imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

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


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org 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

www.indymedia.org 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

Obama Wants Whistleblowers Silenced

by Stephen Lendman Wednesday, Jun. 05, 2013 at 9:05 PM
lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net

police state

Obama Wants Whistleblowers Silenced

by Stephen Lendman

Previous articles discussed his war on whistleblowers, free expression and dissent.

Sibel Edmonds founded the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition (NSWBC). She did so to aid "national security whistleblowers through a variety of methods."

The ACLU called her "the most gagged person in the history of the United States."

Since 1977, the Government Accountability Project (GAP) calls itself "the nation's leading whistleblower protection and advocacy organization."

"What is a Whistleblower," it asks?

Anyone "who discloses information that (he or she) reasonably believes is evidence of illegality, gross waste or fraud, mismanagement, abuse of power, general wrongdoing, or a substantial and specific danger to public health and safety."

"Typically, whistleblowers speak out to parties that can influence and rectify the situation."

"These parties include the media, organizational managers, hotlines, or Congressional members/staff, to name a few."

On April 1, activist lawyers launched the Whistleblowers Defense League (WDL). Founding members include Jay Leiderman, Dennis Roberts, and Jason Flores-Williams.

Center for Constitutional Rights President Emeritus Michael Ratner praised their initiative, saying:

"Every effort that focuses on the defense of whistleblowers, internet free speech activists, publishers and others persecuted by the US government is to be applauded."

"This group joins many other(s) who are already defending those accused of shining light on the dark secrets of government and corporations.”

A WDL announcement said:

"We have entered a dangerous time in America. The FBI and Department of Justice are using harassment and prosecution as a tool to chill and silence journalism, on-line activism and dissent."

Co-founder Jay Leiberman stressed that "People are being subpoenaed, indicted and incarcerated for simply exploring the truth."

"The government has amended the constitution with fear."

"In response, a nation-wide group of expert criminal defense attorneys have formed the Whistleblower Defense League to defend and encourage those willing to investigate and speak out against the corporate and political forces threatening our democracy."

Candidate Obama promised transparency, accountability, and reform. President Obama targeted more whistleblowers than all his predecessors combined.

He usurped diktat powers to do so. He prioritizes police state harshness. On January 25, he issued a barely noticed memorandum titled:

"Presidential Memorandum - Rulemaking Concerning the Standards for Designating Positions in the Competitive Service as National Security Sensitive and Related Matters"

It pertains to proposed "amended regulations contained in the Office of Personnel Management's notice of proposed rulemaking in 75 Fed. Reg. 77783 (December 14, 2010),"

Its purpose "is to clarify the requirements and procedures agencies should observe when designating national security positions as required under EO 10450, Security Requirements for Government Employment."

National security positions are defined as "any position(s) in a department or agency, the occupant of which could bring about, by virtue of the nature of the position, a material adverse effect on the national security."

"The purpose of the revisions is to clarify the categories of positions which, by virtue of the nature of their duties, have the potential to bring about a material adverse impact on the national security, whether or not the positions require access to classified information."

Another purpose is to properly designate each position with regard to public trust and national security considerations.

Both are necessary, it says, "for determining appropriate investigative requirements." Clarification is needed to decide when they're required.

At issue is establishing standards to give federal officials authorization to fire employees without appeal. They can be designated ineligible to hole "noncritical sensitive" jobs for any reason or none at all.

They can be prosecuted for disclosing information the public has a right to know. Doing so can be called compromising national security.

Longstanding civil service law doesn't matter. It's fundamental for protecting whistleblower rights. One of the first laws enacted was the 1863 United False Claims Act. It targeted persons and federal contractors defrauding the government.

The 1978 Civil Service Reform Act (CSRA) abolished the Civil Service Commission. Three new agencies replaced it: the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), and the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA).

OPM advises executive branch agencies. It issues human resources regulations.

FLRA's responsible for federal employee rights. It focuses on issues related to collective bargaining.

MSPB handles federal employee appeals. It does so with regard to discipline, discrimination and dismissals.

CSRA prohibits discrimination based on marital status, race, religion, political activity or affiliation. Affected employees may petition the Office of Special Counsel.

The 1989 Whistleblower Protection Act protects federal employees who report misconduct. Federal agencies are prohibited from retaliating against those who do so.

Whistleblowers may report law or regulatory violations, gross mismanagement, waste, fraud and/or abuse, or acts endangering public health or safety.

The Office of Special Council is empowered to investigate whistleblower complaints.

The Merit Systems Protection Board adjudicates them.

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is the only judicial body authorized to hear whistleblower case appeals. Since the Whistleblower Protection Act was revised in 1994, it ruled on 203 cases. Only three times did whistleblowers prevail.

At least 18 federal statutes protect private sector whistleblowers. They fall short of full protection. What corporations want they get.

They write legislation Congress passes. Sarbanes-Oxley, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, and Dodd-Frank are three of many examples.

On November 27, 2012, the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (WPEA) became law.

Government Accountability Project Legal Director Tom Devine said:

"This reform took 13 years to pass because it can make so much difference against fraud, waste and abuse."

"Government managers at all levels made pleas and repeatedly blocked the bill through procedural sabotage."

"But once there were no more secret 'holds,' the WPEA passed unanimously, because no politician in a free society can openly oppose freedom of speech."

Reforms enacted protect federal employees from reprisal for:

• disclosing misconduct;

• revealing it to co-workers or supervisors;

• disclosing policy decision consequences; or

• doing any or all of the above in relation to their position or duties.

Obama signed the legislation into law. He's targeted whistleblowers more aggressively than all his predecessors combined. He circumvented or ignored legal provisions.

His January 25 memorandum makes it easier to do so. Whistleblower advocacy groups expressed concern.

During Obama's first term, he targeted record numbers of government employees, journalists and others.

He did so on national security grounds. Prosecutions were for allegedly leaking classified information. True or false doesn't matter.

At issue is revealing information Washington wants kept secret. Anyone challenging government authority is vulnerable. So are supporters of right over wrong.

A Final Comment

On May 24, The Government Accountability Project headlined "GAP Praises Long-Overdue Overhaul of Military Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2013 (MMPEA)."

On February 14, HR 704: Military Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act was introduced. It was sent to committee. No further action was taken.

On May 24, Senator Mark Warner (D. VA) introduced a companion bill. It falls short of what's needed. It relates to sexual assaults. They're one of many abuses needing addressing and redress.

GAP Legal Director Tom Devine said:

"Sexual assaults in the military continue for the same reasons as other human rights violations - secrecy coupled with weak or nonexistent rights to challenge abuses of power."

"For 25 years, the Military Whistleblower Protection Act has been so weak that GAP has advised soldiers not to file complaints under it."

"This legislation would replace token rights with those equivalent to the civil service Whistleblower Protection Act."

Enactment will be a step in the right direction. Doing so won’t protect whistleblower rights.

Stronger measures with teeth are needed. Everyone deserves them. Fundamental freedoms are on the line. They're disappearing in plain sight.

Vitally important whistleblower rights alone are threatened. Legislation protecting them falls short of what's needed. Obama wants laws entirely circumvented.

His January 25 memorandum addresses establishing new standards. He wants them overriding existing protections. He claims his mandate applies solely to positions deemed "sensitive."

Proposed rules are vague. They provide wiggle room to target anyone for any reason or none at all. So-called "sensitive" positions include any potentially having "a material adverse impact" on national security.

Saying so is in the eye of the beholder. Virtually all government employees are vulnerable. So are journalists, military personnel, activists and others. First Amendment rights are threatened.

Anyone exposing government or military wrongdoing can be fired, fined, prosecuted, court martialed, and/or imprisoned.

Doing so reflects police state justice. America's on a fast track toward institutionalizing it. It could arrive full-blown any time. Any pretext real or invented could justify it. Rogue states govern that way.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour

http://www.dailycensored.com/obama-wants-all-whistleblowers-silenced/

Report this post as:

LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE

Local News

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

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

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

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

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

EPA Head Scott Pruitt: Of Cages And Sirens A06 2:15PM

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