Our Duty as Active/Prior Servicemen Regarding the NSA

A recent review by the federal government’s Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board concluded that the NSA monitoring programs “implicates constitutional concerns under the First and Fourth Amendments, raises serious threats to privacy and civil liberties as a policy matter, and has shown only limited value.”

All while their effectiveness was likewise shown to be questionable to non-existent. “We have not identified a single instance involving a threat to the United States in which the telephone records program made a concrete difference in the outcome of a counterterrorism investigation,”

http://reason.com/archives/2014/01/24/secret-government-is-the-chief-threat-to
Another article, though with it’s own bias being an anti-war site, makes some valid points looking at the historical perspective of monitoring. And how it near uniformly takes on a political/economical focus.

http://original.antiwar.com/engelhardt/2014/01/19/its-about-blackmail-not-national-security/

It is my opinion, that the NSA’s present activities constitutes a threat far more dangerous than any posed by Al Qaeda. And that these activities constitute a threat to the Constitution so grave that every active and prior service person who has sworn an oath to uphold the Constitution is duty bound to act.

Let me exemplify…

Our congressmen are sleaze balls. We all know that.  But there is one thing we can always trust them to do… that which is in their personal interest. The problem with the NSA’s grand spying, which they’ve essentially admitted includes Congress.  Is that it endangers Democracy. It enables them to manipulate Congress. 

Recently Diana Feinstein a Liberal Californian Democrat, who surely would of objected to these actions under President Bush, came out in support, exclaiming the necessity, for the NSA’s programs.

OR DID SHE????

Maybe Senator Feinstein has a bit O’dirt on her. (Do you think there is a Senator who does not?)   Maybe she hates the NSA programs. But they called her and said you either support us or we will reveal those unscrupulous financial deals and you can spend a few decades sitting in prison. Next thing Senator Feinstein knows is that she’s speaking at a press conference in their support and praising the necessity of their programs. 

Did that happen? We have no way of knowing, and therein lies the problem.
It doesn’t matter if it happened or not. Regardless we can no longer trust that out elected officials are in fact making decisions based on ours or even their interests.

Let’s exemplify further, just say the crazy notion of President Obama having been born in Kenya was in fact true. (I am not saying that such is true or not, just using it as a poignant example.) And the NSA has acquired evidence to that fact. They call up President Obama and inform him of their acquisition and blackmail him. Suddenly the President who preached withdrawal from the Middle East, the danger of raising the debt ceiling, critical of the Patriot Act, etc, etc, has policies indistinguishable from his predecessor.  And there in lies the danger. 

Service people take an oath to protect the Constitution and follow the chain of command and take orders from the President. But what happens when something so grievious puts doubt even to the authenticity of the President’s orders?  Do you not see how that is a grave and agregious threat to the U.S. system of government?

It is my opinion that the NSA is now actively an enemy of the state and that Americans have not faced a threat this dangerous since WWII. A threat that I feel obligates any “oath taker” to act.

So am I calling all service men to raise up arms? No… What I’m asking is that every service person, active or prior, raise up their vote. That we do not let ANY candidate get on the ticket unless they vow to oppose this abomination. And that vote AGAINST every sitting Senator or Representative who votes in support of the NSA. Even if it means voting against your party’s candidate, this issue suppasses all others. We must vote against this threat to the Constitution and the U.S. government.  This is OUR DUTY.

 

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Published in: on January 27, 2014 at 8:00 pm  Comments (1)  
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Supreme Court refuses to hear EPIC vs FISA (NSA monitoring)

SCOTUS refused to hear EPIC’s challenge against the FISA court in regards to the broad surveillance the NSA is enganged in.

I will say, that on the surface, this appears cowardly. But the article does mention a number of similar cases are filed. So perhaps there is in this queue a better case, litigant, etc.  In which I will hold out to hear. But I am disappointed that no comment was provided. And if ALL these other cases are dismissed in similar fashion. I would call SCOTUS cowardly and derelict in duty.

Who, if not the Supreme Court, is to review the actions of other courts on their merits of violating the Constitution. If they refuse to hear and address all of the cases filed, then I believe that the SCOTUS members would need to be removed from office.

And I am sorry, while I may not be a Constitutional scholar, I am pretty darn sure that if reviewed objectively, what is being done is clearly without a doubt unconstitutional.

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

Regardless if email, cell phones, etc. did not exist, papers were clearly the form of communication in the day. And it is protected, as such it is a fair extension. Afterall, we do call it electronic mail for a reason. And if not papers, than they are “my effects”.

Second, a warrant is to require probable cause, and that is supposed to be toward an individual or narrow group of individuals. Not a blanket warrant for every person in the nation.

Third, a warrant is to be specific, denote what is to be searched or seized.  Saying we’re going to seize a copy of every email, is not specific.

 http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Justice/2013/1118/Supreme-Court-rejects-case-on-NSA-spying-on-Americans-phone-calls

Published in: on November 18, 2013 at 4:02 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Reasons WHY are always changing….

Just thinking upon some Constitutional stuff…and how the “gun control” advocat’s brain typically works..

United States vs. Miller the court (1939) – this is where the courts deemed a shortened shotgun under 18″ had no use in a milita not being considered a military type arm. Ironic, that the debate today is “no military arms”. That’s right, in 1939 you couldn’t own it because the military didn’t use it. Now you can’t own it because the military owns it.

The point being, gun control lunatics will leap on ANY argument or reason, no matter how shallow, to support banning and disarming us.

Early proposal of the 2nd Amendment. The provision of noteworthiness being the exception for religious pacifists. And a statement to the need of an armed militia to keep the nation free.

“The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person.”

VS

“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

Even in it’s shortened and reduced version. And I wager the ‘religiously scrupulous’ clause was nixed by the assumption the 1st Amendment would provide that protection.

But a lot of people comment on “hunting”, we’re not going to take away your hunting rifle.  But what is the primary purpose of the second amendment in regards to the nation. It’s sure not hunting. It is the security of a “free state”.  Catch that, free state….free….(just in case you missed it).

 “Each and every free able-bodied white male citizen of the respective States, resident therein, who is or shall be of age of eighteen years, and under the age of forty-five years (except as is herein after excepted) shall severally and respectively be enrolled in the militia…[and] every citizen so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, and a knapsack, a pouch with a box therein to contain not less than twenty-four cartridges, suited to the bore of his musket or firelock, each cartridge to contain a proper quantity of powder and ball: or with a good rifle, knapsack, shot-pouch and powder-horn, twenty balls suited to the bore of his rifle, and a quarter of a pound of powder; and shall appear, so armed, accoutred and provided, when called out to exercise, or into service, except, that when called out on company days to exercise only, he may appear without a knapsack”

I also found this of interest.  The fact that we had a law in 1792 pretty much requiring that we be armed, or able to provision ourselves arms. Note “a sufficient bayonet”. Too bad this law wasn’t still on the books. It’d put a conundrum on the AWB.  But one should be able to make a good case that a bayonet mount is constitutionally protected by the 2nd Amendment. And I think this could be a case to pursue the overturning of any AWB should one pass.

That said, I do not really support laws that forces one to muster or be required to register so that you may be selectively selected to serve.  😉

“The term “regulated” means “disciplined” or “trained”.[122] In Heller, the U.S. Supreme Court stated that “[t]he adjective ‘well-regulated’ implies nothing more than the imposition of proper discipline and training.”

I am constantly trying to explain that this clause means trained/discipline/skilled/armed, as opposed to bound by laws.

***

You can read more at one of our favorite sites, Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

Published in: on January 21, 2013 at 6:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Flying… #nraam

I enjoyed it much more, before we lost the war on terror.

*scan*

*irradiate*

*grope*

SCOTUS Decision: GPS tracking requires a warrant

This is a great decision. It’s nice to see the intentions of the Constitution be upheld. This will likely be precedent setting, in that it essentially says “The emergence of new technologies does not eliminate the responsibilities of the government to adhere to the Constitution’s precepts.”

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/01/scotus-gps-ruling/

This is very important, even to the 2nd Amendment, as there may come a day when firearms are as obsolescent technology as the bow or sling. But we’ll still have the need to have the right to bear personal arms.

I’d really like to see this reasoning applied to infiltration and searches of things like phones and computers. It appears the big deciding factor was the physical act of installing the device. I am leery of the physical aspect being such a deciding factor. As such, were the FBI to simply hack an onboard GPS unit, would this decision still have gone down? I think it’s a case that needs to be decided. As all too often there seems to be this concept inside certain administrations that if they don’t physically go somewhere then no violation has been made. That somehow hacking or hijacking my phone calls, stored data or emails is acceptable.

Regardless, I find this a positive decision. Though I personally believe convictions should still be granted on ill-gained evidence. Just that those who gain the evidence illegally should suffer stiff penalties. I feel this way, in part, because I dislike violent and dangerous criminals being released back onto the streets on mere technicalities. If we know you committed murder, then we should be able to sentence you. If a police or other agent gained evidence illegally, then they should be sentenced separately.

Lastly, remember, we’re not talking about an inability of the police to monitor such individuals as this drug dealer. We’re simply saying that they need to get authorization for a warrant. In otherwords, by the point where they are considering monitoring, they should have enough evidence and insight to convince a judge that there is an aspect that warrants their suspicion. That’s all…just get a warrant. This sets apart a legal civilized police force from a gestapo.

Published in: on January 23, 2012 at 6:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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State of the Bill of Rights

Today a conversation led me to consider the state of our Constitutional Bill of Rights. While the following exhibits much hyperbole for humor’s sake. It’s frightening in the fact in one fashion or another. Here were some rambling thoughts:

First Amendment – Not allowed on public property. Invalidated if you don’t have a press pass.

Second Amendment – Just you try it….especially out of your home state. Partly cloudy. The good news, this is a right currently in recovery. And we’re making good progress toward restoration.

Third Amendment – Woot. Something is still protected for now. At least I don’t have to worry about National Guardsmen sleeping in my daughter’s bed. (Well not for another 15 years or so.)

Fourth Amendment – GPS tracking, infrared monitoring, phone tapping, yeah…this one’s pretty much dead.

Fifth Amendment – Let’s just label him a terrorist (or Ron Paul supporter). And waive his right to a trial.

Sixth Amendment – Let’s see…speedy trial (took me 9 months to get mine for a traffic violation – I won too). Trial by jury, hmm….Wells Fargo just sent me a new arbitration agreement in which I’ve apparently waived that right. This one’s in the gray.

Seventh Amendment – Jury, well… if you’re not getting your due process in 5 & 6….than likely no jury for you.

Eight Amendment – Cruel and unusual punishment, does 2 years of presidential election campaigning count?

Ninth Amendment – Wait was that right specified in the constitution, than no you don’t have it. “What, little girl? You want to sell lemonade! What…no way…not unless you have a $500 license and pay a $50/day vendor fee. Stop crying or I’ll throw your little *bleep* in the slammer.”

Tenth Amendment – What’s not been delegated has been absorbed into the commerce clause. Essentially making anything the Federal government wants; under it’s control.

Let’s not even go into the Congress’ right and responsibility to declare war. That was by-passed with the War Powers Act. Mind you, we haven’t had a War in decades. But we’ve had dozens of wars (if you define a war as an event that utilizes guns and bombs and kills people).

Published in: on December 30, 2011 at 10:03 pm  Comments (1)  
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Damn the Constitution full speed ahead….

Seriously, is there anything left of our Constitution?

We in the gun community often joke about how if we interpreted the Constitution the way anti-gunners do, then the Freedom of Speech would be exclusive to those with Press badges.

Well apparently, that’s what one Judge in Oregon believes. The case involves a female blogger who posted critical comments regarding a company. Stating that the claims were factual and from an inside source. And as such, she should be protected from being forced to hand over her “source of information”.

The judge deemed her unprotected by the Oregon statute because she is not a member of the card carrying press.

“. . . although defendant is a self-proclaimed “investigative blogger” and defines herself as “media,” the record fails to show that she is affiliated with any newspaper, magazine, periodical, book, pamphlet, news service, wire service, news or feature syndicate, broadcast station or network, or cable television system. Thus, she is not entitled to the protections of the law”

http://blogs.seattleweekly.com/dailyweekly/2011/12/crystal_cox_oregon_blogger_isn.php

Seriously, regardless of how you feel about such slander vs secret source sort of things. This goes on ALL the time in the media. How often do you hear about a rumor and no given source…probably every day.

The real question is whether a blogger is part of the “press”. Considering that Ben Franklin ran his “press” as a pamphlateer. And numerous others during the revolutionary period were loan pamphlateers, I believe that without a doubt that the intention of our Constitution was to protect the freedom of speech & expression. Not to protect a limited elite professional press corps who often are motivated by politics and money to cover and print select topics.

No that was NOT what our Constitution was founded for. Now before you go on and point out that this was an Oregon law, and not a Constitutional protection. I will concede that point. But with a caveat. Clearly this law is modeled off Oregon’s interpretation of the spirit of our Constitution’s first amendment. Second, the decision was based on the Oregon law and decided against on the claim that, as a blogger, she was not a member of any of the following:

“newspaper, magazine, periodical, book, pamphlet, news service, wire service, news or feature syndicate, broadcast station or network, or cable television system”

However, what is a blog? Is it anything but a digital pamphlet or wire service?

Can her blog we found in any aggragate feed on the topic? Thus syndicated?

This is either a failure on the part of the justice to be educated enough with modern technology, or is a direct attempt to diminish Constitutional rights as we move into new mediums. Both of these make this a very very flawed decision.

In light of recent decisions which have gone against the right of privacy, right to be free from unwarranted searches, bypassing of citizens rights to a trial, and more. One must be left considering, is our Constitution still a relevant text anymore? or just a piece of archeological paper?

Published in: on December 7, 2011 at 6:26 pm  Comments (3)  
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“a couple of traffic tickets and no criminal history”

I’m a little late on this one, it slipped by me until today.

Jose Guerena, former marine, gunned down in a SWAT raid. Served two tours in Iraq. The SWAT team claims they did not do a no knock warrant, and came in with sirens. (I’d really like to hear from neighbors if that was true.)

How often are we going to tolerate these style SWAT raids? Granted, it’s possible Jose Guerena was involved in some illicit activity. Wouldn’t be the first soldier to do so. But the officers involved have released no details as to any evidence collected.

But even if they did, can we believe them? SWAT teams are becoming quite famed for fabricating lies and planting evidence. (See Kathryn Johnston)

Well it didn’t take long for them to being fabricating. Apparently, they initially claimed Jose Guerena shot first. “They now acknowledge that not only did he not fire, the safety on his gun was still activated when he was killed”

“We spoke with several of the neighbors,” Epps says. “And none of them — none of them — heard any sirens that morning. Every one of them told us they didn’t hear anything, no knocking, no shouting, until the shooting started. They didn’t hear anything until the shooting started.”

Now mind you…it is possible that Guerena was in fact involved in some illicit behavior. Let’s say that all the known evidence to the contrary doesn’t exist and he was. We are seeing a practice of bad habits arising. No knock SWAT raids. Shoot first, question later. And poor intelligence (ie: woman and children in location at time of raid). None of these occurences should be happening in America.

But based on the fact so far, it’s looking pretty damning to police. For those wondering why Guerena would respond with a rifle. Could it be because his wife lost two relatives to a home invasion the year before?

In conclusion, we already know how this will end. It will be sent to an independent police board of made up of knowledgeful examiners. They will review the case in detail and conclude that no wrong-doing was done on the part of the law enforcement officers.

While the rest of us will exlaim, there is a dead “daddy”, a dead “marine”, a dead “American”. Only a liar or a thug can conclude there was no wrong-doing.

If we can sentence Ramos and Compean to prison for 10 yrs for shooting a drug dealer in the butt. How many years should a police officer get for shooting an innocent American who risked his life serving his country in Iraq?

For those who want to have their stomach sickened further, here are some additional links.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/25/jose-guerena-arizona-_n_867020.html

http://azstarnet.com/news/local/crime/article_a978c23a-a40f-5d0a-a203-76b88ac67e86.html

http://azstarnet.com/news/local/crime/article_d7d979d4-f4fb-5603-af76-0bef206f8301.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BJ_Jn9rlVs

http://pimasheriff.org/files/1013/0463/5381/OIS050511.pdf

UPDATE: Camera video is posted over at

http://cursesfoiledagain2.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/more-on-the-killing-of-jose-guerena/

Well, it does seem they did have the sirens on for a few seconds. Though that siren sounded a lot more like a car alarm going off than a normal police siren. Wasn’t much of a knock. And far from the original comment that they knocked loudly for

I could almost hear something in the background there. Not sure if it was an officer or Guerena.

Here is what I believe happened. I believe the SWAT team figured they’d roll in like a piece of cake. They’d briefly turn on the siren, knock softly a few taps in order to claim they’d done what they should. Then just knock the door in and tell everyone to go prone.

Instead, they knock open the door and see their suspect armed. They simply opened fire without any hesitation. I understand that the SWAT team wants to go home at night. But police have to take the high road.

Their tactics seem pretty dumb as well. 5 team members at the door. What if there were other aggressors, they’d simply exit the back. Or even come around and flank the officers. Even if Guerena was everything the SWAT team says. This was pretty much a botched raid.

QOTD: November 3rd

“The Second Amendment is the 4th branch of the government; and a part of the Constitutional checks and balances of power.”

Published in: on November 3, 2008 at 10:17 pm  Leave a Comment  
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