Thursday, July 03, 2008

thursday reads

(AP) The Justice Department is considering letting the FBI investigate Americans without any evidence of wrongdoing, relying instead on a terrorist profile that could single out Muslims, Arabs or other racial and ethnic groups.

New NSA Spying Decision Undermines Arguments for Telecom Immunity (EFF)

Today, Chief Judge Vaughn Walker of the Northern District of California, issued an opinion in Al Haramain v. Bush, one of the cases challenging the NSA warrantless wiretapping program. The Court found that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) preempted the state secret privilege. This important decision is particularly timely, as it undermines key arguments for telecom immunity on the eve of the Senate vote on a FISA bill, set for next week.

Court Ruling Will Expose Viewing Habits of YouTube Users

There is a 10 year backlog on whistle-blower cases. (WaPo)
More than 900 cases alleging that government contractors and drugmakers have defrauded taxpayers out of billions of dollars are languishing in a backlog that has built up over the past decade because the Justice Department cannot keep pace with the surge in charges brought by whistle-blowers, according to lawyers involved in the disputes.

The issue is drawing renewed interest among lawmakers and nonprofit groups because many of the cases involve the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, rising health-care payouts, and privatization of government functions -- all of which offer rich new opportunities to swindle taxpayers.

An Indiana teacher who used a much lauded bestseller, The Freedom Writers Diary, to try to inspire under-performing high-school students has been suspended from her job without pay for 18 months.

A federal judge threw out a new Indiana law requiring bookstores and other retailers to register with the state and pay a $250 fee if they want to sell sexually explicit material. (via Bookslut)

Wired on Wikileaks

The value of the dollar hass dropped by 41% against the euro during the bu$h's term in office.

A Warning For Young Workers: The Up-Escalator May Be Broken

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