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The Executive Order That Led To Mass Spying, As Told By NSA Alumni

samzenpus posted about three weeks ago | from the I-see-you dept.

United States 180

An anonymous reader writes with this Ars piece about the executive order that is the legal basis for the U.S. government's mass spying on citizens. One thing sits at the heart of what many consider a surveillance state within the US today. The problem does not begin with political systems that discourage transparency or technologies that can intercept everyday communications without notice. Like everything else in Washington, there's a legal basis for what many believe is extreme government overreach—in this case, it's Executive Order 12333, issued in 1981. “12333 is used to target foreigners abroad, and collection happens outside the US," whistleblower John Tye, a former State Department official, told Ars recently. "My complaint is not that they’re using it to target Americans, my complaint is that the volume of incidental collection on US persons is unconstitutional.” The document, known in government circles as "twelve triple three," gives incredible leeway to intelligence agencies sweeping up vast quantities of Americans' data. That data ranges from e-mail content to Facebook messages, from Skype chats to practically anything that passes over the Internet on an incidental basis. In other words, EO 12333 protects the tangential collection of Americans' data even when Americans aren't specifically targeted—otherwise it would be forbidden under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) of 1978.

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Need a big leak (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780397)

I would like a big leak to happen. Like, 100 million Facebook accounts with private conversations and photos (deleted or not). Can someone make that happen? I think that would be a good starting point for further discussions.

Re:Need a big leak (3, Insightful)

master5o1 (1068594) | about three weeks ago | (#47780439)

If it's just Facebook, then it'll be claimed as a Facebook security breach and not anything related to NSA.

You would want some sort of release of data that collates Facebook accounts to traffic offenses and something to do with cellphone data.

Re:Need a big leak (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780963)

I bet you could get that info from a facebook data breach as well.

How many Snowdens you really need ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782845)

If not for Snowden those of us who know what happened dare not even _think_ about what we know, and now you need a leak from 100 million fb?

Now many of you guys really prepare to follow Snowden ?

1981 (5, Funny)

Travis Mansbridge (830557) | about three weeks ago | (#47780403)

Three years early!

Re:1981 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781455)

Well, they had to have everything ready for 1984, didn't they?

Reagan is alive! (5, Insightful)

markringen (1501853) | about three weeks ago | (#47780415)

that man is responsible for every disaster on the globe since he ever was president..

Re:Reagan is alive! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780481)

Thanks Obama!

Re:Reagan is alive! (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about three weeks ago | (#47782265)

Thanks Obama!

Exactly! Thanks for carrying on with the same bullshit.

Different era (4, Insightful)

mi (197448) | about three weeks ago | (#47780575)

That data ranges from e-mail content to Facebook messages, from Skype chats to practically anything that passes over the Internet on an incidental basis.

None of those things existed, when the order was signed, though. And if none of the subsequent Presidents — including the current "tech-savvy" wonder — have abolished it since then (when the explosive use of computers made it truly dangerous), then is Reagan really to blame?

Re:Different era (5, Informative)

AF_Cheddar_Head (1186601) | about three weeks ago | (#47780633)

Yes, Yes he is.

Union breaker
Deficit balloons
Trickle Down
Sandinistas
Iran-Contra
Ollie North
Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's

You fucking got me started

Re:Different era (5, Insightful)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47780675)

He also ramped up the war on drugs, something that so many freedom-hating scumbags in our government have done. So he wasn't a good president, and he definitely didn't want "small government."

But what does that have to do with him being to blame for this specific issue?

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781327)

Mr. Feces's Edge, tear down this president!

Re:Different era (1)

sociocapitalist (2471722) | about three weeks ago | (#47782513)

He also ramped up the war on drugs, something that so many freedom-hating scumbags in our government have done. So he wasn't a good president, and he definitely didn't want "small government."

But what does that have to do with him being to blame for this specific issue?

Indeed it appears that Jimmy Carter was president when this order was signed in December of 1981.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L... [wikipedia.org]

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783469)

Just checking, you do know that December comes after January?

Re:Different era (1)

Xaedalus (1192463) | about three weeks ago | (#47784711)

replying to undo mod. Argh.

Re:Different era (2)

sociocapitalist (2471722) | about three weeks ago | (#47782517)

He also ramped up the war on drugs, something that so many freedom-hating scumbags in our government have done. So he wasn't a good president, and he definitely didn't want "small government."

But what does that have to do with him being to blame for this specific issue?

Whoops, no it wasn't Carter...it was Reagan:
On December 4, 1981 President Ronald Reagan signed Executive Order 12333, an Executive Order intended to extend powers and responsibilities of US intelligence agencies and direct the leaders of U.S. federal agencies to co-operate fully with CIA requests for information.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E... [wikipedia.org]

So yes he is to blame for this specific issue.

Re:Different era (3, Interesting)

mi (197448) | about three weeks ago | (#47780741)

Yes, Yes he is.

Because?..

Union breaker .... You fucking got me started

I wish, you had anything on-topic to offer, when you get "started"... The topic, in this case, being the abuse of the Executive Order 12333 [wikipedia.org] by the intelligence community decades after the order was signed.

Re:Different era (2)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781539)

This started long before this order every happened.

THE FBI, CIA, a host of known and (still) unknown agencies. About 100 years ago, check your history on the "war on communism" civil rights leaders and just about anyone who spoke out against their political leaders or people that were rich and influential were being target. Howard Hughes, MLK Jr, John Kennedy (a little irony in a president being considered a communist who was battling communists) I could keep going with the list of famous people let alone everyday Jane's/Johns.

Really this all started back sometime in the 1920-30's and it only snowballed from there. And that spying was illegal but also kept secretive for some-time until people began to suspect they were purposely being targeted then it became public.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783483)

Wow. The BOI was create just over 100 years ago, the FBI came out of that about 80 years ago. The OSS was formed during WWII and the CIA only came around after that. Amazing what happens when you check your history. But yeah, those 'other agencies' shhh. ;)

Re:Different era (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780767)

Union breaker - Good. Unions are a disease on this country. We seem to be doing pretty good with out them.
Deficit balloons - There's nothing wrong with deficit spending as long as it's controlled. The world wants our bonds.
Trickle down - Taking less money from the people that need it the most. The ones who actually create jobs and economic growth.
Sandinistas - As I understand it. Reagan had a policy of killing Sandinistas. That's a good thing since they were communists.
Iran-Contra - Getting weapons to the Contras so they can kill communist Sandinistas. Good.
Ollie North - Marine helping to get weapons to Contras so they can kill communists. Good.
Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's - Is there any actual evidence of this happening?

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780979)

Union breaker - Good. Unions are a disease on this country. We seem to be doing pretty good with out them.

Sure if you're the ultra wealthy.

Re:Different era (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781045)

Try again, chief. Unions are why the auto makers needed a bailout, why you can't get rid of crappy state and local employees, and why our kids can't get a good education in public schools.

Re:Different era (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781839)

Don't forget, unions also caused global warming. Also don't forget that flagrant mis-management that also lead to them needing a bailout, I would say the problems with GM had very little to do with unions actually, they are just an easy scapegoat.

Re:Different era (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about three weeks ago | (#47782145)

Yeah, it had nothing to do with the massive miss management for years. They spent more time trying to legislate out foreign makers, rather than trying to make cars people wanted. But that has nothing to do with their decline.

Re:Different era (1)

sasquatch989 (2663479) | about three weeks ago | (#47781743)

I have to work with unions (telecom). The sooner they die off the better

Re:Different era (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782627)

I don't have a union.

In the last 2 years, I've had approximately 40 hours worth of wages stolen from me by my employer, who refuses to pay them back.

My employer refuses to pay his staff for our public holidays, even though the contract and law says he must.

When I was working full time for him, he decided he didn't want to pay me overtime.

He also decided I shouldn't be taking my meal breaks, or my ten minute breaks, even though that's illegal. Gave me warnings when I did.

He then felt that I should be working for free for at least four hours a day.

Then he fired me because I basically felt apart due to exhaustion.

If I had a union none of that would have happened, and he would be facing criminal charges for the wages theft and civil charges for the lack of breaks, mandatory unpaid overtime, and so forth.

As it stands, if I do anything about it by myself, I will find myself unemployable after he puts the bad word out on me, so don't you put that "unions are evil" shit out there without seeing how the world is when they're not around.

Because in an employer-controlled world, laws don't matter.

Re: Different era (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783233)

Maybe you could have looked for another job??

Re:Different era (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47787897)

Sigh.. I know you are trolling but seriously, if any of that was true and illegal, all you would have to do is go see an employment lawyer and it wouldn't happen much longer.

In the last 2 years, I've had approximately 40 hours worth of wages stolen from me by my employer, who refuses to pay them back.

You see, laws were used against Walmart [wsj.com] when employees were classified in ways to avoid paying overtime when the law said they deserved it and managers were changing employee time sheets [latimes.com] in order to avoid paying overtime and deducting for lunch breaks even though they didn't get them.

My employer refuses to pay his staff for our public holidays, even though the contract and law says he must.

If it is the law, see above, If it is a contract, see above. There are remedies available without necessitating a Union. If you actually have a case, most laws provide that your legal fees be covered as part of the judgement or settlement.

If I had a union none of that would have happened, and he would be facing criminal charges for the wages theft and civil charges for the lack of breaks, mandatory unpaid overtime, and so forth.

Actually, you would likely be in the same boat you are in right now. Either with a fictitious claim or not pursuing any of it until its way too late like you appear to have done already. You not speaking up, you not looking for the right answers is the reason he got away with it. A union is not likely to change that.

As it stands, if I do anything about it by myself, I will find myself unemployable after he puts the bad word out on me, so don't you put that "unions are evil" shit out there without seeing how the world is when they're not around.

And your lawyer simply has someone he does business with check for an employment reference and when it comes back negative, your old employer pays your wages while you look for a new job and cannot find one.

This isn't something new.. It's happened to lots of people and they did something about it. They did it with and without a union.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47784415)

Unions are a disease to the workers. What good is $30 per hour for pushing a mop if the union dues are $2,000 a month?

Re:Different era (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47784857)

Or the people in the planes who where left to chance when all the flight controllers illegally walked out of the air traffic control towers to start a strike.

How this gets forgotten is beyond me. Planes needing to land, needing to know where other planes were so not to hit them were left in the dark.

Re:Different era (3)

Le Marteau (206396) | about three weeks ago | (#47781239)

> Ollie North - Marine helping to get weapons to Contras so they can kill communists. Good.

Congress said "don't do it". North ignored the will of congress, which represents the people. And in doing so, therefore ignored the will of the people. He ignored my representative, therefore, he ignored ME by proxy. I didn't take kindly to such things then, and I don't take kindly when Obama does it now.

The man was no patriot. He was an outlaw. Fuck Oliver North.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781725)

> Ollie North - Marine helping to get weapons to Contras so they can kill communists. Good.

Congress said "don't do it". North ignored the will of congress, which represents the people. And in doing so, therefore ignored the will of the people. He ignored my representative, therefore, he ignored ME by proxy. I didn't take kindly to such things then, and I don't take kindly when Obama does it now.

The man was no patriot. He was an outlaw. Fuck Oliver North.

So, umm, what's your take on Obama openly ignoring the law with respect to such things as Obamacare deadlines, the bombing of Libya, the destruction of Lois Lerner's emails, and immigration?

Why do I think it's not going to be, "Fuck Barack Obama"?

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781851)

Because you attribute to Obama things to which he has not done on top of Obamacare being quite legal and being ruled so in a court of law. Immigration? He sure has tried, and multiple times but he has a congress filled with senators with a stated out loud goal of trying to make him fail as a president. It's no wonder he's taken several missteps, he keeps trying to appease people that are openly hostile to him.

Re:Different era (1)

Le Marteau (206396) | about three weeks ago | (#47782703)

> So, umm, what's your take on Obama openly ignoring the law...Why do I think it's not going to be, "Fuck Barack Obama"?

Why do I think you are a fucking retard who did not even bother to completely read what I said.

I said :

> He ignored my representative, therefore, he ignored ME by proxy. I didn't take kindly to such things then, and I don't take kindly when Obama does it now.

Re: Different era (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781435)

Fuck you. You seriously believe this "job creator" myth? And all that other crap?

The only thing keeping Ronald Reagan from being the worst president in US history is W.

Re: Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781649)

And ...
Nixon
Grant
Buchanan
Jackson
Adams?

Re: Different era (1)

budgenator (254554) | about three weeks ago | (#47785331)

Fuck you. You seriously believe this "job creator" myth? And all that other crap?

The only thing keeping Ronald Reagan from being the worst president in US history is W.

During Jimmy Carter's last year in office (1980), inflation averaged 12.5%, compared with 4.4% during Reagan's last year in office (1988).[122] During Reagan's administration, the unemployment rate declined from 7.5% to 5.4%, with the rate reaching highs of 10.8% in 1982 and 10.4% in 1983, averaging 7.5% over the eight years, and GDP growth average 7.9% with a high of 12.2% growth in 1982.[123][124]Ronald Reagan [wikipedia.org]

I guess you're too young to remember what's like living with double digit inflation, with double digit unemployment during the worst recession since the great depression, becase that's what he inhereted from Carter. Ending the Cold War by enacting strategies that collapsed the Soviet Union, reunified Germany and liberated eastern Euorpe from Soviet puppet states was no mean feat either.

I consider George H, one of the worst presidents because all he had to do is keep on doing what they were doing when he was VP, and he didn't.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781511)

Propagandist shill identified!

Re:Different era (1)

Sciath (3433615) | about three weeks ago | (#47789429)

Youre joking, yes? Doing pretty well without them? (Unions) What country do you actually live in? China? Nearly ANY news source reports the American middle class has significantly shrunk. The minimum wage (had it kept pace with inflation) would now be around $12. Fewer people (at least until "Obama Care) had or have employer sponsored health insurance. More people than ever are seeking medical services from "free clinics" (low income). Workforces are significantly reduced. "Trickle Down"? Taking less money from "job creators"? Who are they? Oh, wait, they MAY be creating sweatshop jobs overseas but certainly not any sustainable jobs to any considerable degree in the U.S. Killing people just because of their government's political structure? Youre a Neanderthal if you really believe that. There is no pure capitalist government in the world. So why dont you go shoot a few Americans because there are communist/socialist policies in place in a America. Giving weapons to the contras. Again, whether or not one agrees, it was factually illegal at the time to do so. So what? Presidents are above the law? They may think they are. But wishing and being are two different things. You want to encourage lawlessness? Miscreants like you are part of the moral plague upon the planet.

The Elepahnt (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | about three weeks ago | (#47780879)

Yes, Yes he is....

Wow, if you did't like that list, you must REALLY despise Obama. He's given arms all over the map, and under Obama unions have faced massive reductions all over.

Re:The Elepahnt (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782965)

You are correct; Obama has been a _huge_ disapointment... And the saddest bit of all is that he's still the least worse of the bunch.

Re:Different era (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780895)

Union breaker
Look into the union that was broken. I knew a guy who was on the lines. His reaction? We deserved it. Basically they overreached on what they did for what they were asking for. Regan basically saw that air travel had ground to a halt. He took care of it. Any other president probably would have done something similar.

Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's
do you have proof of that? and I do not mean 'internet truth' but real facts.

The rest were enabled by a democrat congress. Being as they control the budget and let oliver north go.

You may 'hate' him because he is not on your 'team' but I give him one thing. He was a effective president. Unlike the last 4 who were more concerned about the polls than the public. I felt he actually gave a damn about us. Where as the last 4 jackasses seem more concerned about their party.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782593)

do you have proof of that? and I do not mean 'internet truth' but real facts.

You understand that facts are facts, regardless of source?

I suspect what you meant was "internet rumours" rather than "internet truth."

Re:Different era (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47787097)

Facts are facts which is why i took his post as a friendly version of citation needed.

But rumors and truth- i think he was being ironic with that because so many internet truths turn out to be unsubstantiated rumors often completely false too.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780907)

Union breaker - that was a good thing! Unions behave like mobsters! Most people are forced to pay these criminals (in Calif., Mass. etc.).
Deficit balloons - that did get the economy going. Unfortunately the government was unable to cut spending (surprise). It is better to do it this way rather than print endless amount of money (like they do now).
Trickle Down - if you earn the money, its yours. Right now the feds are handing free money to the Wall street folks and the rest of us will pay all that through increased inflation.
Sandinistas - always a good idea to take down communists (says someone who's been living right next Soviet Union for a long time)!
Iran-Contra - well, dealing with Iran in any way is always a bad idea. They should be isolated from the rest of the world permanently (just like North Korea).
Ollie North - see above.
Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's - BS: 1) presidents decision making is based on input from lot of staff members, 2) he was in good shape until the end of his presidency. What we have right now in the office is a total clown. He is run by wall street & unions - anyone left in the middle will loose.

Ronald Reagan was the best president US has ever had!

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780981)

Ronald Reagan was the best president US has ever had!

That's like lining up murderers, pointing to one guy, and saying that that guy's the best one in the group. It means nothing, because they're all terrible. Ronald Reagan, who increased focus on the freedom-violating war on drugs (along with so many other presidents), was still a freedom-hating scumbag.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783947)

he was in good shape until the end of his presidency. What we have right now in the office is a total clown. He is run by wall street & unions - anyone left in the middle will loose.

Ronald Reagan was the best president US has ever had!

Shouldn't that be "anyone left in the middle will tight?"
Reagan was a nice guy, but he was still an idiot. His wife doubly so.

Re:Different era (1)

Nyder (754090) | about three weeks ago | (#47781077)

Yes, Yes he is.

Union breaker
Deficit balloons
Trickle Down
Sandinistas
Iran-Contra
Ollie North
Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's

You fucking got me started

Reagan was a puppet, Bush ran the country.

Re:Different era (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about three weeks ago | (#47781493)

Yes, Yes he is.

Union breaker
Deficit balloons
Trickle Down
Sandinistas
Iran-Contra
Ollie North
Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's

You fucking got me started

Obama was a constitutional law professor for fucks sake.
Regan was an actor.

So who exactly should you be more angry with again?

Re:Different era (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about three weeks ago | (#47781903)

Besides, the father of "trickle-down", Art Laffer, was a dyed-in-the-wool Keynesian economist (and still is). Which means that he was a card-carrying member of the same group of nutjobs who are still advising the Fed (and the Feds) on economics.

Didn't work then. Doesn't work now. (Not just trickle-down, I mean Keynesian interventionist economics.)

I just get a laugh about how today's Liberals think the current administration's economics are going to save us all, when in reality it's all the same shit, different day.

Re:Different era (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about three weeks ago | (#47783067)

And that's related to anything I said how?

Clowns to left of me. Jokers to the right.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783971)

And that's related to anything I said how?

Clowns to left of me. Jokers to the right.

"Trickle down".
Pay attention.

Re:Different era (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about three weeks ago | (#47785233)

It seems pretty obvious to me.

You were responding to someone who derided "trickle-down". The problem being that the same school of thought that was responsible for "trickle-down" is still advising the President and the Fed.

You mentioned that Obama was a "constitutional scholar", and implied we should be more angry over that than over some actor. My point was that we should be at least as leery of Obama's economics as Reagan's. (And in fact, the Keynesian economics is not working any better now than it did then.)

Re:Different era (1)

budgenator (254554) | about three weeks ago | (#47785843)

Keynesian economics is more about controlling money's value through plain old supply and demand i.e. Government can cause inflation by spending at a deficit, reducing taxes and pumping money into the economy. The country was in a depression caused by deflation in the 1930's, so FDR's spending at deficts to fund Public works worked. The inverse would be that Government can cause deflation by increasing taxes, reducing spending and paying down the debt with inflated money. During the Carter Administration, they tried to fix an inflationary recession by miss-applying Keynesian economics and increased defict spending with disasterous results.

Currently with inflation at 1.5 - 2, the budget should be balanced and taxes moderate.

Re:Different era (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about three weeks ago | (#47786043)

Keynesian economics is more about controlling money's value through plain old supply and demand i.e. Government can cause inflation by spending at a deficit, reducing taxes and pumping money into the economy. The country was in a depression caused by deflation in the 1930's, so FDR's spending at deficts to fund Public works worked. The inverse would be that Government can cause deflation by increasing taxes, reducing spending and paying down the debt with inflated money. During the Carter Administration, they tried to fix an inflationary recession by miss-applying Keynesian economics and increased defict spending with disasterous results.

Currently with inflation at 1.5 - 2, the budget should be balanced and taxes moderate.

You're trying to teach your mistaken notions about economics to the wrong person.

Keynesian economics is largely about government interventionism. This is primarily what separates it from more objective macroeconomic theory.

And even mainstream economists today reject the idea that FDR brought the country out of the depression. On the contrary... many say he prolonged it for as much as 10 unnecessary years. His own Treasury secretary thought he was crazy.

Re:Different era (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about three weeks ago | (#47790111)

Currently with inflation at 1.5 - 2, the budget should be balanced and taxes moderate.

If you really believe inflation has been at 1.5-2%, you're either a complete loon, or you haven't tried to buy a house lately, or you've totally swallowed the government Kool-Aid.

OR, more likely, you've just been letting the wife buy the groceries and not listen to her complaints about the prices.

For fuck's sake, man, if you knew how CPI was calculated you'd never listen to that BS.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783933)

Obama was a constitutional law professor for fucks sake.
Regan was an actor.

So who exactly should you be more angry with again?

Well, an untenured adjust professor.

So one fakes it and everyone knows he's acting, the other fakes it and actually tries to play it off like the real deal.

Re:Different era (2, Insightful)

khallow (566160) | about three weeks ago | (#47781551)

Union breaker

Amazing how putting this on the front of your list just discredited your entire post instantly. Public labor unions are a particularly nasty parasite. The union in question, the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Union got overly greedy and demonstrated an epic level of hubris.

The results were not so good. Not only did they get burned permanently (the strikers weren't only fired, but banned permanently from employment with the Federal government), but they also set back all labor unions by swinging public opinion massively against labor unions in general.

Re:Different era (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about three weeks ago | (#47782309)

Fuck Reagan! He's dead, Jim... We've had 30 years to turn that shit around. Who the hell is to blame for that miserable failure, huh? Are you all going to keep on blaming the the people you all vote for every time you vote for some guy just like him? I won't say you deserve this, but you sure did ask for it. If you want to look at who to blame, you'd better look in the opposite direction. Dig?

Re:Different era (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783065)

Fuck Reagan! He's dead, Jim... We've had 30 years to turn that shit around. Who the hell is to blame for that miserable failure, huh? Are you all going to keep on blaming the the people you all vote for every time you vote for some guy just like him? I won't say you deserve this, but you sure did ask for it. If you want to look at who to blame, you'd better look in the opposite direction. Dig?

We've had 30 years to turn it around, but Reagan has been the deity of the Republican party for those 30 years. The Republicans kept pushing the failed Reagan policies because they were Reagan policies. Every radical thing they did was proposed in Reagan's name. It took GWB's massive fuckups to tarnish the godhood of Reagan and Reagan's policies.

Obama, however, has no one to blame but himself.

Re:Different era (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about three weeks ago | (#47785087)

Just like everybody here, you ignore who is voting for all this corruption. You're supposed to shock the monkey when it does wrong, not reward it.

Re:Different era (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | about three weeks ago | (#47784425)

Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's

Quite a fucking stretch on that one, buddy. Just shows how desperate you are to blame everything on him.

Re:Different era (1)

budgenator (254554) | about three weeks ago | (#47784609)

Yes, Yes he is.

Union breaker
Deficit balloons
Trickle Down
Sandinistas
Iran-Contra
Ollie North
Nancy making decisions when he gets Alzheimer's

You fucking got me started

Reagan was the only President that I know of that was president of a Union, President of the Screen Actors Guild specificaly

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47785863)

While we're off-topic talking about all of Saint Reagan's terrible effects on our country, don't forget his administration's handling of AIDS.

Re:Different era (1)

Sciath (3433615) | about three weeks ago | (#47789373)

Let not forget that Ronnie and Nancy also consulted astrologers and "spiritualists" (or the séance and palm reading kind) before making many important decisions.

Re:Different era (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781633)

And the reason why is bad now was because the universities that created the internet and the telcos took the easy way out: use the existing POTS system.

Not the NSA. This is more of a failure of the Govt not changing laws to keep up with the times, nor reevaluating them today.

Re:Reagan is alive! (3)

SpockLogic (1256972) | about three weeks ago | (#47780625)

that man is responsible for every disaster on the globe since he ever was president..

No, no, the right will clam that their beloved President Alzheimer was non compos mentis when he signed 12333 and cannot be held responsible for fucking over the population.

Re:Reagan is alive! (4, Interesting)

Beck_Neard (3612467) | about three weeks ago | (#47780665)

Actually that's kind of the point, to some degree. It's now clear he was suffering from symptoms of dementia throughout his entire term, and they became especially pronounced near the end. His suggestibility and deteriorating mental health made him easy prey for those who wanted laws changed in their favor.

Re:Reagan is alive! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783479)

Posting anon to not cancel spent mod points....

Would this not invalidate that law?

Re:Reagan is alive! (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47787317)

Nope. Because it is not law. It is how agencies view or interpret an existing law that has some ambiguity to it.

Other presidents have ammended the executive order so in a sense, you could say that even if it was invalidated for reasons like that, those presidents effectivly reinstated it. Now if it is ever found to violate the law or be unconstitutional by a court, it would be invalid.

Re:Reagan is alive! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780851)

He was responsible for bringing the Bush Crime Family into power on a national scale by appointing one of their Dons as Assistant President. Raygun showed his true hatred of this country with that crap. Instead of putting every member of that crime syndicate in prison, he rewarded them which ruined this country. There is no hope for us now.

Re:Reagan is alive! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781099)

"one of their Dons"

lol

Re:Reagan is alive! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47787145)

"Assistant President"
Loller

Re:Reagan is alive! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781223)

Leave President Ray Gun aloooooone!

MK Ultra will do that to ya (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782773)

MK Ultra is a hellova drug

Inevitable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783239)

On the contrary, mass spying was inevitable given the standard trajectory of government, which is expansion. Given enough time, the size of government would reach the point where mass spying wasn't just feasible, but necessary for the business of government. Put another way, there was no way to have a government that large (in terms of both wealth and power over the people) without getting into the business of mass spying.

Re:Reagan is alive! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47789923)

that man is responsible for every disaster on the globe since he ever was president..

I second this

Leslie from Canada

Alumni? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780451)

You've misspelled illuminati.

Re:Alumni? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781289)

And alumnus.

Re:Alumni? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781531)

Both of what AC refers to are plural. Your suggestion of a singular is meaningless.

FISA fraud (1)

jodido (1052890) | about three weeks ago | (#47780511)

This shows what a scam FISA is. In case there's anyone left who still has any illusions.

Re:FISA fraud (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780551)

How so?

Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780523)

President and agencies still swear to uphold the Constitution and have no business violating it, executive orders or not.
Any orders ought to be followed to the extent the Constitution allows, not beyond, and those going beyond deserve
to be punished. That should include Presidents, though such sanctions are pretty broken.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780581)

The POTUS is punished by Congress through impeachment. Nothing is really broken. Convince your fellow voters to vote for candidates willing to impeach the President and you'll get your results. What parts of the order do you think actually violate the Constitution?

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780651)

The parts where they take the order to mean they can collect 'metadata' on innocent citizens without a warrant. Even if it explicitly said that, it would be unconstitutional.

You should not *have* to impeach anyone to get government scumbags to follow the constitution.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780833)

Yes you should have to impeach someone to get them to follow the Constitution. That is what is outlined in the Constitution. Metadata isn't considered to be a part of your "effects" since it is third party information so it has nothing to do with the constitution. Collection of third party information without a warrant has been around since forever. The cops can go ask your neighbors about you. The neighbor can choose whether or not to talk to them.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (2, Insightful)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47780913)

Yes you should have to impeach someone to get them to follow the Constitution.

They swear to follow the constitution, so they should do that of their own volition.

Metadata isn't considered to be a part of your "effects" since it is third party information so it has nothing to do with the constitution. Collection of third party information without a warrant has been around since forever.

Bull-fucking-shit, government bootlicker. The government has absolutely no constitutional authority to conduct such surveillance on citizens without a warrant. If this sort of surveillance had been used against the founders, they would have taken steps to prevent the newly-formed government from doing the same thing, just like they did on a number of others issues that they faced at the time, and since the spirit of the constitution is what matters, that's really what's relevant.

The idea that the government can get around the constitution by letting corporations collect the data first and then getting the data from them is absolutely ludicrous. And a lot of this spying is just sapping up information as it travels to its destination. Anyone who says this is even remotely constitution is an authoritarian of the highest caliber and despises freedom.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (3, Insightful)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about three weeks ago | (#47780999)

If this sort of surveillance had been used against the founders, they would have taken steps to prevent the newly-formed government from doing the same thing, just like they did on a number of others issues that they faced at the time, and since the spirit of the constitution is what matters, that's really what's relevant.

So what did they do against the Alien and Sedition Acts?

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (2)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781033)

Violate their own constitution. But what they wrote was still there, regardless.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781031)

"They swear to follow the constitution, so they should do that of their own volition."
Wish in one hand and shit in the other and see which happens first.

The government does have the authority to conduct such surveillance. They've been doing it for a long time. If you don't like it, then don't store your data on someone else's servers and give them ownership over it. Data that you don't own isn't a part of your "effects". The government isn't getting around the Constitution since what they're taking isn't constitutionally protected.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781061)

The government does have the authority to conduct such surveillance. They've been doing it for a long time.

Unconstitutionally, at that.

If you don't like it, then don't store your data on someone else's servers and give them ownership over it.

No. How about if *you* don't like the fact that the government doesn't have such powers, *you* can move to North Korea.

Again, the *spirit* of the constitution is what matters. This is just a lazy end-run around the constitution that idiots like you like to pretend is valid. Anyone with a brain can see it for what it is, but sadly, people without brains--like yourself--aren't capable of understanding logic. The constitution is often not interpreted literally. The idea that the government can just get all your information from corporations and that's 100% constitutional is just absurd.

Look, I get it; you don't want to live in a country that's supposed to be "the land of the free and the home of the brave." You want to live in a police state hellhole. North Korea would be perfect for you.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781109)

The "spirit" of the Constitution doesn't mean jack shit legally. The government can't do an end-run around the Constitution if the Constitution doesn't even apply in the first place. I don't want to live in a "police state". I actually think the policies on third party information should be changed, but I don't pretend that the "spirit" of the Constitution is going to do it. If I were you I would be careful. The "spirit" of the Constitution can be turned around on its head and used for tyranny.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781121)

The "spirit" of the Constitution doesn't mean jack shit legally.

You're an idiot. The first amendment states, "Congress shall pass no law[...]" So, then, why can libel and slander be made illegal? Because the constitution is not interpreted literally.

The government can't do an end-run around the Constitution if the Constitution doesn't even apply in the first place.

It absolutely does apply. Again, the idea that the government can just get information from corporations that it couldn't other get in a constitutional way is absolutely absurd.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781179)

I'm not aware of Congress ever passing any laws against libel or slander.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (2)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781269)

The bill of rights was also applied to the states via the 14th amendment.

And if you really think the constitution is interpreted literally by the courts, you need to educate yourself.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (4, Informative)

penix1 (722987) | about three weeks ago | (#47781543)

Did you even read the executive order?

First of all, it has been modified many, many times since Ronald Reagen the last that I can find was in 2008. http://fas.org/irp/offdocs/eo/... [fas.org]

Second, and more to your points, sprinkled throughout the document are statements like, any intelligence collected concerning United States citizens must go through the FBI / Attorney General. This is so they can begin criminal investigations using the tools (read WARRANTS) to gain physical evidence of a crime. And the collection of that data, according to the order, is tangential to foreign intelligence gathering. As an example, here is 1.1(a)

(a) All means, consistent with applicable Federal law and this order, and with full consideration of the rights of United States persons, shall be used to obtain reliable intelligence information to protect the United States and its interests.

[Emphasis added]

This is 20(A):

(A) The Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation shall coordinate the clandestine collection of foreign intelligence collected through human sources or through human-enabled means and counterintelligence activities inside the United States;

[Emphasis added]

So sticking to the topic at hand, namely that this order authorizes warrantless surveillance of United States citizens, is patently false. That may be the way it is used but that goes counter to the executive order's language.

By the way, the "human enabled means" is the metadata you are talking about.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781605)

Did you even read the executive order?

This particular discussion is not about the executive order itself, but more about the collection of citizens' information without a warrant, which absolutely is unconstitutional.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781555)

And if I encrypt data, then I most cetainly retain control over it. The only thing that anyone else might own is the encrypted copy--not the key, and not the plaintext (if you start from the ciphertext, to get the plaintext requires interpretation of the ciphertext via a key). So why can I be held in contempt for refusing to disclose FURTHER information, which is clearly my own (the key)?

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

DanielRavenNest (107550) | about three weeks ago | (#47783241)

The owners of corporations are protected against unreasonable searches of their private business information, just like sole proprietors, or citizens in their data at home. As agents of the owners, corporate officers are the ones who should demand to see a warrant before granting a search.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47783379)

The problem, of course, is that corporations mostly just do what the government wants.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about three weeks ago | (#47784127)

The problem, of course, is that corporations mostly just do what the government wants.

You would too if the alternative was targeted malicious acts of discretionary prosecution against your corporation. This is the government that got caught red handed sicking the IRS on the enemies off the regime, something Nixon was impeached for.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47787443)

Well, some corporations did try to stand up to the government, so that doesn't apply to everyone. But still, the point wasn't that it's surprising, but that all this is unconstitutional.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47788055)

You had me until you mentioned Nixon. Nixon was never impeached. Why are people going around thinking he was?

And no, Nixon was not going to be impeached for sicking the IRS on people. It was about defying congress in it's investigation surrounding a series of breaking and entering instances by some FBI agents at the Watergate hotel which is where the DNC headquarters was for the next election cycle. The claim was they were trying to gather information on campaign strategy and corrupt the election while all but one of the FBI agents claimed it was to gather evidence on a prostitution ring the DNC was hosting for it's visiting donors. Nixon claimed he knew nothing about it, people close to him said he did, 18 or so minutes from a tape recording supposedly containing evidence that he was told about it and tried to cover up knowing congress subpoenaed it was erased.

Nixon resigned in shame when talks of impeachment started in congress, claiming he was not a crook and Ford Pardoned him. Nothing else was made of it as far as Nixon was concerned.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about three weeks ago | (#47790521)

Article 2, Section 1 of the watergate articles of impeachment:

1. He has, acting personally and through his subordinates and agents, endeavoured to obtain from the Internal Revenue Service, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens, confidential information contained in income tax returns for purposed not authorized by law, and to cause, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens, income tax audits or other income tax investigations to be intitiated or conducted in a discriminatory manner.

Now STFU you ignorant fuck. Stop acting like an informed person when you arent fucking informed. It took me all of 5 seconds to get this information verbatim so that I could quote it. All of 5 fucking seconds. Thats how fucking uninformed you are. Not even 5 seconds informed.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47790921)

Those mean absolutely nothing. Nixon was never impeached, those article were never voted on by congress iutside of commity and the entire reason anyone knew about it was specifically because the IRS said no to him when he tried to do it. That was only brough in to pile on after the defying congress part with watergate.

What happened was that nixon tried to use the IRS and they said no then told congress. You are wrong on both accounts- no political audits happenned and Nixon was never impeached. There is a difference between trying or wanting to do something and actually doing it.

Its pretty sad when Nixon had more integrity

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

dcollins117 (1267462) | about three weeks ago | (#47781371)

The cops can go ask your neighbors about you. The neighbor can choose whether or not to talk to them.

Yet my email can't choose whether or not to be read by them. That's one reason why I encrypt everything whether it's needed or not.

The other reason I encrypt emails is the assinine spam filter a certain ISP uses that many times falsely detects my emails as spam and does not deliver them. I'm too much of a gentleman to mention the company by name, but it rhymes with Horizon and it starts with the letter V.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47784769)

Police powers are reserved to the states. The federal govt can only intervene if interstate commerce is involved.

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (1)

eric_harris_76 (861235) | about three weeks ago | (#47785501)

Well, if 95+% of the elected, appointed and hired people in the federal government are busy being punished -- presumably by arrest, prosecution and imprisonment, but I'd settle for hickory switches methodically administered in a measured number of strokes for each infraction, by the nearest available taxpayer -- who's going to run the government?

I dunno, but wouldn't it be nice to find out?

Re:Haply so, but exec orders and agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47786207)

Staffers and interns?

Like most companies that operate in the United States?

There's no "led to" (3, Insightful)

Kohath (38547) | about three weeks ago | (#47780553)

Everyone involved made specific, intentional choices. It didn't happen on autopilot.

Re:There's no "led to" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781635)

True. The full extent of what the NSA does to Americans pales in comparison to Snowden. That's why I'm quitting my job. It's just too much and I'm becoming ill.

Re:There's no "led to" (2)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | about three weeks ago | (#47781957)

That's a pretty provocative few sentences. What job is it that you're quitting?

Re:There's no "led to" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47785871)

Why quit when you can help tear down the beast from inside?

It isn't due to an EO (2)

hsmith (818216) | about three weeks ago | (#47780561)

EO's have no real weight to create policy. They are simply instructions for federal agencies (which the President is in control of since he is the executive) to do.

Congress then up until now allowed it and the blame lies on their shoulders alone for creating the surveillance state.

Re:It isn't due to an EO (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780721)

EO's have no real weight to create policy. They are simply instructions for federal agencies (which the President is in control of since he is the executive) to do.

Congress then up until now allowed it and the blame lies on their shoulders alone for creating the surveillance state.

Funny how you state executive orders have "no real weight" when they've kept all of Congress at bay for over fourty fucking years.

Re:It isn't due to an EO (1)

hsmith (818216) | about three weeks ago | (#47781221)

Constitutionally they don't really do anything.

Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (4, Insightful)

turp182 (1020263) | about three weeks ago | (#47780579)

This is crazy. It seems Executive Orders are non-legislation afforded the impact of law.

Executive Orders should expire after a couple of years, or when a Presidential inauguration occurs, whichever comes first. Continuation should require Congress to pass it as ACTUAL law. And changes outside of that period MUST be ACTUAL LAW!!!!!

WTF!?!?!?!?

Sorry for the caps, I RTFA and it pissed me off.

I would suggest Executive Orders be done away with completely, they are an "I am the King" method of ruling. Not leading, ruling, controlling.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780649)

That would require a constitutional amendment.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about three weeks ago | (#47782151)

No, it wouldn't.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47788279)

Yes it would. Congress wouldn't have the power to make such a broad law over the administration of presidential powers and if a president did so by executive order, the next could simply undo it.

What is needed is judicial review or something to ensure the lawfulness and constitutionality of them if half of congress requests or something. The courts do have original jurisdiction over these issues as they often determine the lawfulness and constitutionality of government.

One of the problems is that a lot of executive orders made seem to be contrary to law and the constitution which is strange seeing how the entire power for them is derived by law and the constitutional obligation to faithfully execute the law.. but who has standing to challenge them.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (3, Interesting)

justcauseisjustthat (1150803) | about three weeks ago | (#47780679)

If the president had to go through congress to do everything, nothing would get done. I think the Obama administration is still trying to get appointments through congress from 2 years ago.

On the other hand the expiration idea has merit.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780715)

If the president had to go through congress to do everything, nothing would get done.

I'd rather nothing get done than allow one man to be able to use 'I am king' orders.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47786231)

The I am king is supposed to be used when congress has made it impossible to get anything done, like they are doing now.

I do agree that Executive Orders should have a time limit on them and then they go away unless voted in as law by congress.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about three weeks ago | (#47788551)

Wrong. Executive orders are supposed to be used when there is ambiguity in a law, when congress defers power to the administration, or where the constitution already gives the administration powers.

Executive orders are not I am King orders and without a basis of authorization like mentioned above, they will not survive a challenge in court. Unfortunately, administrations use them somewhat like a proclamation by the king but someone has to have standing in order to get the courts involved.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780737)

The rules were changed by Harry Reid to only need 51 votes for an appointment required by the Senate. The DNC has well over that 51 votes. Any problem getting those past the Senate has nothing to do with the GOP, it would have to do with his own party at this point. Been that way for about a year now.

Re: Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

belg4mit (152620) | about three weeks ago | (#47781195)

GP did not place blame on a party.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (2)

turp182 (1020263) | about three weeks ago | (#47780787)

So be it. I would take nothing over the Executive Orders. Congress passed the Patriot Act (terrible, terrible legislation), they would support some things.

No action is better than enforced action "requested" by a very small group (or a single person). Regardless of the implications (freedom an liberty before "risk" type stuff).

Checks and balances appear to be nothing more than bank notes and the ability to stand upright.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780805)

It's called the legal process you dumb fuck.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

0123456 (636235) | about three weeks ago | (#47781305)

If the president had to go through congress to do everything, nothing would get done.

That's...exactly... the... point.

The US government was designed to prevent things being done, because it was supposed to do very little. Probably 90% of the things the Federal government do are unconstitutional.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783507)

Here, here!

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | about three weeks ago | (#47782073)

That's not a bug, that's a feature. It's called the three "branches of government" for a reason. Executive, Legislative, and Judicial. Obama needs to work with Congress, not rule like a dictator by side-stepping the other two branches and creating "tzars" (38 so far, 33 under Bush).

Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780837)

The simple fact is that *most* executive orders are perfectly valid, and discontinuing them would serve no purpose.

A typical executive order simply designates procedures and requirements to be followed by people working for the Executive branch of the government. (Such as requiring that they not enter contracts with companies discriminating against employees for various reasons.)

This, however, is not a typical executive order. It is, quite simply, unconstitutional, and an explicit violation of laws written and passed by Congress. This is something that Congress, the States, and the People, *should* be getting upset about. Unfortunately, it won't happen, because roughly 50% of the country doesn't want to acknowledge anything that will make Republicans look bad, and roughly another half doesn't want to acknowledge anything that makes Democrats look bad. That leaves a few rational stragglers stuck in the middle, saying "WTF is up with you boneheaded ****wads?!!"

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (4, Insightful)

penix1 (722987) | about three weeks ago | (#47781757)

A typical executive order simply designates procedures and requirements to be followed by people working for the Executive branch of the government.

Which is EXACTLY what this executive order does. It is implementing at the Executive Branch the legislation to which it is based, namely the National Security Act of 1947 as amended. It even says so at the start of the order:

by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, (Act) and as President of the United States of America, in order to provide for the effective conduct of United States intelligence activities and the protection of constitutional rights, it is hereby ordered as follows:

http://fas.org/irp/offdocs/eo/... [fas.org]

Also, nothing in this executive order "led to" the warrantless wiretapping as alleged in the story. In fact, there are several places in the order that state that if US citizens are involved, it MUST go through the FBI / Attorney General. Read it. You will see what I mean.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about three weeks ago | (#47780921)

In a democratic republic, the president plays the role of emporer. Why does that surprise you?

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

turp182 (1020263) | about three weeks ago | (#47781039)

Per your sig, which I love more than any other song to play on guitar (excepting Follow You Into the Dark, which my 4 year old daughter requests at bedtime, my son requests Jack and Diane...), we are all in a cage if there is an emperor. I thought, via Civics in high school, that we didn't have an emperor.

Apparently, I have been wrong in my assumptions.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

khallow (566160) | about three weeks ago | (#47780967)

Executive orders are merely relatively formal written orders from the person in charge of the executive branch, the US President. If you do away with executive orders then no one is in charge and the only meager control you have is via Congress's power of the purse.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (3, Insightful)

Patent Lover (779809) | about three weeks ago | (#47781153)

Actually executive orders are orders that excercise lawful powers given to the President by Congress. The problem is that there are always lawyers making up their own interpretation of a vague law passed by Congress. C'est La Vie.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781573)

Congress shouldn't be able to give the president any powers to begin with. If the constitution doesn't say they can, then they can't.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about three weeks ago | (#47787805)

The constitution says the executive branch executes laws passed by the legislative branch. If congress couldn't give the president powers to apply laws, you might as well not have a government.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

rea1l1 (903073) | about three weeks ago | (#47781357)

Executive Orders, according to sovereign lore, relate to the idea that the original united States' Constitution died during the Civil War (late 1800's) and was reinstated as a corporate charter, while creating a corporation under the name UNITED STATES. Only corporations issue executive orders. Many youtube videos on this subject. It supposedly leads back to the Vatican, the Crown, and the District of Columbia all being agents of the shadow of government. Our government is actually a farce. Look into the IRS, registered voting, driving without a license, sine die (what ended the Constitution(contract) and replaced it with a constitution),

No law other than common and contract law ought to exist today as all people are considered sovereign.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (1)

Whorhay (1319089) | about three weeks ago | (#47783831)

The solution is to use and enforce EO's like they are supposed to be. Orders to the various federal troops, which are still bound and restricted by the laws of the land. Interpreting them as law should definitely be stopped. Removing them entirely though would mean that the President would not be able to formally control his branch of the government.

Re:Executive Orders Need to Expire, and Quickly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47786329)

In the immortal words of Captain Hector Barbossa "the code is more what you'd call 'guidelines' than actual rules."

YATDRA (3, Insightful)

mbone (558574) | about three weeks ago | (#47780583)

Yet Another Decent Thing Destroyed by the Reagan Administration.

I should have known.

Re:YATDRA (1)

Huge_UID (1089143) | about three weeks ago | (#47781905)

Maybe the NSA can figure out who stole your first 'D'. Having gotten that out of my system, I agree with you. Tax cuts for the rich, attacks on unions, support for right wing dictators - the list goes on and on.

NSA was collecting data in the 1960s (5, Interesting)

garyebickford (222422) | about three weeks ago | (#47780641)

A friend of my sister's worked for NSA for eight years in the 1960s. At that time the fact of its existence was classified - insiders said the acronym stood for "No Such Agency". He spent most of those eight years in a shack on a hill in Japan, listening and recording phone calls and telegraphs in and out of Japan. He came out of those eight years imbued with an extreme level of paranoia that he never did shake off. It cost him his marriage among other things.

So 1981 wasn't the beginning. I would be more likely to think that the directive in question was created to paper over and legalize what had been going on for decades before. The agency was founded by Harry Truman in 1952 based on signals intelligence units from WWI, per Wikipedia. I saw an article recently which asserted that spying on foreign (and some domestic) entities really came out of the period before and after World War I, and it made sense.

Having said all that, I recently learned that the NSA is not just "spooks peeking into our bedrooms" and getting everyone upset. That is just one of three branches.

- Signals Intelligence Directorate is the one that has been upsetting people, and may in fact be as crazy as people think they are;

- Information Assurance Directorate one might consider the "good guys" - they are working with US industry and agencies to prevent security breaches - one might consider this the "anti-spy" group, and you'll see guys from IAD at conferences regarding improvement of the security infrastructure of the net, to prevent spying and other problems. By all accounts the Information Assurance Directorate is working very hard to protect us, and has had some successes preventing or stopping serious hacking and other incidents against both public and private organizations in recent years that they, of course, can't ever tell anyone.

- Technical Directorate, which I assume is the people inventing the HW and SW the rest of the gang uses.

TL;DR - don't paint the whole of NSA with the same tar and feathers. Some, at least, are out there actively helping with things like Tor as we read recently - spy agencies including NSA have regularly helped Tor find and fix bugs, even while other groups in the same agency are trying to exploit them.

Re:NSA was collecting data in the 1960s (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about three weeks ago | (#47781007)

Yes, and they were slapped down by Congress via the Church Commission for doing what they did in the 60s.

Re:NSA was collecting data in the 1960s (1)

garyebickford (222422) | about three weeks ago | (#47784373)

Given the speed with which politics grinds, is to my mind why the Executive Order was signed a few years later, to provide some legal cover.

Re:NSA was collecting data in the 1960s (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782015)

Why does everyone say NSA?

Why woudn't you say The NSA?

Why is it 'NSA stole my lunch money' and not 'The NSA stole my lunch money'?

Re:NSA was collecting data in the 1960s (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about three weeks ago | (#47782195)

Yes some hints where given via the Martin and Mitchell defection in 1960 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org] too
"As we know from our previous experience working at N.S.A., the United States successfully reads the secure communications of more than forty nations, including its own allies."

Re:NSA was collecting data in the 1960s (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782313)

He came out of those eight years imbued with an extreme level of paranoia that he never did shake off. It cost him his marriage among other things.

This is pretty typical for people working for that kind organizations. It is not a result of the work but rather a part of the training, they are supposed to be aware of enemies everywhere so they see enemies everywhere.
In the end its a large organization that creates and encourages what normal people would consider a mental disorder.
This is why you can't ask anyone working at NSA if the work they do is necessary for national security, it's like asking a mentally ill person if he is sane.

Clearly Bush's fault. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780671)

I mean, really, he was once head of the CIA, and once he became VP, why not persuade the President this was good for America?

Please RTFA (4, Informative)

whoever57 (658626) | about three weeks ago | (#47780687)

Read the FA. THe summary doesn't explain exactly what is happening. EO 12333 originally allowed for collection of data abroad, but today, the collection happens in the USA -- in domestic Internet hubs. Naturally, the vast majority of the data scooped up this way is purely domestic and concerns US citizens, but the NSA claims that this is purely incidental. That's right -- the majority of the collection is "incidental". Yeah, right.

FISA? That rubber stamp is bypassed while collecting masses of data on US citizens.

"This program was started at least back in 2001 and has expanded to between 80 and 100 tap points on the fiber optic lines in the lower 48 states," he said by e-mail. "Most of these fiber optic tap points are not on the East or West coast. This means that the primary target of this collection is domestic... Most collection of US domestic communications and data is done under EO 12333, section 2.3 paragraph C in the Upstream program. They claim, near as I can tell, that all domestic collection is incidental. That's, of course, the vast majority of data."

Petition the White House (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47780795)

Time for a petition to repeal executive order 12333. Be interesting to see what happens if the petition reaches the action threshold, since there's no way the administration can say it's not within their power.
https://petitions.whitehouse.g... [whitehouse.gov]

Only government workers and contractors (2)

wiredlogic (135348) | about three weeks ago | (#47780883)

It's good to see that EO12333 has been placed in the spotlight. It always irked me how it tries to run around the constitution. The whole order is filled with phony "prohibitions" on government power with open-ended exceptions that can be invoked at any time.

My favorite parts:

2.3Collection of Information.
(e) Information needed to protect foreign intelligence or counterintelligence sources or methods from unauthorized disclosure. Collection within the United States shall be undertaken by the FBI except that other agencies of the Intelligence Community may also collect such information concerning present or former employees, present or former intelligence agency contractors or their present or former employees, or applicants for any such employment or contracting;

So basically any government agency can be tasked to collect domestic information without the pesky oversight the FBI has to deal with.

2.4Collection Techniques. Agencies within the Intelligence Community shall use the least intrusive collection techniques feasible within the United States or directed against United States persons abroad. Agencies are not authorized to use such techniques as electronic surveillance, unconsented physical search, mail surveillance, physical surveillance, or monitoring devices unless they are in accordance with procedures established by the head of the agency concerned and approved by the Attorney General. Such procedures shall protect constitutional and other legal rights and limit use of such information to lawful governmental purposes. These procedures shall not authorize:

(b) Unconsented physical searches in the United States by agencies other than the FBI, except for:
        (1) Searches by counterintelligence elements of the military services directed against military personnel within the United States or abroad for intelligence purposes, when authorized by a military commander empowered to approve physical searches for law enforcement purposes, based upon a finding of probable cause to believe that such persons are acting as agents of foreign powers; and
        (2) Searches by CIA of personal property of non-United States persons lawfully in its possession.
(c) Physical surveillance of a United States person in the United States by agencies other than the FBI, except for:
        (1) Physical surveillance of present or former employees, present or former intelligence agency contractors or their present of former employees, or applicants for any such employment or contracting; and
        (2) Physical surveillance of a military person employed by a nonintelligence element of a military service.

They've tried to be clever and hide what they did here with a double negative spread across two clauses. Effectively all defense contractor employees are subjected to domestic spying which was part of the rationale for justify creating the surveillance apparatus. They don't disclose that when you sign the contract suspending your rights when you apply for a security clearance. Note that that much of the internet enabled surveillance programs were instituted pre-9/11 under Clinton and not by Bush2 and this was going on before the PATRIOT act madness.

2.5Attorney General Approval. The Attorney General hereby is delegated the power to approve the use for intelligence purposes, within the United States or against a United States person abroad, of any technique for which a warrant would be required if undertaken for law enforcement purposes, provided that such techniques shall not be undertaken unless the Attorney General has determined in each case that there is probable cause to believe that the technique is directed against a foreign power or an agent of a foreign power. Electronic surveillance, as defined in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, shall be conducted in accordance with that Act, as well as this Order.

This is the kicker. This mealymouthed legalese effectively suspends the 4th amendment by granting the USAG a rubber stamp to authorize warrantless collection. Just like FISA this is an approval that is always given.

Re:Only government workers and contractors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781015)

Clinton and Gore also gave us NSAKey and CALEA.

did you know.. NSA does more than email (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781017)

And telephone data collection?

They also got satellites and over the horizon radar with full ground and building penetrating tomography. This let's them secretly spy on Americans even when they are under cover of a house, taking better than iPhone camera HD clit pics from space, and enabling full remote brain and body and thoight and memory scans. They also have been targeting Americans for torture and assassinations using these same interferometric platforms for decades, which allow electromagnetic frequencies or signals intelligence to Imping targets bodies for slow kill, instant death electronic and mind invading assaults.

They call part of the brain hacking technology remote Neural Monitoring and Electronic Brain Link and this is their most classified system used in surveillance.

Read the covering articles, patents and listen to Dr. Robert Duncan's whistleblower interviews about the technology here (Duncan's degrees from Harvard, MIT, Stanford, and Dartmouth, and he worked for the CIA, DOD, US DOJ, and NASA on designing dozens of different surveillance / electronic warfare systems): http://www.OregonStateHospital.net/d/story.html#nsabrainlink [oregonstatehospital.net] ..

FISA is crock (1)

jodido (1052890) | about three weeks ago | (#47781149)

Just shows what a scam FISA is. As if the "FISA courts" weren't proof enough.

Re:FISA is crock (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781295)

So who do we blame, Ronald Regan or the current FISA "court"? I am inclined to blame the contemporary perpetrators, the NSA and the Senate Intelligence Committee - especially Dianne Feinstein. It is the duty of the Intelligence Committee to protect the Constitution and they have abdicated that duty.

Another idiot lefty blames a Republican (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781367)

Move along -- same old nonsensical crap that doesn't even follow a logical path put out by lefties who swallow the kool aid without engaging their brain.

P.S. "It's all Bush's fault" and "It's all Reagan's fault" are both getting really old.

There is no privacy on the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781395)

1. Gov't is over reaching and conveniently interpreting (ignoring) the 'IAW applicable laws' clause.
2. A lot (not all) of this would not be a problem if people would realize the simple fact that nothing on the Internet is truly private.
3. "Two can keep a secret if one of them is dead."

Re:There is no privacy on the Internet (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781585)

2. A lot (not all) of this would not be a problem if people would realize the simple fact that nothing on the Internet is truly private.

Why not apply the same thing to your house, your phone calls, and every other thing that the government wants to spy on? Just because your privacy *can* be violated, that doesn't mean it *should* happen. You can have a relatively private conversation on the Internet, and especially if you use encryption.

This would still be a problem if people believed that there is no privacy on the Internet. The government should not be collecting all this information to begin with.

The Constitution does not stop at the border! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47781483)

What alarms me is that every branch of the government seems to think the Constitution stops at the border. That anything that happens outside our territory is fair game. But the President has no authority except that which is imparted by the Constitution. So it irks me to no end that the 4th Amendment is completely ignored just because the data collection is happening on foreign soil. I'm sure the Executive branch will claim that this is all for the national defense, but the massive collection of material unrelated to national defense negates that claim. The plutocracy that is running this country seem to be ok that if the government can do something, then it is OK to do it, especially if it is not in our backyard.

Re:The Constitution does not stop at the border! (1)

Feces's Edge (3801473) | about three weeks ago | (#47781597)

I'm sure the Executive branch will claim that this is all for the national defense

Which is irrelevant to whether or not it's constitutional, anyway.

My question (1)

TheDarkener (198348) | about three weeks ago | (#47781533)

After hearing so many of these stories, I have to wonder: Do these orders of govt agencies "slurping up" data, whether American citizens or not, include encrypted communications, or are they disgarded as it would take more time to "get to the meat" of things?

Re:My question (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about three weeks ago | (#47782259)

It depends on why the data was collected.
Globally the NSA and its friends collect it all.
If your telephone number is of interest, email, net use or social media use is of interest then its sorted, indexed, voice print is kept.
In the old days it was keywords, now its hops to people of interest and your own political, social activity and that of your friends or friends friends.
Your camera sensor pattern noise/noise signature, cell tracking, car...
Just the fact a person feels the need to use 'encrypted communications' found at a city, state, federal or international level makes them interesting.
The 'encrypted communications' would be kept, noted and the password looked for in past communications hinted at in IM or email.
if that fails and your still of interest - some form of key logger for the next time you encrypt or decrypt or open your application at keeps track of different passwords :)
An easy pattern might drop out of years of easy to find past passwords use that could be tested.
it really depends on who a person is, their friends, their friends of friends. Collect it all and sort is now the cheapest way of getting it all.

"otherwise it would be forbidden "? (2)

jcr (53032) | about three weeks ago | (#47781703)

Bullshit. It's ILLEGAL, period. Executive orders don't trump acts of congress, and acts of congress don't override the constitution. Every NSA minion involved in collecting this data without a warrant issued by a judge naming a specific person and stating what they're looking for and why, is a CRIMINAL.

-jcr

Re:"otherwise it would be forbidden "? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47782339)

Bullshit. It's ILLEGAL, period.

"period" isn't an argument. Stating it brings you down to the level of stomping in the ground and slamming doors. Don't do that.

Re:"otherwise it would be forbidden "? (1)

jcr (53032) | about three weeks ago | (#47782887)

"period" isn't an argument.

Who said it was? It's a rhetorical device for emphasis. Do you have some kind of cogent point to make, or are you just wasting my time?

-jcr

Re:"otherwise it would be forbidden "? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783629)

I get what you're saying, and I kind of agree, but it's not actually illegal. The PATRIOT Act clearly states the federal government has a right to all electronic communications, does not require probable cause to get a warrant on someone, and warrants can be extended indefinitely(no statute of limitation whatsoever).

Honestly I think the article itself is meant to be a distraction so that people won't think about the real root of the current surveillance state. The PATRIOT Act, which makes everything they're doing 100% legal by act of Congress. The EO in TFA might have set us on this path, but the real power comes from the PATRIOT Act. I've said it enough, but I'll say it a couple more times(because it hasn't really seemed to stick anywhere over the last decade): The real problem is the PATRIOT Act. The PATRIOT Act is where the NSA is drawing is power for wide spread surveillance of suspected US terrorists(aka citizens).

It's legal, but it's unconstitutional.

Re:"otherwise it would be forbidden "? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47786413)

The Patriot Act blatantly disregards the constitution making it illegal to begin with.

Re:"otherwise it would be forbidden "? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47788009)

The PATRIOT Act, which makes everything they're doing 100% legal by act of Congress.

The Patriot Act violates a number of rights arising under the 9th and 10th Amendments, not least the right to ethical practice of law, and as such it is 100% illegal.

another executive order exists, much more powerful (1)

strstr (539330) | about three weeks ago | (#47783703)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Order_13526 [wikipedia.org]

Executive Order 13526 was issued on December 29, 2009 by United States President Barack Obama. It is the latest in a series of executive orders from US Presidents outlining how classified information should be handled. It revokes and replaces the previous Executive Orders in effect for this, which were EO 12958 (text) and EO 13292 (text).

Within this order, and previous orders signed by President Bush, and other Presidents, exists the ability to create classified systems called Special Access Programs. In a Special Access Program, the entire program is black and hidden. And it bypasses the FISA court just the same, as normally only those involved in the operation even have knowledge of it's function or existence.

Within these programs you'll find space capability, military radar, electronic warfare systems, ground and building penetrating tomography, and brain hacking / surveillance technologies, to which the FBI, CIA, NSA, DOD, and local and state governments are all utilizing to spy on and even to commit rapes and murders of American citizens. Details of operations with insider whistleblowers, NSA Russell Tice and DOD/CIA/US DOJ/NASA Dr. Robert Duncan: http://www.oregonstatehospital.net/d/story.html#nsabrainlink [oregonstatehospital.net] . There's a good Russell Tice article talking about how Edward Snowden didn't have access to the juiciest documents, those hidden in Special Access Programs, Exceptionally Controlled Information programs, and Very Restricted Knowledge programs.

Video w/ Russell Tice available on this page and that previously mentioned page. http://www.oregonstatehospital.net/d/russelltice-nsarnmebl.html [oregonstatehospital.net] .

Two technologies are involved in these programs: NSA Remote Neural Monitoring and NSA Electronic Brain Link.

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCODE-2011-title10/html/USCODE-2011-title10-subtitleA-partI-chap2-sec119.htm [gpo.gov] .

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Executive_Order_13526 [wikisource.org] .

Sec. 4.3. Special Access Programs.

(a) Establishment of special access programs. Unless otherwise authorized by the President, only the Secretaries of State, Defense, Energy, and Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and the Director of National Intelligence, or the principal deputy of each, may create a special access program. For special access programs pertaining to intelligence sources, methods, and activities (but not including military operational, strategic, and tactical programs), this function shall be exercised by the Director of National Intelligence. These officials shall keep the number of these programs at an absolute minimum, and shall establish them only when the program is required by statute or upon a specific finding that:
 
(1) the vulnerability of, or threat to, specific information is exceptional; and
(2) the normal criteria for determining eligibility for access applicable to information classified at the same level are not deemed sufficient to protect the information from unauthorized disclosure.

(b) Requirements and limitations.
 
(1) Special access programs shall be limited to programs in which the number of persons who ordinarily will have access will be reasonably small and commensurate with the objective of providing enhanced protection for the information involved.
(2) Each agency head shall establish and maintain a system of accounting for special access programs consistent with directives issued pursuant to this order.
(3) Special access programs shall be subject to the oversight program established under section 5.4(d) of this order. In addition, the Director of the Information Security Oversight Office shall be afforded access to these programs, in accordance with the security requirements of each program, in order to perform the functions assigned to the Information Security Oversight Office under this order. An agency head may limit access to a special access program to the Director of the Information Security Oversight Office and no more than one other employee of the Information Security Oversight Office or, for special access programs that are extraordinarily sensitive and vulnerable, to the Director only.
(4) The agency head or principal deputy shall review annually each special access program to determine whether it continues to meet the requirements of this order.
(5) Upon request, an agency head shall brief the National Security Advisor, or a designee, on any or all of the agency's special access programs.
(6) For the purposes of this section, the term “agency head” refers only to the Secretaries of State, Defense, Energy, and Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and the Director of National Intelligence, or the principal deputy of each.

(c) Nothing in this order shall supersede any requirement made by or under 10 U.S.C. 119.

They can basically do whatever they want in Special Access Program. Anything, and everything, above the US constitution. There is no oversight at all.

realize government agents can do what they want :) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47784397)

they can do what they want, the constitution and laws and rules only come into play when lawsuits get filed and judges step up to take a look.

if no judge takes a look and no one sues, they can do whatever they want. they pass whatever unconstitutional laws, do whatever in executive orders, commit acts of torture, rape, murder, surveillance.. nothing can stop 'em, the laws and courts are a joke to 'em. the police aren't even gunna do shit, they don't give a fuck about enforcing laws against government, and they might themselves get exposed for taking part if they even tried.

in Special Access Programs they are committing heinous acts with no authority who can stop them. even the US Supreme Court ain't got power. the only thing that can stop them is another Army, if we did a civil war and removed 'em.

Hum (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47783953)

With all the focus on trying to blame a republican for an evil executive order, why doesn't obama man up and create a new one that abolishes the old one? Knowing who threw originally threw the grenade doesn't change the fact that it's going to explode.

Ronnie Reagan can't be wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47784027)

1981 is during the Golden Age of freedom and capitalism. There's no way Ronald Reagan, the poster boy of American Freedom, defeater of Communism would pass such am overreaching, non-freedom loving law!!

Taxonomy problem (1)

Libertarian_Geek (691416) | about three weeks ago | (#47784119)

Constitution>Law>Executive Order
This is how it works. This is how it was designed. The contained may not exceed the authority of the container.

Ending of the Cold War (2)

Ronin Developer (67677) | about three weeks ago | (#47784909)

What is interesting is that order was executed in the final years of the Cold War. There was no "Internet" so it is doubtful that this was the intent. However, we were still in a Cold War with the Soviet Union. And, there were communist sympathizers here in the US who would be subject to this surveillance. Additionally, the drug cartels and weapons trade were in high gear (ala Iran/Contra). So, given this context, it is understandable WHY this order was created and issued in the first place.

I doubt President Reagan envisioned the rise of the internet and the privacy concerns that the budding .com businesses would generate.

Where the fault does lay is that when these avenues did arise, is with the continued existence and extension of the initial order. This finger points directly at GHB, Clinton, GWB and now Obama. And, I would focus more on GHB given his close affiliation and vested interest with the intelligence communities. The dangers were well known by Clinton/Gore with the desire to push the Skipjack encryption algorithm into everything...right until it was revealed that the LEA (Law Enforcement Access Key...ala LEAK) key code could be forged rendered it a non-starter - it didn't meet National security needs once that was revealed and the common folk and business community would never accept it. RSA Laboratories was the key vendor of secure encryption at this point and fought against Skipjack. With that battle lost, sights turned elsewhere and we KNOW RSA's new overloads (EMC) sold us out for $10M. It was the perfect subject of a compromise given the pervasiveness of their products. I would venture their right to continue to exist was at stake and the $10M was simply a means to cover up the coehersion.

Ultimately, nobody but the brakes on this surveillance and we know where it has since led.

Who said it was "the legal basis"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47788823)

"the executive order that is the legal basis for the U.S. government's mass spying on citizens" - selection of words is important. Using the words "legal basis" implies that it is legal, so why are people complaining?

'the executive order that is used as the justification for the USG's mass spying on citizens' might be a more appropriate statement. But then, now days accuracy in word choice, or reporting, doesn't appear to be that important.

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