A followup Washington Post article: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08...
He also did an IAmA post on reddit, which has a lot of information: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/fjfby/iama_director_of...
(Since reddit is down right now, here's the cached Google version: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache%3Ahttp%...)
Edit: Wanted to add a link to a later followup post he made on Reddit, talking about his plans to start a "Non-profit ISP and Teleco": http://www.reddit.com/r/reddit.com/comments/fkndx/update_nat...
(And the Google cached version: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache%3Ahttp%...)
Edit: And in case people are curious about the actual court case: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doe_v._Ashcroft
Thanks for the additional info, though: having the follow-up links makes me less sad I posted it.
Edit: I see you added the link. This article, for everyone else's info, was done Mar 23, 07 d:D
Not saying he personally directed the FBI to increase, just saying it has and nothing has stopped it.
But he has personally sought to expand NSL powers.
And Manning is in serious, serious trouble under Obama, I will be amazed if he gets only life, because they purposely just added an "aiding the enemy" charge which carries a death sentence:
I also think Senator Obama would be completely freaking out at President Obama.
While that may be true, you don't hear it nearly as much when a Repub or Tory is in the executive office.
Well, that's a textbook example of confirmation bias. There was an awful lot of news about NSLs & friends when GW Bush was in office. He signed the damn Patriot Act!
That said, this is all besides the point. In my opinion it is pretty much irrelevant to focus on individual actors or even political parties when thinking about the failings of government. We are not talking about a 10-man sports team. We are talking about a system, a giant system of processes and incentives, the outcome of which is our experience of government.
Favouring or disfavouring individuals is like a gambler constantly choosing his "lucky" pokey machine. Or blaming/acclaiming a single soldier for the outcome of a war. In fact, it is programming or process which determines both these things. We have to start thinking about the larger picture.
I was unclear. I meant that you didn't hear the "it's how the system works" defense/excuse offered above very often. Instead you heard "those evil Repubs/Bush", and, as you point out, it got a lot of play.
Now that Obama is in office, these things don't get nearly as much play. What little there is is a combination of "that evil Obama" and the above defense.
Let's say I own a business. Every week, I get two dozen letters purporting to be from the FBI requesting information on my customers. Some of the requests are clearly ridiculous; others might be genuine. If they are genuine, I'm forbidden from discussing them over the phone; the requests aren't a matter of public record, so I can't look them up; I don't have a secure fax, I run an internet company. I could tell my lawyer about it, but he'd be subject to the same restrictions as me.
My only options are either to submit an individual request for verification for each letter by delivery service, or comply with every request I receive, deluging the FBI with frivolous documents. Either way, thousands of companies attempting to comply with dozens of such requests every week and the secret police system would quickly grind to a halt.
To be followed shortly by a lengthy prison sentence — if they're lucky — for anyone participating in the fabrication of government documents, of course. Still, it's a fascinating prospect.
1 - http://www.google.com/search?q=fbi+ddos+anonymous+warrant
2 - http://boingboing.net/2008/10/23/howto-read-the-secre.html
"...nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself..."
Technically speaking, you are only allowed to refuse to answer a question if you believe that answering will incriminate yourself.
Although, if I were in this situation, I would ask to speak with the judge privately.
Saying "I can't answer that" is effectively disclosing that you are gagged, which is not allowed.
It's a totally insane prospect.
Assuming this even legal, I wonder if it would also be legal to have a warrant canary for each user.
Failing to post the canary message would cause people to know that you received an NSL. This is the definition of "disclosure."
If you can find an instance of such a scheme being tested in court, I'd love to see it though.
This is not a situation where someone's speech can be said definitely to cause harm to someone. Therefore the first amendment guarantees you will not be criminally prosecuted for it, though the government does not care.
Disclosing confidential information is not protected by the first amendment because it is a civil matter, not a criminal one. The federal government could (within the bounds of the constitution) bring a civil case against someone who violates the gag order, but it would be an uphill battle for them because the person violating the order did not sign a contract agreeing to keep quiet.
I haven't read any of the legal decisions; they're long, and I'm not a lawyer, but I see a big hole in the argument you're making. In every non-pathological case I can think of, a person receiving confidential information that they'll be prohibited from disclosing agrees to the confidentiality first. You can't send me an unsolicited letter containing information you want kept confidential and sue or jail me if I disclose that information, but the FBI can (pending the outcome of their appeal of the ruling that says they can't).
We had been meticulous in our care to not violate the gag in any way shape or form. We didn't want to jeopardize the case, and obviously didn't want to run into any legal trouble.
I read this as him saying he didn't want any issues raised that might distract from his lawsuit. That doesn't necessarily mean that the approach I proposed wouldn't be legal. A law that compels a person to lie is a bit more absurd than one that compels a person not to talk about something. It's pretty common to hear "I can neither confirm nor deny..." from government officials who work with secret stuff. I think chances are pretty good that would work for civilians under gag orders as well.
It's a great opportunity to introduce reforms -- including NSL's and gag orders. EFF has more at https://secure.eff.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=Us...
Is it worded such that the whole group of people would be gagged? There's got to be some interesting way to circumvent it.
Have you ever sent a strongly worded letter to an elected official? Yes No
"The FBI has not served this library a national security letter. Please watch for removal of this sign."
You probably don't want to read this then: http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/03/warrantless-eavesdr...
It’s easy to forget these days, but former President George W. Bush’s illegal warrantless surveillance program was never halted by Congress, nor by the Obama administration. It was merely legalized in a 2008 law called the FISA Amendments Act. That means the surveillance of Americans’ international phone calls and internet use — complete with secret rooms in AT&T data centers around the country — is likely still ongoing.
Now you could argue this is when a business transitions into a government-like entity, but that's another thread.
Capitalist systems are the ones with the LEAST amount of involvement between government and business. Yes, those relationships are often still too strong and even unethical, but at least they're not part of the government's basic mandate.
And I didn't seem to imply anything about fascists not being good at making money and owning property.