Loss of Privacy

Keeping you informed on recent losses to privacy and civil rights worldwide.

Browsing Posts tagged Politics

For the past three years, Elaine Rich and 3,000 other average people have been quietly making probability estimates about everything from Venezuelan gas subsidies to North Korean politics as part of , an experiment put together by three well-known psychologists and some people inside the intelligence community.

According to one report, the predictions made by the Good Judgment Project are often better even than intelligence analysts with access to classified information, and many of the people involved in the project have been astonished by its success at making accurate predictions.

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This video is a bit heavy on the far-mongering, but it’s still important for people to know what’s in the agreement and why no one has been allowed to know so far.

What is the TPP, or Trans-Pacific Partnership? Why are corporate paid lobbyists allowed advise and read the details, but Congress is mostly kept in the dark? How will it effect average Americans and why is no one talking about it? No one other than groups like Economy In Crisis, Public Citizen and Infowars that is. Find out what one Congressman had to say after successfully suing to read the document as it has been negotiated thus far and how this massive “trade” agreement will change your life forever.

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Is Edward Snowden a hero for revealing government wrongdoing, or a traitor for leaking classified information? “I don’t think anybody acts and says to themselves, ‘What I’m doing is immoral, but I’m going to do it.’ People always rationalize,” according to former CIA spokesman Bill Harlow. Correspondent Lucky Severson reports on the debate over the morality of Snowden’s actions.

Selected quotes from the transcript:

EDWARD SNOWDEN: I’m just another guy who sits there day to day in the office and watches what’s happening and goes, “This is something that’s not our place to decide. The public needs to decide whether these programs or policies are right or wrong.”

THOMAS DRAKE: I went through every chain of command that existed, including internal inspector general.

SEVERSON: Snowden has said that he skipped the country because he saw what happened to whistleblower Thomas Drake. Drake was an NSA senior analyst who went to the Baltimore Sun only after he had gone up the chain of command to complain about a billion-dollar spy program that was later abandoned.

DRAKE: I was put under severe duress. I was surveilled physically and electronically. I was threatened. At one point the chief prosecutor, in April of 2008, said, “How would you like to spend the rest of your life in prison, Mr. Drake, unless you cooperate with our investigation?” And so they came after me with everything they had.

JESSEYLN RADACK: I mean, when you are a whistleblower, you are extremely isolated. The government called me a traitor and a turncoat and a terrorist sympathizer in the New York Times, and that makes you pretty radioactive.

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First, Tom Perkins pissed everyone when he compared the supposed assault on the wealthy to that of the persecution of the Jews in Nazi Germany.

Now, he says, if you have more money, you should get more votes.

“The Tom Perkins system is: You don’t get to vote unless you pay a dollar of taxes,” Perkins said.

“But what I really think is, it should be like a corporation. You pay a million dollars in taxes, you get a million votes. How’s that?”

You can watch the full interview below.

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Bloomfield, New Jersey’s Councilman Carlos Bernard asked acting police chief James Behre “to fix a parking ticket” and to favor Hispanic officers for promotions in two separate instances — all to “solidify” Behre’s position to become the permanent chief of the 124-member department, Behre said during the public comments section at the meeting.

Behre demanded that the mayor and township administrator call for an investigation by the state Attorney General’s office.

“No one owns the chief’s position. It’s not for sale,” Behre said.

In one instance, Behre recounted, the councilman asked for a Hispanic officer to be made detective “and follows up with this: this will solidify your position as chief and your problems will go away.”

“He’s come into my office and used the word ‘we’ to imply that he’s there on behalf of the whole council,” Behre said.

In the video below, acting Police Chief Behre stands up to the town council and Mayor regarding political interference. This video is an excerpt from the Town Council meeting on February 10, 2014. After the meeting, Behre was placed on is placed on leave pending fitness of duty evaluation.

Behre, 50, said that he received a letter today from Township Administrator Ted Ehrenburg relieving Behre of his duties, effective immediately. Behre said he’s been scheduled for a “fitness of duty evaluation” with a doctor on March 3.

Mayor Michael Venezia confirmed that Behre was placed on paid leave today but said it was due to concerns over Behre’s health and not due to his comments regarding Councilman Carlos Bernard.

“He’s still being paid. We felt that we needed to take precautions,” Venezia said. During Behre’s comments on Monday, the acting chief claimed he had lost 10 pounds due to stress caused by the turmoil within the police department and that his children ask “why daddy is angry every night,” the mayor noted.

Behre, a 27-year veteran of the Bloomfield Police Department, said he’s convinced he was placed on leave as a direct result of speaking out against Bernard’s meddling in police affairs.

“That’s exactly it,” Behre said when reached by phone. “They can do what they want but I find it interesting that when a chief of police tries to protect his department, instead of taking my concerns seriously and forward them up to the Attorney General’s Office, they relieve me of my duties.”

Video.

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