Monday, June 24, 2013

Greenwald Exposes Gregory

Turns out the host of Meet the Pre$$ is nothing but a government mouthpiece.

"Guardian reporter defends decision to publish NSA data" by Frederic J. Frommer |  Associated Press, June 24, 2013

WASHINGTON — Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald defended his actions Sunday when asked on national television why he shouldn’t be charged with a crime for having ‘‘aided and abetted’’ former National Security Agency analyst Edward Snowden.

Greenwald replied to David Gregory, the host of NBC’s “Meet the Press,’’ that it was ‘‘pretty extraordinary that anybody who would call themselves a journalist would publicly muse about whether or not other journalists should be charged with felonies.’’

Yeah, it is.

‘‘If you want to embrace that theory, it means that every investigative journalist in the United States who works with their sources, who receives classified information is a criminal, and it’s precisely those theories and precisely that climate that has become so menacing in the United States,’’ said Greenwald.

Well, that may very well be true. 


Six Zionist Companies Own 96% of the World's Media

Actually, it is looking like the lying, distorting, and obfuscating mouthpiece media is staffed and owned by criminals.

Gregory responded that ‘‘the question of who is a journalist may be up to a debate with regard to what you are doing.’’ 

Wow, is that ever a low blow. 

Btw, Dave, they gobbled up all your communications, too, but I guess you don't have to worry, right?


Later, Greenwald tweeted, ‘‘Who needs the government to try to criminalize journalism when you have David Gregory to do it?’’ and, ‘‘Has David Gregory ever publicly wondered if powerful DC officials should be prosecuted for things like illegal spying & lying to Congress?’’

Snowden disclosed surveillance programs that collect vast amounts of online data and e-mail, sometimes sweeping up information on ordinary American citizens. 

Not sometimes, you distorting piece of crap, it was all the time, everything, going back decades.

Officials have the ability to collect phone and Internet data broadly but need a warrant to review specific cases where they believe terrorism is involved.... 

So the slavish AmeriKan media say.

Since revealing himself as the principal source for reports in the Guardian and the Washington Post, Snowden had been in hiding in Hong Kong.

The United States sought his extradition but officials in Hong Kong rejected that, saying the US petition did not pass muster.

The former NSA contractor has had his passport revoked, although that alone probably would not thwart his travel.

No, it didn't.


Related: Glenn Greenwald Tells Comcast and DOJ Lackey David Gregory to Shove It 

10 Questions for MSNBC Host Who Shamelessly Suggested Greenwald Be Arrested for NSA Leaks

I'm also a reporter. I report on reporters.

"Edward Snowden sets sights on Ecuador; Security worker flees Hong Kong for Russia, may seek flight to Cuba" by Peter Baker |  New York Times, June 24, 2013

WASHINGTON — US authorities scrambled Sunday to figure out how to catch Edward J. Snowden, the former national security contractor accused of espionage, as he led them on an international chase, frustrating the Obama administration and threatening to strain relations on three continents.

He's accused of spying? For who, the American people? He's more like a whistleblower!

Related: Slow Saturday Special: Globe Leaks Galore 

Must have plugged them all because nothing on the nuclear leaks and nothing on the other scandals engulfing this administration.

Diplomats and law enforcement officials from the United States warned countries in Latin America not to harbor Snowden or allow him to pass through to other destinations after he fled Hong Kong for Moscow, possibly en route to Ecuador or another nation where he could seek asylum.

Snowden managed to elude capture just as US officials were asking Hong Kong authorities to detain and send him to the United States on charges that he illegally disclosed classified documents about global US surveillance programs. He was aided in his escape by WikiLeaks, the anti-secrecy organization, whose founder said he helped arrange special refugee travel documents from Ecuador....

I don't like their involvement and it makes me suspicious; however, I'm glad the kid leaked.

The turn of events opened a startling new chapter in a case that had already captivated many in the United States and around the world.

It sure has. The world is furious about this. The collection and storing of all world communications for decades is bad enough, but the revelations of US government hacking the computers of other nations as they pontificate from their high horse about cyberattacks is a big shit pile in the middle of the room.

Snowden’s transcontinental escape was seen as a fresh embarrassment for the Obama administration and raised questions about its tactics in the case, such as its failure to immediately revoke Snowden’s passport.

It also further complicated Washington’s ties with Russia and China, where at least some officials take delight in tweaking what they call American double standards. 

And yet somehow the press and politicians over here have turned it into Russia and China the bad guys.

Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, said in an interview from his own refuge in the Ecuadoran Embassy in London that he had raised Snowden’s case with Ecuador’s government and that his group had helped arrange the travel documents. Baltasar Garzón, the renowned Spanish jurist who advises WikiLeaks, said in a statement that “what is being done to Mr. Snowden and to Mr. Julian Assange — for making or facilitating disclosures in the public interest — is an assault against the people.”

Obama administration officials privately expressed frustration that Hong Kong allowed Snowden to board an Aeroflot plane bound for Moscow on Sunday despite the American request for his detention. But they did not revoke Snowden’s passport until Saturday and did not ask Interpol to issue a “red notice” seeking his arrest.

An administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said no red notice was requested because they are “most valuable when the whereabouts of a fugitive are unknown.” Snowden was known to be in Hong Kong, so....

That's weak! It's almost as if they wanted him to escape.

President Obama, who has drawn criticism since the disclosure of domestic telephone data and foreign Internet communications surveillance programs, remained silent on the latest developments Sunday.

Nixon called it stonewalling.

Legal experts said the administration appeared to have flubbed Snowden’s case.

“What mystifies me is that the State Department didn’t revoke his passport after the charges were filed” June 14, said David H. Laufman, a former federal prosecutor. “They missed an opportunity to freeze him in place.” He said he was also puzzled by the decision to unseal the charges Friday rather than waiting until the defendant was in custody.

While officials said Snowden’s passport was revoked Saturday, it was not clear whether the Hong Kong authorities knew by the time he boarded the plane, nor was it clear whether revoking it earlier would have made a difference given the Ecuadoran travel document that Assange said he helped arrange....

Assange sought refuge in the Ecuadoran Embassy in London a year ago to avoid being sent to Sweden for questioning in a sexual offense investigation, but British authorities have not permitted him to leave the country without risking arrest. Snowden could end up in a similar predicament, accepted by Ecuador or another country but unable to get there.

Snowden’s presence on Russian territory dealt a fresh blow to a relationship that has deteriorated sharply over the past year over issues such as Syria and human rights. Yet Russian leaders seemed to be making efforts to keep his visit relatively quiet, not parading Snowden before cameras or trumpeting his arrival.

“We have nothing to do with this story,” said Dmitri S. Peskov, a spokesman for President Vladimir Putin. “I am not in charge of tickets. I don’t approve or disapprove plane tickets. We’re not the proper people to address this question to.”

Ecuador, like Cuba and Venezuela, has expressed antipathy toward what it considers arrogant US policies in Latin America and demonstrated with its decision to shelter Assange that it was willing to defy Washington. Ricardo Patiño Aroca, the country’s foreign minister, said in a Twitter message that an asylum request from Snowden had been received, and he later scheduled a news conference for Monday.

How long Snowden can evade arrest remained to be seen? In an interview with The Guardian this month, he expressed pessimism.

“You can’t come up against the world’s most powerful intelligence agencies and not accept the risk,” he said. “If they want to get you, over time they will.”

Yup, even if they have to kidnap and render you to black sites (or even kill you like they did Michael Hastings).


RelatedMusical on Arnold will acknowledge his ties to Conn. city

Also see‘Deeply troubling’ if Snowden was allowed to flee, Kerry says

It was your state department that f***ed up. Maybe if you weren't taking so many global-warming plane rides to service Israel's concerns this wouldn't have happened.


NSA Spying and Intelligence Collection: A Giant Blackmail Machine and “Warrantless Wiretapping” Program

Is the Government Spying On You Through Your Own Computer’s Webcam Or Microphone?

"This Really is Big Brother: The Leak Nobody's Noticed

June 23, 2013

Even before a former U.S. intelligence contractor exposed the secret collection of Americans’ phone records, the Obama administration was pressing a government-wide crackdown on security threats that requires federal employees to keep closer tabs on their co-workers and exhorts managers to punish those who fail to report their suspicions. 
President Barack Obama’s unprecedented initiative, known as the Insider Threat Program, is sweeping in its reach. It has received scant public attention even though it extends beyond the U.S. national security bureaucracies to most federal departments and agencies nationwide, including the Peace Corps, the Social Security Administration and the Education and Agriculture departments. It emphasizes leaks of classified material, but catchall definitions of “insider threat” give agencies latitude to pursue and penalize a range of other conduct. 
Government documents reviewed by McClatchy illustrate how some agencies are using that latitude to pursue unauthorized disclosures of any information, not just classified material. They also show how millions of federal employees and contractors must watch for “high-risk persons or behaviors” among co-workers and could face penalties, including criminal charges, for failing to report them. Leaks to the media are equated with espionage. 
“Hammer this fact home . . . leaking is tantamount to aiding the enemies of the United States,” says a June 1, 2012, Defense Department strategy for the program that was obtained by McClatchy.

When the free free press, explicitly protected in the bill of rights becomes equivalent to an "enemy of the United States" something very, very bad is happening.

The administration says it's doing this to protect national security and that it is willing to protect those who blow the whistle on waste, fraud and abuse. But that is not how the effect of this sort of program is going to be felt. After all, it's being implemented across the federal government, not just in national security:
The program could make it easier for the government to stifle the flow of unclassified and potentially vital information to the public, while creating toxic work environments poisoned by unfounded suspicions and spurious investigations of loyal Americans, according to these current and former officials and experts. Some non-intelligence agencies already are urging employees to watch their co-workers for “indicators” that include stress, divorce and financial problems.

“It was just a matter of time before the Department of Agriculture or the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) started implementing, ‘Hey, let’s get people to snitch on their friends.’ The only thing they haven’t done here is reward it,” said Kel McClanahan, a Washington lawyer who specializes in national security law. “I’m waiting for the time when you turn in a friend and you get a $50 reward.”
The Defense Department anti-leak strategy obtained by McClatchy spells out a zero-tolerance policy. Security managers, it says, “must” reprimand or revoke the security clearances – a career-killing penalty – of workers who commit a single severe infraction or multiple lesser breaches “as an unavoidable negative personnel action.” 
Employees must turn themselves and others in for failing to report breaches. “Penalize clearly identifiable failures to report security infractions and violations, including any lack of self-reporting,” the strategic plan says. 
The Obama administration already was pursuing an unprecedented number of leak prosecutions, and some in Congress – long one of the most prolific spillers of secrets – favor tightening restrictions on reporters’ access to federal agencies, making many U.S. officials reluctant to even disclose unclassified matters to the public. 
The policy, which partly relies on behavior profiles, also could discourage creative thinking and fuel conformist “group think” of the kind that was blamed for the CIA’s erroneous assessment that Iraq was hiding weapons of mass destruction, a judgment that underpinned the 2003 U.S. invasion.
I don't know about you, but that does not sound like freedom. In fact, it sounds like something else entirely to me.

This government paranoia and informant culture is about as corrosive to the idea of freedom as it gets. The workplace is already rife with petty jealousies, and singular ambition--- it's a human organization after all. Adding in this sort of incentive structure is pretty much setting up a system for intimidation and abuse.

And, as with all informant systems, especially ones that "profile" for certain behaviors deemed to be a threat to the state, only the most conformist will thrive. It's a recipe for disaster if one is looking for any kind of dynamic, creative thinking. Clearly, that is the last these creepy bureaucrats want.

This is the direct result of a culture of secrecy that seems to be pervading the federal government under president Obama.  He is not the first president to expand the national security state , nor is he responsible for the bipartisan consensus on national security or the ongoing influence of the Military Industrial Complex.This, however, is different. And he should be individually held to account for this policy.:
Administration officials say the program could help ensure that agencies catch a wide array of threats, especially if employees are properly trained in recognizing behavior that identifies potential security risks.
“If this is done correctly, an organization can get to a person who is having personal issues or problems that if not addressed by a variety of social means may lead that individual to violence, theft or espionage before it even gets to that point,” said a senior Pentagon official, who requested anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to discuss the issue publicly. 
“If the folks who are watching within an organization for that insider threat – the lawyers, security officials and psychologists – can figure out that an individual is having money problems or decreased work performance and that person may be starting to come into the window of being an insider threat, superiors can then approach them and try to remove that stress before they become a threat to the organization,” the Pentagon official said. 
The program, however, gives agencies such wide latitude in crafting their responses to insider threats that someone deemed a risk in one agency could be characterized as harmless in another. Even inside an agency, one manager’s disgruntled employee might become another’s threat to national security. 
Obama in November approved “minimum standards” giving departments and agencies considerable leeway in developing their insider threat programs, leading to a potential hodgepodge of interpretations. He instructed them to not only root out leakers but people who might be prone to “violent acts against the government or the nation” and “potential espionage.” 
The Pentagon established its own sweeping definition of an insider threat as an employee with a clearance who “wittingly or unwittingly” harms “national security interests” through “unauthorized disclosure, data modification, espionage, terrorism, or kinetic actions resulting in loss or degradation of resources or capabilities.” 
“An argument can be made that the rape of military personnel represents an insider threat. Nobody has a model of what this insider threat stuff is supposed to look like,” said the senior Pentagon official, explaining that inside the Defense Department “there are a lot of chiefs with their own agendas but no leadership.” 
The Department of Education, meanwhile, informs employees that co-workers going through “certain life experiences . . . might turn a trusted user into an insider threat.” Those experiences, the department says in a computer training manual, include “stress, divorce, financial problems” or “frustrations with co-workers or the organization.” 
An online tutorial titled “Treason 101” teaches Department of Agriculture and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration employees to recognize the psychological profile of spies.

A Defense Security Service online pamphlet lists a wide range of “reportable” suspicious behaviors, including working outside of normal duty hours. While conceding that not every behavior “represents a spy in our midst,” the pamphlet adds that “every situation needs to be examined to determine whether our nation’s secrets are at risk.” 
The Defense Department, traditionally a leading source of media leaks, is still setting up its program, but it has taken numerous steps. They include creating a unit that reviews news reports every day for leaks of classified defense information and implementing new training courses to teach employees how to recognize security risks, including “high-risk” and “disruptive” behaviors among co-workers, according to Defense Department documents reviewed by McClatchy.  
“It’s about people’s profiles, their approach to work, how they interact with management. Are they cheery? Are they looking at or The Onion during their lunch break? This is about ‘The Stepford Wives,’” said a second senior Pentagon official, referring to online publications and a 1975 movie about robotically docile housewives. The official said he wanted to remain anonymous to avoid being punished for criticizing the program. 
The emphasis on certain behaviors reminded Greenstein of her employee orientation with the CIA, when she was told to be suspicious of unhappy co-workers. 
“If someone was having a bad day, the message was watch out for them,” she said. 
Some federal agencies also are using the effort to protect a broader range of information. The Army orders its personnel to report unauthorized disclosures of unclassified information, including details concerning military facilities, activities and personnel. 
The Peace Corps, which is in the midst of implementing its program, “takes very seriously the obligation to protect sensitive information,” said an email from a Peace Corps official who insisted on anonymity but gave no reason for doing so. 
Granting wide discretion is dangerous, some experts and officials warned, when federal agencies are already prone to overreach in their efforts to control information flow. 
The Bush administration allegedly tried to silence two former government climate change experts from speaking publicly on the dangers of global warming. More recently, the FDA justified the monitoring of the personal email of its scientists and doctors as a way to detect leaks of unclassified information.

Wow. That is a real kick in the head to those that have loyally served this country and done everything that was asked of them. 


The "Where's Snowden" search continues:

"With Snowden at large, US ramps up criticism; White House leans on Russia to turn him over" by Peter Baker and Ellen Barry |  New York Times, June 25, 2013

WASHINGTON — Frustrated Obama administration officials pressed Russia on Monday to turn over Edward J. Snowden, the national security contractor who disclosed surveillance programs, while warning China of “consequences” for letting him flee to Moscow.

Hey, I've got a complete rewrite on my hands! Yay! 

And that part I highlighted? PFFFFFT! Once again we have the poker players of the EUSraeli empire going against the chessmasters of China and Russia. Screw you guys and your fake provocation for war! 

Seriously, what can the U.S. do? China's banks are going belly up (missing in my Globe, of course), and the one thing they might want to do is call in all those Treasury bonds.

As Snowden remained out of sight, apparently holed up in Moscow awaiting word of his fate, what started as a dramatic escape story involving a self-described whistle-blower evolved into a diplomatic incident in which the United States faces an open rift with one major power and a tense standoff with another. Hopes for a quick resolution had faded by nightfall....

Secretary of State John F. Kerry called on Russia to expel Snowden.

“I would urge them to live by the standards of the law, because that’s in the interest of everybody,” Kerry said.

For a law-breaking government to make that statement.... hey, the hypocrisy is not lost on the rest of the world.

He pointed out that the United States in the past two years had transferred seven prisoners Russia had sought, although the parallel is not exact, since Snowden is not being held by the Russian government.

At the White House, President Obama’s press secretary, Jay Carney, reinforced what he called “our frustration and disappointment with Hong Kong and China,” calling their refusal to detain Snowden a “serious setback” in relations....

We going to stop hacking them, Jay?

US officials also openly mocked China and Russia as states that repress free speech and transparency and therefore are hardly apt refuges for someone fighting government secrecy in the United States. 

This as Obama has a privacy meeting that is closed to the press, invokes state secrets at endless trials, and has been obsessed with leaks (except for their own pr purposes).

“I wonder if Mr. Snowden chose China and Russia as assistants in his flight from justice because they’re such powerful bastions of Internet freedom,” Kerry said sarcastically during a stop in New Delhi.

Related: Carbon Tax Coming to Massachusetts 

Kerry makes global warming worse every time he opens his mouth.

Carney said Snowden’s chosen destinations indicated “his true motive throughout has been to injure the national security of the United States.”

The strong words went beyond typical diplomatic language and underscored the growing ramifications of the case for the United States. The Obama administration’s inability, at least for now, to influence China, Russia and countries in Latin America that may accept Snowden for asylum, like Ecuador, brought home the limits of US power around the world.

A range of US officials, including the deputy secretary of state and the FBI director, spent the day reaching out to their Russian counterparts seeking cooperation without any apparent result.

Maybe we shouldn't have lied to them about Tsarnaev.

US intelligence officials remained concerned that Snowden could make public more documents disclosing details of the National Security Agency’s collection system or that his documents could be obtained by foreign intelligence services, with or without his cooperation.

Yes, apparently the ma$$ media has only made about 10% of what is on his powerpoint presentation available.

Technical experts have been carrying out a forensic analysis of the trail he left in NSA computer systems, trying to determine what he had access to as a systems administrator and what he may have downloaded, officials said.

Glenn Greenwald, a columnist for The Guardian, has said that Snowden gave him thousands of documents, only a tiny fraction of which have been published. Many may be of limited public interest, but they could be of great value to a foreign intelligence service, which could get a more complete idea of the security agency’s technical abilities and how to evade its net, officials said.

Is that last sentence ever a bunch of bulls*** or what? Yeah, nothing to see here as they scoop up and store  all planetary communications.

Snowden’s flight from Hong Kong to Moscow on Sunday put the United States at odds with onetime cold war rivals just as Obama was trying to ease tensions over a variety of other friction points.

In the past few weeks, he hosted President Xi Jinping of China on a visit to California and met with President Vladimir Putin of Russia in Northern Ireland.

Related: Sunday Globe Specials: Chinese Chat 

Also see: Getting in a Round of Golf at the G8

That should update you.


I think I see him!

"Ecuador leader considers Snowden asylum request; Decision could cement Rafael Correa’s role in the region" by Joshua Goodman |  Bloomberg News, June 25, 2013

QUITO, Ecuador — A decision by Ecuador to embrace fugitive Edward J. Snowden would represent President Rafael Correa’s boldest attempt yet to step out from the shadow of the late Hugo Chavez and establish himself as Washington’s leading critic in Latin America.

Correa, 50, has long relished his role as a US adversary, and last year put his anti-American rhetoric to the test by allowing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to take refuge at Ecuador’s Embassy in London.

In considering an asylum request by the former National Security Agency contractor, the stakes are even higher, after Secretary of State John F. Kerry lashed out at China and Russia for granting safe passage to the self-described whistle-blower. Whereas Assange is wanted for questioning in Sweden in rape and sexual molestation cases, Snowden is evading charges under the US Espionage Act.

‘‘For Correa this is a chance for him to pick a fight, which he relishes,’’ said Michael Shifter, president of the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington. ‘‘He’s no Chavez, but rhetorically he sees himself as a spokesman for the anti-American left in Latin America.’’

Ecuador’s foreign minister, Ricardo Patino, said Monday that Ecuador is considering an asylum request by Snowden, whose actions he praised.

‘‘The man who is shining light and seeking transparency over acts that affect the fundamental liberties of everyone is now being pursued by those that should give explanations to the government and citizens of the world,’’ Patino told a news conference in Hanoi on Monday....

Whether it is a snow job psyop or not that first part is important.

Snowden, a former Booz Allen Hamilton Holding employee, said the United States had hacked Chinese and Hong Kong targets since 2009 and had tapped Chinese mobile phone companies to steal millions of text messages, according to the South China Morning Post....

Yeah, THAT is why the U.S. is PISSED! It has nothing to do with the outing of the continuing collection efforts directed at the American people.


And look what else appeared in my Globe today:

"IRS chief says screening was wider than first disclosed" by Alan Fram |  Associated Press,  June 25, 2013

WASHINGTON — The IRS screening of groups seeking tax-exempt status was broader and lasted longer than has been previously disclosed, the new head of the agency said Monday.

Translation: we were lied to!

An internal document said that besides ‘‘Tea Party,’’ lists used by screeners to pick groups for close examination included the terms ‘‘Israel,’’ “Progressive,’’ and ‘‘Occupy.’’

Yeah, this was known MONTHS AGO, and is NOT NEW! 

What is not being said in this article is THOSE GROUPS WERE NOT DENIED THEIR STATUS or made to WAIT AS LONG! 

This is nothing more than a pathetic attempt at damage control regarding an impeachable offense! 

Of course, finding out "Israel" was a target puts the whole appearance of the spying scandal in my jewsmedia into context, doesn't it?

In a conference call with reporters, Danny Werfel’s comments suggest the IRS may have been targeting groups other than those in the Tea Party movement and his comments also indicate that the use of inappropriate terms lasted longer than had been revealed previously....

Translation: We were LIED TO AGAIN!