imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Police State Harshness

by Stephen Lendman Tuesday, May. 01, 2012 at 9:27 PM


Police State Harshness

by Stephen Lendman

On April 26, the House passed HR 3523: Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) of 2011 248 - 168.

A companion S. 2105: Cybersecurity Act of 2012 awaits Senate consideration. Obama promised a veto if passes. He lied. He does it repeatedly.

The Senate will pass or defeat what he wants. More than likely, it'll make cosmetic changes agreed to by House/Senate negotiators. Either that or they'll draft a new bill, under a new name, little different from CISPA to matter.

Last year, Obama promised to veto the draconian FY 2012 National Defense Authorization Act. It authorizes detaining US citizens indefinitely without charge or trial based solely on suspicions, baseless allegations or none at all.

US military personnel are authorized to arrest and indefinitely detain anyone globally, including US citizens.

Due process, civil protections, and judicial fairness are null and void. Presidents may order anyone arrested and imprisoned for life without charge or trial. Abuse of power replaced rule of law protections.

After refusing support, Obama signed it into law. Doing so enacted tyranny. Cybersecurity harshness hardens it. If Congress sends him a bill, he'll sign it. He's gone along with everything he pledged opposition to as a candidate.

CISPA is more about destroying personal freedom than online security. Post-9/11, it eroded steadily en route to destroying it altogether. CISPA is another nail in its coffin. Its burial plot awaits.

The bill gives government and corporate supporters unlimited power to access personal/privileged information online. Civil liberty concerns are ignored. Before passage, security experts, academics, and other professionals published an open letter to Congress, saying:

"Dear Lawmakers,

We are writing you today as professionals, academics, and policy experts who have researched, analyzed, and defended against security threats to the Internet and its infrastructure."

"We have devoted our careers to building security technologies, and to protecting networks, computers, and critical infrastructure against attacks of many stripes."

"We take security very seriously, but we fervently believe that strong computer and network security does not require Internet users to sacrifice their privacy and civil liberties."

"The bills currently under consideration, including Rep. Rogers’ Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act of 2011 (H.R. 3523) and Sen. McCain’s SECURE IT Act (S. 2151), are drafted to allow entities who participate in relaying or receiving Internet traffic to freely monitor and redistribute those network communications."

"The bills nullify current legal protections against wiretapping and similar civil liberties violations for that kind of broad data sharing. By encouraging the transfer of users' private communications to US Federal agencies, and lacking good public accountability or transparency, these “cybersecurity” bills unnecessarily trade our civil liberties for the promise of improved network security."

"As experts in the field, we reject this false trade-off and urge you to oppose any cybersecurity initiative that does not explicitly include appropriate methods to ensure the protection of users’ civil liberties."

"In summary, we urge you to reject legislation that:

Uses vague language to describe network security attacks, threat indicators, and countermeasures, allowing for the possibility that innocuous online activities could be construed as 'cybersecurity' threats."

"Exempts 'cybersecurity' activities from existing laws that protect individuals’ privacy and devices, such as the Wiretap Act, the Stored Communications Act, and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act."

"Gives sweeping immunity from liability to companies even if they violate individuals’ privacy, and without evidence of wrongdoing."

"Allows data originally collected through 'cybersecurity' programs to be used to prosecute unrelated crimes."

"We appreciate your interest in making our networks more secure, but passing legislation that suffers from the problems above would be a grave mistake for privacy and civil liberties, and will not be a step forward in making us safer."

The Free Market Coalition and Ron Paul called CISPA provisions "dangerously vague." Already eroded privacy laws will be gutted. Online content may be freely accessed covertly, including personal emails and web sites visited.

Last minute amendments put lipstick on a pig. Bill sponsor Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) packaged five.

(1) Minimization Retention and Notification Amendment

It does little to "minimize" retaining sensitive information. Nothing with teeth prevents authorities from accessing whatever they wish for whatever alleged reasons. Privacy and civil liberty protections aren't considered.

(2) Definitions Amendment

The amendment excludes intelligence pertaining to gaining unauthorized access that "solely involves violations of consumer terms of service or consumer licensing agreements and do not otherwise constitute unauthorized access."

However, vague definitions remain. Authorities can use them to access whatever information they wish.

(3) Liability Amendment

It's one of the bill's biggest problems. It creates "expansive legal immunity." It leaves government and corporations largely unaccountable. It provides "good faith" immunity.

It means government and business can't be held liable for acting "in good faith." Who'll prove otherwise if they say so, no matter who's harmed or how badly.

(4) Limitation Amendment

It leaves civil liberty concerns unaddressed. Its language changed nothing.

(5) Use Amendment

It deals with usage of data collected. CISPA's original language let business share it for "cybersecurity" purposes. Government can use it for "national security" reasons.

New language modestly narrows usage but not enough. It still allows data sharing for cybersecurity purposes, to investigate alleged online crimes, to supposedly protect users from death or harm, to prevent minors from accessing pornography, be sexually exploited online, or otherwise threatened, and for national security.

The latter's a catch-all excuse to authorize unlimited spying. Parents, not government, should handle their children's online usage. Alleged online crimes aren't defined, and no one ever died or experienced bodily harm through cyberspace.

Free's Action Fund Policy Director Matt Wood called CISPA "a dangerous piece of legislation and it’s worrisome that the House has passed such an overreaching bill."

"The bill still lacks effective oversight and accountability for companies and government agencies collecting massive amounts of our personal data. It would curtail Internet openness and freedom by stripping away crucial privacy protections, and without providing any guarantee of protection for critical infrastructure."

"If the Senate chooses to move forward with cybersecurity legislation, we urge senators to make the changes necessary to protect civil liberties and Internet freedom."

CISPA's little changed from its original form. It lets government and companies bypass existing laws, access whatever they wish, filter content, and potentially shut down online access for cybersecurity or national security reasons.

Enactment assures abuse. Telecommunication companies could monitor personal/privileged content. Vague language permits virtually anything. Privacy and First Amendment rights will be further eroded en route to destroying them altogether.

Freedoms now taken for granted will disappear. Any site, blog, or personal content could be called a cyber threat. The current Senate version differs little from the House bill. It states:

"(C)ybersecurity threat means any action that may result in unauthorized access to, exfiltration of, manipulation of, or impairment to the integrity, confidentiality, or availability of an information system or information that is stored on, processed by, or transiting an information system."

A "cybersecurity threat indicator" is defined in hugely disjunctive vague scenarios. They include, for example, "a method of defeating a technical (or operational) control." Merely using "a proxy or anonymization service" to access sites could be called a "cybersecurity threat indicator."

So could using cryptography to protect personal communications or be able to access systems securely. Nearly anything could be called a threat. Everyone is vulnerable for any reason.

Government and business may monitor online traffic and communications without Wiretap Act or other legal restrictions.

Vague definitions immunize government and business abusers. Whatever ways House and Senate bills reconcile differences, existing ones are so minor, a final version for Obama to sign will change little from what already passed.

Online users will lose out. So will everyone. Police state harshness will be hardened. America's already hugely repressive.

Police State America

Post-9/11 draconian legislation, executive orders, National and Homeland Security Presidential Directives, and other measures eroded personal freedoms gravely.

Little more remains to eliminating them altogether. Unprecedented presidential authority alone was freed from constitutional restraints. National emergencies and martial law can be declared without congressional approval.

Military commissions legislation scrapped habeas protections. FY 2007 NDAA annulled the 1807 Insurrection Act and 1878 Posse Comitatus Act. They prohibited federal or National Guard troops for law enforcement unless expressly authorized by Congress in times of a national emergency like an insurrection.

Continuity of Government (COG) authority effectively gives presidents and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials police state powers to rule extrajudicially without congressional authority. They need only declare a national emergency, whether or not justified.

Whistleblowers are an endangered species. So are First Amendment and other fundamental rights.

The USA Patriot Act enacted sweeping new powers. Bill of Rights Amendments were eroded or ended. First Amendment free expression and association rights were targeted. Belonging to an "undesirable group" was criminalized.

Fourth Amendment protections from unreasonable searches and seizures eroded. Personal privacy rights were lost.

First, Fourth and Sixth Amendment rights were violated. Dissent was targeted. Illegal searches and seizures were authorized. The right to counsel and due process were compromised.

Unchecked government surveillance powers to access personal records (including online), monitor financial transactions, student, medical and other information were authorized.

"Sneak and peak" searches permit "delayed notice" warrants, roving wiretaps, email tracking, and Internet and cell phone monitoring. Domestic spying became easier than ever.

For the first time, the crime of "domestic terrorism" was enacted. As a result, anti-war activists, global justice demonstrators, environmental and animal rights adherents, civil disobedience, and dissent of any kind may be included under its umbrella definition.

Under the Patriot Act's Section 806, with no hearing or notice, Washington may confiscate or freeze all foreign and domestic assets of any individual, entity, or organization accused of engaging in, planning, supporting, concealing, or perpetrating any act called domestic or international terrorism against America. Nonviolent protesters are included.

Other provisions are just as harsh. Using vague language, authorities have wide latitude to twist the law perversely. Anyone can be targeted for any reason. Anything can be called terrorism, whether or not true.

Democracy was largely ripped up by the roots and destroyed. Constitutional protections were trashed. Centralized power was enhanced. Personal freedoms eroded or ended.

In March 2006, Congress renewed most Patriot Act powers. In May 2011, three key provisions were extended for another four years. Little debate assured swift passage. As a result:

(1) Unlimited roving wiretaps continue unchecked.

(2) Section 215 pertains to alleged suspects. It authorizes government access to "any tangible item." They included financial records and transactions, student and medical records, phone conversations, emails, other Internet use, and whatever else Washington claims essential.

(3) Alleged suspect organizations and individuals can be surveilled, whether or not evidence links them to terrorism or complicity to commit it. In other words, police state powers to monitor anyone for any reason or none at all remain unchecked.

CISPA and whatever else becomes law further enhances unchecked police state powers. Democracy no longer exists.

How can it if constitutional, statute and international law protections no longer apply.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at

Also visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
CIA's & their Satanic Pigs are Enemies of Freedom Everywhere in The World CIA & their Satanic Pigs Enemy of Freedom Friday, May. 04, 2012 at 4:00 PM

Local News

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 1:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 12:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 12:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 4:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J10 11:58PM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M30 10:20PM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 12:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 1:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 2:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 3:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 2:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 1:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 1:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 4:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 1:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A26 10:37PM


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Illegal Russians Receiving Land and Homes in West Bank 2018 J22 11:24AM

Un monde de pauvreté J22 12:54AM

14 Disturbing Facts About Scott Gottlieb, Trump's FDA Head J20 10:47PM

Behind the scenes at fbi National Academy J20 2:47PM

Treasury Takes Aim at Shell Companies J20 11:18AM

Paraphysique de l'intelligence J20 9:08AM

Oklahoma GOP Senator Jim Inhofe's Bloody Record J20 4:01AM

Globalization: hope on the horizon despite Fake Liberals. J20 3:41AM

Sorry President Trump,Ted Cruz Texas Judicial System,is Worse Than Many Shithole Countries J19 4:49PM

The Shortwave Report 07/20/18 Listen Globally! J19 4:33PM

The System Question as a Survival Question J18 8:54PM

Nation's Largest Voting Machine Co., ESS, Admits Lying Re Having Installed Remote Control J18 11:55AM

Du pain et des jeux J18 9:53AM

Paraphysique de martyrologie J17 8:00AM

Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator J16 11:24AM

Democratic Socialists of America J14 4:57PM

Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's J14 4:18PM

Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento J14 12:54AM

FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution? J13 3:52PM

Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians J13 2:59PM

The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally! J12 4:36PM

Social Policy as Social Infrastructure J12 3:38AM

Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud J12 1:50AM

Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner.. J11 6:48PM

June 2018 Honduras coup update J11 3:35PM

Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support J11 1:40PM

New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients J11 10:14AM

Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation J11 1:31AM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy