We are the 99%

November 12, 2008

Another Reason To Look Forward To January 20

From ABC News:

When Barack Obama takes the oath of office on January 20, Americans won't just get a new president; they might finally learn the full extent of George W. Bush's warrantless domestic wiretapping.

Since The New York Times first revealed in 2005 that the NSA was eavesdropping on citizens' overseas phone calls and e-mail, few additional details about the massive "Terrorist Surveillance Program" have emerged. That's because the Bush administration has stonewalled, misled and denied documents to Congress, and subpoenaed the phone records of the investigative reporters.

Now privacy advocates are hopeful that President Obama will be more forthcoming with information. But for the quickest and most honest account of Bush's illegal policies, they say don't look to the incoming president. Watch instead for the hidden army of would-be whistle-blowers who've been waiting for Inauguration Day to open the spigot on the truth.

For instance:
New Yorker investigative reporter Seymour Hersh already has a slew of sources waiting to spill the Bush administration's darkest secrets, he said in an interview last month. "You cannot believe how many people have told me to call them on January 20. [They say,] 'You wanna know about abuses and violations? Call me then.'"
Can't wait.

10 comments:

John K. said...

John K: Except for the fact that people like Altmire and the rest of the Democrats voted to support the bill. And also the fact that Hussein Obama ain't removing it.

John K. said...

John K: What do Democrats do when an actual case of govt violation of privacy actually occurs as in Ohio with the Joe the Plumber incident. That Ohio govt official is on paid leave while this is being investigated. But the absence of the ACLU is noticeable.

Maria said...

john k,

Do you ever bother to find out information for yourself or are you only capable of regurgitating the talking points that you hear on Rush/Hannity/O'Reilly?

From Christine Link, executive director of the ACLU of Ohio:

I was deeply disturbed to hear that state officials approved the use of government databases to obtain information about Joseph Wurzelbacher, also known as "Joe the Plumber." Rather than using state databases for their intended purpose, it seems some officials believe they can breach private information simply to satisfy their curiosity about someone in the public eye.

The most chilling aspect of this situation came from the explanation by Job & Family Services Director Helen Jones-Kelley stating that her office regularly conducts searches on peoples' personal information if they appear in high-profile news stories. Jones-Kelley had no evidence that Wurzelbacher owed any back child support, yet she still initiated the search. This is not only unethical, but a dangerous violation of our privacy.

It is appalling that government officials believe they may access a person's private information simply for being in a newspaper headline. This unethical practice only confirms that our state government does not have adequate checks in place to protect our privacy, leaving our most personal information vulnerable to the whims of a person's curiosity. Many people also could be frightened from speaking to members of the media or expressing their views because they could come under scrutiny of our state government.

This problem is crying out for immediate action by our top state leaders. All departments should have ethical procedures for accessing Ohioans' personal information, safeguards against people wrongfully accessing private data and clear consequences for violating these rules. In an age where so much information is available electronically at the touch of our fingertips, our leaders must create better safeguards against unfair breaches of our privacy.


And, there's this:

Further, ACLU of Ohio legal director Jeff Gamso told Media Matters for America, regarding Wurzelbacher: "We would be very happy to talk to him and see if there's something we could do to pursue redress for this violation of his privacy rights. We are deeply angered at the abuse of government databases, whether for political purposes, or for morbid curiosity or gossip. It's an altogether unacceptable use of private information."

John K. said...

John K: My point, where is the ACLU? Releasing press statements? Get real. But the larger point is that FISA works fine when liberals use it. By the way left wing kooks. How many FBI files will end up in the White House. Under Clinton is was 700. I am in the pool for at least 2,000.

kimber45 said...

johnk, the issue is one of "standing." The ACLU was not harmed by the apparent violation of Joe the Plumber's privacy. Only he was. So, only he has standing to bring legal action. Thus, the comment that " We would be very happy to talk to him and see if there's something we could do to pursue redress for this violation of his privacy rights. "

John K. said...

John K: Note for the record. The ACLU only made the offer after the election was over. After the State of Ohio succumbed to pressure from people like O'Reilly and after the guilty party had been indentified and sent home. ACLU came late to the party and made a press release acting like they have been there all along. Shame on them, they do not protect any of my civil liberties even though they are taxpayer funded.

EdHeath said...

The ACLU is not taxpayer funded.

Another casual lie from John K.

Dave said...

Do you ever bother to find out information for yourself or are you only capable of regurgitating the talking points that you hear on Rush/Hannity/O'Reilly?

Maria, do you really even need to ask by now?

jaywillie said...

No one's talking about getting rid of FISA, you dope!

Bush's warrantless wiretapping and FISA are not exactly the same thing.

And the ACLU is taxpayer funded?

Honest to God...if you want to come on here and behave like a flippant jerk, at least know what you're talking about.

You don't even understand how the country you claim to love so much even works.

Dave said...

jaywillie:

Honest to God...if you want to come on here and behave like a flippant jerk, at least know what you're talking about.

Maybe JohnK is hoping he'll be chosen as the Republican Vice-Presidential nominee in 2012.