Category Archives: Government Archive

The Constitution of the United States


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Chase Justice, Mountain Finch Post on Friday August 23, 2013

The Constitution of the United States: A Transcription

Note: The following text is a transcription of the Constitution in its original form.
Items that are hyperlinked have since been amended or superseded
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We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

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Congress eyes renewed push for legislation to rein in the NSA


Members of Congress are considering 11 legislative measures to constrain the activities of the National Security Agency, in a major shift of political opinion in the eight weeks since the first revelations from whistleblower Edward Snowden. The proposals range from repealing the legal foundations of key US surveillance powers to more moderate reforms of the secretive court proceedings for domestic spying. If enacted, the laws would represent the first rollback of the NSA’s powers since 9/11.

 

The Guardian has spoken to six key lawmakers involved in the push to rein in the NSA, and those involved in the process argue there is now an emerging consensus that the bulk collection of millions of phone records needs to be overhauled or even ended. Justin Amash, the Republican congressman whose measure to terminate the indiscriminate collection of phone data was narrowly defeated 10 days ago, said he was certain the next legislative push will succeed. “The people who voted no are, I think, hopeful to get another opportunity to vote yes on reforming this program and other programs,” he said.

 

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America’s Secret Government Program to Hire Nazi War Criminals


Mad that our government lied about the NSA spying program? That’s nothing. In 1945, it lied about recruiting Nazis as spies—and the truth lay hidden for decades. When James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence, lied to the Senate Intelligence Committee in June about the National Security Agency’s top-secret program to spy on U.S. citizens, he did Americans a favor. He reminded us that government officials habitually lie, then hide behind the shield of national security. They get away with their deception for years, if not decades. 

 

One of the biggest U.S. whoppers began in May 1945, just three days after Germany surrendered to the Allied Forces. It lay buried in classified documents until the mid-1980s. When the Allies began trying Nazi war criminals at Nuremberg in late 1945, Americans were proud of their country. What we didn’t suspect, however, was that the U.S. military-intelligence complex was simultaneously obstructing that very same justice system.

 

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How Buck McKeon created a global drone enterprise


A lawmaker helped create the drone industry – and has reaped the benefits. A drone reportedly flew over North Dakota last year, taking pictures of a meth lab. The drone’s flight log was released in July in response to a lawsuit filed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a civil-liberties organisation. The flight log sheds light on the way drones are being used – routinely and to an extent not previously known to the public. The release of the flight log and other documents caused a furore, and civil libertarians expressed dismay over the widespread use of drones.

 

However surprising the news about the drones may have been to activists, the surveillance of the meth lab is part of a global trend. Officials in Northern Ireland used drones to keep dignitaries safe at the G8 summit in June. Drones have flown over train tracks in Germany to look for graffiti artists. Many countries, including China and Israel, make drones. Yet the US is the world’s leader in creating technology for drones and in promoting their use – for both military and civilian purposes. The interest in drones in the US crosses political lines, with both Democrats and Republicans investing in the aircraft.

 

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The Categorical Imperative Should Be Applied to ObamaCare.


The United States Government stores a bunch of silly documents written maybe 240 or so years ago. I’m not sure why. The writing is well-nigh illegible and Ezra Klien assures us that people just don’t get documents written over 100 years ago. They should recycle the paper. The US Government certainly doesn’t believe all the silly things written in the Declaration of Independence. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,…” Seriously?

 

Bill S., a fellow Frontpage Writer at RS.com, offers us a flagrant example of just how much of a joke our current Presidential Administration considers the words from the Declaration that I cited above. Apparantly, if the government official in question works for a member of The United States Congress then implying that any of them are created equal will get you served with a Writ of YAFKM.* They certainly are not created equally when OPM bills them for their health plans. As you can read below, some people are created more equal and will be receiving a discount that the rest of us just aren’t getting.

 

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The lame jobs report, in eight charts


So you probably have seen the headlines on this morning’s somewhat disappointing jobs report. Here’s a quick rundown of the key charts. 1. July saw 162,000 new jobs, less than the consensus expectation for 183,000. 2. Unemployment fell to 7.4% from 7.6%. 3. The broadest gauge of unemployment, the U-6, which includes part-timers looking for full-time jobs, declined slightly to 14% from 14.3% in June.

 

4. Some of the strongest gains in jobs were in the relatively low paid retail sector, which added 47,000 jobs in July. The sector has produced 352,000 jobs over the last 12 months. 5. Construction employment actually declined by 6,000 during July, which is a disappointment to those hoping the US housing recovery would be a big contributor to an improving employment picture.

 

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Liberty's Backlash


Last week, Justin Amash, the two-term libertarian Republican congressman from Michigan, joined with John Conyers, the 25-term liberal Democratic congressman from the same state, to offer an amendment to legislation funding the National Security Agency (NSA). If enacted, the Amash-Conyers amendment would have forced the government’s domestic spies when seeking search warrants to capture Americans’ phone calls, texts and emails first to identify their targets and produce evidence of their terror-related activities before a judge may issue a warrant. The support they garnered had a surprising result that stunned the Washington establishment. It almost passed.

 

The final vote, in which the Amash-Conyers amendment was defeated by 205 to 217, was delayed for a few hours by the House Republican leadership, which opposed the measure. The Republican leadership team, in conjunction with President Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, needed more time for arm-twisting so as to avoid a humiliating loss. But the House rank-and-file did succeed in sending a message to the big-government types in both parties: Nearly half of the House of Representatives has had enough of government spying and then lying about it, and understands that spying on every American simply cannot withstand minimal scrutiny or basic constitutional analysis.

 

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Senators spar over definition of ‘journalist’ in seeking to protect them


The Senate Judiciary Committee, looking to provide protections for journalists and their sources, ran into a roadblock Thursday when lawmakers couldn’t agree on the definition of “journalist.” Under the legislation, journalists wouldn’t have to comply with subpoenas or court orders forcing them to reveal sources or confidential information unless a judge first determines there’s reason to think that a crime has occurred and government officials have exhausted all other alternatives. It’s the third time Congress has considered a “shield law” for journalists. Similar bills have failed despite bipartisan support.

 

“I’m hoping the third time’s a charm,” said Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., the committee’s chairman. The bill defines a journalist as a person who has a “primary intent to investigate events and procure material” in order to inform the public by regularly gathering information through interviews and observations. The person also must intend to report on the news at the start of obtaining any protected information and must plan to publish that news. But senators disagreed on how to define journalists, since some thought the bill’s definition wasn’t specific enough.

 

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Any cellphone can be traced by its digital fingerprint


Tech-savvy criminals try to evade being tracked by changing their cellphone’s built-in ID code and by regularly dumping SIM cards. But engineers in Germany have discovered that the radio signal from every cellphone handset hides within it an unalterable digital fingerprint – potentially giving law enforcers a simple way of tracking the handset itself. Developed by Jakob Hasse and colleagues at the Technical University of Dresden the tracking method exploits the tiny variations in the quality of the various electronic components inside a phone.

 

“The radio hardware in a cellphone consists of a collection of components like power amplifiers, oscillators and signal mixers that can all introduce radio signal inaccuracies,” Hasse says. A phone’s resistance, for instance, can vary between 0.1 and 20 per cent of its stated value depending on the quality of the component. The upshot of these errors is that when analogue signals are converted into digital phone ones, the stream of data each phone broadcasts to the local mast contains error patterns that are unique to that phone’s peculiar mix of components. In tests on 13 handsets in their lab, the Dresden team were able to identify the source handset with an accuracy of 97.6 per cent.

 

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America's Police State Marches On, While Russia Grants Snowden Political Asylum


BREAKING!:  It could well be that the harsh pretrial treatment of Bradley Manning and the harsh verdict handed down against him Tuesday may have been what convinced Russian authorities of the validity of National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden’s appeal for asylum, which his Russian attorney and his father have both now announced has been granted this morning. (Snowden in his application asserted that he cannot hope to receive a fair trial in the US, where Washington leaders have been publicly calling him a traitor and have been clamoring for harsh punishment, and where even the president has condemned him as a “hacker,” instead of a whistleblower who exposed the nation’s ubiquitous spying on all electronic communications of all Americans in wholesale violation of the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution). Snowden has reportedly left the Moscow airport where he had been stranded by US revocation of his passport, and has entered Moscow as a political refugee from US state terror.

 

The New York Times, in an editorial published the day after a military judge found Pvt. Bradley Manning “not guilty” of “aiding the enemy” — a charge that would have locked him up for life without possibility of parole and could have carried the death penalty — but also found him guilty on multiple counts of “espionage,” called the verdict — not guilty of aiding the enemy, guilty of espionage — “Mixed.” The Times editorial writers were as mixed up as the judge, though.

 

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