Safety... At What Cost?

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin


This section last updated Wednesday, 14-Dec-2005 02:59:50 EST.

Executive Order 13228
Signed October 8, 2001, it established the Office of Homeland Security and the Homeland Security Council.

Homeland Security Flow Chart
Courtesy of the New York Times, view the game plan for government reorganization under the newly-created Office of Homeland Security.

Thank You, Franklin Delano Bush!
What happens when you take George W. Bush's November 8th speech and insert it into a truth translator?

Congress Mulls Stiff Crypto Laws
"The encryption wars have begun. For nearly a decade, privacy mavens have been worrying that a terrorist attack could prompt Congress to ban communications-scrambling products that frustrate both police wiretaps and U.S. intelligence agencies. Tuesday's catastrophe, which shed more blood on American soil than any event since the Civil War, appears to have started that process."

USA Act Stampedes Through, Has Lasting Effects
Our congressmen have been hard at work on legislation that will permit police to conduct secret searches at your home or business, expand the power of the FBI's carnivore spying system, and pretty much end "warrant" requirements and court orders for any type of surveillance. Where is gridlock when you need it?

FBI Plans to Broaden Web Wiretapping
Federal Bureau of Investigation officials want to expand their ability to tap into Internet traffic, even beyond the bounds permitted by controversial new legislation. The FBI has plans to change the architecture of the Internet and route traffic through central servers so that it would be able to monitor e-mail more easily.

Bush Contemplates National I.D. Card for All Citizens
"A highly controversial option has emerged for use in fighting terrorism in the United States: A national ID card which would be issued to every citizen. A proposal for the creation of a national ID card was presented to President Bush in recent days, top government sources tell the DRUDGE REPORT."

States Devising Plan for National Identification Cards
State motor vehicle authorities are working on a plan to create a national identification system for individuals that would link all driver databases and employ high-tech cards with a fingerprint, computer chip or other unique identifier.

Driver's Licenses Could Serve as National IDs
While lawmakers debate the wisdom of requiring Americans to carry national identification documents, some states are already taking steps to use the driver's license for that very purpose. Critics point out that sophisticated terrorists will just forge their documents.

State Officials See Chance for Increased Secrecy
In the worn-out name of battling terrorism, state lawmakers and government officials across the country want to give themselves the power to do some of their governmental work without the public knowing about it. This marks a reversal in the trend of the past three decades.

Airlines Push for Federal ID Cards for Air Travelers
The nation's airlines say they want the federal government to issue identification cards for air travelers. The cards would be "voluntary" for U.S. citizens, but mandatory for aliens living and traveling in the United States.

Oracle Boss Urges I.D. Cards, Offers Free Software
"'We need a national ID card with our photograph and thumbprint digitized and embedded in the ID card,' Ellison said in an interview Friday night on the evening news of KPIX-TV in San Francisco.'"

Panel to Call for National ID Cards
A volunteer panel of current and former law enforcement officials in New York offered 50 ideas for improving security and fighting "terrorism." Among these, the panel recommended the requirement for national identification cards, which would contain a computer chip with digital fingerprints, photographs and retinal scans. Panel members acknowledged that the cost of implementing the long list of suggestions would be "enormous," and some of the ideas would be controversial.

I.D. Cards on the Way, Britain Takes Lead
"Mr Blair and Mr Blunkett are expected to reject the compulsory 'on demand' card because of connotations with Nazi Germany, where lack of proper identity cards could result in instant arrest."

Congress Reopens Debate On National ID Card
Lawmakers who have traditionally favored requiring Americans to carry ID cards see an opportunity to push through their agenda in the wake of the terrorist attacks. They're opposed by legislators (controlled opposition?) who say that such documents threaten liberty and can't prevent terrorism.

Digital Angel Rollout Announced
"Applied Digital Solutions, Inc. announced today that its wholly owned subsidiary, Digital Angel Corporation, has selected Monday, November 26 as its official launch date for Digital Angel, the first-ever combination of advanced biosensor technology and Web-enabled wireless telecommunications linked to Global Positioning."

No Thumbprint, No Rental Car!
Dollar Rent A Car is currently making customers give a thumbprint before they give them the keys, another example of biometrics being used for ID purposes.

Privacy Trade-Offs Reassessed
Objections to surveillance technology face new test after attack.

FBI Developing Virus For Snooping?
"A new tool reportedly being developed by law enforcement agencies to remotely install surveillance programs on a suspect's computer is little more than 3-year-old hacking technology.... On Tuesday, MSNBC reported that the FBI was working on a computer 'virus'.... [T]he technique doesn't use a virus, but a Trojan horse, a program that acts without the person's knowledge."

Anti-Terror Law Puts Business Privacy At Risk
The "anti-terrorism" USA Patriot Act broadly expanded law enforcement surveillance powers, making it easier for the government to demand information from companies for much less cause than in the past. This triggers countless privacy issues for companies, their employees and their customers.

War May Trump Civil Liberties
"Just ... days ago, the notion of police 'profiling' groups by race or ethnicity was considered wrong. But now, to many enraged and frustrated Americans, it's not such a dirty word..."

Poll: Americans Unconcerned By Loss of Liberty
According to a survey by The Washington Post and ABC News, most Americans express little concern that measures taken to combat terrorism may violate the rights of U.S. citizens or others caught up in the ongoing probes.

From the United States of America to the National Security States of America
"In the rush for political expediency, the first two things that are always sacrificed are the hard-won rights and liberties of the people and any notion of fiscal accountability by their government."

Happy New Year! It's 1984
"Americans are about to lose many of their most cherished liberties in a frenzy of paranoid legislation. The government proposes to tap our phones, read our email and seize our credit card records without court order. It seeks authority to detain and deport immigrants without cause or trial. It proposes to use foreign agents to spy on American citizens. To save freedom, the warmongers intend to destroy it."

The 'Patriot Act'
In the name of patriotism and freedom, your liberties are being curtailed. Read the Orwellian legislation and ask yourself who's the real enemy?

Model State Emergency Health Powers Act
"Emergency health threats, including those caused by bioterrorism and epidemics, require the exercise of extraordinary government functions…"

FBI Proposes Torture
U.S. investigators are reportedly considering resorting to harsher interrogation techniques after facing a wall of silence from suspected terrorists. While any evidence extracted by such means is inadmissible in court, and investigators could face prosecution, experts predict that "truth serum" might pass legal muster.

Debate Grows Over Using Torture
Growing numbers of pundits are openly discussing allowing U.S. law enforcement to use torture against suspects. That has critics worrying that perhaps a barrier to the mistreatment of the accused is in danger of falling.

Torture By Proxy
"To the French, Kenneth Starr is known as the "Ayatollah sexuelle," but after his recent comments in The Washington Post suggesting that we should cast aside traditional civil liberties in the fight against terrorism, just plain "Ayatollah" seems more fitting."

Internment Camps Favored By One-Third of New Yorkers
A new poll reveals that one-third of New Yorkers favor establishing internment camps for "individuals who authorities identify as being sympathetic to terrorist causes.

New York City Now A Police State
With security precautions and civil liberty restrictions at an all-time high, even one New York City law-enforcement official admitted, "this is a police state now."

Smallpox Countermeasures Could Quarantine Entire Cities
Public health officials want to shut down roads and airports, herd people into sports stadiums and, if needed, quarantine entire cities in the event of a smallpox attack.

Bush May Order Smallpox Jabs For All
"All Americans could be forced to have smallpox jabs under plans being considered by President Bush, despite fears that such a programme would kill hundreds. Underlining White House fears about America's vulnerability to a new wave of bioterrorism, Mr. Bush said that he was discussing with Tommy Thompson, the Health Secretary, whether to order mandatory vaccinations."

Executive Power Grab?
Two constitutional law attorneys warn that in the wake of the terrorist attack, President Bush and his staff are accumulating power that threatens civil liberties. In 1999, attorneys William J. Olson and Alan Woll produced a study for the Cato Institute on executive power.

White House Push on Security Steps Bypasses Congress
Officials and legal analysts say that the Bush administration has moved swiftly to expand its national security authority and law enforcement powers in ways that are intended to bypass Congress and the courts. Critics worry over the constitutional implications of the moves.

President Accumulates 'Breathtaking' Power
The Sept. 11 "terrorist attacks" and the "war in Afghanistan" have dramatically accelerated a push by the Bush administration to strengthen presidential powers.

Attorney General Accumulates Power
Since Sept. 11, John Ashcroft has emerged as perhaps the most powerful attorney general of modern times. He has moved swiftly — and sometimes unilaterally — to expand the government's already enormous powers in the areas of surveillance and detention.

Accused Terrorists to Face Military Courts
President Bush signed an order that would allow the government to try accused terrorists in front of a special military commission instead of in civilian court. Officials insist that precedents dating to the Civil War and World War II permit such a move.

Bush: I'll Decide!
In the November 26 issue of Newsweek, aides to President George W. Bush state that after he signed an order allowing the use of military tribunals in "terrorist" cases, Bush said that he alone should decide who faces such military courts.

Secretive Court Gets New Powers
When federal officials want to tap a suspect's phone, or secretly send investigators to ransack a suspect's home, they come to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court for nearly automatic approval. Now Congress has given that court controversial new power.

U.S. Admits to Having Tested Bio-Warfare on U.S. Cities
In Senate subcommittee hearings in 1977, the U.S. Army revealed that the Army had staged a mock biological attack on San Francisco, secretly spraying the city with Serratia and other agents they said they thought were harmless. The stated goal: "to see what might happen in a real germ-warfare attack." At least one fatality resulted.

Civil War Era Law Used to Hold Suspects
Prosecutors seeking to hold people they claim are involved in terrorist plots are turning to a very old weapon: the Civil War era law on sedition. The statute gives the government broad power against people who plan but don't carry out acts against the United States.

Feds Monitoring Suspects' Calls to Lawyers
Breaking from the long-standing principle of lawyer-client privacy, the Justice Department is monitoring phone calls and mail between some terrorist suspects and their defense lawyers. "This proposal is a terrifying nightmare for innocent people who are under suspicion by the attorney general," said Laura W. Murphy of the ACLU.

U.S. to Keep Number of Detainees Secret
The Justice Department announced that it will no longer issue a running tally of the number of people detained in the investigation of the September 11 attacks. The move comes as civil liberties groups pressure the government to release information on detainees and allow them access to legal counsel.

Congress Debates Domestic Use of Military
A handful of senators and some in the Bush administration are calling for changes in a U.S. law that bars the military from domestic law enforcement.

War Prompts Debate on Domestic Use of Military
"America is at war, and because it's generally thought that some enemies are within our borders, it makes sense to many to send the Army after them in the interest of homeland security. ... But with few exceptions, letting the military loose for domestic law enforcement has been a criminal act for more than a century." 

UK: Naughty Children to be Registered as Potential Criminals
"The police are to set up a secret database of children as young as three who they fear might grow up to become criminals. ... The controversial initiative is to be pioneered in 11 London boroughs from March and then expanded nationally. Any child who is thought to be at risk of committing a crime by the police, schools or social services, will be put on the database."

Nebraska Freemasons Promote Biometrics for Children
From our Shadow Government section.
Grand Lodge Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of Nebraska are openly advocating biometric identifiers for children, in the name of safety. Biometrics are the forerunner to the implantable microchip, which will ultimately store such information. Is it a coincidence that the program is called "CHIP"? "Interested in sponsoring a Masonic CHIP event?"


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