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daily 07/06/2014

    • Last July, as part of that investigation, Alvarado and her co-chairman, state Rep. Dan Flynn, R-Van, sent a letter to Gene Powell, then-chairman of the UT System Board of Regents, instructing the board not to take any “adverse employment action” against a list of people related to their inquiry, including Powers.

       

      “I don’t know what part of the letter people didn’t comprehend,” Alvarado said. “I don’t appreciate the selective memory some people seem to have.”

    • Proportionality is a general principle in law which covers several special (although related) concepts. The concept of proportionality is used as a criterion of fairness and justice in statutory interpretation processes, especially in constitutional law, as a logical method intended to assist in discerning the correct balance between the restriction imposed by a corrective measure and the severity of the nature of the prohibited act. Within criminal law, it is used to convey the idea that the punishment of an offender should fit the crime. Under international humanitarian law governing the legal use of force in an armed conflict, proportionality and distinction are important factors in assessing military necessity.
    • The Post reviewed roughly 160,000 intercepted e-mail and instant-message conversations, some of them hundreds of pages long, and 7,900 documents taken from more than 11,000 online accounts.
    • The NSA treats all content intercepted incidentally from third parties as permissible to retain, store, search and distribute to its government customers. Raj De, the agency’s general counsel, has testified that the NSA does not generally attempt to remove irrelevant personal content, because it is difficult for one analyst to know what might become relevant to another
    • In an interview, Snowden said “primary documents” offered the only path to a concrete debate about the costs and benefits of Section 702 surveillance. He did not favor public release of the full archive, he said, but he did not think a reporter could understand the programs “without being able to review some of that surveillance, both the justified and unjustified.
    • “While people may disagree about where to draw the line on publication, I know that you and The Post have enough sense of civic duty to consult with the government to ensure that the reporting on and handling of this material causes no harm,” he said.
    • In Snowden’s view, the PRISM and Upstream programs have “crossed the line of proportionality.”
    • “Even if one could conceivably justify the initial, inadvertent interception of baby pictures and love letters of innocent bystanders,” he added, “their continued storage in government databases is both troubling and dangerous. Who knows how that information will be used in the future?”
    • “They didn’t touch the FISA data,” Alexander replied. He added, “That database, he didn’t have access to.”
    • The NSA’s general counsel “has testified that the NSA does not generally attempt to remove irrelevant personal content, because it is difficult for one analyst to know what might become relevant to another,” the Post reports.
    • “One analyst rests her claim that a target is foreign on the fact that his e-mails are written in a foreign language, a quality shared by tens of millions of Americans,” the Post notes. “Others are allowed to presume that anyone on the chat ‘buddy list’ of a known foreign national is also foreign.”

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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