President Obama Wants the FBI to Have More Access to Spy on You

Obama got a game plan about this gun control stuff

Obama wants the FBI to have more access to you

Was concerned when the local news reported that President Obama is pushing new legislation to make Skype and other popular technologies available for the FBI to eavesdrop and spy on.. Obama says that people aren’t using phones as much and Skype is now being used so-called bad people they need to keep track of.. Now before folks go sounding off about how we need to do this to save lives.. I say BS.. If the FBI or anyone needs to track a SUSPECT there are other ways like old-fashioned surveillance or placing a bug on the person you are following … With all these warrantless wiretap laws this new push from Obama just furthers the rising police state.. Folks need to wake up..

here’s a more indepth article about what our government is doing..

This petitions comes courtesy of

Skype, BlackBerry, and other Internet communications services are under attack!  The Obama administration and the FBI are pushing legislation that would ban online communications technologies like these unless their developers make it easy for the government to wiretap them.

The Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA) requires telecom companies to make it possible for the government to wiretap their networks. Now Obama and law enforcement want to expand CALEA to cover all online communications technologies, including peer-to-peer and social networking apps.

Companies that want to avoid stifling regulations, and those that actually care about our privacy rights, would have to leave the U.S. That’d reduce our prominence as a technology leader, and encourage the government to devise ever more heavy-handed ways of blocking Americans from using the offending technologies.  Other companies would comply by creating back-doors that could lead to more privacy violations and make the Internet more vulnerable to attack: experts say wiretap-ready technologies would be much easier to hack.

An expansion of CALEA would be a tremendous blow to a free and open Internet.  Lawmakers need to reject it: Will you sign our petition demanding that they do so?

FULL TEXT OF PETITION TO CONGRESS:  The CALEA expansion would lead to more privacy violations and make the Internet more vulnerable to attacks, and would put U.S. technology developers at a disadvantage to their peers across the world.  We need you to reject it.

Just sign on at right and we’ll deliver the petition to Congress before they act on CALEA

75 Years for Taping the Police? Thats what One Man is Facing

I’m not sure what else could be said or written to make the folks aware of the urgency of this situation. There is a serious war being waged on ordinary folks at all levels, the most under reported involves the police who are rapidly going from state to state passing laws to make it illegal to not only videotape but also to simply take photographs..

Last week we told you about a case involving legendary producer Dr Dre who was facing a $3 BILLION dollar lawsuit for recording a police officer involved in a backstage dispute in Detroit. That case had been winding its way the Michigan court system for almost 10 years and finally made its way to the State Supreme Ct… many dismissed this and saw it as no big deal..

Now we have a man who is looking at 75 years in jail for videotaping the police.. Read the Alternet story below… While reading this ask yourself, what steps are you taking to fight back? Are you calling your congress person? Are you talking to local officials? Today its them.. Tomorrow it could be you who is caught up in some drama..

Also keep in mind that while police are busy pushing to pass these laws we have officers in Los Angeles lying to the public claiming they were shot.. Yes, you read that correctly…  Two weeks ago a  police officer said he was shot prompting  300 of his fellow officers to aggressively respond, They shut down schools, closed off streets and went running determined to find the culprit.. Turns out the officer who was shot lied..  You can read that story here in the LA Times

Folks may wanna take a listen to this important conversation we had on hard Knock Radio with privacy expert and lawyer King Downy about police and videotaping

-Davey D-

75-Year Prison Sentence for Taping the Police? The Absurd Laws That Criminalize Audio and Video Recording in America

By Lauren Kelley

Last January, Michael Allison, a 41-year-old mechanic from Bridgeport, Illinois, went to court to protest what he saw as unfair treatment from local police officers. Allison is an auto enthusiast who likes to tinker with cars, several of which he keeps on his mother’s property in the neighboring town of Robinson. Because both towns have “eyesore,” or abandoned property rules that require inoperable cars to be either registered or kept in a garage (which neither house had, and which Allison could not afford to build), Allison’s cars were repeatedly impounded by local officials.

Allison sued the city of Bridgeport in 2007, arguing that the eyesore law violated his civil rights and that the city was merely trying to bilk revenues from impound fees. This apparently enraged the local police, who, Allison alleges, began harassing him at home and threatening arrest when Allison refused to get rid of his cars.

Shortly before his January 2010 court date, Allison requested a court reporter for the hearing, making it clear to the county clerk that if one was not present he would record the proceedings himself.

With the request for a court reporter denied, Allison made good on his promise to bring his own audio recorder with him to the courthouse. Here’s what happened next, as reported by Radley Bilko in the latest issue of Reason magazine:

Just after he walked through the courthouse door the next day, Allison says Crawford County Circuit Court Judge Kimbara Harrell asked him whether he had a tape recorder in his pocket. He said yes. Harrell then asked him if it was turned on. Allison said it was. Harrell then informed the defendant that he was in violation of the Illinois wiretapping law, which makes it a Class 1 felony to record someone without his consent. “You violated my right to privacy,” the judge said.

Allison responded that he had no idea it was illegal to record public officials during the course of their work, that there was no sign or notice barring tape recorders in the courtroom, and that he brought one only because his request for a court reporter had been denied. No matter: After Harrell found him guilty of violating the car ordinance, Allison, who had no prior criminal record, was hit with five counts of wiretapping, each punishable by four to 15 years in prison. Harrell threw him in jail, setting bail at $35,000.

That’s up to 75 years in prison for breaking a law Allison did not know existed, and which he violated in the name of protecting himself from what he saw as an injustice.

As Bilko points out, Allison’s case may be extreme, but he is hardly alone in facing outsized punishment for efforts to combat police wrongdoing. Take Christopher Drew and Tiawanda Moore, two Chicagoans highlighted in the New York Times last week. Drew, a 60-year-old artist, faces up to 15 years in prison for using a digital video recorder during his December 2009 arrest for selling art without a permit. Drew had planned on getting arrested in protest of the permit law, which he saw as a violation of artists’ rights. He was unaware that filming the ordeal was illegal.

Likewise, Moore, a 20-year-old Southside resident, did not know it was illegal to record a conversation she had with two police officers last August, and she too faces a prison sentence of up to 15 years for doing so. Moore’s case is especially troubling because she was in the process of filing a complaint with the two officers about a third officer, who Moore alleges sexually harassed her in her home. She told the Times that she “was only trying to make sure no other women suffered at the hands of the officer” by making the recording. Presumably, she was also trying to protect herself in case she faced another lewd advance. Instead, the officers tried to talk her out of filing her complaint and then slapped her with eavesdropping charges when they found out her Blackberry was recording.

continue reading this story over at Alternet

Ludacris Says ‘Yes’, Ron Paul says ‘No’-Who Should We Listen to About the Census?

Congressman Ron Paul made headlines and ruffled some feathers the other week when he voted and then later penned an article encouraging Texans and people all over the country to not take the 2010 Census. He wrote; “I voted “No” on this resolution for the simple, obvious reason that the census like so many government programs has grown far beyond what the framers of our Constitution intended.’ We’ve known for a long time Paul has issues with privacy and government intrusion.

However in recent days popular rap star Ludacris has been on tour telling people they best fill out the census. Realizing that in past years African-Americans and other marginalized communities of color have not gotten their fair shake when it comes to Federal resources Luda noted; ““I look at our communities now and I see many empty lots, closed clinics, dilapidated schools and an overall breakdown of social services for the poor and elderly…Today is a day for change.”

Ludacris has promised that he will soon be visiting communities including Dallas, New Orleans, Orlando, New York, Washington and his native Atlanta.

Ludacris wants to make sure marginalized and poor communities get their just dues

“I plan to knock on doors in various neighborhoods around this country to try and dispel any myths about the Census,” Ludacris said. “It’s important that we all stand up and be counted so we can help create potential financial opportunities for our dying communities.”

With all that in mind, which way should we go? Personally, I understand the concerns people have about government and abuse of power. While Ron Paul has penned an eloquent essay speaking to those intrusions, many of us live in communities where our people have borne the brunt of such overstepping. However, we already know that in the age of GPS, internet, cellphones, ATM cards, credit checks, War on drugs and numerous laws on the books ranging from the Patriot Act on down, if the government really wants find us they can track us down. Trust me on that. We’re already on the grid. You don’t think if you live in the hood on the North side the local police departments haven’t already scoped out the neighborhood?

census 2010You don’t think they already know who’s there and who isn’t? I’m not saying its correct or desireable. I am simply saying in this case I gotta go along with Luda, in 2010 we need less vacant lots, more school supplies and extra money in our neighborhoods. Its our tax dollars providing them so might as well fill out the form and not trip. If I really wanna disappear off the grid, I can start by shutting down my Facebook page, Twitter account, toss my cell phone and somehow try to remove my all the photos people have posted of me on the internet and hope to God I can avoid high-tech recognition software. I can do all that and also hope that somehow in their zeal to collect fed monies for any number of law enforcement programs that I wasn’t somehow profiled and catalogued in some sort of traffic violation, gang, activist rabble-rouser police database

I can’t help but wonder while reading Paul’s essay why he wouldn’t want us to fill out these forms since one of his biggest complaints is that the government takes way too much money.  In a state like Texas which many have estimated will have a substantial increase in population, resulting in another 4-5 new congressional seats, shouldn’t we be filling out these forms and getting as much of our money back as possible?

If you take alook at the Census questions, there isn’t anything being asked that isn’t on some sort of government record anyway take a look for yourself if you don’t have a census form

The one set of questions that may raise concerns are the ones asking about additional people and I can understand those who have undocumented people living in the house not wanting to fill that out..but thats a whole other conversation. Even with that in mind, with increase monies already given to ICE and 287G programs, you don’t think the fear of government track downs that Paul raises is not already realized. 

brown communitiesTo be completely honest when you look at Paul and others who take the position that the borders need to be closed and walls erected, I can easily see folks who support his position alerting law enforcement about those who are undocumented.  That has nothing to do with the census and has everything to do with increased xenophobic attitudes.

Before reading Paul’s essay I’ll leave you’ll with one last thought. With so many marginalized communities especially Brown ones in Texas having large increases in populations is it possible, that folks may be whispering for us not to fill out the census as a way to keep us underserved because we’re undercounted?  With states like Texas set to get no Congressional districts, shouldn’t those districts be in areas where we have large population increases and if they happen to be where folks of color are living, shouldn’t we be taking advantage?  Think about it.. We’ll let Ron paul have the last word on this..

-Davey D-

Ron Paul: Census: A Little Too Personal,tx14_paul,blog,999,All,Item not found,ID=100308_3661,TEMPLATE=postingdetail.shtml

Ron PaulLast week Congress voted to encourage participation in the 2010 census.  I voted “No” on this resolution for the simple, obvious reason that the census- like so many government programs- has grown far beyond what the framers of our Constitution intended.  The invasive nature of the current census raises serious questions about how and why government will use the collected information.  It also demonstrates how the federal bureaucracy consistently encourages citizens to think of themselves in terms of groups, rather than as individual Americans.  The not so subtle implication is that each group, whether ethnic, religious, social, or geographic, should speak up and demand its “fair share” of federal largesse. 

Article I, section 2 of the Constitution calls for an enumeration of citizens every ten years, for the purpose of apportioning congressional seats among the various states.  In other words, the census should be nothing more than a headcount.  It was never intended to serve as a vehicle for gathering personal information on citizens.

But our voracious federal government thrives on collecting information.  In fact, to prepare for the 2010 census state employees recorded GPS coordinates for every front door in the United States so they could locate individuals with greater accuracy!  Once duly located, individuals are asked detailed questions concerning their name, address, race, home ownership, and whether they periodically spend time in prison or a nursing home – just to name a few examples.

From a constitutional perspective, of course, the answer to each of these questions is: “None of your business.”  But why is the government so intent on compiling this information in the first place? 

The Census Bureau claims that collected information is not shared with any federal agency; but rather is kept under lock and key for 72 years.  It also claims that no information provided to census takers can be used against you by the government. 

However, these promises can and have been abused in the past.  Census data has been used to locate men who had not registered for the draft.  Census data also was used to find Japanese-Americans for internment camps during World War II.  Furthermore, the IRS has applied census information to detect alleged tax evaders.  Some local governments even have used census data to check for compliance with zoning regulations.

It is not hard to imagine that information compiled by the census could be used against people in the future, despite claims to the contrary and the best intentions of those currently in charge of the Census Bureau. The government can and does change its mind about these things, and people have a right to be skeptical about government promises. 

Yet there are consequences for not submitting to the census and its intrusive questions. If the form is not mailed back in time, households will experience the “pleasure” of a visit by a government worker asking the questions in person.  If the government still does not get the information it wants, it can issue a fine of up to $5000.

If the federal government really wants to increase compliance with the census, it should abide by the Constitution and limit its inquiry to one simple question: How many people live here?