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Revealed: NSA collecting phone records of millions of Americans daily

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Revealed: NSA collecting phone records of millions of Americans daily --Top secret court order requiring Verizon to hand over all call data shows scale of domestic surveillance under Obama 05 Jun 2013 The National Security Agency is currently collecting the telephone records of millions of US customers of Verizon, one of America's largest telecoms providers, under a top secret court order issued in April. The order, a copy of which has been obtained by the Guardian, requires Verizon on an "ongoing, daily basis" to give the NSA information on all telephone calls in its systems, both within the US and between the US and other countries. The document shows for the first time that under the Obama administration the communication records of millions of US citizens are being collected indiscriminately and in bulk – regardless of whether they are suspected of any wrongdoing. The secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (Fisa) granted the order to the FBI on April 25, giving the government unlimited authority to obtain the data for a specified three-month period ending on July 19.

CIA didn't always know who it was killing in drone strikes, classified documents show

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

CIA didn't always know who it was killing in drone strikes, classified documents show --Former White House official: U.S. sometimes executes people based on 'circumstantial evidence' 05 Jun 2013 The CIA did not always know who it was targeting and killing in drone strikes in Pakistan over a 14-month period, an NBC News review of classified intelligence reports shows. About one of every four of those killed by drones in Pakistan between Sept. 3, 2010, and Oct. 30, 2011, were classified as "other militants," the documents detail. The "other militants" label was used when the CIA could not determine the affiliation of those killed, prompting questions about how the agency could conclude they were a threat to U.S. national security. The uncertainty appears to arise from the use of so-called "signature" strikes to eliminate suspected terrorists -- picking targets based in part on their behavior and associates.

Tropical Storm Andrea forms in the Gulf of Mexico

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Tropical Storm Andrea forms in the Gulf of Mexico 05 Jun 2013 Tropical Storm Andrea formed in the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday, the National Hurricane Center has reported. It's the first storm of the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season. An Air Force reconnaissance aircraft found a well-defined circulation over the east-central Gulf, and advisories on Tropical Storm Andrea will start shortly, the center said.

Giant 13-foot python on the loose near luxury golf course

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Giant 13-foot python on the loose near luxury golf course --Snake last seen with a 'giant lump' in its stomach 04 Jun 2013 (FL) The Burmese Python was last spotted heading up a creek near the backside of St. Petersburg's Vinoy Golf Club across from the upscale Snell Isle Estates neighborhood. (Video)

Former Hacker Testifies at Private's Court-Martial

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Former Hacker Testifies at Private's Court-Martial 05 Jun 2013 Adrian Lamo [Lame-o], the former computer hacker who reported Pfc. Bradley Manning to military authorities in May 2010 after Private Manning confided that he had provided vast archives of secret government documents to WikiLeaks, testified at the soldier's court-martial on Tuesday that he saw parallels between his own youthful hacking offenses and those of the young Army intelligence analyst. Mr. Lamo, who testified for about half an hour, has been a polarizing figure in the WikiLeaks case. He is despised by many of Private Manning's supporters for betraying the trust of a person they see as an important whistle-blower...

TSA Drops Plan to Allow Small Knives on Planes

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

TSA Drops Plan to Allow Small Knives on Planes 05 Jun 2013 The US Transportation Security Administration has abandoned a plan to allow passengers to carry small knives, souvenir bats, golf clubs and other sports equipment onto planes. The head of the agency made the decision following fierce congressional and industry opposition. TSA Administrator John Pistole had unveiled the proposal to loosen the rules for carry-ons in March, saying the knives and other items cannot enable terrorists to cause a plane to crash. He said intercepting them takes time that would be better used searching for explosives and other more serious threats.

Bill to block Newtown photos, records gets strong OK in Connecticut legislature

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

False flag facilitation gets green light in Connecticut: Bill to block Newtown photos, records gets strong OK in Connecticut legislature --Final draft expanded to include all homicide victims in Connecticut 05 Jun 2013 A bill that would keep sealed some photos and documents from the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting investigation passed overwhelmingly in the Connecticut legislature early Wednesday. The new legislation blocks public disclosure of any visual images depicting those who died in the shooting on grounds that release of the images would "constitute an unwarranted invasion of the personal privacy of the victim or the victim's surviving family members," according to the bill. The bill passed in the state Senate just after 1:30 a.m., with 33 senators voting in favor of the bill and two voting against. It passed in the state House at 2 a.m. on a vote of 130 in favor, and two against. The bill would prevent any graphic visual evidence of slain individuals from being released even through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filings. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy (D) supports the measure and is expected to sign it later this week, said deputy press secretary David Bednarz.

Another radiation leak at Fukushima nuclear plant

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Another radiation leak at Fukushima nuclear plant 05 Jun 2013 The operator of the wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant said it had found another leak of contaminated radioactive water on Wednesday, piling pressure on the utility to curb the problem as it seeks permission to release [radioactive] water into the sea. The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power plant endured events more than two years ago, triggering nuclear reactor meltdowns and explosions. Tokyo Electric Power, or Tepco, said a worker patrolling the area spotted the leak just after noon, with droplets of contaminated radioactive water leaking out between the tank's circular steel structure. The latest leak was acknowledged after Tepco said earlier this week it had detected radioactive cesium in groundwater flowing into the plant -- overturning an early finding that contamination was negligible. [Hey, Reuters 'journalists!' Don't be shy... you can use the word 'radioactive' instead of 'contaminated.' You're afraid of your corporate overlords. Luckily, CLG doesn't have such fears! So, we can speak truth to power and use the 'Coward's Cross Out' when required, as we do when the New York Times keeps referring to 'torture' as 'enhanced interrogation techniques,' and when 'news' outlets refer to the Syrian opposition's cannibals and terrorists as 'rebels.' --Lori Price]

North Carolina Governor: 'Moral Monday' Protests Against GOP Are 'Unacceptable'

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

North Carolina Governor: 'Moral Monday' Protests Against GOP Are 'Unacceptable' 05 Jun 2013 A day after a large protest at North Carolina's General Assembly flooded into the halls of the state Senate and led to more than 150 arrests, Gov. Pat McCrory (R-Racist) called for an end to the "Moral Monday" demonstrations that have become a serial feature in Raleigh. "We welcome feedback, we welcome lawful demonstrations, however, we don't welcome unlawful demonstrations, and that should not be accepted," McCrory said on Tuesday, according to WTVD. The governor went on to say he was not interested in meeting with the organizing groups, which include the North Carolina chapter of the NAACP, student unions and environmental organizations, that have gathered to air their grievances with the direction of the GOP-controlled legislature. While McCrory praised the peaceful nature of the demonstrations, he also told reporters that they were "unlawful" and therefore "unacceptable."

San Onofre Nuclear Plant security demands video be deleted

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

San Onofre Nuclear Plant security demands video be deleted --Team 10 crew detained by state parks police --Team 10's previous reporting uncovered a picture showing plastic bags, duct tape and broom sticks used to seal a leaky industrial pipe in the plant. 05 Jun 2013 An incident involving Team 10 has the National Press Photographers Association demanding an apology from the California State Parks Commission and the owners of the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. In late April, Team 10 was working on a series of stories involving the nuclear facility and its [mis]management.  Team 10 was shooting video of the facility from a public state beach when police and San Onofre staff demanded the video be deleted before Team 10 be allowed to leave the public park. The nuclear facility has been idle for more than 18 months because of a radiation leak... Team 10 also reported on a Star Trek spoof, shot inside the plant's training simulator, featuring senior plant managers.

US soldier pleads guilty in Afghanistan massacre

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

US soldier pleads guilty in Afghanistan massacre 05 Jun 2013 The American soldier charged with killing 16 Afghan civilians during nighttime raids on two villages last year pleaded guilty Wednesday to avoid the death penalty. Staff Sgt. Robert Bales pleaded guilty in a military courtroom to 16 counts of premeditated murder and other charges. He pleaded not guilty to one charge, impeding an investigation. Bales, 39, was charged in the March 2012 attacks on two villages near the remote base in southern Afghanistan where he was posted. Most of the victims were women and children, and some of the bodies were burned; relatives have told The Associated Press they are irate at the notion Bales will escape execution for one of the worst atrocities of the Afghanistan war.

Susan Rice to replace Tom Donilon as national security adviser

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Susan Rice to replace Tom Donilon as national security adviser 05 Jun 2013 President Barack Obama on Wednesday announced he was bringing longtime confidante Susan Rice, the U.N. ambassador caught up in political controversy over the Benghazi terrorist attack, to the White House to succeed Tom Donilon as national security adviser. Donilon had been widely expected to step down in Obama's second term, and the president thanked him for his service in announcing the change in the White House Rose Garden. Obama also announced he will nominate Samantha Power as Rice's successor at the United Nations. Power is a former special assistant to the president and senior director for multilateral affairs and human rights at the National Security Council.

Woolwich murder suspect's video link to court cut after he tells judge: 'Stop trying to stifle the truth'

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Woolwich murder suspect's video link to court cut after he tells judge: 'Stop trying to stifle the truth' --Prison officers told the court they wanted the defendant handcuffed because of their 'dynamic risk assessment' that he was unpredictable. 05 Jun 2013 One of the men accused of the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby had his video link to court cut after repeatedly interrupting the judge. Michael Adebolajo, 28, continually attempted to interject in the pre-trial hearing to complain about the way he says he has been treated. He told the court: "I am a man, I am a soldier, I am a British citizen." Speaking from Belmarsh prison, Mr Adebolajo was flanked by two prison officers in full riot gear. They were wearing the riot gear after an unusual application from the prison to have the defendant restrained.

Christie Criticized for Cost and Timing of Senate Election

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Christie Criticized for Cost and Timing of Senate Election 05 Jun 2013 Gov. Chris Christie (R) announced on Tuesday a highly unusual special election that was immediately criticized for costing the state $24 million and setting up a schedule that was likely to confuse the voting public. Voters will go to the polls on a Wednesday in October to cast ballots for a new senator, then return just three weeks later for the regularly scheduled general election, in which Mr. Christie will stand for a second term. Democrats immediately accused him of squandering taxpayer money to protect his own political ambitions at a time when the state budget is under severe stress, and some promised to challenge the decision in court. Just weeks ago, party leaders noted, he vetoed a proposal to establish early voting, saying the price -- $25 million -- was too high.

A County in Alabama Strikes a Bankruptcy Deal

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

A County in Alabama Strikes a Bankruptcy Deal --Lawsuit by county against JPMorgan over its improprieties, still active in state court, would be resolved as part of proposed agreement 04 Jun 2013 Jefferson County, Ala., took a big step toward resolving its historic bankruptcy case on Tuesday, saying it had reached an agreement to refinance most of the debt at the heart of its financial breakdown... The refinancing agreement covers debt held by creditors that include JPMorgan Chase, which holds about $1.22 billion of the sewer debt, the biggest block; three bond insurers; and seven hedge funds, according to a term sheet circulated in a meeting of the county commission on Tuesday. Despite those concessions, residents of Jefferson County have still often complained that they were treated inequitably because several of their elected officials went to prison as a result of the refinancing, while no one from the bank was convicted of a crime. They have railed in particular against the possibility that their sewer rates would go up to allow the county to pay sewer debt that many now see as illegitimate.

FBI raids offices of California Sen. Ron Calderon, Latino Caucus

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

FBI raids offices of California Sen. Ron Calderon, Latino Caucus 04 Jun 2013 The FBI this afternoon raided the Capitol office of Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, as well as the office of the Legislature's Latino Caucus, the Senate's sergeant of arms said Tuesday evening. "This afternoon, agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation served search warrants in the State Capitol at the office of Senator Ron Calderon and in the Legislative Office Building at the Latino Legislative Caucus office," said Tony Beard, the Senate's chief sergeant at arms, in a statement to the media. The FBI confirmed federal search warrants were issued in Sacramento.

Syrian forces regain full control of Qusayr area: Syrian TV

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Syrian forces regain full control of Qusayr area: Syrian TV 05 Jun 2013 Syria's state television reports that Syrian forces have regained full control of the strategic city of Qusayr following three weeks of fighting with the militants in the region. The Syrian military forces dismantled the network of the militants in the strategic area, which borders Lebanon. Many of the foreign-backed militants and members of the armed groups were killed or injured during the Syrian army operations to cleanse the region of the terrorists.

Fukushima thyroid cancer cases rise to 12 confirmed, 15 suspected

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Fukushima thyroid cancer cases rise to 12 confirmed, 15 suspected 05 Jun 2013 An ongoing study being led by researchers from the Fukushima Medical University on the impact of nuclear radiation from the disaster-stricken atomic power plant on Fukushima residents has found a slight [?] increase in thyroid cancer cases in the area's younger population. Data show 12 minors with confirmed thyroid cancer diagnoses, up from a total three in a report in February, with 15 others suspected to have cancer, up from seven from that same report earlier this year.

Commission weighs Sandy Hook 911 calls

June 5, 2013 by legitgov

Commission weighs Sandy Hook 911 calls 03 Jun 2013 The state Freedom of Information Commission on Monday ordered Newtown officials to provide it with the 911 calls from the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting while it considers an appeal for their release by The Associated Press. A hearing officer, Kathleen Ross, on Monday instructed the town to provide copies to the FOI Commission within two weeks. Ross said the commission would weigh objections raised by investigators as it evaluates whether the material should be made available publicly. Danbury State's Attorney Stephen Sedensky III, the prosecutor leading the 'investigation' into the Dec. 14 massacre, argued that releasing the calls could jeopardize the ongoing probe, subject witnesses to harassment from conspiracy theorists who have suggested the shooting never took place and expose 911 callers who should be protected as witnesses to a crime that amounted to child abuse.

Judge accepts insanity plea in Colorado movie theater shooting case

June 4, 2013 by legitgov

Judge accepts insanity plea in Colorado movie theater shooting case 04 Jun 2013 A judge has accepted James Holmes' plea of not guilty by reason of insanity in the Colorado theater shootings. Tuesday's decision sets the stage for a lengthy mental evaluation of Holmes, who is accused of fatally shooting 12 people and injuring 70 in a packed Denver-area movie theater in July. The evaluation could take months. Holmes is charged with multiple counts of murder and attempted murder.

Police say 2nd arrest made in stabbing of Steelers lineman Mike Adams, 1 other suspect sought

June 4, 2013 by legitgov

Police say 2nd arrest made in stabbing of Steelers lineman Mike Adams, 1 other suspect sought 04 Jun 2013 Police say they've arrested a second suspect in the weekend stabbing of Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Mike Adams. Police spokeswoman Diane Richard says 26-year-old Dquay Means was arrested Monday on charges of attempted homicide, aggravated assault and conspiracy. Police announced Monday that 25-year-old Michael Paranay had been arrested on the same charges. Both are from Pittsburgh. Richard says a third suspect is still being sought.

U.S. to send Patriot missiles, F-16s to Jordan

June 4, 2013 by legitgov

U.S. to send Patriot missiles, F-16s to Jordan 03 Jun 2013 Deployment of a Patriot missile battery and F-16 fighter jets to Jordan was approved over the weekend, a U.S. Central Command spokesman said. Delivery of the weaponry, as part of a multinational 'training' exercise, was approved by U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, CNN said Monday, noting a broader message is being sent.

Ecuador says to talk with Britain on Assange on June 17

June 4, 2013 by legitgov

Ecuador says to talk with Britain on Assange on June 17 04 Jun 2013 Ecuadorean Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino said on Monday he would meet Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague this month to discuss a possible solution to the year-long diplomatic standoff over WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange. Assange, 41, took refuge in Ecuador's tiny embassy in London last June to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over sex assault and rape allegations. He denies the allegations.

BP to drill in Alaska's pristine Prudhoe, after GOP Gov. slashes oil taxes

June 4, 2013 by legitgov

BP to drill in Alaska's pristine Prudhoe, after GOP Gov. slashes oil taxes --Tax proposal could cost Alaska up to $4.6 billion through fiscal year 2019 --Effort is under way to let voters decide whether to keep or repeal huge oil company tax cuts 03 Jun 2013 BP Alaska plans to bring two new drill rigs to the North Slope by 2016, part of an additional $1 billion investment the company envisions over the next five years following the state's rollback of oil production taxes. BP is the second of the North Slope's three major players, after ConocoPhillips, to announce plans following passage of the tax overhaul that was signed into law by Gov. Sean Parnell (R-Nutjob) last month. Exxon Mobil Corp. hasn't made its intentions public. Besides the new drill rigs, the company said it has the support of the other working-interest owners of Prudhoe Bay, ConocoPhillips and Exxon, to start evaluating an additional $3 billion in projects on the western end of the Prudhoe. [The petitions aren't working, folks. We need an actual *insurgency* to eliminate these corporate parasites. --LRP]

Supreme Court says police can take DNA samples upon arrest

June 4, 2013 by legitgov

Supreme Court says police can take DNA samples upon arrest 03 Jun 2013 In a major victory for law enforcement agencies, the Supreme Court on Monday ruled that police can take a DNA sample from someone who has been arrested and charged but not convicted of a crime. By a 5-4 vote the court reversed a decision last April by Maryland's highest court that overturned the 2010 conviction and life sentence of Alonzo Jay King for a rape committed seven years earlier. The court, in an opinion written by Justice [sic] Anthony Kennedy, handed a victory to the state of Maryland by saying taking of DNA samples was similar to taking fingerprints

Active Shooter and Mass Casualty Incidents

June 3, 2013 by legitgov

Active Shooter and Mass Casualty Incidents (fbi.gov) 03 Jun 2013 An active shooter is an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area. Overview of the FBI's Role: [Um, all of them?] When an active shooter incident takes place, local and state law enforcement are always the first on the scene. The FBI, however, has played a role in supporting the response to virtually every major incident in recent years and has much to offer in terms of expertise and resources. Shortly after the tragic shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut in December 2012, the FBI sought ways its personnel could better assist its law enforcement partners.

FBI Launches Active Shooter Webpage

June 3, 2013 by legitgov

FBI Launches Active Shooter Webpage [Yeah, they also launch the active shooters.] 03 Jun 2013 Recent active shooting incidents have underscored the need for a coordinated and consistent law enforcement response to these incidents. And two recent actions--the passage of the Investigative Assistance for Violent Crimes Act and an administration initiative targeting violent crime--have enhanced FBI efforts to better assist its law enforcement partners who are almost always the first on the scene. The webpage also contains links to FBI publications on the topic, active shooter incident statistics, and a link to a public service video created by the city of Houston.

Supreme Court: DNA swab after arrest is legitimate search

June 3, 2013 by legitgov

Supreme Court: DNA swab after arrest is legitimate search 03 Jun 2013 The Supreme Court has ruled criminal suspects can be subjected to a police DNA test after arrest -- before trial and conviction -- a privacy-versus-public-safety dispute that could have wide-reaching implications in the rapidly evolving technology surrounding criminal procedure. At issue in the ruling Monday was whether taking genetic samples from someone held without a warrant in criminal custody for "a serious offense" is an unconstitutional "search." A 5-4 majority of the court concluded it is legitimate, and upheld a state law.

Christie likely to appoint Republican to replace Lautenberg

June 3, 2013 by legitgov

Christie likely to appoint Republican to replace Lautenberg 03 Jun 2013 The death Monday morning of Sen. Frank Lautenberg, a New Jersey Democrat, deprives the Senate of a staunch liberal voice for gun safety, protecting kids from toxic chemicals, and bolstering public transportation, among other issues. But it also will likely give the GOP an additional Senate seat--at least for now. Under New Jersey's laws, Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican, will appoint an interim replacement, until a special election is held. The fill-in would then face a special election, likely this November when Christie will also seek re-election as governor.

Veteran Sen. Lautenberg dies; was U.S. Senate's last WW II vet

June 3, 2013 by legitgov

Veteran Sen. Lautenberg dies; was U.S. Senate's last WW II vet 03 Jun 2013 Sen. Frank Lautenberg, the New Jersey Democrat who was the U.S. Senate's last surviving World War II veteran, died Monday of viral pneumonia, his office announced. Lautenberg, 89, missed key Senate votes late last year during a weeks-long absence because of a cold that turned into what he called a "severe case of bronchitis with fluid in the chest." He announced in a statement in February that he would not seek re-election next year, but he continued to push for stronger gun control laws in his final months in the Senate.

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'We want either a hammer or a fire, to break the spell or dissolve the ice.' Artisan radical freethinker, George Jacob Holyoake, Reasoner V (1848): 2.

CLG's Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D. and Lori Price receive the Patrick Henry Think Tank's American Hero Award 02 Nov 2005 The Patrick Henry Democratic Club --A Think Tank working to give the government back to the people. "Give me liberty or give me death!"

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