How does the government finance the surveillance that has been in the news lately? Privacy violation is such a tiny symptom. Governments seek to exert power and control over their citizens. This is made possible only by the collection of taxes and the coercive monopolization of public services, such as courts, army and police. There is no such thing as private property in a government society, despite our government's attempt to make us think there is. Surveillance and data-gathering has been going on as long as there have been governments, and will continue as long as there are governments. It is part and parcel of government's modus operandi to keep tabs on what we create and what we are doing. Read The Full Story .
The trial of a U.S. soldier accused of providing classified materials to WikiLeaks is unique for the size of the leak and also faces the unresolved cyber-age issue of whether Tweets and Web pages can be admitted as evidence.
Protesters showed up to a gun-rights rally in Erie, Pa., with their firearms out in the open—purposely defying a local ordinance that prohibits guns at city parks.
“We are American patriots, and we are a force to be reckoned with!” yelled Pastor George Cook of North Bangor, Pa. (350 miles away) at the Perry Square park gazebo Saturday, WSEE-TV reports. Read The Full Story
Ed Snowden beware: U.S. State Dept. has confirmed history of running covert abductions of Americans in Ecuador
As reported by the Associated Press, Edward Snowden managed to evade U.S. authorities and fly to Ecuador where he is apparently being granted political asylum.
U.S. District Court Strikes Down Tennessee Law Giving Two Major Parties Best Spot on Ballot; and Also Strikes Down Petition Requirement Again
On June 18, U.S. District Court Judge William J. Haynes ruled that Tennessee’s law, giving the two largest parties the best spots on the general election ballot, is unconstitutional. He also again struck down the law that requires newly-qualifying parties to submit 40,042 valid signatures (2.5% of the last gubernatorial vote).
Judge Haynes had struck down the number of signatures in the same case, but the Sixth Circuit had remanded the case back to him, and requested that he review the number of signatures again. The Sixth Circuit mentioned that in 1971, the U.S. Supreme Court had upheld Georgia’s petition requirement of 5% of the number of registered voters. In response, Judge Haynes reaffirmed his original decision, pointing out that Tennessee is obviously not concerned about crowded ballots, because it allows presidential primary candidates to get on the ballot with only 2,500 signatures; and it lets all candidates for other office get on primary ballots with only 25 signatures. Also he mentioned that Tennessee lets independent candidates get on the ballot for President with 275 signatures and independent candidates for all other office only need 25 signatures.
The part of the decision on ballot order of candidates is surely the most thorough court opinion on that subject ever written. The opinion contains an exhaustive report on research on whether ballot access order affects voting behavior. Read The Full Story