Al Sharpton Courts Election 2020 Federal judge Intelwars Media MSNBC President Trump Supreme court nomination

Al Sharpton accuses President Trump of attempting a ‘coup’ with SCOTUS appointment, says nominee must ‘recuse themselves’ if election goes to court

MSNBC host the Rev. Al Sharpton on Thursday said that by filling the Supreme Court vacancy left by the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, President Donald Trump is attempting to “guarantee … his re-election” in a “coup.”

Sharpton demanded that Senate Republicans insist that whomever Trump nominates to the Supreme Court, if they are confirmed, recuse themselves in the event a contested election goes to court, the Daily Caller reported.

“If we are to have any iota of a democratic process in this election, then Republicans in the Senate, if they move forward as they seem determined to do with the process of the confirmation hearings of whoever the president nominates Saturday and a vote, they are to insist they recuse themselves,” Sharpton said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

Sharpton said confirmation of Trump’s nominee to the court would “checkmate American democracy.”

“In effect this president has therefore not only violated the whole procedure they had set up in 2016 against Justice [Merrick] Garland, nominated by President Obama, he has in fact put in place how he can checkmate American democracy by putting in a judge that will guarantee, if proceedings go through the courts up to the Supreme Court, his reelection,” he continued.

“And for [Trump] to be able to checkmate American democracy is, in fact, a coup rather than an election,” Sharpton added.

Sharpton said the public must challenge Republicans to ensure Trump’s nominee be recused, “otherwise you’ve handed over this democracy to a whole situation that is nothing short of … going into an autocracy headed by a man who is not even able to get through a sentence without really revealing his innermost thoughts of ultimate power.”

President Trump and other Republicans have argued it is necessary to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court before the election precisely because the results could be contested.

“I think this will end up in the Supreme Court, and I think it’s very important that we have nine Justices,” Trump told reporters Wednesday. “I think having a 4-4 situation is not a good situation.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said last Friday that the legitimacy of the election depends on not having a 4-4 tie at the Supreme Court.

“I think it is tremendously important that not only does the nomination happen next week but that the confirmation before Election Day,” Cruz said on Fox News. “Democrats and Joe Biden have made clear, they intend to challenge this election, they intend to fight the legitimacy of the election. As you know, Hillary Clinton has told Joe Biden ‘under no circumstances should you concede. You should challenge this election.'”

“We cannot have Election Day come and go with a 4-4 court,” Cruz said. “A 4-4 court that is equally divided cannot decide anything. And I think we risk a constitutional crisis if we do not have a nine justice Supreme Court, particularly when there’s such a risk of a contested litigation and a contested election.”

At stake are several lawsuits filed by the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee related to election laws in various states. A tied ruling at the Supreme Court would mean lower court rulings against the Trump campaign remain in place. In Pennsylvania, a federal judge ordered a stay in the Trump campaign’s lawsuit seeking to ban mailed ballot drop boxes and bar counties from accepting absentee ballots that don’t arrive without a second, internal secrecy envelope sent to all voters. A federal judge in Nevada dismissed a lawsuit from the Trump campaign challenging the state’s new mail-in voting law. In Wisconsin, a federal judge appointed by President Obama ordered the state to extend its deadlines for accepting mail-in ballots well beyond Election Day up to Nov. 9 as long as the ballots were postmarked on or before Nov. 3.

There is an expectation that Democratic nominee Joe Biden will challenge the results of a close election in court with the 2016 Democratic Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton urging Biden not to concede “under any circumstances.”

President Trump himself was noncommittal in responding to a reporter’s question Wednesday about the peaceful transition of power should he lose the election. Trump complained about mail-in ballots rather than directly answering the question.

“We’re going to have to see what happens. You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster,” Trump said. “Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There will be a continuation.”

Several Republicans condemned the president’s comments without directly mentioning Trump.

On Thursday, the president committed to accepting the results of the election if it came to a Supreme Court decision.

“One of the things you said when asked about if you lose the election, will you accept the result? You said well we’re going to have to see what happens, you know. I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster,” Fox News’ Brian Kilmeade asked Trump in a radio interview reported by the Washington Examiner. “Many think you are saying if you do lose you’ll never ever leave. That’s not what you’re saying. We just spoke to [Sen.] Lindsey Graham. He said, ‘We have every reason to contend anything that may be controversial,’ and I’ll paraphrase, if it gets to the Supreme Court and they decide Joe Biden won, Joe Biden won. Do you agree with that?”

“Oh that I would agree with, but I think we have a long way before we get there,” the president said.

Coronavirus Coronavirus lockdown Court opinion Courts COVID-19 Federal judge Intelwars Pennsylvania

Federal judge rules Pennsylvania COVID lockdowns unconstitutional, sides with counties fighting against Democratic governor

A federal judge on Monday ruled in favor of several Pennsylvania counties that filed a lawsuit against Gov. Tom Wolf (D) and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine over coronavirus restrictions and a state order to close all “non-life-sustaining businesses.”

U.S. District Judge William S. Stickman IV wrote in his 66-page opinion, filed Monday, that Wolf’s restrictions violated the First Amendment right to freedom of assembly and the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the 14th Amendment, Paula Reed Ward reports for Trib Live.

The attorney for the plaintiffs, Thomas W. King III, called the decision a “complete and total victory for the counties, businesses and the representatives.”

“You can’t order the entire population of Pennsylvania to stay at home,” he said.

The lawsuit was filed by Butler, Fayette, Greene, and Washington Counties, along with several business owners and state legislators, on May 7 after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to take the case. They argued that restrictions ordering some businesses to close while other essential businesses were permitted to remain open violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.

Judge Stickman said in his ruling that while the governor’s administration was “well-intentioned,” “good intentions toward a laudable end are not alone enough to uphold governmental action against a constitutional challenge. Indeed, the greatest threats to our system of constitutional liberties may arise when the ends are laudable, and the intent is good — especially in a time of emergency.”

“Even a vigilant public may let down its guard over its constitutional liberties only to find that liberties, once relinquished, are hard to recoup and that restrictions — while expedient in the face of an emergency situation — may persist long after immediate danger has passed,” Stickman wrote.

He found that a policy limiting indoor and outdoor gatherings to 25 and 250 people violates “the right of assembly enshrined in the First Amendment.” He also declared that Pennsylvania’s stay-at-home orders and business closures were unconstitutional, though they have since been lifted. His ruling would prevent such policies from being implemented again.

“There is no question that this country has faced, and will face, emergencies of every sort,” Stickman wrote. “But the solution to a national crisis can never be permitted to supersede the commitment to individual liberty that stands as the foundation of the American experiment.”

The Constitution “sets certain lines that may not be crossed, even in an emergency,” he declared.

“The fact is that the lockdowns imposed across the United States in early 2020 in response to the covid-19 pandemic are unprecedented in the history of our commonwealth and our country,” the judge said. “They have never been used in response to any other disease in our history. They were not recommendations made by the CDC.”

Stickman pointed out that the Pennsylvania government never defined what a “life-sustaining” business is and that the closure of nonessential businesses was unprecedented in the state’s history.

“Never before has the government taken a direct action which shuttered so many businesses and sidelined so many employees and rendered their ability to operate, and to work, solely dependent on government discretion,” he said.

President Donald Trump nominated Judge Stickman to the federal bench in 2019 and the Senate confirmed his appointment on July 31 last year.

Bad court rulings census Courts Executive Orders Illegal Immigration Intelwars

Horowitz: Courts finally clamp down on executive actions … that deal with illegal aliens

It’s almost as if the courts have been abolished. One governor after another has crushed our foundational liberties with impunity because of an unprecedented approach to confronting a respiratory virus. Every aspect of our lives and liberty has been stripped or thrown into chaos based on the capricious whims of executive fiat. Almost no court has intervened to protect the Bill of Rights. In comes a panel of judges for the Second Circuit Court of Appeals last Thursday and finally puts a stop to executive orders … but only as they relate to illegal aliens, not American citizens!

We now live in a country where American citizens have no right to open a business or to breathe free air without a mask, but illegal aliens have a right to be counted in the census and distort citizen representation! State governors can place interstate travel bans and restrictions on Americans in other states, but the president of the United States cannot prevent foreign nationals from breaking into the country and must even use their very presence in the country and their unilateral choice of state residency to add to the electoral totals of states like California. Welcome to the Twilight Zone.

After the president was rebuffed by the courts in his attempt to count the number of U.S. citizens in the census, his backup plan was to at least discount those foreign nationals who are in the country illegally. On July 21, he released a memorandum instructing Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to supply the requisite information needed to ensure illegal aliens aren’t counted in the census. After all, isn’t one purpose of a census to know how many people can vote in a given area?

Yet, as we are being quarantined against our will and toddlers are being forced to mask up without any recourse in the court system, illegal aliens always get immediate representation in the courts. At the behest of New York’s government, the Second Circuit issued an injunction on the order, claiming that the president engaged in “an unlawful exercise of the authority granted to the President.” Suddenly, the courts are concerned with executive fiat that affects our lives!

Two of the three judges — Richard Wesley and Peter Hall — are Republican appointees. This is yet another case of Republican-appointed judges handing civilization-changing victories to the Left, a result that never occurs the other way around from Democrat-appointed judges.

The twisted irony about New York obtaining standing in this case and ultimately prevailing is that the reason why immigration policy was given over to the federal government was precisely to ensure that states don’t admit undesirable aliens as a means of juicing up their representation in the national government. But that is exactly what states like New York and California are doing. They get to thwart federal law, thanks to numerous court rulings, and criminalize the enforcement of immigration law, thereby ensuring that illegal aliens are incentivized to come to their states. Then they turn around and demand they be counted. Talk about benefiting from the fruits of the crime!

As I’ve noted before, even if the dictate of the 14th Amendment to count “whole persons” compelled us to count immigrants, it could not encompass those who entered without consent. Our courts have stated in an interrupted stream of case law that any alien not legally admitted to the country is as if he is literally standing outside our boundary. “The petitioner, although physically within our boundaries, is to be regarded as if he had been stopped at the limit of our jurisdiction, and kept there while his right to enter was under debate,” states the Supreme Court in U.S. v. Ju Toy, 1905.

The same way one doesn’t need a reinterpretation of the Constitution to recognize that illegal aliens cannot be counted, one doesn’t need an update of statute either. As John Noonan, former Ninth Circuit judge, said in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1985, “If there was an invading army on American soil, one does not suppose the Bureau of Census would count the enemy troops.”

How sad that a clause of the 14th Amendment designed to ensure that black Americans were not disenfranchised is now being used to disenfranchise all Americans in favor of foreign invaders.

This ruling comes just days after a California judge ruled that the president cannot end the counting of the census itself this month and must continue it into October. Now judges apparently control all executive functions, and there is no pushback from the executive branch or an effort to draw the line on separation of powers.

Meanwhile, a federal judge in Minnesota ruled that a Somali immigrant who had provided aid to al-Shabab must be released early because of the virus. At the same time, a Los Angeles judge ruled that a pastor couldn’t hold services indoors, again, because of that same virus.

Oh, and remember how almost no businesses owner won in court the right to keep their businesses from arbitrarily being deemed unessential by government? The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, which was supposedly made more conservative by Trump, ruled against Oklahoma City’s anti-panhandling law. Blocking traffic and harassing motorists at highway medians is deemed a First Amendment right and is evidently essential during the virus, but a gym owner who tries to keep his business open is arrested.

See a pattern here of which “rights” are upheld and which ones are repudiated?

One thing is clear: The courts are worse than ever, despite the promise for change. They have failed to protect a single legitimate constitutional right. As such, why should society and other branches of government feel compelled to abide by their concoction of novel “rights” that would have shocked the consciences of our Founders?

academicpapers Courts Fraud Intelwars machinelearning

Adversarial Machine Learning and the CFAA

I just co-authored a paper on the legal risks of doing machine learning research, given the current state of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act:

Abstract: Adversarial Machine Learning is booming with ML researchers increasingly targeting commercial ML systems such as those used in Facebook, Tesla, Microsoft, IBM, Google to demonstrate vulnerabilities. In this paper, we ask, “What are the potential legal risks to adversarial ML researchers when they attack ML systems?” Studying or testing the security of any operational system potentially runs afoul the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), the primary United States federal statute that creates liability for hacking. We claim that Adversarial ML research is likely no different. Our analysis show that because there is a split in how CFAA is interpreted, aspects of adversarial ML attacks, such as model inversion, membership inference, model stealing, reprogramming the ML system and poisoning attacks, may be sanctioned in some jurisdictions and not penalized in others. We conclude with an analysis predicting how the US Supreme Court may resolve some present inconsistencies in the CFAA’s application in Van Buren v. United States, an appeal expected to be decided in 2021. We argue that the court is likely to adopt a narrow construction of the CFAA, and that this will actually lead to better adversarial ML security outcomes in the long term.

Medium post on the paper. News article, which uses our graphic without attribution.

agenda Andy beshear ankle monitors asleep authorities cornonavirus Courts COVID-19 Donald Trump Draconian Elizabeth linscott false illusion family Federal Reserve governments Governor Headline News Hoax Hospital Intelwars Michigan Money Creation no choices pandemic Programming quarantine contracts refusal to comply scamdemic tyranny visiting wake up world takeover

Welcome to the USSA: Woman & Husband Fitted With Ankle Monitors For Refusing To Sign Quarantine Order

A woman and her husband had ankle bracelets slapped on for the “crime” of not signing a COVID-19 quarantine contract. Welcome to the USSA.

Last week, Elizabeth Linscott got tested for the COVID-19 because she was planning to visit her parents in Michigan. After testing positive, Linscott was asked to sign a self-quarantine contract. When she refused, she and her husband got ankle monitors to track their every move and force them to comply with the quarantine commands.

If you are under any false illusion that you’re free at this point, you should probably read a little more.

Kentucky Governor, Andy Beshear, has issued such strict and controversial executive COVID orders that the state’s Attorney General tried to block them. The Kentucky Supreme Court ruled that his orders could remain at least for the time being. Now one couple is being penalized by their county health department for refusing to completely go along with the protocol.

“My grandparents wanted to see me, too,” Linscott said. “So just to make sure if they tested negative, that they would be OK, everything would be fine,” she added according to Wave 3 News. “My part was if I have to go to the ER, if I have to go to the hospital, I’m not going to wait to get the approval to go.”

After testing positive and without showing any symptoms, Linscott said the health department contacted her and requested she sign documents that will limit her traveling anywhere unless she calls the health department first. She said she chose to not sign the documents.  She has to ask the “authorities” for permission, and since she didn’t want to do give up her freedom, they took it from her.

We live in crazy times, and anyone who supports this kind of tyranny will change their mind quickly when the rollouts of more draconian measures begin.  It’s hard to believe things could get worse, but with so many not believing there’s a “second wave” or even a first wave of this hoax pandemic, something else is bound to happen.

Greg Mannarino: It’s Critical To Understand That The Goal Is “Full Control By The Federal Reserve”

The Federal Reserve is trying to take over the planet right now, and people are largely still asleep. They are coming out and telling you what they want now, and people STILL refuse to open their eyes.

It All Comes Back To The Federal Reserve: The NWO Is Being Shoved Down Our Throats

This is simply a way to push the fear, and show that they have no desire to treat people as equals. We will be their slaves and tracked and monitored.  Your consent isn’t required.

The one way to beat this beast system they are rolling out is to wake up to what’s happenin. As Greg Mannarino says, “If you realize, by understanding and having a clear picture of what the bigger picture is here, and you know what is: full control of the global markets by the Federal Reserve, who is running the entire charade right now. It’s simple. It’s the Wall Street banks and the Fed that are running the world. And they will do whatever they want. They will get whoever they want in office. That’s it.”

Everyone, including these people in the court systems and state governments, were selected to get this agenda to go through. It’s actually getting frustrating that people still somehow believe Trump will use the system set up the elites to take down the elites. Anyone with half a brain can see that that won’t be allowed to happen. There’s an agenda and if Trump won’t go along with it, they will get Biden in office.  The explanation is simple, it’s waking people up that’s been difficult.

Black Lives Matter Courts Intelwars Marcellus wiley NBA

Marcellus Wiley delivers passionate argument against NBA painting ‘Black Lives Matter’ on courts

ESPN reported this week that the NBA plans to paint “Black Lives Matter” on its courts when the season resumes, in reaction to players’ insistence “that the fight for racial equality and social justice be a central part” of the league.

But Fox Sports 1’s Marcellus Wiley says that is “not a good idea,” and gave an impassioned speech on his show explaining why.

What are the details?

During a discussion on Wiley’s “Speak for Yourself,” he argued against the NBA’s purported plan to paint “Black Lives Matter” on their courts, pointing to the organization’s political goals as to his reasoning.

“There’s a problem when you start to go down this road of freedom of expression, freedom of speech, and how much social space is allowed for those who don’t support in that same space,” Wiley argued. “And that’s where I wonder where this is going to go in terms of identity politics. We know what identity politics does—it divides, and it polarizes. No matter how you want to look at it, that’s just the effect of it no matter how great the intentions are. We all know the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

Wiley read from BLM”s mission statement, voicing concern over the movement’s declaration that they “dismantle the patriarchal practice,” and “disrupt the western-described nuclear family structure requirement.”

The former NFL player and Ivy Leaguer explained:

When I know statistics, when I know my reality—forget statistics, I knew this before I went to Columbia [University] and saw these same statistics that I’m going to read to you right now.
Children from single parent homes versus two parent homes: The children from the single parent homes (this was in 1995 I was reading this) [are] five times more likely to commit suicide. Six times more likely to be in poverty. Nine times more likely to drop out of high school. Ten times more likely to abuse chemical substances. Fourteen times more likely to commit rape, 20 times more likely to end up in prison, and 32 times more likely to run away from home.
I knew that. You know why I knew it? Because a lot of my friends didn’t have family structures that were nuclear like mine, and they found themselves outside of their dreams and goals and aspirations. So when I see that as a mission statement for Black Lives Matter, it makes me scratch my head .
When I also see their mission is to eradicate white supremacy. In 2020, ,white supremacy is the mission. Woo, that’s a lot of digging through minutiae right there. I’m on a show that I’m hosting with another black guy who is hosting with me who replaced another black guy, and that’s just one example of it. So, I understand, I respect your space, I respect what you’re protesting for. But will you respect others who don’t support that same protest?

Courts federal courts Incorporation Incorporation Doctrine Intelwars Police qualified immunity

How Federal Courts Gave Us Qualified Immunity

The death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers in Minneapolis led to discussions about institutional reforms, including ending qualified immunity for police officers.

Qualified immunity is a legal doctrine that shields cops from liability for actions taken in the line of duty unless they violate rights “clearly established” by existing judicial precedent. No statute exists granting qualified immunity. It evolved over time based on a series of Supreme Court cases.

In practice, qualified immunity makes it extremely difficult to prosecute police officers for using excessive force or committing other acts of misconduct. As Supreme Court Justice Byron White wrote in the 1986 case Malley v. Briggs, qualified immunity protects “all but the plainly incompetent or those who knowingly violate the law.” Reuters called it “a highly effective shield in thousands of lawsuits seeking to hold cops accountable for using excessive force.”

But how did we end up with qualified immunity in the first place? The legal doctrine evolved over time thanks to federal judicial activism and was applied to every police department in the United States through the incorporation doctrine. The very existence of qualified immunity reinforces an ugly truth. We can’t trust the federal government to protect our rights. It almost always defers to government power.

We can trace the origins of qualified immunity back to the Civil Rights Act of 1871. The act was codified into law by 42 U.S. Code §1983 — “Civil action for deprivation of rights.” In effect, it allows any U.S. citizen to sue a state or local official in federal court for “the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws.”

This was one of the first federal laws passed based on the 14th Amendment. The statute arguably overreaches the intent of the 14th. Regardless, for the first time, it created an avenue for individuals to hold state officials accountable through the federal courts.

Although §1983 did not specifically provide for an immunity defense, lawyers for government officials often argued for immunity based on common law, arguing it was implicit in the statute. Early on, immunity defenses were built on a case-by-case basis and not based on settled federal court precedent. But in the 1967 case Pierson v. Ray, the Supreme Court cemented the doctrine of qualified immunity into federal jurisprudence. The Court held that government officials who violate the law or constitutional limits on power in “good faith” can raise “qualified immunity” as a defense.

Chief Justice Earl Warren wrote the majority opinion.

“Under the prevailing view in this country, a peace officer who arrests someone with probable cause is not liable for false arrest simply because the innocence of the suspect is later proved. A policeman’s lot is not so unhappy that he must choose between being charged with dereliction of duty if he does not arrest when he has probable cause, and being mulcted in damages if he does. Although the matter is not entirely free from doubt, the same consideration would seem to require excusing him from liability for acting under a statute that he reasonably believed to be valid but that was later held unconstitutional, on its face or as applied.”

The next step forward for qualified immunity came in the 1971 case Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents. The case opened the door for individuals to sue federal government officials for violations of rights given that §1983 only applied to state and local officials. Justice William Brennan wrote, “While there is no explicit right to file a civil lawsuit against federal government officials who have violated the Fourth Amendment, this right can be inferred. This is because a constitutional protection would not be meaningful if there were no way to seek a remedy for a violation of it.”

In 1982, Harlow v. Fitzgerald established qualified immunity for federal government officials and set the stage for the current definition of qualified immunity. The Court held that government actors are entitled to qualified immunity due to “the need to protect officials who are required to exercise discretion and the related public interest in encouraging the vigorous exercise of official authority.”

“Government officials performing discretionary functions generally are shielded from liability for civil damages insofar as their conduct does not violate clearly established statutory or constitutional rights of which a reasonable person would have known.” [Empashis added]

Today, courts analyze qualified immunity cases under a three-part test established in Graham v. Connor (1989). Ilan Wurman explained the test in a paper titled Qualified Immunity and Statutory Interpretation published by the Seattle Law Review.

“The test requires courts to undertake an objective analysis of the circumstances surrounding the use of force. Even if a court decides that the use of force was unreasonable and thus unconstitutional, the second step of the inquiry is the qualified immunity analysis: Was it ‘clearly established‘ that this kind of force in this kind of circumstance is unconstitutional? If not, the officer escapes liability.” [Emphasis added]

Grahm also established that all police excessive force cases involving arrests, searches, or investigatory stops must be evaluated under the Fourth Amendment, not the due process clause of the 14th.

Wurman argues that the “clearly established” test erects an almost insurmountable hurdle to those trying to prove excessive force or a violation of their rights.

“The qualified immunity test poses an almost insurmountable analytical problem—the permutations are infinite. A given situation is rarely exactly like another. There will always be sufficient distinguishing facts to decide that there was no clearly established law.”

Bivens and subsequent cases all involved federal government officials, but eventually, the court effectively abandoned the statutory process in §1983 and began hearing cases against state agents directly under the Constitution. As Wurman explained, “Immunity doctrine traditionally looked to the common law to derive immunities in §1983 cases. This approach was lost, quite possibly as a result of historical accident, as the Court began to hear Bivens actions directly under the Constitution and not under any statute.”

Later, he writes, “[The Court] subsequently invented immunity doctrine out of whole cloth in other federal-officer cases and exported that doctrine to the §1983 cases rather than importing the relevant doctrine from the state-officer cases.”

The rationale for federalizing state and local police misconduct cases was good-intentioned. When Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1871, it was next to impossible for African-Americans to get a fair shake in many state courts and government officials could abuse their rights with virtual impunity.

But the end-result of centralizing power in the federal government was worse. Now it’s next to impossible for any person in any state to get a fair shake when challenging police misconduct. The federal courts have cemented a system in place that gives law enforcement officers almost complete immunity and allows them to violate any individual’s rights with virtual impunity.

Through the incorporation doctrine that applies the federal Bill of Rights to state and local governments, this system protects police officers in every city, county and state in the U.S. from Honolulu, Hawaii to West Quoddy Head, Maine.

A decentralized system where cases were heard under state law and state constitutions would undoubtedly have problems. Some states would probably extend almost complete protection to law enforcement officers just like the federalized system. But surely some would be better.

The lesson here is pretty clear. Government protects its own. Centralized power almost never benefits the average person in the long-run. And we cannot count on federal courts to protect our rights.

ACLU Courts Crime Eavesdropping Encryption Facebook Intelwars privacy Surveillance

How Did Facebook Beat a Federal Wiretap Demand?

This is interesting:

Facebook Inc. in 2018 beat back federal prosecutors seeking to wiretap its encrypted Messenger app. Now the American Civil Liberties Union is seeking to find out how.

The entire proceeding was confidential, with only the result leaking to the press. Lawyers for the ACLU and the Washington Post on Tuesday asked a San Francisco-based federal court of appeals to unseal the judge’s decision, arguing the public has a right to know how the law is being applied, particularly in the area of privacy.


The Facebook case stems from a federal investigation of members of the violent MS-13 criminal gang. Prosecutors tried to hold Facebook in contempt after the company refused to help investigators wiretap its Messenger app, but the judge ruled against them. If the decision is unsealed, other tech companies will likely try to use its reasoning to ward off similar government requests in the future.

Here’s the 2018 story. Slashdot thread.

Courts Cybersecurity Intelwars Laws

Cybersecurity Law Casebook

Robert Chesney teaches cybersecurity at the University of Texas School of Law. He recently published a fantastic casebook, which is a good source for anyone studying this.

Courts Intelwars internetofthings Laws publicinterest

Securing the Internet of Things through Class-Action Lawsuits

This law journal article discusses the role of class-action litigation to secure the Internet of Things.

Basically, the article postulates that (1) market realities will produce insecure IoT devices, and (2) political failures will leave that industry unregulated. Result: insecure IoT. It proposes proactive class action litigation against manufacturers of unsafe and unsecured IoT devices before those devices cause unnecessary injury or death. It’s a lot to read, but it’s an interesting take on how to secure this otherwise disastrously insecure world.

And it was inspired by my book, Click Here to Kill Everybody.