Authoritarians

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Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant

The government and police regularly use location data pulled off of cell phone towers to put criminals at the scenes of crimes—often without a warrant. Well, an appeals court ruled today that the practice is unconstitutional, in one of the strongest judicial defenses of technology privacy rights we’ve seen in a while.

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit ruled that the government illegally obtained and used Quartavious Davis’s cell phone location data to help convict him in a string of armed robberies in Miami and unequivocally stated that cell phone location information is protected by the Fourth Amendment.

“In short, we hold that cell site location information is within the subscriber’s reasonable expectation of privacy,” the court ruled in an opinion written by Judge David Sentelle. “The obtaining of that data without a warrant is a Fourth Amendment violation.”

Sentelle is a Reagan appointee to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, generally considered to be the second most important court after the Supremes, so the decision will likely be considered to be precedential.

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This is the kind of argument that even an idiot neocon can understand.

The Chinese government is reviewing whether domestic banks’ reliance on high-end servers from International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) compromises the nation’s financial security, people familiar with the matter said, in an escalation of the dispute with the U.S. over spying claims.

Government agencies, including the People’s Bank of China and the Ministry of Finance, are asking banks to remove the IBM servers and replace them with a local brand as part of a trial program, said the four people, who asked not to be identified because the review hasn’t been made public.

The review comes a week after American prosecutors indicted five Chinese military officers for allegedly hacking into the computers of U.S. companies and stealing secrets, while former contractor Edward Snowden’s revelations last June of a National Security Agency spying program already hurt U.S. technology sales in China. Last week, China’s government said it will vet technology companies operating in the country, while the Financial Times reported May 25 that China ordered state-owned companies to cut ties with U.S. consulting firms.

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Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, escalated a behind-the-scenes dispute with the CIA by publicly accusing the spy agency of secretly searching a Senate computer system, an act she said undermines congressional intelligence oversight and may have violated the law.

The expanding dispute has opened a rift between the CIA and the Senate committee that oversees it and often has defended it. Already, some CIA officers could face criminal prosecution as a result of a Justice Department investigation of the incident.

“I have grave concerns that the CIA search may well have violated the separation of powers principles,” Feinstein said on the Senate floor. “I am not taking it lightly.”

I haven’t decided, yet, how I feel about this. On one hand, she’s saying something, and from what I understand they deleted documents that could have resulted in further shaming the Bush/Cheney two-man torture team.

On the other hand, I don’t remember her ever complaining about the rest of us being spied on.

So, I’m still inclined to refer to her as “the odious DiFi”.

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It’s a coincidence, White House aides say. President Barack Obama did not deliberately schedule his big NSA speech for Friday to mark the anniversary of Dwight Eisenhower’s warning that the “military-industrial complex” posed a potential threat to American democracy.

Eisenhower’s Jan. 17, 1961, speech portrayed the country as locked in a struggle of “indefinite duration” — he meant against Soviet Communism, though the label could apply today to Islamist extremism. He also noted that a vigorous military, and the industrial and technological apparatus that supports it, were necessary.

But then the former five-star general shocked Americans with this:

“In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.”

He went on: Link

Will be interesting to see what he has to say, and what will actually come of it.

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These greedy fuckers are keeping cumstains like Rand(y) Paul and Mike(y) Lee in office almost single-handedly. People gotta stop believing the hateful lies they spew (like, fer example, giving all of our money to 2 extraordinarily wealthy spoiled inherited wealth rich kids is somehow magically going to create jobs in this country).

Honestly, on some days I think these 2 fuckers, all by themselves, are worse for the country than the entire GOP (and the GOP’s idiot supporters).

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Good Question

Senator asks if FBI can get iPhone 5S fingerprint data via Patriot Act.

Al Franken, who is of course a Democrat, is inspiring.

It’s up to us, not congress. Get them to repeal the so-called “Patriot Act” and AUMF, or live with the consequences of our collective silence.

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Huge (no pun intended) bucket o’ crap:

Gov. Chris Christie’s habit of using his public office to promote his presidential ambitions has reached a new low.

We’ve seen him do it before. He closed down six Planned Parenthood clinics to appease right-wing primary voters. He’s dragged his feet relentlessly over medical marijuana and dismissed concerns over climate change for the same reason. This fall he is wasting taxpayer money by holding an election in October, in addition to the regularly scheduled November election, solely to protect the large victory margin he expects for his party.

But this time, he’s outdone himself. This time, he siphoned off money that was intended for victims of Sandy to promote himself in a series of TV ads. That is a new low, one that should play prominently in his campaign for re-election.

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Gabriel Weinberg, founder of search engine with zero tracking, credits Prism revelations with prompting huge rise in traffic.

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