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Bush Panopticon

He knows when you've been sleeping, He knows when you're awake...

Ashcroft comes out for granting retroactive im[p|m]unity to the telcos, now that he's their paid consultant

Let's start with the bio:

John Ashcroft was the United States attorney general from 2001 to 2005. He now heads a consulting firm that has telecommunications companies as clients.

Hey, I wonder if Ashcroft's firm funnelled any money to Rockefeller? That would be too, too funny, wouldn't it?

And now the nut graf from Crisco Johnny's at-this-point entirely predictable Op-Ed from the Times:

If the attorney general of the United States says that an intelligence-gathering operation has been determined to be lawful...

Note the very revealing use of the passive voice. Determined by whom? Some Federalist Society operative chained up in Cheney's dungeon under the Naval Observatory?

We know that Bush bypassed the "sole means" for determining legality, the FISA Court, until 2006, when Democrats got elected to Congress. So, when the telcos were briefed that Bush's program of warrantless surveillance was legal, did they ask "Who made the determination and why?" If they did, I want to know the answer, and so should Congress. If they did not, they were negligent, and should be held to account.

... a company should be able to rely on that determination.

Isn't it pretty to think so.

"Should," indeed, except in the unlikely event that the government has been taken over by a gang of criminals.

Like now. Read below the fold...

chicago dyke's picture

Whois to be Scrapped?

I am not a techie and I have no idea if this is a good or bad idea. Your thoughts? From the Globe:
Read below the fold...

chicago dyke's picture

TSA Strikes Again! Brit Gov't Minister Detained

It is to laugh:

LONDON -- Britain's first Muslim government minister said he was "deeply disappointed" Monday after his luggage was searched for explosives at a United States airport as he returned from official talks.

International Development Minister Shahid Malik was detained for about 40 minutes at Washington Dulles airport Sunday by the Department of Homeland Security after meeting officials from the same department to discuss terrorism.

Read below the fold...
Sarah's picture

Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies

I bet you never heard ol' Marshall Dillon say

Miss Kitty have you ever thought of running away

And settling down, would you marry me

If I asked you twice and begged you pretty please?

Aw, she'd have said yes in a New York minute,

they never tied the knot. His heart wasn't in it,

He just stole a kiss and rode away,

never hung his hat up at Kitty's place.

Shoulda been a cowboy

Shoulda learned to rope and ride.

Wearing my six-shooter,

Ridin' my pony on a cattle drive.

Stealing a young girl's heart just like Gene and Roy.

Singin' those campfire songs ... shoulda been a cowboy!


Slow but steady progress to internal passport controls

Via the impolitic:

Via John Cole's comment section, more proof of the impending police state.

Read below the fold...

Was the NSA fire at Fort Meade set deliberately, to create a contract vehicle for Project Groundbreaker?

Project Groundbreaker is* the NSA program we've been discussing here, that taps into all Internet traffic, foreign and domestic, voice and data.

And in Empty Wheel's excellent NSA timeline we have this intriguing data point: Read below the fold...

Even worse than we imagined: AT&T contract for NSA to surveill all internet traffic, foreign and domestic, started before 9/11

That's all Internet traffic, foreign and domestic, data and voice. And the decision to do this was taken, not because of 9/11, but as soon as Bush took office. As was the decision to ignore the rule of law. So much for the idea that the extremely benevolent and trustworthy Bush administration was reacting to 9/11, and just wants "surgical" surveillance* to keep us safe from terrorists, eh? Read below the fold...

Sarah's picture

Who's On That "Government Teat"? Blackwater!

First Blackwater attacks Air Force Officers. Next, they lie about "returning fire" in Iraq. Then, they lie about what kind of money they're making undermining the US Military abroad. From a Dkos Diary on Prince's testimony, Tennessee Congressman John Duncan reveals the escalation in costs of Blackwater's services during the past three fiscal years: Read below the fold...

Ruth's picture

Hold Your Nose, The Economy Just Took Another Dive

In this booming economy which is so full of promise that we can hardly keep U.S. consumers from beating down the doors at the malls to buy the Holy Stuff ... more great news.

The service sector, where the burger flippers who used to sell you sub-prime mortgages or manufacture your American cars or something silly like that, took a dive. Read below the fold...

Sarah's picture

"Against ALL Enemies, Foreign and Domestic"

From the invaluable Froomkin, a reference to the horrors of the Bu$h legacy in government: DOMINIONISTS everywhere. Read below the fold...

chicago dyke's picture

Blackwater Meets Code Pink

Everyone needs a Mother Jones subscription. There's a great deal in this piece, but here's what really gets my attention:
Read below the fold...

Sarah's picture

What If It's NOT About OIl -- What If It's Bigger $$: Drugs

Prohibition drives up prices.
Oil is a finite, and dwindling, resource.

Afghanistan's poppy production now leads the world. Read below the fold...

Sarah's picture

Bush: "If I Crashed, Where's the Plane?"


"You crashed a jet while you were in the National Guard because you were drunk." He spread his hands. "That's easy," he said. "Where's the plane?"

src=""> Read below the fold...

Sarah's picture

CBS, CNN, $$$, & Bush: How Dan Rather, and we, got shafted


CBS owned 41% of broadcast media, in clear violation of Federal law, in 2000. CNN sat at the crossroads of a merger AOL and Time Warner wanted, for profits; but the Clinton FTC didn't let it happen. Along comes W, promising less regulation, and the stage was set. Suddenly all the media had a bottom-line motive for scuttling any political opponent of W. Not just "mainstream media" but the ENTIRE news industry: W promised them PROFIT$. Read below the fold...


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