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  Big day tomorrow for all of us – at 10:30 a.m. in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, in Manhattan, the American Civil Liberties Union will present oral arguments challenging the constitutionality of the NSA’s mass call-tracking program. This is one of several cases filed around the country by various organizations against NSA, National Security Agency, or as it is also known No Such Agency.
   In another case filed in LA in July of this year by Electronic Frontier Foundation on behalf of 22 organizations FIRST UNITARIAN CHURCH OF LOS ANGELES  against NSA three of Congress’s most staunch defenders of Americans’ privacy rights — Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) — filed an amicus curiae brief in support of plaintiffs stating that they "have seen no evidence that the bulk collection of americans’ phone records has provided useful intelligence unobtainable through less intrusive means". It is hard not to believe them because as members of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Senators Wyden and Udall have for years participated in the oversight of government surveillance conducted under the Patriot Act which "they knew would astonish most Americans". They tried to warn the public about NSA activities without disclosing classified information. The Senators refer to numerous statements they made at the Senate hearings like this one "“Congress is granting powers to the executive branch that lead to abuse, and, frankly, shield the executive branch from accountability” made by Senator Udall in May of 2011 (157 Cong. Rec. S3258, daily ed. May 24, 2011). Senators appealed to the court "Because the government’s call-records program needlessly intrudes upon the privacy rights of hundreds of millions of Americans, Amici believe the bulk collection of these phone records should be ended.".
   This is the third case since 2006 filed by Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) against NSA  yet so far the Government was able to defend itself and allow NSA to continue their broad reaching spying on millions of Americans and citizens of other countries around the world.  EFF provided numerous evidence of swipping and unathorized spying by NSA on Americans supported by three NSA whistleblowers, AT&T employees who blew the whistle on AT&T "cooperating" with the agency treating it more like its best customer at the expanse of other customers and happily violating their Constitutional right to privacy.
   EFF assembled incredible collection of the supporting documents like, for example, FY 2013 Congressional Budget Summary February 2012 National Intelligence Program Summary ("black budget") one page of which is presented below.

  If you are still not decided that whether current NSA programs present threat to the your and other Americans Freedom look through more of this documents to realize the trues scope of these activities and think about whether you said ever something to your friends that could be used against you or construed as you broke a law or whether you have to think twice every time you are on the phone what are you saying and how it can be interpreted.
   We all ought to come together and say to the Congress and to the Government - enough is enough! We want to live in Democracy and not in totalitarian state! We demand from you to respect and uphold American Constitution as you swore to do! We cherish and treasure our rights and freedoms that are guaranteed by the Constitution and which you cannot take away from us! So, please, join your fellow citizens and sign the petition demanding from the Congress and President to review NSA programs and bring it back under the law!


Do you believe NSA call and e-mail tracking programs are constitutional?

5%1 votes
40%8 votes
10%2 votes
45%9 votes

| 20 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  I wonder if Obama knows Clapper lied (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gooderservice, HiKa, YucatanMan

    somebody should tell him.

    Dear NSA: I am only joking.

    by Shahryar on Thu Nov 21, 2013 at 09:22:55 PM PST

  •  I'm a little confused. (0+ / 0-)

    You say:

    We started because we believe that we all have been screwed by lawyers -- politicians, judges, attorneys. We do not believe that all lawyers are bad, but there are more bad lawyers than others.
    So... are their good lawyers or bad lawyers bringing these cases?  
    •  I am sorry that it was not clear (0+ / 0-)

      We do believe that the cases brought by ACLU and EFF are brought by good lawyers, because it was clearly demonstrated that the laws were broken by NSA. That does not, however, mean that the laws were intentionally or criminally broken. It seems that it was more unintended consequences of poorly thought through legal framework. At the time of founding of this country there were no fast or almost instant electronic communications and communications were more specific and narrow in scope. Thus to some degree it was easier to issue warrants because the scope of monitoring was more narrow. Today it is more difficult because technology of communication has changed. However, it does not change the major principal. Plus, it is very easy to make a case that broad scope of communication monitoring increases exponentially amount of information that it takes more time to process and thus easily can lead to inefficient monitoring as it happened on 9/11 when the vital message about the attack was translated several days after attack has happened. Bottom line it is not only bad to go on a finishing expedition because it violates the law and rights of people, but it is also bad for business. One explanation of this expansive approach to data collection is simply job security for NSA employees. At the same time it was correctly noted that at the end NSA missed a "single guy" they should have to look for -- Snowden (I do not want to get into discussion whether Snowden was a bad guy because it is all together another "can of worms"), not to mention Boston marathon bombers and possibly some other truly bad guys.

  •  The Constitution guarantees nothing. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HiKa, divineorder

    The Constitution sets up a framework of government and assigns duties and obligations to our agents. In the addendum, it enumerates a number of prohibitions. Enforcement is up to the citizens and depends largely on the quality of people they hire.
    The Cons' harping on the three branches checking each other is merely designed to cut out the role of the citizens, except as occasional rubber stamps in choosing their "own poison," so to speak. In the Cons' playbook, democracy is nothing more than a mechanism for selecting rotating tyrants/dictators/deciders/potentates, whose whims are not arbitrary because they are encoded in laws.
    The Cons have twisted the law into an instrument of subordination and coercion. The evidence of that on the floor of the Senate was quite blatant. Granted, we missed the evolution of this perversion because it was largely hidden by arcane procedures and liberals are too damned nice.

    By the way, law suits are nice, but keep in mind that courts have no enforcement powers. Courts rely on the executive to restrain evil doers. The only recourse against do nothing stewards is to remove them from office.

    Obamacare at your fingertips: 1-800-318-2596; TTY: 1-855-889-4325

    by hannah on Fri Nov 22, 2013 at 02:44:02 AM PST

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