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U.S. Goverment Responds to EFF's Indymedia Motion

samzenpus posted more than 9 years ago | from the again-and-again dept.

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It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigation (-1, Redundant)

winkydink (650484) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782517)

At least that's what the govt's response to the motion to unseal says.

Good enough reason for me to keep it sealed.

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782547)

No fair buying a subscription just to get first post!

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782594)


Get the photos of the swiss cops here with this torrent [zaerc.com]
it was nothing about terrorists, just people taking pics of cops that were trying to intimidate activists.

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (1, Insightful)

winkydink (650484) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782617)

Without being a part of the investigation, would it be safe to say you are only familiar with those parts of the incident that have been made public? Is it possible there could be other, non-public parts?

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782811)

A friend in the UK at Rackspace said the cops were asking about "pictures of undercover officers" and nothing about terrorists. The undercover officers presumably have to worry now that their faces are public. At least that's the fed's line. If they were really undercover or covert they'd use long range telephoto lenses from buildings, not wander amongst protestors.

It was playing the heavy, nothing more.

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782636)

Does it pertain to an ongoing terrorism investigation in the sense that it discusses the politics surrounding terrorism? Particularly from a viewpoint unfavorable to the agencies performing the seizure?

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782672)

This is the problem with the so-called "War on Terror." Any investigation can be kept secret and officially proclaimed to "pertain to a terrorist investigation." After that, it is closed to public debate and due process no longer applies.

But it's already public... (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782713)

Assuming it's really about terrorists, the "Bad guys" already know the hardware was seized. An organization that depends on secrecy to survive would treat this as an infection, and cauterize the wound. (Meaning, eliminate the infection by dissociating themselves from it, and anyone that links them to it.)

So, if it's really a part of an investigation, they fucked up big time by not slapping IndyMedia with some sort of silencing order before news of the confiscation became public.

Re:It pertains to an ongoing terrorism investigati (4, Insightful)

dtfinch (661405) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782756)

Only if you trust the government, and all its employees, and believe the war on terror should be fought with such secrecy that there's no way to know for certain if their actions have anything to do with the war on terror, or if they're using it as a blanket excuse to do whatever they want.

Of all the millions of servers out there, they picked IndyMedia's. And how many days should it take to copy a hard disk for investigation, or to make another copy to put back into the server in place of the original? Couldn't most people do it in half an hour?

It's not so much that they needed the evidence for their terror investigations that demands an explanation. They sought to do more harm than necessary to gather their evidence. Their actions were an assault on the free press and possibly an unlawful seizure, violating two constitutional amendments.

Interesting (1)

winkydink (650484) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782790)

Post something that runs contrary to popular /. opinion and get modded into oblivion.

Kind of like a gag order, eh?

Re:Interesting (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782840)

Except people with guns aren't entering your home and taking your computer, as they would be in the situation to which your previous post appears to lend support.

True, this moderation system doesn't work so well, but you can't legitimately complain that people here only disagree with you due to your post's "unpopularity."

Translation: (5, Insightful)

Ph33r th3 g(O)at (592622) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782521)

It'd be rather embarrasing to admit we clamped down on a leftie news site just for political reasons.

You sir are a troll (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782574)

and a bad one at that, go fsck yourself

Re:You sir are a troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782590)

Your powers of deduction are indefagitable. Tell me, Holmes, how is it that your brilliant powers of intellect teased out that the poster is a "troll"?

Re:You sir are a troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782625)

he got modded up that all you need to know some one is a troll here, trolls get modded up.

Re:Translation: (5, Funny)

Sylver Dragon (445237) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782585)

You're viewing this all wrong. Those leftie news people are terrorists. They are questioning the One True Government. Attempting to report anything negative about the current government and/or administration undermines the authority of the government, and makes it harder to protect you from terrorists. If the government didn't clamp down on these people many True Americans might die, and the terrorists would have won.

You just reminded me... (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782744)

I have to find a local group that plays Paranoia [paranoia-rpg.com] .

Re:You just reminded me... (3, Interesting)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782819)

> I have to find a local group that plays Paranoia.

Huh? Where do you live, Citizen? AmeriComplex is the largest MMOLARP on the planet, featuring 300,000,000 LARPers playing 24/7!

Re:Translation: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782761)

If you weren't sarcastic and you changed one or two words, I would completely agree with you. Change "report anything negative" to "report only negative things"... Honestly, has CNN ever said anything good about Bush? has slashdot? the answer to the CNN question would be "very rarely"... the answer to slashdot would be "no, never". I don't know anything about the news source that's being reported on, but if it's anything like CNN or slashdot, I agree with your post (with the above changes and removal of sarcasm).

Aren't all lefties terrorists? (0, Troll)

Mustang Matt (133426) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782638)

Well maybe not all of them, but most of them right?

Re:Aren't all lefties terrorists? (4, Insightful)

shitdrummer (523404) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782850)

I think the US definition of a terrorist is someone who puts their interests, or the interests of their family or country before those of the US.

I define a terrorist as someone who is willing to use terror against civilians as a means to further their cause. By this definition, the US administration is a terrorist organisation. Not only that, I believe that the US can now be classed as a religiously fanatic state sponsor of terrorism.

Just ask yourselves, who is responsible for spreading fear throughout the US and the world? What colour alert level is the US on this week?

Shitdrummer.

hi (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782523)

first post!

QUIT SENDING ME KIDDY PORN SCOTT LOCKWOOD! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782525)

Scott Lockwood [slashdot.org] keeps sendingme kiddy porn! CUT IT OUT!

Ah, terrorism (5, Insightful)

Tim C (15259) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782526)

The 21st century's answer to Communism when it comes to ignoring due process.

Re:Ah, terrorism (4, Insightful)

wrinkledshirt (228541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782597)

It's even better than Communism, though. At least that had the U.S.S.R. as its main symbol, so when the U.S.S.R as we knew it fell, politicians had to shift off that war onto something else (arguably the "War on Drugs"?).

Now, though, it's been shown that the War on Terrorism can continue without any substantial nation-based symbol and can continue ad infinitum. Look at Iraq, and how a "terrorism threat" was conjured from practically nothing out of that country. Think it couldn't/wouldn't happen again if the war in Iraq was suddenly won, and the government's ratings were in the dumps, and a new enemy was needed?

Check out the PNAC [pnac.info] . It's not a football conference, but the latest way of governing the American people. Frightening and brilliant, and it's working.

Anyhow, all that means is that every now and then, things like this are going to happen.

Re:Ah, terrorism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782666)


s/pnac/cult

Re: Ah, terrorism (2, Insightful)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782648)

"The 21st century's answer to Communism when it comes to ignoring due process."

Because, yeah, 'ignoring due process' is only done by countries that promote anti-terrorism. Never mind that 'ignoring due process' (by American standards) is also practiced by China, North Korea, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, several African nations such as Nigeria, Somalia, Etheopia, as well as others. None of these countries ignore due process because of 'terrorism', they have other reasons. But in all of these countries 'due process' as well as basic human rights are _ignored_.

I am a Native American (Chippewa/Anishinabe), and I could probably pass for a mid-easterner if I had been working in the yard all day and then wore the right headwear. I would rather be mistaken for a terrorist in America than to be mistaken for an American in north korea or in various parts of saudi arabia. I would certainly rather spend time in a jail in America than in a jail in Saudi or N.Korea or Mexico for that matter. Yet when an issue of civil rights comes up, its america to blame. end rant.

p.s. i like civil liberties. i dont like some of the patriot act, and good to see you go mr. ashcroft.

Re: Ah, terrorism (5, Insightful)

Moofie (22272) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782692)

Other countries are not the Gold Standard of civil liberties. The Constitution is the Gold Standard of civil liberties, and it's being shredded.

That's the problem. We don't need to become less free to be safe. We're already much safer from terrorism than we are from getting eaten by sharks, so "safe" is not an issue.

The issue is control, and that should ALWAYS be resisted.

Re: Ah, terrorism (2, Insightful)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782773)

I agree with what you have said.

My problem, I guess, is that we are still more free than most people have been and are. So the gov't wants to see what library books I've checked out. Terrorism is a minor threat, I agree with you. Thats why we are not instituting internment camps as FDR did in WW2 to the japanese, germans, and italians. Thats why Bush has not declared himself the sole ruler of America, as Abraham Lincoln did. I dont fault old Abe or FDR, they did what they had to do. But you cannot seriously say that our collective rights are being curtailed anywhere as much as they have been at other points in our history.

I agree that you are more likely to die from bee stings as from terrorism. Or sharks. Thats not the point though. If Osama could kill one million americans, do you think he would hesitate to press the button? On the flip side, if Bush has the button (p.s. he does), is it going to get pushed? probably not. Hey, lets prevent Osama, Saddam, Jong-Il, et al from gaining such weapons. Or not.

either way, my life will probably end up the same. and either way, i wish the whole middle east would calm the fuck down. i dont want war, and im guessing most people over there dont want war either. but as far as human rights go, especially women, the afghanis are far more free, and the iraqis are able to protest US involvment. Great. Try protesting under Saddam, or Castro, or Jong-IL. Write me a postcard and let me know how that works for ya.

Re: Ah, terrorism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782695)

And your point is what?
You'll always find a place that is shitier, so what?

Re: Ah, terrorism (5, Funny)

Boronx (228853) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782733)

New Motto for George Bush's America:

"Still better than North Korea".

I'm sold.

And you're proud of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782750)

Because, yeah, 'ignoring due process' is only done by countries that promote anti-terrorism. Never mind that 'ignoring due process' (by American standards) is also practiced by China, North Korea, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, several African nations such as Nigeria, Somalia, Etheopia, as well as others. None of these countries ignore due process because of 'terrorism', they have other reasons. But in all of these countries 'due process' as well as basic human rights are _ignored_.

So, your mantra is "Hey, it's not quite as bad here as China, North Korea, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, several African nations such as Nigeria, Somalia, Etheopia when it comes to rights abuses, so I'm cool with it." Since when is being not quite in last place a good thing?

At least.... (5, Funny)

SkankinMonkey (528381) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782528)

At least they didn't cite god's will as the reason. ;)

Soon brother, soon. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782714)

Give us four new supreme court justices, and eight more years of control over the government, and the children will grow up to take us the rest of the way. Vote for charter schools, education is wasted on the poor.

Re:At least.... (1)

cdrudge (68377) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782743)

They couldn't. Ashcroft had already left.

Before you get too giddy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782881)

You might want to check into his replacement. I know what you're thinking, "He couldn't be right of Ashcroft. That would result in an overflow and a sign error in 2's compliment politics." But while Ashcroft was close to that edge, his successor is closer. He was one of the people who advised the Whitehouse that, among other things, it would be legal under some readings of the Geneva Conventions to employ torture. Which not only means he's a true sophist, but not much of a student of history.

The reason we abide by the Geneva conventions is so that we may expect other to do so. It is the carrot to the stick the predates the conventions, wholesale destruction of population centers as a matter of course, with the intent of inflicting maximum civilian casualties. If we don't use the carrot, and they don't fight a civil war, it's more difficult to justify use of the stick. Which given it's cost in human terms is already difficult to justify, even if defeat and using the stick are the only choices left.

1st (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782529)

1st

Next thing we read is (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782530)

Linux banned as terrorist OS

sweet, they should and put all /.er in jail (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782600)

you all are terrorists and you know it so go turn your selfs in before we come with the big guns. And we know you don't have guns becuase you are liberal weannys and are against guns, so we will not need the big guns, but it will give us great pleasure to use them just to see you little babies wet your diapers. Ah is little baby going to cry, here I can change your diaper for you [dpf.com]

Bill, is that you? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782629)

Come on gates. Give it a break.

Re:Next thing we read is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782797)

Linux banned as terrorist OS

nt, Ballmer.

US Legal system sucks ass (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782532)

and so do those who voted for in this government.

Bush, or Bush-lite (-1, Flamebait)

expro (597113) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782553)

Little difference.

Re:US Legal system sucks ass (1)

Bull999999 (652264) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782634)

and so do those who voted for in this government.

I ended up voting for Kerry but he also voted for the Patriot Act so it wouldn't have made any difference even if he won.

Re:US Legal system sucks ass (1)

Boronx (228853) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782759)

Didn't they seize indymedia computers in UK, and after 24 a judge ordered them returned since the government hadn't shown probable cause? And they did?

The contrast is striking. Our freedoms are disappearing. We now live in a nascent police state where police actions are justified on the say so of the police.

Nothing Important, People (2, Insightful)

the_mad_poster (640772) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782544)

Despite the conveniently edited write up above such that the response appears to be an inflammatory one dismissing the EFF's claims on "terrorism" grounds, there's not much of anything to see here. Basically, they say the documents should remain sealed because 1) the EFF is not in any position to request that they be unsealed, that's up to Rackspace and 2) the documents are part of an ongoing investigation that could be jeopardized by the unsealing.

Nothing to see here, move along move along. I'm sure, of course, this won't stop a bunch of card-carrying tinfoil elitists from crying wolf.

Re:Nothing Important, People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782614)

The response to (1) would be simply a FOIA request.

Re:Nothing Important, People (5, Funny)

captnitro (160231) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782642)

I object to the term 'tinfoil elitist'. When I wear my hat, it is made of only the most generic proletariat foil.

Re:Nothing Important, People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782658)

Parent was fair comment, until it used the word "elitist".

What is "elitist" about an open-membership, not-for-profit body using the law to fight the misuse of the law by a right-wing, sectarian government ?

Re:Nothing Important, People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782769)

That was a pretty lame attempt at a troll.

Go back to your room, spank yourself 37 times, and try again.

Re:Nothing Important, People (3, Interesting)

jfengel (409917) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782675)

Does the executive branch get to claim unilaterally from claiming that the investigation is ongoing, or does some judge get to investigate that claim? If not, is there any check on the executive branch's ability to make that claim for anything they choose to seize?

I left my elitist card at home; I'm genuinely curious.

As far as I can tell from RTFA, this is just the government's response to the motion; a judge still gets to rule. Yes?

Re:Nothing Important, People (1)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782731)

Yes, a judge still has to rule on the situation.

And yes, the judge can (and probably will) request further information on the case regarding its progress and how it would be jeopardized by the release of information. That information will probably not become public until such time as the investigation is complete, but it will almost certainly be provided.

Re:Nothing Important, People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782690)

How does that correlate into 'crying wolf'?

Those who would object do not do so just to get kicks out of it.

You're nothing but a self righteous nay sayer.

Re:Nothing Important, People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782828)

Yes, but you are ignoring the key fact that these hard drives probably shouldn't have been removed in the first place.

Abuse...more abuse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782548)

More Patriot Act for you.

Good (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782555)

Go Patriot Act, lets have the PA2 and the PA3 so we can put all the /. terriorists behind bars, and make this a free land once again!!!!!!!!!!!1

well fuck, dude. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782556)

goddamnit, i'm tired of this do-it, see if they bitch, link it with terror/DHS/etc, gag everything about it, make whatever you did legal, and fuck the people.

wow, interesting to watch the changes that are taking place.

Land of the free??? (2, Insightful)

toxickiwi (799307) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782564)

This is just a crazy, they call it the 'land of the free' but how free are you? Next thing you know they will be blocking website's to USA IP addresses if the FBI can't get it hands on the physical hardware.

Re:Land of the free??? (1)

Bull999999 (652264) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782607)

This is just a crazy, they call it the 'land of the free' but how free are you?

I guess no less free than UK, Italy, and Sweden.

Re:Land of the free??? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782709)

But definitely less free than the netherlands (for example).

Anybody still... (4, Insightful)

incom (570967) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782566)

going to even try to refute that the government merely has to cry terrorism to get whatever it wants? Where are you now apologists.

Re:Anybody still... (2, Insightful)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782598)

To the cynic in me, it's a clear-cut case of abuse.

But, with me as devil's advocate, you really can't prove it until a FOIA request is successful.

Enter the cynic again: That'll be in about four to eight years.

QUIT SENDING ME KIDDY PORN SCOTT LOCKWOOD! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782567)

Scott Lockwood [slashdot.org] keeps sending me kiddy porn! CUT IT OUT!

But your honor... (5, Interesting)

Phoenix Rising (28955) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782579)

... we didn't serve IndyMedia - we served RackSpace.

Ah, the complexities of an information society. According to the government, you'd better own the equipment, not just the data. Data owners apparently have no standing to sue if they aren't directly served, even if it's their data that's confiscated.

Re:But your honor... (1)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782630)

Yes, but the EFF *is not* Indymedia. Has *Indymedia* asked for the papers to be unsealed?

Re:But your honor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782786)

Yes. EFF is representing Indymedia. UCIMC is a movant in the case.

Re:But your honor... (2, Insightful)

adrianbaugh (696007) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782664)

Uhh... if the only copy of their data is a website somewhere, then they're idiots (albeit Real Men [irtc.org] ). So the feds have confiscated their backups; restore from the originals (or, in the case of web-sourced data, mirrors that they should regularly / continuously take). There's no excuse for relying on a provider for anything more than connectivity; if you need more than that (in terms of security, for example) you ought to be your own provider.

Re:But your honor... (2, Interesting)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782682)

Yes, or at LEAST have multiple providers, preferably in different countries to complicate matters for the authorities.

Re:But your honor... (5, Interesting)

parliboy (233658) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782674)

Query along those lines

In many jurisdictions (here in Texas to be sure), server leasing is considered leasing real property, just as if you leased an apartment or a car.

Now, let's say the government confiscates your leased car. Do you have standing to retrieve your car, or do you say back to the car company, "Take it up with the government"?

What the hell's going on? (4, Insightful)

Bull999999 (652264) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782583)

As far as I understand it, the Indymedia was hosted in UK but the FBI seized it on the request of Italian and Swiss governments. Is there an active interest in this matter by the US government other then just complying with the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Treaties (MLATs) [state.gov] ?

Re:What the hell's going on? (4, Interesting)

dietz (553239) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782680)

It is believed that the FBI seized it on the request of either the Italian or the Swiss government.

Since the FBI isn't talking, no one is quite sure who requested the actual seizure. Getting that information from the FBI is the first step towards unravelling this case.

Funny How They Cite International An Investigation (0, Offtopic)

geomon (78680) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782624)

And how happy they are to oblige our cheese-eating, surrender monkeys on THIS issue.

No doubt about it. This Administration will say anything, do anything, to stay in power.

Hell, they will even abandon their support for Reagan's famouns slam against Carter's Administration:

"I believe in states' rights; I believe in people doing as much as they can at the private level."

Now they are reigniting [reuters.com] the whole debate over Oregon's Assisted Suicide Law.

I guess when you can abandon your principles to win, you become just another Democrat.

Republicans: Democrats without the guilt.

oh, it was terrorism related... (3, Funny)

the-build-chicken (644253) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782627)

...you should have said earlier.

Everyone back to their business.

Cuz (4, Funny)

Goo.cc (687626) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782643)

They might as well have responded with a "cuz".

Re:Cuz (1)

wrinkledshirt (228541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782679)

Nah, that doesn't give enough explanation.

Unfortunately, "Cuz we hafta" does.

I could be mistaken... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782663)

But this little paragraph bothered me a bit if I've read and understoood it correctly.

"This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding."

Is it just me, or does that basically state the laws of any state anything in the Constitution do not apply when this law is used? It's saying there is a law *above* the Constitution?

Re:I could be mistaken... (1)

oldosadmin (759103) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782734)

That means the law overrides STATE consitiutions and STATE laws ... pretty well standard practice.

Re:I could be mistaken... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782789)

It is saying the hierarchy of law in the US is as follows:

US Constitution -> US Law -> State Constitution & State Law

No. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782812)

It means the Constitution is the authority which empowers the government of the United States to make and enforce law, and be the final arbiter of justice. And if the Constitution or to a lessor extent the laws of a State contradict what is being discussed, well, that's a special case and we know what happens.

Re:I could be mistaken... (1)

Elizabeth007 (829402) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782834)

Nope. What it means is this: No state can invalidate the Constitution or Federal Treaties with laws in their borders. For example, say State X wants to make it a law that if anyone calls a politican a potty-head, they would be arrested. This is in clear violation of the First Amendment and the law can not be applied because of that. I think what you may be unclear of is the first part. That basically means that laws can be made to easily enforce the Constitution. The argument is also made that when new issues come up that the founding fathers may have not thought of, new laws can be made to enforce that new issue. A good example of that is the whole abortion issue. While the SCOUTS have declared that a woman has the Constitutional right to choose, laws have been made to regulate that choice (for example, third trimester abortions, how abortions are performed, etc.). But this gets into the sticky situation of "strict" vs. "loose" consturctionalists, and that is a whole other (even longer) post. I hope I didn't confuse you more! ;)

Re:I could be mistaken... (2, Interesting)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782858)

But look what was said before, and how the legal beagles are b ullshitting:
2. As further grounds for the denial of the Motion to Unseal, without waiving the forgoing, the United States would show that pursuant to Article 8 of the treaty between the United States and the requesting country, entitled "Protecting Confidentiality and Restricting Use of Evidence and Information" states in part;

"2. If deemed necessary, the Requesting State may request that the application for assistance, the contents of the request and its supporting documents, and the granting of such assistance be kept confidential".

Such a request has been made to the United States by the Requesting State. The unsealing and release of the documents therein would violate the treaty between the United States and the Requesting State. Article VI of the United States Constitution states in part:
It says in the treaty that the requesting party may make a request that it be kept confidential.

It does not say in the treaty that the government is obliged to honour the request for confidentiality,

Therefore, the part that says that unsealing the documents would be a violation of any treaty is bullshit. BTW, what government is going to unilaterally give away their right to decide what is and isn't confidential?

More lawyer weaseling.

Most Slashdot readers... (5, Funny)

jd (1658) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782667)

Appear to be confused about this statement, claiming that it had to do with terrorism. No, it had to do with criminal terrorism. Other sorts of terrorism (as demonstrated by John Ashcroft's singing) are entirely legal. Please, please keep the distinction in your minds. Criminal terrorists are Bad. Legal terrorists are Good.

How do we know? (3, Insightful)

Bodysurf (645983) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782688)

that John Sutton (the US attorney) isn't full of shit when he writes:

"...3. "As further grounds for the denial of the Motion to Unseal, without waving the forgoing, the U.S. would show that the sealed documents pertain to an ongoing criminal terrorism investigation. The unsealing of the documents on file in the matter would seriously jeopardize the investigation. The non-disclosure is necessitated by a compelling government interest..."

unless we get a little more details that the vagueity that is the above?

Re:How do we know? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782825)

The judge can request those details. If it's true (and I seriously doubt it's true, but that's irrelevant) then obviously it makes sense not to have to leak the information in a public motion.

But the judge is able to talk more directly to the attorney and must be convinced. Whether or not the judge will actually do that, or will just take his word on faith, I dunno...

This is to be expected (3, Interesting)

nenya (557317) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782717)

Look, as long as the Patriot Act remains largely untested in court, the Justice Dept. would be incredibly stupid not to milk it for all they can. I'm pretty sure this kind of thing will be eventually overturned, but Congress passed the law, so now we've got to deal with it. Dealing with it will probably take the Courts striking down enough provisions that they send it back to Congress for a rewrite. This will probably take several years. Till then, it's a process. So far, it's a process that still seems to work. Give it time.

Re:This is to be expected (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782827)

the patriot act doesnt have a damn thing to do with complying with a treaty.

the patriot act is not the end all

mirrored operation (2, Insightful)

xoba (725894) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782719)

web operations and data that are clustered or distributed around the world would be immune to a single site's seizure.

You deserve it (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782725)

You deserve it for being passive to such a horrible government. You deserve it for selling out your children through your greed. Every american knows that they agreed to this injustice due to their inactivity. Just wait for the day that they take you away.

My children... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782728)

Welcome to America, land of the... nevermind.

New government policy: (1)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782730)

Blame everything and do everything because of "terrorism".

The American people fell for it just a few weeks ago, now they are testing it out on the technology sector. I call total bullshit.

Contention at its Finest! (0, Troll)

sciop101 (583286) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782747)

This thread is lame.

Don't vote? Write Slash-Dot.

Not USA citizen? Write Slash-Dot.

Bored with porno? Write Slasth-Dot.

I am going bowling.

Re:Contention at its Finest! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10782814)


...I am going bowling...

Sounds good to me. Just try not to commit mass murder afterwards [michaelmoore.com]

AC

Loophole you can drive a truck through: (2, Informative)

Ph33r th3 g(O)at (592622) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782755)

By citing Article VI of the Constitution and using it to say that treaty obligations require the seal, the government can conduct any black bag job it wants just by arranging a "confidential" request from any "friendly" foreign power.

Re:Loophole you can drive a truck through: (1)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782801)

Not quite. The Constitution still trumps treaties. A treaty that involves forcing people to house foreign soldiers, for example, would not fly because the forced housing of soldiers in time of peace is forbidden by the Third Amendment. Should a treaty be found to be unconstitutional, that treaty (or at least that section) would be unenforceable.

For Pete's sake. (3, Insightful)

rindeee (530084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782766)

Disclaimer: I'm not trolling (if I were I'd of posted anonymous).

The EFF has become a high-tech version of the ACLU. To some that may be a complement. To others it may have a negative connotation. To me it's the latter. It would seem that the more sensational a case is, the more potential there is for an EFF/ACLU to get involved, no matter the merits. I'm not implying that neither does any good, as they do certainly have their share of just causes, they just seem to be getting fewer and further between. Just my observation peppered with my opinion.

Re:For Pete's sake. (3, Insightful)

kaldari (199727) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782866)

So you're saying that the US government shutting down 20+ online news sites for a week without any explaination ISN"T IMPORTANT? I have to wonder what sort of trampling of our rights you WOULD consider important. Would you care if the FBI seized Slashdot's servers? The New York Times?

very sad (5, Interesting)

DM9290 (797337) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782808)

It is sad that in the United States you apparently need special standing to request the unsealing of information for a warrant/subpoena.

In Canada, the PUBLIC is considered to have an interest every time the STATE uses its power to seize something via a warrant/subpoena and any member of the public can request the information be unsealed and has standing to do so.

On a similar theme, the public has the right to order transcripts of court proceedings for the same reason.

The process of Justice is considered to be a matter of public interest. Not simply a private matter between the state and whoever the state is screwing over.

Their argument about the MLAT treaty is persuasive however. It seems to contradict their argument about terrorism however.

Either the seizure was according to the a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) and was therefore done on behalf of another country, or it was at the behest of US authorities to protect american national security.

Does anyone know the identity of the unnamed "REQUESTING STATE"? Or is that a secret also?

Because it seems by refusing to ID the requesting state the government is also necessarily refusing to ID the authority of which specific treaty they are relying on. Pointing out the Treaty would tend to ID the requesting state (in so far as it would be a signatory)

I don't think you can rely on a treaty if you don't want to identify it to the court. that is just my hunch. Justice is called Justice for a reason.

The All-Purpose Excuse (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782838)

1939: Get out of Jail Free
2004: part of an international "criminal terrorism investigation"

How can you question it? If true, and revealed openly, innocent people can die.

If false, and cover-up, heads should roll (figuratively).

I don't know about you, however all I can do is trust that the judge that releases, or holds up, the data is honest and accurate.

But Ashcroft said that terrorism was defeated (1)

g0hare (565322) | more than 9 years ago | (#10782843)

So why are we still bothering? And why wasn't it defeated before Nov 2? Why was the attack on Fallujah held up until after Nov.2? No reason, sure, just coincidence.
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