surveillance state Archives -

Pelosi, Hoyer and Schiff Keep Trying to Give Trump More Spying Powers?


Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Majority Steny Hoyer in the Oval Office on Wednesday, May 13, 2009

CommonDreams is reporting: “Pelosi Accused of ‘Trying to Do an End-Run Around Her Own Party’ by Sending Spy Powers Bill to Conference.”

Trevor Timm, executive director of Freedom of the Press Foundation, on Thursday wrote the piece “Congress Is Alarmingly Close to Handing Trump Dangerous Spying Powers: And Adam Schiff, of all people, is the one giving it to him.”

Reporter Dell Camron writes: “Democratic leaders are doing anything and everything they can to prevent privacy protections from being added to FISA. People need to be asking themselves why this is happening. What do Pelosi/Hoyer/Schiff have to gain by defending warrantless surveillance?”

Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer said: “At the request of the Speaker of the House, I am withdrawing consideration of the FISA Act. The two-thirds of the Republican party that voted for this bill in March have indicated they are going to vote against it now. I am told they are doing so at the request of the President. I believe this to be against the security interest of the United States and the safety of the American people.”

Politico reports: “Effort to renew FISA crumbles: It was a rare legislative setback for Pelosi, and Trump rejoiced.”

EVAN GREER, evan at, @fightfortheftr

Greer is deputy director of Fight for the Future. She tweeted Thursday: “I just want to be extremely clear that right now Nancy Pelosi the so-called leader of ‘The Resistance’ is actively trying to gut a bipartisan amendment that specifically protects journalists & religious groups from abusive surveillance, so she can reauthorize FISA & Patriot Act.”

See statement by the group Demand Progress.

Is Sentencing of Anonymous Hacktivist Part of “State’s Plan to Criminalize Democratic Dissent”?

Share Guardian reports: “Jeremy Hammond, the Anonymous hacktivist who released millions of emails relating to the private intelligence firm Stratfor, has denounced his prosecution and lengthy prison sentence as a ‘vengeful, spiteful act’ designed to put a chill on politically-motivated hacking.

“Hammond was sentenced on Friday at federal court in Manhattan to the maximum 10 years in jail, plus three years supervised release.”

KEVIN GOSZTOLA, kevin.gosztola at, @kgosztola
Gosztola was at Hammond’s sentencing today. He writes “The Dissenter” blog for Firedoglake and is co-author of the book Truth & Consequences: The U.S. vs. Private Manning.

He said today: “The judge in Jeremy Hammond’s sentencing seemed to adopt just about all of the government’s arguments in their sentencing memo to the court. She did not find it reasonable to consider that Hammond’s acts were civil disobedience as argued by his lawyers

“It appears that what happened in this case is that the judge did not want to distinguish between good hacking and bad hacking in the same way that judges have not wanted to distinguish between good leaking and bad leaking.

“What is clear going forward is that there is no legal avenue for hacktivists to argue that what they are doing is public service and not intended to harm other people.”

Gosztola recently wrote: “Jeremy Hammond worked with Anonymous to hack into Stratfor and release information from the firm. The material was eventually published by WikiLeaks.

“While uncharged, he also admitted in a statement after he pled guilty to one count of violating the CFAA [Computer Fraud and Abuse Act], that he had hacked into other websites including ‘military and police equipment suppliers, private intelligence and information security firms, and law enforcement agencies.’ He said he did this because he believed ‘people have a right to know what governments and corporations are doing behind closed doors.’ …

“The damage to Stratfor was insurmountable for the firm, but it should not go unmentioned that the FBI had an informant, Hector Xavier Monsegur (‘Sabu’), involved in the operation to go into Stratfor’s network and obtain files for release. FBI officials claim they did not sit idly by and let this operation unfold as Stratfor was infiltrated, but they did apparently instruct or authorize Monsegur to have all the data obtained from the hack placed on one of the FBI’s own computers. …

“Ahead of Hammond’s sentencing, Hammond’s lawyers collected 265 letters of support that call for a ‘sentence of time-served.’ They were written by friends, family, academics, journalists, individuals from the tech community and notable whistleblowers.

“Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg said in a letter, ‘I believe the actions taken by Jeremy Hammond need to be viewed in a context that considers the profound consequences of private surveillance of political activists in the United States.'”

Also, see recent interview with Chris Hedges on The Real News: “Hedges: Jeremy Hammond Exposed State’s Plan to Criminalize Democratic Dissent.”