We must defend civil rights... even for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

After a day-long manhunt, and the lock-down of a major American city, the second suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing was finally taken into custody on Friday. A Watertown resident tipped police after noticing blood on a boat in his backyard, and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found hiding out inside. Authorities report that he was severely wounded before agreeing to surrender.

According to the New York Times, a federal law enforcement official stated that the FBI is invoking a “public safety exception,” which allows them to delay reading the suspect his Miranda rights. The Supreme Court ruled in 1984 that the FBI has a “narrow” right to delay mirandizing a suspect in “exceptional cases,” where the FBI believes there to be an imminent threat to public safety.

However, this exception is only temporary, and the FBI must read a suspect their rights once it becomes clear no additional threats exist. Information obtained by questioning the suspect during this “exception” period may also be considered as evidence during a future trial.

This legal loophole is a concern for many civil rights advocates, even when the suspect in question is a potential terrorist. Yet, some in our media and political arena aren't concerned with civil rights, and are calling for Tsarnaev to be held as an enemy combatant, and taken to Guantanamo Bay. But we must not circumvent our justice system simply because of the horrific nature of these crimes.

When we deny one individual their civil rights – no matter how evil we may believe them to be – we chip away at the civil liberties that protect all of us. We must defend these rights at all costs....even when it means defending the rights of Dzhokar Tsarnaev.


Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 8 weeks ago

What are they afraid of...that he's going to set off another bomb from his hospital bed? I think there is a lot of propagandist nonsense being played out here...all for show. Now, if he can't speak or comprehend hearing Miranda rights read to him, then that makes sense to hold off until he can understand and respond coherently.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

Democracy Now! had a good story today about how the public saftey exception to the reading of the Miranda warnings was greatly expanded by Obama to almost make them meaningless. Initially, the exeption was carefully defined and strictly limited to what could actually be seen as considering pertinence to genuinely imminent dangers of approprately significant magnitude.

In addition - as constitutional lawyer and columnist for the Guardian, Gleen Greenwald said on the program - "And the images that were sent and the messages that were broadcast over and over and over again were that Muslims were a unique threat, that we ought to be not just tolerant, but grateful, when the U.S. military and police and other authorities fill our streets, shut down our major cities, ride through and go house to house without search warrants, forcing people to come out of their homes and searching their homes—all sorts of application of very extreme sort of police and military tactics, all in the name of Islamic terrorism. And the idea that we should just rush to call this terrorism, that we should essentially assume their guilt, that we should suspend normal legal process, that we should treat it differently, is all very much the core of what has driven the radicalism and extremism of the United States government over the last decade. And I really believe that this incident will sort of normalize behavior that we should all be very wary of, even in the most extreme conditions, let alone an incident that, although horrific and heinous, in terms of the death count, in terms of what it actually is, really ought to be viewed as a crime."

What people forget is that, in our society, the rights of the accused (and suspected) - including the presumption of innocence - exist to protect the innocent from wrongful conviction and wrongful punishment (and undue harrassment by the authorities). They are not for the privileging of the guilty.

A former deputy U.S. Attornry General said that the Boston Matrathon bomber shouldn't be charged with terrorism but mass murder - in contrast to people like U.S. Rep. Steve King and Senator John McCain who say he should be held as an enemy combatant. The definition of terrorism is the intentional targeting - killing or injuring - of innocent civillians (and usually on a grand scale - for greater "political" effect) to attain a political goal. The use of explosives doesn't make someone a terrorist any more than adhering to the Muslim faith does.

By that definition the Boston bombers are not terrorists but mass murderers, the Weather Underground were not terrorists but politically motivated vandals - as they went to great pains to make sure noone was ever physically harmed by their acts - and the "Unabomber", Ted Kozynski, was not a terrorist but a targeted assasin.


leighmf's picture
leighmf 11 years 8 weeks ago

"no matter how evil we may believe them to be " we can't go back to the days of lynch mobs.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

In addition, U.S. citizens are not more entitled to the rights of the accused and suspected than those who are not citizens as it is not less important that we do not wrongly convict or punish non citizens. The whole distinction was only started by the Bush Administration after 9/11 in order to get Americans to adopt an imperialistic racism placing Americans at the top of some supposed hierarchy of relative value of human beings.

Nor does returning to visit the country you emigrated from make one an enemy combatant. We simply have many of the same fascists (by the more popular definition of the word, not Thom's nurdy, academic definition) - the same anti democratic imperialists - trying to opportunize on this, like they did 9/11, to advance their agenda.

judib 11 years 8 weeks ago

Frankly, I have no problem with them TEMPORARILY delaying Mirandizing him to see if they could determine through this suspect whether or not there were other explosives or other perpetrators that could risk public safety. Less than 72 hours after capture, and considerably fewer hours after he was able to communicate at all, he was read his rights.

Seems appropriate under the circumstances!

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 11 years 8 weeks ago

Mark Saulys - I have no disagreement with what you say, but how is your use of the word fascism any different than Thom's? However, both of you disagree with the dictionary definition and, of course, Wikipedia. Fascism being the merger of state and private interests and selling those interests to the public via nationalism, was quickly redefined when a multi-national corporation bought out Meriam-Webster per Thom. The multi-national quickly removed the private interest part out of the definition in the 1980's. Interestingly, my dictionaries agree with what Thom says and my sister's do not.

howardb4 11 years 8 weeks ago

The last two administrations, one republican and one democratic, both have not just been chipping with the full support of both sidess of that corrupt aisle, but have been on course to totally corrode away many constitutional guarantees. Obama, now being given Royal Tyrannical rights by this same congress who do not represent the people, now can determine who lives and who dies on this planet. And for Americans this means a complete violation of the due process clause of the 5th and 14th amendment.

Why is it that Thom Hartman, has been essentially quiet concerning the murderous unconstitutional nature that the office of president has been afforded? The innocent Afghan children that Obama has murdered, and terms those murders, that very obscene term used by the wretched politicos,"collateral damage". That should be complete outrage to all, yet Thom and the rest of the brain challenged population have accepted the murder of Afghan innocent children as reasonable and tolerable and yet are so uposet, and rightly so, when American innocent children are murdered. Where is there a difference between a murdered Afghan child and an American child?

There exists in this immoral country the quite noticable absence of the ability to discern right from wrong. And why Hartman is not using his role to wake up his fellow democrats to the murderous nature of this president and the congress does not speak well of him.

Where is the OUTRAGE!!!

megalomaniac's picture
megalomaniac 11 years 8 weeks ago

Satire for a Fund raiser

Usually Thom's nerdy, academic definition gets me to think out of the box. Being rather poor can assure most that Google’s megalomaniac definition is a standard of my condition. That being said, in a sober way with spikes of comical laughter like a scientist, not like a nemesis, that just might have figured out when man first appeared on earth. It was because of the earth poles reversing, not an asteroid. Surprise!

Back then who knows what could have happened. Maybe if the previous Vice Presidential candidate Mrs. Palin looked a little higher at what is called Auroramagnetosphere, also commonly called the Northern Lights than suggest to study this thing, the politics might be different. We could be ready for the next Polar Reversal. Seriously derivatives mapped out in unique ways can blow up the Federal Reserve better than any Wahhabi IED.

My suggestion to this dilemma is to build scientific metro lines immediately. The unemployed could look to pan for gold while doing scientific work for gigolo interest groups, also, hell on wheels maintenance plans with a living wage galore. But we know the open range moose profit marketers will complain and lobby Congress. Especially in new long range planning for new border problems with Russia and China, possible Bearing Straight or Gay immigration, let alone boot leg crude oil that will stymie stocks in the Key stoned piped line extension to kickstand Russia.

The chatter developed by this free speech message should be enough to generate tons of money, remember free speech is money so pony up and send in your dollar to Thom to continue.

Enemy combatants need not apply.

akunard's picture
akunard 11 years 8 weeks ago

If one lies taking the oath of citizenship con it be revoked?

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 11 years 8 weeks ago

Thom and Louise wrote ~ "When we deny one individual their civil rights - no matter how evil we may believe them to be - we chip away at the civil liberties that protect all of us. We must defend these rights at all costs....even when it means defending the rights of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev."

I agree 100%. Anytime We the People act together to diminish even the rights of the least amongst us, we act together to diminish the rights of all of us.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

Perhaps, if that were the true purpose of delaying them and not a ruse to effectively lynch or railroad someone. .

My point is that these rights are to protect the innocent from wrongful conviction and punishment thus they are all the MORE IMPORTANT the more shockingly horrible and emotion engendering that a crime is. Those rights are NOT, somehow, for the aiding of the guilty as some people seem to think. When they are denied someone accused and suspected of a crime we are ALL hurt by it.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

A word can have many definitions. It varies for different purposes and applications of the word, among different segments of the population speaking the language and changes over time from one period to another. In actual fact, its definition is whatever people believe it to be. A language is a living thing, people don't speak according to how dictionaries are written, dictionaries are written according to how people speak.

Most people are unaware of the academic, "nerdy" definition of fascism, thus it has an irrelevance to anyone outside the theory bound circles. Most people define fascism as aggressive nationalistic chauvinism or supremecism coupled with anti democratic authoritarianism.

Anyway, the above desribed, commonly occurring, socio political phenomena deserves a name and "fascism" will do nicely for that.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

Your citizenship can be revoked if you lie. Americans never lie.

If you lie on your citizenship application it can be revoked.

nora's picture
nora 11 years 8 weeks ago

The INALIENABLE RIGHTS recognized by our country's original documents exist no matter if there are national boundaries or no boundaries!

INALIENABLE RIGHTS apply to every human on Earth! It proved to be the role of our country's revolutionaries to RECOGNIZE them and quantify them.

And their work has been the basis of human rights in the modern civilized world -- until knuckle draggers like Bush and his minions like John Yoo et al began the destruction of the only thing Western Civilization created to make up for Europeans' propensity to exploit anyone and everyone for profit.

I think it should be acknowledged that the quest for realizing human rights comes directly as a response to the EXTREME exploitation of the European dominator culture with its economic chauvinism, resource theft, physical slavery, colonialism, imperialism and corporatism.

By means of today's NeoFascistic use of the Patriot Act and a security state that is sold by media propaganda constantly using fear (just as original propagandists Goebbels and Bernays refined it) -- we can end up with the continued loss of Modern Civilization and plunge back into the Dark Ages now made even darker with Surveillence Technology and security excuses used to dismantle our Human Rights protections.

I've hardly seen anyone refer to the younger brother as the "alleged" perpetrator. This is how fear can be ratchetted up and the accused found guilty by the mob before a trial.

It's awful watching the destruction of our country's greatest contribution to humankind.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 8 weeks ago

Fourteen Points of Agreement-Article from The Open Civil Engineering Journal, 2008, 2, 35-40 3

Paper written by:
Steven E. Jones, Frank M. Legge, Kevin R. Ryan, Anthony F. Szamboti, and James R.Gourley

Excerpts from:
Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction

1. WTC 7 Collapse Issue
FEMA analyzed the remarkable collapse of WTC building 7, the 47-story skyscraper that, even though it was not hit by a plane, collapsed about seven hours after the second Tower collapse. We certainly agree that FEMA’s best fire-based hypothesis “has only a low probability of occurrence.”

2. Withstanding Jet Impact
FEMA: “The WTC towers had been designed to withstand the accidental impact of a Boeing 707 seeking to land at a nearby airport...”
John Skilling, a leading structural engineer for the WTC Towers, was interviewed in 1993 just after a bomb in a truck went off in the North Tower: ...."Our analysis indicated the biggest problem would be the fact that all the fuel (from the airplane) would dump into the building. There would be a horrendous fire. A lot of people would be killed," he said. "The building structure would still be there."
"....The supporting columns are closely spaced and even if several were disabled, the others would carry the load."
"...Skilling’s team showed that a commercial jet would not bring down a WTC Tower..."

3. Pancake Theory Not Supported
NIST’s findings do not support the “pancake theory” of collapse, which is premised on a progressive failure of the floor systems in the WTC towers... Thus, the floors did not fail progressively to cause a pancaking phenomenon”

"This theory of collapse was proposed by the earlier FEMA report and promoted in the documentary “Why the Towers Fell” produced by NOVA [7]. The “pancake theory of collapse” is strongly promoted in a Popular Mechanics article along with a number of other discredited ideas [8, 9]. We, on the other hand, agree with NIST that the “pancake theory” is not scientifically tenable and ought to be set aside in serious discussions regarding the destruction of the WTC Towers and WTC 7."

4. Massive Column Cores
"...the WTC Towers included “massive” interconnected steel columns in the cores of the buildings, in addition to the columns in the outside walls. The central core columns bore much of the gravity loads so the Towers were clearly NOT hollow. Yet the false notion that the Towers were “hollow tubes” with the floors supported just by the perimeter columns seems to have gained wide acceptance. For example, an emeritus structural engineering professor asserted, “The structural design of the towers was unique in that the supporting steel structure consisted of closely spaced columns in the walls of all four sides. The resulting structure was similar to a tube...” [12]. The fact is the Towers were constructed with a substantial load-supporting core structure as well as perimeter columns – and on this point we agree with NIST in dispelling false popular notions."

5. Essentially Free Fall
"NIST evidently neglects a fundamental law of physics in glibly treating the remarkable “free fall” collapse of each Tower, namely, the Law of Conservation of Momentum. This law of physics means that the hundreds of
thousands of tons of material in the way must slow the upper part of the building because of its mass, independent of deformation which can only slow the fall even more. (Energy and Momentum must both be conserved.) "
"Published papers have argued that this negligence by NIST (leaving the near-free-fall speeds unexplained) is a major flaw in their analysis [13, 14]. NIST ignores the possibility of controlled demolitions, which achieve complete building collapses in near free-fall times by moving the material out of the way using explosives. So, there is an alternative explanation that fits the data without violating basic laws of physics."

6. Fire Endurance Tests, No Failures
"We agree that NIST had actual fire tests completed and that all four “trusses like those in the WTC towers” survived the fire-endurance testing “without collapsing.” We also agree that “the fires in the towers on September 11 ... were substantially different from the conditions in the test furnaces;” the test furnaces were hotter and burned longer."
"...these real-life tests indicate that the buildings should not have completely collapsed. In addition, we have hundreds of cases of fires in tall steel-frame buildings and complete collapse has never occurred. "

7. Fires of Short Duration
"NIST: “The initial jet fuel fires themselves lasted at most a few minutes” [4]. “At any given location, the duration of [air, not steel] temperatures near 1,000 °C was about 15 min to 20 min. The rest of the time, the calculated temperatures were near 500 °C or below” [4]."

"We agree. But then, given that the fires were brief and patchy, how did both towers experience sudden-onset failure of structural steel over a broad area in each tower and how could the collapses of all three WTC high-rises have been so symmetrical and complete?
next: part 2


Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 8 weeks ago

part 2
8. WTC Fires Did Not Melt Steel
NIST: “In no instance did NIST report that steel in the WTC towers melted due to the fires. The melting point of steel is about 1,500 degrees Celsius (2,800 degrees Fahrenheit). Normal building fires and hydrocarbon (e.g., jet fuel) fires generate temperatures up to about 1,100 degrees Celsius (2,000 degrees Fahrenheit). NIST reported maximum upper layer air temperatures of about 1,000 degrees Celsius (1,800 degrees Fahrenheit) in the WTC towers."

" Agreed. We also find agreement with Prof. Thomas Eagar on this point: The fire is the most misunderstood part of the WTC collapse. Even today, the media report (and many scientists believe) that the steel melted. It is
argued that the jet fuel burns very hot, especially with so much fuel present. This is not true.... The temperature of the fire at the WTC was not unusual, and it was most definitely not capable of melting steel [18]. We are in remarkable agreement, then: the WTC fires were not capable of melting steel. Of course, NIST then may have trouble explaining the molten material flowing out of the South Tower just before its collapse, as well as evidence for temperatures much higher than NIST’s reported 1,100°C

9. Destruction of WTC Steel Evidence
"...only a tiny fraction of steel was analyzed from the WTC Towers, and none of the WTC 7 steel was analyzed by NIST. What happened to the rest of the steel from the crime scene?" It was cut up and shipped to China to be melted down. "Such destruction of evidence shows the astounding ignorance of government officials to the value of a thorough, scientific investigation of the largest fire-induced collapse in world history."
"...only a small fraction of the steel was saved for testing, it is clear that an “enormous amount” of the WTC steel was examined either for or by NIST, and the samples selected were chosen for their identified importance to the NIST investigation."

10. Unusually Bright Flame and Glowing Liquid(WTC2)
"We agree and congratulate NIST for including these observations of an “unusual flame... which is generating a plume of white smoke” [4] “followed by the flow of a glowing liquid” having “an orange glow” [3]. With regard to the “very bright flame... which is generating a plume of white smoke”, NIST effectively rules out burning aluminum, because “Aluminum is not expected to ignite at normal fire temperatures...”[3]

11. High-Temperature Steel Attack, Sulfidation

"We agree [with FEMA] that the physical evidence for “severe high temperature corrosion attack” involving sulfur is compelling. Here we have grounds for an interesting discussion: How were “severe high temperatures” reached in the WTC buildings? What is the source of the sulfur that attacked the steel in these buildings?"
"Their [NIST] failure to respond to this documented anomaly is a striking phenomenon in itself. Perhaps NIST will explain and correct this oversight by considering the high-temperature sulfidation data in their long overdue report on the collapse of WTC 7. The existence of severe high temperatures in the WTC destruction is by now very well established [22]."

12. Computer Modeling and Visualizations
"We agree that NIST resorted to complex computer simulations and no doubt “adjusted the input” to account for the Towers’ destruction, after the fire-endurance physical tests did not support their preordained collapse theory. But the end result of such tweaked computer models, which were provided without visualizations and without sufficient detail for others to validate them, is hardly compelling. An article in the journal New Civil Engineer states: World Trade Center disaster investigators [at NIST] are refusing to show computer visualisations of the collapse of the Twin Towers despite calls from leading structural and fire engineers, NCE has learned."

13. Total Collapse Explanation Lacking
NIST: “This letter is in response to your April 12, 2007 request for correction... we are unable to provide a full explanation of the total collapse”
"We agree that NIST so far has not provided a full explanation for the total collapse. Indeed they take care to explain that their report stops short of the collapse, only taking the investigation up to the point where each Tower “was poised for collapse”

14.Search For Explosive or Thermite Residues
"We agree; there is no evidence that NIST tested for residues of thermite or explosives. This is another remarkable admission. Probing for residues from pyrotechnic materials including thermite in particular, is specified in fire and explosion investigations by the NFPA 921 code:
Unusual residues might remain from the initial fuel. Those residues could arise from thermite, magnesium, or other pyrotechnic materials [26]. Traces of thermite in residues (solidified slag, dust, etc.) would tell us a great deal about the crime..."
"This is standard procedure for fire and explosion investigations. Perhaps NIST will explain why they have not looked for these residues? The code specifies that fire-scene investigators must be prepared to justify an exclusion [26].
"NIST has been asked about this important issue recently, by investigative reporter Jennifer Abel:
Abel: "..what about that letter where NIST said it didn't look for evidence of explosives?”
Neuman[spokesperson at NIST, listed on the WTC report]:
"Right, because there was no evidence of that."
Abel: But how can you know there's no evidence if you don't look for it first?
Neuman: "If you're looking for something that isn't there, you're wasting your time... and the taxpayers’ money.” [27].

"The evident evasiveness of this answer might be humorous if not for the fact that NIST’s approach here affects the lives of so many innocent people. We do not think that looking for thermite or other residues specified in the NFPA 921 code is “wasting your time.” We may be able to help out here as well, for we have looked for such residues in the WTC remains using state-of-the-art analytical methods, especially in the voluminous toxic dust that was produced as the buildings fell and killed thousands of people, and the evidence for thermite use is mounting."


Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 8 weeks ago

The Open Chemical Physics Journal, 2009, 2, 7-31
Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe

The paper is a rather lengthy pdf with many photos and descriptions of various scientific tests of the dust samples taken from the area around the WTC buildings. They give 10 basic observations (not listed here) that led to their conclusions :

"The red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material."
Here are a few excerpts relating to the safety of handling:

" Safe handling of the malleable sol-gel material (nano-thermite in wet form) allows easy coating of surfaces (such as steel), which the same group, in a subsequent report, says they have achieved.
“The sol-gel process is very amenable to dip, spin, and spray-coating technologies to coat surfaces. We have utilized this property to dip-
coat various substrates to make sol-gel Fe2O3/Al/Viton coatings. The energetic coating dries to give a nice adherent film.” “We have prepared fine powders, pressed pellets, cast monoliths, and thin films of the hybrid inorganic/organic energetic nanocomposite” [25].
Thus, the energetic nano-composite can be sprayed or even “painted” onto surfaces, effectively forming an energetic or even explosive paint. The red chips we found in the WTC dust conform to their description of “thin films” of “hybrid inorganic/organic energetic nanocomposite”
"...under ambient conditions the hybrid inorganic/organic energetic
composite is very stable to impact, is spark insensitive, and only very slightly friction sensitive. As noted in the Experimental section of
this report, in our hands wet hybrid nanocomposites are safe to handle and difficult to thermal [sic] ignite. However, once dry the material burns very vigorously and rapidly with the evolution of significant amounts of gaseous species"

"The organic component contributes to the rapid gas evolution and explosive nature of these energetic super-thermites when dry [24].
So how do they ignite super-thermite?

“Super-thermite electric matches” have been developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory for which “applications include triggering explosives for ... demolition” [30]. ....such matches, which are designed to be ignited by a simple electric pulse..."

"Super-Thermite electric matches produce no toxic lead smoke and are
safer to use because they resist friction, impact, heat, and static discharge through the composition, thereby minimizing accidental ignition. They can be designed to create various thermal-initiating outputs—simple sparks, hot slag, droplets, or flames—depending on the needs of different applications” [30].
"..conventional thermite is regarded as an incendiary whereas
super-thermite, which may include organic ingredients for rapid gas generation, is considered a pyrotechnic or explosive [6, 24]."

The terms "nano-thermite" and "super-thermite" are referring to the same thing.

MMmmNACHOS's picture
MMmmNACHOS 11 years 8 weeks ago

Security Against Freedom

We the Fools have bought a polished turd!!!
We the People are first hand victims to why "obedience" to government is fatal to our own Liberties, Independence and ability to self govern.
We the People have lost our faith and confidence in the ability to self govern; trading our freedoms for false securities.

Security against Freedom??? Is it really a question??? If it is...Ask yourself; Do I want to live in a Government that is Of, For, and By the People; One that acknowledges and respects, Independence and all of life, or do I want a Corporate Government that controls me and is built for profit by any means necessary, including disolving the principles stated in the Declaration of Independence, and ignors and twist the Laws stated in the U.S. Constitution and casts aside those who will not submit.

PLSzymeczek's picture
PLSzymeczek 11 years 8 weeks ago

What evidence do you have that young Mr. Tsarnaev lied when taking the citizenship oath?

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 11 years 8 weeks ago

Palindromedary ~ Wow! Thanks for that most disturbing education. I suppose its not that big of a step to go from believing your leaders are complicit in a crime to trying to accept that they actually committed the crime. Yet it is difficult to accept. Yet the finding of that nano/super-thermite in the dust residue at ground zero is compelling evidence indeed.

It certainly goes to show that President Eisenhower was more than correct in warning us about the undue influence of the military industrial complex. I wonder if he could have possibly foresaw that influence go this far? Of course, the next question is how to determine how widespread that influence is; and, how to get rid of it?

That also explains this crusade to destroy our civil liberties. They are the only obstacle in the way of this influence total domination of our country. We must fight for our civil rights now more than ever. Thank you!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 8 weeks ago

DAnnemarc: And, of course, the undemocratic forces who want to spy on us all are trying once again to unleash CISPA (Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protect Act) on us again. It has passed the House and has to go through the Senate and the President before it is unleashed upon us. They keep trying and, eventually, they may get it passed.

"[CISPA] would allow companies to easily hand over users' private information to the government thanks to a liability clause. This, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, "essentially means CISPA would override the relevant provisions in all other laws—including privacy laws."

"According to the EFF, "CISPA is written broadly enough to permit your communications service providers to share your emails and text messages with the government, or your cloud storage company could share your stored files."

CISPA failed last year because a lot of opposition by the people and, mostly, by corporations that were against it. In this years attempt at getting CISPA approved they have slightly changed the wording so these corporations would not be against it...and even for it. Corporations like AT&T, Comcast, HP, IBM, Intel, Time Warner, and Verizon. But it will still take away privacy from the people!

And, possibly, the only reason why Obama was against it (maybe) was because the wording in last year's CISPA allowed some amount of privacy security when transferring personal data from the private sector to the government but not the other way around..privacy data would still leak out. This year's CISPA, Obama (and the Senate) may not find it so unattractive...especially if all these big corporations are behind it.

They are trying to use the threat of Cyber Warfare from countries like China and claim that CISPA would help protect us (rather, the corporations). They are trying to tell us that we can trust our government and corporations (the ones that have been screwing us) but not the Chinese.

And, of course, the recent BM bombing was very timely that tended to show how our wonderful security apparatus..the police..FBI..etc were able to use our blessed technology (surveillance cameras and facial recognition software) to rapidly identify "terrorists" which led to their rapid capture. It was as if they were doing a commercial to usher in a new era that would make our lives so much safer if only we approved CISPA.

I just watched the new movie, Oblivion, and I couldn't help but see some similarities to what is happening today.

"Are you an effective team?" And the automatons dutifully answer: "Yes, we are an effective team!"

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

Exactly! It is precisely when the crime is so heinous, so horrible and so shocking; when it causes people to lose objectivity, become hysterical and seek to strike out more or less blindly; when we have trouble keeping our heads that those rights are necessary. It's then that we're likely to lynch somebody. It's for times like those that those rights and considerations were invented.

UNC Tarheels's picture
UNC Tarheels 11 years 8 weeks ago

Protect Dzhokar Tsarnev rights? Really what about the civil rights of the injured, maimed and the dead? The federal definition of WMD is ANY explosive device that is meant to kill or maim. I have no problem with not mirandising a terrorist for 48 hours to discern if there are in other attacks in the works. The rights of a suspect far out weigh the rights of a victim, so much so that the judicial system is in fear of falling flat on its back. I read that in the Iowa Law Review in the 80's. I agree that he should be treated as an enemy combatant. I also agree that there should be a universal background check nationwide, an assault weapons ban and 10 round magazines.

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 11 years 8 weeks ago

Mark Saulys -- My main point was that it would be nice if dictionaries were written according to how people speak (for the most part they are). However, if the 1% (AKA 0.01%) do like the way certain words are defined they will change them to direct how the people speak. It certainly worked for the word fascism for the masses. At least it certainly made me not understand what the liberal elitist meant when they said fascism.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 8 weeks ago

UNC Tarheels: "The federal definition of WMD is ANY explosive device that is meant to kill or maim."

You mean something like Drones or Helicopter gunships that spray blankets of bullets or any one of the many other WMDs that our military has used to murder all those civilian men, women, and children in the Middle East? The US has done many, many Boston Marathon Bombings killing hundreds of thousands of innocent people in the Middle East. But they get away with it, in some people's minds, by using the propaganda that they really aren't trying to kill civilians..they are just "collateral damage". Yeah, right! Total garbage lies!

How do you like it, Amerika? It's not much fun is it? But, unfortunately, I suspect that we have not seen the end of these kinds of violence. The US has made millions of enemies for their criminal terrorist behavior in the Middle East and I suspect more than a few will get their revenge.

And those two brothers were most probably, according to recent reports, not even connected to Al Qaida or any other group like that. They were just really, really ticked off at how the US has brazenly murdered so many innocent people...and for what? Control of the oil? Or, maybe the US criminal actions in the Middle East has more to do with creating lots of enemies so that they would keep scaring us into supporting, with our tax dollars, the military industrial complex and the national security state? Jingos can get their jollies by having an excuse, and a pardon, to continue their racist and hateful speech against anyone they can.

One thing, though, if future terrorists would please not target innocent civilians themselves, then their cause might be more acceptable to more people. If they went after the wealthy elite...especially the banksters, wall street criminals, heartless and cruel corporatists who are getting wealthy off of killing innocent civilians in the Middle East...then they would have fewer people, among the disenfranchised, that would shed tears for these criminal elite. Why hurt your own people? That only detracts from your cause. Now, if the FBI were behind it...they would go after the people...and not the criminal elite. Because they want us all to be very afraid.

I wouldn't even be surprised that one of our 3 letter agencies like the FBI set these two up. They are very well known to do things like that. They have done things like that before..a number of times. They find patsies that might have issues and then trick them into acting out something they would not have acted out, had they not had the explosive material (for example) and the urging or egging on by FBI undercover agents. The FBI supplies the material and then, usually, moves in for the sting to take all the credit and glory for 'protecting us from terrorists'. Whether or not they actually try or even, perhaps, fail to stop it in time may depend upon what kind of psyops they have in mind. How critical is it to scare people at the right times to affect people's attitudes about say...gun control laws about to be passed, or CISPA that will further erode our privacy issues. Or, even make a case for invading other countries like Afghanistan, or Iraq, or Iran, or even...maybe...Venezuela.

Where did these brothers get all of those explosives? And from whom?

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 11 years 8 weeks ago

Rachael or Lawrence said they got the explosives for $199*2 from a place on the Mass border. They paid cash. Where did they get the cash.

Howard Laverne Stewart's picture
Howard Laverne ... 11 years 8 weeks ago

Thom should place the RT news channel closer to the mainstream channels to

catch the attention of more people.

Howard Laverne Stewart's picture
Howard Laverne ... 11 years 8 weeks ago

Thom; Your golden Ideaology would catch on if you could do appearances on shows

like Real time-Bill maher.

mblockhart's picture
mblockhart 11 years 8 weeks ago

I question this that Thom said: "Information obtained by questioning the suspect during this “exception” period may also be considered as evidence during a future trial."

It was my understanding that just the opposite was the case. The information obtained before reading the man his rights could NOT be used to convict him. It was information regarding possible threats from others. It was on that basis that the Supreme Court allowed the limited questions to be asked before reading the rights because reading the rights might make him refuse to answer those questions if he thought the answers would be used to incriminate him.

At any rate, what actually occurred was that he was asked some limited questions regarding possible ongoing threats. He provided answers willingly. Then he was read his rights. It would seem that the fact that he willingly answered those questions that were not about his guilt could provide a basis for arguing, in the punishment phase of the trial, that he should be spared the death penalty. Thus that information might be used in his trial to his benefit, not his harm.

It's pretty clear that they had sufficient evidence, they believed, to convict him. What they needed to know was if there was an ongoing risk from others.

SHFabian's picture
SHFabian 11 years 8 weeks ago

With all due respect, are you serious? By the end of the 1990s, America's poor had been stripped of many of their fundamental civil/legal rghts and protections, and this generation of the middle class is fine with that. We did, indeed, decide that certain law-abiding citizens can be denied a number of civil rights. Even the ACLU, while acknowledging this fact, chose not to embrace the cause of restoring those rights (after all, there's no money in it). From there, this generation gave us Guantanamo, which utterly denies civil rights to the accused. It's wildly naive to think that the law is applied equally to everyone. By now, simply denying that civil rights apply to (fill in the blank) has become pretty routine in the US.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

Did you hear ANY of what we've been saying? Those rights are to protect the INNOCENT from wrongful conviction and wrongful punishment, not terrorists. For that reason those rights include the presumption of innocence, as well. How does it help to fight terrorism if, instead of the terrorists, innocent people are punished for their crimes? That could even be considered another hit for the terrorists if we, out of the TERROR they succeeded in letting loose upon us, dismantled our great American system of justice and became a wild, barbaric mob.

How the convicted, once proven guilty, are punished - whether it be severe enough, too severe, too barbarically "cruel and unusual" - is a seperate question. Properly establishing guilt is the first priority and, thus, the preventing and restraining of hysterical lynch mob mentallities.

And, of course, this is an oppportunity for the anti democratic to demagouge to advance their agenda. The Weimar Republic became the Third Reich in just such a way, the bestowing of "emergency powers" upon the executive branch of the German government and the dispensing with of civil liberties of the general German public - also justified as exeptional "emergency" measures - after the burning of the Reichstag and the resulting hysteria - stoked by the Nazis - coming from it.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 8 weeks ago

The problem there, in addition to whether it would work as you said, is that the Obama Administration greatly expanmded the applicability of that exception to make Miranda almost meaningless. For more on that you can read my first comment where I quote the Democracy Now! story or read the story itself at democracynow.org.

MMmmNACHOS's picture
MMmmNACHOS 11 years 8 weeks ago

What you speak of, PALINDROMEDARY, when you talk about those that "detest" the U.S. government for meddling in the political affairs of other soverning nations, and engaging military sanctions/coups on those who refuse(d) a centralized banking system, is what the C.I.A. calls Blow Back.
You can be sure that as long as the U.S. continues to build and expand as an Empire through military force, and C.I.A. coups, we (Americans) will experience more and more threats and attacks here and abroad; by both organized groups and those acting independently. This reality scares the shit out of me! Why!?!? Well mainly because Americans in general are ignorant and vengful, (the two always seem to go hand in hand), and don't understand that the U.S. government has waaaaaaaaaaaay over reached its authority. We seem to think our shit don't stink, and that we are "entitled" because we are Americans...Comply or else! This ideology is very disturbing, especially coming from a culture that is mostly made up of "God fearing Christians", aka "Good Christians".
What also concerns me is that the U.S. government continues to act in a belligerent manner, as if the "ends" continue to justify the "means"; which in regards to todays means are gravely destructive and deadly of innocent lives, sending the message that Life is Cheap! But, and this is a BIG BUT, it's the discern and denial by the majority of informed Americans, that worries me the most. Even here on this thread there are people who are VERY aware of the corrupt and terrorist actions by this government, both foreign and domestic , and do very little, if anything at all, to protest the U.S. government and the corporate agencies that push policy. Don't get me wrong being informed is good, but that alone doesn't really do much...other than offer entertaining discusions and debates.
The sad thing is, the Boston Bombing - and simmilar violence towards innocent people - is the only thing that draws attention (be it negative), and gets people motivated, outraged, and off their asses in protest...Meanwhile the United Corporations of America continue to wheel and deal; dismantleing our Rights as U.S. Citizins, undermining the U.S. Constitution, and disolving the Middle Class, creating fear and hesteria amongst the masses and mobs...Which is exactly what the Untied States of Corporations wants...OBEDIENCE THROUGH FEAR!!! Turn the people against oneanother, and when the dust settles those that are left standing emotionally and mentally drained, will comply.

Anyone notice that while the "man-hunt" was on in Boston, Martial Law was basicly in effect?
The land of the free and the home of the brave is no longer. Today the only people rightfully protesting are those the U.S. deems as terrorist; which is very likely the reason why the only actions Americans take when it comes to protesting, as far as their grievences go, are via blog sites...But now even that could get a person on "The Obama Kill List"!

MMmmNACHOS's picture
MMmmNACHOS 11 years 8 weeks ago

Careful, UNCTARHEELS...What you are wanting is a system that does not require (burdon) the State to "prove beyond a reasonable doubt" a person to be guilty of said charge.

What's your position on "pressure cookers"...Should we restrict their size, or should we just ban them?
What about duffel bags, make them clear, or just ban them?
How about your right to express yourself? Restrict your first ammendment Right to babble and nonsense, or aboloish it all together?
What are your thoughts and feelings regarding the Patriot Act? How about Obama's Kill List without trial? Lastly, what do you choose; Security (oppression) or Freedom (Self autonomy and Rights)? Just like two solids cannot occupy the same space, you can't have absolute security and freedom.
Now be a good boy and take your medicine!

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 11 years 8 weeks ago

Howard L - Thom was on Bill Maher. IMO, he kind of wimped out. Thom more or less agreed. Thom's explanation was the he did not view it as "Crossfire". If he gets back on Bill Maher, we need to push him to treat it as "Crossfire".

steffb503's picture
steffb503 11 years 8 weeks ago

I would like to say just one thing... By reading one his or her Miranda rights does not give someone those rights it simply reminds them of those rights. We all have those rights from day one. Only thing this exception does is limit what can be used in the conviction of the person being arrested.

Thom you of all people should know this.

karlmarx1947's picture
karlmarx1947 11 years 8 weeks ago

I commented on this today on the Big Picture. With Louise a.k.a Thom I am concerned with the Civil rights of Dzhokar indeed while I think his act is reprehensible now that I understand the ostensible reason of why he did what he did, its surprising its very surpirsing more acts are not done every day in the U.S. like the Marathon Bombing. While frequent violence and killing relatively commonplace in the US., we have had Sandy Hook, Colombine, Aurora, Tucson, Dzhokhar's action is a textbook case of Blowback (as coined by Chalmers Johnson) (loosely interpreted), because the American Violence in Afghanistan and Iraq is known. This violence is an example of an individual who identifies with the plight of people our people though our government as irdered by our military inflicts violence on, ostensibly to fight an enemy. In the process there is large amounts of "collateral damage", innocents killed to further our governments ends.

It is not surprising that some idealistic individual who identifies with these people would want to give some American's a taste of their own medicine: i.e. the killing of innocents. The hope is that the people of the U.S. would think a little more before they inflicted violence on others. There are many reasons to condemn such idealism however, one might call it reprehensible, or foolish or even immoral but not stupid or cowardly. The largely immoral U.S. government may seek the death penalty against Dzhokhar which tio my way of thinking is at least as immoral as murder by individuals. I realize this above is not mainstream opinion.

This is not my main point however. In a land where murder by immigrants in particular muslims is viewed as terrorism, the far worse industrial accident in Texas is treated as a ho hum thing. If Dzokhar is a terrorist, isn't the C.E.O of West Fertilizer an industrial terrorist. If the government seeks the death penalty by reason of assault with a weapon of mass destruction, doesn't the ignition and explosion of thousands of gallons of anhydrous ammonia fit the bill as a weapon of Mass Destruction.

In addition, I would argue with Tom that we should go back to the 1890's and enforce the Death Penalty for West Fertilzer. The company should be nationalized its assets sold by the state its workers from its President on Down be fired. The funds which result from this sale should be used as a fund for the victims. The salutory effect of forced liquidation of this company is to hold accountable the prepetetrators and the people who profited from this enterprise. It would lead to less destructive passing on the negative extrernalities of negligent homicide to the rest fo society and would compensate as best as possible with minimal cost to the state the victims of this disaster. This is especially timely in view of Citizens United, if corporations are people then they should be subject to "execution" if they commit particularly heinous crimes. While I personally am not for the dealth penalty in general if we have it it should apply to corporate people as well as individuals. Equal protection under the laws demands an approach like this if Dzhokhar is subject to the death penalty then the Death Penalty for the CEO of West Fertilizer and his company.

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 11 years 8 weeks ago

What you describe should be done with West Fertilizer is very much what Thom describes as the death penalty for corps in the 1890s.

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