Among the recent revelations about the NSA was the PRISM program, which tech companies have denied participating in. According to a New York Times report, one of those companies, Yahoo, fought back in 2008 against the government requests on the grounds that it would be unconstitutional — but failed. Thus, the company became part of the program. “The government had sought help in spying on certain foreign users, without a warrant,
I understand why companies would comply with the order to turn over whatever the government demands, but what is bad is that for years and years they have been adding features that encourage users to give more and more information and also to express opinions etc. If they cannot legally divulge what the government is doing, they have a responsibility to quietly stop gathering the information and stop luring people into providing information that can be used against them for political purposes, even if it means they don´t offer features that would improve their business.
“The government had sought help in spying on certain foreign users, without a warrant, and Yahoo had refused,..."
The problem is that tiny step from spying on them, to spying on everyone!
“Notwithstanding the parade of horribles trotted out by the petitioner, it has presented no evidence of any actual harm, any egregious risk of error, or any broad potential for abuse,” the court said, adding that the government’s “efforts to protect national security should not be frustrated by the courts.”
On Monday, President Barack Obama’s speech before a crowd of supporters in San Francisco was interrupted when a heckler erupted with demands that the president halt deportations of illegal immigrants via executive order. Politifact took on the heckler’s claims on Tuesday with a thorough audit of his statements. “You have a power to stop deportation for all undocumented immigrants in this country,” declared the heckler who has since been identified as 24-year-old Ju Hong of South Korea.
The Obama administration, in what’s been called an egregious slap in the face to the Vatican, has moved to shut down the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See — a free-standing facility — and relocate offices onto the grounds of the larger American Embassy in Italy. The new offices will be in a separate building on the property, Breitbart reported. And while U.S. officials are touting the relocation as a security measure that’s a cautionary reaction to last year’s attacks on America´s facility in Benghazi, several former American envoys are raising the red flag. It’s a “massive downgrade of U.S.-Vatican ties,” said
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has agreed to referee another dispute over President Barack Obama’s health care law, whether businesses can use religious objections to escape a requirement to cover birth control for employees. The justices said Tuesday they will take up an issue that has divided the lower courts in the face of roughly 40 lawsuits from for-profit companies asking to be spared from having to cover some or all forms of contraception.
BEIJING — U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke, who oversaw the handling of potential crises over the flights to U.S. diplomatic missions by a persecuted legal activist and a high-profile police chief, said Wednesday he will step down early next year. Locke, the first Chinese-American to hold the post, said he informed President Barack Obama earlier this month of his decision to rejoin his family in Seattle.
AMSTERDAM/UNITED NATIONS - Syria´s chemical weapons could be processed and destroyed out at sea, say sources familiar with discussions at the international body in charge of eliminating the toxic arsenal. Four days after Albania rejected a U.S. request that it host a weapons decommissioning plant, Western diplomats and an official of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons at The Hague told Reuters the OPCW was studying whether it might carry out the work at sea, on a ship or offshore rig. Confirming the discussion, the OPCW official stressed there had been no decision: "The only thing known at this time
New Jersey may have Snooki and an unbearable stench, but Gov. Chris Christie is encouraging New Yorkers to move there because of something his state doesn’t have — Bill de Blasio. The garrulous Garden State governor said during a speech to The Wall Street Journal CEO Council Monday that New York is going in the “wrong direction” — especially since de Blasio’s election as mayor — and that residents should consider a change. “You see taxes being increased there,” Christie said. “You have a new mayor in New York who is aggressively talking about increasing taxes in New York City. “While I feel
Virginia state Sen. R. Creigh Deeds, Bath Democrat, was stabbed in his home Tueday morning and his son Gus died from a gunshot wound, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. Mr. Deeds is in critical condition at the University of Virginia Medical Center and authorities are trying to determine the sequence of events, the paper reported. He unsuccessfully for governor of Virginia in 2009.
The Republican Party stands for nothing. As Barack Obama threatens to fumble away his presidency along with the Democratic Party´s reasons for existence – championing an active, efficient government—the GOP lurches into the leadership breach with … zilch. Rather than be the party of solutions in a gridlocked capital, appealing to a leadership-starved public, the GOP is the party of obstruction, ensuring that its putrid approval ratings nose dive apace with Obama´s. The country needs sensible immigration reform that brings 11 million or so undocumented residents out of the shadows. No, says the GOP. The country needs to tame a massive debt that
The millions of health coverage cancellation notices that have gone out in recent weeks have thoroughly debunked President Obama´s pledge that if Americans like their health care coverage, they can keep it. The president, along with the many other Democrats who made the same promise, is now paying a political price for his words. But the keep-your-coverage promise was just part of the Obamacare sales job. Obama, then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and top Democrats made all sorts of claims in their effort to convince a skeptical public to accept a complicated, far-reaching national health care scheme.
LOS ANGELES — Advice for the power players at Hollywood’s coming round of black-tie galas: Don’t leave your seat to table-hop.Your chair might be gone when you get back. Even as the movie awards season accelerates here, studio chiefs and major producers have been fretting less about Oscars than about job security. A rolling realignment has knocked out top executives, broken apart old alliances and shattered assumptions about corporate loyalties and the industry’s pecking order. Is Jeff Robinov, edged aside in June as president of the Warner Brothers Motion Picture Group, now headed toward Sony Pictures, as Hollywood’s busy trade press has
With the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy´s (JFK) assassination drawing near, various aspects of his life and presidency are being recounted. Among these, two aspects that are not getting the attention they deserve are his lifetime membership in the NRA and his defense of the Second Amendment. According to the Washington Post, JFK was one of eight U.S. presidents to "have been lifetime members [of the NRA]." The others were "Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Dwight D. Eisenhower... Richard M. Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush." Kennedy stands out as the only Democrat on that list. In
Former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow, who was born in the Philippines while his parents served as missionaries, is stepping up to help victims in the country devastated by Typhoon Haiyan. The Tim Tebow Foundation has activated a donation link so people can help those in need. Mr. Tebow has also made the Philippines one of the primary beneficiaries of his outreach programs, First Coast News reported. Currently his foundation is working with CURE International to build an orthopedic children’s hospital in Davao City set to open next year. The hospital is one of the few places that survived the storm, but it
Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin are starting to sour on the new pope. In response to Pope Francis’ first Apostolic Exhortation, in which the pontiff denounced “trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world,” these two paragons of the far right – both of whom regularly invoke the teachings of Jesus to bolster their own political views – have suddenly turned their backs on the man whose actual job description is to speak for Jesus. Sarah Palin complained that Pope Francis sounded “kind
President Obama requested Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu take a “breather” from his harsh criticism of the U.S. strategy regarding Iran during a call betwee the two leaders, The Washington Post reported on Thursday. The request came as the administration girds up for a push in the next six months to reach a final settlement on Iran´s nuclear program. The president reportedly urged Netanyahu to tone down his rhetoric for the sake of diplomacy and urged him to dispatch officials to Washington who could help negotiate a resolution agreeable to both countries. The president called Netanyahu last Sunday, promising to
In 1947, Sen. Harley Kilgore (D-W.Va.) condemned a proposed constitutional amendment that would restrict presidents to two terms. “The executive’s effectiveness will be seriously impaired,” Kilgore argued on the Senate floor, “ as no one will obey and respect him if he knows that the executive cannot run again.” I’ve been thinking about Kilgore’s comments as I watch President Obama, whose approval rating has dipped to 37?percent in CBS News polling — the lowest ever for him — during the troubled rollout of his health-care reform. Many of Obama’s fellow Democrats have distanced themselves from the reform and from the president.
Cher told her fans on Wednesday that she does not celebrate Thanksgiving. In fact, she appears to deplore the American holiday, calling in the “beginning of a great crime.” Cher said that the American settlers were guilty of taking land from native Americans who had no concept of property ownership and also intentionally infected them with smallpox. “You don’t celebrate the holiday I thought?” a fan asked Cher. “I DON’T,” Cher replied emphatically. She said that, to her, Thanksgiving is a day to see family, eat food together and watch a movie. “Not 2 celebrate the beginning of a GREAT Crime.” When asked
The hits to President Obama´s popularity, prompted by the botched HealthCare.gov rollout, are simply a natural fluctuation every commander-in-chief faces, Obama told interviewer Barbara Walters in an interview aired Friday. "If you remember, I´ve gone up and down pretty consistently throughout," Obama said in the ABC interview on Friday. "But the good thing about when you´re down is that usually you´ve got nowhere to go but up." "I got re-elected in part because people did think I was trustworthy and they knew I was working on their behalf," Obama said in the network´s exclusive. A CNN Poll of Polls complied
For all the gnashing of teeth over the lack of comity and civility in Washington, the real problem is not etiquette but the breakdown of political norms, legislative and constitutional. Such as the one just spectacularly blown up in the Senate. To get three judges onto a coveted circuit court, frustrated Democrats abolished the filibuster for executive appointments and (non-Supreme Court) judicial nominations. The problem is not the change itself. It’s fine that a president staffing his administration should need 51 votes rather than 60. Doing so for judicial appointments, which are for life, is a bit dicier. Nonetheless, for
The human species began as the hybrid offspring of a male pig and a female chimpanzee, a leading geneticist has suggested. The startling claim has been made by Eugene McCarthy, of the University of Georgia, who is also one of the worlds leading authorities on hybridisation in animals. He points out that while humans have many features in common with chimps, we also have a large number of distinguishing characteristics not found in any other primates. Dr McCarthy says these divergent characteristics are most likely the result of a hybrid origin at some point far back in human evolutionary history. What´s more, he suggests,
Four more years. 10 trillion more dollars in debt. And by the end of it, we’ll have a nuclear war in the Middle East and mandates forcing you to buy everything from electric cars to Michelle Obama’s trademark Soy and Asphalt pie. The motives behind the Washington Post op-ed argument are… revealing. I watch President Obama, whose approval rating has dipped to 37?percent in CBS News polling — the lowest ever for him — during the troubled rollout of his health-care reform. Many of Obama’s fellow Democrats have distanced themselves from the reform and from the president. Even former president Bill Clinton
For Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell, enough was enough. The Senate´s top Republican had watched a Tea Party-driven government shutdown sink the GOP´s already-weak brand and jeopardize McConnell´s own chances of ever becoming majority leader. The solution, he concluded, was that the party´s so-called Establishment had to start fighting back against its most conservative wing. McConnell, an ardent Obamacare opponent, and other Republican pragmatists in Congress, supported the conservatives´ mission to defund Obamacare during budget negotiations, which led to the 16-day shutdown. But the pragmatists also accepted that their odds of success were virtually nil. Democrats ruled the Senate and White House, those
The Washington Examiner recently reported on an academic study on the 2008 presidential election entitled "The Palin Effect" that examined the effect of then Gov. Palin on the John McCain campaign. Its conclusions run counter to conventional wisdom. The cliché, advanced by the media and the now infamous HBO TV show "Game Change," was that Palin helped to cost McCain the election because of her "controversial" personality. In fact, typical of most vice presidential running mates, Palin had a marginal but largely positive effect on McCain´s standing with the voters. She certainly did not drive away independents and moderates, who along
He´s a proud family man already, but President Barack Obama will turn to his children when it comes to life after the White House. Sasha Obama could be the deciding factor in whether the first family stay in Washington once he leaves office in three years. In a taped interview with ABC News, the President said his now 12-year-old daughter ´will have a big vote in where we are´ because she will be a sophomore in high school. When Obama leaves office in January 2017 after two terms, eldest daughter Malia could be off in college. Both girls attend the exclusive Sidwell Friends School
Progressive talk radio needs a savior. Just a few dozen stations now carry liberal talkers, as key affiliates in cities with active left-wing politics are falling like dominoes, going dark or switching formats. Detroit’s progressive outlet shut down in January, along with Seattle’s liberal talk station, which changed to sports. And after last year’s election, Portland’s progressive talk station ended its political programming. With the political battlegrounds of 2014 and 2016 on the horizon, reducing the whopping imbalance between conservative radio, with its huge fan base, and the left has become more important than ever, according to those in