Posts tagged Dianne Feinstein

Dianne Feinstein Accidentally Confirms That NSA Tapped The Internet Backbone | Techdirt

However, as Kevin Bankston notes, during Thursday’s Senate Intelligence Committee hearing, Dianne Feinstein more or less admitted that they get emails via “upstream” collection methods. As you can see in the following clip, Feinstein interrupts a discussion to read a prepared “rebuttal” to a point being made, and in doing so clearly says that the NSA can get emails via upstream collections:

Upstream collection… occurs when NSA obtains internet communications, such as e-mails, from certain US companies that operate the Internet background, i.e., the companies that own and operate the domestic telecommunications lines over which internet traffic flows.
She clearly means “backbone” rather than “background.” She’s discussing this in an attempt to defend the NSA’s “accidental” collection of information it shouldn’t have had. But that point is not that important. Instead, the important point is that she’s now admitted what most people suspected, but which the administration has totally avoided admitting for many, many years since the revelations made by Mark Klein.

So, despite years of trying to deny that the NSA can collect email and other communications directly from the backbone (rather than from the internet companies themselves), Feinstein appears to have finally let the cat out of the bag, perhaps without realizing it.
Congress now faces a stark choice on the NSA and civil liberties.
A bill sponsored by Senator Dianne Feinstein — the FISA Improvements Act — would make matters worse.
In sharp contrast, a bill sponsored by Senator Patrick Leahy and Representative James Sensenbrenner — the USA FREEDOM Act – would take major strides toward ending NSA abuses.
Learn more and take action.

Congress now faces a stark choice on the NSA and civil liberties.

A bill sponsored by Senator Dianne Feinstein — the FISA Improvements Act — would make matters worse.

In sharp contrast, a bill sponsored by Senator Patrick Leahy and Representative James Sensenbrenner — the USA FREEDOM Act – would take major strides toward ending NSA abuses.

Learn more and take action.

Privatization Nightmare: Sen. Dianne Feinstein's Husband Selling Post Offices to His Friends, Cheap

The Kind of Letters I'd like to see Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein write

In the letter, Senator Warren highlights the enforcement record of the Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP), which is responsible for overseeing the bailouts of the financial industry and whose enforcement staff and budget from 2009-2012 were only a fraction of those at the Fed, SEC and OCC. The letter specifically requests:

  1. The number of individuals your agency has charged criminally, including the number of senior officials you have charged;
  2. The number of criminal convictions your agency has obtained;
  3. The number of prison sentences your agency has secured;
  4. The number of individuals your agency has charged civilly, including the number of senior officers you have charged;
  5. The number of individuals your agency has suspended or permanently banned from working in the financial industry or elsewhere; and
  6. The total amount of funds your agency has obtained through civil judgment or orders of restitution.

"There have been some landmark settlements in recent weeks for which your agencies and others deserve substantial credit," Senator Warren writes. "However, a great deal of work remains to be done to hold institutions and individuals accountable for breaking the rules and to protect consumers and taxpayers from future violations.  Strong enforcement is an important deterrent, and I believe transparency is critical."

Senator Warren Highlights Enforcement Record of SIGTARP, Questions Fed, SEC, OCC

In Wall Street Journal, Senator Dianne Feinstein Insidiously Defends NSA Surveillance | The Dissenter

Toward the end of her op-ed, Feinstein mentioned she introduced legislation to make “improvements to these counterterrorism programs” that would “require court review when the call records are queried” and “mandate a series of limitations on how the records can be obtained, stored and used.” That might lead one to think Feinstein is in favor of reform, however, her legislation is intended to disrupt concerted efforts to truly impose reform.

The American Civil Liberties Union pointed out that her proposed legislation might change the way the NSA accesses Americans’ phone records but it will not impose a limit on the volume of records collected. In fact, the legislation is likely to expand government surveillance powers by “legalizing the warrantless wiretapping of people known to be located in the US for 7 days where that surveillance began abroad.” And, under a section of FISA, the legislation would also legalize queries for “US persons’ names or email addresses without probable cause, so long as it is for ‘articulable foreign intelligence purposes.’”

Similar to what former vice president Dick Cheney might have said if he were in her position, she concluded, “If we end this vital program, we only make our nation more vulnerable to another devastating terrorist attack.” This is because fear is all Feinstein has to make the case that the NSA should not give up any of its powers.

We request the California delegation to the United States Senate Amend S. 744 to mandate that all Border Patrol Agents in the field wear lapel cameras as stated in this press release.

There needs to be a reduction of excessive use of force by the Border Patrol, more protection of the public as well as agents, and it would be a clear form of accountability and oversight where none exists.
Gotta give credit where credit is due, Senator Feinstein

Gotta give credit where credit is due, Senator Feinstein

S.3525 Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act

I am writing as your constituent in the 51st Congressional district of California. I am writing as your constituent in the 51st Congressional district of California. I oppose S.3525 - Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act, and am tracking it using OpenCongress.org, the free public resource website for government transparency and accountability.
The summary of the bill states that it “Amends the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 to direct the Secretary of the Interior to issue a permit for the importation of any polar bear part (other than an internal organ) from a polar bear taken in a sport hunt in Canada to any person who meets specified requirements.” As I recall ,we have done little to curb climate change - one of the most glaring examples of that is the reduction of the Artic Ice Sheet which is the polar bear’s habitat. This animal is endangered. I object to encouraging hunting of this majestic animal where it is not acting out one’s cultural heritage.
I request your opposition to this bill.

 (via My Letter to Congress: S.3525 Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act - OpenCongress)

S.3525 Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act

I am writing as your constituent in the 51st Congressional district of California. I am writing as your constituent in the 51st Congressional district of California. I oppose S.3525 - Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act, and am tracking it using OpenCongress.org, the free public resource website for government transparency and accountability.

The summary of the bill states that it “Amends the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 to direct the Secretary of the Interior to issue a permit for the importation of any polar bear part (other than an internal organ) from a polar bear taken in a sport hunt in Canada to any person who meets specified requirements.” As I recall ,we have done little to curb climate change - one of the most glaring examples of that is the reduction of the Artic Ice Sheet which is the polar bear’s habitat. This animal is endangered. I object to encouraging hunting of this majestic animal where it is not acting out one’s cultural heritage.

I request your opposition to this bill.


The Senate Votes on Keystone XL Soon. Call your Senator:

The Senate will soon be voting on an Amendment that would railroad construction of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.

This pipeline would transport the world’s dirtiest oil across critical drinking water and accelerate climate change by helping develop the Alberta tar sands, which NASA’s top climate scientist James Hansen says would mean ‘essentially game over’ for the climate.

Your calls help stiffen the spines of waffling Senators and encourage them to reject the pipeline. Can you give your Senators a call right now?

Note for Californians:
I received an e-mail from Sen. Barbara Boxer stating her opposition to this project. If you must choose only one Senator to contact, pick Dianne Feinstein.

24 Hour Challenge: Stopping the Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline: www.StopTar.org

The environmental movement is joining in an all out, 24 hour push to keep Congress from approving the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. From noon eastern on Monday to noon on Tuesday, we are aiming for 500,000 messages to show the clear public support for President Obama’s decision to deny the permit for this dirty energy project.

The reason for this urgency is that we think there will be an attempt to put a provision to approve Keystone XL in the Senate transportation bill. And this can happen at any moment. So we are showing that there is widespread public support for the President’s rejection of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The American public does not want to see Congress approving a dirty energy project.

You need to send your message now.