Eric Allie carton via Townhall
The Guardian: NSA monitored calls of 35 world leaders after US official handed over contacts:
The National Security Agency monitored the phone conversations of 35 world leaders after being given the numbers by an official in another US government department, according to a classified document provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden.
The confidential memo reveals that the NSA encourages senior officials in its “customer” departments, such the White House, State and the Pentagon, to share their “Rolodexes” so the agency can add the phone numbers of leading foreign politicians to their surveillance systems.
The document notes that one unnamed US official handed over 200 numbers, including those of the 35 world leaders, none of whom is named. These were immediately “tasked” for monitoring by the NSA.
The revelation is set to add to mounting diplomatic tensions between the US and its allies, after the German chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday accused the US of tapping her mobile phone.
After Merkel’s allegations became public, White House press secretary Jay Carney issued a statement that said the US “is not monitoring and will not monitor” the German chancellor’s communications. But that failed to quell the row, as officials in Berlin quickly pointed out that the US did not deny monitoring the phone in the past.
The NSA memo obtained by the Guardian suggests that such surveillance was not isolated, as the agency routinely monitors the phone numbers of world leaders – and even asks for the assistance of other US officials to do so.
More sophisticated pols than me think it’s advantageous for us to have this strategic edge over even our allies… But I don’t know how spying on our friends can be morally justified, or ethical or even helpful….. I can see the benefits to our national security when we spy on our enemies. I’m okay with that…I just don’t see how this benefits us. (Plus it’s wrong.)
The Atlantic Wire: Germany and Brazil Will Take NSA Spying Frustrations to the UN:
Germany and Brazil have decided to work together to push a UN resolution aimed at restraining the U.S.’s international surveillance of, among other things, world leaders. While the draft resolution, first reported byForeign Policy, doesn’t directly address the NSA revelations, it’s clearly aimed at U.S. intelligence’s recently revealed spying efforts.
The resolution wouldn’t actually be able to curb the NSA’s surveillance. Instead, it would call for an expansion of international privacy rights under the International Covenant Civil and Political Rights. That agreement was drafted well before the internet, and Germany and Brazil would like to apply its protections specifically to online communication. The two countries met with other European and Latin American officials on Thursday to discuss a draft, which they hope the UN human rights committee will consider later this year. While the draft resolution idea highlights international displeasure with the U.S’s broad data collection, it seems to worry some U.S. officials less than another potential fallout from inconvenient disclosures of the US’s bulk data collection in foreign, including friendly, countries.
Someone jog my memory….wasn’t Obama elected so he could raise our standing in the world after the awful Bush years in which “the world hated us.”
Daily Caller Exclusive: Feds confiscate investigative reporter’s confidential files during raid
Obama’s war on Whistle-blowers is ramping up.
At about 4:30 a.m. on Aug. 6, Hudson said officers dressed in full body armor presented a search warrant to enter the home she shares on the bay with her husband. She estimates that at least seven officers took part in the raid.
After the search began, Hudson said she was asked by an investigator with the Coast Guard Investigative Service if she was the same Audrey Hudson who had written a series of critical stories about air marshals for The Washington Times over the last decade. The Coast Guard operates under the Department of Homeland Security.
Hudson said that investigator, Miguel Bosch, identified himself as a former air marshal official.
But it wasn’t until a month later, on Sept. 10, that Hudson was informed by Bosch that five files including her handwritten and typed notes from interviews with numerous confidential sources and other documents had been taken during the raid.
“In particular, the files included notes that were used to expose how the Federal Air Marshal Service had lied to Congress about the number of airline flights there were actually protecting against another terrorist attack,” Hudson wrote in a summary about the raid provided to TheDC.
Recalling the experience during an interview this week, Hudson said: “When they called and told me about it, I just about had a heart attack.”
She said she asked Bosch why they took the files. He responded that they needed to run them by TSA to make sure it was “legitimate” for her to have them.
“‘Legitimate’ for me to have my own notes?” she said incredulously on Wednesday.
Asked how many sources she thinks may have been exposed, Hudson said: “A lot. More than one. There were a lot of names in those files.”
Andrew Kaczynski, Buzzfeed: The Search For The Mysterious Obamacare Website Girl:
On Oct. 1, Obamacare insurance exchanges went online in all 50 states. The website,HealthCare.gov, was launched despite reported warnings by those overseeing the project that the system was not ready for millions of users to access. The system immediately began to crash. Basic navigation of the website took hours, let alone actually signing up for health insurance.
Frustrated Americans were greeted by one face as they waited.
The hottest mask for Halloween 2013?
The Daily Caller: GOP lawmakers: Internal doc reveals Obama administration seeks to lift 20 year Libyan ban:
Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee have obtained an internal Department of Homeland Security draft final regulation that would lift a 20 year ban on Libyans coming to the US to work in sensitive fields.
The document — highlighted Thursday by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia and Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz — shows that DHS is working to amend its regulations to eliminate the restrictions on Libyan nationals and foreign nationals acting on behalf of Libyan entities from coming to the United States to work in aviation maintenance, flight operations, or to study nuclear-related fields.
“It is shocking that the Obama Administration is turning a blind eye to real terrorist threats that exist in Libya today,” Goodlatte said in a statement. “Just over a year ago, four Americans were killed in the pre-planned terrorist attacks on the American Consulate in Benghazi.”
Nothing this Regime does shocks me, anymore.
Twitchy: Deranged liberals blame Obamacare website failures on nefarious Kochspiracy:
Of course…those evil bastids.
Fresh from the festering fever-swamps of the liberal intellectual wastelands comes the conspiracy so well-hidden there’s absolutely no evidence for it. Tie on your tinfoil hats, comrades, we’re through the looking glass on the evil Kochspiracy
…Check out the tweets.
Newsbusters: Stewart Edits Krauthammer Telling Him ‘You Need My Book Because You Don’t Watch Enough Fox News’
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: Look, you don’t expect a politician to spend half his speech praising the other side. So it’s a matter of time constraints. I have a lot of time.
JON STEWART, HOST: [Laughs]
KRAUTHAMMER: I got the book done, I had 30 years. It’s all, again, it’s in one book. Easy to carry on airplanes
STEWART: I don’t think this is the audience that needs to read it. Give this to Paul Ryan and Ted Cruz. Don’t give it to them [pointing at audience], they know. We’re going to go, will you stick, stick around for a little bit. We’ll continue talking about it.
Unfortunately, Comedy Central viewers missed a great response from Krauthammer that was in the extended online version of this interview but was conspicuously edited out of the cable version (edits in bold):
KRAUTHAMMER: Ryan and Cruz hear me every night.
STEWART: Is that true?
KRAUTHAMMER: They don’t need the book. You need…
STEWART: So they just sit around watching Fox News?
KRAUTHAMMER: You need the book because you don’t watch enough Fox News.
STEWART: Oh God, you’re not, talk about wanting to commit suicide: yes I do. “Things That Matter” is on bookshelves now. Charles Krauthammer. We’ll be back with some more right after this.
Marta Cecilia Aviles Asman, WSJ: Bill de Blasio Should Ask Me About the Sandinistas:
Shortly after Bill de Blasio won the Democratic nomination for New York City mayor in September, his long-ago flirtation with radical governments in Cuba and Nicaragua flared as a campaign issue. But he is far ahead in the polls, and New Yorkers seem to have decided that the matter is not relevant to the job he is now seeking. To me and my family, though, the would-be mayor’s activism hits home. That’s because when Mr. de Blasio was visiting Nicaragua to show his support for the Sandinista government in 1988, my son and I were moving to New York, fleeing that government.
Twenty-five years is a long time, and people change. But on this subject, Mr. de Blasio has made clear that he has not.
Last month, a Cuban-American radio host asked Mr. de Blasio to explain his 1991 honeymoon to Cuba. While acknowledging that there are a “huge number of problems” with the country’s communist government, Mr. de Blasio praised Cuba’s health-care system, saying: “I also think it’s well known that there’s been some good things that happened in that government.”
He has been even more effusive about the Sandinistas, the violent revolutionaries in Nicaragua who overthrew the Somoza regime in 1979 and installed a socialist government that ruled until 1990. Mr. de Blasio told the New York Times recently that the Sandinistas showed a “youthful energy and idealism mixed with a human ability and practicality that was really inspirational.” In the same article, one unrepentant Sandinista activist complained about some Sandinista supporters who later dropped their support for the cause. “Bill wasn’t like that,” she said.
Read it all. Is NYC serious about electing this commie?
Gateway Pundit: Wonderful! Sean Hannity Gives Fired Obamacare Operator Gift of One Year’s Salary (Video):
Earlier this week conservative radio host Sean Hannity called the Obamacare hotline and spoke to an operator.
The operator, Earline Davis, was honest and told Hannity nobody liked the website.
The next day she was fired.
Tonight Sean Hannity had Earline Davis on his television program.
He offered her a check to cover her salary for a year.
He also set up a hotline to help Earline find another job.
What a wonderful segment.
Ann Coulter: Hang One, To Encourage the Others:
One of the most effective ways of discouraging people is to make them think there’s absolutely nothing they can do about something, anyway. Thus, liberals have tried to insinuate that Obamacare is impossible to remove, hoping conservatives will despair.
But with only one-half of one branch of government, Sens. Ted Cruz and Mike Lee and the House Republicans have made it absolutely clear that Republicans are not giving up on repealing Obamacare. Inasmuch as “bubonic plague” is polling higher than “Obamacare,” I’d say this is a brilliant marketing strategy for the GOP.
Unlike every other idiotic government program ever foisted on us by the Democrats, this time Republicans are not rolling over on this illegitimately passed, disastrous legislation. Give Republicans a veto-proof majority in the Senate, America, and they will rid us of this plague. (Without even charging a co-pay!)
Not only that, but Republicans have exposed Democrats as hypocrites who are forcing the rest of the country to live under Obamacare, while shutting down the government rather than live under it themselves.
Twitchy: ‘Not quite the way they sold it’: Kirsten Powers’ insurance premium skyrockets
One News Now: ACLJ: Obama, Dems, media complicit in IRS targeting scandal:
The American Center for Law and Justice announced on Friday it has filed a second amended lawsuit in federal court in Washington, DC, adding additional defendants. David French, senior counsel for the ACLJ, says additional evidence reveals a politically motivated attack on conservative and tea party groups by the IRS because of their political beliefs.
“It really is astonishing when you put together the complete timeline how much IRS action followed directly after some very ugly, very targeted statements by the president of the United States,” the attorney tells OneNewsNow.
Darrell Issa: It cost more than Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn:
Facebook’s first six years of operation: $500 million
Twitter’s first four years of operation: $360 million
LinkedIn’s total operating expenses: $200 million
The new ObamaCare website, HealthCare.us, cost over $500 million over the span of 3 years, and unlike Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, the site isn’t functional nor useful.
As if the cost wasn’t bad enough, the online rollout of ObamaCare has been nothing short of disastrous.
Error messages, crashing pages, and slow loading times has rendered the site nearly useless for most Americans, and “Dave Kennedy, the CEO of information-security company Trusted Sec, estimates that about 20% of Healthcare.gov needs to be rewritten…Kennedy believes fixing the site would probably take six months to a year.“ (CNN Money)
The Daily Caller: Obama flees Obamacare disaster for New York fundraiser:
As his signature piece of legislation rapidly collapses in a painful, costly and humiliating heap, President Barack Obama heads to New York Friday in search of more 2014 campaign funds, leaving his deputies behind to manage the Obamacare debacle.
The president will fly to his two New York fundraisers on Air Force One gratis because he’s also got a quick non-partisan stop at a local high school.
At the school, named Pathways in Technology Early College High School, “the President will tour a classroom and discuss the importance of ensuring that the next generation of middle class American workers and entrepreneurs have the skills they need to compete and win in a global economy,” said his schedule, released late Thursday.