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One Year Ago ...

... in its 2013 June 06 UK edition, The Guardian published an article by Greenwald, MacAskill & Ackerman, "NSA collecting phone records of millions of Verizon customers daily", alleging mass-surveillance of Americans under a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) order requiring the company to hand over meta data of all calls for a specified period. While this followed the 2006 revelation of warrantless wire tapping by the Bush administration, the fact the order authorized targeting American citizens for mass-surveillance came as a surprise, as did the possession of a secret order compelling compliance and gagging Verizon disclosure.

Later that day, Washington Post and The Guardian published articles outlining the NSA PRISM program, by which the agency conducted global mass-surveillance on the internet of foreign and US citizens by accessing the servers of internet service providers, again citing secret documents including pages from PRISM Program slide decks internally documenting the program. More alarming still, it implied cooperation by major US corporations including Apple, Facebook, Google, Skype, Yahoo and others, which they quickly denied.

Trigger Alert: Powerpoint Train Wreck Ahead

June 8, The Guardian reported another secret NSA program in, Boundless Informant: the NSA's secret tool to track global surveillance data, complete with NSA heat maps showing the density of data collected, country by country around the globe, including the USA.

Where were they getting this secret information?

As Washington reeled from the disclosures, The Guardian reveled the source on June 9, naming a US citizen, Edward Snowden, age 29, as the source of the leaks.

As I stepped out into an early morning thunderstorm in Hong Kong June 11 and grabbed a copy of the SCMP, I suddenly came face to face with Mr. Snowden …

… well almost, as he sat in his room at The Mira Hotel 500m up the road and I slogged though the rain to the MTR station.

Memoranda and questions after the fold.

And then ...

In the months that followed, we learned through reports in The Guardian, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Der Spiegal and The Intercept as well as the constant stream of news from other publications, electronic media and blogs that (just to mention a few key points) :

•  NSA and it's UK counterpart, GCHQ (General Communications Headquarters), two of The Five Eyes, have a very close working relationship including collaborative efforts to hack global telecommunications and internet networks using physical intercepts and all manner of software bugs, malware, man in the middle attacks, phishing, honeypot & waterhole schemes, spoof websites and botnets one normally associates with internet crime syndicates

•  NSA and GCHQ conduct quid pro quo spying on each others's citizens to circumvent civil liberty and privacy laws, including US Constitutional rights

•  NSA has extensively hacked the IT infrastructure of various sovereign states, friend and foe alike, including telecom infrastructure, banking systems, government networks, major universities and major commercial corporations

•  GCHQ aided and paid by NSA physically hacked into more than 200 leased-line and trans-oceanic fiber-optic cables to install splitters to divert raw data streams from servers to obtain unencrypted plain text data in transit or in-process between data centers, including NSA hacking of lease-line cables linking internal Google servers to gain unencrypted email and user data in clear text

•  In addition to the usual Cold War style diplomatic spying outposts, NSA and GCHQ have conducted widespread surveillance and bugging of EU governmental organizations, the UN, various NGOs and numerous trade and treaty negotiation sessions, particularly those hosted in the US and UK

•  NSA has carried out widespread bugging of the personal telephones and computers used by foreign government leaders and heads of state, friend and foe alike, including close allies such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel

•  NSA TAO physically intercepts computing and IT infrastructure equipment manufactured by American companies including Cisco Systems routers to install physical bugs, malware, relay beacons and BIOS hacks to gain access to the systems of customers and evade detection, even if software is upgraded; specific server firewall hacks include IRONCHEF for HP Proliant, FEEDTHROUGH for Juniper, JETPLOW for Cisco and HEADWATER for Huawei (suggesting, ironically, one not buy Chinese servers to avoid becoming an NSA spying target)

•  Working covertly with the US NIST, the foremost and most respected scientific standards organization in the world, NSA inserted engineered vulnerabilities in data encryption standards to make them easier to decode and gain access, thereby undermining the security of global data systems including banking systems, and paid major IT security company RSA millions to include compromised crypto in their products

•  Researched, harvested and purchased (for millions) "Zero Day Exploits" or computer application code defects unknown to the public or software publishers that enable NSA to exploit vulnerabilities to gain access to systems, while putting the public at risk

•  NSA and FBI collaborated to provide information on US citizens obtained under FISA warrants to the IRS and DEA, including advising them how to "scrub" the information by filing warrants retroactively to "discover" the information through legal channels

•  NSA developed means to harvest address books and "buddy lists" from social media and gain access to accounts to plant false information and pornography to discredit or compromise users, utilizing spoof browser cookies to track and spy on users

•  NSA and FBI developed hacks to access data in smartphones and PCs and to gain undetectable access to control microphones and cameras to spy on owners in private, including hacks for iPhone, Android and Blackberry devices



•  NSA tracks millions of mobile phones obtaining billions of transaction records that enable them to track geolocation, and harvests millions of text messages for analysis daily from these same systems

•  In an apparent research and demonstration project, NSA intercepts and analyzes the entire data flow of the Bahamas mobile phone network

•  NSA is compiling an ever growing archive of images taken from the internet and analyzed by facial recognition software to match facial image mapping data to personal identifiers and has hacked into the government ID databases of sovereign nations to obtain massive amounts of photo ID and personal data

And while doing so, has concealed, misdirected and lied to the public and elected officials about it all. Of course there is much more, but isn't this enough for us to consider the implications? Isn’t this already more than we can process?

"Collect it all, sniff it all, process it all, exploit it all"

That is how, in a moment of candor, the NSA described its mission and methods, and that has been the goal of its last leader, General Keith Alexander, for almost two decades. Alexander was capitvated by the idea having it all long before 9-11 handed him the keys to the kingdom and carte blanche to spend billions on an IT infrastructure construction binge to realize his dream. School lunch programs should be so lucky.

But what has that bought?  And at what cost?

The standard argument starts and ends with one word: TERRORISM.

The lives of Americans, the American experience, the defining characteristic of the nation is now TERRORISM. And the irrational fear and reflexive reactions that engenders.

FDR must be rolling in his grave. Fear finally won.

So has this mass-survellience worked? Do we have objective evidence?

No. Piling the hay higher and faster hasn't helped to find more needles.

The sad fact is, NSA cannot actually point to a single significant case where the pervasive mass-surveillance deployed since 9-11 has stopped a single incidence of terrorism and their claims to Congress of doing so have not stood-up to scrutiny. Just more lies and mis-direction from professional liars (that is part and parcel of their job, so why would we expect anything different?).

Indeed, as close as it gets is something that should cause any thinking person to stop dead in their tracks and wonder how far in the opposite direction this leads: the fact that metadata obtained using electronic surveillance by the NSA has been used as the basis to assassinate unidentified persons suspected of terrorist activities using remotely controlled drones in kills authorized by the President of the USA.

Remove the stars and stripes and exceptional goodness and what do we find?

Dare I say the word TERRORISM?

I’d better not or I’ll lose the audience, but it’s conceivable some people would see it that way, and never forget it.

Instead I’ll ask:

•  Is that the example the US wants to set for the world?
•  Is that how we define the future of politics by other means?
•  With technology that does not require yellow cake or aluminum tubes?
•  Having demonstrated what not to do with atomic weapons, is the US now providing an object lesson in the perils of cyber-warfare? Or of a modern surveillance state?

Perhaps many people applaud that and are willing to have that done in their name with no more thought than they give to surrendering their privacy, due process and other civil rights, because they don't believe it affects them.

But do you accept them surrendering your name and your rights? Who asked and who agreed?

Never mind the rest of us. Really.

I can’t speak for America. Those are not my rights and that is not in my name.

But I can say this: we now know that in the eyes of the US government, the only rights that matter are the rights of Americans and only when they demand them. With conditions.

The rest of us have no rights.

Despite all the sweet talk about respect, nobility, exceptionalism and that warm and fuzzy "good public debate", the message the rest of the world has gotten is a raised middle finger.
We get it. Message received.

So what about the cost?

Finally, if we reduce American interests in the rest of the world to economic interest, it is time to take stock of where this is leading the US in the global community.

This is what has the US IT industry running scared; they depend on revenue from a global market dominated by Americana companies and they see that slipping away. Finally, after abusing the dominant position of the US, the NSA is killing the goose that laid thier golden egg.

It is already happening; 3 solid quarters of decline in IT infrastructure equipment and even dominant services like Google are beginning to feel the squeeze.

They have lobbied, they have meet at the White House, CEOs have written public letters to appeal directly to the President to please get this under control, but it has not happened.

Instead, Obama all but ignored the recommendations of his hand picked task force, paid lip service to the concerns of civil libertarians and the IT industry, kicked the ball to Congress to “reform” and then lobbied hard to ensure that did not happen. Not this year. Maybe not this term. Maybe never.

So this industry is doing the only thing it can, to play defense by raising the cost of survellience by moving toward the “Dark Net” of encryption the security communitity has been fighting for decades, but it will be a legal and technical arms race, and one where the competition may take strategic advantage to preserve their rule of law and pursue their economic intersts.

Much has been said about the undesirability of a “Balkenized” internet and how that would restrict commerce and the free flow of information, but is does not look the same on both sides of the fence, and the meteoric rise of internet commerce in China (minus the unlimited freedom of speech) proves a point not lost on the industry if it is on the government (and I think that is the situation).

But then, what has the IT industry done for anyone lately?

Most of us don’t get paid for blogging, so do we really have a stake in this internet thing?

Thanks for reading one year of pent-up commentary. Happy Snowden Day!

What say you?

** Update 2014.06.06 **

I want to clarify and add a few points:

•  The dates and times I refer to for publications are the LOCAL DATE of the publication included in the byline or link time stamp. Generally, this means a morning publication by The Guardian (UK) or Der Spiegal (Germany) may be one day ahead of US publications such as NYT or WaPo. Thanks to freakofsociety for catching my dating error for the first item, corrected to 2013.

•  A lot of the discussion went off-topic to China and the concurrent 25th anniversary of the Tian'anmen incident June 05. As the diarist, I don't mind this and think the question is fair game given the fact we have a Chinese  discussing American surveillance, so why not the reverse?  
So why did I chose one and not the other?  

First, I think my diary topic is timely and current and of interest to the site readership, which is mainly American, not Chinese.

Second, Chinese tend to view Tian'anmen somewhat differently than Western people, who see it as a monolithic defining event of Chinese history. To Chinese, it was a incident that started as a public mourning of a beloved leader, became a labor demonstration and then a student demonstration about class fees (which is generally where it started to get Western attention). What is often missed is the fact it lasted weeks and that the Chinese government negotiated with the students for a long time before hardliners made the fateful decision. It was far longer than any comparable Western demonstration except for Occupy Wall Street, some of which also ended badly with violence and repression. I'd suggest people learn more about the incident and modern Chinese history in general for some perspective.

Third, what was my personal experience? In the mid-80s I attended university in the USA and returned to China in January 1988, spending the remainder of the year in Japan as a company recruit. I passed through Hong Kong in May 1989, the week before it ended. I marched in Central District. Later I took the train from Hong Kong to Shanghai (then a 1.5 day trip), As the talks between students and officials deadlocked, we worried what would happen. I thought they should go home because they had made their point. The day after the square was cleared, on June 06, students and workers marched in Shanghai. Just one day and then everyone went home. We didn't have all the news from Beijing but enough and people were angry.

Lastly: This caused me a period of inward reflection and self-doubt about a lot, but in a couple of years I decided it was just an incident and life moves on. I decided to stay in China because of my family and because I felt responsibility to be a citizen of a society. That what I try to be. Finally, this is a wound on China that will heal and it's Chinese business to face it. I doubt that will happen soon, but I think it will be in the next 10 years. Mostly, we have moved on and forward. Mostly but not totally. Today I have a wife, a daughter and a job that are my main focus, but other interests too. I'm very lucky to travel because of my job and think everywhere there are good and bad things, that is the human condition. It's always good to see more and learn.

•  I found a good article on EFF today: 65 Things We Know About NSA Surveillance That We Didn’t Know a Year Ago, that should be of interest to many. I like EFF because they are serious about their work and work globally to promote a free and open internet, which is a difficult task, but one every Daily Kos member should support.

•  I noticed this got rescued, thanks to my anonymous benefactor!

This is all too long, thanks for reading if you did.

Originally posted to 11111000000 on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 12:30 PM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

Poll

Evil:

44%40 votes
2%2 votes
6%6 votes
4%4 votes
1%1 votes
41%37 votes

| 90 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Excellent. (13+ / 0-)

    Thank you, koNko.

    The US is a leader, alright. If you're into walking off cliffs, that is.




    Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. ~ Garcia

    by DeadHead on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 12:53:21 PM PDT

    •  time for the internet to take back itself (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rktect, DeadHead

      i think the idea that the us government could be so evil comes as a surprise to most of us who live here. i'm sure it still hasn't completely sunk in yet... so it's up to silicon valley to place its info beyond the reach of the nitwits employed in the nsa jobs programs (2 million employees engaged in an utterly worthless enterprise - who says the WPA ideal is dead?). it will be tough for google, yahoo etc. asynchronous encryption means they will have no idea of the data on its servers. and data is what they sell.

      •  The NSA beats Dick Cheney out for EVIL !!! (4+ / 0-)

        First off somebody did a lot of nice charts for this secret project so how many people were walking around in the we know what it does down to the flow chart level clearances before Snowden? How come only Snowden spilled the beans when this whole group knew it was illegally getting it all? That's an evil government.

        Now that we know, maybe it becomes our responsibility to go vote on this.

        "la vida no vale nada un lugar solita" "The Limits of Control Jim Jarmusch

        by rktect on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:52:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I reluctantlyvoted for Cheney. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rktect

          Seriously.  Dick Cheney is evil.  I hate the NSA.  I think it's evil.  But Dick Cheney...

        •  It's quite remarkable and a first (0+ / 0-)

          I've been using Cheney, and to a lesser extent, Vlad the Impaler and/or Rasputin, as proxies for ultimate evil in my Fascist Dickwad Polls for awhile, and this is the first time Cheney has failed to take the Number 1 position.

          Sadly, Vlad the Impaler and Rasputin seem to have fallen behind other vlad/'putin selectors recently, so I'm wondering if there is some kind of Boolean bug in Daily Kos's poll applet.

          Having spent a lot of time researching this subject including all of the slide decks, manuals and other program related information, it's clear that:

          &bul;  NSA employs a lot of pretty bright people
          &bul;  Some of them have a literate and finely tuned, if totally cynical sense of humor
          &bul;  Bagging trophies is important and probably the route to promotion
          &bul;  They generally lack powerpoint design skills

          I'm considering doing a diary on the etymology of Program and Tool Names.

          So, how do you like the Unit Patch emblem in the tip jar?

          None Of Your Fucking Business, LOL

          Hat Tip to Trevor Paglen who published that in his book I Could Tell You But Then You Would Have to be Destroyed by Me I first spied in his 30C3 talk that rocked the house:

          No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

          by koNko on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 06:07:02 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  It has occurred to me that the flow charts and (0+ / 0-)

          success claims for each of the projects reflect a corporate mindset, and I wonder whether each of these programs was developed and sold to the NSA by competing corporations, and the "training power points" were developed by ad agencies.  The claims documented in Greenwald's latest book, exclamation points and all, look more like Mad Men than US Gov't.

          Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

          by StrayCat on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 06:38:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  This has been an eye opener on many fronts. (16+ / 0-)

    BS (before Snowden) it might still have been possible to pretend that globalization was just an impersonal process of the forces of commerce and technology and that claims of a worldwide conspiracy by the financial elite were just left wing delusions. But now we have seen the man behind the first curtain. We have yet to uncover the face of the man behind him, but we will.

    •  Every time I hear this compared to a (3+ / 0-)

      conspiracy of the financial elite, I feel like we're getting way off the subject.  I know, we disagree on this, have before, and will again.  

      Google spying on my porn habits is icky.  The government secretly spying on my contributions to dissident groups like wikileaks is seriously frightening.

  •  Is this the only anniversary you can think of? (2+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, duhban
    Hidden by:
    Jim P

    I thought you, given your location, might have a little more perspective on "taking back the internet".

    hong kong duck photo: Rubber Duck Visits Hong Kong 2 May 13 (Thu) 09.jpg

    Or maybe you, given your location, had better stick to worrying about the mote in the eyes of the US.

    Retrospectives on 25th anniversary of Tiananmen at Chinafile.com

    by Inland on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:22:19 PM PDT

    •  I thought I would stick to current events today (11+ / 0-)

      Looks like China still has a way to go to catch up with the US when it comes to mass-surveillance, doesn't it?

      Let's check back in another 25 years and see how it's going, OK?

      Nice picture of the Rubber Ducky in Victoria Harbor. Unfortunately, Edward Snowden had to vacate his hotel and missed that view.

      Taking back the internet in China is daily sport, but it never hurts to have a swarm of friends or a pair of old shoes.

      Enjoy your anniversary - looks like your side one the first round in Congress. Touché.

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:43:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You should write a diary... (20+ / 0-)

      ...about the anniversary you feel is more important to recognize.

      Expecting others to substitute your preferred anniversary recognition in place of theirs, which in this case happens to be related to a topic you like to troll regularly, seems a bit lazy.




      Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. ~ Garcia

      by DeadHead on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 02:08:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, blog nanny, you missed the point. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        duhban

        I think that if someone is going to have a diary voicing CONCERN over the privacy of non Americans, which is what almost all of the programs reviewed are about, it might behoove them to note the non Americans who didn't have any privacy in the first place. About an eighth of the planet that someone who reads the NYT [blocked you know where] knows about.

        The concern of someone posting from That Place about the concerns of non-Americans to privacy, and somehow missing the monitoring and actual blocking of content there is a real hoot.  Someone isn't as concerned with privacy as they pretend.  Including you.

        By the way, your umpteenth contentless complaint notwithstanding, my sig line no longer taunts you to prove your accusations of trolling, since everyone now knows you're too lazy and scared to do so.  Now it provides you with a good link to review what I think is important.  Please feel free to ignore it and anything else remotely educational.

        Retrospectives on 25th anniversary of Tiananmen at Chinafile.com

        by Inland on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 03:09:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Uh-huh (7+ / 0-)
          Well, blog nanny, you missed the point.
          You call ME a "blog nanny" for simply suggesting you write your own diary, yet your first comment in this diary accomplished more than wagging your finger at the diarist for, as we've now come to learn from you, not having approached the topic in the manner you felt appropriate. If people miss your points, it's because you either don't have any, or they're so poorly articulated that it makes it nearly impossible to do otherwise.  
          I think that if someone is going to have a diary voicing CONCERN over the privacy of non Americans, which is what almost all of the programs reviewed are about, it might behoove them to note the non Americans who didn't have any privacy in the first place. About an eighth of the planet that someone who reads the NYT [blocked you know where] knows about.
          Right, so you're "diary nannying," which is a more specialized version of "blog nannying."
          The concern of someone posting from That Place about the concerns of non-Americans to privacy, and somehow missing the monitoring and actual blocking of content there is a real hoot.
          Except, if you've read any of the diarist's previous commentary here, you would know that he is all too aware of the conditions present in his country — he's mentioned it several times.
          Someone isn't as concerned with privacy as they pretend. Including you.
          Because your previous assertion is false, so is this one. And your including me in that nonsensical gibberish is even more laughable.
          By the way, your umpteenth contentless complaint notwithstanding, my sig line no longer taunts you to prove your accusations of trolling, since everyone now knows you're too lazy and scared to do so.
          I give as much of a shit about your sig line changes now as I did before, which is less-than-zero. Whatever "proof" you expected me to come up with, for whatever the fuck it is you're talking about, isn't necessary when you incriminate yourself on a daily basis. Why do the work when you're already doing it for me? Not that I don't have several of your more epic recent meltdowns readily accessible — I most certainly do.
          Now it provides you with a good link to review what I think is important. Please feel free to ignore it and anything else remotely educational.
          And yet, you don't even know how to make it into a clickable link. Awesome.

          Bye bye.




          Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. ~ Garcia

          by DeadHead on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 04:45:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I should be free to chose any topic (8+ / 0-)

          I certainly am certainly reading a lot about Tian'an'men by Americans and Europeans this week, more than you are reading about the NSA from China I suppose.

          Who is being the net nanny now?

          Notice one thing; more of the comments on this thread, including most of yours, are actually off-topic of the diary and potentially a thread highjack, and yet, I invite, encourage and entertain this discussion.

          Just as I always do. Because we're all volunteers here, right.

          Do as you wish. Your choice.

          What strikes me as pretty funny is how obsessive Americans are about web etiquette and discipline, you guys would get really distressed blogging in China because it is much more free-ranging and often a lot more raw.

          More memes and idioms, fewer rules of engagement.

          No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

          by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:37:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  It is also (12+ / 0-)

      the anniversary of the Normandy invasion. Why aren't all worked up about that?

    •  You care so much about China that you've (8+ / 0-)

      never written a single comment or diary on the issue except to scold people about how horrible China is and how the US clearly does nothing wrong.

      No War but Class War

      by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:40:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If you want to write about Tianmen Square (13+ / 0-)

      feel free to do so.  Otherwise your comment is a trollish attempt at a highjacking, close to HR-worthy.  And yes, I read your retorts to Deadhead below; and no, the fact that the author may be in China does not diminish one thing said in the diary about the NSA.

      You can tell Monopoly is an old game because there's a luxury tax and rich people can go to jail.

      by Simian on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:42:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm writing about surveillance of non Americans. (0+ / 0-)

        That's the topic of the diary.  If it was "the US is bad", then yes, I went off topic.  So sue me.

        Retrospectives on 25th anniversary of Tiananmen at Chinafile.com

        by Inland on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:34:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No you aren't (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan

          You're writing about censorship in China, which is different than surveillance.

          No War but Class War

          by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:51:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's both. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            duhban

            Something is scanning social media, electronic communications to find out what to block.  

            Real world security is matched by online monitoring. In recent days, many of Google’s services, including Gmail and Google Search, have been blocked in China. On Sina Weibo, searches for “Tiananmen” (天安门), “square” (广场), and “mourn” (悼念) are blocked, returning only the notice that the results cannot be displayed due to “the relevant laws, regulations, and policies.” Netizens continually invent code words to get around this block, in turn expanding the censors’ search term blacklist. Nevermind looking up June 4th, or “Six Four” (六四) as it is commonly called -- even “May 35th” (五月三十五) is blocked. June 4th remains perhaps the most taboo subject in the media and online in China, and netizens’ efforts to skirt censorship to discuss it demonstrate their will to keep the memory alive.
            http://www.theguardian.com/...

            Retrospectives on 25th anniversary of Tiananmen at Chinafile.com

            by Inland on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:01:56 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's censorship (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DeadHead, CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan

              We were talking about Us surveillance, not censorship.

              Please try to keep up.

              No War but Class War

              by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:09:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  In fact, most blocking is Chinese language sites (6+ / 0-)

              Because that is he language most people use.

              And it is both dynamic and predictable. During certain times, plus and minus a few days, certain content will be blocked as it appears in a URL or a site blacklist.

              There is NOT filtering of all data.

              Proof:
              Real world security is matched by online monitoring. In recent days, many of Google’s services, including Gmail and Google Search, have been blocked in China. On Sina Weibo, searches for “Tiananmen” (天安门), “square” (广场), and “mourn” (悼念) are blocked, returning only the notice that the results cannot be displayed due to “the relevant laws, regulations, and policies.” Netizens continually invent code words to get around this block, in turn expanding the censors’ search term blacklist. Nevermind looking up June 4th, or “Six Four” (六四) as it is commonly called -- even “May 35th” (五月三十五) is blocked. June 4th remains perhaps the most taboo subject in the media and online in China, and netizens’ efforts to skirt censorship to discuss it demonstrate their will to keep the memory alive
              .
              Original received in China, quoted and sent from China, and (unless you are blocked) broadcast from China out.

              And since we know this site is not encrypted, how is that possible?

              You are learning.

              No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

              by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:02:36 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I'm OK with this (8+ / 0-)

            Really, it's better to discuss anything in substance then get hung up on maintaining thread purity.

            I actually welcome a broad discussion about internet freedom, which is under attack globally.

            My raising the issue of NSA spying in no way disqualified others from discussing the Chinese firewall and I welcome both.

            The difference here is in no way do I try to use NSA spying as a means to deny the other and that was not my intent in writing this diary. If some people imagine that, it is in their own heads, not mine.

            Nothing said here about China, accurate or not, negates the facts of what I included in this diary and people can react as they will and even totally ignore the issues I raise, which says something in itself.

            But maybe I'm strange in the sense I'm against having too many rules for expression and find the HR system really childish and counter-productive (glad to know it will be changed in the next version of this site).

            Because ... censorship. I do live with that. I do have to deal with that. It's not all that much fun. And the US is sending people to jail for speaking out too.

            All of that is bad.

            No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

            by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:55:00 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  And so did I (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, DeadHead, CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan

          As I noted elsewhere, I'm lucky enough to get surveilled by both countries.

          No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

          by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:43:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  oh (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DeadHead, CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan

      you again.

      If I can't dance I don't want to be part of your revolution. ~ Emma Goldman

      by Lady Libertine on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:56:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think it's past time. (13+ / 0-)

    Just can't fathom how to go about it.  It's for sure those in control are not going to give it up. And since they have such control, how do we circumvent it to bring the necessary change?

    Be the change you want to see in the world. -Gandhi

    by DRo on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:27:52 PM PDT

    •  A:person to person and pencil and paper.Penmanship (6+ / 0-)

      I predict that there will come a day when handwritten documents like bills of sale will be illegal and small change will be contraband. If it ain't digitized it won't be legal. No bartering, no nuthin'. How else could they keep any records to scoop up?

      Way back in 1997 my hubby said put up or shut up: what's your prediction? So I put a date on it then, way back in the previous millenium. I said see all these State Quarters? Get 'em now. That's your hint that after this collectors edition it's all goin' away. Twenty-five years, I said then. How close are we now?

      I still know how to do my job by hand when the power goes out.

      We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

      by nuclear winter solstice on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:18:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  That's exactly what's going on. (24+ / 0-)

    Rebuilding the internet architecture with a backbone that completely bypasses routing through the US, kicked off in April at the summit in Brazil.

    It's already been funded, and there are many nations involved, since they will be extending the major nodes into their regions.


    ___________
    My Latest: Bowe Bergdahl : The Long Road Home. Evolved Human Consciousness in Action.

    by Pluto on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:32:10 PM PDT

    •  A story about BRICS Cable (17+ / 0-)

      BRICS countries are building a "new Internet" hidden from NSA

      Sounds like it will be difficult to maintain the integrity of the system because the US Navy will constantly be working to tap into the cable.

      Still it's worth the effort IMO.

      My invisible imaginary friend is the "true" creator

      by Mr Robert on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:41:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Considering that the USA spying community has (12+ / 0-)

      demonstrated that physical hacking is not beneath them, anything built can be compromised from a hardware perspective.

      I'm not aware of any software-based defense against physical taps of optical cable, so they'll need to consider physical "sensors" which make opening cable bundles difficult to accomplish without triggering an alarm (and, that the alarm can be traced to specific locations, can be quickly investigated and the intrusion line(s) re-enabled before saboteurs do all that to remove remote detection of their physical access to the fibres).

      "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

      by wader on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 02:51:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It is done at relay junctions (9+ / 0-)

        Most tapping of undersea optical cables is actually done as they are landed and in the case of the USA-UK partnership, apparently more in the UK. But even undersea cables have relay junctions to boost signal and my understanding and expectation is that these can be hacked through the junctions and amplifiers, and the some cables have been tapped undersea.

        The US has been tapping it's own infrastructure for years using Narus boxes in switching centers, which use an optical splitter junction to tap off a raw stream and a junction, and buffer the data for analysis and storage, with the filtering done after the fiber to copper conversion and before mass storage.

        In fact, an optical stream is physically easy to tap with a "Y" splitter, and within optical switches, this is a basic technique used for multiplexing operations.

        Depending on how a Narus box is programmed (number of selectors) there can be bottle necking of the process requiring more nodes of analysis, more buffer storage or sacrificing some overflow. Hence, Bluffdale, UT.

        I got into some of this in a previous diary here.

        No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

        by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:24:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, I understand (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Pluto

          My point is that locating the tap is rather difficult, even with proactive surveillance methods.

          "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

          by wader on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:50:07 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  so they will route it though SORM (0+ / 0-)

      and whatever China uses?

      Talk about not having a clue. That assumes of course this actually happens which I remain absurdly skeptical about given the construction involved.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 03:26:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  HAving it go to Russia and China (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko, CroneWit, stevemb, Pluto

        on one end is not routing it through those places. It's reasonable to assume anything coming out of Russia or China is monitored  anyway, so have them on one end won't make much of a difference unless they're going to have idiotic routing protocols that send the data way out of the way.

        No War but Class War

        by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:44:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  um yes it is (0+ / 0-)

          Both China and Russia have stringent demands on controlling what goes though them and China especially demands the right to any crypto keys it wants for traffic in china.

          As for Russia you are aware that SORM is hardlined into the  Russian internet right? That by law it must be installed at the providers expense?

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:03:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  If there on the end then nothing (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Pluto, CroneWit, stevemb

            goes through them. Or I should say that nothing goes through them that wouldn't already be heavily monitored. So it won't make anything worse.

            No War but Class War

            by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:13:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  just what is your argument here? (0+ / 0-)

              Because I've read your comment a couple times and it seems contradictory at best. Never mind that the point of my comment is that Russia and China are far and away worse than the US so the goal of 'freeing' the internet is to route traffic though those nations?

              Um well enjoy that I guess.

              Der Weg ist das Ziel

              by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:42:47 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The point is that the planned pipe (4+ / 0-)

                will not make Brazil more vulnerable to Russia or China listening in. In fact, it will make Brazil, and other countries, less vulnerable to surveillance than they are now because the only way China or Russia gets info is if it is going to one of those countries.

                so they will route it though SORM (0+ / 0-)
                and whatever China uses?

                Talk about not having a clue. That assumes of course this actually happens which I remain absurdly skeptical about given the construction involved.

                This was your comment. It's not clueless to route these things to countries that have surveillance if they are at the end of the line. It's not clueless at all.

                No War but Class War

                by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:12:15 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  considering that at least there's (0+ / 0-)

                  the appearance of rule of law in the US if not the fact that there actually is I'd say that you are dead wrong there.

                  In point of fact Brazil  would likely be even less secure but that's Brazil's mistake to make.

                  Der Weg ist das Ziel

                  by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:13:59 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Every single thing that goes through the US (7+ / 0-)

                    get sucked up. And there are no restrictions on looking at foreign data, so there's no legal protection.

                    the appearance of rule of law in the US
                    There is no appearance of rule of law in the US. Our justice system is blatantly racism and classist, and we have prosecuted no one for the massive amount of torture that happened even though it was against the law. Only a naive fool would think we have  anything resembling rule of law.

                    No War but Class War

                    by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:22:25 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  pretty sure you can not back that up (0+ / 0-)

                      and more over I think you're confusing scanning meta data (which is after all public) and what Russia and China actually do.

                      Which means whether your statement is true or false you're still wrong.

                      Der Weg ist das Ziel

                      by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:31:06 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Back up what? n/t (3+ / 0-)

                        No War but Class War

                        by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:35:10 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  that claim of everything (0+ / 0-)

                          we know Russia and China not only monitor everything but do deep packet inspection among many other things. The best proof you got is the US engages in meta inspection. That's not even close to comparable.

                          Der Weg ist das Ziel

                          by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:37:35 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Right, keep up the charade (6+ / 0-)

                            Deny, deny, deny!

                            You clearly didn't bother to read the diary.

                            I must say that I'm really happy none of the comment threads in this diary have turned into discussions of Snowden. It's really nice to be arguing about something substantial for a change.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:41:34 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  the only charade here is you (0+ / 0-)

                            pretending you have a clue about actual censorship and monitoring on the internet.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:53:09 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Actually ... (6+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            DeadHead, CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan, Pluto, melo

                            You make many assertions and never seem to back them up with facts so this argument gets completely ridiculous.

                            I think if I ever see you publish a well-researched and cited diary on the subject I may need immediate medical attention.

                            The reason I can't rec your comments is not that I never rec things I disagree with, is that you are notoriously partisan in your arguments on this subject, never really back up main assertions and always resort to petty arguments and name calling such as this thread exhibits.

                            If you monitor my own remarks here (Dkos in general) I think you will find:

                            (a) I will back up my claims
                            (b) admit when I am mistaken
                            (c) admit when an adversary in a debate makes a valid point
                            (d) rec and try to give credit for responsible, substantive arguments even when I disagree with some conclusions

                            Because that is how we can learn.

                            Suggest you try a little harder to use facts, you might find a more positive response from myself and others.

                            No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

                            by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 11:08:55 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Guy's an Idoru (6+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            koNko, AoT, CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan, DeadHead

                            You're talking to a program.


                            ___________
                            My Latest: Bowe Bergdahl : The Long Road Home. Evolved Human Consciousness in Action.

                            by Pluto on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 11:32:30 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I have done nothing but provide links (0+ / 0-)

                            if you refuse to read them that's on you. That said it's hilarious to watch you complain about me being 'notoriously partisan' when in fact you continue this lie that China has a better record on privacy, free speech and a free net than the US.

                            You've backed up nothing here and you've certainly not admitted anything on the massive mistakes you've been making. In sort I see nothing reasonable about you on this topic and while I generally did enjoy your diary (to the point that I did actually recommend some of your comments) I still find your demands on the US strange and unreasonable not to mention clearly that you have a bias whether it's pro China or anti USA I can't say but your bias is showing every time you dig your head in the sand.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:07:26 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  My, how unusual! (3+ / 0-)

                            duhban insulting people while marching to the right margin in his fervent defense of the NSA!

                            CUZ CHINA!

                            Can someone get a screen shot?- this may never happen again!

                          •  oh look another one (0+ / 0-)

                            I'm curious did you say the same thing to AoT?

                            Don't worry you're being a good member of your group.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:19:12 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  The "not duhban" group. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Pluto

                            Choco8 is, indeed, a member in good standing.




                            Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. ~ Garcia

                            by DeadHead on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:18:34 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

          •  Huawei (8+ / 0-)

            Is the only telecom equipment provider that has opened it's systems and source code to inspection, but I suspect in the near future that others will have to submit to this because now it is clear US made equipment or anything they gain access to may be compromised. Even the CEO of Cisco, the loudest complainer, now has to admit it's systems have been compromised by the US government and everything they accused the Chinese government of doing to Huawei and ZTE was actually done by the NSA to themselves.

            If you missed the letter from Chambers to Obama it is linked in the diary.  

            Many accusations have been made about Chinese equipment outside China and none proven EXCEPT hacks by the NSA TAO to implant physical hacks and malware. This I also state in the diary.

            Maybe you should go back and actually read the diary above and also do a bit more research on the topics you are raising instead of speculating.

            And by all means, feel free to research and publish your findings in your own diary.

            Hard work builds character.

            No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

            by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:47:07 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  let's be honest here (0+ / 0-)

              Hauwei opened up it's systems only because it wants to do business in the US but it's certainly not allowed to because it's considered a pipeline to intellectual theft and spying.

              I've done a lot of research on this topic and you're cherry picking your data and your facts (and that's the kindest interpretation for you glossing over rampant spying by China and intellectual theft).

              I also agree hard work builds character but you should practice what you preach.

              Der Weg ist das Ziel

              by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:22:29 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Generally routers take the cheapest path (9+ / 0-)

          And just because Chinese suppliers build cables or routers doesn't put them in control of them. What protocols to use on Tier 1 routers is something the operators decide, and in the case of China, SOME of the infrastructure and traffic is restricted but most is not and is well-proven by the number of systems hacks from outside China, particularly the NSA.

          You sound somewhat knowledgeable, so if you understand traffic management and load leveling, you will probably agree if flows by the cheapest route not the shortest route within the Tier 1 (and locally Tier 2) infrastructure. I'm sure you also realize, that by definition, no general internet devices are air spaced, so virtually all are vulnerable to hacks to some degree or another.

          However, at this point, Huawei equipment is the most inspected and vetted in the world, and despite the fear mongering and blacklisting which has locked them out of the US and Australian markets, there has never been a bug found in their products including the software, which the opened the code to EU (particularly UK) customers for test.

          However, as noted in the diary, Huawei routers have been hacked by NDA TAO so it is actually possible some are at risk and they end up being tainted by the same crap as Cisco, Juniper et al.

          So, what we can expect in the future, is that all infrastructure equipment will be inspected as it is sold between countries and if it is done well, then it will be a good thing for everyone.

          If Huawei cannot be trusted, neither can Alcatel, Ericsson, Cisco or whomever. Let's assume any and all could be bugged or corrupted and do the work, make the standards and conduct the tests.

          And as citizens, let's not trust our own governments more than we can control them.

          All of the above is reasonable based on the facts on hand.

          No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

          by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 10:59:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  This raises something I've been considering (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            stevemb, YucatanMan, lotlizard

            From a consumer perspective, and as a typical nobody, the Chinese govt should have little to no interest in what I say or do and should therefore have little to no interest in spying on my network activity.  In contrast, the US govt has demonstrated an interest in spying on all US citizens.  Similarly, the Chinese manufacturers have an interest in keeping the US from spying on their equipment.  I also assume the same would hold true if we reverse the parties.

            As a consumer, would it be in my interests to buy Chinese or other foreign made networking equipment over that of US made?  In particular would it be in my interests to buy from a country that does not knowingly partner with the US Intelligence system?

            despite the fear mongering and blacklisting which has locked them out of the US and Australian markets
            Not on the part of the little people like me.  The being blocked out of the markets also takes on another perspective in light of my comments above.

            "It's not surveillance, it's data collection to keep you safe"

            by blackhand on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 06:36:25 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Effective way of "voting with one's dollars," or, (0+ / 0-)

              … in a virtual sense, "voting with one's feet" via symbolic "emigration" from a certain nationalistic bubble of fact-free faux naïveté about the way these things work.

              The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

              by lotlizard on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:03:30 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Map reedin iz hard (5+ / 0-)


        ___________
        My Latest: Bowe Bergdahl : The Long Road Home. Evolved Human Consciousness in Action.

        by Pluto on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:57:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Huawei has laid numerous cables between (8+ / 0-)

        Europe and Africa and is a major supplier of systems in the region including to Orange and Telefonica, which have huge investments in Africa and are building infrastructure around the region.

        Why would you doubt Chinese ability to engineer optical fiber technology and infrastructure?

        Dude, a Chinese invented the technology to realize digital fiber optic communication and solved the problem in a typical Chinese fashion, by turning a limitation into a strength (i.e., the invention of fiber cladding).

        English and American scientists were tearing their hair out trying to make perfect glass materials when the answer was staring them in the face.

        China and Russia have lots of technology and, incredibly, the ability to reason.

        No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

        by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:35:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  that's not my point at all (0+ / 0-)

          I don't trust China and it's paranoid leaders to not intercept everything though it's pipes. Or for that matter extend the same demands about access to crypto keys or any of the other bizarre actions China has done in the name of censorship.

          And while it's very offtopic you realize it was in a Western lab with a Western education? I mean I'm starting to realize you like to sweep facts under the rug but I really don't see how any of this relates to my point.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:49:16 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I understand (7+ / 0-)

            That you mistrust China and Chinese, and that you dismiss any possible reason to mistrust the USA. Your partisanship on this is frequently on display and definitely impacts your reasoning regardless of facts to the contrary. I'll give you a lot of credit for consistency on this.

            Now, regarding the invention in question, you realize it was a Chinese educated Chinese person who subsequently attended a UK university and was invited to a UK company to work on a scientific problem that was being considered by people from various countries and was solved in his brain not theirs?

            Your attempt to claim this as yours is so typical of your anti-Chinese bias and Western chauvinism that it's laughable.

            And why I say Charles Kao made a "Chinese" solution, is that, not only is he actually Chinese, but a typical value and feature of Chinese culture is the combination of practical opportunity and observation with a heavy dose of lateral thinking.

            When we invented the printing press we did movable type at the same time; what took you guys so long?

            Sometimes we actually have a slightly chaotic and disorganized approach to solving problems compared to say, Germans or Japanese that are very linear and disciplined because of their cultural values.

            All of which can be good in the right place and time.

            But what Charles did to solve this problem is what Chinese call "flipping the table", which literally means to turn something upside-down or inside-out to turn weakness into strength.

            And that was exactly his solution to this vexing problem of diffraction others were failing to solve by taking a linear approach.

            He was and is Chinese. If you begrudge him that it's a matter of your own cultural arrogance not his heritage.

            By the way, Dr. Kao in now Chancellor of the University of Science and Technology (UST) in Hong Kong, China.

            He's a great thinker and a great teacher.

            No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

            by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 11:55:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  wow (0+ / 0-)

              Way to try and twist mistrusting a government with a people.

              I mean really?

              Frankly this is starting to look like a naive and blind attempt to defend China probably because you live there. If you want to pretend China is better on privacy than the US then have fun with that delusion.

              It's funny how you want to take credit for everything while ignoring that Mister Kao didn't get his education in China, wasn't working in China at the time but since his nationality is Chinese it was a Chinese invention.

              Really?

              You know nationalism as blind as yours is just plain sad.

              Der Weg ist das Ziel

              by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:02:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  What? Don't you think other countries can build (6+ / 0-)

        stuff?

        That assumes of course this actually happens which I remain absurdly skeptical about given the construction involved.
        Do you really think the USA is the only country with the technology? Ultra-nationalism bordering on racism. Congrats duh, you've reached a new low.

        As private parts to the gods are we, they play with us for their sport. - Black Adder "Chains"

        by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:53:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  clueless as usual (0+ / 0-)

          do you have any idea how expensive it would be to lay the ocean cable? Or for that matter how difficult it is? Do you think it's just random chance that this hasn't been done before?

          This has nothing to do with nationality at all and everything to do with money and time. If those nations want to build up the backbone I say more power to them as redundancy is always a good thing. But till it's done it's just talk like all the past talk about expanding the backbone.

          But thanks for calling me a racist Clive that's a new lie from you. Must have took you a while to think that one up.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:28:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  you seriously think that China and Brazil (2+ / 0-)

            don't have the money to do this? China has the second largest economy in the world and Brazil the seventh and Russia the eighth. You talk as if they are some tiny countries with no money.

            No War but Class War

            by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:37:22 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  good gods (0+ / 0-)

              Did I say that?

              No I didn't I said it was a serious investment (and not just of time) hence I am skeptical they will actually go though with it.

              Stop putting words in my mouth it's dishonest.

              Der Weg ist das Ziel

              by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:42:45 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I apologize for the confusion (2+ / 0-)

                But your absurd claims that this isn't going to happen is based on nothing but your American chauvinism. The idea that no one but the US can lay cable for internet is absurd.

                No War but Class War

                by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:01:52 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  again words I never said (0+ / 0-)

                  point to where I said it would never happen and I'll apologize.

                  But when you can't I would think the apology should be yours.

                  Der Weg ist das Ziel

                  by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:04:50 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  When you call people clueless for saying (2+ / 0-)

                    that these tubes are going to be built then you may as well be saying it isn't going to happen.

                    When you say stupid things like "Do you think it's just random chance that this hasn't been done before?" about a group of countries that is coming into prominence and which have rising economies then yes, I think you're an American chauvinist. Because all you have is "China bad America Good!"

                    No War but Class War

                    by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:12:24 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  it's clive (0+ / 0-)

                      and Clive is yes clueless not to mention lying about me but he does that when he thinks he can get away with it. I'm sure sooner or later it will get him banned.

                      Go reread my comments AoT then apologize because you just lied about me. Or keep dancing like you are and prove that you're as unreasonable and as bad faith as Clive.

                      At this point I really don't give a damn either way.

                      Der Weg ist das Ziel

                      by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:16:52 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  let me add (0+ / 0-)

                      that thank you for perfectly demonstrating why actually having a conversation with your group is impossible.

                      You have taken a conversation that never happened except in the shared imagination of you all and are using it to accuse me of things I am not. And when called on it do you do the adult thing and apologize? No you double down, you triple down you scream at me that it's my fault for your mistakes and inadequacies.

                      I'm sick of this really I truly am. You want to disagree with me about my opinion on how likely it is these nations will follow though? That's one thing but to back baseless calls on racism, to attack me over things I never said is fucking low AoT. As is your straw man that this is all about "China bad America Good". Grow the fuck up man and get over yourself. I know it's hard but one can have a problem with a nation while having a bigger problem with another nation. It's called being an adult. Something you or your group apparently knows nothing about.

                      I've stuck around hoping that I could find the right words to provide you understanding but it's obviously now that you are maliciously and willfully misconstruing everything I say and have no honor or consistency.

                      I wash my hands of you.  

                      Der Weg ist das Ziel

                      by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:32:00 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  "Your group"? (3+ / 0-)

                        Keep on pretending.

                        "I wash my hands of you."

                        I've heard that before. You come here to spout nonsense and call it discussion. You come into a diary specifically about what the US is doing and go after the diarist because he isn't criticizing anyone but the US. You clearly don't give a shit about having a conversation, if you did then you would just have the fucking conversation instead of this bullshit you keep spouting. You refuse to actually discuss what the US does except to yell about how the evil Obama haters are making it all up. Well, that's a bit hyperbole.

                        No War but Class War

                        by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:39:06 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  you're so fucking arrogant it's mind boggling (0+ / 0-)

                          I 'spout' links and facts. You might not like them but they exist AoT and where I 'spout' my opinion it has as much validity as yours.

                          And yes you and your group refuse to accept that. You think you're some decider of what can and can not be said and you're not.

                          You don't know what I give a shit about AoT because you routinely demonstrate you don't actually read my damn comments. This thread is proof of that. Meanwhile I humor your off topic tangents and changing the goal posts while you search for something you can win on and you want to call that a discussion?

                          pfft what a joke

                          I tried to have a conversation with you you choose to have an imaginary conversation and then blame me for it. Till you actually apologize for attributing things to me I never said I have nothing to say to you because I think you're acting in bad faith.

                          Case in point that evil Obama hater remark. Are you even capable of having a conversation except with this imaginary person you've created?

                          As I said grow the hell up.

                          Der Weg ist das Ziel

                          by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 10:49:38 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I read every one of your comments (2+ / 0-)

                            It's not my fault you don't know how to write in a way that makes sense. You spend the majority of your time telling people how you swear you make sense and you totally didn't mean the thing you just said.

                            You can't even admit that you immediately went on the attack in this diary and completely avoided the subject. And you've managed to make this about how incredibly persecuted you are once again instead of having the damn conversation that you swear up and down that you want to have.

                            Case in point that evil Obama hater remark. Are you even capable of having a conversation except with this imaginary person you've created?
                            That was hyperbole. Rereading the comment I can see how you would think that I meant you were using hyperbole, but I meant that my comment was hyperbole. Sorry for the confusion there.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:02:28 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  you're a liar (0+ / 0-)

                            I've resisted calling you that because I've been trying to be reasonable but you are a fucking liar.

                            Point out where I ever made this about Obama.

                            Point out where I ever said this expansion would never happen.

                            You're a fucking liar and you have absolutely no honor either because you refuse to acknowledge your bad behaviour.

                            I never avoided the subject AoT and more over my first comment on the diary was exactly on topic and was about something said in the diary. You can't admit that of course because that would bring crashing down every lie you've said.

                            You disagree? Then shut and fucking prove it for once.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:09:10 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You resisted? You call me that all the time. (2+ / 0-)

                            What a joke.

                            I never avoided the subject AoT and more over my first comment on the diary was exactly on topic and was about something said in the diary.
                            The diary was about US internet surveillance. If you think that what China does is on the topic of US internet surveillance then you're an idiot. You tried to change the subject away from criticism of the US with your first comment in this diary and you regularly do so in all of these diaries.

                            If I see you complain about making this about Snowden or changing the subject or whatever you deserve nothing but scorn.

                            You are here with a agenda regardless of what you may pretend, and the fact that you constantly attack critics of the president is perfectly obvious to anyone who pays and ounce of attention. I know you hate it when I point that out. Maybe you don't even realize you're doing it, but you are and it's clear.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:19:09 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  prove it then (0+ / 0-)

                            I doubt you can though because while I have nothing but disdain for most of your group in the past I've respected you and as such I have been loath to push this.

                            Case in point I've not called you a liar at all in the diary.

                            But facts? Fuck that right you have your story.

                            Pathetic.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:26:41 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Not in this dairy (2+ / 0-)

                            Plenty of other times though.

                            And I'd quote you but you'd accuse me of doing something or another like you always do when I provide quotes on your bullshit.

                            But you have a good day. No point in sticking around to talk about this nonsense.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:37:25 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  moving the goal posts is tiresome (0+ / 0-)

                            still waiting on your apology for lying

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:29:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You wouldn't know goalposts if they hit you (1+ / 0-)

                            in the face, much less whether they'd moved at all.

                            I never said you had called me a liar in this diary. You need to stop making shit up.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:40:46 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  right back at you liar (0+ / 0-)

                            You're the one having imaginary conversations and smearing me with things I never said.

                            It's sad to see your credibility fall like this.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:53:27 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Hey, if moving the goalposts is tiring, (0+ / 0-)

                            maybe you should invest in a crane. As I said earlier, you get credit for moving the goalposts by hand, but there's no sense in wearing yourself out.

                            As private parts to the gods are we, they play with us for their sport. - Black Adder "Chains"

                            by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 05:55:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  further (0+ / 0-)

                            don't you fucking act like this is my fault you've done nothing but use 'hyperbole' in this discussion. I'll accept your apology on this one but I'm still waiting for your apology for the rest of it.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:10:45 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  If I denied that I use hyperbole (2+ / 0-)

                            then I would definitely deserve to be called a liar.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:19:41 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  still waiting on that apology (0+ / 0-)

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 11:26:55 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  asdf... (0+ / 0-)

                            As private parts to the gods are we, they play with us for their sport. - Black Adder "Chains"

                            by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 12:30:45 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

          •  Hey... (0+ / 0-)

            If it walks like a racist and talks like a racist, it must be a duck.

            No, that's not right. What is it again?

            As private parts to the gods are we, they play with us for their sport. - Black Adder "Chains"

            by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 12:22:53 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Also... (0+ / 0-)

            stop being a troll.

            TIA

            As private parts to the gods are we, they play with us for their sport. - Black Adder "Chains"

            by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 12:36:18 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Great Diary. Thank you for writing (17+ / 0-)

    It is one of the best depictions and descriptions of the whole Snowden affair that I have seen, even with the massive mess of power points.

    Now in reply to:

    Despite all the sweet talk about respect, nobility, exceptionalism and that warm and fuzzy "good public debate", the message the rest of the world has gotten is a raised middle finger.
    We get it. Message received.
    As an American, I am embarrassed by the raised middle finger treatment.  It is a disgrace and one that I can't help but feel personally.  The American Citizens, at least those who are outraged enough to care, have also gotten a raised middle finger from the govt.  One thing that I most sincerely hope is that the response by the Obama administration to these revelations is opens a few eyes about Democrats and especially Neo-Liberal Democrats.  They may not be Republicans, but that doesn't make this any more acceptable.  Some really hard choices need to be made about the direction that this party is going in.

    The only peaceful way that I can see this issue getting remotely addressed, and note that I did not say solved, is for the economic impact against American businesses to be so great that they use their influence to make the govt stop.  

    As an American citizen, I ponder upon the admittedly limited things that I can do to help and the choice that entails.  I make use of Tor and I encrypt as much stuff as I can.  I have no illusions about this preventing their spying but done en mass does make the work load necessary for it much bigger.  I consider getting rid of my cell phone, internet service, and cable TV (I have a Cisco box and have been tempted to send it back to the cable company in pieces demanding a different brand) but that would require me to give up things that I've become dependent upon and enjoy.  I've started using more cash and fewer card transactions.  I don't use Farcebook and rarely do I use Google.  I don't use "public" mail servers (Yahoo, Google, Hotmail), except for exceptionally mundane items.   I would refuse to buy American made IT equipment.

    The biggest change that has occurred for me in the last year is the constant feeling of oppression and of being watched.  It invades everything I do and everywhere I go.  I can't help but constantly wonder if I am being monitored.  Even in my own home.  I wonder if my cell phone, my computers, my TV box, even my home security system are watching and or listening in on me and my conversations.  My sense of privacy and sanctity has been irrevocably shattered and with it my belief that this country actually stands for what it claims.  Many of the slogans, such as Truth, Justice, and Liberty for all simply ring hollow.

    One final thing that I would like to say to the reset of the world, including the author of this diary who (I'm guessing) is not an American is to please understand that some of us in America stand with you.

    "It's not surveillance, it's data collection to keep you safe"

    by blackhand on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:43:49 PM PDT

  •  You made an error (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, Mr Robert, duhban, Jim P, CroneWit, stevemb

    It says June 2014 at the top of your diary. I'm pretty sure you meant June 2013.

    Obama is the most progressive president in my lifetime.

    by freakofsociety on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 01:59:15 PM PDT

  •  a quibble (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fou, koNko

    No nation that I know of recognizes the right or expectation of privacy of non citizens (hell some of the worst nations on privacy like Russia and China don't even recognize this for their own citizens). Thus I'm unsure why you feel the need to single out the US on this.

    Der Weg ist das Ziel

    by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 03:29:31 PM PDT

    •  The answer as to why the US was singled-out... (5+ / 0-)

      ...can be found, oddly enough, in your browser's settings.

      Look for one that says "Show Images," or similar, and make sure it's turned on.

      Hope this helps.




      Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us. ~ Garcia

      by DeadHead on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:15:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Are you not American? (5+ / 0-)

      Do you not live in the US?

      No War but Class War

      by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:45:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  relevance? (0+ / 0-)

        Der Weg ist das Ziel

        by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:40:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Really? (4+ / 0-)
          Thus I'm unsure why you feel the need to single out the US on this.
          Since Konko is a US citizen and most of us live in the US it's entirely reasonable to single out what the US does in regards to any issue.

          Are you going to go around chiding people who write diaries on LGBT issues about how they need to talk about how horrible Russia is as well?

          No War but Class War

          by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:17:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  that's a nice quote out of context there (0+ / 0-)

            again relevance?

            Der Weg ist das Ziel

            by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:17:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Out of context? (4+ / 0-)

              That was the relevance. You were wondering why the US should be singled out in this case and I pointed out a reason.

              No War but Class War

              by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:24:36 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  since you want to be dishonest (0+ / 0-)

                here's the full comment and the bold is mine

                No nation that I know of recognizes the right or expectation of privacy of non citizens (hell some of the worst nations on privacy like Russia and China don't even recognize this for their own citizens). Thus I'm unsure why you feel the need to single out the US on this.
                Nationality has nothing to do with the point AoT. No nation promises the protections of its laws to any people but its citizens. It's one of the perks of citizenship.

                Der Weg ist das Ziel

                by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:27:26 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Again (5+ / 0-)

                  I would imagine that Konko is focusing on the US because he is a citizen and he doesn't like what the US is doing in this regard.

                  I'd add that the US also does this surveillance on citizens, although I'm sure you'll deny that. In fact, if you had read the diary then you'd know that this is what the diarist talked about in the diary.

                  No War but Class War

                  by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:33:54 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  again you're purposefully avoiding my point (0+ / 0-)

                    I read the diary I find it interesting. Hell I even tipped some of the diarist's comments. I find it equally interesting though that you and others want to stick the US on a level of examination you're unwillingly to extend to other nations.

                    You can make any accusation you want AoT I like many others are only interested in what you can prove.

                    Der Weg ist das Ziel

                    by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:40:28 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Yes (5+ / 0-)
                      you and others want to stick the US on a level of examination you're unwillingly to extend to other nations.
                      Which is exactly why the fact that you, I, and Konko are citizens is pertinent.

                      When the country that I live in and am a citizen of does something then it's different than when another country does it. I can do fuck all politically to stop Russian and Chinese surveillance.

                      Your concern trolling is noted though. You clearly care deeply about the people of Russia and China. More so than the country you are a part of and can actually affect, in theory at least.

                      No War but Class War

                      by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:45:47 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  trolling? go look in a mirror (0+ / 0-)

                        I'm not the one that pretended to not understand a point being made.

                        Hell I'm not the one that is still making it up as I go.

                        That's you and that's on you.

                        You think it's 'concern trolling' to point out that a statement is over hyper? Some how I think I will manage to live with that.

                        Der Weg ist das Ziel

                        by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 07:52:22 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  See, trolling (3+ / 0-)

                          I'm off. You can't talk about these things without turning into a fool.

                          No War but Class War

                          by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:03:41 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I want you to look at the long trail of comments (0+ / 0-)

                            that resulted from the apparent fact that not liking my rather rational point you decided to play dumb and pretend it didn't exist.

                            That's on you.

                            Good night.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:30:39 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Your "rational point" was that KonKo should (5+ / 0-)

                            talk more about China and not "single out" the US. And you ignored the part of the diary that discussed the surveillance of Americans.

                            I don't see how whining about how everyone is so mean to America is in any way a rational point.

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:41:30 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  no that's not what I said at all (0+ / 0-)

                            I suggest you both reread my comment and the diary.

                            I asked why are we demanding a higher standard for the US in terms of what 'rights' noncitizens have compared to the rest of the world. It's a question you've gone to great lengths to ignore, insult and obfuscate. But the point remains AoT that no nation extends it's protections to anyone but it's own citizens.

                            That you're reduced to these meaningless straw men and smoke screens is a sign that you have no answer and speaks for itself.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:44:28 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Here's what you said (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            DeadHead, stevemb, YucatanMan
                            a quibble (0+ / 0-)
                            No nation that I know of recognizes the right or expectation of privacy of non citizens (hell some of the worst nations on privacy like Russia and China don't even recognize this for their own citizens). Thus I'm unsure why you feel the need to single out the US on this.
                            So you ignore the part of the diary that's about surveillance on Americans and then you pretend like you can't understand why an American would focus on the actions of the US.

                            I don't want any country spying on me, but I have fuck all power over Russia or China, and the likelihood that my info is routed through Russia or China is fairly low, so why should I care?

                            No War but Class War

                            by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 09:03:16 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  as I said A QUIBBLE (0+ / 0-)

                            here's the freaken definition for you

                            a slight objection or criticism

                            https://www.google.com/...

                            So yes I had a  small objection to the diary because yes I objected to a single sentence of it. And all of this is you apparently not knowing what 'a quibble' means.

                            Der Weg ist das Ziel

                            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:32:04 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Ah, so if I have it straight, you trolled the... (0+ / 0-)

                            diary because of a quibble over a single sentence? Is that right?

                            Way to go, troll!

                            As private parts to the gods are we, they play with us for their sport. - Black Adder "Chains"

                            by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 08:36:13 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

          •  Actually I'm not a US citizen (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AoT, CroneWit, stevemb, YucatanMan, DeadHead

            I lived in the USA in the 1980s and visit 2-3 times a year but I'm not a citizen. But I do consider myself a friend of the US, and have a sister who is a naturalized citizen.

            China, Russia and the USA are pretty imperfect, almost by design because of their size and diversity.

            Those can be viewed as strengths, but in our modern world, I sometimes wonder if it is sustainable.

            In fact, I often wonder what shape government will take in the next century as it is superseded by dominant multinational companies and also the emergence of ad hoc governance and the independence of people. The outcome may be good or bad but it's impossible to predict at this point.

            Some countries may be of more manageable size if they can join in lose confederations, which is something that makes the EU experiment quite interesting. It seems to me the EU over-shot a bit in terms of integration and would benefit from loosening the ties a little to provide greater autonomy and flexibility.

            I would NOT want to be the president of USA, China or Russia, and am not completely insane.

            No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

            by koNko on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 05:39:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  considering I just confirmed (0+ / 0-)

            that konko actually lives in China I can't help but think you owe me apology on this because that undermines entirely your logic.

            Der Weg ist das Ziel

            by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:29:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  No nation has the reach of the USA (8+ / 0-)

      Nor does the range of surveillance of the USA. If you want to have a pissing contest about who is worse, have at it and enjoy talking to yourself.

      And you are mistaken, some countries (not China or the USA) do actually recognize the basic human right to privacy of all people and increasingly they are putting it into law.

      If you are trying to hold up the USA, China or Russia as the exemplars of goodness you are likely to get laughed at so I suggest you not do that and try a more advanced country like Finland.

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:53:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  okay some fair points (0+ / 0-)

        That said "reach" is not only subjective but it's debatable. I don't consider this a pissing contest but a serious question as to why you think the USA should apply it's protections to non citizens. Do you think the same should apply to China? How about Russia?

        If you truly hold that position regardless of nation then at least you're consistent. I disagree with you but I'll respect your consistency.

        Lastly I'm not really trying to hold any nation up as a paragon of virtue. No nation is blameless that's obvious but there are some clear factors we can discuss in terms of free speech, free net and privacy. On those the US generally speaking is better than Russia or China or Iran or North Korea or generally any nation that is peusdo totalitarian to actually such.

        Der Weg ist das Ziel

        by duhban on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 09:37:20 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Reset the Net (10+ / 0-)

    Nice review koNko.  Thanks for taking the time to include all the pics.

  •  From "reddit" (15+ / 0-)

      From ARS TECH:  The US Secret Service, the federal law enforcement agency tasked with protecting the safety of current and former national leaders and their families, visiting heads of state, and others, posted a work order on Monday seeking the development of social media analytics software capable of detecting sarcasm online.

        Doesn't that mean that they are already hoovering up all social media that the NSA has said time and time again that they only look "out"?    

    http://arstechnica.com/...

  •  I really don't want to seem contrarian here, but (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jessical, koNko, stevemb, Fabienne

    About 50% of the criminal cases I have defended in the last 44 years involved an argument that the evidence against my client was inadmissible because it was obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment.  I have a pretty good grip on what is, and is not, a Fourth Amendment violation.  Now, I'm not arguing that the government isn't violating peoples' rights.  All I'm sayi8ng is that the outrage is unfocused and misdirected.  

    The main focus in this diary is on the SCOPE and VOLUME of the data collection. Yes, I see that forcing us to focus on individual cases misdirects us from the big picture - misses the sheer massiveness of he government's wrongdoing.  But the plain fact, the plain logic of it,  is that without individual wrongs there can't be a collective wrong.  

    What I need is a concrete example - a hypothetical - of how some individual might have had their rights violated.  I think most of the rhetoric would shift dramatically and we would be having  a more focused discussion.

    I suggest that 95% of what is perceived or portrayed as a Fourth Amendment violation - isn't, either because its data isn't really private or because the discovery is incidental to otherwise lawful activity or because it was gathered on lawful probable cause, etc, etc..  That is not to say that the remaining 5% isn't cause for outrage, but we can't do anything about it until we get our thinking organized.

    A right answer to the wrong question is a wrong answer.

    by legalarray on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:35:08 PM PDT

    •  When they're collecting all the information (13+ / 0-)

      then it becomes a 4th amendment issue. If 95% of all data is legally collectible then we have a serious fucking problem.

      No War but Class War

      by AoT on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 05:47:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  given what has been discussed about parallel... (11+ / 0-)

      ...construction, this information is used by law enforcement and the source is actively suppressed.  

      http://www.reuters.com/...

      While we are not in any position to know how extensive this practice is, it would tend to indicate that we will not discover any individual cases, shy additional leaks.  Granted, this doesn't give a nice ringing case of injustice, but it means lack of individual examples is systemic and -- rhetorically at least -- we can't assume lack of harm from lack of examples.

      I guess I think people tend to self edit when watched -- in different ways than they do when they are not watched, and this inevitably shapes public discussion and the individual's relationship to the state.  People likely also respond differently when the watching is part of the social contract (I'd class a lot of western europe in that bag) and when the watching is done in secret, as an expression of state power and effectively beyond discussion.  It is hard to quantify or rally around, but I still think it is very real and why secret police have been so popular, historically.

       

      ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

      by jessical on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:09:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Law enforcement calls it "parallel construction" (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jessical, truong son traveler

        That term refers to constructing a totally bogus paper trail about how a person of interest came to the attention of a given law enforcement agency. Bogus because its only purpose is to obscure the fact that the cases are actually initiated based on spy agency data.

        Among other things, the whole procedure normalizes lying under oath by police and government apparatchiks.

        The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war. ♥ ♥ ♥ Forget Neo — The One is Minori Urakawa

        by lotlizard on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:15:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I think part of the problem is the definition of (11+ / 0-)

      what is public and private. The theory that anything I give to a corporation becomes public is not in the spirit of the 4th.

      The theory that headers and metadata are public because I, or my system, give that information to a corporation to allow delivery is a stretch. Do I have a right to open my neighbor's mail box and read his envelopes?

      In the electronic world am I secure in my person, house, papers, and effects or is my every move monitored?

      Can we be fully human without privacy?
      https://www.schneier.com/...

      I'm a Vietnam Era vet. I'm also an Erma Bombeck Era vet. When cussing me out and calling me names please indicate which vet you would like to respond to your world changing thoughts.

      by Just Bob on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 06:19:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think privacy starts in the mind. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, koNko, CroneWit

        Each individual's private self exists,  inviolable,  within themselves.  You have a right to remain silent.

        Humans achieve individual privacy while living in incredibly (to us fat Americans) dense concentrations, even here in the USA.  

        YMMV.

        don't always believe what you think

        by claude on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:33:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Think about roots. "Why?" a fourth-amendment? (8+ / 0-)

      Think about history. You can go back to Rome's frumentarii, or just pretend you were a Catholic or Puritan in Elizabeth I's England.

      Intelligence agencies throughout history -- whatever their legitimate role in national security -- inexorably get subsumed to the interests of political/financial elites. And they become in turn agents for protecting the status quo from any sort of meaningful opposition whatsoever.

      Are we to wait until our 'democratic' political system yields us another King George the Insane Clown, who will absolutely, without a moment's hesitation, squash all effective opposition?

      Or should we throw a monkey wrench, while we still can, into this mechanism of tyranny, which is now fully in place awaiting its Tyrant to appear?

      Which do you find the prudent course?


      A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

      by Jim P on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:46:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The subject is the broad problem (6+ / 0-)

      And not individual cases.

      But if you really want to get into the legal aspects and case law, which is controversial and currently the subject of many suits, I suggest you go to the EFF and ACLU websites that address these issues in great depth.

      You can also go back to a couple of my previous diaries that contain videos of EFF and ACLU speakers presenting the issues from a legal persecutive, I think you will find these interesting.

      But to summarize the Justice Department position, they argue broadly that any electronic media is exempt from 4th protections because there is "no reasonable expectation of privacy" when one provides information to a third party for transmission.

      And they open mail too.

      Now if the US would really tike to take the to the limit, then prepare to be shunned by the rest of the world, which, broadly speaking, is a question I raise in the diary.

      I would welcome you to diligently research this topic and diary it, I think it's an important discussion.

      Anyway, if you browse some of my previous diaries there are various videos and links to be had, and you can draw your own conclusions.

      Bottom line issue is whether the US Constitution and Law needs to evolve for the digital age, there are plenty of arguments either way.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 09:16:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, but think of just one aspect: (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        stevemb, Fabienne

        Just consider the question of whether you have a reasonable expectation of privacy, for 4th Amendment purposes, in the phone numbers you dial from your telephone.  In Smith v. Maryland (1979) 442 U.S. 735, the Supreme Court said you didn't.  Now, the application of that ruling to current technology is being questioned, and lower courts have tried to distinguished it from subtle differences of fact.  It's ripe for new decision by the Supreme Court.  And more refined legislation and oversight is certainly called for.  But at present it is the law of the land. I certainly know what the ACLU is saying, but . . .

        So if one should say "Collection of all data on who and when everybody calls on their telephone is a violation of 4th Amendment rights" they are not making an enlightened statement.  It's like saying "What goes up must come down."  We all get what they mean, but they shouldn't say it to an astronaut.  

        A right answer to the wrong question is a wrong answer.

        by legalarray on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 10:02:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Smith targeted ONE person w 'probable cause' (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          stevemb, AoT, lotlizard

          already established because of Smith's past actions.

          Current NSA practice is to sweep up every electron passing through the fiber-optic cables in case NSA (or other law-enforcement agencies) might designate someone as a 'person of interest'.

          Please go to the EFF and ACLU links provided above by koNko.

    •  Here are some more links (7+ / 0-)

      Since you are interested, the foundation case that is typically cited by the Justice Department, NSA and advocates of the mass-surveillance techniques is Smith v. Maryland or the "pen register" ruling.

      This pretty narrow ruling has been stretched to cover all manner of metadata and contents attached, and has recently been the subject of two contradictory Circuit Court rulings, one which upheld and one (my Judge Leon) overturning.

      These are making their way though appeals and are expected to come before the SCOTUS in the next year or so.

      Some links:

      Smith v. Maryland - Wikipedia
      Smith v. Maryland - Oyez

      And to make it easy for you, here are some embeds of talks by members of EFF, ACLU, Citizen Lab and Independent Journalist & Tor project activist Jacob Appelbaum covering various technical and legal aspects of the subject.

      DEFCON 20 (2012)

      http://youtu.be/...

      DEFCON 21 (2013)

      http://youtu.be/...

      http://youtu.be/...

      29C3 (2012)

      http://youtu.be/...

      30C3 (2013)

      http://youtu.be/...

      http://youtu.be/...

      http://youtu.be/...

      Bruce Schneier - MIT 2014 and Stanford 2014

      http://youtu.be/...

      http://youtu.be/...

      In case you are wondering how I can post a YouTube from China, well, I have my sources and methods, and keep information organized, so there you go.

      Enjoy the talks, it covers a lot.

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 01:27:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Here's an example (that really happened) (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, CroneWit, stevemb, charlatan

      A number of the NSA analysts found that all that data and all that analytic capacity was the ideal weapon for stalking their ex-girlfriends.

      That's a straight up violation of the law in New Jersey (where I live) and many other staes.  At least in NJ, the law does not make an exception for misuse of information, e.g. if the NSA can't prove they were acting properly under the law, the NSA personnel can be prosecuted as stalkers (a felony); if they are found to have been motivated by misogyny it comes under the hate crime statutes as well.  More importantly, they can have their asses sued off.  If they are private contractors, the contractor (usually a deep pockets Beltway bandit) could be sued, too (I'd assume the NSA is exempt).  This doesn't happen because nobody knows who these people are.

      The vast majority of abuses are of this nature.  Why?  The NSA's secrecy culture means that it is not a single organization but a bunch of fiefdoms.  Nobody in management there (you don't get a senior position in the NSA unless you are rigidly ideologically vetted, which means you're dumber than a flea) would be capable of acting on their fantasies.  So the whole thing becomes a private market in which other parts of the government compete with internal factions in the NSA, organized crime, other spies -- it is a safe bet that the NSA has been thoroughly penetrated by Chinese intelligence -- businesses (not necessarily the usual suspects in the US, do you really think a far-right puzzle palace is going to help out a unionized US automobile manufacturer?  Only the French and Chinese do that.

      •  Criminal Coverup Conspiracy (0+ / 0-)
        A number of the NSA analysts found that all that data and all that analytic capacity was the ideal weapon for stalking their ex-girlfriends.

        That's a straight up violation of the law in New Jersey (where I live) and many other staes.  At least in NJ, the law does not make an exception for misuse of information, e.g. if the NSA can't prove they were acting properly under the law, the NSA personnel can be prosecuted as stalkers (a felony); if they are found to have been motivated by misogyny it comes under the hate crime statutes as well.  More importantly, they can have their asses sued off.

        The only argument the apologists can come up with is "the agency handled it internally; that proves the system works".

        Maybe the head of the NSA should wear a big pointy hat and carry a mitre.

        On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

        by stevemb on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 07:53:54 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Your comment deserves a serious reply and I wish (0+ / 0-)

      I noticed it earlier.

      The elusive 4th Amendment violations. Even where there are blatant examples that affect the public acutely in ways that can be evidenced, successful prosecution isn't easy.  The federal case against the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office is a useful example even though it has different circumstances. A defendant withholding cooperation can impede progress for years.

      When the European Parliament conducted an investigation into violations of its citizens' privacy rights, high level access to the Treasury, DOJ, and White House was met by a wall of secrecy. Of course, the US doesn't recognize 4th Amendment protection for non-US persons abroad, but it does recognize through a framework of treaties and cooperative agreements that EU citizens have privacy rights that must be observed. US business enterprises, specifically those collecting data, also certify through the Federal Trade Commission, their compliance with EU privacy requirements.

      The Parliament's investigation found examples of suspicionless surveillance used to collect evidence that would probably be inadmissible in a US court. When US officials were questioned, they showed their EU counterparts the relevant laws, like the extraterritoriality provisions in the Patriot Act. They refused to answer questions about how the US gathered data without access or authorization to identify a subject of interest, in one case, an individual trading an ordinary consumer product the US considers contraband because it has sanctions on the country of origin. The EU has no such restriction and none of its laws were violated. The US only says what its laws allow in the interest of national security. You should understand that getting into more specific detail here could be problematic.

      I say that NSA practices haven't been considered a matter for law enforcement or the judicial system equivalent to the EU's interest. It would be even harder to find cases of inadmissible evidence and the prosecution is aware it may have to conceal or disguise the origin point of an investigation.

      It might help to think about the low-grade surveillance accepted by Americans  in transactions with banks and financial institutions. Under Title III of the Patriot Act, they were mandated to monitor red flag activity indicative of money laundering and/or terrorism. FinCen and other systems and protocols were established since the Patriot Act and the focus shifted to more mundane types of criminal activity. The affected individuals could be an ordinary client who's asked to explain changes in his account activity compared to usual patterns and nothing more comes of it.  If the feds haul in a drug dealer, who's going to protest? It's the unpredictability about how these systems could be used by future governments that might criminalize activity that's perfectly legal today.

  •  Happy Snowden Day! and as everyone knows (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DeadHead, koNko, AoT, CroneWit, stevemb

    the real festivities are taking place in the EU with numerous commemorations and retrospectives.

    Here's the POTUS landing in Brussels to take part in the celebrations G7 meeting.

    All the progress made by the European Parliament toward the elimination of mass surveillance has been wiped out by the fascist takeover from the May 25 elections. [/snark]

    Never mind trying to explain that the media had no idea who was elected other than 24 FN from France and a matching 24 UKIP from the UK, so all the newcomers must be far-right extremists too. It was a much more compelling story than explaining the leftists in Greece, Spain, and Portugal, the centrists in unlikely places around eastern Europe, or the Socialists & Democrats keeping practically all their seats while the center-right lost more than 20% of theirs.

    The MEPs on vacation till July follow the drama of the incoming far-right members trying to form a political group when they all hate each other (after all, each delegation can't overlook that all the others are foreigners) and there aren't quite as many of them as the press reported.

    I've said all along that Marine Le Pen won't form a coalition that the Parliament recognizes as a political group because of the requirement for members from 7 countries. The bonus is that the far-right group that remains from last session, Nigel Farage's EFD, fell apart, even with UKIP's increase in seats, because most of its partners were not reelected. I posted tallies here yesterday but they're already obsolete.

    Shocking news reported today says that the Dansk Folkeparti and the Finns (aka True Finns) are defecting to David Cameron's ECR.

    Le Pen and Farage could hook up but I say Marine would rather burn holes in her arms with a lit cigar. I like the idea of the wingnuts foregoing the public funding they'd get as a group and the inability to advance any agenda as unaligned individuals.

    Hopefully, the new Parliament will pick up where it left off but articles like thisworry me, though it's just a blog.

    •  And this relates to mass-surveillance, how? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      koNko, stevemb

      Saw your diary. You know that Farage has rejected any idea of teaming with Le Pen, since it was in the major newspapers in GB, at the very least, so not sure why you keep bringing that up.

      Reality: the right is stronger in Europe today than it was a year ago. Hopefully, the various 'ultra-nationalists' (synonym for 'racialists' will relate to each other as did the 1960s American Right and be at each other's throats for each other's lack of purity.


      A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

      by Jim P on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 08:59:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some of them are actually worse (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jim P, CroneWit, stevemb

        There are Rightists everywhere, it's part of the human genome, but my experience in the UK, Germany and Scandinavian countries I spend some time in these few years is they tend to be as factional as the rest of European politics only more so.

        I think you can look at how the right has risen and fallen in the UK, particularly the National Front, to see how much infighting happens.

        Which is why I hate purity test on the Left.

        Quick way to kill a movement.

        Definitely the Right has risen in Europe this year, but I would not over-estimate their political power or influence.

        Most of them are nativist movements that go nowhere.

        No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

        by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 09:36:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I wish I could believe there's no meaningful (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CroneWit, stevemb

          threat. There's an article (I don't have the link) which details how Oligarchs are aligning with racialist/religious fanatics the world over. Given the 1920s/'30s we can see that often what this ilk lacks is enough money; that they will bury differences to get official backing and money.

          I feel it's a big mistake to pooh-pooh the growth of the Right in today's world. There are powerful people who want the climate the Right engenders to succeed.


          A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

          by Jim P on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 09:57:20 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I write a continuing series on the considerable (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DeadHead, CroneWit, stevemb

        efforts made by the European Parliament to end mass surveillance and institute a digital habeas corpus to protect the privacy rights of its citizens. The diarist is a reader who possesses a body of knowledge in a related area.

        My connection to the European Parliament goes back way before the May 25 election. I know this as a group that includes amazing, inspiring, committed, hard core activists of the left, all of whom were reelected. When the Parliament reconvenes, the work will continue.

    •  Hi Mark (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, Mark Lippman, DeadHead, CroneWit, stevemb

      I was hoping to see you here and get your comments, so thanks for stoping by.

      Unfortunately I have been really busy at work recently and not spending much time here so I need to catch up on things.

      But I gave your diary of a day or so ago a read on my mobile and yeah, the Right has not quite stormed the Bastille yet.

      Some of my close colleagues are Finns, and they have a lot to say about the rightist crackpots there. Personally, I find the Finnish government to be one of the most progressive and pragmatic, but then, it has the weakness sometimes of being too open minded and fair to the lunatic fringe, if you know what I mean. All things considered there, really.

      My boss is a Finn (she commutes between China and Europe) and she and her husband live on a farm outside Salo, and while they are really liberal and progressive, some of their neighbors are not so much so they argue politics in the local pub a lot. It's fun to watch her face turn red!

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 09:27:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yes, it IS time! (9+ / 0-)
    As part of a "Reset the Net" campaign now reaching a mainstream audience, Google on Wednesday said it was releasing a test version of a program allowing Gmail users to keep email encrypted until it reaches other Gmail users, without the company decrypting it in transit to display advertising.

    Google, Microsoft and Facebook Inc moved to encrypt internal traffic after revelations by Snowden, a former NSA contractor, that the spy agency hacked into their connections overseas. The companies have also smaller adjustments that together make sweeping collection more difficult.

    "Anyone trying to perform mass surveillance is going to have a much harder job today than they would have even six months ago," said Nate Cardozo, a staff attorney with the civil liberties group Electronic Frontier Foundation.

    Reform is a long way off, so until then...ENCRYPT THE SHIT OUT OF EVERYTHING.

    Thanks, Ed!

    •  Yep. (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, CroneWit, stevemb, Choco8, Back In Blue

      Eventually you make surveillance slow and expensive.

      But the problem is to make that universal and automatic and that won't happen overnight.

      And there will always be a digital arms war, with governments having most of the best toys.

      So we need to use our brains. "In Math we Trust".

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Thu Jun 05, 2014 at 09:30:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I agree (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, CroneWit, stevemb, Brown Thrasher

    It is high-time to wake-up and rein-in the all-too-common-now phenomenon of mass-surveillance of on-line content on the inter-net.

  •  Control is the purpose of surveillance (6+ / 0-)

    It has NOTHING to do with terrorism, unless you define terrorism as "disagreeing with the government".
    Throughout history, fear of external enemies has been used to justify surveillance, but it is always used to control political enemies.

    With these powers, grassroots organizing using the internet can be stopped and opposition leaders can be identified and neutralized.  

    Your internet history can be used against you to paint a bad picture.  And even if you've never done anything on line you could be embarassed by, or that could be miscontrued, who truly believes that a government who thinks it is OK to collect data on every citizen and lie to us about it would never stoop to faking logs or search histories or the contents of a hard drive to taint the reputation of a political opponent?

    Today, candidates are vetted by the oligarchy through the donations process.  We decide if a candidate is "serious" by looking at how much money they raise--the result being that the only "serious" candidates are oligarchy approved.

    In the surveillance state, every detail of your online persona is subject to scrutiny and possible public ridicule.  If the truth is not sufficiently salacious, a damning picture can be painted with fraud that no one can prove is a fraud because they control the whole system.

    The purpose of the surveillance state is to control us--not fight terrorism.  We've got to recognize the nature of the problem to address it.

    We kidnap. We torture. It's our policy. Embrace it or end it!

    by Mosquito Pilot on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 04:43:05 AM PDT

  •  Another superb diary, koNko! (8+ / 0-)

    I've been seeing a lot of 'year-end reflections' on NSA/Snowden disclosures, but yours is the only one I've seen that lays out the facts as supported by NSA documents that we were introduced to this last year.

    And, as always, your perspective as someone familiar with America, but a citizen of another country, keeps us reminded that the effects of the NSA/USG surveillance state goes far beyond our borders.

    You have been a huge asset to this conversation since it began, koNko.  Hope you will stick around and keep up the good work!

  •  Good Diary (3+ / 0-)

    If this doesn't erase any doubt any your mind that the NSA & GCHQ represent an existential threat to our freedom--the worst there has ever been, in fact--then you're an NSA/GCHQ JTRIG team member and it's your job to spam these forums in an attempt to prove that the issue is "up in the air" and that "serious questions remain" and that "everyone does it and has always done it, so why get upset?" and "think of the children!"

    The NSA must be immediately dismantled.  Those who lead that agency, and those who complied with such patently illegal orders, must be brought to justice in Nuremburg-style trials.  Those in Congress who failed in their duty to constrain these rogue agencies must be removed from office.  The President, who has doubled down on these crimes, must be impeached.  The U.S. must lead the drive toward a new international norm that holds the security and privacy of our data sacred.

  •  The media genius of Edward Snowden (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Choco8, stevemb

    the two most powerful factions are the surveillance state and the banksters

    it took a genius to confront them

    if our democracy survives, Snowden will be a hero

    if our democracy does not survive, Snowden will have to be part of a giant cover up that will ban Orwell's book 1984

    it is not clear that we can put things back in order

    The media genius of Edward Snowden

  •  Always humorous (0+ / 0-)

    that the people who are the most freaked out continuously engage in social media.

    I have yet to hear an explanation for this, most likely because there is NO explanation. The private industries capitalizing on this don't want an explanation, either.  They have products to sell and need social media... but not to worry.  The private for-profit sector ALWAYS has the public's interests at heart.

    Silent Circle pops up just before the Snowden leaks.  Funny coincidence.  Vadofone releases data supposedly showing other country's governments spying all across the globe, but thankfully has a new 'safety' app to sell, thanks to their recent investment in Secusmart.  Another funny coincidence.

    Anywho, who woulda thunk that populists on the Left would be scurrying for cover beneath the wings of the for-profit industry after years of admonishing them for favoring money over the well being of society.  TOO FUNNY.

    'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

    by luvbrothel on Fri Jun 06, 2014 at 03:17:34 PM PDT

  •  Kim Dotcom $5 M for whistle blower for his case (0+ / 0-)

    internet guru

    attacked by US copywrite in largest claim in history

    http://torrentfreak.com/...

    here is a video about him

    https://www.youtube.com/...

  •  Excellent and comprehensive diary, KoNko (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Alhambra

    I sm sure it is obvious to you that those who brought up Chine/Tian'anmen are doing so in an effort to deflect any criticism from the current American presidential administration. You didn't owe them a response, but you have one that was reflective and thoughtful, which I also appreciate.

    Frankly, given the state of affairs around the world, from the Arab Spring to the Occupy movement, it has become clear that those in control (political and business leaders) have allowed the balance of power and wealth to concentrate in far too few hands, and they're fucking terrified of what might happen if people were to put aside their differences and collectively demand more control over the political and economic systems of the world. Fortunately for them, there's always enough useful idiots around who are willing to put party, or race, or class, or gender, or nationality ahead of the common interest. They've been the best allies the plutocrats, corrupt politicians and wealthiest among us could havwe hoped for.

    T'd & R'd.

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