The Fantastic Feinstein: How To Make Privacy Disappear While Appearing To Defend It

225px-dianne_feinstein_official_senate_photoimages>Civil libertarians have long viewed Senator Dianne Feinstein (D.,CA) as a menace to privacy and civil liberties in her role on the  Senate Intelligence Committee. She has worked to blocked investigation of torture while supporting warrantless surveillance of our own citizens. Recently, many Californians became aware of her role in seeking ever-expanding powers for the security state. Feinstein desperately tried to get citizens to embrace a new model of privacy that allows for their continual surveillance in the latest scandals under her tenure. That has not worked particularly well so now Feinstein is taking a new approach: she is proclaiming her concern over the dangers of privacy posed by . . . drones. That’s right. Like the street magicians distracting an audience, Feinstein is trying to get citizens to focus on the use of drones for surveillance and promising some form of “regulation” in the future. The obvious intent behind yesterday’s carefully constructed scene was to present Feinstein in the light of a fighter for, rather than an attacker of, privacy rights.

FBI Director Robert Mueller acknowledged the law enforcement agency uses drone aircraft in the United States for surveillance in some cases.

Feinstein jumped at the opportunity to declare “I think the greatest threat to the privacy of Americans is the drone and the use of the drone, and the very few regulations that are on it today and the booming industry of commercial drones.” The point is obvious. The collection of every call made by every American is not really a big deal in turns of privacy. It is also not a concern to grab hundreds of millions of emails and attachments. No, it is the limited number of drone cases that is “the greatest threat to the privacy of Americans.” Of course, using drones to vaporize Americans without a charge or judicial review does not appear to bother Feinstein greatly.

Feinstein appears to be taken advice from street magicians:

Physical misdirection is a well-known tool for the magician: he points at an object, a big gesture distracts, spectators fixate on a suddenly appearing dove. All are designed to distract from another movement that is vital for the trick.

Psychological misdirection is much more subtle – a good example is the false solution. This is where the magician leads spectators to believe they’ve worked out how the trick is done. Once this ‘solution’ is suggested people are much less likely to notice the clues that crop up as to how it’s really done. Instead people look for confirmation that their own theory is correct. When the magician finally shows this ‘solution’ is no such thing, spectators are left even more bemused. The false solution is, therefore, not just a happy coincidence, it is used as a distraction from the real solution.

Of course, Feinstein and the White House never intend to reveal the trick. With few people buying the new privacy model, Feinstein wants to get people to look at a problem that will then be “solved” by her. . . And presto, your privacy is gone.

I hear that her next trick will be to saw the Separation of Powers in half by further supporting the unchecked powers of the President.

Of course, Obama, Feinstein, and others in Congress live by the same oath when it comes to telling the public anything:

“As a magician I promise never to reveal the secret of any illusion to a non-magician, unless that one swears to uphold the Magician’s Oath in turn. I promise never to perform any illusion for any non-magician without first practicing the effect until I can perform it well enough to maintain the illusion of magic.”

This is why an oath to testify truthfully is not binding on people like Clapper and not enforced by people like Feinstein. They are honoring an older oath to each other.

69 thoughts on “The Fantastic Feinstein: How To Make Privacy Disappear While Appearing To Defend It”

  1. RTC is correct that the underlying problem that must be solved is the issue of money in politics.

  2. “We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties.”
    James Madison

    RTC, I agree. However we are now past that point. It is time to throw out our government and start with new people and the same Constitution. With some added protections against lobbyists and term limits

  3. This is what we get when our elections are driven by by money. Find a way to limit the money spent and the distractions get smaller. Limit the money given and the issues will magically start to come into focus.

  4. “It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace – but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death! “- Patrick Henry

    “A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty. The means of defence against foreign danger, have been always the instruments of tyranny at home. Among the Romans it was a standing maxim to excite a war, whenever a revolt was apprehended. ” James Madison, June 29th. 1787

    “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government………………”

    “But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government”

    – Declaration of Independence- Thomas Jefferson

    It is indeed, OUR DUTY !
    It is also time.

  5. Not to belittle Madame Feinstein, but where are the other 500 “representatives” we’re paying for? If they keep quiet, it means (as the Talmud rules) that ‘they’ agree with her ‘foile shticks’!

  6. The time has come for a Revolution.
    No longer should the American people continue to whine groan and roll over until the next scandal only to leave the prior forgotten.
    We can no longer afford to turn a blind eye to the direction of our country. We must act now before it is too late. Before we transform into a fascist Corporate Owned Police State.

    Many of us will ask ourselves if the risk is worth it. Is it worth possibly sacrificing our material possessions, our careers and our economy. Is it worth the country possibly sinking into a Great Depression. After all we have our big screen tvs, our ipads, our iphones …we are overweight from eating well and when unaware of the depth of the spying and compiling of personal info, perhaps even relatively unaffected. So how do I respond to such retorts?

    Because that is not who we are.
    We are Americans. We are materialistic but we do not place material goods over freedom.
    We may argue right vs left, north vs south, east vs west. But we stand together against Tyranny. It is in our blood.

    Our Founding Fathers ingrained into the American people a rebellious streak. We had the good fortune of having some men establish a Constitution and Bill of Rights to PROTECT us from tyranny. To restrain our very goverment. The Founding Fathers may not have been without their own personal flaws. But their Constitution and Bill of Rights was their masterpiece. This is or should be something that every American can agree on.

    We are the free people. We are the protestors of the planet. The society with the biggest mouth. We are the people who put government below us, and on a leash.

    But all of that is in grave peril. For the past few decades, we have watched as our rights have been slowly boiled alive.

    We have had nefarious interests slip into positions of our government and take control.
    We have allowed corporations and their lobbyists to corrupt our Congress, our Executive and judicial.
    We have allowed our materialistic manner to be used against us in a slow boil of contentment.
    We have allowed the government to foster and grow fear, in order to restrain us instead of the reverse
    We have watched as corporations are acquiring more rights than the people.
    We have let them slowly manipulate us into a vulnerable state in which they can impose their will and restrict the protest.

    But they underestimate us, the American people. We may be fat, lazy and content. But deep down buried within us is an indomitable spirit that is our birthright. Imparted to us by the creators of this country. There is one thing that the American people are in the end, and that is stubborn. We are also highly unpredictable when pushed. We have a large amount of natural outrage and anger within us as well. We will need all of this to fight the corruption that has consumed our nations government.

    Some may call it a cabal or a conspiracy. I am not so sure that it matters anyways. For even if there is no conspiracy there is clearly outlandish and vast corruption permeating throughout the government and Democrat and Republican parties. There is a clear fascist agenda that is being implemented by both parties. This is undeniable.

    Like most corruption within the USA, it can almost be directly tied to Corporations. In our case it would be banks, Wall Street and the Military Industrial Complex. They are running free and unrestrained. While they have use to the country, they are now consuming the country. Dominating our lives and our policy. They now have larger control over our government than the voters do. They are a cancer upon our soul. We MUST defeat them. Break them. Imprison them. For if we do not, if we allow them to become our Masters. Then we risk creating a tyrant like the world has never seen.

    We must not allow these powers and abilities to continue to exist. If you do not stand against it, you are dooming yourselves or your children or grandchildren and all other future generations.

    Adolph Hitler was not easily overcome. In fact he was dangerously close to winning. If not for a couple mistakes on his part, he could have very well taken over the entire world. Try to imagine what the world would have been like if Adolph Hitler had defeated the Allies and taken over the world. Now imagine him with the technology and powers that the US government has created for itself.

    We must not allow this to continue. We must not roll over and go back to sleep.

    So I would say yes. It IS worth risking everything to defeat. Because if we do not then we risk losing it anyways. After all, in the end, you cannot take it with you anyways and what good are toys if you are a slave in the process?

    Freedom has a price. That price is risk. Some danger. Those who would choose to not pay that price would be better served moving to a country without the Bill of Rights. For it is NOT their right to decide to remove MY or YOUR rights in their own personal interest.

    So I ask my fellow Americans this. Set aside personal misgivings and slights. Do not follow partisan politics. Stand together Brothers in Arms. Right with Left. North with South. Stand tall and firm and without fear. Stand together and face the US Government and tell them, it is over. No more. They will relinquish all they have taken and step aside in shame.

    We have not been able to trust our government for a long time. Perhaps ever if Madison and Jefferson are to be taken at their word. But we have reached the point where not only can we not trust them but we now should fear them and be repulsed by them. This is unacceptable.

    So without violence, let us carry on with an economic strike. Let us launch mass protests. Distrupt the machine and clog its works.

    We must take back control. We must break Big Brother and its tools. There are other ways to defend the nation than to impose tyranny upon the people. Now is the time to do so.

    “If this be treason, make the most of it!”- Patrick Henry

  7. SECRET courts
    SECRET rules
    SECRET laws
    SECRET memos
    SECRET directives
    SECRET policies
    SECRET orders
    SECRET meetings
    SECRET interpretations
    SECRET spying

    OPEN society?

    When is Impeachment season?

  8. Buffaloed girl is a great song. And it applies to Feinstein.

    In other news, the Supreme Court is off tomorrow and come back Monday. They have some important cases which they have heard and might announce opinions or might carry over to next Term. The case on the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 has not been announced. I wish to remind you all that had Lyndon Johnson not pushed through the Voting Rights Act in 1965 in his second year as President, that we would still be in the good ol days of segregation now, segregation tomorrow and segregation forever (George Wallace). The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was President Johnson’s first big triumph. Those two statutes were authorized by the 14th Amendment and the 15th Amendments respectively. That was in the period of Radical Reconstruction following the civil war. It took 90 some odd years for Congress to get the votes to pass the enabling legislation. Lyndon was fed up with voting rights discrimination. He was well familiar with the voting qualification tests. I previously mention the one voting registration test called: How Many Bubbles Are In A Bar of Soap.
    North Carolina has been taken over by a RepubliCon Governor and both the House and Senate are RepubliCon controlled. They are in the process of creating lots of obstacles to voting rights. Lee Atwater would be thrilled were he alive. Please Google: Lee Atwater and the Southern Strategy. Lee was Ronald Rayguns campaign manager. He coached Nixon before that. The Atwater Southern Strategy was to appeal to the Southern Bigots and get them to vote RepubliCon. It worked. Next week if Scalia has his sway, the Voting Rights Act will be eviscerated and Shelby County and other Southern places can go back to the past. Scalia will say that the Original Framers of the Original Constitution had no intent for such a statute. He is right. Most of them from the South owned slaves if I recall. No, it was the Radical Reconstruction Congress after the Civil War that passed the 13th Amendment (making African Americans freedmen and women), the 14th Amendment extending civil rights to all citizens including the poor white trash and the 15th Amendment extending voting rights to the freedmen. Scalia does not care what their Original intent was. Those 600,000 men and women died in the Civil War in vain. Of course Scalia’s grandpa was not around, he was back in Sicily listening to the original intent of the mob.
    Maybe Monday will show us if the Supreme Court is backward or forward.
    Or just went in dumb and come out dumb too.

  9. HumpinDog and Swarthmore mom,

    As the humanitarian interventionist solicitously asked of the two drunken Irishmen brawling in the gutter: “Is this a private fight, or can anyone join in?

    I’ll vote for Senator Elizabeth Warren or Congresswoman Barbara Lee for U.S. President, but not for chickenshit chicken hawk You-Know-Her. Anyone without the courage to wage peace has no business anywhere near the levers of war. In other words:

    Buffaloed Girl
    (Somewhat after the traditional song of a similar name)

    Buffaloed girl, won’t you come out tonight?
    Bask in your fright; hide in plain sight.
    Buffaloed girl don’t you put up a fight;
    Just dance to the right with the goons!

    Buffaloed girl, don’t you burn any flags;
    Marry some fags; count body bags.
    Buffaloed girl, wrapped in riches not rags,
    Just keep raking in those doubloons!

    Buffaloed girl, send our troops to Iraq!
    Then leave them there! Don’t bring them back!
    Buffaloed girl, cover George Bush’s back,
    And scrape up a few more platoons!

    Buffaloed girl, just stay out of the fray.
    Keep your mouth shut! Keep making hay!
    Buffaloed girl, while the cat is away
    Just keep playing mice with buffoons.

    Buffaloed girl, don’t you hear the troops cry?
    Wounded for wrongs; dead for a lie
    Buffaloed girl, look in everyone’s eye
    And then soil your own pantaloons

    Buffaloed girl, under Lieberman’s wing
    Saving his job, that’s the main thing
    Buffaloed girl, you and Holy Joe sing
    The duet of right-wing spittoons

    Buffaloed girl, rail at video games
    Focus group that; spout the right frames
    Buffaloed girl, don’t you name any names
    Just save children from their cartoons

    Buffaloed girl, take a “listening” tour
    If you don’t know; if you’re not sure
    Buffaloed girl, voters like their fake “pure”
    Like war debt that simply balloons

    Buffaloed girl, when it counted you hid
    Don’t try to lie. That’s what you did
    Buffaloed girl, Dubya made you his kid
    When you bought the crap that he croons

    Buffaloed girl, your irrelevance mounts
    Even in small, measured amounts
    If “it” takes a village, by all your accounts
    Then take “it” to Mars and its moons

    Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2006

    Not to belittle your poetic efforts, HumpinDog, but keep at it. But the lurid “bimbo eruptions” belong to Bubba Bill and not his wife. Everything else, you can probably chalk up to “two for the price of one.”

  10. I was impressed about a hearing she held or was part of today…. She actually wants the truth….. I liked that….

  11. Darren,

    How much is enough for pelosi and swindler opportunist spouse…..

  12. Humpin,

    You’ll be bumpin the knight away……


    Gotta leave Elizabeth Warren a lone…. So far she’s staying true to the cause…..


    From what I read…. He has his fingers on more than just high speed rail….


    So long as they are male it’s ok to bash….. So long as they are not some other minority…. Or do you need to go to diversity and sensitivity training…..

Comments are closed.