"I was totally unprepared for today's bombshell revelations describing the NSA's efforts to defeat encryption. Not only does the worst possible hypothetical I discussed appear to be true, but it's true on a scale I couldn't even imagine. I'm no longer the crank. I wasn't even close to cranky enough. And since I never got a […]
"I thought it would be a fun exercise to describe PRISM based on information publicly available through the press, private companies, and the DNI. Specifically, how would this system look if we took all the statements made at face value? This might be a stretch, but it seems like a worthwhile exercise – not unlike a multivariate equation when one or mor […]
"Comprehensive immigration reform, along with the fiscal cliff and sequester, has recently dominated Washington. But observers have overlooked how calls for stronger immigration enforcement could undermine the rights of not only immigrants, but also US citizens." […]
Accurate surface observations, but I think Obama was always non-transformational at heart. He didn't lose his voice--he stopped throwing it.. -- "Transformational" leadership engages followers in the risky and often exhilarating work of changing the world, work that often changes the activists themselves. Its sources are shared values that bec […]
" ignorance of the history of assassination policy runs right through today, with the repetition of another myth: That President Obama’s extrajudicial drone-assassinations of American citizens is "unprecedented" and "radical" and that "not even George Bush targeted American citizens." The truth is a lot worse and a lot more […]
"Starting with results of the Nazi elimination of diagnosed schizophrenics, Levine re-examines the evidence for the heritability of mental illness and offers some suggestions about Western civilization and our shared humanity. If a nation murdered and sterilized an estimated 73 percent to 100 percent of its diagnosed schizophrenics, yet a generation lat […]
"The working conditions of college faculty are ultimately the learning conditions for college students. If you got here because you love what you do—or even if you are just mildly happy to have a decent job—you owe it to your colleagues, to your profession, to your students, and even to yourself to try to see to it that each and every one of us can cond […]
"elderly households tend to have lower incomes and lower expenditures than younger households, and that more of their purchases are for needs that cannot be met by switching to products and services in unrelated categories. That indicates that they do not have the same flexibility as younger households to respond to price changes while still maintaining […]
Expert witness for the defense demolishes case against the young Internet activist and prodigy who took his life earlier this weekend: "Aaron Swartz was not the super hacker breathlessly described in the Government’s indictment and forensic reports, and his actions did not pose a real danger to JSTOR, MIT or the public. He was an intelligent young man w […]
“We’re here today to talk about what happened with the FBI raids, what our rights are, and how we can respond.”
–Kit Bonson, Washington Peace Center*
“…fourteen of them were subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury, they stood in solidarity with each other, and every single one of them refused to testify before the grand jury, which is a major – and to me, inspiring – story. However, the prosecutors have come back and said that they are going to reissue the subpoenas to some of those activists.”
– Sue Udry, Defending Dissent Foundation
“…the surveillance society that we have in this country is collecting 1.7 billion records and communications a day. … When you get to 1.7 billion, that’s not about the government going to a judge and saying “I have a suspected terrorist, I’d like to read his emails,” that’s about our government turning its extraordinary computer powers loose on the American people.”
– Michelle Richardson, ACLU
“…Every time you hear another story it’s more shocking than the last time. Each group is never really suspected of doing anything wrong, it’s considered sort of preventive or preemptive spying. So whether it’s happening again I couldn’t give you good advice about, whether it’s not or what even to do to prevent it. That’s really the chilling effect that it has: you want to be open, you want to have public meetings, you want to be able to organize but you’re prevented from doing so by the fear that you are being infiltrated…”
– Michelle Richardson, ACLU
“If you come away with anything from this training… one: cops lie and the second lesson I’d like people to come away with is keep your mouth shut.”
– John Hardenbergh, National Lawyers Guild
“We really wanted to make sure that people didn’t leave today feeling completely fearful and demoralized. Because the object of learning about the FBI’s — and I would dare say other agencies’ — surveillance and infiltration is not to… shut people down and to make you all go home and hide under your bed. The object is to figure out a way to work with this knowledge and to make sure our movements are ever growing and ever stronger.”
– Nadine Bloch
[...] video of the first panel is shown below. This video and two more like it are displayed on an “11/6 forum videos” page together with links to news items, analyses, and documents referred to by [...]
Don’t Think For A Moment—You Can Talk To The FBI Off The Record.
If you are questioned by the FBI and (truthfully) answer “No” to a question, you might be charged for making a false statement. For example, if someone (unbeknownst to you) proposed committing an act of violence or other crime at an activist meeting you attended—then later the FBI questions you about having knowledge of that proposal, by answering “No” the FBI can charge you with providing a false or misleading answer or lying to a federal agent under 18U.S.C. § 1001. This law is a trap for the innocent, because how can you prove you didn’t know something? Even answering, “yes” under this law can be hazardous.
Consider the U.S. Supreme Case BROGAN v. UNITED STATES No. 96—1579. Argued December 2, 1997 Decided January 26, 1998: James Brogan was indicted on federal bribery charges and for making a “false statement” within the jurisdiction of a (federal agency) in violation of 18U.S.C. § 1001.
Note under 18U.S.C. § 1001, that any person questioned by the FBI or other Federal Agency can be imprisoned up to 5-years and fined $10,000 for every “misleading or false answer”; that includes any false or misleading statement made to the FBI when questioned about a crime you did not commit or crime the Government can’t prove you did.
Under BROGAN v. UNITED STATES, Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg noted that when the FBI questions someone about an “old crime” after the Statute of Limitations past for criminal prosecution, and the questioned person denies having committed the crime, that their fresh denial may involuntarily waive their right to assert in their defense—the statute of limitations has past for criminal prosecution e.g., for a 20-year old crime.
Consequently if you are ever questioned by the FBI or other federal agency or by a local cop, which some have been federally deputized, about a past crime or about having knowledge of anything illegal happening in the future, the smart thing to do is remain silent and if necessary state to the FBI or other law enforcement “Before I answer any of your questions I first need the benefit of an attorney.” Keep in mind there is no such thing as talking to an FBI Agent or any federal agency off the record. Consider the case of James Brogan. The FBI came by Brogan’s office and gave the appearance their visit was informal, then after asking a few questions indicted Brogan for lying to the FBI. Below is a summary of the U.S. Supreme Court decision: BROGAN v. UNITED STATES No. 96—1579 and Website access to learn more about the Brogan Case and 18 U.S.C. § 1001.
(SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES BROGAN v. UNITED STATES CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE SECOND CIRCUIT No. 96—1579.)
Argued December 2, 1997–Decided January 26, 1998 Petitioner falsely answered “no” when federal agents asked him whether he had received any cash or gifts from a company whose employees were represented by the union in which he was an officer. He was indicted on federal bribery charges and for making a false statement within the jurisdiction of a federal agency in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1001. A jury in the District Court found Brogan guilty.
The Second Circuit affirmed, categorically rejecting Brogan’s request to adopt the so-called “exculpatory no” doctrine, which excludes from §1001’s scope false statements that consist of the mere denial of wrongdoing. Held: There is no exception to §1001 criminal liability for a false statement consisting merely of an “Exculpatory No.” Although many Court of Appeals decisions have embraced the “Exculpatory No” doctrine, it is not supported by §1001’s plain language. By its terms, §1001 covers “any” false statement–that is, a false statement “of whatever kind,” United States v. Gonzales, 520 U.S. ___, including the use of the word “no” in response to a question. Petitioner’s argument that §1001 does not criminalize simple denials of guilt proceeds from two mistaken premises: that the statute criminalizes only those statements that “pervert governmental functions,” and that simple denials of guilt do not do so.
United States v. Gilliland, 312 U.S. 86, 93, distinguished. His argument that a literal reading of §1001 violates the “spirit” of the Fifth Amendment is rejected because the Fifth Amendment does not confer a privilege to lie. E.g., United States v. Apfelbaum, 445 U.S. 115, 117.
Brogan’s final argument that the “exculpatory no” doctrine is necessary to eliminate the grave risk that §1001 will be abused by overzealous prosecutors seeking to “pile on” offenses is not supported by the evidence and should, in any event, be addressed to Congress.
Pp. 2—8. 96 F.3d 35, affirmed. Scalia, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Rehnquist, C. J., and O’Connor, Kennedy, and Thomas, JJ., joined, and in which Souter, J., joined in part. Souter, J., filed a statement concurring in part and concurring in the judgment. Ginsburg, J., filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, in which Souter, J., joined. Stevens, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which Breyer, J., joined.
[...] To learn more about the FBI raids, visit the online version of a DC Civil Liberties Coalition teach in about the September 24 raids, stopfbi.net, or the Defending Dissent Foundation. To learn more about Bradley Manning and the [...]
[...] about them here). Ms. Bonson also explained how this forum returns to MCCRC’s origins in a 2010 teach-in prompted by raids and grand jury harassment of peace and social justice activists in Chicago and [...]
[...] November 10, 2010 teach-in: videos and resources about the September 24 2010 FBI raids, the threat of grand juries, and the Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project ruling broadening the definition of “material support.” [...]