The Surveillance State: Is This the Price of Living in a ‘Free, Safe’ Society?

“If you’re not a terrorist, if you’re not a threat, prove it. This is the price you pay to live in free society right now. It’s just the way it is.”—Sergeant Ed Mullins of the New York Police Department   Immediately following the devastating 9/11 attacks, which destroyed the illusion of invulnerability which had defined … Continue reading “The Surveillance State: Is This the Price of Living in a ‘Free, Safe’ Society?”

‘Boston Strong’: Marching in Lockstep with the Police State

“Of all the tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive.” -C.S. Lewis Caught up in the televised drama of a military-style manhunt for the suspects in the Boston Marathon explosion, most Americans fail to realize that the world around them has been suddenly and jarringly shifted … Continue reading “‘Boston Strong’: Marching in Lockstep with the Police State”

Roaches, Mosquitoes, and Birds: The Coming Micro-Drone Revolution

“[Drones are a] game-changing technology, akin to gunpowder, the steam engine, the atomic bomb—opening up possibilities that were fiction a generation earlier but also opening up perils that were unknown a generation ago.”—Peter Singer, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution America will never be a “no drone zone.” That must be acknowledged from the outset. … Continue reading “Roaches, Mosquitoes, and Birds: The Coming Micro-Drone Revolution”

Eric Holder: If the President Does It, It’s Legal

“I never thought I would see the day when a Justice Department would claim that only the most extreme infliction of pain and physical abuse constitutes torture and that acts that are merely cruel, inhuman and degrading are consistent with United States law and policy, that the Supreme Court would have to order the president … Continue reading “Eric Holder: If the President Does It, It’s Legal”

The War Against Bradley Manning

“The war against Bradley Manning is a war against us all.”—Chris Hedges, author and journalist “I wanted the American public to know that not everyone in Iraq and Afghanistan are targets that needed to be neutralized, but rather people who were struggling to live in the pressure cooker environment of what we call asymmetric warfare.”—Bradley … Continue reading “The War Against Bradley Manning”

The Magician’s Con: Renewing FISA & NDAA Under Cover of Fiscal Cliff Debates

“If the broad light of day could be let in upon men’s actions, it would purify them as the sun disinfects.”—Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis What characterizes American government today is not so much dysfunctional politics as it is ruthlessly contrived governance carried out behind the entertaining, distracting and disingenuous curtain of political theater. And … Continue reading “The Magician’s Con: Renewing FISA & NDAA Under Cover of Fiscal Cliff Debates”

Obama’s First-Term Track Record on Civil Liberties

“I was a constitutional law professor, which means, unlike the current president, I actually respect the Constitution.” – Barack Obama, March 2007 Four years after Barack Obama was elected on a platform of “change you can believe in,” he’s now promising America that the “best is yet to come.” However, on almost every front — … Continue reading “Obama’s First-Term Track Record on Civil Liberties”

Has the President Become a Law Unto Himself?

“What lies at the nexus of Obama’s targeted drone killings, his self-serving leaks, and his aggressive prosecution of whistleblowers is a president who believes himself above the law and seems convinced that he alone has a preternatural ability to determine right from wrong.” – Peter Van Buren, a 24-year veteran Foreign Service officer at the … Continue reading “Has the President Become a Law Unto Himself?”

The Empire Strikes Back: Attack of the Drones

“The means of defense against foreign danger historically have become the instruments of tyranny at home.” – James Madison Drones — unmanned aerial vehicles — come in all shapes and sizes, from nano-sized drones as small as a grain of sand that can do everything from conducting surveillance to detonating explosive charges, to massive “hunter/killer” … Continue reading “The Empire Strikes Back: Attack of the Drones”

Everybody’s a Target in the American Surveillance State

“Everybody’s a target; everybody with communication is a target.” – A senior intelligence official previously involved with the Utah Data Center In the small town of Bluffdale, Utah, not far from bustling Salt Lake City, the federal government is quietly erecting what will be the crown jewel of its surveillance empire. Rising up out of … Continue reading “Everybody’s a Target in the American Surveillance State”