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51  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Brothers Forever on: May 25, 2014, 01:55:45 PM
With respect:

http://parade.condenast.com/297011/barryyeoman/brothers-forever-how-two-friends-came-to-rest-side-by-side-at-arlington-national-cemetery/



52  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The US Congress; Congressional races on: May 25, 2014, 01:53:10 PM
The less congress does, the better.

I am intrigued by this. It has seemed to me for a long time that the less Congress does, the wider the opportunity for presidential impact on policy. And given your view of the current president, I will admit to being confused here.
53  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Final Word on U.S. Law Isn’t on: May 25, 2014, 11:53:05 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/25/us/final-word-on-us-law-isnt-supreme-court-keeps-editing.html?_r=1

From the article:

Unannounced changes have not reversed decisions outright, but they have withdrawn conclusions on significant points of law. They have also retreated from descriptions of common ground with other justices, as Justice Sandra Day O’Connor did in a major gay rights case.
54  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / How a bill becomes a law: The DATA Act on: May 24, 2014, 01:33:59 PM
http://www.vox.com/2014/5/22/5723878/how-a-bill-becomes-a-law-in-2014

From the article:

... the DATA Act's success was often imperiled — and during which an already modest law became even weaker. It's a saga that includes lobbying, leaks to the press, bureaucratic sabotage, and last-minute twists. And crucially, it involves compromise after compromise. Put together, the story offers a new guide not just to how a bill can become a law — but why so few actually become laws, and why the ones that do are often so disappointing. In that way, it's an updated Schoolhouse Rock lesson for our polarized, dysfunctional Congress.
55  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Chinese Special Forces Take 1st, 2nd And 4th Place on: May 24, 2014, 01:10:16 PM
http://www.popsci.com/blog-network/eastern-arsenal/chinese-special-forces-take-1st-2nd-and-4th-place-%E2%80%9Colympics%E2%80%9D-elite?src=SOC&dom=fb

From the article:

Since 2010, Chinese delegations have rocketed to the top of international special operations, police and military sniper competitions, benefiting from increased training and better weapons.  It is important to note, however, that many top special operations units were not present at this training competition (including notable US and Russian forces presently active on operations) and that the kind of skills tested in the Warrior Competition form only part of special operations and counterterrorism capabilities.
56  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / From the Jackson List on: May 23, 2014, 02:04:39 PM
In the United States in 1909, the Memorial Day national holiday, also known as Decoration Day, fell on Monday, May 31st.

The President of the United States, William Howard Taft, delivered an address on the battlefield at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

In New York City, over 100,000 people lined Riverside Drive, cheered 15,000 parading veterans of the Civil War and the Spanish War, and attended exercises at the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument.  The Governor of New York, Charles Evans Hughes, delivered an address at Grant’s Tomb.  Governor Hughes earlier had reviewed a large parade in Brooklyn.  The Bronx also hosted comparable exercises—its largest parade ever.
 
Memorial Day commemorations involving smaller crowds and less prominent speakers also occurred in cities and towns across the United States.

In the village of Frewsburg in southwestern New York State, Memorial Day exercises began with a parade.  A column of people marched from Main Street to a wooden structure, Frewsburg’s Union Free School.  With seven classrooms and a library, the Union School offered an elementary course.  It also offered, as it had since 1896, a high school course.  The high school met in a large room on the top floor.  The School’s total enrollment was about 200 students.  The high school senior class numbered less than 20.
 
On that Memorial Day in Frewsburg, Union School pupils and teachers joined the parade.  It wound from the village to its cemetery, where a program was held.  Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and an honor roll of soldiers were read to the crowd.
 
A leading attorney, Walter Henry Edson of nearby Falconer, New York, delivered the principal speech.  Edson spoke about the Civil War, and about peace movements.  He emphasized that universal peace cannot occur until there is universal justice.
 
Robert Houghwout Jackson, then age 17, was one of the student marchers and listeners.  A few weeks later, he graduated as Frewsburg High School’s valedictorian.  Four years later, he became Edson’s colleague at the bar.  They later became law practice partners.

In time, including on the Memorial Day in 1946 that Justice Robert H. Jackson spent in Europe as chief U.S. prosecutor of Nazi war criminals, he made his contributions to universal justice and, he hoped, to peace.

Today, Justice Jackson’s remains rest in that same Frewsburg cemetery, the Maple Grove Cemetery.

It currently is adorned with many United States flags honoring men and women who died while serving in U.S. armed forces, and also honoring U.S. military veterans.

57  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Saving Privacy on: May 20, 2014, 11:35:06 AM
http://www.bostonreview.net/forum/reed-hundt-saving-privacy

"By pooling these data with the communications records it has been collecting since the spread of mobile phone networks two decades ago, the U.S. government has assembled the largest, if least visible, database in the world. It has given a million people security clearances. It has invested billions of dollars in software and hardware to analyze the data. It is constantly launching new code to comb the data for patterns that might reveal who is planning what terrible act against our country’s interests."


58  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: US-China (& Japan, South China Sea-- Vietnam, Philippines, etc) on: May 19, 2014, 03:43:02 PM
I doubt we are trying to steal technological secrets from China to hand off to US industry. Not yet anyway.

Agree.  I see the distinction.  I wonder if Angela Merkel and others complaining of US spying see it.

Rogers and Ruppersberger Call Chinese Indictment an “Important First Step”

House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers and Ranking Member Dutch Ruppersberger praised the indictment by a U.S. Grand Jury in the Western District of Pennsylvania of five Chinese military hackers for computer hacking and economic espionage directed at six American companies.

“These charges are an important first step, both in terms of bringing these five individuals to justice, as well as holding the Chinese government accountable for its campaign of cyber economic espionage against American companies. This is just the tip of the iceberg -- there are thousands of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) hackers working every day, at the behest of the Chinese government, to steal American trade secrets and the jobs that result from our innovation.   We must hold Beijing accountable and pressure the Chinese government to stop manipulating the free market through its use of cyber economic espionage. While every nation collects information to protect itself, it is unacceptable for any nation to steal intellectual property simply to get rich at other nations’ expense. ”
59  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Waiting for Ruth Bader Ginsburg to retire? on: May 19, 2014, 03:41:29 PM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2014/05/19/waiting-for-ruth-bader-ginsburg-to-retire-keep-waiting/

From the article:

The U.S. Supreme Court provides one of the more ironic dynamics in politics: people calling for the retirement of justices with whom they agree. Pressure to retire has been directed at Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer by some who fear that the 81- and 75-year-old justices will not survive a potential Republican presidency that begins in 2017. Some want Ginsburg and Breyer to retire before the end of Barack Obama’s second term, or possibly even sooner, in case Democrats lose control of the Senate in the midterm election. But the behavior of past justices indicates that this pressure may be for naught.  Justices rarely hasten their retirement.
60  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / U.S. to announce first criminal charges against China for cyberspying on: May 19, 2014, 08:37:57 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-to-announce-first-criminal-charges-against-foreign-country-for-cyberspying/2014/05/19/586c9992-df45-11e3-810f-764fe508b82d_story.html?wpisrc=al_national

From the article:
The Justice Department is charging members of the Chinese military with conducting economic cyber-espionage against American companies, U.S. officials familiar with the case said Monday, marking the first time that the United States is leveling such criminal charges against a foreign country.
61  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Four Articles of Interest on: May 15, 2014, 09:36:20 AM

http://www.whiteoliphaunt.com/duckofminerva/2014/05/the-evitability-of-killer-robots.html

"MAC’s memo focuses on blinding lasers because of the diplomatic analogies between today’s meeting and that earlier CCW process, but there are even earlier examples of emerging military technologies being banned early and quickly for humanitarian reasons. In fact, the first weapon ever to be subject to a multi-lateral treaty ban was banned before it was widely deployed: the expanding or “dum-dum” bullet. Dum-dums were designed to flatten upon impact and thus created superfluous wounds. Exploding bullets, whose horrors were evident after the American Civil War, were banned even earlier with the St. Petersburg Declaration. Flattening bullets or “dum-dums” were developed in the late 19th century and were quickly banned outright by the Hague convention of 1899 before they were widely used on the international battlefield (though they had been used in British colonial wars). According to Robin Copeland and Dominique Loye, the ban has been widely adhered to, though according to Wikipedia they remain in use for hunting and (perhaps ironically) in police operations. At any rate, they too represent a case of an emerging military technology with clear utility that was abandoned through international declaration before they were widely used."
62  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Four Articles of Interest on: May 15, 2014, 06:43:57 AM
http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/141407/denise-garcia/the-case-against-killer-robots

http://www.whiteoliphaunt.com/duckofminerva/2014/05/robot-soldiers-would-never-rape-un-packing-the-myth-of-the-humanitarian-war-bot.html

http://www.fpa.org/great_decisions/index.cfm?act=topic_detail&topic_id=34

http://www.ibtimes.com/drone-found-crashed-south-korea-day-after-north-korea-slammed-drone-investigations-south-1584026
63  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / M. Rogers on isolationism on: May 14, 2014, 10:45:03 AM
Washington, DC – Yesterday evening, House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) Chairman Mike Rogers gave the first in his summer speaking series addressing current and future threats facing the United States and the policies needed to confront those threats.  Upon receiving the Eisenhower Award from the Business Executives for National Security in Washington, DC, Chairman Rogers delivered a speech titled “Isolationism’s Threat to American Security and Prosperity.” Chairman Rogers highlighted President Dwight Eisenhower’s robust commitment to international engagement and the lessons we can draw for today. 

The text of the speech is available at http://intelligence.house.gov/sites/intelligence.house.gov/files/documents/BENS.pdf
64  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Humor/WTF on: May 13, 2014, 07:29:08 AM
Pretty amusing:

http://deadstate.org/here-are-31-of-the-most-ironic-moments-ever-caught-on-camera/
65  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Incomplete Collection of the Journals of the Continental Congress on: May 12, 2014, 10:33:43 PM
So damn cool!!!!!

http://www.constitution.org/uslaw/cont-cong/journals.html
66  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Prayer and Daily Expression of Gratitude on: May 09, 2014, 08:54:40 AM
Woof Guide Dog: I love seeing you post again here! I will hope that your momentum continues.

I am grateful for the close of the busiest academic year of my career. I am grateful for the opportunities that the summer holds. I am grateful for the students who taught me much and who are graduating. And I am grateful for the time to pursue my art.
67  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Obama executive action on: May 09, 2014, 08:30:01 AM
This is an interesting tandem of articles related to Obama's executive actions.

http://thehill.com/regulation/205660-obama-flexing-executive-muscle-on-immigration

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/obama-concedes-executive-actions-have-limited-success/2014/05/08/2b7ad718-d708-11e3-95d3-3bcd77cd4e11_story.html?wpisrc=nl_politics
68  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / NATO expansion on: May 08, 2014, 12:32:36 PM
Also from National Interest, and may be of interest here:

http://nationalinterest.org/feature/bad-move-further-nato-expansion-10350
69  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / The Lessons of Town of Greece v. Galloway for Campaign Finance Laws - See more a on: May 08, 2014, 12:19:19 PM
http://schultzstake.blogspot.com/2014/05/the-lessons-of-town-of-greece-v.html

70  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional Law and related matters) on: May 06, 2014, 02:46:12 PM
Probably written by a clerk.
71  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / DOJ's 'Operation Choke Point' May Be Root of Porn Star Bank Account Closings on: April 29, 2014, 03:47:44 PM
By request of Guro Crafty:

http://reason.com/blog/2014/04/28/doj-operation-chokepoint-and-porn-stars

Seemingly not concrete yet, but the hypothetical link is interesting. From the article:

"The very premise is clearly chilling—the DOJ is coercing private businesses in an attempt to centrally engineer the American marketplace based on it's own politically biased moral judgements. Targeted business categories so far have included payday lenders, ammunition sales, dating services, purveyors of drug paraphernalia, and online gambling sites."
72  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / DOJ's 'Operation Choke Point' May Be Root of Porn Star Bank Account Closings on: April 29, 2014, 02:35:01 PM
http://reason.com/blog/2014/04/28/doj-operation-chokepoint-and-porn-stars

Seemingly not concrete yet, but the hypothetical link is interesting. From the article:

"The very premise is clearly chilling—the DOJ is coercing private businesses in an attempt to centrally engineer the American marketplace based on it's own politically biased moral judgements. Targeted business categories so far have included payday lenders, ammunition sales, dating services, purveyors of drug paraphernalia, and online gambling sites."
73  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Justice Breyer’s intriguing suggestions in Hussain on: April 29, 2014, 02:20:23 PM
http://justsecurity.org/2014/04/23/justice-breyers-intriguing-suggestion-hussain-sign-habeas-challenges-come/

From the article:

In the post-Boumediene habeas cases, the government has argued, and the habeas courts have agreed, that being part of al Qaeda or Taliban forces is, in and of itself, sufficient for AUMF detention.  And that’s (at most) all the government demonstrated in Hussain — that the individual had been a part of Taliban forces.  The government did not try to demonstrate that Hussain had engaged in any belligerent acts or otherwise been involved in the armed conflict against the United States.

As Justice Breyer notes, however, the Supreme Court has never actually opined on whether being a member of Taliban forces, standing alone, is sufficient for AUMF detention.  Justice O’Connor’s controlling plurality opinion in the leading case, Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, held only that the AUMF authorized military detention of (in her words) “an individual who . . . was part of or supporting forces hostile to the United States or coalition partners in Afghanistan and who engaged in an armed conflict against the United States there” (emphasis added).
74  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Court springs into action on: April 28, 2014, 08:47:50 AM
http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/204497-tipping-the-scales

From the article:

"... while the first and second branches of the federal government have fallen into quiescence, it’s springtime at the third branch and its justices are delivering decisions on big, controversial issues such as campaign finance and affirmative action. By the end of June, the justices will rule on the constitutionality of Obama- Care’s birth-control mandate."
75  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / G. Will on constitutional interpretation on: April 19, 2014, 10:10:56 AM
Guro, I think you will appreciate this:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/george-will-progressives-are-wrong-about-the-essence-of-the-constitution/2014/04/16/7c05aa00-c4ac-11e3-bcec-b71ee10e9bc3_story.html
76  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / drone finds village on: April 19, 2014, 10:06:00 AM
http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/us/2014/04/17/dnt-drone-discovers-village-in-new-mexico.krqe.html
77  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Google getting in on the drone action on: April 19, 2014, 10:05:27 AM
And Facebook is too.

78  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Jews ordered to register in east Ukraine on: April 17, 2014, 01:11:07 PM
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2014/04/17/jews-ordered-to-register-in-east-ukraine/7816951/?csp=fbfanpage

From the article:

Jews in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk where pro-Russian militants have taken over government buildings were told they have to "register" with the Ukrainians who are trying to make the city become part of Russia, according to Ukrainian and Israeli media.

Jews emerging from a synagogue say they were handed leaflets that ordered the city's Jews to provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee "or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated," reported Ynet News, Israel's largest news website.

Or, perhaps not:

http://www.newrepublic.com/article/117415/relax-ukraine-not-ordering-its-jews-register
79  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "a do-nothing Congress is a conservative’s best-case scenario" on: April 09, 2014, 11:46:07 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/us-policy-has-gone-liberals-way-for-70-years/2014/04/08/8dffa2b2-b906-11e3-9a05-c739f29ccb08_print.html

From the article:

In response, conservatives make two simple claims: Most policies under debate are liberal, and Republican leaders sacrifice conservative principles when they compromise. History shows they are right on both counts
80  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / U.S. and Israel Said to Be Near Agreement on Release of Spy on: April 01, 2014, 10:43:50 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/02/world/middleeast/jonathan-pollard.html?hp&_r=1   huh huh
81  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Common Core on: March 31, 2014, 01:32:58 PM
Oppose Common Core with all your energy.  And when it comes back under some other name, oppose that too.

I do NOT like Common Core, Sam-I-am.

https://twitter.com/ColetteMoran/status/395967716382629889/photo/1
82  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Our Troops in Action on: March 24, 2014, 08:05:48 PM
A different type of story:

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/03/23/flat-stanley-home-safe-after-decade-in-soldiers-wallet-/6762359/?csp=fbfanpage


"...whenever you feel despair or emptiness setting in, remember a saying I learned in the Army — 'If you ever get to the point where it's hopeless and nothing more can be done, you've overlooked something.'"
83  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Young Republicans OK with gay marriage on: March 11, 2014, 10:31:42 AM
From the article:

Sixty-one percent of Republican-leaning adults ages 18-29 say they favor allowing gays and lesbians to marry legally, according to a Pew Research Center study released Monday. That number sharply contrasts the views of the party’s older members, for whom gay marriage support drops off sharply at each age increment.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/03/young-republicans-gay-marriage-poll-104517.html#ixzz2vfW3kUAn
84  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politics on: March 09, 2014, 12:56:45 PM
And your point is taken, too. Thanks for the links. I'll try to get to a few (at least) this week.
85  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / minority outreach at CPAC on: March 08, 2014, 06:38:18 AM
http://www.brookings.edu/blogs/fixgov/posts/2014/03/06-cpac-2014-minority-outreach-panel-hudak
86  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Ukraine on: March 07, 2014, 11:42:12 AM
Read in tandem, these seem interesting to me:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/charles-krauthammer-obamas-inaction-enables-putins-grab-for-ukraine/2014/03/06/c4222690-a55f-11e3-84d4-e59b1709222c_print.html

http://www.nationaljournal.com/magazine/obama-s-leverage-over-putin-20140306
87  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Political marriage between Christie and Obama breaks up on: March 07, 2014, 11:27:56 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/political-marriage-between-chris-christie-and-president-obama-breaks-up-over-sandy-aid-rift/2014/03/06/070627ae-a47f-11e3-8466-d34c451760b9_story.html?wpisrc=nl_politics

Sounds like he is trying make a run for it...

From the article:

“These were never two guys who could sit down in a bar and watch the game on TV,” said former New Jersey governor Richard Codey (D). “The relationship was symbiotic, and now it’s gone.”

Obama’s team has played down talk of a split. “Since the day Hurricane Sandy made landfall, the president has been determined to put politics aside and coordinate with local officials to meet the needs of those Americans who were impacted by the storm,” said Bobby Whithorne, a White House spokesman. “We appreciate Governor Christie’s close coordination during the ongoing recovery, and we hope it will continue.”

88  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: God Bless my Mom on: March 07, 2014, 11:25:31 AM
With condolences and respect, my friend.

89  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Military Science and Military Issues on: March 02, 2014, 06:55:25 PM
I have no words for how cool this is:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/bennyjohnson/inside-the-armys-spectacular-hidden-treasure-room
90  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Kepler telescope doubles number of known planets outside solar system on: February 26, 2014, 08:44:56 PM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/nasa-kepler-telescope-doubles-number-of-known-planets-outside-solar-system/2014/02/26/e83af186-9ee0-11e3-9ba6-800d1192d08b_story.html

From the article:

“We’ve almost doubled today the number of planets known to humanity,” said Jack Lissauer, a NASA planetary scientist, announcing the discovery during a teleconference Wednesday with reporters. The findings will be published in March in two scientific papers in the Astrophysical Journal.
91  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, "discrimination", & discrimination. on: February 26, 2014, 02:49:13 PM
Too bad the article does not have the courage to actual say what the words in question were.


Agreed.
92  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Intel Matters on: February 26, 2014, 01:23:41 PM
NSA watchdog: Snowden should have come to me
Politico
Darren Samuelsohn
25 February 2014

The National Security Agency’s top watchdog slammed Edward Snowden on Tuesday for failing to follow official protocol in relaying his concerns about wayward intelligence gathering and also faulted Congress for not vetting the details of post-9/11 surveillance programs.

“Snowden could have come to me,” George Ellard, the NSA’s inspector general, said during a panel discussion hosted by the Georgetown University Law Center.

Ellard, making his first public comments in seven years working for NSA, insisted that Snowden would have been given the same protections available to other employees who file approximately 1,000 complaints per year on the agency’s hotline system.

“We have surprising success in resolving the complaints that are brought to us,” he said.

In Snowden’s case, Ellard said a complaint would have prompted an independent assessment into the constitutionality of the law that allows for the bulk collection of Americans’ telephone metadata. But that review, he added, would have also shown the NSA was within the scope of the law.

“Perhaps it’s the case that we could have shown, we could have explained to Mr. Snowden his misperceptions, his lack of understanding of what we do,” Ellard said.

And if Snowden wasn’t satisfied, Ellard said the NSA would have then allowed him to speak to the House and Senate intelligence committees.

”Given the reaction, I think somewhat feigned, of some members of that committee, he’d have found a welcoming audience,” Ellard said in a reference to outspoken NSA critics on the panel, including Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Mark Udall (D-Colo.).

“Whether in the end he’d have been satisfied, I don’t know,” Ellard added. “But allowing people who have taken an oath to protect the constitution, to protect these national security interest, simply to violate or break that oath, is unacceptable.”

The NSA inspector general is the latest high-ranking U.S. national security official to publicly condemn Snowden, the former contractor granted asylum last summer by Russia after stealing what the NSA estimates are upwards of 1.5 million classified documents and leaking them to select journalists.

While also criticizing Snowden, President Barack Obama has said the disclosures have prompted a necessary debate between protecting national security and safeguarding their privacy. Ellard said he too welcomed that debate, but argued that Snowden’s moves were “the wrong way to do it” because the stolen documents also gave America’s enemies a blueprint for how the country tries to safeguard against terrorist attacks.

“The losses…were not the result of some wacko bureaucrat wanting to classify everything and anything,” he said. “If I were to be able to speak more specifically about these particular documents I think you’d agree with me [that] yes, there’s absolutely good reason that they should be classified at the highest levels.”

Ellard praised Congress for conducing extensive oversight — he has four staffers assigned over the next year to review the legality of several programs in response to a query from the Senate Judiciary Committee — but he also complained that lawmakers hadn’t done their homework either.

Here, he cited a recently declassified opinion from the federal court that oversees NSA programs where Judge Claire Eagan highlighted the role that lawmakers could have played in attending top-secret briefings on the bulk collection program.

”Now that should have led to some sort of discussion,” Ellard said. “The fact that it did not is certainly not the blame of the intelligence community.”

David Cole, a Georgetown law professor speaking on the same panel as Ellard, pushed back at the NSA official’s explanation that Snowden could have followed the official channels to raise his concerns. That review, he said, wouldn’t have gotten him anywhere and the public debate would never have started.

“I think it was appropriate in telling the American public and no one else had done it,” Cole said. “George [Ellard] hadn’t done it despite his independent constitutional reviews. The courts hadn’t done it despite their independent reviews. The executive branch hadn’t done it. Congress hadn’t done it. Somebody has to do it.

Cole said there’s no dispute that Snowden’s moves were illegal, but he added, “There couldn’t have been a debate without a leak.”
93  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBT, "discrimination", & discrimination. on: February 26, 2014, 01:10:59 PM
I don't know if Nugent is a racist or not, but this is not the first time there have been public utterances that led to questions:

http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/ted-nugent-uses-slurs-in-radio-interview-gets-kicked-off-the-air/
94  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Sen. Rand Paul on: February 26, 2014, 11:45:13 AM
I think the question for Paul, at least as it relates to the 2016 presidential election, should be: will this attract voters. It might play a part in a win in the primary, but I suspect (but don't know) that it will not attract the "average" voter. Moreover, I suspect that the stance will likely repel that voter. And if you can't appeal to the average, you can win the general.
95  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Law Enforcement issues and LE in action on: February 26, 2014, 11:03:51 AM
This is an example of understanding the acronym:

DWI: driving while impaired, which he seems to have been, perhaps because of a lack of sleep
DUI: driving under the influence (of a testable substance)
96  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Bobby Jindal comes out swinging on: February 26, 2014, 08:44:43 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/kathleen-parker-bobby-jindal-waves-war-flag/2014/02/25/4ee4a9ce-9e5d-11e3-a050-dc3322a94fa7_story.html

From the article:

Of course he’s running for president in 2016. He hasn’t said so, but he clearly is. His actions speak far louder than his words. Given this obvious fact, Jindal can’t start too soon demonstrating his older, wiser, more experienced persona. He has to be aggressive to convince the Republican base that he’s a stand-up guy willing to jump in the ring with Apollo Creed. Okay, so maybe with Dannel Malloy.

This isn’t such an easy sell for the slightly built Rhodes scholar who became the nation’s youngest governor. And though Jindal is a Catholic convert — and he speaks with the natural lilt of his birth state of Louisiana — he is not visually “one of us” in the way some Republicans have demonstrated they’re most comfortable. To the birther sensibility, if President Obama was born in Kenya, then Jindal could be from Punjab. In fact, he was conceived there but born in Baton Rouge.
97  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Supreme Court rules in favor of police in home searches without objector presen on: February 26, 2014, 08:36:33 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/supreme-court-rules-in-favor-of-police-in-home-searches-without-objector-present/2014/02/25/7bc1bb6a-9e5a-11e3-b8d8-94577ff66b28_story.html

From the article:

“An occupant who is absent due to a lawful detention or arrest stands in the same shoes as an occupant who is absent for any other reason,” Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote for the majority.
98  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Supreme Court rules in favor of police in home searches without objector presen on: February 26, 2014, 08:35:58 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/supreme-court-rules-in-favor-of-police-in-home-searches-without-objector-present/2014/02/25/7bc1bb6a-9e5a-11e3-b8d8-94577ff66b28_story.html

From the article:

“An occupant who is absent due to a lawful detention or arrest stands in the same shoes as an occupant who is absent for any other reason,” Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote for the majority.
99  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / A tale of two countries on: February 25, 2014, 09:39:32 AM
http://www.economist.com/blogs/easternapproaches/2014/02/ukraines-crisis

From the article:

One of the most important European trading and university cities since the 14th century, modern Lviv has been Soviet Lvov, Polish Lwów and Austro-Hungarian Lemberg in the past 100 years. It was seized by the Soviet Union in 1939 but guerilla resistance was intense, and broken only in the 1950s. Lviv’s sense of its own belonging in Europe was supported by its architecture and its history of resistance to the Soviet rule. It jubilantly supported the Orange revolution in 2004 and was bitterly disillusioned by the failure of that revolution’s leaders, notably Viktor Yushchenko to modernise and reform the country in the years that followed.
100  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / GOP lobbyist drafts bill to ban gay athletes from playing in the NFL on: February 25, 2014, 09:38:03 AM
http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/02/24/powerful-gop-lobbyist-drafts-bill-to-ban-gay-athletes-from-playing-in-the-nfl/

From the article:

According to the statement, the idea for a Congressional ban on gay athletes in the NFL came to him after he watched coverage of Michael Sam’s decision to come out of the closet prior to the NFL draft. In recent weeks, Sam has been praised by many Democratic lawmakers, as well as First Lady Michelle Obama, who called him “an inspiration.”
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