Free Thinker Radio (2/3/22): We Are Not Going Quietly

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Lina Hidalgo
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo is being challenged within the Democratic party – ABC13 Houston
Erica Davis, a Democrat, is one of several contenders trying to oust Hidalgo and win the nomination in the March primary “We cannot afford another four years of ineffective and inefficient leadership,” . “We have to have leadership that engages the community. I ask the voter. When have you seen the current judge in your community?”

Alexandra del Moral Mealer who  Mattress Mack endorsed is one of nine candidates trying to win the GOP nomination.”Crime and a body count. It’s unacceptable,” said Mealer. ” The homicides get the headlines. How many carjacking’s are there? How many break-ins there? We don’t even talk about all the property theft.”Humble ISD’s school board president Martina Lemond Dixon is another working to win the March primary. She said public safety including crime and flood control needs to be prioritized above all of us.

“I just cannot stand what I’m seeing. I know there is a better way,” said Dixon. “If the current county judge comes out of her primary, one thing I will say, if we do want to see a change in Harris County, I am the biggest threat to make that happen.

Patriot Act
The PATRIOT Act Should Have Ended With Afghanistan | Jonathan Hofer (
Ushered in after the September 11th terrorist attacks, many of the clauses and provisions from the PATRIOT Act continue to this day. President Biden would likely wish we would forget. Afterall, Biden has taken credit for the law and has “repeatedly claimed that a bill he wrote in 1994 was essentially the same as the 2001 Patriot Act.” But just as Biden’s view on the war in Afghanistan has evolved since the time he was a supporter, so too should he reconsider his advocacy of the law that has become one of the worst civil liberties abuses of the 2000s. ​​​​​​​

Armed with the PATRIOT Act, the government, chiefly the National Security Agency (NSA), enacted sweeping dragnet policies such as bulk metadata collection, wiretaps, and other domestic surveillance measures. It authorized indefinite detentions, gave law enforcement generous allowances for gag orders and searches of private business records not previously enjoyed by the government.

It was not just 9/11 on the minds of politicians. Few may recall that the 2001 Anthrax Attacks also played an important role in the legislation’s provisions. Just one week after the September 11th attacks, letters containing anthrax spores were sent across America, creating the worst biological attack in American history.

As the ACLU pointed out, the PATRIOT Act increased the government’s power to spy in four key areas:

  • Records searches. It expands the government’s ability to look at records on an individual’s activity being held by a third party.
  • Secret searches. It expands the government’s ability to search private property without notice to the owner.
  • Intelligence searches. It expands a narrow exception to the Fourth Amendment that had been created for the collection of foreign intelligence information.
  • “Trap and trace” searches. It expands another Fourth Amendment exception for spying that collects “addressing” information about the origin and destination of communications, as opposed to the content.

This allowed the government to skirt around requirements to show evidence that the subjects of search orders are an “agent of a foreign power.” When asking for permission for covert searches the FBI was no longer required to demonstrate any reasonable suspicion for certain records. Judicial oversight was also butchered. The government needed only to make a broad assertion that what they were doing was acceptable. As the ACLU once stressed, the judges hearing these certifications lacked the authority to reject government search applications. Moreover, it was not just incriminating activities that could get people in hot water. The nature of these FBI searches could be based on a person’s First Amendment rights, including what a person wrote, what books they read, or websites they visited.


Republicans take aim at Biden’s Federal Reserve nominees at tense confirmation hearing – CBS News


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