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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 72,631

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Elizabeth Warren Could Do DU A Big Favor If Hillary Decides To Run In 2016...

And that would be to run herself, challenging Hillary Clinton.

I remember the Gender Wars of 2007 and 2008...

I doubt she will make such a determination based upon DU...


If you think it's gotten bad now... just think of the possibilities.

How the Dems Should Fight Income Gap in 2014 - RingOfFire

How the Dems Should Fight Income Gap in 2014
by Joshua De Leon - RingOfFire
Posted on December 26, 2013

In 2013, freshman Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) became the voice of the income inequality movement. She has taken on Wall Street and government banking deregulation, calling for major reforms in the American financial system. Now, the Democrats have announced a new fight against income inequality.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) announced that Senate Democrats will shift their focus on income inequality. Dems believe that this refocus will be beneficial in sealing the 2014 off-year elections. Reid’s deputy, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), reasserted the calls of Reid and Pope Francis regarding income inequality.

“<Francis> warned that income inequality leads to, in his words, ‘an economy of exclusion and inequality, and a globalization of indifference,’” Durbin said. “There are people who got up and went to work today, and will go to work tomorrow and work every single day, work very hard, and despite their best efforts, they’re not making enough money to live to the next paycheck.”

The gap between the rich and the lower- and middle-classes has been widening, and that’s what Democrats seek to address. Democrats want to focus on job creation, insurance, and raising the minimum wage. However, simply raising the minimum wage won’t cure the income inequality plague. Democrats need to target Wall Street to make any effective change in income inequality.


Reid’s call to action is in progressive Democrats’ wheelhouse. Democrats would do well to put Warren on the battlefront, if not lead it. Not only does she have the knowledge to take up the fight, but she has the sand to keep income inequality a relevant topic and the fang to make Wall Street nervous.

From: http://www.ringoffireradio.com/2013/12/dems-fight-income-gap-2014/

Written And Released In December 1971, Appearing In Film (The Breakfast Club) In 1985...

Seems VERY appropriate to spread around again in the digital age...

From David Bowie's 'Changes'

And these children that you spit on
As they try to change their worlds
Are immune to your consultations
They're quite aware
of what they're going through

- David Bowie (1971)

:evilgrin: - Ray McGovern Has A Heads-Up For You, Re: 'Face The Nation' Tommorow

Gen. Michael "No Probable Cause" Hayden
By Ray McGovern - OpEdNews


Barring a last-minute frantic call from the White House, CBS's "Face the Nation" will interview whistleblowers Thomas Drake (ex-senior executive at the National Security Agency) and Jesselyn Radack (ex-ethics adviser at the Justice Department). Michael Hayden, who headed the NSA and CIA and now is a chief NSA defender on CNN and Fox News, will also be interviewed this Sunday.

It was a high privilege for me to join Drake, Radack and FBI whistleblower Coleen Rowley on a visit to Edward Snowden in Russia on Oct. 9. Never have I been in the company of persons who are such incorruptible straight-arrow patriots. Not so, sadly, Michael Hayden.

Given how these network interviews go, however, Hayden will probably be introduced as the patriot he isn't. Here is a more fact-based introduction that I would urge the moderator, CBS's Major Garrett, to use:

"Let me also welcome former Gen. Michael Hayden. Gen. Hayden was the first director of NSA to violate his oath to the U.S. Constitution by acquiescing in the Bush administration's order to violate the Fourth Amendment, which, until then, had served as the 'First Commandment' at NSA.

"On May 8, 2006, former NSA Director Adm. Bobby Ray Inman stated publicly that what Hayden did was in clear violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Another former NSA director, Army Gen. William Odom, told an interviewer on Jan. 4, 2006, that Hayden 'should have been court-martialed.'

"This sad reality was known to CBS and our mainstream media colleagues before Hayden was confirmed as CIA director on May 18, 2006, but we were successful in deep-sixing it, keeping it out of the public debate.

"We also are grateful to both the Bush and the Obama administrations for making it possible to have Gen. Hayden with us in the studio here today rather than having to speak with him via Skype from a federal prison where he assuredly belongs for his eavesdropping crimes at NSA. Hayden and the enabling giant telecoms escaped accountability via the Bush-pushed 2006 law holding all harmless for these violations of law.

"As for President Obama...


More: http://www.opednews.com/articles/Gen-Michael-No-Probable-by-Ray-McGovern-Bush_CIA-Director-Michael-Hayden_FISA_Intelligence-131228-537.html

Judge on NSA Case Cites 9/11 Report, But It Doesn’t Actually Support His Ruling - ProPublica

Judge on NSA Case Cites 9/11 Report, But It Doesn’t Actually Support His Ruling
by Justin Elliott - ProPublica
Dec. 28, 2013, 11:35 a.m.


Update Dec. 28, 2013: In a new decision in support of the NSA's phone metadata surveillance program, U.S. district court Judge William Pauley cites an intelligence failure involving the agency in the lead-up to the 9/11 attacks. But the judge's cited source, the 9/11 Commission Report, doesn't actually include the account he gives in the ruling. What’s more, experts say the NSA could have avoided the pre-9/11 failure even without the metadata surveillance program.

We previously explored the key incident in question, involving calls made by hijacker Khalid al-Mihdhar from California to Yemen, in a story we did over the summer, which you can read below.

In his decision, Pauley writes: "The NSA intercepted those calls using overseas signals intelligence capabilities that could not capture al-Mihdhar's telephone number identifier. Without that identifier, NSA analysts concluded mistakenly that al-Mihdhar was overseas and not in the United States."

As his source, the judge writes in a footnote, "See generally, The 9/11 Commission Report." In fact, the 9/11 Commission report does not detail the NSA's intercepts of calls between al-Mihdhar and Yemen. As the executive director of the commission told us over the summer, "We could not, because the information was so highly classified publicly detail the nature of or limits on NSA monitoring of telephone or email communications.”

To this day, some details related to the incident and the NSA's eavesdropping have never been aired publicly. And some experts told us that even before 9/11 -- and before the creation of the metadata surveillance program -- the NSA did have the ability to track the origins of the phone calls, but simply failed to do so.


Much More: http://www.propublica.org/article/fact-check-the-nsa-and-sept-11

In Case You Missed This... And Support EW & CFPB... 'The Scholars Who Shill for Wall Street'

The Scholars Who Shill for Wall Street
Academics get paid by financial firms to testify against Dodd-Frank regulations. What’s wrong with this picture?

Lee Fang - October 23, 2013 | This article appeared in the November 11, 2013 edition of The Nation.


Professor Todd Zywicki is vying to be the toughest critic of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the new agency set up by the landmark Dodd-Frank financial reform law to monitor predatory lending practices. In research papers and speeches, Zywicki not only routinely slams the CFPB’s attempts to regulate bank overdraft fees and payday lenders; he depicts the agency as a “parochial” bureaucracy that is “guaranteed to run off the rails.” He has also become one of the leading detractors of the CFPB’s primary architect, Elizabeth Warren, questioning her seminal research on medical bankruptcies and slamming her for once claiming Native American heritage to gain “an edge in hiring.”

Zywicki’s withering arguments against financial reform have earned him guest columns in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times and on The New York Times’s website. Lobbyists representing the largest consumer finance companies in the country have cited his writings in letters to regulators, and the number of times he has testified before Congress is prominently displayed on his academic website at the George Mason University School of Law.

What isn’t contained in Zywicki’s university profile, CV, byline or congressional testimony is the law professor’s other job: he is a director of the Global Economics Group, a consulting business that boasts in a brochure that its experts have been hired by industry to influence the CFPB and other regulatory agencies. Nor does Zywicki advertise Global’s client list, which includes some of the biggest names in the financial industry, among them Visa, Bank of America and Citigroup.

Last summer, Zywicki’s firm was retained for $500 an hour on behalf of Morgan Drexen, a debt-relief company accused by the CFPB of deceiving consumers and charging illegal upfront fees. None of these potential conflicts of interest, however, have been disclosed during the course of Zywicki’s anti-CFPB advocacy in the media or in government.

After the financial industry lost the battle to defeat Dodd-Frank, it moved quickly to...


More: http://www.thenation.com/article/176809/scholars-who-shill-wall-street#

When Privacy is Treason - The Surprisingly Short Life of Privacy - CounterPunch

When Privacy is Treason
The Surprisingly Short Life of Privacy

by EVAN YOES - CounterPunch
DECEMBER 26, 2013


The word does not occur in our Constitution. It is a Judicial Construct by Extension from the British custom of granting privilege to an Englishman’s Private Property.

Privacy rode into our Bill of Rights on the Fourth Amendment, as authored by James Madison, which specifies protection against ‘unreasonable search and seizure’ of documents or persons without judicial warrant based upon ‘probable cause’. Extension of Fourth Amendment rights to include personal Privacy happened only in the 20th century — with Katz v. United States (1967), when the Supreme Court held that 4th Amendment protections extend to the privacy of individuals as well as physical locations.

When Kings ruled and lesser nobility took what they wanted from common people, rulers were always alert to plots against them. Spies were paid and eavesdropping rewarded. Communication among subjects, if in writing, was interdicted or intercepted as necessary. The Royal Post in England was created under Henry VIII, in response to the desire of authorities to control publication and dissemination of ideas. Especially heretical ones.

In July 1655 the Post Office came under the direct control of John Thurloe, a Secretary of State, Cromwell’s spymaster general. Previous English governments had tried to prevent conspirators communicating; Thurloe preferred to deliver their posts having surreptitiously read them.

In those times, even people exchanging letters with friends often relied on various forms of secret writing. True cryptography — first developed by Islamic scholars in the 800s — bloomed again everywhere in Europe.

Thus matters stood until Samuel F. B. Morse developed his electric telegraph, setting off a cascade of related inventions and applications that almost immediately — think 1861-65 — evoked government oversight and surveillance. “Television kills telephony in brothers’ broil,” wrote James Joyce; he was wrong: telecommunication media and methods don’t supersede one another, they co-evolve, and the State’s interest in adapting them to its purposes ensures that it continues to control them in one way or another.

In 1913 the U.S. Justice Department inked a consent decree with AT&T ...


Much More: http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/12/26/when-privacy-is-treason/

The Selfie To End All Selfies...

Legend ... NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins on his second space walk. Picture: NASA Source: Supplied

From: http://www.news.com.au/technology/science/nasa-astronaut-mike-hopkins-takes-selfie-to-end-all-selfies/story-fn5fsgyc-1226790981496

BREAKING: NSA Phone Surveillance Is Legal, New York (Federal) Judge Rules - AP/HuffPo

NSA Phone Surveillance Is Legal, New York Judge Rules
12/27/13 11:33 AM ET EST


NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge in New York has ruled that a massive federal phone-tracking program is legal.

U.S. District Judge William Pauley issued the decision Friday. He says the program "represents the government's counter-punch" to eliminate al-Qaida's terror network by connecting fragmented and fleeting communications.

In ruling, the judge noted the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and how the phone data-collection system could have helped investigators connect the dots before the attacks occurred.

He says the government learned from its mistake and "adapted to confront a new enemy: a terror network capable of orchestrating attacks across the world." He said the data-collection program was part of the adjustment.

He dismissed a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union...


Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/27/nsa-phone-surveillance_n_4508483.html

WOW !!! - This Political Cartoon From 20 Years Ago Was Disturbingly Prescient - Tom Tomorrow

This Political Cartoon From 20 Years Ago Was Disturbingly Prescient
By Will Oremus - Slate


Dan Perkins, aka Tom Tomorrow, penned the cartoon above in 1994 for Spin magazine.

At the time, the cartoon might have seemed a little hysterical. Remember, this was pre-warrantless-wiretapping, pre-Guantánamo, pre-Snowden, and pre-Obama-assassinating-American-citizens-with-drones, sans trial. Rather, the context for the cartoon was a new NSA gadget called the “Clipper chip” that would have made it easier for government officials to listen in on phone conversations, provided they had the legal authority to do so. (The technology was never widely adopted, and the NSA soon abandoned it.)

Now? Not so hysterical. But hey, at least the third panel isn't strictly accurate, yet.

The funny thing is that you could never print this cartoon today—not because it’s too subversive, but because it’s too obvious. It no longer reads as satire.


Link: http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2013/12/26/tom_tomorrow_spin_cartoon_from_1994_predicted_patriot_act_nsa_surveillance.html

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