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[ale] NSA & AT&T spying on U.S. citizens


You ask what respected organizations have challenged NSA's illegal
spying on U.S. citizens' phone records and AT&T illegally providing
these to the NSA.

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is one of the principal organizations
challenging the NSA and AT&T in Federal Court.  EFF is a well-respected
organization that fights for the electronic rights of U.S. citizens.
(The ACLU probably also is involved, though they rarely fight for the
rights of ordinary citizens, IMHO.)

The Constitution's prohibition against unreasonable searches is what
the NSA and AT&T have violated besides specific laws forbidding the NSA
(and CIA and friends) from spying on U.S. citizens and forbidding phone
companies from telling anyone (and the gov't from asking) who you have
phoned without a search warrant.

Only the FBI (and Justice Department) and state & local equivalents can
investigate U.S. citizens and ONLY if there is probable cause that a crime
has been committed.  This distinction used to be what distinguished us
from Communism and dictatorships.

As for "Executive Orders", it is when a President CLAIMS that his office
gives him the right to do something.  Many have been struck down by the
courts or expressly overridden by Congress.  Recall that only Congress
may make laws and the courts interpret the laws and the Constitution.
Both Nixon and Clinton claimed to be above the law.  Nixon was forced to
resign and Clinton came very close to being removed from office, both
for trying to be above the law.

EFF is one of, if not THE, main organizations that also fights against
the RIAA illegally harassing citizens exercising their right to listen
to music and view DVDs that they have paid for, fights illegal claims of
copyright violations by RIAA and others for legitimately posted material,
such as on YouTube, and many similar issues.

EFF will have free classes during DragonCon for those going.

For more on EFF's case against AT&T:

Washington Post, "Bust Wants Phone Firms Immune to Privacy Suits," (May 4, 2007):

EFF also is one of the prime organizations trying to eliminate the
current electronic voting that violates your right to have your vote
counted.  For example, Georgia law requires the ability to audit the
records.  Presently there are no records to audit; with the old punched
cards, a re-count always could manually count the cards!

EFF also is one of the prime organizations pushing for real laws
prohibiting spam.

San Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed suit
Tuesday against Uri Geller -- the "paranormalist" famous for seemingly
bending spoons with his mind -- on behalf of a YouTube critic who was
silenced by Geller's baseless copyright claims.

Despite the fact that only three seconds of the over thirteen-minute video
contain footage allegedly under copyright owned by Geller's corporation
Explorogist Ltd. -- a classic fair use of the material for criticism
purposes - - Geller filed a takedown demand with YouTube under the Digital
Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). That violates the DMCA requirement that
copyright holders only send takedown notices for infringing content.
This lawsuit is part of EFF's ongoing work to protect online free speech
in the face of bogus copyright claims.  EFF is currently working with
Stanford's Fair Use Project to develop a set of "best practices" for
proper DMCA takedowns. At EFF's suggestion, media giant Viacom set up
an email "hotline" to help users who believe their videos have been
improperly ensnared in a takedown campaign.

Tell a friend about EFF:

Make a donation and become an EFF member today (I have)!

Bob Toxen
bob at verysecurelinux.com               [Please use for email to me]
http://www.verysecurelinux.com        [Network&Linux/Unix security consulting]
http://www.realworldlinuxsecurity.com [My book:"Real World Linux Security 2/e"]
Quality Linux & UNIX security and SysAdmin & software consulting since 1990.

"Microsoft: Unsafe at any clock speed!"
   -- Bob Toxen 10/03/2002

On Wed, Jun 27, 2007 at 04:10:39PM -0400, Jim Popovitch wrote:
> On Wed, 2007-06-27 at 15:40 -0400, Jeff Lightner wrote:
> > OK I know I said yours would be the last word and had truly intended it
> > to be but since this story just posted today that mentions the specific
> > law that is believed to have been violated I figured I'd post it:
> > http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070627/pl_nm/usa_surveillance_dc_2

> > P.S.  Before you say it - I know THIS story doesn't mention AT&T (or
> > Bellsouth or SBC) but that's only because its focus is really on the
> > failure to release documents rather than the underlying story which it
> > mentions only in passing.

> Jeff, what you fail to realize, time and time again, is that which is
> specifically mentioned in the "news" article you posted above.
> Specifically these words:

>     "Critics charge the program, conducted by the National Security
>      Agency, violated the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act,"

> There is no group of well respected, non-partisan, lawyers (those that
> truly know the legal precedents and standards) that are challenging the
> NSA's actions.  It is "critics" and partisans, on a fishing expedition
> no less, that are doing the blabber mouthing.   Jeff, you can't keep
> re-quoting partisan talking-heads and calling it factual news.  Please,
> look at the whole picture not just a piece here and there.

> Here's some home work:

> Look up and understand "Executive Order" and then truly learn what the
> FISA act is about, it's limits and it's loopholes.

> Best wishes, 

> -Jim P.