NSA: Collect it All! | Unfilter 97

NSA: Collect it All! | Unfilter 97

The release of Glenn Greenwald’s new book has brought a wave of new NSA revelations. We’ll focuses in on the major ones, and discuss the broader context of these revelations.

Then all sides of the Ukraine conflict turn to dirty tactics, Colorado has a solution to their Cannabis banking problem, and much more!

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— Show Notes —

NSA is Crazy

In one remarkable slide presented at a 2011 meeting of five nations\’ intelligence agencies and revealed here for the first time, the NSA described its \”collection posture\” as \”Collect it All,\” \”Process it All,\” \”Exploit it All,\” \”Partner it All,\” \”Sniff it All\” and, ultimately, \”Know it All.\”


In a one-month period last year, for example, a single unit of the NSA, the Global Access Operations unit, collected data on more than 97 billion e-mails and 124 billion phone calls from around the world; more than 3 billion of those calls and e-mails were collected as they passed through the United States. As of 2012, the agency was processing more than 20 billion telecommunications per day. In a single month in 2011, the NSA collected 71 million calls and e-mails from Poland alone


The NSA achieves these ends by working hand in hand with private telecommunications and Internet service providers.


One NSA document describes an unnamed corporate partner as “aggressively involved in shaping traffic to run signals of interest past our monitors” and reports that in a single month, this top-secret, public-private partnership yielded more than 6 billion records of telephone calls and Internet activity.


Other documents describe X-KEYSCORE, the NSA’s most powerful tool, which, as its name implies, enables the agency to track every keystroke on a computer, permitting the agency to monitor in real time all of a user’s e-mail, social-media and Web-browsing activity. In a single month in 2012, X-KEYSCORE collected 41 billion records for one NSA unit. Greenwald contends that this is the program Snowden was referring to when he said that, with an e-mail address, he could tap into any American’s communications.


He notes that the NSA collects data not only for counterterrorism purposes but for economic and diplomatic advantage.

NSA Docs Detail Efforts To Collect Data From Microsoft’s Skype, SkyDrive, And Outlook.com


Greenwald published a set of documents, some of which were not new and some that were. Inside the set were four slides detailing the NSA\’s relationship with Microsoft, as well as the company\’s work with the FBI to provide for quicker and easier deliverance of required files and the like

PDF of New Slides from Greenwald’s new Book

Sony Pictures Buys Film Rights to Book on Snowden


Sony said on Wednesday that it had acquired rights to Mr. Greenwald\’s book, \”No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA and the U. S. Surveillance State,\” for the producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli. Mr. Wilson and Ms. Broccoli are known for their work on James Bond films like \”Skyfall\” and \”Quantum of Solace,\” both of which were released by Sony and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

Orwellian threats caused the New York Times to spike a story on NSA spying way back in 2004


Working with New York Times reporter James Risen to make the story public. But Risen\’s editors decided to run the story by the government. They wanted to get the government\’s take, before the Times revealed \”The Program.\” Kirk says top White House officials made three arguments to Times editors, in trying to convince them not to run the story.

  1. It\’s completely legal.

  2. It\’s a vulnerable secret. If you reveal it, hundreds of thousands of Americans may die in a future attack.

  3. It\’s working. You wouldn\’t believe the threats we\’re stopping.

Former Editor Bill Keller spiked the story, outraging Risen.

Edward Snowden makes video explaining how to avoid NSA tracking emails

Mr Snowden made the video last year for Glenn Greenwald in an effort to get the then-Guardian reporter to communicate securely with him online so he could send over documents he wanted to leak.

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Russia says open to talks if Ukraine pays off some gas debt


Russia will restart gas talks with Ukraine if its new leaders pay off at least part of its gas debt, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Wednesday, softening Moscow\’s stance in a dispute that has raised fears of a new \”gas war\”.

Ukraine Stops Water Supply to Crimea

\”The North Crimean canal is currently operating in a mode that has been adjusted to meet the needs of the Kherson Oblast\’s water users due to the absence of constructive proposals to establish contractual relations for providing the Autonomous Republic of Crimea with water resources for domestic water supply and irrigation,\” said the statement of May 8.

Nuland has tough time justifying US involvement in Ukraine


During a two hour House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing, the US
Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland shared her assessment of the US role in Ukraine\’s crisis
and the upcoming presidential election.


  • Washington is offering \”financial, technical and
    non-lethal security assistance\”
    for the May 25 election.

\”In addition to $92 million in FY2013 State/USAID funds and
$86 million in FY2014 funds, we are providing an additional $50
million in technical assistance and the $1 billion dollar loan
guarantee under the authority passed by Congress on April

The US electoral assistance includes \”$11 million for
non-partisan election activities, including efforts to support
voter education and civic participation\”
as well as
participation as observers in the upcoming poll.

\”In addition to the 100 OSCE observers we are sending, the
United States is supporting 255 long-term observers and over 3300
short-term observers,\”
Nuland said.

Financial aid also involves \”$18 million in non-lethal
security assistance to the Ukrainian armed forces
State Border Guard Service to enable them to fulfill their core

Biden son’s appointment to Ukraine gas company raises no conflict of interest, White House says


The White House on Tuesday brushed aside questions about whether the involvement of Vice President Joe Biden\’s son in a Ukrainian natural gas company raised ethical issues at a time when the administration is promoting energy diversity in the country.

Weed Wackers:

John Mica, fake joint roll into pot hearing


The subcommittee hearing came in response to the Washington D.C. Council\’s recently passed bill that would decriminalize small amounts of marijuana. The new law won\’t take effect until Congress — which ultimately has oversight over D.C.\’s laws — finishes its review.

With regular banks wary of pot, Colorado lawmakers okay special bank for marijuana trade


They approved a plan to setup a network of uninsured cooperatives that would offer basic banking services to pot businesses.

The so-called \”cannabis credit co-ops\” would function like credit unions, allowing licensed marijuana businesses to pool resources, have checking accounts and take out loans. The co-ops would be able to make investments on behalf of their members in municipal bonds and other securities.

Bank of America declares it is willing to accommodate new marijuana related businesses, according to Jim McIntire, Treasurer for the state of Washington. \”I mean, in fact, we\’re already taking some tax revenues, I believe, for medical marijuana. So it\’s not a real issue in terms of their perception.\”

3 Months Since Legalizing Marijuana, Here\’s What Colorado Looks Like

The state\’s Department of Revenue reports that marijuana retailers sold nearly $19 million in recreational weed in March, up from $14 million in February. The first three months of legal weed have netted about $7.3 million in taxes, not including medical marijuana sales taxes and licenses, which bring the number to $12.6 million.

Retail marijuana sales taxes brought in $1.4 million in January, $1.43 million in February and now $1.898 million in March — a clear upward trajectory. And total marijuana tax transfers and distributions went from $2.927 million in January to $4.077 million in March.
the up-trending numbers indicate that initial sales weren\’t simply the result of \”new-toy\” excitement wherein everyone was buying pot just because they could.

Over the same time period, crime in Denver has slightly declined, making opponents who said it would result in more trafficking seem kind of silly. It\’s created a modest number of jobs ranging from \”budtending\” and marijuana journalism to farm labor and ownership.
Legal cannabis sales in the United States are projected to reach as high as $2.57 billion this year, split among the 21 states that allow the sale of some form of marijuana. That\’s up from $1.53 billion a year ago.

The Colorado legislature has already formed a plan to spend $33 million of the marijuana taxes on school nurses and public education on marijuana. Even Colorado cops plan to get a chunk of the new revenue, asking for 10-15% of the proceeds for DUI enforcement and fighting diversion to other states and unlicensed sales.

The bulk of sales, however, continue to be in medical marijuana, which has been legal in Colorado since 2000 and recorded $35 million in sales in March. However, since recreational weed is more heavily taxed, it could still rapidly outpace medical marijuana in total tax dollars.


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