Wired: Federal Wiretap Surveillance Now

Wired: The Wiretap Now

Studs Terkel, the eminent chronicler of American life, has written this Op-Ed piece in today’s edition of the New York Times:

“EARLIER this month, the Senate Intelligence Committee and the White House agreed to allow the executive branch to conduct dragnet interceptions of the electronic communications of people in the United States. They also agreed to “immunize” American telephone companies from lawsuits charging that after 9/11 some companies collaborated with the government to violate the Constitution and existing federal law. I am a plaintiff in one of those lawsuits, and I hope Congress thinks carefully before denying me, and millions of other Americans, our day in court.

During my lifetime, there has been a sea change in the way that politically active Americans view their relationship with government. In 1920, during my youth, I recall the Palmer raids in which more than 10,000 people were rounded up, most because they were members of particular labor unions or belonged to groups that advocated change in American domestic or foreign policy. Unrestrained surveillance was used to further the investigations leading to these detentions, and the Bureau of Investigation — the forerunner to the F.B.I. — eventually created a database on the activities of individuals. This activity continued through the Red Scare of the period.

In the 1950s, during the sad period known as the McCarthy era, one’s political beliefs again served as a rationale for government monitoring….I was among those blacklisted for my political beliefs. My crime? I had signed petitions. Lots of them. I had signed on in opposition to Jim Crow laws and poll taxes and in favor of rent control and pacifism. Because the petitions were thought to be Communist-inspired, I lost my ability to work in television and radio after refusing to say that I had been “duped” into signing my name to these causes.

By the 1960s, the inequities in civil rights and the debate over the Vietnam war spurred social justice movements. The government’s response? More surveillance. In the name of national security, the F.B.I. conducted warrantless wiretaps of political activists, journalists, former White House staff members and even a member of Congress.

Then things changed….In 1978, with broad public support, Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which placed national security investigations, including wiretapping, under a system of warrants approved by a special court. The law was not perfect, but as a result of its enactment and a series of subsequent federal laws, a generation of Americans has come to adulthood protected by a legal structure and a social compact making clear that government will not engage in unbridled, dragnet seizure of electronic communications.

The Bush administration, however, tore apart that carefully devised legal structure and social compact. To make matters worse, after its intrusive programs were exposed, the White House and the Senate Intelligence Committee proposed a bill that legitimized blanket wiretapping without individual warrants….

I have observed and written about American life for some time. In truth, nothing much surprises me anymore. But I always feel uplifted by this: Given the facts and an opportunity to act, the body politic generally does the right thing. By revealing the truth in a public forum, the American people will have the facts to play their historic, heroic role in putting our nation back on the path toward freedom. That is why we deserve our day in court.”

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Be Social:

 

The Articles from Friday, October 26, 2007

Quoted: This is a rare filmclip of the reunion of the original Dreamgirls, Sheryl Lee, Loretta Devine and Jennifer Holliday at the AIDS benefit Divas Simply Singing, which was held on on October 6th in Los Angeles. It is said to be only Miss Holliday’s second appearance in 17 years. The crowd welcomed Ms. Holliday (voice slightly diminished, but still

[tags: blogs]

“Photos of the Day: Pay Per View.” These are very colorful photographs, accompanied by a delightful animated music video. Take a look and enjoy!!

[tags: Photo of the Day, Pay Per View, Paper View, photograph, music, music video, WordPress video]

“Photo of the Day: Madness and Love.” This is an engrossing, dark-toned photograph presented for you in high-resolution. The photograph is accompanied by a post-modern, animated music video titled “Go Mad.”

[tags: Photo of the Day, Madness and Love, photograph, love, music video]

Please View the Rest of My Articles at Blue Dot

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Be Social:

Rare Dreamgirls Reunion: Jennifer Holliday Performs at Divas Simply Singing

This is a rare filmclip of the reunion of the original Dreamgirls, Sheryl Lee, Loretta Devine and Jennifer Holliday at the AIDS benefit Divas Simply Singing, which was held on on October 6th in Los Angeles. It is said to be only Miss Holliday’s second appearance in 17 years. The crowd welcomed Ms. Holliday (voice slightly diminished, but still a force to be reckoned with) like a war veteran in a military parade, and the Dreamgirls reunion was both vocally tight and emotionally moving. Her performance brought down the house with a standing ovation.

Jennifer Holliday landed her first big stage role on Broadway in 1979. When only seventeen years-old, Holliday landed a part the same day that she auditioned for the Broadway production of Your Arms Too Short To Box With God. Her performance in that musical earned her a 1981 Drama Desk nomination. Her next role was the role for which she is best known: The role of Effie Melody White in the Broadway musical Dreamgirls. Holliday joined the show in December 1981 and remained with the show for nearly four years. Her performance in the role was widely acclaimed, particularly in her iconic performance of the musical number that ends Act I, “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”.

Among the acclaim was Holliday’s sweep of awards in 1982, including the Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical, a Grammy award for her recorded version of the song, and Drama Desk and Theater World awards for the performance.

Jennifer Holliday: And I am Telling You (February 2007, U.K.)

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Be Social:

The Articles from Thursday, October 25, 2007

Paul Potts, the opera-singing mobil-phone salesman from South Wales, roused audience members and stunned judges of the talent show Britain’s Got Talent. In June, it was announced that he was the winner of the competition. Now, his debut album, One Chance, has topped charts around the world.

[tags: blogs]


“Photo of the Day: MadeULook.” This is a very humorous photograph presented here for you in high-resolution. Gotcha!! Take a look and see.

[tags: blogs]

Please View the Rest of My Articles at Blue Dot
TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Be Social:

Photo of the Day: Madness and Love

Photo of the Day: Madness and Love

Going Mad

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Be Social:

Photo of the Day: MadeULook

Photograph of the Day: MadeULook

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Be Social:

Appalling New Video Footage of Anna Nicole

In this exclusive shocking new video footage of Anna Nicole Smith, she displays severely impaired reality testing abilities, possibly devastated by substance use or abuse.  Watch this new video footage below:

Shocking Video Footage of Anna Nicole Smith

TechnoratiTechnorati: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Be Social:

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,458 other followers

%d bloggers like this: