The NSA isn't the only one spying on you...

You local police department may be tracking your every move. A new report from the ACLU shows that automatic license plate readers are snapping photos of our cars, even when we're not speeding or running a red light. And, those photos are being stored in mega databases just like our phone and internet data, which is being captured by the NSA. According to the ACLU, cameras mounted on police cars, bridges, traffic lights, and other objects record the plate number, time, and location for every passing car.

At first, law enforcement agencies only used that information to check for stolen cars, or to act on arrest warrants, but now many police forces are storing those images indefinitely. This information could potentially be used to document where you drive, who you associate with, or even how long you were there. Law enforcement is no longer keeping this information only on those found guilty of a crime, they're storing data on everyone to prove criminal activity at some later date. That's the reason the ACLU is exposing this surveillance program. They say the government shouldn't be watching our every move, just in case we commit a crime later.

As is the case with the NSA surveillance programs, government officials contend that this supposedly-modest invasion of our privacy is necessary to find criminals and keep us safe. However, the ACLU and various privacy advocates do not agree. They say that there is no justifiable reason for the federal government to monitor our phone and internet activity, and no reason our every move should be photographed and stored by local governments.


stecoop01's picture
stecoop01 9 years 46 weeks ago

I have an idea...until all this spying on American citizens has ended, all public and elected officials who condone or agree with spying on American citizens should be forced to wear a cow bell around their necks.

In the meantime, I'll just let a peice of cloth or paper or whatever, hang down over my license plate.

And take up drone shooting as a hobby.

Anybody know what frequencies those drones operate on? It might be more fun to just jam their signals.

SteveS's picture
SteveS 9 years 46 weeks ago

At he end of 2012, I thought the two major issues I had to devote myself to were getting money out of politics (Move to Amend) and fighting climate change (, and while I am and have been active in both, I now see that NSA and police-state spying, the war on whistleblowers, the gutting of our civil liberties, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and--once again--the big banks taking enormous risks are all problems we need to fight just as much as the two I originally had my sights set on.

Why didn't I vote for Jill Stein? Oh well, there's always 2016!

howardb4 9 years 46 weeks ago

"there is no justifiable reason for the federal government to monitor our phone and internet activity"

Unfortunately for American citizens, "justifiable" is defined by the government . Thoughts are twisted, half, or in this government's usage, ¼ truths used attempting to lend some substance to their constant lies about everything. The people for so long now have bought into their rhetoric and have completely ignored the governments criminal behaior. Why Hartman still supports this administration which has outBushed Bush in every way, is beyond my small mind. His support with the others progressives who also still support Obama, ensures the repetition of the status quo. Democrat or Republican makes not one iota of difference. Both parties and the support they receive from congress, from the media, from the talk show hosts, etc. ensures the a long lasting criminal police state, which is in firm control, now.

There has to appear another choice besides a republican and/or a democrat. This system is BROKEN at every level. Judicially, economically, militarily, politically, etc. Any trust garnered by the federal government from Americans, has to be from entranced civilians or from those few who have been rewarded greatly by participating in this American debacle.

bobcox's picture
bobcox 9 years 46 weeks ago

One of the requirements of a dictatorship is the ability to spy on the citizens. A second requirement is to keep secrets from the citizens.

Anything the military wants to keep as secret must be made available to all citizens after some legally determined time period. I think three months for Secret, 6 months for anything rated higher would be appropriate.

Deliberations of cabinet meetings or discussions of alternative policy decisions by the President should be made public after the President is out of office 6 months and no longer. This includes diplomatic negotiations.

All seventeen Security agencies should be disbanded. The CIA economic evaluations of other countries are about the only accurate information it has developed since its creation!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 9 years 46 weeks ago

Has it ever occurred to anyone that the private for profit NSA employees and the non profit law enforcement employees not only spy on us, but are also actually spying on each other? Whether it's just them buying a bag of weed or maybe even driving home drunk from happy hour consistently, the time and place are pretty much on record if they used their car and or phone. Think of the internal blackmail possibilities. Talk about a likely to happen breach in the public trust and security!

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 9 years 46 weeks ago

Senator Elizabeth Warren is a Democrat, as is Senator Patty Murray!

Why can't we Progressives and Democratic Socialists infiltrate the Democratic Party the same way the billionaires are using the Teabaggers to infiltrate the Republican Party?

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 46 weeks ago

Finally, an important topic. Thanks, Thom! Actually, there is an important reason for all this surveillance. A reason most Americans may be aware of but do not wish to address. We are all subjects of a growing Tyranny. Alex Jones to one degree or another is absolutely right. Our once 'free' government has been usurped by Corporate entities bent on the absolute oppression of We the People. Strict surveillance as well as the sowing of discord--ie. The Zimmerman Fiasco of previous topics--is symptomatic and historically characteristic of such political Tyrannies. There are no two ways about it--We The People must put a stop to the Cabal that is destroying our way of life. We are our only hope. Our Defense establishment , despite it's costs, has failed us. We must stand up, now! We must overcome the forces to divide us and unite under the same cause. If we fail, we are finished; and, so is Democracy and our American way of life.

Dale1932's picture
Dale1932 9 years 46 weeks ago

People of a certain age will remember that our popular culture (via television, books, comics, etc.) was filled with constant reminders that evil governments like the Soviet Union, Red China, Nazi Germany, etc. constantly spied on their people. Evil governments (and super-villains) all wanted to "rule the world." Now we see that the United States government spies on its own people in a way that would have made the rulers of the Communist and Nazi states envious. Obama threatens sovereign nations who dare to even THINK about giving asylum to Edward Snowden. The USA wants to rule the world - or maybe it already does. One of our major political parties is basically fascist and the other is spineless. Who is going to save the world from us?

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 46 weeks ago

MMmmNACHOS ~ Gandhi said, "An eye for an eye, and eventually the whole world is blind." Brilliant! Just as brilliant as anything from the New Testament. Bravo for Gandhi! No truer words were ever said!!

And, thanks to you!!!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 46 weeks ago

It's funny how the White House Spokesman and Spokeswoman squirm and sputter inanities repeatedly when addressing questions about whether the Coups in Egypt was in fact a Coups..or something else.

They can be so exact and definite whether or not Snowden or Manning or Assange are traitors, but they can't say exactly what it was that happened in Egypt. They just will not say the word "Coups" as in "Coups d'etat". (It would be illegal for the US to continue funding Egypt with the yearly $1.7 billion if what happened was a "Coups"...which it definitely was!)

Watch them them them commit yet another illegality by redefining what happened when Morsi was kicked out of the Presidency by the military. Morsi, freely elected by the people through a democratic process, was overthrown by a military coups. And despite whether or not this was a largely popular occurrence..(Morsi turned out to be a bit like Obama..the people had a lot of hope for change but the change was not in favor of the people) was still a military coups. What select manipulation of the English language will they use to make it "not a coups"?

What they do in those levels, they do even more so down on our level. They violate our privacy, spy on us, because they claim they are "fighting crime" or "terrorism". The terms "crime" and "terrorism" will be just as manipulated as whatever term they come up with to justify continued aid to Egypt. Because, without providing aid to Egypt, we cannot control Egypt. The words "crime" or "terrorism" will continue to be manipulated by those in power here in the US, just as they have always been.

It reminds me of a cartoon I saw many years ago: a view through the barred windows of this building in the old Soviet Union...where people were praying and reading bibles...the sign on the building was "Prison For the Criminally Insane".

mike 9669 9 years 46 weeks ago

welcome to corporate america, i mean police state america, no i mean drone city!!!

now they want to lock up a young man because he spoke the truth about what the government is doing with phone records. he did nothing wrong!! our government is wrong.

remember what b. franklin said (they who give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety).

G3orjOrr's picture
G3orjOrr 9 years 46 weeks ago

It's time to stand up against a free society. Surveillance guarantees security. I for one am sick and tired of the random movements of an unregulated and unsurveilled populace. It reminds me of nothing so much as the random jittering of molecules or bacteria under a microscope. Disgusting, and disorganized, too. What is the purpose? So much wasted movement. Agitation such as this might have been all right in the ancient past, like 1975, but this is 2013. Now, thanks to the incessant bombardment of insane-ons from outer space, we have terrorists popping up everywhere -- like whack-a-moles. We've got to be ready to whack them down. We need order in society. Lots of order. And vigilance. Constant vigilance. Ever since the traitors, Saul Olinsky and Emmanuel Goldstein, promulgated their subversive doctrines, it's been nothing but chaos and trouble. Were it not for the dedicated, primarily caucasoid guardians of order such as the NSA and Homeland Security, I for one would be worried. Very worried. All the time. Now I can say, without fear of contradiction, patriots unite! Until the war on terror is won, we can trust no one. No one, that is, except for our fully-vetted, peerless and exalted friends in the bunker in Utah. Let us all take a moment to bow now in their general direction. Anyone not bowing will be noted and a permanent record made in the national database.

ptg0's picture
ptg0 9 years 46 weeks ago

Instead of cow bells, I suggest tar and feathers.

I wonder why, with the "sequester" forced on us by an incompetent congress and senate, none of those future tar and feather recipients have been vocal about the 85 BILLION DOLLARS per month printed and given to the wall street criminals?

You would think those deficiet "hawks" or FRAUDS as I like to call them would be more concerned about this welfare plan for millionaires.


ptg0's picture
ptg0 9 years 46 weeks ago

1.7 BILLION per year is chump change. We GIVE wallstreet criminals that obama refused to investigate 85 BILLION PER MONTH.

And still no JOBS PLAN.


MMmmNACHOS's picture
MMmmNACHOS 9 years 46 weeks ago

Gandhi was a true & peaceful man, much like that dude in the new testiment...What was his name???Oh that's right Jesus! ;) Anyway when I was doing my time in prison(3yrs) I did ALOT of reading writing and meditation. I read the Bible, and the Koran (found them both to be parallel and intertwined in their teachings), and a few books written by Thich Nhat Hanh (a Vietnamese Buddhist, who wrote Walking Buddah Walking Jesus), I liked his message about practicing mindfullness in everyday interations. It is amazing how powerful this practice is...The energy that comes from being awake in all that we do. It is my opinion, regardless of who you pray to and put your faith in, that our social problems are do to reacting without mindfull understanding of the situation and consideration for the short and long term affects. That our knee jerk solutions often lead to bigger problems is a true sign that we do not understand the problem in the first place.
I don't blame any one particular race, or political party, or religion, or culture...There is mass greed & lust...corruption everywhere. In our communities, our courts, our churches, or hearts...It is a social disease! Knowing this truth and being mindfull in nonviolent resolve is our only way to salvation. Peace will never come by way of more draco laws, and bombs...Those only lead to more dispare, discrimination, and suffering. The first noble truth in Buddhism is "Life is Suffering" and the other three are; Suffering originates from within ourselves, Suffering can be eliminated, Following a mindful peaceful path will liberate you from suffering.

You are correct in what you say about how we are fooled by the corporate commercial media; to think that our social problems - at least in the case of Andrew Zimmerman & Trayvon Martin - are merely black and white. Even Democracy Now is guilty at times of this, however I give them and other independent news sources lots of credit for digging deeper as well as covering those stories the Big networks ignore and/or make a mockery of; Which is a sure sign of fear and selfdenial.
It takes alot of patience, and practice, and energy to not become a victim of the corporate bullspit and loose site of humanity.

When I was doing my time and could go outside during rec (2 90min periods per day) I would sit and stare passed the armed guards tower and through the chain link fence and razor wire, day dreaming of the day I would be released. Then one day I saw the world in a different light...I realized that I wasn't the one in prison, I had been kicked out of a foolish tawdry society with all its commercial and materialistic garbage for not being a "good boy" and following order. I was free from the grimy win by any means neccessary rat race. Don't get me wrong I never want to be told when I can eat when, I can go out side, when I can shower, or be locked down again. I vowed to never allow myself to become a foolish pawn in this profit over people world. A man made world that forces people to lie, cheat, steal, and kill just to make a buck...And for what???More plastic!?!?Faster Internet!?!?Faster Food!?!?Faster Faster!?!? There is more to life than trying to find was to make it go faster.

It is never to late to change ones way of thinking, to be kind and peaceful, and mindfull, in actions towards ourselves and each other...Even if it is to be your last day on earth. Though I hope for sooner.


Petite fighter's picture
Petite fighter 9 years 46 weeks ago

I am a liberal with centerist leanings and voted for Obama. What I am experiencing, having lived in 3rd World countries, is causing great anxiety in me. Dictators are fearful of the people and must have a system of spying on them. Dictators are the ones who sign secret orders and laws. Dictators bypass their Congress and sign laws that were never considered for the greater number of people. Dictators are the ones who turn to secret courts. Dictators maintain a militarized police force. Does any of this sound familiar? Over 1,000 executive orders signed, promises not to sign NDAA, secert courts and secret court orders enforcing secret laws and the use of drones and other military war zone weaponry now being used on the American people. Yes, I've seen this all before, and now it's happening here.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 46 weeks ago

Petite fighter ~ Thank you for your perspective. I must agree you are right. Only a Tyrant (Dictator if you will) has proper reason to fear the people. Any good King (Leader if you will) has nothing to expect from his subjects except gratitude, loyalty, and respect. Leaders who fear their subjects fear them because they hold them in contempt. The only reason for that is because they are betraying their trust and best interests and robbing them blind. That fear demonstrated by our Government should be of a great cause for concern for us all. Our Government is not interested in protecting us. They lie to us for ulterior motives. To our Government, we are the enemy. If they continue down this path, in time, that fact will be obvious to everyone.

However, it is also important to mention that the Government is only a puppet show. It is the puppeteers that are our main concern. With our form of Government there is a means to regain control of the puppet show; and, thus turn the tide of Tyranny back onto the malicious current puppeteers. Knowing this is what drives the fear behind all this spying and militarization.

dowdotica's picture
dowdotica 9 years 46 weeks ago

9/11 made us what we are today, pathetic and paranoid. land of the free? home of the brave? yeah right. we're really no better then any other third world country anymore and who do we have to thank for it? just sayin'.

N Z Sarah's picture
N Z Sarah 9 years 46 weeks ago

Remember there is an extensive geoengineering program spraying us all as well.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 46 weeks ago

For the NSA, cracking codes is usually not even needed, they use that as a last resort. It is so much easier to read your plain text messages, on your computer, even before you encrypt it.

Here is a quote from the author, Steve Blank, of this article, "Your Computer May Already Be Hacked--NSA Inside?" as displayed on Blank is a former military electronics expert, serial entrepreneur, and currently Professor of Entrepreneurship at Stanford:

Quote article:The NSA has a history of figuring out how to get to messages before or after they are encrypted. Whether it was by putting keyloggers on keyboards and recording the keystrokes or detecting the images of the characters as they were being drawn on a CRT.

Today every desktop and laptop computer has another way for the NSA to get inside.

Intel Inside

How does anyone know whether or not the microcode updates to our microprocessors contains NSA spyware? Those updates are encrypted and unless you are able to decrypt and then read and understand the code, you just cannot know if this is being done. We just cannot tell whether or not a "backdoor" has been put on all of our computers. Such microprocessor code would not be detectable by rootkit detection techniques.

Another way the NSA could compromise our computers wouldn't even need to use Intel microprocessor updates. All they would have to do is to inject malware that would compromise our encryption keys or make our "pseudo-random" generators really, really pseudo making it very easy for the NSA to decrypt our encrypted messages.

Note: some of the responses to Steve's article have some very good ideas as ways to defeat being spied on by the NSA or anyone else.

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