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Court Denies NSA Request To Hold Phone Records Beyond 5 Years

Unknown Lamer posted about 7 months ago | from the destroy-evidence-protect-privacy dept.

Government 46

itwbennett writes "As Slashdot readers will remember, last month the U.S. government 'petitioned the court system' to let the NSA retain phone call metadata for more than 5 years, ironically 'because it needs to preserve it as evidence for the various privacy lawsuits filed against the government.' Well, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court has ruled against that request. The FISC's Presiding Judge Reggie B. Walton ruled Friday (PDF) that the proposed amended procedures would further infringe on the privacy interests of U.S. persons whose 'telephone records were acquired in vast numbers and retained by the government for five years to aid in national security investigation.'"

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god damnit (1)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46450655)

they want to destroy the evidence.

oh yeah, Snowden has a message for you guys about the radar/satellite weapons and surveillance tactics that aren't getting enough public media coverage. maybe the FISA court is responsible for authorizing thousands of rapes and murders by the NSA, NRO, FBI, and DOD using directed energy weapons and various mind invasive technologies : http://www.wikileaks-forum.com... [wikileaks-forum.com]

Re:god damnit (1)

Garridan (597129) | about 7 months ago | (#46450819)

I wonder... could we force them to keep metametadata? Y'know, summaries of what fields were copied out of what databases of what companies on what days? That way, we could still have a snowball's chance at proving that individual customers had their privacy impinged. Of course, this is all rhetoric: no, we can't force them to keep anything, and no, we wouldn't have a snowball's chance at proving shit against the fed. Fun idea, though, having a government that behaves responsibly.

Re:god damnit (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about 7 months ago | (#46450901)

I don't think the meta meta data matters that much. The issue at hand is the scope and invasiveness of their program. This can be amply demonstrated by examining the data they will still have available. The additional older data won't add that much.

Re:god damnit (2)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 7 months ago | (#46450851)

they want to destroy the evidence.

RTFA.
The people suing haven't asked for the records to be preserved.
If/when that happens, then the court will revisit the issue.

I'm guessing that the "American Civil Liberties Union, U.S. Senator Rand Paul, and the First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles" aren't collectively so stupid that they overlooked a small detail like asking for the preservation of evidence.

Re:god damnit (1)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46450887)

what if no one ever asks for it to be preserved, and they destroy it and later refuse to preserve it even if someone does request that?

they do that. they don't want the public to have a say in anything that could expose their corruption. as far as I'm concerned, it's all done to hide their corruption and abuse of the public.

Re:god damnit (2)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 7 months ago | (#46451239)

So all you five pp's never raise the question whether or not the NSA
should have such records in the first place?
Well... I guess it's you country -- be blessed with it.

Default Judgement then? (1)

krelvin (771644) | about 7 months ago | (#46450667)

Does that mean that since the Gov can't maintain the Evidence for the suits filed against them for privacy issues, that the people suing will get default judgments? Most likely not... another catch 22 for citizens... can't win either way.

Re:Default Judgement then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46450727)

Don't use a phone . Like Stallman . If you can't do that , be under surveillance and live in staziland as you presently do.

Re:Default Judgement then? (2)

quarterbuck (1268694) | about 7 months ago | (#46451057)

No, yet another court order [bloomberg.com] says that NSA has to retain the records for the purposes of a lawsuit. This one was filed by EFF, asking the court to stop the deletion of data as per the court order in this slashdot story. The EFF lawyer actually says that
The March 7 FISC ruling was “based on a mistaken belief that no preservation order existed for the material,” Cohn said.
This new order was in San Fransisco and not a FISC court.

Re:Default Judgement then? (1)

marcgvky (949079) | about 7 months ago | (#46451329)

The government has developed capabilities far beyond those revealed by Snowden. It is virtually impossible for anyone to stay off of the net. While driving down the highway, your auto is being tracked by license plate and your face by facial recognition, so that your location can be re-played. They have open access to VisaNet and other transaction processing networks. This information is readily accessible to non-military agencies, without a warrant. Although, in theory, they cannot use that information against you without a warrant.

Combine the aforementioned data with a few carefully place Stingrays and it's impossible for a "normal person" to remain unobserved.

Snowden was just scratching the surface. He may, in fact, be a "plant" to throw people off of the actual scope and breadth of things in the domestic intelligence biz.

cold fjord implodes in 3...2...1... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46450677)

Oh look, it's oversight! But it's against what NSA wants to do! Kill the traitors! Don't worry the government has oversight over the NSA! Traitor! Oversight! Traitorsight!

A haiku (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46451117)

Oh friend! Pity me!
I have read what Cold Fjord wrote!
Butt hurt! No ointment!

That IS good news! (1)

rmdingler (1955220) | about 7 months ago | (#46450703)

Now then, at least if they do keep the records longer than 5 years they are in the wrong.

The cynic in me wants to take over this post with a they'll probably do it anyway slant, but it's been a long Monday and I try to leave that guy at work, so I'm going to go with:

Maybe, just maybe, all our bitching is not in vain and the war for the preservation of privacy is still being waged.

Re:That IS good news! (-1, Troll)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46450779)

Now then, at least if they do Maybe, just maybe, all our bitching is not in vain and the war for the preservation of privacy is still being waged.

what if I told you that they don't even do most of the spying via these phone records, the real surveillance was all being done with satellites and radar, including a technology called TAMI or Thought Amplifier and Mind Interface, which was patented in 1974, and deployed in all radar in 1976? Today they are using this during black operations to extract your thought, passcodes, images, and sound from your mind, humming to the tune of 1.4 terabytes per second, and this is all being stored in bits and pieces in the DODs databases.

Also, at any time, you or your family, if they cross a government agent, can and will succumb to attacks by the government with directed energy, rapes and murder before you even knew how it was being done. COINTELPRO (FBI), MKULTRA (CIA), MINARET (NSA), all these programs, started as soon as the damn covert surveillance agencies started up business back in the 1950s, and some of these abuses started even as early as the 1940s before their creation. These programs all continue today, and PRISM, and these other worthless programs are just a continuation of them. Senator Frank Church's Committee investigated and exposed many of these programs in 1975, leading to the creation of FISA in 1978, only to have all these programs continue in total secrecy.

None of it ever ended. You have never had privacy. The 4th amendment doesn't mean shit to these losers. They are watching you in your home right now, listening to everything you think and do. Time to start from scratch .. and we need a new investigation to find out how far this really goes.

PS. Satellites and radar allow them to view you even under cover of buildings, thanks to non-visible EMF emissions of neurons, radar, and electrical wiring, that basically keep the inside of matter illuminated. There are things viewable outside of the light spectrum, people..

More details, including information from whistleblowers Dr. Robert Duncan and Russell Tice over on this page: http://www.wikileaks-forum.com... [wikileaks-forum.com]

Mostly bullshit. (2, Insightful)

Immerman (2627577) | about 7 months ago | (#46451357)

Can you offer any independent confirmation of such accusations? There is a serious problem in that accusations like this tend to come from the lunatic fringe, 98% of which is almost certainly total BS, and most of the 2% which proves true seems to be lucky guesses rather than actually based on evidence (i.e. even a stopped clock is right twice a day). I think Snowden did a good job of exposing the fact that world governments are in fact up to some really evil, underhanded shit, but how is a rational actor who doesn't want to spend their life wading through total bullshit up to their eyebrows supposed to sort through the unconfirmed claims? Hell, I can point out dozens of patents for conceptual devices that can't possibly work but were granted anyway - one of the down sides to removing the working model requirement. And that video - I watched maybe 20 seconds before the glaringly obvious opportunistic mid-sentence cuts convinced me that no trustworthy information could possibly be gleaned from it. If the fellow designed mind-control devices it should be easy enough for him to build another - where's the example of him demonstrating it by making some deserving politician utterly humiliate themselves in public? Or extracting political secrets verified by digging up the definitive evidence. Hell, I'm thinking of a number between one and ten, what is it?

So my question to anyone reading, is there any place a concerned citizen can go where skeptical minds tear apart these sorts of ridiculous accusations and discover the occasional kernel of truth within them? In today's world that seems like an important task, and one that would appeal to individuals of a certain temperament.

Re:Mostly bullshit. (0)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46452239)

Yes I can. Please fucking click through to the link.

Confirmed whistleblowers:

Dr. Robert Duncan, MIT, Harvard, and Darthmouth grad, worked for the Department of Defense, CIA, US DOJ, designed many of the software components behind these weapons, the "artificial intelligence". He confirms so much about these weapons, he personally designed many tracking software pieces for the Navy, and satellite software for the FBI/US DOJ including heart rate monitoring, breathe monitoring, and license plate tracking, just to name a few features.

"Voice of god" weapon is the ability to direct energy at your skull from space or radar to make you hear god, or whatever they want you to hear for mind control purposes and torture. It uses pulse modulated microwaves that once absorbed into your skull or soft tissue, create vibrations which travel to your cochlea and are interpreted as sound that only you can hear, thereby simulating schizophrenia.

On top of that, his books disclose TAMI, Thought Amplifier and Mind Interface, and radar tricks, including the ones used to down planes in the Bermuda Triangle (all attacks from the USA/Puerto Rico radar field, NOT paranormal shield as the DOD tried to make everyone believe).

Mark Phillips is a CIA operative who worked in CIA Project MKULTRA for mind control development who backs Dr. Robert Duncan up. More weapons details, including Mark Phillips and Dr. Robert Duncan interview, and the patents here: http://www.oregonstatehospital... [oregonstatehospital.net]

A US Investigative Service employee that I cannot disclose personally told me about these weapons and her belief I was targeted by them for psych/weapons experimentation. Listen to her here, with transcripts of our conversation: http://www.oregonstatehospital... [oregonstatehospital.net]

NSA whistleblower Russell Tice also backs this up; Americans are being targeted during black operations. Senators, journalists, lawyers, banks, judges (Judge Alito of the US Supreme Court was targeted, for example). They are spying on Americans to control us, know how to manipulate and trick us to hide their crimes and abuses!

Even Obama, Barack Obama, was targeted in 2004 after winning the Illinois caucus, by the NSA. They vetted the douche, helped him rise to Presidency. Russell Tice confirmed it on Abby Martin; the whole fucking election was basically fabricated.

Lastly but not least, there are many PhD scientists who believe in this and back it up. I like Dr. Judy Wood, her work is really outstanding. She believes that there's a whole network of directed-energy weapons set up to target us which was funded through Strategic Defense Initiative. They also dustified the World Trade Center on 9/11. http://www.drjudywood.com/ [drjudywood.com]

Another scientist is.. Jim Fetzer, who believes Senator Paul Wellstone was assassinated in 2002 with an EMP blast/EMF weapon. His plane was targeted and crashed, the United States did this. http://assassinationscience.co... [assassinationscience.com]

Read about Aaron Alexis, being used to kill 12 Navy Yard's employees, and himself September 2013. He was targeted with this ELF weapon, they mind controlled and tortured him into doing this: http://communities.washingtont... [washingtontimes.com]

Re:Mostly bullshit. (0)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46452249)

http://www.coasttocoastam.com/... [coasttocoastam.com]

Dr. Robert's Duncan's biography is there from Coast to Coast.

"Robert Duncan

Biography: Dr. Robert Duncan holds multiple degrees from Harvard University and Dartmouth College amongst others. He has had the most expensive American education money can buy. He is an investigator, author, and soon be movie producer on the topics of directed energy, neurological weapons, psychological, and information warfare. His movie is called "The Enemy Within - Psychic Warfare". A book he is co-authoring will be out in a few months called "Hacking the Human Mind".

Dr. Duncan has worked as a business and information technology consultant to the Fortune 500. He has worked for companies like Oracle Corporation, BEA systems, HP, BBN, and as a professor at a college. For the department of defense he has written the artificial intelligence code to track the Soviet nuclear submarine fleet with passive and active acoustical arrays and has been to a couple secret NATA Navy underground bases in Europe."

More details on energy-weapon testing:

"Energy Weapons & Testing
Date: 12-05-06
Host: George Noory
Guests: Robert Duncan, Marc Siegel

Independent investigator Robert Duncan discussed directed energy and neurological weapons and his contention that they've been tested on the public at large. While directed energy is used in microwaves, to remove kidney stones, and in non-invasive surgery, it's also been developed extensively for military purposes, he reported.

The civilian population was targeted for experiments, in programs such as MK-ULTRA, starting after WW II, when Nazi scientists were imported to the US, some working on scalar or gravity weapons, said Duncan. The town of Taos, NM, where a hum was heard by many citizens, was the subject of a directed energy experiment by the U.S. Navy, he claimed. And most recently the Active Denial System (see article below) was tested on human subjects.

Duncan said he interviewed over 600 mind control victims, and found some validity to their allegations. There are weapons that can project voices into people's headssuch as one system known as "The Voice of God," he detailed. Blocking techniques include jamming the signals with electronic scramblers, and using shields with metal alloys or mylar. He recommended the following websites for further information/assistance: mindjustice.org, raven1.net, freedomfchs.com."

http://www.coasttocoastam.com/... [coasttocoastam.com]

Re: Mostly bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46452651)

Usenet.

Re:That IS good news! (1)

Hentai (165906) | about 7 months ago | (#46455181)

what if I told you that they don't even do most of the spying via these phone records, the real surveillance was all being done with satellites and radar, including a technology called TAMI or Thought Amplifier and Mind Interface, which was patented in 1974, and deployed in all radar in 1976? Today they are using this during black operations to extract your thought, passcodes, images, and sound from your mind, humming to the tune of 1.4 terabytes per second, and this is all being stored in bits and pieces in the DODs databases.

What if I told you that the mechanism you've described is physically impossible at the ranges you've described? Would you invoke some kind of captured alien technology to double-down on your claim?

You should watch "Mirage Men". The sorts of crazy that you're propagating has been proven, time and again, to come from the very government offices you're claiming are reading our thoughts.

Also, let's say you're somehow right, there's physical laws we don't know about, and this sort of Fortean weirdness is possible.

None of it ever ended. You have never had privacy. The 4th amendment doesn't mean shit to these losers. They are watching you in your home right now, listening to everything you think and do. Time to start from scratch .. and we need a new investigation to find out how far this really goes.

If anything you're saying were true, starting from scratch would be IMPOSSIBLE. The moment anyone even THOUGHT of a solution, the very thought would be thrown into that DOD database and people would move to stop it, BEFORE THE THOUGHT COULD EVEN BE COMMUNICATED.

If you're right, then those evil government mind-readers must WANT you to say what you just said, because if you didn't, they would have read your intent to post this message and moved to stop you.

Please follow through the implications of your own claims more thoroughly, and ask yourself "if this was true, would the world look like this?".

Re:That IS good news! (1)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46456811)

Range is no limitation for lasers and EMF my friend. For example, do the suns suddenly become unviewable at some distance? No? Then neither do your neurons or our radar systems to your brains.

When you're dealing with particle physics, which I suggest you study, you begin to learn how all this works, and it suddenly becomes feasible.

Also, the patent for this technology knows no limits. The signal to noise ratio is near infinite. Please click through to the actual sources of information and read before you post next time.

Re:That IS good news! (1)

Hentai (165906) | about 7 months ago | (#46458183)

...I'm being trolled, right?

Re:That IS good news! (0)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46458815)

I really think that you're a gifted individual. You understand some of the dilemmas involved, example:

"If anything you're saying were true, starting from scratch would be IMPOSSIBLE. The moment anyone even THOUGHT of a solution, the very thought would be thrown into that DOD database and people would move to stop it, BEFORE THE THOUGHT COULD EVEN BE COMMUNICATED."

This is exactly what is going on, so nobody from outside of their group can get knowledge of this system, or stop it. And if you do know about it, you're actually a target usually, and everything you think about trying to do is available to them, which can lead to a sense of the system being unescapable. If you get free from it, it is only because they let you. If they choose not to hack or sabotage you, it's only because they choose not to leave any evidence of it, because that cannot make it look like the hack came directly from you.

D:<

I offer you this book to read, which has the details you seek. It's called The Matrix Deciphered by Dr. Robert Duncan. If you email me at case@oregonstatehospital.net, I can also pass you his email address. He's also on Facebook otherwise (the only Robert Duncan there is).

The Matrix Deciphered plus his other books (free eBook downloads): http://www.oregonstatehospital... [oregonstatehospital.net]

Patent you should read, 3,951,134 "Apparatus and method for remotely monitoring and altering brain waves": http://www.oregonstatehospital... [oregonstatehospital.net]

Re:That IS good news! (1)

strstr (539330) | about 7 months ago | (#46458843)

this is important here. the word "that" was supposed to be "they"

" because that cannot make it look like the hack came directly from you."

" because they cannot make it look like the hack came directly from you."

Re:That IS good news! (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 7 months ago | (#46462431)

Range is no limitation for lasers and EMF my friend. For example, do the suns suddenly become unviewable at some distance? No? Then neither do your neurons or our radar systems to your brains.

Four words: signal-to-noise ratio. You got suckered like Tom Clancy with the life detector in Rainbow Six.

Re:That IS good news! (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 7 months ago | (#46451211)

They just transfer the info to England and viola, They're no longer retaining it.

The problem with government agencies that work in secret is that they can make any justification they want, for any activity they want and there's no way anyone will know.
It currently appears that the NSA is operating under the belief that:
A. Their mission is righteous. They are the good guys.
B. The law and constitution are another obstacle, like any other piece of hardware or software they have to deal with. As with all obstacles they probe them for weakness and exploit those weaknesses in as much secret as possible.
C. They are not looking forward... who will the next director of the agency? President? Congress? They are not considering what will happen when the powers they have given themselves are under the control of a different generation.

courts say lots of things (1)

turkeydance (1266624) | about 7 months ago | (#46450721)

we're the NSA. we know everything.

Re:courts say lots of things (1)

zlives (2009072) | about 7 months ago | (#46455397)

oh come on... NSA is not omnipotent. Its not like they know who the terrorists are, where they are and what they are doing or going to do... but yeah other than that they know everything else.

convenient (1)

shentino (1139071) | about 7 months ago | (#46450745)

If the government destroyed it preemptively they'd be guilty of spoliation.

This way instead they get immunity to discovery and subpoenas.

mhm... (1)

BronsCon (927697) | about 7 months ago | (#46450755)

Right, like that'll stop them.

Obligatory cynicism (4, Interesting)

stoploss (2842505) | about 7 months ago | (#46450765)

Obligatory cynicism: I believe the only reason this ruling happened is the NSA found a way to technically comply with the ruling while still retaining the data. My guess is they will have a third party store it for them.

Hooray: keep the data, avoid the lawsuits, and keep raping our freedoms! A trifecta for America!

Re:Obligatory cynicism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46451027)

Who knows, perhaps they conquer a way to create reports about the data of some sort, with a pen mightier than a sword. It might require some workforce to do it before the five years are up, but then the question is, would the US citizens want their counter intelligence and other security activities to be so ineffective that it takes more than five years to identify a set of culprits?

Re:Obligatory cynicism (4, Interesting)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 7 months ago | (#46451517)

Want to be cynical? Try this: the act of deleting the data will also delete the evidence that would be used to establish a citizen's grounds for suing the NSA over its illegal data retention. Without the ability to demonstrate that they were affected, no one will have the grounds for a lawsuit.

Re:Obligatory cynicism (1)

wiredog (43288) | about 7 months ago | (#46453335)

the act of deleting the data will also delete the evidence that would be used to establish a citizen's grounds for suing the NSA over its illegal data retention.
That's what the NSA said when they asked for permission to hold the data for more than 5 years.

Re:Obligatory cynicism (1)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 7 months ago | (#46456971)

Yup, of that I am aware (though I'm glad you brought it up anyway, since it's worth restating). I never said my cynicism was directed at the NSA in this case. ;)

Re:Obligatory cynicism (1)

Vitriol+Angst (458300) | about 7 months ago | (#46452271)

Yeah, that's what I figured as well.

Can't you just feel the respect from these spooks?

What the court says doesn't matter (4, Insightful)

MindPrison (864299) | about 7 months ago | (#46450835)

Because ultimately - the government will have the last say.

It's any governing powers wet dream to be able to know everything about its people, that way - they can know what buttons to press, what feelings to arouse, people to use and abuse - because, lets face it - if YOU...the normal guy on the streets should get some of your little secrets exposed, they have you locked in...and you would NEVER revolt, because you STILL count your little secrets and "safe" life not worth sacrificing as your only reward for sticking it to the man...would be being hung out to dry and your life destroyed.

Well, how is that different from war? War have casualties too, but there is no honor in death. If you're still alive to fix things, there is hope - and without hope, we're truly doomed.

What if you have no secrets? I asked a few people if they would have a problem with the gov. storing everything about them, what they say over the phone, what they write, what they purchase - and maybe even their little secrets at home. The answer I got from most of them, was: I don't have anything to hide, I'm so boring, let them watch, let them know.

Say, I'm going to let you in on a little secret of mine, I know a lot about people too (use your imagination here, because you won't get some long explanation on that, call it LIFE experiences if you wish). In fact, I know so much about people...that I understand the lure of power, but I've chosen not to use it at all, but alas...most people would use it in a heartbeat, why? Because I've seen that too, again and again - as I stood by and let them abuse me with the knowledge they had, it could be simple things like buying new hardware for the company to better support the workers (which is BAD if you go against the company policy), but very good for overall efficiency etc. I've seen countless people abuse power - because they want SO badly to RISE in their ranks, make their small insignificant lives a little better for them and their families, at the cost of others...not in their family.

Have you ever seen the movie a Bugs Life? Not far away from how the governing elite controls the small everyday working ant...and like it that way, because lets face it, wouldn't you if you where given that option? To never have to worry about anything...ever again? To have endless purchasing powers? To always be right - even though you're completely wrong?

The moral of the above is, if you GIVE them this kind of power, they will take it - and you will only have yourself to blame.

Re:What the court says doesn't matter (1)

gIobaljustin (3526197) | about 7 months ago | (#46454027)

I don't have anything to hide, I'm so boring, let them watch, let them know.

What these fools don't realize is that they're not the ones who get to decide if they're doing anything wrong; the government does that, and if it's corrupt and you did something it didn't like, you're screwed. The notion of the government being made up of perfect angels who would never harm a fly or make a mistake is ridiculous, and even minimal knowledge of government abuses of power throughout history shows that. The sheer amount of stupidity of trusting the current government and all future governments to not abuse their powers is staggering.

Re:What the court says doesn't matter (1)

MindPrison (864299) | about 7 months ago | (#46456703)

What these fools don't realize is that they're not the ones who get to decide if they're doing anything wrong...

Indeed, that's the sad AND scary part. We're becoming so complacent in our "safe" environment, and so afraid to upset anyone that we'll gladly bite the stick, and go back to our little holes (which will soon enough become smaller and smaller). Whenever I'm hired in as a guest speaker at the schools, I try to schedule in a heart-to-heart talk with the kids and youths about this, and try not to become too wacky for them. Kids are quite intelligent, so most of them pick up the idea once it's fully understood.

And you know...the problem isn't the kids, it's what we teach them, or...don't teach them.

So the NSA are asking the courts now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46450999)

They didn't ask the courts when they technically committed acts of war against friendly nations so why do we think they'll pay any attention to their ruling now?

NSA is above these courts. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46451493)

One thing that is clear about you Yanks, and that is how badly you understand your own systems. By definition, by purpose, and by agreement between the three independent branches of the US system of governance, intelligence operations like the NSA are above the court system.

Just as those that work with the NSA, either by choice or through coercion, may lie about every aspect of their co-operation to both citizens and politicians, without breaking any law, the charade of 'court rulings' like these is to give a known false reassurance to the electorate, and lower level politicians.

So who controls the NSA and the rest of the US intelligence operations? STAR CHAMBERS. These entities, universally found in the major nations of the West, comprise of powerful individuals from every section of society- business, church, military, law, media, and, of course, senior politicians, including the President. The 'star chambers' replace the traditional rule by 'King' and his council of 'advisers. The excuse for the existence of 'star chambers' is the need for consistency of rule, and mid to long term planning- concepts in diametric opposition to the faux democratic systems of the West that need to maintain the pretence that the people can vote into power radically different regimes with radically different agendas every 4-5 years.

Because the membership of the star chamber that oversees the NSA is fully representative of all the potentially interested elites, no powerful external action is witnessed against NSA abuses. How could there be. Anyone with the power to object to NSA crimes against the populace has already agreed to support such crimes.

The star chamber system works perfectly because if you become significant enough to object to such a thing, you will find you have already been made a participating member of the system. Organisations like 'Skull and Bones', and those that recruit younger members at elite universities, exist as GROOMING GROUNDS for the real thing, training aspirational elites abut how true power is maintained and manipulated. Everyone that 'matters' feel they already get a say on how the NSA behaves, and that 'say' has nothing to do with anything you betas ever get to hear.

Let's call this for what it is (1)

CuteSteveJobs (1343851) | about 7 months ago | (#46451497)

A bullshit excuse by the NSA to keep their ill-gotten gains

Does that really matter? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46452217)

That's a bit like telling a career criminal that he should better not do a petty crime. Like telling a murderer that it's not ok to steal a car to drive to his victim.

Real National Security is defined by the founders! (1)

3seas (184403) | about 7 months ago | (#46452445)

From the Declaration of Independence"... But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security...."

The Hijacked US Government when they say "national security" its really their security just as the media uses terms such as "the US", Israel", Iraq" etc... when what they are really referring to is not the people but the governments hiding being the insinuation of the people.

The large majority of the people on this planet are getting fed up with the few liars, cheats and warmongers draining from them the benefits the people themselves have been generating. As anyone who has ever worked in team knows, you can in teamwork generate more benefits than the team members need. And it takes great drain and destructive force to hide this fact so to prop up those deceiving the people of this planet.

What has happened here falls in line with hiding the facts of who those deceiving are.

Maybe they should keep the metadata (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 7 months ago | (#46452955)

Maybe they should keep the metadata about the metadata they've been collecting? Meta-metadata or is that more like an infinite loop, metadata about metadata is also metadata?

Abject stupidity (1)

DaMattster (977781) | about 7 months ago | (#46453657)

Well, there goes any citizen's chance at recrimination against the government. The NSA got it's wet dream, get out of jail free card and ordered by, none other than, the legal system itself! Maybe, this data should have been ordered to be removed from the control of the NSA and put into private hands for storage.

Already Reveresed (1)

gregulator (756993) | about 7 months ago | (#46454915)

http://www.theverge.com/2014/3... [theverge.com]

The restraining order was issued Monday, just days after the FISA court blocked the government's request to continue holding onto call records that were relevant to ongoing litigation. With its quick action, the California district court has put a hold on that ruling for now, allowing relevant evidence to be preserved.

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