www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/nsa-growth-fueled-by-need-to-target-terrorists/2013/07/21/24c93cf4-f0b1-11e2-bed3-b9b6fe264871_story.html, posted 2013 by peter in fascism politics privacy terrorism toread usa
Since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, its civilian and military workforce has grown by one-third, to about 33,000, according to the NSA. Its budget has roughly doubled, and the number of private companies it depends on has more than tripled, from 150 to close to 500, according to a 2010 Washington Post count.
Even if I give her the absolute benefit of the doubt—that though I did not take any more pictures she genuinely feared I would be a safety threat to the flight—that does not give her license to state mistruth that impugns my character. And if she was indeed scared of me, how pitiful is that? Indeed, the terrorists have won when 11.5 years after the attacks U.S. citizens are scared of a camera onboard an airplane. This was not an issue of privacy—the real impetus behind United's onboard photography guidelines above. You can see that the picture of my seat did not compromise anyone's privacy. Instead, I believe the FA simply could not fathom why I would want to take pictures of my seat and therefore deemed me a security threat and lied in order to get me off the airplane.
Carnegie Mellon university researchers have developed a surveillance system that can not only recognize human activities but can also predict what might happen next.
Researchers, through the Army-funded research dubbed Mind's Eye, have created intelligent software that recognizes human activities in video and can predict what might just happen next; sounding an alarm if it detects anomalous behavior.
Random patdowns began at 30 international airports across Japan this week.
According to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, the random body searches are being conducted to check for chemical and plastic explosive materials that are not picked up by metal detectors, TBS reported.
Oh good, Japan joins in the fun of groping passengers in the name of security. I feel safer already.
The current TSA measures create an even greater harm: loss of liberty. Airports are effectively rights-free zones. Security officers have enormous power over you as a passenger. You have limited rights to refuse a search. Your possessions can be confiscated. You cannot make jokes, or wear clothing, that airport security does not approve of. You cannot travel anonymously. (Remember when we would mock Soviet-style “show me your papers” societies? That we’ve become inured to the very practice is a harm.) And if you’re on a certain secret list, you cannot fly, and you enter a Kafkaesque world where you cannot face your accuser, protest your innocence, clear your name, or even get confirmation from the government that someone, somewhere, has judged you guilty. These police powers would be illegal anywhere but in an airport, and we are all harmed—individually and collectively—by their existence.
I sin harme over Anders Behring Breiviks ugjerninger overgår de politiske kommentatorene hverandre i å finne uttrykk for sin avsky. Men de bommer når denne avskyen rettes mot Breiviks framtreden i retten. Bildet av en «iskald» Anders Behring Breivik som «ryster og sjokkerer» med sin oppførsel stemmer ikke med virkeligheten.
Den Anders Behring Breivik som sitter i tiltaleboksen i rettssal 250 i Oslo tingrett, er en drapsmann som gjør det han får beskjed om og som svarer samarbeidsvillig og reflekterende på spørsmål. At hans gjerninger 22. juli i fjor ikke er til å begripe, er ikke det samme som at alt han i dag sier og gjør er monstrøst.
Det er et tap for den norske offentligheten at ikke alle interesserte gis anledning til å følge rettsprosessen direkte slik at de selv kunne ha dannet seg et inntrykk av det det som foregår og mannen som sitter tiltalt, uten politiske kommentatorers filtre.
2011 råder det inga tvivel om hur de friserade sanningarna staplades på rad för att driva igenom kriget mot terrorismen och invasionen av Irak. Men där vi åtminstone i Sverige har haft lätt att fälla kritiska omdömen om de ansvariga politikerna för deras agerande, har vi haft så mycket svårare att betrakta nöjesindustrins aktörer som medansvariga för det samhälle som vi nu håller på att skapa. Där vi gång på gång väljer slutenhet i stället för öppenhet och kontroll i stället för frihet.
The US has become estranged from the rest of the world. It is partly its own fault, but the rest of the world also shares some of the blame -- because many only see America as a perpetrator, and no longer regard it as a victim.
This was most evident on the day that bin Laden was killed. Americans cheered spontaneously on the streets when they heard the news. But many people in other parts of the world did not want to celebrate with them. They reacted with agitation to the openly flaunted joy over the terrorist's death. The alienation of the others often sounded patronizing and self-satisfied.
But it underlined the fact that the victims of the attacks were no longer in the foreground. Instead, the sins of the original victim were brought into focus -- America's sins. The superpower, to a large extent, only has itself to blame. But that is still sad nonetheless.
Some neocon idiocrat has found a link between porn and terrorism. Or has she?
Pornography is not a necessary cause of terrorism. The abolition of pornography would not lead to the cessation of terrorism in the world. Terrorism existed well before graphic pornography and its mass spread via the internet.
Likewise, pornography is not a sufficient cause for terrorism. There are pornography users, even addicts, who do not become terrorists. [...]
Yet pornography now appears frequently in the possession of violent terrorists and their supporters, including Osama bin Laden. [...]
I wonder whether the pornography of today-now ubiquitous and increasingly grotesque-is one of the influences warping the mentality of those who aspire to or who actually go on to engage in ever more grotesque public violence.
In other words, she openly admits that porn doesn't actually have anything to do with terrorism. But they both make her angry so, surely, they must still be related somehow.
We might ask ourselves how we would be reacting if Iraqi commandos landed at George W. Bush’s compound, assassinated him, and dumped his body in the Atlantic. Uncontroversially, his crimes vastly exceed bin Laden’s, and he is not a “suspect” but uncontroversially the “decider” who gave the orders to commit the “supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole” (quoting the Nuremberg Tribunal) for which Nazi criminals were hanged: the hundreds of thousands of deaths, millions of refugees, destruction of much of the country, the bitter sectarian conflict that has now spread to the rest of the region.