 15, 2020”.

This relatively innocuous language pushes back the sunset provision of the Patriot Act by three months, leaving its vast powers in the hands of a president who Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden charges with “failure to uphold basic democratic principles,” who House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has accused of “alarming connections and conduct with Russia” and, joined by Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, says is making an attempt to “shred the Constitution.” –Reason

If democrats honestly believed that Trump was all of the things he’s being accused of, why trust him with the Patriot Act?

The American Civil Liberties Union agrees, calling the Patriot Act “an overnight revision of the nation’s surveillance laws that vastly expanded the government’s authority to spy on its own citizens, while simultaneously reducing checks and balances on those powers like judicial oversight, public accountability, and the ability to challenge government searches in court.”

Attempts to roll back the spying powers of the government have all failed. This power is only expanding and it’s going to get harder for people to protect themselves against the government when they abuse this power. The last time (in 2018) libertarian-leaning Republicans and a handful of Democrats wanted to strip the government of some of its mass surveillance power, it failed.

“It became quickly apparent that leading Democrats intended to side with Trump and against those within their own party who favored imposing safeguards on the Trump administration’s ability to engage in domestic surveillance,” The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald wrote at the time. “The most bizarre aspect of this spectacle was that the Democrats who most aggressively defended Trump’s version of the surveillance bill—the Democrats most eager to preserve Trump’s spying powers as virtually limitless—were the very same Democratic House members who have become media stars this year by flamboyantly denouncing Trump as a treasonous, lawless despot in front of every television camera they could find.”

213 best The Prisoner/The Village/Portmeirion images on ...

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The Real News Is What Is Not in the News – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on October 29, 2019

H.L. Mencken said: “American journalism (like the journalism of any other country) is predominantly paltry and worthless. Its pretensions are enormous, but its achievements are insignificant.” 

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/10/gary-d-barnett/the-real-news-is-what-is-not-in-the-news/

By

…Most of the general “news” outlets today are centered on the possibility of a Trump impeachment, and all the drama and slime connected with this all-consuming story. Of course, the transgender and fake racist news is nearly daily as well, including all the unsettling salacious details. One look at MSNBC will garner the viewer with almost the entirety of its broadcasts related to Trump, impeachment, and the cast of impeachment characters. Jump to the supposedly conservative Fox News, and the tone changes to Republicans versus Democrats, or more accurately, Democrats against Trump. In other words, no real news exists in the mainstream, only infighting, name-calling, tweet wrestling, and absurdity is evident. Throw in the phony nonsensical “climate change” news with the “expert” Hollywood actor and kid-of-the-day reports, and there you have it; all the news fit to print…

So what is not in the mainstream news?

Julian Assange is not in the news. This hero who simply told the truth and exposed the U.S. military and political scum for what they really are, has been almost totally ignored by the media. He was forced into isolation for years, then taken prisoner, drugged, tortured, and is on the verge of death, but news about his plight is not to be found in any mainstream publication.

Jeffrey Epstein was involved in a massive conspiracy of child molestation, extortion, blackmail, espionage, spy networks, and much more. These immoral and criminal activities were connected with high-level politicians, corporate and banking heads, Wall Street, Hollywood giants, and others, but soon after the probable murder of Epstein, a very convenient outcome, his name and all those mentioned have been suspiciously missing from any reporting.

Even with all the massive evidence showing vast inconsistencies in the government’s official story about the “attacks” on September 11th, 2001, have any mainstream outlets investigated the multitude of stories, of witnesses, of legitimate whistleblowers, or even bothered to keep the story alive? In fact, is 9/11 ever mentioned in the mainstream from the standpoint of doubt considering all the many questions left unanswered?

Are any news stories about mass surveillance of the population at large by government, government’s controlling elite, the CIA, FBI, and their fascist partners in the communication industry evident in today’s mainstream news? Every financial transaction, every keystroke, everything viewed or read online, every phone call, text, and every email are captured, databased, and stored, but this is not discussed by those who claim to present the news. It is not investigated or talked about at this juncture unless it is isolated to defending particular individuals or favored politicians…

These are but a handful of examples of the truths purposely left out of the mainstream news. The list is unending, and if any go back in time, there are so many important examples of these lies of omission, that one would find it impossible to identify them all. Attempting to explain the enormity of deceit evident in the reporting of news in the mainstream media would be a futile exercise. Why does it even exist? The mainstream news exists today because it is structured as a propaganda arm of the ruling elite, not an honest business reporting on actual news and events.

H.L. Mencken said: “American journalism (like the journalism of any other country) is predominantly paltry and worthless. Its pretensions are enormous, but its achievements are insignificant.” 

He was right of course, but in the context of the press, American journalism’s achievements while insignificant, are destructive, dishonest, misleading, and dangerous. I liken modern journalism as only a colluding partner of the forces of evil.

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H. L. Mencken Quotes - iPerceptive

 

 

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The Very Book The Government Does Not Want You To Read Just Went #1 In The World – Collective Evolution

Posted by M. C. on September 20, 2019

https://www.collective-evolution.com/2019/09/18/the-very-book-the-government-does-not-want-you-to-read-just-went-1-in-the-world/

In Brief

  • The Facts:Edward Snowden recently released a book titled “Permanent Record.” The US government is now suing the publisher of the book for not giving the CIA and the NSA a chance to erase classified details from the book.
  • Reflect On:What is the government really protecting? Are they protecting the well being of the citizenry or are they protecting immoral, unethical, political, corporate and elitist interests?

George Orwell’s 1984 is a classic book depicting a populace ruled by a political regime that persecutes individualism and independent critical thinking as “thoughtcrimes” that must be enforced by the “thought police.” This party seeks power above all, and, through the propagandist Ministry of Truth, presents the people with their version of truth and casts away all other information and opinion. Sound familiar?

 

This is exactly what’s happening today right in front of our eyes. The “ministry of truth” comes in the form, at least on social media, as FakeNews watchdogs. These are entities that are flagging information that threatens corporate and political interests and labels it as “fake news” when a lot of it, is in fact, the complete opposite. Since when does an authoritative entity like the government have to step in and decide for the people what is real and what is not? Are people not capable of examining sources and determining this for themselves? These fake news watchdogs have some interesting sponsors. One of these sponsors, for example, is NewsGuard. They are funded by Clinton donors and big pharma, with ties to the CFR. You can read more about that entity here.

Companies and government agencies who are threatened by information also seem to be employing an “army of bloggers, surrogates, trolls, and bots on Twitter, Facebook, and by email” (Robert F. Kennedy Jr.) to try and sway discussion and brainwash people. We here at Collective Evolution have been experiencing them as well.

The world knows why the hunt for Julian Assange was ongoing for so long, it’s because he leaked secrets and exposed those who keep them. He exposed the lies, corruption and deceit that represents the backbone of the Western military alliance and the American empire. He exposed, in the words of John F. Hylan, former Mayor of New York City, the “real menace of Republic”, the “invisible government, which like a giant octopus sprawls its slimy legs over our cities, states and nation.” He exposes the ones “who virtually run the United States government for their own selfish purposes.” (source)(source)

He exposed immoral and unethical actions that have no basis and justification, he is a hero.

The same thing goes for National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden, who leaked classified documents regarding the scope of the US governments surveillance programs, which is and was huge. He is and was not the first, William Binney did the same, along with Thomas Drake and many others.

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Keep in mind that this is a global mass surveillance program. Snowden recently released a book about it, and more.

The Takeaway

At the end of the day, the US government suing the publisher of Snowden’s book is only bringing more attention to the truth of mass censorship and that this global elite is losing power. The more the global elite respond the way they are, with this like the mass censorship of information, alternative independent media outlets being shut down, and jailing people like Julian Assange, the more they hurt their own interests… which is inspiring for humanity as we awaken

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Assange

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Big Government and Big Tech Are Partnering to Track Us Everywhere

Posted by M. C. on July 9, 2019

These four spying companies – are currently worth a combined $3.7 trillion.  Our nation’s entire economy – is $19.4 trillion.

Big Government and Big Tech Are Partnering to Track Us Everywhere

George Orwell was a brilliant individual.  A man of incredible insight – and foresight.

In his unfathomably predictive novel 1984, Orwell warns of Big Brother:

“(O)stensibly the leader of Oceania, a totalitarian state wherein the ruling party Ingsoc wields total power ‘for its own sake’ over the inhabitants.

“In the society that Orwell describes, every citizen is under constant surveillance by the authorities, mainly by telescreens.…The people are constantly reminded of this by the slogan ‘Big Brother is watching you’: a maxim that is ubiquitously on display.

“In modern culture, the term ‘Big Brother’ has entered the lexicon as a synonym for abuse of government power, particularly in respect to civil liberties, often specifically related to mass surveillance.”

As brilliant as Orwell was, something continuously struck me as incorrect as I read 1984.

Orwell’s government – was extraordinarily competent in its totalitarian imposition of technological power.

In Reality – no government in the history of man has ever been even remotely close to that competent.

For Orwell’s Big Brother dystopia to become Reality – Big Government would need private sector help.

Enter private sector Big Tech.

Seton Motley | Red State | RedState.com

How Google and Amazon Are ‘Spying’ on You:

“The study found that digital assistants (Google Home and Amazon Echo) can be ‘awake’ even when users think they aren’t listening….

This is ALL insanely creepy.

Big Tech is…insanely big.

Microsoft (Market Cap: $1.1 trillion)

Amazon (Market Cap: $942 billion)

Google (Market Cap: $775 billion)

Facebook (Market Cap: $550 billion)

These four spying companies – are currently worth a combined $3.7 trillion.  Our nation’s entire economy – is $19.4 trillion.

Which mans these four companies – all by themselves – are worth 19% of the United States…

The Government Just Admitted It Will Use Smart Home Devices for Spying:

“If you want evidence that US intelligence agencies aren’t losing surveillance abilities because of the rising use of encryption by tech companies, look no further than the testimony…by the (then) director of national intelligence, James Clapper….

“Clapper made clear that the internet of things – the many devices like thermostats, cameras and other appliances that are increasingly connected to the internet – are providing ample opportunity for intelligence agencies to spy on targets, and possibly the masses. And it’s a danger that many consumers who buy these products may be wholly unaware of….

“Privacy advocates have known about the potential for government to exploit the internet of things for years. Law enforcement agencies have taken notice too, increasingly serving court orders on companies for data they keep that citizens might not even know they are transmitting. Police have already been asking Google-owned company Dropcam for footage from cameras inside people’s homes meant to keep an eye on their kids.”

Orwell got the tech right – just not Big Government’s ability to create it for totalitarian ends…

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nsa-spying-2

Not that funny.

 

 

 

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Edward Snowden: With Technology, Institutions Have Made ‘Most Effective Means of Social Control in the History of Our Species’ | Common Dreams News

Posted by M. C. on June 3, 2019

“How many of you who have a Facebook account actually read the terms of service?” Snowden asked. “Everything has hundreds and hundreds of pages of legal jargon that we’re not qualified to read and assess—and yet they’re considered to be binding upon us.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/05/31/edward-snowden-technology-institutions-have-made-most-effective-means-social-control

NSA whistleblower says “new platforms and algorithms” can have direct effect on human behavior

Edward Snowden speaking via livestream on May 30, 2019 at Dalhousi University in Halifax

Edward Snowden speaking via livestream on May 30, 2019 at Dalhousi University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. (Screengrab/Vimeo)

 

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said Thursday that people in systems of power have exploited the human desire to connect in order to create systems of mass surveillance.

Snowden appeared at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia via livestream from Moscow to give a keynote address for the Canadian university’s Open Dialogue Series.

Right now, he said, humanity is in a sort of “atomic moment” in the field of computer science.

“We’re in the midst of the greatest redistribution of power since the Industrial Revolution, and this is happening because technology has provided a new capability,” Snowden said.

“It’s related to influence that reaches everyone in every place,” he said. “It has no regard for borders. Its reach is unlimited, if you will, but its safeguards are not.”

Without such defenses, technology is able to affect human behavior.

Institutions can “monitor and record private activities of people on a scale that’s broad enough that we can say it’s close to all-powerful,” said Snowden. They do this through “new platforms and algorithms,” through which “they’re able to shift our behavior. In some cases they’re able to predict our decisions—and also nudge them—to different outcomes. And they do this by exploiting the human need for belonging.”

“We don’t sign up for this,” he added, dismissing the notion that people know exactly what they are getting into with social media platforms like Facebook.

“How many of you who have a Facebook account actually read the terms of service?” Snowden asked. “Everything has hundreds and hundreds of pages of legal jargon that we’re not qualified to read and assess—and yet they’re considered to be binding upon us.”

“It is through this sort of unholy connection of technology and sort of an unusual interpretation of contract law,” he continued, “that these institutions have been able to transform this greatest virtue of humanity—which is this desire to interact and to connect and to cooperate and to share—to transform all of that into a weakness.”

“And now,” he added, “these institutions, which are both commercial and governmental, have built upon that and… have structuralized that and entrenched it to where it has become now the most effective means of social control in the history of our species.”

“Maybe you’ve heard about it,” Snowden said. “This is mass surveillance.”

Listen to Snowden’s full remarks below. (He begins speaking around the 25-minute mark.)

Proceeds from the event went to the Montreal-based organization For the Refugees, which is working to obtain refugee status in Canada for the three families who sheltered Snowden in Hong Kong when he fled the U.S. to avoid being charged with violations under the Espionage Act.

Two of Snowden’s “guardian angels” arrived in Canada in March. The other five are still stuck in Hong Kong, the organization says, where they face the threat of deportation to their home countries of Sri Lanka and the Philippines, where they could face continued threats of persecution, torture, and possible death.

Snowden, in his remarks Thursday, said, “I owe them a debt that I’ll never be able to repay.”

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Google Employees Rebel Against Project Dragonfly – The Organic Prepper

Posted by M. C. on December 13, 2018

Firefox, Brave, Vivaldi, DuckDuckGo, Startpage – The choice is yours.

https://www.theorganicprepper.com/dragonfly-google-search-engine/

By Meadow Clark

More than 1,400 Google staff, many journalists, and human rights organizations are calling on Google to halt its controversial project called Dragonfly.

What is Project Dragonfly?

Dragonfly is a search engine specially built for China. It would unleash more censorship on a mass scale by selectively blocking certain search terms, apparently at the behest of China’s government. Human rights groups are blasting the company for aiding and abetting China’s mass surveillance and rights violations which could result in potential imprisonment.

It turns out Google’s employees had been unwittingly working on this project for a while until 2017 without knowing its intended purpose. News of this highly secret program finally leaked and no one is letting it get swept under the rug.

Thankfully, since the news leaked out, no amount of time has caused advocates and free speech lovers to forget this scandal. Those in the know are using the hashtag #DropDragonfly.

Joe Westby@JoeWestby

Sundar Pichai seems to be keen on protecting Google users privacy. So why does he want to give user data to Chinese authorities to help them arrest or imprison people?

36 people are talking about this

How would the Dragonfly search engine in China Work?

The search engine would censure terms like “human rights” and “religion.” Hundreds of Google employees have called this out as obvious freedom of speech violations.

BBC reported in August:

The search app would “blacklist sensitive queries”, The Intercept says, identifying and filtering websites currently blocked by China’s so-called Great Firewall.

According to documents it had seen, a search via the app would result in a list with banned websites removed and a disclaimer saying that “some results may have been removed due to statutory requirements”.

It said the BBC News website and Wikipedia would be among those blocked.

Employees of Google are horrified.

“We are Google employees and we join Amnesty International in calling on Google to cancel project Dragonfly…”

Common Dreams reported that an open letter was drawn up…

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mark of the beast

The Mark of the Beast

 

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CIA’s ‘surveillance state’ is operating against us all | TheHill

Posted by M. C. on November 26, 2018

https://thehill.com/opinion/national-security/414804-surveillance-state-is-alive-well-and-operating-against-us-all

BY SHARYL ATTKISSON

Maybe you once thought the CIA wasn’t supposed to spy on Americans here in the United States.

That concept is so yesteryear.

Over time, the CIA upper echelon has secretly developed all kinds of policy statements and legal rationales to justify routine, widespread surveillance on U.S. soil of citizens who aren’t suspected of terrorism or being a spy.

The latest outrage is found in newly declassified documents from 2014. They reveal the CIA not only intercepted emails of U.S. citizens but they were emails of the most sensitive kind — written to Congress and involving whistleblowers reporting alleged wrongdoing within the Intelligence Community.

The disclosures, kept secret until now, are two letters of “congressional notification” from the Intelligence Community inspector general at the time, Charles McCullough. He stated that during “routine counterintelligence monitoring of government computer systems,” the CIA collected emails between congressional staff and the CIA’s head of whistleblowing and source protection… Read the rest of this entry »

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