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JUSTICE Act talking points
|Talking points in progress for the JUSTICE Act Organizing ... Gina Cooper suggests "starting with the broadest list possible and then narrowing it down to about 10. That way we have general consensus but there is room for each individual to focus on the 2-4 points they are most passionate about while consistently reinforcing the larger narrative."|
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DRAFT!!!!! WORK IN PROGRESS!!!!!!
- The situation for PATRIOT Act and FISA reform is much more favorable now than it was in July 2008: some new Senators, a less-hostile administration, revelations and details of the extent of the abuses. The JUSTICE Act is an important first step, a comprehensive approach to reform that introduces significant new privacy safeguards and holds telecoms accountable for past abuses.
- The Obama Administration's statement that it would consider amendments as part of the PATRIOT Act re-authorization process is a welcome development [Original source: CDT].
- Get FISA Right's contribution to the broad and diverse coalition supporting our civil rights is to spearhead a social network activism campaign on Twitter, Facebook, and our original home on myBO (now renamed Organizing for America). We're working together with progressives, libertarians, moms, millennials, privacy advocates, and hopefully many others.
About the JUSTICE Act
- The JUSTICE Act will add strong new checks and balances to the PATRIOT Act, especially those provisions dealing with the government’s authority to issue National Security Letters. If passed, the bill would also establish critically important protections for Americans against surveillance authorized under the FAA and completely repeal the FAA provision intended to legally immunize telecoms like AT&T that illegally assisted in the National Security Agency's warrantless wiretapping program. [Original source: EFF.]
- The JUSTICE Act fixes National Security Letters by changing the standard for getting them and, most importantly, by putting the most sensitive records out of the reach of NSLs. They are issued tens of thousands of times per year, in secret, to get financial, credit, and communications records, and much more. That's where the abuses are, according to the DOJ's own Inspector General. [Original souce: CDT]
- The JUSTICE Act would renew two of the three expiring PATRIOT provisions PATRIOT sections 206 (John Doe roving wiretaps) and 215 (FISA orders for any tangible thing), but would also add strong new checks and balances to those provisions. [Original source: EFF]
Additional details, depending on audience
- These are nonpartisan/transpartisan issues relevant to everyone in the United States, representing as they do the core principles on which our nation was founded and those which have been shown to produce the most open, successful, prosperous, free, and secure societies.
- Specifically, the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights were all drafted very much in reaction to the abuses by King George III, including the notorious "general warrants" (issued without duration, without specificity, and without probable cause) that customs officers and other agents of the British Crown used to invade the privacy of the colonists, enter their homes, leaf through their personal correspondence, look into their jewelry boxes and other repositories for intimate possessions -- all of which is now echoed in the technological and physical surveillance measures contemplated by the Patriot Act and related measures.
- The Justice Act (reforming the Patriot Act) is only a piece of a much broader series of reforms necessary to correct the overreaching of the last eight years during which a flawed, "war on terror" paradigm resulted in reversals of the presumption of innocence and the erroneous assumption that (rare) terrorist incidents can best be combated by ubiquitous surveillance and intrusions upon liberty domestically and of Americans abroad.
- In general the reforms needed relate to (i) enhanced transparency about secret spying and other programs carried on by the US government against US persons, (ii) enhanced and meaningful oversight by Congress and a revitalized and newly empowered Privacy and Civil Liberties Board equipped with subpoena and other authorities necessary to provide adequate oversight, (iii) rejection of racial, religious, ethnic, or other profiling proxies for criminal predicates, and (iv) the re-establishment of fact-based, individualized suspicion and the constitutionally required warrant as the default condition for searches in the United States, except for those narrow and limited exceptions identified by the US Supreme Court which should themselves be interpreted narrowly and not used to justify ubiquitous surveillance or datamining.
- Those Patriot Act and related legislative and regulatory authorities that have not been used (e.g. the lone wolf provision, which is set to expire in December 2009) or have been egregiously and notoriously abused (e.g. the National Security Letters, even though they are not expiring but which resemble expiring business records section 215 in important ways) should be the first to be reformed. The roving wiretaps provision section 206 which also expires in December should also be amended to remedy current constitutional defects, such as, at a minimum, adding requirements for specificity of the target and confirmation that the targeted facility is being used.
- But the reforms should reach well beyond those specific provisions to reach the even more problematic portions of the Patriot Act that are not expiring (such as National Security Letters), and should encompass the entire illegitimate and constitutionally dubious series of surveillance authorities including especially those contained in the FISA Amendments Act of 2008.
- The nation also requires thorough and transparent investigation and accountability for the illegal domestic spying already engaged in, both by the nation's top officials and their allies in the private sector, so that lessons may be learned, abuses stopped and remedied, mistakes not repeated, and the rule of law restored in this country.
- We respect the need of the government to do some things secretly - and that we have a long national history ... sometimes we do secret things Constitutionally, as in the original FISA Act, and sometimes we are later shamed by our unwarrented breaking of Constitutional guarantees, as in the innocent imprisonment of thousands of innocent Japanese-Americans during WWII. During the Bush era, we engaged in a series of shameful acts, and the Justice Act seeks to correct at least the most important of these. [Original source: Feingold?]
If you have links for any of these, or know other endorsing organizations, please leave them in the thread here. Thanks!
- American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee
- American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression
- American Library Association
- Association of American Publishers
- Association of Research Libraries
- Bill of Rights Defence Commiteee
- Brennan Center
- Center for Democracy & Technology
- Center for National Security Studies
- Defending Dissent Foundation
- The Freedom and Justice Foundation
- Government Accountability Project
- National Coalition Against Censorship
- PEN American Center
- The Woodhull Freedom Foundation
- Media Release
- S. 1686 full text http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-s1686/show
- Chip Pitts, Stanford Law School and the Bill of Rights Defense Committee
- EFF Supports JUSTICE Act to Reform the USA PATRIOT Act and Repeal Telco Immunity, Kevin Bankston
- A chance to fix the PATRIOT Act?, Julian Sanchez, Cato@Liberty
- Patriot Act Sunsets Should Prompt Re-consideration of Anti-terror Powers , Center for Democracy and Society, also ends with a useful section on What's next in Congress for the Patriot Act?
- Justice for True Patriots, ACLU
- Senate Bill Defends Reader Privacy by Regulating Surveillance, Jenni Terry and Beverly Goldberg, American Library Association
- Bill of Rights Defence Commiteee Strongly Supports the JUSTICE Act, Amy Ferrer, The People's Campaign for the Constitution
- Battle Looms Over the Patriot Act, Charlie Savage, New York Times
- JUSTICE: Surveillance has nothing to do with who is in the White House, Sarah Jaffe, Global Comment
Latest page update: made by JonPincus
, Sep 25 2009, 12:35 PM EDT
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|JonPincus||Feedback on draft talking points?||7||Sep 25 2009, 9:06 AM EDT by CarloScannella|
Thread started: Sep 23 2009, 12:01 PM EDT Watch
here's the curent version:
* The situation for PATRIOT Act and FISA reform is much more favorable now than it was in July 2008: some new Senators, a less-hostile administration, revelations and details of the extent of the abuses. The JUSTICE Act is an important first step; while limited, it's reforms are very significant.
* The Obama Administration's statement that it would consider amendments as part of the PATRIOT Act re-authorization process is a welcome development [Original source: CDT].
* Get FISA Right's contribution to the broad and diverse coalition supporting our civil rights is to spearhead a social network activism campaign, on Twitter in conjunction with progressives, libertarians, moms, millennials, and hopefully many others ...
Do you find this valuable?
|JonPincus||Suggested JUSTICE Act talking points?||5||Sep 20 2009, 12:52 PM EDT by JonPincus|
Thread started: Sep 18 2009, 11:17 AM EDT Watch
A thread for suggesting talking points for the JUSTICE Act. See the main page at http://get-fisa-right.wetpaint.com/page/JUSTICE+Act+talking+points for more.
Do you find this valuable?
|Brons||My one concern||1||Sep 20 2009, 12:33 PM EDT by JonPincus|
Thread started: Sep 19 2009, 1:19 PM EDT Watch
I agree that the JUSTICE Act is a marked improvement over the USA PATRIOT Act, but we need to make sure that we don't go too far in our support of it. It is an improvement, but it is not a complete solution to the problems of the various PATRIOT/FISA/etc incursions into civil liberties and our core principles. This act does, after all, renew/reauthorize National Security Letters, §215 orders, and John Doe roving wiretaps, and their associate gag/non-disclosure orders, which are all things that we, the EFF, the ACLU and other civil libertarians have opposed.
The JUSTICE Act protections in these areas are critically important and we should strongly back them, *as a first step* in correcting the damage done, but we need to recognize that this act is not enough and should not imply that it is sufficient. If you read the EFF's article supporting JUSTICE, you will note that they do this. They call the protections critically important, but have links such as the "206" and "215" links to pages explaining why these sections should be eliminated entirely, and they end with the explicit statement, "EFF would prefer that none of the expiring PATRIOT provisions be renewed, but if they are, they absolutely must be accompanied by meaningful new checks and balances like those introduced today. It's time that JUSTICE was restored." This is strikes me as decidedly well crafted.
3 out of 3 found this valuable. Do you?
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