back to article EFF sues Dubya over warrantless surveillance

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has sued President Bush, the National Security Agency, and nine other public officials to stop what the civil liberties group characterizes as far-reaching and illegal surveillance on ordinary US citizens. The complaint, filed Thursday in federal district court in San Francisco, comes in …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Webster Phreaky

    Yes, These Idiots would rather a Dirty Bomb go off in their back yard.

    EFF - shows Stupidity knows no bounds.

    I can only hope that when it DOES happen, and fuckin idiots like the EFF will make it easier, it happens in their neighborhood when they and their families are all at home. Then we'll see who's the first to cry that blame game.

  2. Piggy and Tazzy

    Well Webster Freaky

    If it DOES happen AND the EFF and their families are all at home, then it WONT be them to cry the blame game first, will it?

    Now who's the fuckin idiot?

  3. David Neil

    Dirty bomb...

    Surprised you haven't found a way to suggest they are Apple owners as well.

    Let's just think for a minute if a dirty bomb doesn't go off - does that indicate a) the surveillence worked or b) It'sa touch harder than you think?


    Suppose the ban on automatic weapons is extended to semi-auto handguns, does that mean only criminals will have those weapons and thus people who have historically had them are now criminals. Suppose the monitoring picks up someone indicates ownership of said handgun, does that justify a dawn raid and jail term?

    Chipping away at the Amendments to the Constitution of the US keeps on going, until eventually you will be as toothless as we are over here, and your only recourse will be letters to the editor.

    Still I guess they are just libfags who don't get the message that it is for our own good - which begs the question, if the Government can read your email, why is Palin so determined to hide hers?

  4. Iamfanboy


    you're more likely to die on the toilet than to die in a terrorist attack.

    So, should be ban toilets?

    Or, more realistically, thousands of people die in car crashes every year, and more are crippled for life. So, sensibly, we should ban cars, including the big truck you bought as a surrogate penis Webster.

  5. Mark

    What does spying on your citizens

    have to do with a dirty bomb?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    I'd rather respect the constitution then chase xenophobic shadows.

  7. Funky Dennis


    Well done, you have been taken in by the DIRTY BOMB, possibly the least worthwhile endeavour a terrorist could pursue.


  8. Herr Ferret

    What dirty bomb?

    Sure, however it will be probably used to spy on normal folks and use it to profile people for crimes.

    Ok, chose either the chance of a remote chance dirty bomb going of and killing 50 to 100 people or living in a totalitarian state where every movement is watched and monitored.

    I chose the risk, even if I was to die the horrible death cause by this weapon. Good old ben franking said it best

    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    The US is ruled by fear, driven in a large part by the republican party, as they know that fear and distrust is the best way to keep themselves in power and thier special interest lobbyists in job

  9. Anonymous Coward

    Ah, Webster... so many other troo 'merkins, you didn't hear the shot when it was fired... didn't notice when your elected, sacred and saintly guv'nment started lifting your civil rights right out from under your arse. And you're even cheering them on. Remember those words from the Declaration of Independence? If you do, apply them to the law in question here.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dirty bomb

    Dont make me laugh. A Chemical attack is much more likely. if some thing happens in the US it most likely DOMESTIC TERRORISM . Not some muslim who hates the US , but an anti -gov group.

    Folks please don't compare the rest of the USA with Webster. I mean if you have read his post on apple products you know what kind of person he is and how his logic and reasoning skills work.

    I am an American and people like Webster scare me. Not some pisses off Arab guy, but some on that pushes the illogical views on to the rest of us. A person that would have has parallelized by fear A person that says we most destroy those that do not think like us. God country and guns. To question any thing the government does is an act of treason and you should be removed from society at all cost.

    Folks he is what we should be afraid of. I will not live my lie in fear and I will be damned if I'm going to let a fear monger strip me of all my rights . Have me spying on my neighbors . His vision of America is my nightmare . I rather slit my own throat then live in his world, no I take that back. I rather die fighting against that version of America he would want.

  11. steve-C


    I shall sleep a little better, knowing people like you still exist in Jesusland.

    And sooner or later, someone will post "If you've nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear".....well, when they do, could they please post......

    1. Their full address.

    2. The school their children attend.

    3. Their REAL earnings for last year.

    4. The fastest they have ever driven on a public road.

    5. Their bank and credit card details, if poss (it's OK I'm with the government, honest I am".

    Flames because:

    "Wanted one large handbasket, approx planet sized, must be heat resistant, for one way trip"

  12. Moss Icely Spaceport
    Thumb Up

    Better to....

    ...die on your feet, than live on your knees!

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    RE: Webster Phreaky

    If you've seen his comments in other articles, you'd see he's just a troll. Or possibly a right-wing extremist on crack.

    Back on topic, though: Does anyone else see the REAL reason 9/11 was allowed to happen .....

  14. Shadow Systems
    Black Helicopters

    As an American...

    One whom is more like the AC than "Webster Phreaky".

    I fear the president who has declared The Constitution "Just a god damed piece of paper".

    Yes, that very same "piece of paper" you swore to uphold.

    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.

    -Benjamin Franklin.

    I refuse to give up my Liberty.

    So stop trying to take it from me unless you'd like to see me exercising my Constitutional Rights.

    Namely, The Second One.

    You can scream about dirty bombs and terrorists all you want, NONE of it justifies the erosion of We The People's Constitutional Rights.

    I can't WAIT for your a3 to get out of Office so the Country in specific (& the World at large) can take a collective breath, try to right the atrocities you've committed, & (dare I hope) bring you to trial for them.

    Not even NIXON had this low of an approval rating, and that was DURING his impeachment hearings.

    Bush, you are The. Worst. President. Ever.

  15. Captain DaFt

    About people like Webster

    There's this little gem from the BBC:

    Quote:"Their research, published in the journal Science, indicates that people who are sensitive to fear or threat are likely to support a right wing agenda."

    Eh, I was going to rant here, but draw your own conclusions. (Too busy having a laugh at the whole thing, really!)

  16. Anonymous Coward

    @steve -C

    Whilst I don't agree with the "If you've nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear" mantra, your suggestions about posting your address, bank details etc. are just a straw man and equally specious as an argument.

    Even those with nothing to hide are not idiot enough to give you access to their bank account, or to publish their home address and therefore invite every fucking weirdo to send them spam/abusive mail or worse. In fact, your belief that they ought to makes you the idiot.

    However, in answer to your other equally specious requests :

    I have no children.

    I don't drive.

    I earn USD70,000 per annum.

    Now go find a real argument, or the "nothing to hide" bleaters will justifiably argue that you have no counter-argument. You really aren't helping our cause with that rubbish.

  17. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

    The REAL reason 9/11 was allowed to happen:

    Central and South America were running low on bananas?

    Isn't "warrentless surveillance" by default a dirty bomb:

    A dirty bomb is a radiation device that captures electronic output from various initiators, compresses them and then broadcasts the electronic materiel at levels too low to cause immediate death but to have broad band casualties that may suffer lasting harm.

    I post this comment on the stated condition that my:

    "! address! is! never! published!"!

  18. Michael Law
    Paris Hilton

    @Webster Phreaky

    Who are we at war against is it Eastasia or Eurasia?


    Paris, as even she knows that Fox News is just NEWSPEAK

    (been re-reading 1984 recently)

  19. Mike Crawshaw

    @ All - Take a Deep Breath...

    And remember that WP is an attention-seeking troll. The more you reply to him, the more he has his posts justified. He's a Crusader, y'see, bringing the light of Truth, Justice and The American Way to the limp-wristed heathens that benight our world with their Ungodly Ways.

    Let's not get distracted from the article itself by his rant about dirty bombs and wishing death on the EFF who are obviously "peedyfile terrywrists!!!!!" a la Daily Mail headlines.

    The US govt has been caught with its hands in the public's drawers. Now they're saying that, even though it wasn't legal at the time, now it is, and therefore it always has been, and we should be grateful that they are, in effect, able to wiretap any comms at any time for any reason, without following the processes (warrants) that were in place to prevent abuse of their power. It's for your own good. What's particularly scary is that the McCain / Palin partnership are even more god-bothering than Bush, and (based on some of Palin's emails that have come to light) she seems to be the type that will happily send in troops anywhere she likes because God told her to. Maybe God uses her neighbour's dog to talk to her...? (cf. Son of Sam)

    "It is better that a thousand innocents suffer death than a single guilty man be free to spread his heresy"

    Anyone guessing where that comes from wins a slightly-used teabag. No, it wasn't Bush, though I imagine if he heard it, he would use it...

    <- cat, hat, out for a smoke.

  20. amanfromMars Silver badge

    What Greater Power than the Love of Words and ITs Control/Manipulation of their Meaning.

    "A dirty bomb is a radiation device that captures electronic output from various initiators, compresses them and then broadcasts the electronic materiel at levels too low to cause immediate death but to have broad band casualties that may suffer lasting harm.

    I post this comment on the stated condition that my:

    "! address! is! never! published!"!" ... By I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects Posted Friday 19th September 2008 08:16 GMT

    Sounds very much like that radiation device can be further refined to be more effective with certain, more destructive, strings of words which expose harms being done but not shared with the Great Ignorance in Mankind ..... the Uneducated and Undereducated Public, who are Prey to Words Shared in those Closed Meetings/In Camera Session of those who would Think themselves able to Mislead..

  21. Paul Buxton
    Paris Hilton

    @Michael Law

    "been re-reading 1984 recently"

    Me too, the parallels it draws 60 years after it was penned are just plain scary. The amount of DOUBLETHINK is increasing. It should be essential reading in schools in my opinion.

    p.s. replies to Webster are pointless, he's a scared little boy who believes the government-approved conspiracy theories. NEWSPEAK: GOODTHINKER.

    Paris because she's only a rebel from the waist downwards.

  22. Rob Crawford

    Bloody Titles

    Such US surveliance in the past has been passed US companys to give them an advantage in bidding for contracts (against UK companys). They have justified it under the banner of national security. Where the proper term is actually pronounced "looking after your mates"

    The UK spooks have also been known to obtain trasnatlantic communications from their US mates, to save them the bother of obtaining permission for surveliance on this side of the Atlantic.

    @AC 6:06

    I have the feeling that you are deliberately misunderstanding the point that steve-c was attempting to make.

    The point being that either your communications are private or theyre not. If theyre private then goverment (most of all) should be prevented from carrying such intrusion.

    @ Webster

    OK get back in the box and heres the meds that you missed

    The menguin becasue theyre waiting to take over when we least expect it (no I don't mean Linux)

  23. Dr. Mouse

    I do love

    this new fashion to make a new law, then apply it to before that law was made.

    The governament makes eating ice cream illegal, so everyone who ever ate ice cream in the past is a criminal.

    OR, the government makes it legal for a person to drink and drive on their birthday, therefore the presidents friend who got locked up for drink driving after a skinfull celebrating his 50th gets released.

    Applying retrospective laws is absolute idiocy. Even IF they keep it so they are allowed to monitor comms in this manner, the guys who did it before (and the ones who made the descisions) should be charged, as they DID break the law. END OF!

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    destroy the data?

    'They also want the government to destroy materials they've already collected under the program'

    Surely as this is electronic intercepts, all of the data will be stored electronically. How will they ever prove that the data was destroyed?

    It would be pretty easy, if I came down to it, to copy it and then destroy the originals.

    P.S. I've often wondered the same thing about our own DNA database that people want themselves removed from....

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture


    Fear mongering (hopefully) will be gone come this November. Time for a change.

    R.I.P. for Fear Mongering

  26. andy
    Thumb Down


    By Anonymous Coward Posted Friday 19th September 2008 06:08 GMT

    "Whilst I don't agree with the "If you've nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear" mantra, your suggestions about posting your address, bank details etc. are just a straw man and equally specious as an argument."

    You talk rubbish AC. And you're anonymous -- the irony!

    So you dont want 'every fucking weirdo' to know your personal details but you trust the government enough to give them access to all your info?!! You must be crazy.

    What about if you were a rival politician? would you still think it ok? Or you were some kind of activist/campaigner, would you really want the government knowing your every move?

    I bet the authorities are eagerly tapping all of EFF's comms as I write.

    Even if you supposedly 'have nothing to hide' there must be thousands who do, genuinely and leglally, have something to hide from the government/authorities. After all, George Bush and co can seemingly get away with murder -- why should they be trusted?

  27. Law

    ahhh webster

    I wonder if he ever comes back to see the fart-cloud left behind after hitting Post Comment... it might create some paradox where he suddenly implodes because he's outraged by his own outrage or something, creating a super-massive blackhole that swallows reality as we know it.

    aManfrommars - because I have a theory they are one and the same person, a two-face type thing.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters


    "I can only hope that when it DOES happen"

    You seem remarkably sure about it sir, building something in the basement are we? Oops, you've posted it on the web, be sure to tell them how proud you are of them when they're attaching the electrodes...

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    All is revealed

    Hmm.... Has anybody ever seen Webster Freaky & Sarah Palin in the same room ?

    I thought not.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Spelling in the title. It's just a typo, cos you got it right in the article, but it looks dumb.

  31. michael


    "Even those with nothing to hide are not idiot enough to give you access to their bank account, or to publish their home address and therefore invite every fucking weirdo to send them spam/abusive mail or worse. In fact, your belief that they ought to makes you the idiot."

    the point is that that is precicley what the goverment will do with your detials and I can only hope it is by accedent

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Jeremy Clarkson

    We need a Jeremy Clarkson Icon.

    Nothing to Fear, Nothing to hide.

    Oh Sh!t, did i really give out my bank account details & find that someone has used the information to transfer funds ?

    Posted Anon coz that we want to be.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Individual vs bulk disclosure

    While things like email addresses (spam) or bank details (ID theft) are a different matter, I'd suggest that there is a big difference between one person posting their personal details (eg name/address/phone number) here and the government losing large numbers such details. The difference is that in the first case, someone stands out as an individual, and can attract the attention of all kinds of people, either due to the people being just weird, or trying to prove a point or annoy someone they have a cyber-dislike of.

    If a database of the names/addresses of *everyone* in the country was lost, it's not obviously more of a problem for almost anyone on it than being on the electoral roll or in a telephone directory would be.

    Likewise, being on a huge list where the school[s] attended by one's children are listed wouldn't be any obvious risk for the vast bulk of people even if the list ended up published in a newspaper.

  34. Keith Doyle
    Thumb Up

    Only one "Secret Room"?...... NOT!

    Undoubtedly, its not only San Francisco that has a surveillance hub like the "Secret Room." They may not always be in the center of town-- one might ask just what it was about the SF location that was the attraction, and look near similar AT&T points of interest. Or there may be other points where hubs would be useful, such as near significant communications areas where the data collected can be easily forwarded on or the transmission equipment hidden in collections of similar equipment. Some of those multi-billion dollar stealth budgets had to go somewhere. If news of the EFF suit gets around, perhaps some other AT&T employees or ex-employees will decide to spill a few beans about some wheres and whats.

  35. Jason McBride

    Not in the spirt of our founding fathers...

    Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

    --Benjamin Franklin

    "One way of life (Our Democracy) is based upon the will of the majority, and is distinguished by free institutions, representative government, free elections, guarantees of individual liberty, freedom of speech and religion, and freedom from political oppression.

    The second way of life (Communism) is based upon the will of a minority forcibly imposed upon the majority. It relies upon terror and oppression, a controlled press and radio; fixed elections, and the suppression of personal freedoms. "

    --President Truman (1947)

    I want all you jacks to do a little homework assignment. Go ask your Grandparents to describe what rights differentiated the US/UK from the USSR.

    When I hear my uncle say "I've done nothing wrong, why should I care if they spy on me", I want to bitch slap him...

  36. Anonymous Coward

    @AC re Dirty Bomb

    Jees, can you really be "parallelized by fear". That must be pretty damn scary!

    Still, I guess you'd fit into the new fixed-width world of El Reg a lot better as a parallelogram.

  37. Snert Lee

    Bush's Burning Question

    How much can be chopped out of the constitution before the country stops being America?

  38. Anonymous Coward

    @ Michael Law

    We're at war with Eastasia. We've always been at war with Eastasia...

  39. Pete "oranges" B.

    This string of comments...

    ... reminds oranges of Gene Spafford's description of Usenet:

    “Usenet is like a herd of performing elephants with diarrhea- massive, difficult to redirect, awe-inspiring, entertaining, and a source of mind boggling amounts of excrement when you least expect it”

    Come to think of it, that describes the government too.

    And the Parties.

    Thinking about them makes me depressed.

    Screwit! Who wants pie!

  40. Anonymous Coward

    let's help webster

    I already saw one comment suggesting a chemical bomb would be better than a dirty nuke. Any more plausible threats we can inform WP of that he can get his knickers in a justifiable twist over? Or should we bait him with some of these?

    AC because I don't need any more wierd-o attention, thank u very much

This topic is closed for new posts.

Other stories you might like