Shamsi and Harwood, An Electronic Archipelago of Domestic Surveillance | TomDispatch

At any street corner the feeling of absurdity can strike any man in the face. –The Myth of Sisyphus ( Albert Camus)

More and more, when faced with the world of men, the only reaction is one of individualism. Man alone is an end unto himself. Everything one tries to do for the common good ends in failure. –Notebooks 1935–1942 (Albert Camus)

The question is whether a mood of despair, when shared widely enough, can become a source of hope.

This weakness of civil society at the federal level allows policy to be dictated by special interests. This is particularly true of foreign policy, more and more of which is driven by covert bureaucracies in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Pentagon, uncontrolled by the checks and balances of the public state.

==The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America (Peter Dale Scott)

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It began with an unexpected rapping on the front door.

When Wiley Gill opened up, no one was there. Suddenly, two police officers appeared, their guns drawn, yelling, “Chico Police Department.”

“I had tunnel vision,” Gill said, “The only thing I could see was their guns.”

After telling him to step outside with his hands in the air, the officers lowered their guns and explained. They had received a report — later determined to be unfounded — that a suspect in a domestic disturbance had fled into Gill’s house. The police officers asked the then-26-year-old if one of them could do a sweep of the premises. Afraid and feeling he had no alternative, Gill agreed. One officer remained with him, while the other conducted the search. After that they took down Gill’s identification information. Then they were gone — but not out of his life.

Instead, Gill became the subject of a “suspicious activity report,” or SAR, which police officers fill out when they believe they’re encountering a person or situation that “reasonably” might be connected in some way to terrorism. The one-page report, filed shortly after the May 2012 incident, offered no hint of terrorism. It did, however, suggest that the two officers had focused on Gill’s religion, noting that his “full conversion to Islam as a young [white male] and pious demeanor is [sic] rare.”

The report also indicated that the officer who entered the house had looked at Gill’s computer screen and recalled something “similar to ‘Games that fly under the radar’” on it. According to the SAR, this meant Gill “had potential access to flight simulators via the Internet.” Gill suspects that he was probably looking at a website about video games. The SAR also noted earlier police encounters with Gill, in his mosque and on the street.  It recorded his “full beard and traditional garb” and claimed that he avoided “eye contact.”

In short, the Chico Police Department was secretly keeping tabs on Gill as a suspected terrorist. Yet nowhere in the SAR was there a scintilla of evidence that he was engaged in any kind of criminal activity whatsoever. Nevertheless, that report was uploaded to the Central California Intelligence Center, one of a network of Department of Homeland Security-approved domestic intelligence fusion centers. It was then disseminated through the federal government’s domestic intelligence-sharing network as well as uploaded into an FBI database known as e-Guardian, after which the Bureau opened a file on Gill.

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via Tomgram: Shamsi and Harwood, An Electronic Archipelago of Domestic Surveillance | TomDispatch.

FBI Wants to Hack Computers Globally, Seeks Search Warrant Expansion | Global Research

The Justice Department is looking to remove restrictions on the FBI’s ability to hack into and monitor computer systems everywhere by easing the requirements necessary for it to obtain a search warrant.

Currently, law enforcement agencies can only receive warrants authorizing computer searches if the physical location of the computer in question falls within the corresponding jurisdiction of the judge they are appealing to. If the computer is outside of the judge’s jurisdiction, a warrant is not usually granted.

Now, however, the Justice Department wants to change this limitation, which is called Rule 41. It has asked a judicial advisory committee to allow judges to grant search warrants and permit electronic surveillance regardless of where a computer is located – within or outside of the United States,

Here’s why, according to the National Journal, which reported on the story:

“Law-enforcement investigators are seeking the additional powers to better track and investigate criminals who use technology to conceal their identity and location, a practice that has become more common and sophisticated in recent years. Intelligence analysts, when given a warrant, can infiltrate computer networks and covertly install malicious software, or malware, that gives them the ability to control the targeted device and download its contents.”

[gview file=”https://troutinmilk.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/The_FBIs_Quiet_Plan_to_Expand_Its_Hacking_Powers.pdf”]

[gview file=”https://troutinmilk.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/FBI_Wants_to_Hack_Computers_Globally_Seeks_Search_Warrant_Expansion.pdf”]

via FBI Wants to Hack Computers Globally, Seeks Search Warrant Expansion | Global Research.

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