Archive for the ‘Bill of Rights’ Category

DOJ Sues Those Who Challenge the Authority of NSL Warrant-less Data Collection

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

From: EFF

… Not only does this briefing show that the Department of Justice continues to strongly protect the FBI’s NSL authority, it highlights a startlingly aggressive new tactic used by the Department of Justice: suing NSL recipients who challenge the FBI’s authority, arguing that court challenges to such authority themselves amount to breaking the law.

Political Rhetoric is no Substitute for Competence

Monday, June 13th, 2011

“In the course of any given year, Congress votes on taxes, medical care, military spending, foreign aid, agriculture, labor, international trade, airlines, housing, insurance, courts, natural resources, and much more. There are professionals who have spent their entire adult lives specializing in just one of these fields. The idea that Congress can be competent in all these areas simultaneously is staggering. Yet, far from pulling back — as banks or other private enterprises must, if they don’t want to be ruined financially by operating beyond the range of their competence — Congress is constantly expanding further into more fields. Having spent years ruining the housing markets with their interference, leading to a housing meltdown that has taken the whole economy down with it, politicians have now moved on into micro-managing automobile companies and medical care. They are not going to stop unless they get stopped. And that is not going to happen until the voters recognize the fact that political rhetoric is no substitute for competence.” –economist Thomas Sowell

Tell Congress: It’s Time for Some Sanity when it comes to Security

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

Tell Congress: It’s Time for Some Sanity when it comes to Security

It’s not often that the ACLU and I are on the same side of an issue.

From: ACLU

A 6-year old getting patted down at the airport — leaving her confused and in tears because she thought she did something wrong — is an example of the out-of-control searches and security measures in our airports.

Aviation security requires striking a delicate balance between the personal safety of passengers and their right to privacy. Unfortunately, TSA has developed increasingly invasive methods of searching passengers that are encroaching upon their rights. The TSA has subjected passengers to “enhanced” pat-downs, which have resulted in reports of people feeling humiliated and traumatized, and, in some cases, reports comparing their psychological impact to sexual assaults.

Tell Congress to support the bipartisan Aircraft Passenger Whole-Body Imaging Limitations Act of 2011. Read more.

via WarriorTimes

Bureaucrats Tear Down Basketball Hoops

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

New York’s Idiotic Ban on Geiger Counters

Monday, January 14th, 2008

From: The Technology Liberation Front

 Steve Bellovin points out a silly proposal to require licenses for Geiger counters. Like Bellovin, I’m at a loss as to why anyone would think this was a good idea. The police department says the legislation would “prevent false alarms and unnecessary public concern,” but it’s not clear either that false alarms are a major problem, or that this registration requirement would prevent them. Strangely enough, the article doesn’t cite a single example in which “false alarms” created serious problems for anybody.


Big Brother Wants to Control Your Thermostat

Monday, January 14th, 2008

From: Fox

California energy regulators are considering taking control of residents’ thermostats, giving them the ability to control the temperatures of homes during energy crises, the New York Times reports.

The California Energy Commission is expected to vote on the rules next month, which would give utilities the power to control home thermostats via radio control to manage electricity shortages, the paper reports.

Bernard Siegan – Propery Rights Advocate Dies at 82

Thursday, March 30th, 2006

From: Best of the Web

“Bernard Siegan: Reaganite and University of San Diego law professor Bernard Siegan, died on Monday at age 82.

In a pathbreaking 1980 book, Mr. Siegan challenged the view set out by the New Deal Supreme Court in 1937 that property rights are somehow inferior to other rights and deserve lesser protection. Gail Heriot, a colleague at the University of San Diego, summarized Mr. Siegan’s thinking this way: “What’s yours is yours, what’s mine is mine, and the government does not have unlimited power to take that property or to tell us what to do with it.” Who could have given him such a crazy idea? It was James Madison, the father of the Constitution, who wrote: “Government is instituted to protect property of every sort… that alone is a just government, which impartially secures to every man, whatever is his own.”

Read more

Sherriff May Be Prosecuted for Distributing FEMA’s Ice to Katrina Victims.

Friday, March 24th, 2006

Did you hear about Sherriff Billy McGee in Hattisburg, MS who is being prosecuted by the Federal Government because he and his deputies went to a national guard base and hijacked two FEMA trailers full of ice and distributed them to the people of his county because FEMA was failing to act in the wake of Katrina. I want to put togehter a legal aid fund to help him. I may even become one of those worthless people who go and stand outside the courthouse with a sign that says “Let Billy Go!”.

From:The Hattisburg American

“McGee and several unidentified deputies are accused of handcuffing and detaining a National Guardsman who tried to prevent them from seizing two Federal Emergency Management Agency trucks at Camp Shelby on Sept. 4, six days after Katrina battered Hattiesburg.”

Read More.

How to talk to a Muslim Extremist

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2006

I like this guy Mike Adams. Be sure to also read The Queer Muhammad: an experiment in tolerance.

“Well, I guess it had to happen. Several weeks after writing my “Queer Muhammad” column, I finally got a call from a Muslim extremist – one who mostly shouted at me over the phone in broken English. I have decided to reprint our conversation in today’s column, hoping that it will shed some light on how to deal with the fundamentalist Muslim disdain for free speech, not to mention the fundamentalist Muslim disdain for satire.” (more)

“You have been chosen for extra attention” – TSA

Monday, February 27th, 2006

This from Peggy Noonan.

Please read the whole article. It’s getting scary out there.

“Ahead of me, throwing bags in bins, is a young mother with a two or three year old girl. The mother is tense, flustered. Bags, bottles, a stroller to break down and get on the conveyer belt. A security agent yelling: “Keep your boarding pass in your hand at all times.” The little girl is looking up, anxious. All these yelling adults, and things being thrown. “My doll!” she says as her mother puts it quickly in a gray bin. “We’ll get it on the other side!” says the mother. She grabs her daughter’s hand roughly.

“Take off your sneakers!” a clerk yells.

The mother stops, hops, quickly removes her sneakers. Her daughter has already walked through the magnetometer and is wandering on the other side. She looks around: Where’s mommy?

Mommy gets her sneakers in a bin, on the belt, gets through the magnetometer.

I’m relieved. Her daughter holds her mother’s leg. They begin to walk on.

A TSA clerk shouts to another, “You didn’t check the sneakers. You have to put the sneakers through.”

The second clerk yells–“Your daughter has to go through again!”

The little girl is scared–What did I do wrong? I’m sorry, mommy.

The mother is tense, gets a look.

I lift my chin at the TSA agent, smile, and say softly, “Miss, that poor girl with the child, she is having a tough time. The little girl is scared and–”

“We are following procedures!” said the TSA agent. Her mouth was twisted in anger.

I nodded and said softly, “I know, I’m just saying–a little gentle in your tone.”

She looked at my ticket and smiled.

“You have been chosen by the computer for extra attention.”


“You have been chosen by the computer for extra attention.”