Obama

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would end bulk collection of Americans’ phone data

The Obama administration is preparing legislation that would end the National Security Agency’s widespread collection of Americans’ phone data while, officials say, preserving the government’s ability to gain information about terrorists.

The legislation, senior officials say, would allow data about phone calls made to and from Americans to be kept at the phone companies. The companies would not be required to hold the data longer than they normally would.

The effort comes as the administration is up against a deadline set by President Obama in January, when he directed his subordinates to find a way to end the government’s mass collection of phone data, a program that has stirred controversy since it was revealed through a leak to the news media last June. He gave them until Friday to come up with options.

Read the rest at the link to the right wing WaPo. Seriously. Read it.

Bush/Cheney started it. Obama’s ending it. Sorta like the war in Iraq, and hopefully soon, the war in Afghanistan.

I seriously don’t understand why you guys think GOP Presidents are “no different” from Democratic Presidents. Bush the lesser was WAY worse than Reagan, who was WAY worse than Nixon, who was WAY worse than Eisenhower. (Yes, I left H.W. and Ford out on purpose. H.W. was a CIA spook and creepy as fuck, but at least he had the decency to raise taxes on rich fuckers, and Ford wasn’t elected.)

Our next GOP POTUS will make Reagan and Bush the lesser look like rational, saintly men. Our next GOP POTUS will end the first, fourth, and fifth amendments. Our next GOP POTUS will reduce corporate tax rates to zero, capital gains taxes, and end food stamps, extended UI, WIC, Obamacare (if the House and Senate are also GOP), and end if not seriously cripple SS and Medicare.

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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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US Government War On Hackers Backfires: Now Top Hackers Won’t Work With US Government

NSA revelations could hurt collaboration with ‘betrayed’ hackers

The U.S. government’s efforts to recruit talented hackers could suffer from the recent revelations about its vast domestic surveillance programs, as many private researchers express disillusionment with the National Security Agency.

Though hackers tend to be anti-establishment by nature, the NSA and other intelligence agencies had made major inroads in recent years in hiring some of the best and brightest, and paying for information on software flaws that help them gain access to target computers and phones.

Much of that goodwill has been erased after the NSA’s classified programs to monitor phone records and Internet activity were exposed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, according to prominent hackers and cyber experts.

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The SOTU

I probably don’t need to remind you of this, but I’m disgusted by anyone who was a gun-grabber the day before Sandy Hook standing on the bodies of murdered children to further their political agenda, just as I was disgusted by those who stood on the bodies of those killed on 911 (with a bullhorn in his hand) to further his political agenda. So, maybe I’m hyper-sensitive but I was a little bothered by Obama’s mention of “they deserve a vote” at the end of the speech. No, you don’t “deserve a vote” on overturning the constitution by a simple majority.

I’ll add that other than that, I think he sorta knocked it outta the fuckin’ park.

We’ll see what Boehner, who I’m about to defend, can do about it, seeing as how he’s dealing with a completely worthless teabagger caucus that places IDEOLOGY above country, and won’t compromise on anything, can get done.

So, here’s the real “meat” of what I observed; there’s a cold running through DC, right now. I’m just getting over it, as is my wife and one of my closest collaborators. As I watched the speech I was focused on Boehner, because his body language in response to the speech is meaningful in interpreting what can actually be accomplished in the next two years, and I think he has the same miserable cold I just suffered through. I saw him wipe his nose, and I saw him cough.

Now, I’m wondering. Is it possible to peal Boehner away from the vile, disgusting, repugnant, uncompromising, IDEOLOGICAL, rigid, unthinking, anti-Democracy, intransigent, (insert vile but valid stereotype here) teabaggers by giving him credit for actually caring what happens to OUR (his, mine, and yours) country?

Maybe.

We’ll see.

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I love this kind of thing.

Link to text

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Garry Wills

Republican operatives describe this year’s presidential election in apocalyptic terms. It will determine our future. It will seal our national fate. Well, they are probably right, but not for the reason they give. They tell Republican voters that President Obama, in a second term where he does not have to face re-election, will reveal and follow the full socialist agenda he has been trying to hide.

Only the gullible will swallow that. But the right does know that the future is at stake. That is because this election year gives Republicans one of their last chances—perhaps the very last one—to put the seal on their plutocracy. They are in a race against time. A Democratic wave is rising fast, to wash away the plutocracy before it sets its features in concrete, with future help from the full (not just frequent) cooperation of the Supreme Court.

It may seem odd to speak of the plutocracy as endangered. Surely it has established itself in every important political arena. Wealth is concentrated in a small fraction of the populace, the cosseting of whom with the Bush tax cuts plunged us into the great recession. Yet while the rest of the populace was suffering, the rich just got richer. In 2009 and 2010, years in which millions were unable to find work, the top one percent reaped 93 percent of the “recovery” income, and corporations are making more than they ever did. And the Republicans can still propose even further cuts in the taxes of “job creators” whose only job creation has been for their own lawyers and lobbyists.

Much more at the link.

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Brilliant!

Use the churches to shift a cost of health care to the insurance companies.

The only thing I’m sure of is that someone will accuse me of being a dumb fuck for “falling for” (insert wild theory, here), because;

A) Obama never does anything good, and

B) If he does do something good, it’s “not good enough”.

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Obama Signing Statement: The NDAA Doesn’t Apply To US Citizens

I haven’t seen it in “the news”.

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By DAVID LIGHTMAN
McClatchy Newspapers

President Barack Obama said Wednesday that any deficit reduction deal with Republicans has to include ending some tax breaks for the wealthy, and he urged lawmakers of both parties to “stay here until we get it done.”

“You can’t reduce the deficit to the levels that it needs to be reduced without having some revenue in the mix,” a feisty, sometimes defensive Obama said at his first formal news conference since March. “And the revenue we’re talking about isn’t coming out of the pockets of middle-class families that are struggling,” he explained. “It’s coming out of folks who are doing extraordinarily well … ” Obama had a message for those people: “You’ll still be able to ride on your corporate jet. You’re just going to pay a little more.”

Read more: http://www.kansascity.com/2011/06/29/2983509/obama-deficit-deal-must-end-tax.html#ixzz1QhxzCihC

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Image tweeted by Markos.

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