Congress Authorizes Spying On All Americans Without Due Process

December 11, 2014   |   ANTIMEDIA

Aaron Nelson
December 11, 2104

(TheAntiMedia) Yesterday, the House passed H.R. 4681. The bill, which was also passed by the Senate on Tuesday, authorizes spying on all Americans without due process. It grants the executive branch virtually unlimited access to the communications of every American.

The commentary below was published by U.S. Representative Justin Amash (yes, a member of Congress himself) on his official Facebook page late Wednesday night:

When I learned that the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2015 was being rushed to the floor for a vote—with little debate and only a voice vote expected (i.e., simply declared “passed” with almost nobody in the room)—I asked my legislative staff to quickly review the bill for unusual language. What they discovered is one of the most egregious sections of law I’ve encountered during my time as a representative: It grants the executive branch virtually unlimited access to the communications of every American.

On Wednesday afternoon, I went to the House floor to demand a roll call vote on the bill so that everyone’s vote would have to be recorded. I also sent the letter below to every representative.

With more time to spread the word, we would have stopped this bill, which passed 325-100. Thanks to the 99 other representatives—44 Republicans and 55 Democrats—who voted to protect our rights and uphold the Constitution. And thanks to my incredibly talented staff.

Amash also attached a copy of the letter he sent to his colleagues in Congress, which warned them of the dangers of passing the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2015 [H.R. 4681]:


Block New Spying on U.S. Citizens: Vote “NO” on H.R. 4681

Dear Colleague:

The intelligence reauthorization bill, which the House will vote on today, contains a troubling new provision that for the first time statutorily authorizes spying on U.S. citizens without legal process.

Last night, the Senate passed an amended version of the intelligence reauthorization bill with a new Sec. 309—one the House never has considered. Sec. 309 authorizes “the acquisition, retention, and dissemination” of nonpublic communications, including those to and from U.S. persons. The section contemplates that those private communications of Americans, obtained without a court order, may be transferred to domestic law enforcement for criminal investigations.

To be clear, Sec. 309 provides the first statutory authority for the acquisition, retention, and dissemination of U.S. persons’ private communications obtained without legal process such as a court order or a subpoena. The administration currently may conduct such surveillance under a claim of executive authority, such as E.O. 12333. However, Congress never has approved of using executive authority in that way to capture and use Americans’ private telephone records, electronic communications, or cloud data.

Supporters of Sec. 309 claim that the provision actually reins in the executive branch’s power to retain Americans’ private communications. It is true that Sec. 309 includes exceedingly weak limits on the executive’s retention of Americans’ communications. With many exceptions, the provision requires the executive to dispose of Americans’ communications within five years of acquiring them—although, as HPSCI admits, the executive branch already follows procedures along these lines.

In exchange for the data retention requirements that the executive already follows, Sec. 309 provides a novel statutory basis for the executive branch’s capture and use of Americans’ private communications. The Senate inserted the provision into the intelligence reauthorization bill late last night. That is no way for Congress to address the sensitive, private information of our constituents—especially when we are asked to expand our government’s surveillance powers.

I urge you to join me in voting “no” on H.R. 4681, the intelligence reauthorization bill, when it comes before the House today.


Justin Amash
Member of Congress

U.S. Representatives Who Voted NO:

Brooks (AL)
Broun (GA)
Clark (MA)
Clarke (NY)
Clawson (FL)
Duncan (SC)
Duncan (TN)
Graves (GA)
Griffith (VA)
Hastings (FL)
Heck (WA)
Jackson Lee
Lee (CA)
Poe (TX)
Roe (TN)
Scott, Austin
Swalwell (CA)
Weber (TX)


U.S. Rep. Justin Amash

Just last week Justin Amash was one of only 10 members of Congress to vote No on a war propaganda bill Ron Paul says ‘recklessly declares war on Russia‘ and essentially authorizes Obama to supply lethal weapons to the Ukrainian Government.

Who is this Justin Amash, you ask?

Here are 5 reasons why Justin Amash is leading the resistance provided by the founder of People Against the NDAA, Dan Johnson:

1. He regularly speaks out about the NDAA

Within days of the Senate vote on the 2012 NDAA, Amash published “The Truth about the New Detainee Policy” in Red State, one of America’s most influential Republican blogs, slamming the Senate’s decision to allow the indefinite military detention of citizens without trial. He gathered a coalition to fight the sectionscalled out their dangers in town hallsfact-checked the House Armed Service Committee’s “fact sheet” on the detention provisions, and he continues to support amendments to block the NDAA in the House.

2. He introduced the Smith-Amash amendment the year after the 2012 NDAA passed

Talk is cheap, particularly in politics. Yet Rep. Amash did more than just talk. Together with Adam Smith (D-WA), Amash introduced the Smith-Amash amendment to repeal the detention provisions in the 2012 NDAA. Though it failed in the House, Amash was able to successfully show that Republicans were complete hypocrites when they talk about Constitutional rights. The amendment failed 237-182.

3. He heralded the Smith-Gibson Amendment in 2013, and Smith-Broun in 2014

Not to be deterred by the failure of his last amendment, Amash supported the identical Smith-Gibson Amendment the next year, once again to repeal the detention provisions hidden in the 2012 NDAA. This time, Amash and Smith were able to gather an even larger coalition of Representatives, bringing the vote to a much closer loss of only 200-226. He voted “yea” once again on the Smith-Broun amendment in 2014, bringing the total times he supported an amendment to repeal the detention provisions to three.

4. He even goes outside of Congress

This is one thing that makes Amash stand out above just about anyone in Congress. When a bill was introduced in the Washington state legislature with intent to prohibit the 2012 NDAA’s detention provisions, Rep. Amash sent a detailed letter of his support for a bill that would never affect him and was nowhere near his district.

5. He won’t allow false fixes to slant his vote

One of the most dangerous threats to true liberty is false security. How better to disable a resistance movement, than, while changing nothing, convincing them they have won?

Amash has so far had none of that. He correctly spoke out against the Feinstein-Lee Amendment in 2012, a false fix heralded by many as the end of NDAA indefinite detention, even when powerful Senators like Rand Paul and Mike Lee supported it.


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  1. I just read the summary and the bill itself (as submitted to the Senate) and cannot find any language in it referring to what this article describes. Please provide the section and paragraphs you are referring to so I can verify this myself.

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    (a) In General- Title V of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 3091 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

    The above is the section.

    The following is one that might be applicable!?!


    (a) In General- The Director of National Intelligence, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense and the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, shall conduct an analysis of the relative costs and benefits of potential improvements to the process for investigating persons who are proposed for access to classified information and adjudicating whether such persons satisfy the criteria for obtaining and retaining access to such information.

    (b) Contents of Analysis- In conducting the analysis required by subsection (a), the Director of National Intelligence shall evaluate the costs and benefits associated with–

    (1) the elimination of manual processes in security clearance investigations and adjudications, if possible, and automating and integrating the elements of the investigation process, including–

    (A) the clearance application process;

    (B) case management;

    (C) adjudication management;

    (D) investigation methods for the collection, analysis, storage, retrieval, and transfer of data and records; and

    (E) records management for access and eligibility determinations;

    (2) the elimination or reduction, if possible, of the use of databases and information sources that cannot be accessed and processed automatically electronically, or modification of such databases and information sources, to enable electronic access and processing;

    (3) the use of government-developed and commercial technology for continuous monitoring and evaluation of government and commercial data sources that can identify and flag information pertinent to adjudication guidelines and eligibility determinations;

    (4) the standardization of forms used for routine reporting required of cleared personnel (such as travel, foreign contacts, and financial disclosures) and use of continuous monitoring technology to access databases containing such reportable information to independently obtain and analyze reportable data and events;

    (5) the establishment of an authoritative central repository of personnel security information that is accessible electronically at multiple levels of classification and eliminates technical barriers to rapid access to information necessary for eligibility determinations and reciprocal recognition thereof;

    (6) using digitally processed fingerprints, as a substitute for ink or paper prints, to reduce error rates and improve portability of data;

    (7) expanding the use of technology to improve an applicant's ability to discover the status of a pending security clearance application or reinvestigation; and

    (8) using government and publicly available commercial data sources, including social media, that provide independent information pertinent to adjudication guidelines to improve quality and timeliness, and reduce costs, of investigations and reinvestigations.


    My worry would be that, of course, after figuring cost, it must be cheaper to spy using already existing networks to avoid the need for programs, technology or processes that inhibit information distribution and gathering!! Once this is most positively determined by evaluation, all media can then be legally examined and submitted as intelligence!!

    Below is the link..

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    (a) In General.–Title V of the National Security Act of 1947 (50
    U.S.C. 3091 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following new


    “(a) Requirement for Annual Audits.–The head of each covered entity
    shall ensure that there is a full financial audit of such covered
    entity each year beginning with fiscal year 2014. Such audits may be
    conducted by an internal or external independent accounting or auditing
    “(b) Requirement for Unqualified Opinion.–Beginning as early as
    practicable, but in no event later than the audit required under
    subsection (a) for fiscal year 2016, the head of each covered entity
    shall take all reasonable steps necessary to ensure that each audit
    required under subsection (a) contains an unqualified opinion on the
    financial statements of such covered entity for the fiscal year covered
    by such audit.
    “(c) Reports to Congress.–The chief financial officer of each
    covered entity shall provide to the congressional intelligence
    committees an annual audit report from an accounting or auditing
    organization on each audit of the covered entity conducted pursuant to
    subsection (a).
    “(d) Covered Entity Defined.–In this section, the term `covered
    entity' means the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the
    Central Intelligence Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the
    National Security Agency, the National Reconnaissance Office, and the
    National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.''.
    (b) Table of Contents Amendment.–The table of contents in the first
    section of the National Security Act of 1947 is amended by inserting
    after the item relating to section 508 the following new item:

    “Sec. 509. Auditability of certain elements of the intelligence

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  4. What I just posted is directly from the legislation in question. Obtained directly from, and I'm still not seeing what you are.

    Post a Reply
  5. Please, I am asking you on a very personal level for a helping hand up, and you
    can really help by just visiting this link to read my story and possibly
    find it in your heart to offer a contribution, a prayer or just leave
    kind words of hope and inspiration or just share my story elsewhere.

    Thank you very much for reading this post and always have a blessed day. Also
    if this post offends you in any way, I sincerely apologize. (And I mean that)

    (Link may have to be cut & pasted in your browser, thanks)

    Post a Reply

    Post a Reply
  7. (Sec. 309) Directs the heads of the DNI, CIA, DIA, NSA, NRO, and NGA to ensure that there is a full financial audit of their respective entities each year and that each audit contains an unqualified opinion of the entity's financial statements. Requires the chief financial officer of each entity to provide an annual audit report to Congress.

    Post a Reply
  8. Amendment IV The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized

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    (a) Definitions.–In this section:
    (1) Covered communication.–The term “covered communication''
    means any nonpublic telephone or electronic communication acquired
    without the consent of a person who is a party to the
    communication, including communications in electronic storage.
    (2) Head of an element of the intelligence community.–The term
    “head of an element of the intelligence community'' means, as
    (A) the head of an element of the intelligence community;
    (B) the head of the department or agency containing such
    (3) United states person.–The term “United States person''
    has the meaning given that term in section 101 of the Foreign
    Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1801).
    (b) Procedures for Covered Communications.–
    (1) Requirement to adopt.–Not later than 2 years after the
    date of the enactment of this Act each head of an element of the
    intelligence community shall adopt procedures approved by the
    Attorney General for such element that ensure compliance with the
    requirements of paragraph (3).
    (2) Coordination and approval.–The procedures required by
    paragraph (1) shall be–
    (A) prepared in coordination with the Director of National
    Intelligence; and
    (B) approved by the Attorney General prior to issuance.
    (3) Procedures.–
    (A) Application.–The procedures required by paragraph (1)
    shall apply to any intelligence collection activity not
    otherwise authorized by court order (including an order or
    certification issued by a court established under subsection
    (a) or (b) of section 103 of the Foreign Intelligence
    Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1803)), subpoena, or
    similar legal process that is reasonably anticipated to result
    in the acquisition of a covered communication to or from a
    United States person and shall permit the acquisition,
    retention, and dissemination of covered communications subject
    to the limitation in subparagraph (B).
    (B) Limitation on retention.–A covered communication shall
    not be retained in excess of 5 years, unless–
    (i) the communication has been affirmatively
    determined, in whole or in part, to constitute foreign
    intelligence or counterintelligence or is necessary to
    understand or assess foreign intelligence or
    (ii) the communication is reasonably believed to
    constitute evidence of a crime and is retained by a law
    enforcement agency;
    (iii) the communication is enciphered or reasonably
    believed to have a secret meaning;
    (iv) all parties to the communication are reasonably
    believed to be non-United States persons;
    (v) retention is necessary to protect against an
    imminent threat to human life, in which case both the
    nature of the threat and the information to be retained
    shall be reported to the congressional intelligence
    committees not later than 30 days after the date such
    retention is extended under this clause;
    (vi) retention is necessary for technical assurance or
    compliance purposes, including a court order or discovery
    obligation, in which case access to information retained
    for technical assurance or compliance purposes shall be
    reported to the congressional intelligence committees on an
    annual basis; or
    (vii) retention for a period in excess of 5 years is
    approved by the head of the element of the intelligence
    community responsible for such retention, based on a
    determination that retention is necessary to protect the
    national security of the United States, in which case the
    head of such element shall provide to the congressional
    intelligence committees a written certification

    (I) the reasons extended retention is necessary to
    protect the national security of the United States;
    (II) the duration for which the head of the element
    is authorizing retention;
    (III) the particular information to be retained;
    (IV) the measures the element of the intelligence
    community is taking to protect the privacy interests of
    United States persons or persons located inside the
    United States.

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  10. That's cool its not for about 100 years…if the u.s. lasts that long…

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  11. Cody Prevatt HR 4681 (Sec. 309) Directs the heads of the DNI, CIA, DIA, NSA, NRO, and NGA to ensure that there is a full financial audit of their respective entities each year and that each audit contains an unqualified opinion of the entity's financial statements. Requires the chief financial officer of each entity to provide an annual audit report to Congress.

    Post a Reply
  12. there are so many things i could say about this one . lets start with something simple. if they have the ability to not just control but monitor what you say , it goes aginst our amendments . then it would only be a matter of time befor they start breaking into houses stateing " we were protecting our nation from potintial domestic terrorists ( freedom fighters , and or peacful protesters makeing peacful protest plans) from disrupting the system. in additon , even a simple phone call to your mother just to say high and see if shes doing ok will be scrutinized . but wont that mean they cant hide either? ya damn right… the amount of information that could be obtained from even one counsler , polotician , or govenment official would be enough to start an investigation multipal times over. eventualy it would become too much contraversy and the nation would rise up because of all the information being spued across the net about what these people are REALLY about. i wonder how far theyll go till they relize that there actualy causeing themselves more harm than good?

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  13. i cant wait till the world stands up against wrongdoers, stop rich cuz they are the backbone of misery, they keep us in misery cuz then they can let us do all they want, 100k not enough for murder then they give 1 mill that aint enough then they give 2 mill and so on and so on,. and up till the point where PEOPLE realize THAT LEADERSHIP is the BIGGEST brainwash you can get on a dailly basis, stop excecuting orders like a dumbfuck, escpeccially army fucks are the most brainwashed idiots in the world, they kill people cuz they get told it is to protect, they kill cuz they hear that other guy is badass and want obama dead, obama be mad sends in troops (troops to retarded to realize they just got used to kill another) no matter how u put it, IF god is fact and IF you beleive in god, THEN I TELL YOU RIGHT NOW TO STOP ALLOWING YOURSELF TO BE ORDERED BY SOME RETARDEDPIGGFACE CALLED OBAMA AND LISTEN TO WHAT GOD HAS TOLD YOU, HE SAID DO NOT MURDER DO NOT STEAL DO NOT PLUNDER,
    and yes a lot of retards that went in the army dont realize THEY MURDER STEAL AND PLUNDER, and they give themselfs the lies they need in order to sleep well in the evening, still a RETARD that does something for another without real questions,, to much IDIOTS that follow leaders blindly as if they have absolutly no brains themselfs, so many retards that kill for there allah so many retards that kill for there god so many retards that kill for there obama or there saddam hussein, so many RETARDS blindly follow what others tell them to do, why ?? cuz they are to RETARDED to realize, in the end the whole world can be forgiven for his and her sins, yet people keep foolishly do stuff not for themselfs,
    and now i will be considered nuts or crazy, or even a stupid guy for having an opinion based on what faith TRIES to learn everyone,
    1st ammenment said DO NOT KILL,

    this does not mean YOUR ALLOWED TO BE RETARDED ENOUGH TO KILL CUZ SOME PIGGFACE told you it is god that spoke to him and told you to do it . STOP BE THAT RETARD.
    this does also NOT mean your allowed to be RETARDED enough to kill cuz someone said to PROTECT your country in a world WHERE IT IS ONLY 1 EARTH, if it was meant for us to have wars then we would not be on the same planet, we where put on this world to show we are good, yet everyone be the retard and doesnt get it AT ALL.

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  14. laws are bullshit, they are created by a retarded pigg that felt he was better and thus is allowed to do more, still same slavery that was once our treu rule, we freed ourselfs from that tirranny, and yet we foolishly contineu to be there slaves!!!!. if your that hitman?! then YOUR ONE OF THE SLAVES, if your that army fuck
    THEN YOUR ONE OF THE SLAVES, if your vice president YOUR ONE OF THE SLAVES, even better put, if you are not the pope, the imam, the general or president, THEN YHOUR A SLAVE, and you just CONTINEU TO BE THE RETARD AND FOLLOW, wasnt it GOD THAT TOLD YOU TO TAKE YOUR FREE WILL ??????
    wasnt it allah that said DO NOT MURDER??
    i can contineu whole day long, doesnt make any difference cuz TO MANY RETARDS BLINDLY FOLLOW THERE LEADER CUZ THEY ARE AFRAID

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  15. wasnt it god that gave us only 10 commandments to listen to in order for us to life in harmoney as one species ? and wasnt it man that was TO RETARDED to realize what is fact and what is fiction ?
    still you dumbasses cant see can you ? still to blind to open your eyes to the facts around you wich you foolishly denie are there in order to sleep well tonight !!

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  16. Cut funding tech em real quick people should be able to stop paying gov taxes if they disagree that would give full controll back to the people

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  17. The reasoning the NSA and other organizations use to justify this kind of stuff is so terrible it deserves a place in a textbook specifically dedicated to terrible ideas. By their own reasoning, all physical mail should be viewable by the NSA. You don't need proof to know foreign intelligence is flying around the postal service: It's just common sense in a world full of spies. That isn't a reason to suddenly start opening all of our mail for spy material.
    Any American supporting these kinds of measures needs to grow some gonads and realize there isn't a perfect world where we can all be perfectly safe. You only open the gateway to worse forms of cruelty by allowing such spying upon our own citizens.

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