Thomas R. Eddlem
The announcement July 30 that the economy grew at a four-percent annual rate for the second quarter of 2014 has financial analysts wondering if the Federal Reserve Bank will end earlier than expected the “quantitative easing” and interest rate suppression it has engaged in since 2008.
The Intercept has published a 166-page manual of how the federal government puts people on the “no-fly list” and monitors American citizens. Obtained from whistleblower Edward Snowden, the information on the Glenn Greenwald-founded website revealed that the Obama administration has lowered the legal threshold for warrantless government surveillance of American citizens.
NSA whistleblower William Binney has made the startling claim that the NSA is recording the audio of at least 80 percent of Americans' telephone calls. The NSA acknowledged in 2013, after repeated and explicit denials, that it was recording telephone metadata, but it still denies it is keeping the audio of any American's phone calls.
The NSA warrantless surveillance program nominally geared at spying on foreigners has also spied on innocent Americans without a warrant, including a Republican Party operative, a civil rights activist and several university professors. The revelations by investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald raise the possibility that NSA warrantless surveillance has been used for political — rather than security — purposes.
The rising opposition in Congress to renewal of the charter for the Export-Import Bank from Tea Party congressmen has spawned an all-out effort by crony capitalist lobbyists in organizations such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
The Washington Post reported July 5 that 400,000 or more innocent Americans have their e-mail and text messages read by the NSA every year without the constitutionally-required warrant and probable cause. Those Americans were caught up in a nexus of surveillance where the NSA collects data on people who have some innocent connection with a foreign target of surveillance.
The Bush and Obama administrations have conspired to send at least 120 U.S. troops to Somalia without the consent of Congress, according to a Reuters wire service report.
The U.S. Supreme Court dealt a blow to unions and yet another blow to the Tenth Amendment in the 5-4 decision of Harris v. Quinn.
The U.S. Supreme Court dished out a unanimous condemnation of President Obama's dictatorial usurpation of the power of appointment in the June 26 decision of NLRB v. Noel Canning. The court ruled that President Obama exceeded his authority as president when he claimed to exercise his “recess” appointment authority without the consent of the U.S. Senate while the Senate was still in session.
Investigative reporter Glenn Greenwald has promised to name victims of NSA warrantless surveillance, calling such an expose “imminent” in an interview with Fox News. Such an exposé may prove to be a game-changer in congressional and public debate on granting the NSA unconstitutional warrantless surveillance.