Hawksbill Turtle

via SocialFoto.

Early morning dive and a Hawksbill Turtle cruises by to have a feed on the reef.

Thailand. Similan National Marine Park. Three Trees. by johnback73


Violet-eared Waxbill (Granatina granatina | Ian White | Flickr – Photo Sharing!)

via birds of a feather.

Violet-eared Waxbill  (Granatina granatina) | by Ian N. White

For anyone who wants a simple proof that Palestine existed before 1948…

via Progressive Friends – munapalestine: For anyone who wants a simple….


For anyone who wants a simple proof that Palestine existed before 1948, here’s a coin from 1927 worth 10 Mils (this currency is no longer used). Also note that the word “Palestine” is written in both Arabic and Hebrew indicating not only a Jewish presence, but a prominent one. Jews and Arabs DID live side by side in peace. The Zionist idea that they cannot coexist is an absolute fallacy.

(via androphilia)


How the Government Will Spy on You If the Patriot Act Dies

via Sustainable Prosperity, phroyd: According to Wikileaks, only 2% of the….


According to Wikileaks, only 2% of the Patriot Act has Officially Expired.

The story being spun by the defenders of Section 215 of the Patriot Act and the Obama Administration is that if the law sunsets entirely, the government will lose critical surveillance capabilities. The fearmongering includes President Obama, who said: “heaven forbid we’ve got a problem where we could’ve prevented a terrorist attack or could’ve apprehended someone who was engaged in dangerous activity but we didn’t do so.”

So how real is this concern? Not very. Section 215 is only one of a number of largely overlapping surveillance authorities, and the loss of the current version of the law will leave the government with a range of tools that is still incredibly powerful.

First, there’s the most famous use of Section 215—the bulk collection of telephone records by the NSA. Of course, no matter what law the government relies on, bulk surveillance is unconstitutional. But equally importantly, it doesn’t work.

Every assessment about the bulk collection of telephone records, including two by hand-picked administration panels, have concluded that “collecting it all” hasn’t materially aided any terrorism investigation. The same goes for other still-secret bulk surveillance programs under Section 215, the latest evidence of which came in a recently released oversight report by the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG).

And then there’s the matter of targeted investigations. The ACLU’s Jameel Jaffer has explainedthat this too is scaremongering, because “the sunset of Section 215 wouldn’t affect the government’s ability to conduct targeted investigations of terrorist threats.” That’s because even without Section 215, the government still has broad powers to collect information during its national security investigations. EFF believes that many of these laws can be scaled back and made more transparent as well, but given the current situation, these are the tools in the national security investigators’ toolbox:

Pen Registers: These allow the government to collect “dialing, routing, addressing, or signaling information” including telephone numbers dialed and Internet metadata such as IP addresses and email headers. There are two pen register statutes, one for foreign intelligence surveillance and one for law enforcement. Both rely require only that the pen register be likely to obtain information relevant to a national security or criminal investigation respectively. Until the end of 2011, the NSA used the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) pen register statute to conduct mass surveillance of Internet metadata, much as it still uses Section 215 for mass collection of telephone records.

The Pre-Patriot Act Business Records Provision: Before the passage of the Patriot Act in 2001, FISA contained a provision allowing the government to obtain business records from transportation carriers and storage facilities. Harley Geiger of the Center for Democracy and Technology has pointed outthat under a June 1 sunset, FISA would simply revert to this provision.

An ECPA “D Order”: Under Section 2703(d) of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA), the government can get a court order for information from ISPs or other communications providers about their customers, including the sorts of metadata the government gets with Section 215. To get a D Order, the government must provide “specific and articulable facts showing that there are reasonable grounds to believe that … the records or other information sought, are relevant and material to an ongoing criminal investigation.”

Grand Jury Subpoenas: Given that Section 215 explicitly says that the FISA Court (FISC) “may only require the production of a tangible thing if such thing can be obtained” with a grand jury subpoena, it’s apparent that a grand jury subpoena is a reasonable substitute, at least where a grand jury can be convened.

National Security Letters (NSLs): Similar to subpoenas, NSLs allow intelligence agencies to collect records from a range of entities including telecommunications providers, financial institutions, credit reporting bureaus, travel agencies and others. Nearly all NSLs include self-certified gag orders, which EFF has successfully challenged as unconstitutional. Nevertheless, the FBI and other agencies can use NSLs to collect much the same information as Section 215, although the government has also misused NSLsto obtain communication records not authorized by the NSL statute.

Administrative Subpoenas: Many federal agencies have the authority to issue subpoenas for customer records in their normal course of business. These authorities are extremely widespread, comprising 335 different statutesby one count.

FISA Warrants: Under FISA, the government can get warrants from the FISC for electronic surveillance and physical searches in the context of national security investigations. Although these require a higher showing—probable cause—statistics compiled by EPIC show the FISC routinely issues them, and has done so since FISA was passed in 1978.

Some of these laws involve different legal standards than Section 215, and not all of them apply in all contexts, although exactly how the government thinks it can use many of them remains unclear.

Moreover, mapping these to the government’s actual use of 215 is imprecise because the government also continues to say that the types of information it obtains with Section 215 are classified. FBI Director James Comey claims the loss of Section 215 would be a “problem”because at least some of this information can’t be obtained with a subpoena or an NSL but hasn’t given any examples.

And taken together the government’s tools are formidable, making it difficult to see legitimate, targeted national security information that the government cannot get even without the current version of Section 215, a conclusion confirmed by the Inspector General report that as of 2009 it could not “identify any major case developments from the records obtained in response to Section 215 orders.”

Finally, looking beyond Section 215, two other powers would also expire with the Patriot Act sunset. First is the so-called lone wolf provision that the government has never used. Not once.
The second is the “roving wiretaps” provision that had been used only 11 times as of 2013 and for which the government has issued no stories of its actual usefulness in a terrorism investigation. Meanwhile, EFF unearthed evidence that this provision had been misused back in 2011. So it seems there’s little there too.

In short, don’t believe the hype that the government will have its hands tied behind its back without Section 215.

This post originally appeared on Deeplinks, a blog run by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). It’s been republished under a Creative Commons license.



Chicken teriyaki skewers

via Progressive Friends – nom-food: Chicken teriyaki skewers.


Chicken teriyaki skewers

(via iseegreatness)


Follow The Fleet (1936) – Let’s Face The Music And Dance” – YouTube

via Follow The Fleet (1936) – Let’s Face The Music And Dance” – YouTube.


Gregory May

Uploaded on 13 Jul 2010

Ginger Rogers & Fred Astaire


  • Music

  • Category

  • Licence

    • Standard YouTube Licence



Lost in Museum…The Ceramics Museum of Valencia, Spain, photo by Feetup Hostels Spain

via A Jug Of Wine, A Loaf Of Bread, And Virtual Thou • tenebrum: Lost in Museum…The Ceramics Museum….


(via surmars)

Source: tenebrum


What if David Cameron is an evil genius? Frankie Boyle

via. theguardian

Monday 1 June 2015 Last modified on Tuesday 2 June 2015

The prime minister has successfully pursued an agenda more radical than Thatcher’s – and has managed it without anybody being terribly worried by him

The Moriarty of Downing Street? Illustration: Mary Evans Picture Library/Alamy

The Moriarty of Downing Street? Illustration: Mary Evans Picture Library/Alamy

Here, in what may well be the final years of our civilisation, I would like to ask a question that has been worrying me for some time. What if David Cameron is a genius? A shrewd and malevolent psychopath who thinks two moves deeper into the game than any of his opponents? What if there sits in Downing Street today a modern-day Moriarty, living in a world where his schemes are only kept in check by the deductive brilliance of Harriet Harman? As Holmes would say, look at the evidence. Cameron has managed to set England against Scotland, Scotland against Labour. He has given his enemies the referendums they asked for, and won. He has left Nick Clegg looking like one of those terrified mouse faces that you find in an owl pellet. He has successfully pursued an agenda more radical than Thatcher’s with less popular support than John Major.

Most impressively, Cameron has managed all this without anybody being terribly worried by him. Immediately after his re-election he announced: “For too long we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens so long as you obey the law we will leave you alone.” A statement so far to the right that it conceded the political centre ground to Judge Dredd.

We have an idea of Cameron as an empty suit – he’s remarkably forgettable for someone who has a face like a gammon travel iron. What if this is simply a character he chooses to play? We can see the mileage Boris Johnson has got out of playing the fairly simple character of a sort of pissed-up dandelion. What if Cameron’s persona is actually more crafted and insidious? He has a brisk, stiff air of wishing he was somewhere else. We imagine he would much rather be a few years in the future, heading up some foundation that’s advising Qatar on how to bid for the Winter Olympics. Perhaps that’s quite an effective manner to adopt when robbing a country. Announcing in a clipped voice that you’ll be out of our hair just as soon as you’ve privatised the NHS, terribly sorry for any inconvenience. Cameron having a down-to-business persona is not terribly unlike one of those gangs who do heists in high-vis jackets.

Speaking of which, I’ve always thought that Batman hired Robin simply to draw fire: throwing a teenage boy a bright yellow cape and telling him to run through a darkened warehouse full of goons. There seems to be little difference in getting Michael Gove to dress up in a bib and plus fours and throwing him into a roomful of barristers. Gove’s appointment as justice secretary seems to be somewhere between a sardonic trolling of the judiciary and simple misdirection. If he ever does have to produce a Bill of Rights it will be a Producers-style clusterfuck that draws attention away from all the real business of the government.

Why else would he have put Gove there? Are we to imagine that his priority in choosing someone to draft tricky legislation was that they have a face that’s easy to carve into a pumpkin? Gove is a distraction for a robbery, who has been hired to be a kind of human bin fire. When the real business of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership ratification is under way, he’ll be wheeled out on Newsnight looking like a treefrog trying to escape from a scrotum and the whole culture will stop to take aim.

It’s time we accepted the true depth and horror of Cameron’s genius. In the run up to announcing a legislative programme entirely composed of the sort of things the Sheriff of Nottingham would yell at villagers as threats, he had everybody talking about foxes. He’s introducing the bulk interception of our emails and the only feeling it seems to have provoked from the public is mild arousal. He got quarter of a million people to sign a petition for a Human Rights Act referendum that they would definitely lose (British people think the European court of human rights is all about making sure that Ian Brady can get Netflix or marmalade or something). Indeed, Cameron had us all talking about human rights legislation while quietly pursuing a TTIP trade deal that will make human rights meaningless compared with those of corporations.

And there we may have the real clue to Cameron’s manner. He is a sort of bored viceroy engaged in the handover of power from government to corporations. He has a detailed idea of what life will be like 10 years down the line, when sovereignty is subordinated to corporate courts. He probably feels that, in context, we are churlish to get upset at this colourful, Lannisterish little government he has got together for the handover. Imagine the wry contempt the master criminal must have felt for Holmes, living at the centre of the brutal British empire and imagining that Moriarty’s little crimes were the worst thing in the world.