Skip to main content

HuffPo reports that the NSA "has been gathering records of online sexual activity and evidence of visits to pornographic websites as part of a proposed plan to harm the reputations of those whom the agency believes are radicalizing others...." Those targeted include a US person. The basis for arguing that these people were "radicalizers" is tenuous, probably applying to the majority of Middle Easterners.

Ryan Grim of the Huffington Post reports as follows:

The National Security Agency has been gathering records of online sexual activity and evidence of visits to pornographic websites as part of a proposed plan to harm the reputations of those whom the agency believes are radicalizing others ... The document, provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, identifies six targets, all Muslims...
...
None of the six individuals targeted by the NSA is accused in the document of being involved in terror plots. The agency believes they all currently reside outside the United States. It identifies one of them, however, as a "U.S. person," which means he is either a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident.
...
While Baker and others support using surveillance to tarnish the reputation of people the NSA considers "radicalizers," U.S. officials have in the past used similar tactics against civil rights leaders, labor movement activists and others.

Under J. Edgar Hoover, the FBI harassed activists and compiled secret files on political leaders, most notably Martin Luther King, Jr. The extent of the FBI's surveillance of political figures is still being revealed to this day....
...
James Bamford, a journalist who has been covering the NSA since the early 1980s, said the use of surveillance to exploit embarrassing private behavior is precisely what led to past U.S. surveillance scandals.

[ACLU's Jameel] Jaffer, however, warned that the lessons of history ought to compel serious concern that a "president will ask the NSA to use the fruits of surveillance to discredit a political opponent, journalist or human rights activist."

"The NSA has used its power that way in the past and it would be naïve to think it couldn't use its power that way in the future," he said.

What was the basis for thinking that these people--none of whom did anything other than speak-- were dangerous? In one case, "a well-known media celebrity" believed that the US perpetrated the 911 attacks. And that justified using the NSA to smear him by telling people he looked at dirty pictures, or whatever. Virtually none of the contacts of these people were involved in a militant group, much less the "radicalizers" themselves.  

Think if the same criteria were applied to AmericanChristians who argue that killing Muslims is justified, who believe that the US brought 911 on itself or was somehow involved in the plot, or who think that an uprising against the government is justified. At a guess, that describes 20% of the American population. And in the Middle East, people with similar ideas are probably a majority.

Also note that what the NSA is doing is not just intelligence work, but propaganda. This is a worrying bit of mission creep.  

Your tax dollars at work!  

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  It is Preposterous to Believe the US Gov't Would (21+ / 0-)

    do this to its political activists exercising their rights of free speech, assembly and petitioning their government for redress.

    --Dr. Martin Luther King

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 08:59:26 PM PST

  •  Old news. (22+ / 0-)

    Government has been doing this since the Adams administration, so there's no reason to complain about it now.

    I sound just like them, don't I?

    Politics means controlling the balance of economic and institutional power. Everything else is naming post offices.

    by happymisanthropy on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 09:10:15 PM PST

  •  It's one thing to dig up dirt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    northsylvania, artmartin

    on people, in case you need it. It's another to actually use it against them. The digging up dirt part I understand - they are a spy agency, after all. It's distasteful that they may spy on innocent people but that's the nature of the spy business. If they threaten to or actually release the ino, though, I hope that it would get senior sign-off, and be for a VERY good reason. I trust Obama, but may not trust his successors, so I hope Obama is able to finish this ugly business before he's gone.

    •  There is no indication that anything will change (37+ / 0-)

      This sort of thing is very dangerous, doc2. It is the sort of abuse that characterized Cointelpro: identify an activist--like Martin Luther King, find something to use against him, and then use it to discredit the movement.

      And, just as worrying, it has already been used against a US citizen or permanent resident. That person may have been outside the country--or perhaps the NSA simply tapped a cable that entered international waters. In any case, it represents something even more sinister than Cointelpro, since the FBI was never able to tap more than a fraction of all phone conversations. Following the Church Committee and the exposure of Operation Shamrock, the NSA respected the firewall between domestic and foreign intelligence.

      As I have diaried elsewhere, what is increasingly evident is that NSA activities are largely useless in protecting us. This not just in my opinion, but that of several members of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

      •  Dangerous indeed (10+ / 0-)

        And Obama's actions are anything but assuring as to him "finishing this".

        Good diary, CharlesII!

        If you get a chance check out my terrible attempt at a rap poem response to the latest Homeland Security "Kill Switch" news at EPIC.

        •  Thanks for the rap poem, Choco8 (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Choco8, caul, Tool, stevemb

          I don't get a chance to read as many diaries as I would like. Thanks for linking that one.

        •  Obama's actions? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Aquarius40, native

          What actions?  What evidence do we have the the President has personally overreached one iota on the NSA intelligence?  Instead the EVIDENCE is he has put many actions in place to try and slowly rein things in.  The operative word is slowly.  We just had the 30 year anniversary of JFK's assassination, a President that pushed back hard against the intelligence services.  

          •  Photographic Evidence (4+ / 0-)

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

            by stevemb on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:32:07 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Pursuant to your point, Russell Tice (one of the (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CharlesII, Lost and Found, J M F, Tool, native

            NSA whistle-blowers who tried to work within the system) has alleged that he personally saw documentary evidence that the NSA was bugging Obama himself, as early as 2004 (before Obama was even elected to the U.S. Senate).

            If such is the case, Obama can hardly be blamed for going 'slowly' against an operation that may have the power to ruin him or besmirch his family or friends.

            Ugh.

            •  Excellent point, Charles (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Lost and Found, Tool

              Once that became publicly known, Obama must have seen the dangers it posed to a democratic system, if not also to him and his family.

            •  He Can Be Blamed (0+ / 0-)

              If you're the president, you should be willing to face anything however bad in fulfilling your duty. Especially if you're the first Black president you shouldn't take the job unless you can take anything that comes at you.

              When Martin Luther King Jr realized he'd be killed for his activism, he did more with whatever time he had left. He paid the price, but we were all made better by his sacrifice.

              You are merely saying that for Obama the presidency is just a job he does for pay. That might be a reasonable standard for most jobs, but not for the presidency. Hell, we expect more than that from our firemen and soldiers.

              "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

              by DocGonzo on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:19:29 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I agree, but we must balance our proclivity to (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                native, CharlesII

                blame with our desire to understand and forgive, yes?

                Please allow me to put this another way: recognizing that Obama is but one man inside a larger system (even though as President he wields much direct and indirect power), what exactly would you have him do? Use his bully pulpit to rail against the surveillance state, use his power of appointments to dump Clapper and the entire wasps' nest of rogues, use executive orders to curtail sharply the powers of the NSA and related agencies? Or something else?

                Now add in the strong possibility that the NSA and its sister agencies through their perfidy have somehow got the drop on President Obama and which of the actions could he take that would hold the possibility of actually fixing matters or even improving them?

                Recognizing that the spooks may have bugged the entire Congress and its staff, I still think the solution should come from the legislature using its power of the purse to defund and defenestrate the organs of the security state.

                •  Forgive? (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  CharlesII

                  I would have Obama appoint better executives in charge of spying, and everywhere, as #1 priority to do whatever he can towards eventual removal of this existential threat. He's supposed to be good at this stuff - it's ultimately what he ran on in the biggest picture.

                  Why would I forgive him taking a essential job he isn't up to doing? I sure don't forgive Bush for that.

                  "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

                  by DocGonzo on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 08:28:06 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Well, fine, let's have a conversation... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Lost and Found, J M F, Tool

            Let's have a conversation.

            Like the Church Commission.

            That would be a fine conversation.

            And since Obama is completely innocent of any of the things that worry us about US intelligence collection, he has nothing to fear.

            Art, you're right: there's no evidence that Obama personally ordered any of it. There's also no evidence period about what has occurred since January 2009 except that which Snowden has released.

      •  English version (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        caul, The Geogre, Tool, stevemb

        Paul Flowers, the leader of the Co-op bank, which strongly supports Labour, has just found that out.
        Meanwhile, Jamie Dimon, gets to celebrate at Buckingham Palace.

        "The 'Middle' is a crowded place - that is where the effective power is - the extreme right and left might annoy governments, but the middle terrifies them." Johnny Linehan

        by northsylvania on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:40:49 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Really? (15+ / 0-)

      You really are ok with the wholevspying thing as long as it is Obama doing it, but not if Bush or Romey did it?  
      Just wow.
      Bush / drones - bad.
      Obama / drones - good.
      Unbelieveable.

      Passing a law that the Constitution doesn't allow does not negate the Constitution, it negates the law that was passed. Secret courts can't make up secret laws. SORRY FOR THE TYPOS :)

      by snoopydawg on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 10:36:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The President is not an Absolute Monarch. (18+ / 0-)

      Whether a President approves or disapproves; issues orders or doesn't issue orders, the apparatus remains the apparatus.

      How many holdovers / sympathizers of, say the neo-Cons or Christian [sic] Dominionists, or just paranoid rightwing racists (and we've had those all along) have access, and/or supervision, of the data just sitting there? We don't know but you can bet money it's much more than we'd like.

      In every tyranny going back to at least the 16th C., likely before, one of the first things the tyrant does is seize all the personal records kept on everyone and weed out the potential -- potential -- troublemakers.

      Hell, even in the earliest empires you can find records: so-and-so lives here, does that, owns this, believes this creed, has a criminal record or not...

      The modern US is composed of the same general stock as the rest of humanity for time out of mind. The pool of individual data is easily turned into a whip. It can happen overnight, and it can happen to anyone.


      Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

      by Jim P on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 10:41:30 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Executive powers are pretty scary... (20+ / 0-)

        And have been, really since Roosevelt.

        The OSS operated under FDR without any outside oversight. Its successors, the CIA and the NSA were established by Truman and had virtually no independent oversight.  The FBI was almost a rogue operation during the entire Hoover reign.

        Nixon turned the FBI, CIA, and NSA to his own purposes.

        The first president to claim the right to seize a person without charge or trial and send him to a foreign country where we knew he would be tortured was Clinton. Obama has claimed the right to execute an American without charge or trial.

        The world is a scary place, full of nuclear weapons, crackpot adversaries with nuclear weapons, terrorists, and so on. It takes a great deal of faith to say that we can restrain and defeat them even while maintaining civil liberties.

        But then the Constitution is a document based on an abiding faith: a faith that even those who are not the best and the brightest nor the most patriotic nor even the nicest contribute to making us a better country. It is when we honor the dignity of all by recognizing their human rights, enunciated by the Constitution, that we are best able to resist those who would do us harm.

        One simple example: during WW II, the US had to assume that African Americans might be inclined to help the Japanese. Why? Because we had denied them basic rights. Why should they be loyal to the US?

        Indeed, we doubted the loyalty of Japanese Americans during WW II, interning them, because we knew they had good reason to have grievances against the government. We did not doubt the loyalty of the German Americans as a group, even though many of them had joined the Bund, because their rights had been respected. A failure to respect rights leads to national division and weakens a nation.

        If what the NSA was doing was effective, one might be able to justify it. It isn't. It is wrecking the foundations of this country.

        We need to pare back Executive power, especially with regard to the military and intelligence.

        •  Circular logic, isn't it? (6+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          caul, Tool, stevemb, Lost and Found, Dave925, J M F
          we doubted the loyalty of Japanese Americans during WW II, interning them, because we knew they had good reason to have grievances against the government
          First you intern (or as we say nowadays, "detain") innocent people, denying them their human rights and giving them a grievance against the government. Oops! Now they're dangerous because they have that grievance! So we have to intern ("detain") them. Maybe even forever.

          Even beloved author and cartoonist Dr. Seuss was extremely racist when it came to Japanese and Japanese Americans.

          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 Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:53:00 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Hence my sig line. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DeadHead, Tool, stevemb
          •  Yes. Doing wrong is one of the main causes... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            J M F

            In human history, doing wrong is one of the main causes for doing more wrong. That's why it's so important to halt the cycle early on and refuse to tolerate gaybashing, anti-Semitism, racial profiling, etc.

            There had been a long history of discrimination against Asians. Foreshadowing the "anchor baby" meme, even people who were born here were denied citizenship. The violence against Asians wasn't as extreme or widespread as against African Americans, but they were denied most rights. And then WW II came along, and Japanese were depicted with as much viciousness as the worst anti-Black propaganda. At the very same time as a number of valiant young nisei were fighting bloody battles in Italy.

          •  Guantanamo (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CharlesII

            The US has been in the business of manufacturing enemies within its borders for profitable tyranny since before the country was founded.

            "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

            by DocGonzo on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:21:54 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  the Guaranty Clause gurantees a (7+ / 0-)

          republican form of government. The executive was not designed to be a secret branch. Now contaminates courts and legislative branch. Secrecy violates the GC. The antimasonics won the political debate early on against secret oaths generally.

    •  Finish ugly business? You said this is the norm. (8+ / 0-)

      Why would you want him to put an end to it if it's just the way spying works?

      "The Democratic Party is not our friend: it is the only party we can negotiate with."

      by 2020adam on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 10:56:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  lol. "Distasteful" (11+ / 0-)

      Yes. I'd say it's just a tad bit "distasteful" to spy on innocent people.

      Whenever I read a comment of yours on this topic, I instantly contemplate what it would be like if someone like you actually ran one of these spy agencies.

      And chill runs down my spine.




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

      by DeadHead on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 10:57:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  And how will you feel (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tool, stevemb, Lost and Found

      when you find out they gathered dirt on you?

      "Spying" means against foreign governments and nationals, not your own. Please see above comments re: J. Edgar Hoover, MLK, etc.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 04:23:10 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Obama Lets This Go On -- He's NOT Trustworthy nt (0+ / 0-)

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

      by stevemb on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:30:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Nixon's Plumbers Were OK (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CharlesII, J M F, greenbastard, Tool

      When Nixon's CIA henchmen burgled the Democratic National Committee election headquarters at the Watergate Hotel to learn strategic info and find evidence incriminating Nixon in bribery by Howard Hughes, that was terrible. That was Watergate.

      By your logic, it would have been "the nature of the spy business" if Nixon's henchmen had just wiretapped the DNC HQ, right? Nothing to see here, move along.

      Wrong. The 4th Amendment prohibits the government from even surveilling people without a court warrant issued on probable cause through due process. Yes, government people will break the rules, but when discovered they must be caught and the powers they abused reformed to minimize those abuses.

      We are a Constitutional democracy, after all - not a police state. Or aren't we?

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:14:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  With the NSA in your computer, watching (23+ / 0-)

    Your every word, and every expressed political thought, it won't take much for them to decide that you are "radical" if you ever express a concern or disagreement with government policy.  It's bad enough the NSA is going all
    J. Edgar Hoover on our asses, now they're going Comstock too, and monitoring our sexual Peccadillos. And if they ever decide you are a threat, how easy is it for them to insert a few visits to child porn sites into your computer history?  If they call you a predator, they never have to drag your political free speech into court.  You're done.
    (Speaking of the general "you", of course.)

    •  Yeah, it's all too easy to tamper with computers (10+ / 0-)

      This is the kind of power no agency should want. The people who work there may be wonderful, liberty-loving, and just.

      But when a system is dependent on the virtue of its overseers to be just, it will be corrupted. It's just a matter of time.

    •  It is trivial to insert a few visits to child porn (5+ / 0-)

      sites using what is called a "man in the middle" attack.  You see, when you go to www.cnn.com your computer accesses a DNS server that says "ok, that is actually at 157.166.248.11 (you can try it yourself*, as here is the link http://157.166.248.11).  Now, all it would take is for the NSA to intercept that request and replace that IP address with a child porn server, "preferably" one they run and control.

      *That does not always work with some sites as they use virtual hosting however you can use /etc/hosts or c:/windows/system32/drivers/etc/hosts (replace / with a backslash in the Windows example) to do something similar.  For example, if you try it with Dkos you just get "It works! The web server software is running but no content has been added, yet."  Of course, since the NSA would (presumably) be the ones secretly behind the child porn server in question they could configure it so that it would work properly.

      You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

      by Throw The Bums Out on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 09:52:55 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Omg time to lose sleep (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aquarius40

      Sure seems to me my extensive friends list of political activists that have been extremely vocal in every communications media imaginable, are still doing it.  None of them have been pulled kicking and screaming from their beds and thrown into prisons.  None of them have given me one shred of evidence that someone's watching their every word and interfering in their lives.

      Hell, if Obama and the NSA were guilty of the many transgressions the sux people on here blamed them for, every last one of the haters would be having nasty things done to their lives.  Yet all we see is a country relatively safe from horrendous terrorist acts.....except....for domestic terrorism from the armed and dangerous far right wing nuts.  That to me indicates that the focus is not on Americans.

      Sure the data is rife for future abuse and there needs to be a slowdown in its collection, but to do that requires a liberal and progressive Congress, not administrative action.  So let's keep the emphasis on electing that body not tearing down the few advances we've made.

  •  First they spied on the radicalizers . . . . (10+ / 0-)

    He who would trade liberty for security deserves great customer service.

    by Publius2008 on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 10:24:48 PM PST

  •  I wonder if future presidential candidates are (8+ / 0-)

    going to be saying "I looked at porn sites but I didn't get off".

    Disturbing stuff.

    Tipped and recced.

    "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

    by Lawrence on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 10:59:50 PM PST

    •  You can bet on it. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tool

      I've watched them operate while going after activists using informants that actually encouraged elicit behavior and to use that behavior to get more information from other activists. So yeah, you can bet they have dossiers on just about anyone that could pose a problem.

      ~War is Peace~Freedom is Slavery~Ignorance is Strength~ George Orwell "1984"

      by Kristina40 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:32:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Ok… so… who exactly are the targets? (3+ / 2-)
    Recommended by:
    artmartin, ord avg guy, Inland
    Hidden by:
    stevemb, MrBigDaddy

    Just more generalized Greenwald buffoonery, implying that the NSA MIGHT be monitoring YOUR porn activities.  What is that term for using half truths and partial information to forward an agenda?  Oh, right, PROPAGANDA.

    'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

    by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:04:49 AM PST

    •  The targets are... (9+ / 1-)

      Ignorant trolls who think this is propaganda.

      That excludes you, of course, so you have nothing to worry about.




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

      by DeadHead on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 01:41:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  DBAD (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Inland

        If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

        by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 05:35:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Double dbag. Remove your bs hr & I will do the (0+ / 0-)

          same.

          “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

          by Tool on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 05:47:04 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Where Have We Heard Such Proposals Before? (0+ / 0-)

            This "fair and balanced" suggestion is straight out of the Tangerine Dreamer's playbook ("I'll give you a concession (not trash the global economy) if you give me a concession (repeal the signature policy you got elected to enact)".

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

            by stevemb on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:38:28 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Explain why it's a "bs hr" in the context (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Inland

            of DH making a personal, insulting attack against a member of this site simply because he doesn't agree with the comment. My understanding is that is exactly the kind of behavior this community is supposed to moderate.

            Aren't we all responsible for community moderation?

            I'll counter your offer. If you can explain why this:

            The targets are...
            Ignorant trolls who think this is propaganda.
            That excludes you, of course, so you have nothing to worry about.
            is not a violation of Kos's DBAD rules for his site and I'll remove my HR.

            You'll have to PM the HRer though, since he didn't leave a comment for you to respond to.

            If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

            by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:51:43 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  As opposed to making a blanket derogatory (0+ / 0-)

              statement insinuating that anyone who Recs this diary is paranoid and that us "grenwaldians" are fussing over nothing. Dbag begets debag and both are not right.

              “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

              by Tool on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:43:36 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Weak tea, Tool. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                luvbrothel

                You really have to twist into a pretzel to make the case that luvbrothel's comment insinuates "that anyone who Recs this diary is paranoid and that us "grenwaldians" are fussing over nothing".

                His comment insinuates that there is some context missing from the story and that the missing context provides an opening for Greenwald  to propagandize.

                You don't have to agree with that comment. You can argue that the context (who the targets are) is irrelevant. You can argue that Greenwald (or Grim or CharlesII) is not a propagandist. You can argue that this story is part of a larger story, another piece of the puzzle if you will, and that in that context it is revealing. The latter is the intent of most of the comments that I've read in this thread.

                What you're not allowed to do, on this site, is to not address the comment at all except to attack and insult the commentor. That's known as "being a dick", and it's supposed to be moderated on this site so that you, and the diarist, and anyone else who disagrees with luvbrothel's comment can debate why he's wrong without the distraction of a pie fight over who is acting like a troll.

                Deadhead didn't want to do that. He violated the standards of this site to make a personal attack. DBAD.

                If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

                by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 08:28:05 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  Actually, I think it is probably not a violation (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Tool, Lost and Found

              Deadhead skated around the edge. If he had labeled his remark "sarcasm," it would have violated rules. But he, in effect, said, that Luvbrothel was not a troll. Yes, one can almost see the sarcasm dripping down the edge of that. But one's imagination is not the basis for an HR.

              And remember the context. Luvbrothel is labeling an article written by Spencer Ackerman, a well-regarded progressive, as "propaganda."  Contrary to what Luvbrothel claims, the article doesn't imply that the NSA might be monitoring American porn activities. It states that it did monitor such activities of an American citizen or permanent resident. If one wanted to be very strict about it, that's CT.  

              I think downrating remarks like Deadhead's is petty. I also think downrating Luvbrothel's remark is petty. My advice is for tool and stevemb to withdraw their HRs and for artmartin and you, ord avg guy, to withdraw yours.  

              •  As it is your diary and I do not want to (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                CharlesII

                derail an important discussion. Removed.

                “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.” George Orwell

                by Tool on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:48:08 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Correction: article is by Ryan Grim (0+ / 0-)

                And Ryan Grim is also a respected etc. etc.

              •  In deference to you... (0+ / 0-)

                the diarist, I'm removing the HR.

                But your deflection to Luvbrothel's comment to provide "context" for DH's is disingenuous. It doesn't matter what Luvbrothel posted. Deadhead has to abide by the rules of this site just like anyone else. If he doesn't like a comment he can ignore it, he can explain why the commenter is wrong, he can do a full on attack on the ideas expressed by the comment. That's what everyone else who replied to Luvbrothel did. That's what you did below. Nothing wrong with that. That's what this site is for.

                Deadhead chose to BAD. He didn't go after the comment. He went after the commenter. That's how pie fights start. That's how diaries get disrupted. That's how conversations get derailed. And that's why all of us, including Deadhead, aren't supposed to BAD.

                If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

                by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:43:12 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  Obviously abusive hrs... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lost and Found

        I'd complain to admin but I doubt they'd care.

        •  I'm begging you (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Inland

          to report the "abusive" HRs to admins. Community moderation is everyone's responsibility. If you think DeadHead replying to a comment he doesn't agree with by calling the author an "ignorant troll" is in keeping with standards of this site as set out but the site owner than you have a responsibility to report it.

          I think ad homs and personal insults go against the DBAD guidelines od DKos, and have given the appropriate response. You need to respond appropriately as well and report me to the admins.

          If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

          by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:41:02 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  He didn't call him an ignorant troll. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Lost and Found, CharlesII

            Read the comment again.
            Slowly.

            •  (.....) (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ord avg guy
              That's what trolls do. They post antagonistic comments that aren't quite HRable, and when people respond in kind, the troll proceeds to blame the target of the antagonism for the reactions he inspires, and in the process, makes himself look like he's the victim.
              Of course, we all know who I'm quoting: the person who was as big a dick as he could be without actually calling someone a troll explicitly, in the hopes of starting a pie fight.

              So go tell the admins.  

              If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

              by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:49:28 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  You just called him a dick. (3+ / 0-)

                A direct insult, far more insulting than what he wrote which was directed at no one in particular. But the admins won't care.

                I get that. It's why I spend less time here.

                •  I didn't use any names! (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  ord avg guy

                  Under the "Let's all Pretend to be Stupid" directive, I wasn't insulting anyone, just as DeadHead wasn't insulting anyone with his comment because he added a disclaimer that a shelled oyster would know was facetious.

                  Here's my suggestion: instead of everyone pretending to be stupid in order to give a patina of legitimacy to comments that are as dickish as they are prevalent, in order to harass legitimate commenters, let's not.

                  There's no upside in pretending to be dumber than we are.  Never is.

                  If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

                  by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:17:57 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Nailed it! (0+ / 0-)

                    If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

                    by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:18:46 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  As did you: the only meanings (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      ord avg guy

                      that could be assigned DeadHead's comments are hostility to badger the poster or pure nonsense.  While DeadHead's posting nonsense is well precedented, the fact it appears in posts to people who disagree with the diary constantly and pervasively means there's hostile intent.

                      If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

                      by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:24:14 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                •  Illegitimi non carborundum, dcl06 (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Lost and Found, dclawyer06

                  I agree with you. One could as easily HR Inland--but he hasn't named the person he called out.

                  Just as Deadhead hasn't actually called luvbrothel a troll.

                  And luvbrothel's labeling of an article by Ryan Grim "propaganda" is also potentially HRable as CT.  

                  These are all borderline violations, better left alone.

            •  "Read the comment again. Slowly." (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Inland

              Great suggestion! Let's give it a try....

              Ok. So when I read the comment again, slowly, DH is saying that the target of the NSA, as it pertains to this diary, is "ignorant trolls".

              Is that what you're suggesting, counselor? That DH thinks the NSA is tracking the porn habits of 6 Muslim ignorant trolls? Is that really your defense of his comment?

              If that's what you honestly believe DH was saying than you really do need to report me to the admins for my "obviously abusive" HR.

              Perhaps I give DH too much credit. It seemed obvious to me, and others, that he was dickishly responding to a comment he didn't agree with by going after the commenter. But maybe you're right. Maybe he literally meant that he thinks the NSA targets were 6 Muslim ignorant trolls. Is that what you think?

              If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

              by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 07:09:25 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Did luvbrothel say that R. Grim is a propagandist? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                dclawyer06

                It certainly seems to me that was the point of luvbrothel's comment. It sounds like CT to me. Ryan Grim is a well-respected writer. He presented documents proving that a US citizen/permanent resident was smeared for no reason other than his beliefs.

                I think Deadhead was trying to say that the target of the article is ignorant trolls, though one can certainly read it otherwise.

                So... why not HR luvbrothel's comment? I think it's disruptive.

                When the strictness by which one applies HRs follows one's opinions rather than the community rules, they're being misused.

                •  Understand the definition of PROPAGANDA (0+ / 0-)

                  Now go the 'article'.  Does anyone know who these targets are, or the history?  No.  The HP article specifically says that they don't know if this happened, yet goes on to delve into J. Edgar Hoover's illegal spying to create an equivalency to something they admit to not knowing about.  And then go through the responses.  The intention of the article is obvious:  The NSA might be spying on YOUR porn activity.

                  That's how it works.  That's ALL I'm saying.  Ambiguity.

                  How is THAT being a 'troll' or being 'disruptive'?  If a prosecutor was telling a jury that they should just trust his interpretation of evidence he says he has but won't let you see, would you just lie down and let him beat you to death with it?

                  'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

                  by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 09:38:53 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You have totally, totally mischaracterized (0+ / 0-)

                    Your statement that:

                    Does anyone know who these targets are, or the history?  No.
                    is blatantly false.  It's either a lie or one of the worst examples of reading I have ever seen. Grim states:
                    The Huffington Post is withholding the names and locations of the six targeted individuals; the allegations made by the NSA about their online activities in this document cannot be verified.
                    HuffPo is withholding the names because they know exactly who these individuals are.

                    As for me understanding what propaganda is, it's an absurd and offensive implication. You state:

                     The intention of the article is obvious:  The NSA might be spying on YOUR porn activity.
                    One of the people who was spied on was an American, either a citizen or a permanent resident. Spying has already occurred on Americans' porn activity. A bright line has been crossed. The NSA is not supposed to be engaged in spying on Americans. The fact that it's also smearing this fellow is an even more shocking.  

                    I have made no wider implications about the story, nor has Ryan Grim. Jameel Jaffer of the ACLU sees what anyone who is paying attention would see: NSA spying on an American represents a precedent, and a bad one.

                    I am really tired of the pie fight that you and others who have refused to read the article or seriously consider the diary have turned this thread into. Unless you're prepared to actually discuss articles honestly, I'd be grateful if you would stay out of any threads I write.

                    •  LoL. Classic (0+ / 0-)

                      The Huffington Post 'knows' who these targets are, but have deemed you unworthy of knowing the secrets that they say we should all know.

                      Convenient, don't you think?  How do you control the message?  By controlling the content.  How do you fill in the missing content?  By leading, i.e. J. Edgar Hoover.

                      I mean, Gawd, its so freakin' obvious… and, sorry to say, you will NEVER get the blue stained dress.  NEVER.

                      'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

                      by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 03:40:39 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                •  Not sure there's much point to this (0+ / 0-)

                  if you're going to pretend not to understand Deadhead's comment. But I'll play along for a moment...

                  "Did luvbrothel say that R. Grim is a propagandist?"
                  No, he didn't say anyone was a propagandist, did he? If we're applying the "Let's all Pretend to be Stupid" directive, then I can accept that Deadhead wasn't actually calling luvbrothel if you can accept that luvbrothel didn't actually call anyone or anything propaganda. And if we see that luvbrothel's comment doesn't call anyone a propagandist (he merely defines what propaganda is) then that sort blows apart your whole "CT" notion, yes?

                  Is this really where you want to take discourse all for the defense of Deadhead's comment?

                  "I think Deadhead was trying to say that the target of the article is ignorant trolls, though one can certainly read it otherwise."
                  But that's not what Deadhead said, at least not all of what he said, right? He didn't just say "ignorant trolls", he said "Ignorant trolls who think this is propaganda". When you get the whole statement how does that fit with the "target of the article", as you suggest? Propaganda is mentioned once in the HuffPo piece, and in that context it's Al Qaeda propaganda. It's not mentioned at all in your diary. And yet Deadhead brings it up in conjunction with ignorant trolls in response to a comment he doesn't like that defines propaganda. Do you see how your response to that could sure appear like dissembling Deadheads comment?

                  I didn't HR luvbrothel's comment because it didn't violate any site rules. Lest we forget, that's what HRs are supposed to be for. That's why I HRed Deadhead's comment.

                  Of the folks who disagree with  luvbrothel's comment and we're able to articulate a reason; you said it was CT, Tool said it insinuates "that anyone who Recs this diary is paranoid and that us "grenwaldians" are fussing over nothing", and Blicero said he was a liar. Why should I HR something that you guys can't even agree why it should be HRed? And the claims that are posted a specious at best.

                  But credit where credit is due. At least you guys gave a reason for not liking the comment. You posted complaints that luvbrothel could reply to and try to defend his "disruptive" comment.

                  Deadhead didn't do anything like that. He just attacked with name calling. There is no way luvbrothel can reply to Deadhead that could in any way be discourse, debate or discussion. Deadhead took that off the table.

                  Sorry, that's not what this site is for. We have rules in place to defend against Deadhead's behavior. The rules only work though when we all enforce them and don't just all act stupid when someone on "our side" breaks the rules.

                  Have a great Thanksgiving.

                  If Liberals hated America, we'd vote Republican.

                  by ord avg guy on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 01:26:44 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

      •  The self appointed harrasser of posters appears (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ord avg guy

        to drop a comment that manages to be nothing but bile.  

        It doesn't even make sense.  It's the work of someone who thinks his function is to find someone who isn't toeing the party line and BAD.

        If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

        by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:32:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  So, in other words (0+ / 0-)

        you have NO idea what propaganda is, thus explaining the blind following of Greenwald's accusations.

        Troll.  LOL!  Another typical Greenwald response to questions.

        'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

        by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 09:19:19 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Far from buffoonery. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lost and Found, J M F, greenbastard

      And here's a protip for you: The FBI is doing it domestically. I know this for a fact. Have a nice day.

      ~War is Peace~Freedom is Slavery~Ignorance is Strength~ George Orwell "1984"

      by Kristina40 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:33:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  And? (0+ / 0-)

        The question isn't wether they are or not, rather if its legal or not.  If building a case, then to be admissible, it would have to be legal.

        I'm glad you know this as a 'fact'.  Most people do, like Geico can save you 15% in 15 minutes.

        'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

        by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 09:43:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  However if they are just planning on releasing (0+ / 0-)

          it to the media and/or using it to get you fired from your job then it doesn't have to be legal.  

          You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

          by Throw The Bums Out on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 10:33:44 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  So, it comes down to 'potential' abuse (0+ / 0-)

            Heck, there's a potential for abuse in just about everything.

            Gathering intel on targets isn't a perfect science.  People will get caught in the web from time to time, but from what I've read from the few documents Greenwald has 'allowed' us to see, is that there's a whole myriad of rules, regulations, laws that seek to prevent abuse.  Sure, some are vague and could do with some clarification, but overall, actual violations are extremely rare.  

            Thom Hartmann likes to remind us that the Left believes that people are inherently GOOD.  I believe this to be true, also.

            'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

            by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:01:56 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Uprated for bad HRs and tag team abuse. nt (0+ / 0-)

      If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

      by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:38:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Um, no you fucking liar. It has actual (0+ / 0-)

      cases where it happened and named officials admitting it.

      You apologist, lying scum.

    •  Yes, propaganda is what NSA was engaged in (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shotput8, Lost and Found, Tool

      Taking someone's web browsing habits and using them to damage that person's reputation is "using half-truths and partial information to forward an agenda."

      •  You don't know that (0+ / 0-)

        Prove it.  Even the HP/Greenwald post specifically says they don't know if this happened.

        The Left better wise up and demand accountability from its sources, rather than engaging in typical FOX style unfounded banter.  If there's NO difference, then no one is going to be taken seriously.

        'Slower Traffic - Keep Right!'

        by luvbrothel on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 09:21:58 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I'd love to see a break down of the NSAs... (9+ / 0-)

    history of 'protecting us' since inception and what that has cost the US tax payers.

    I think it would show the NSA isn't really there to 'protect us' at all. Its purpose is truly nefarious and the fact we allow it shows how far we have drifted from a true democracy.

    Most of our current federal spending does little for the citizenry as a whole. We pay for the muscle the multi-nationals use around the world to get their way.

    Sadly I've pretty much given up on the people taking their government back given how few pay enough attention to see how screwed up it is.

    The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function [Albert A. Bartlett]

    by fToRrEeEsSt on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:17:56 AM PST

  •  Gay Edgar Hoover All Over Again... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tool, Kristina40, stevemb

    the empire is apparently running scared, as they should be since our system is crumbling; doesn't work for tens of millions of our people.

    "The 1% don't want SOLUTIONS; they've worked very hard the last four decades to get conditions the way they are now".

    by Superpole on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 03:29:18 AM PST

  •  Slide down that slippery slope... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DuzT, Kristina40, stevemb, Lost and Found

    It starts with them, then spreads onward to political figures, to candidates, to would-be candidates and activists...

  •  Was Gov. Eliot Spitzer a radicalizer? (8+ / 0-)

    Any elected official or candidate who thinks they are not vulnerable to this kind of discrediting is not very smart --

    and most of them are probably very smart on this type of issue.

  •  Collectors collect and then they accumulate and (6+ / 0-)

    then they hoard and then, when they are challenged to explain their obsessive behavior, they come up with an excuse.
    Obsessions are irrational. The only rational response is to perform an intercession and call a halt. Members of Congress seem to make poor intervenors because they tend to be obsessives themselves.

    Obamacare at your fingertips: 1-800-318-2596; TTY: 1-855-889-4325

    by hannah on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 05:29:54 AM PST

  •  A must see - Greenwald speech at CAIR LA (8+ / 0-)

    Council American Islamic Relations annual meeting in LA

    Toward the end he describes how he has been subjected to the most extreme forms of surveillance himself so now knows the feeling of having no privacy. He is able to protect himself some what by using encrypted files and probably a special phone, or phone over the internet

    he also continues to give broader hints that it is not safe for him to physically return to the US. The war on journalism, i.e., the war on truth, continues to roll on with more people ending up in jail

    here is the link to his speech with special emphasis on the Muslim community in the US under special listening by the listening agencies

    http://www.youtube.com/...

    Also, here is a tweet this morning by Greenwald about the article that is the subject of this diary

    Glenn Greenwald ‏@ggreenwald 34m

    2 key facts about NSA porn-spying story: 1) none of targets is accused of terrorism; 2) targets include a US person http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

     
  •  Also (6+ / 0-)

    David Cameron announces filtering of websites in order "to keep our country safe"

    If the actions of the NSA and other security orgs seem ominous, they should.

  •  The FBI does (6+ / 0-)

    the same stuff against activists here.

    ~War is Peace~Freedom is Slavery~Ignorance is Strength~ George Orwell "1984"

    by Kristina40 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:01:23 AM PST

  •  And yet, no politicians seem worried. (0+ / 0-)

    The idea that there's a chance that such surveillance would be used at home is belied by the bigass yawn that NSA surveillance gets from US politicians, who would be the natural targets.

    Instead, there's people on the internet, who are flattering themselves into thinking that they are targets of persecution because they are on the internet saying stuff.

    If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

    by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:36:29 AM PST

    •  They know they are compromised. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lost and Found

      Acting worried after you're already captured is just silly. Now, think about any people that would actually think about becoming politicians in the future but will not because they may be compromised?

      ~War is Peace~Freedom is Slavery~Ignorance is Strength~ George Orwell "1984"

      by Kristina40 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:41:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Seems like CT to me. (0+ / 0-)

        Every single politician not only surfs porn, but would be embarrassed by it, and the NSA thinks that it could get away with leaking the information in a method that is both credible and not traceable back to it.

        That's CT, because the lack of evidence of a conspiracy is deemed proof that the conspiracy is universal and seemless.

        If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

        by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:44:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Except that we know from Grim's article... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Kristina40

          You mischaracterize what Kristina said as follows:

          Every single politician not only surfs porn, but would be embarrassed by it, and the NSA thinks that it could get away with leaking the information in a method that is both credible and not traceable back to it.

          That's CT, because the lack of evidence of a conspiracy is deemed proof that the conspiracy is universal and seemless.

          Kristina didn't say that politicians fear that they might be compromised because of porn. Surveillance states create paralyzing fear because no one knows what any of their actions could be used against them. Maybe someone had an affair. Or his daughter had an abortion. Or maybe he's secretly gay. Or maybe he had a flirtation with the Socialist Worker's Party. Almost anything can be turned into a bludgeon, as watching the 15 second attack ads around an election attests.

          You've mischaracterized what she said.

          But just as bad, the article itself lists an example of web browsing habits being used to damage the reputation of a US citizen or permanent resident. There is zero evidence he is tied to terrorism. It's a political hit.

          Failure to see evidence that is plainly before one's eyes is just as much CT as seeing something that isn't there.  

          •  I was deeply involved (0+ / 0-)

            in certain groups that were infiltrated by the fbi by using informants. I know what they are capable of. In fact, I helped expose what they are capable of. I have quite a few friends sitting in jail that know these things as well. #AntiSec #CabinCr3w

            ~War is Peace~Freedom is Slavery~Ignorance is Strength~ George Orwell "1984"

            by Kristina40 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 09:06:20 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  And yet, there's nobody saying they have such fear (0+ / 0-)

            because, like all CT, the fact that nobody says they have such fear is proof that we ALL have such fear.  The less evidence, the more the CT is proven.

            It's a dead end.

            So I'll just speak for myself.  I can't get excited by any of this stuff.  It seems like a waste of money, but there's nothing new about that either.  It seems that Congress should be better informed, but Congress doesn't, and there's nothing new about that either.

            If you have a policy that covers doctor's bills made necessary by a werewolf bite, and has the words "Health Insurance" on the cover, you can keep that policy!

            by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 09:55:57 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Inland, this is false and disingenuous (0+ / 0-)

              You claim that "there's nobody saying they have such fear" of surveillance.

              Well, I am afraid of surveillance.

              I took a pen name when I started writing political pieces. I was afraid that it could hurt my business. I was afraid that right-wingers might target me. I was even afraid that--since the government was collecting files on Quakers and peace activists-- that they were probably collecting a file on me. And since there's very little anonymity on the Internet, a pen name is no shield.

              What made me keep writing was the knowledge that if one allows fear to rule one, then one is already unfree.

              So do not tell me that people are unafraid. Those of us who write knowing that we take risks are the patriots. People who dismiss and deny the sacrifices we make are not.

              And my experience is quite typical.

              Pen America writes NSA Surveillance Drives Writers to Self-Censor
               

              Writers are not only overwhelmingly worried about government surveillance, but are engaging in self-censorship
              as a result: 28% have curtailed or avoided social media activities, and another 12% have seriously considered doing so.

              24% have deliberately avoided certain topics in phone or email conversations, and another 9% have seriously considered it.

              16% have avoided writing or speaking about a particular topic, and another 11% have seriously considered it.

              I have diaried on how fear wrecks societies, chokes creativity, and ruins their prosperity. The writers go into great detail on surveillance.

              Never repeat the canard you have issued or I will call it a lie.  

              •  So you took a pen name out of (0+ / 0-)

                fear of political reprisal?

                Mind telling me what that has to do with surveillance?  The federalist papers were written under pen names.  So?

                If Hobby Lobby is against contraception, why does it buy its inventory from China, the country that limits the number of children by law?

                by Inland on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 12:05:43 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Would you mind admitting that what you said was... (0+ / 0-)

                  Would you mind admitting that what you said was false?  

                  I am very, very tired of this Inland, and I am a pretty patient guy. You have not engaged in genuine debate. Go back and read my original post and try again.

    •  Who Will Bell The Cat? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lost and Found

      With a few praiseworthy exceptions, politicians prefer to go along to get along.

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

      by stevemb on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:46:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Somewhat to the side, but... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wayoutinthestix

    A few years ago, I posted a pro-Single Payer comment on LinkedIn, in my grad school alumni group.

    Notoriously conservative group so I felt like tweaking a few noses.

    Anyway, on LinkedIn as you may know, you can see who browsed your profile. And mine was browsed by someone in a defense/intel-type agency (I cannot remember which one, and I know that makes the story less powerful, but it truly was someone wayyyy out of the usual people who hit my profile).

    It was really creepy. And of course, that is nothing compared to this diary story.

  •  Brain Bleach, Please (0+ / 0-)
    The National Security Agency has been gathering records of online sexual activity and evidence of visits to pornographic websites as part of a proposed plan to harm the reputations of those whom the agency believes are radicalizing others through incendiary speeches
    As amusing as it might be, I do not need to know if this Kodak moment inspired or was inspired by perusal of adult web sites:

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

    by stevemb on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 06:44:23 AM PST

  •  thank you for this diary (0+ / 0-)

    Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. --Edward Abbey

    by greenbastard on Wed Nov 27, 2013 at 08:20:07 AM PST

  •  Hypocrisy must be germane (0+ / 0-)

    If you use MLK as an example of gov't cointel, you have to acknowledge that he is one of the most revered Americans ever (and one of the most influential people in his own time). I have no doubt that the FBI dug up plenty of dirt on him, but it doesn't seem to have hurt his reputation.

    Revealing MLK's flaws as a human just makes his work as a civil rights leader more impressive. He wasn't Jesus; he was just a man and look what he was able to accomplish before his life was cut short.

    It doesn't work, at least in part, because hypocrisy needs to be germane. And human nature is such that if you tell a group that their revered leader is a sinner they're going to stone you, not him.

    This story encapsulates my problem with the NSA. It's not the breathless "scandals" or the extensiveness and brazenness of their data trawling; it's that their whole program is a series of naval-gazing thought-experiments.

    "What if we could collect every piece of data ever sent everywhere in the world?" OK. Now we have petabytes of largely useless data. What do you want to do with it?
    "What if we could sort through all this information to find the conversations of one person?" OK. We made tools that can find people. Who should we look for?
    "What if we could devise an algorithm to analyze all this information and figure out which people we need to watch?" OK. We made tools that can infer who the bad guys might be. What do you want to do with it?
    "What if we could collect dispiriting information on these people and use it as propaganda?" OK. A couple of these guys enjoy looking at porn. What good does that do us?

    They don't have a clue what the information is for or how it could be used. They just know they need it. The existence of the program is the justification for the program, ad infinitum.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site