Posts Tagged ‘ US Congress ’

Walmart DVD to Digital: Is This a Scam or Something Else?

We’vre recently started seeing commercials regarding a new “service” that Walmart is launching which they are calling “DVD to Digital”. My GF and I were just sitting here discussing this and it’s pretty funny because just last night I was thinking about the implications of this so called “service”.

Walmart is charging customers to bring in the DVD’s and they will copy the movies and then make them available online.So you pay for a DVD and now Walmart wants to charge you to copy them (is this even legal??), upload them to a server and then make them available to you to watch from any PC, tablet phone or other device.

To me it sounds like Walmart is going to be making a move on the corner that Netflix has which is the ability to allow a subscriber to view movies via the internet and with many different devices.Walmart will make money over fist in this deal because they get their customers to PAY THEM to copy and upload the files and this will then allow them to collect a huge database of movies which THEY WERE PAID TO MAKE. After that, they simply buy the licenses they need and then open up shop, charging everybody to watch those same movies online.

So after doing a little research online,  looking in to DVD copyright laws, it seems to me there may be something “dirty” in all of this. Sony is just one of of the many companies that has made a huge investment in adding “protection to their DVD disks in order to prevent them from being copied. Here’s a little of what I found….

SOURCE

When movie studios were preparing to release movies in a digital format for distribution on disks, they learned from the mistakes of the music industry. Hollywood insisted the disks include a layer of copy protection that music CDs don’t contain. But the technology that protects DVDs was cracked within a few years of the disks going on sale. (Actually copying a DVD would require extensive technical know-how that’s well beyond most consumers.) Congress, meanwhile, passed a law that made it illegal to produce or distribute tools that enable consumers to circumvent copy protection.

So it’s illegal to copy a DVD? Interestingly, no. Judges have said that consumers have a right to copy a DVD for their own use—say, for backing it up to another disk or perhaps watching it on another device, such as an iPod. That’s the same “fair use” rule that made it legal to tape television shows for watching later, perhaps on a different TV. The problem is that consumers can’t duplicate DVDs without software tools that get around the copy protection on those disks. It is those tools that Congress outlawed.

So based on the current copyright laws, any and all software that could be used to take a DVD and make it digital is ILLEGAL and therefore using it BREAKS THE LAW. So knowing this, how in the hell is Walmart going to take all these DVD’s, which have copy protection, and make them digital WITHOUT BREAKING THE LAW???

After doing a little more looking I found that Walmart has apparently worked out some sort of “deal” with the top five movie studio’s in Hollywood (20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures and Warner Bros) in order to be able to pull this stunt off. So now we have Walmart making backroom deals with Hollywood studio’s…. I wonder if they already have a deal in place which will allow them to charge customers to access their movie database once it’s built… They are building this by charging customers on the front end and then they will charge customers on the back end as well once they have a grip of movies in their collection.

WOW! What a deal, right?

 

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National Movement Launched To Impeach Obama

Well it’s about time! The man can’t produce any real documents to even show he exists, let alone should be president!

The five core reasons why Obama should be impeached

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
Thursday, April 12, 2012

A new national movement has been launched to impeach President Obama based around five core issues which clearly demonstrate how Obama has flagrantly violated the Constitution.

The campaign, backed by director, producer, actor and writer Sean Stone, is a follow-up to North Carolina Republican Walter Jones’ efforts to bring the administration to account for launching unconstitutional wars without the authorization of Congress. Jones’ recently introduced resolution states that such actions represent “an impeachable high crime and misdemeanor.”

The five core reasons for impeachment proceedings to be launched can be summarized as follows;

1) Despite promising otherwise, Barack Obama committed U.S. military resources to overthrow Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi without any kind of congressional authorization whatsoever and without citing any evidence that Libya under Gaddafi was a threat to the security of the United States. Furthermore, Obama brazenly undermined the power of Congress by insisting his authority came from the United Nations Security Council and that Congressional approval was not necessary. “I don’t even have to get to the Constitutional question,” Obama churlishly remarked.

2) On New Years Eve 2011, Obama signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act which includes provisions that permit the abduction and military detention without trial of U.S. citizens. Despite Obama claiming he would not use the provisions to incarcerate U.S. citizens, it was his administration that specifically demanded these powers be included in the final NDAA bill.

3) The passage of the Obamacare bill, under which Americans will be forced to buy health insurance, is clearly anathema to the Constitution. “The individual mandate is unprecedented and exceeds Congress’s power to regulate interstate commerce. If it is allowed to stand, Congress will be able to impose any kind of economic mandate as part of any kind of national regulatory scheme,” writes Ilya Shapiro, a Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute.

4) Obama’s role in the economic looting of America since he took office is unprecedented. Specifically, Obama violated the Constitution’s Takings and Due Process Clauses when he bullied the secured creditors of automaker Chrysler into accepting 30 cents on the dollar while politically connected labor unions and preferential others received better deals.

5) Finally, Obama’s use of signing statements shows his desire to continue in the vein of George W. Bush and rule by executive fiat. This is a direct violation of Article II of the Constitution.

You can support this effort to get political momentum behind starting the impeachment process against Obama by forwarding this article and video to your network on Facebook, Twitter, You Tube and every other platform of communication.

If the makers of Kony 2012 can receive international viral coverage for putting out a film that was little more than a veiled call for another unconstitutional invasion, this call to impeach Obama deserves equal attention.

Read further information about the reasons why Obama should be impeached here.

SOURCE

Virginia Legislature Votes to Oppose Indefinite Detention of Americans without Trial

Yeah!!!! Finally there is a state that had the guts to stand up to the fed’s!

David Wallechinsky, Noel Brinkerhoff
allgov.com
Thursday, March 01, 2012

Lawmakers in Virginia have put aside their partisan differences about health care, contraception and other issues to officially oppose a controversial law passed by Congress and signed by President Barack Obama that allows the federal government to detain Americans without trial for alleged terrorism-related activities.
By votes of 39-1 in the state Senate and 96-4 in the House of Delegates, the legislature approved a bill “to nullify” provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2012.
The Virginia legislation is largely symbolic, as it does not prevent federal agents from arresting terrorism suspects. But the legislative action is part “of a larger NDAA nullification campaign around the country.”
Seven other legislatures are also considering anti-NDAA bills. In addition, several local governments have passed resolutions that either denouncement the federal act or require noncompliance with it.
As previously reported by AllGov:
Obama’s supporters, including Republicans who normally oppose almost everything he does, have tried to defend the bill by saying that it doesn’t really go as far as its critics claim. However, the wording of the act, although carefully phrased, is nonetheless clear.
For example, Obama apologists say that it does not codify indefinite detention. But section 1021 (c-1) allows “Detention under the law of war without trial until the end of hostilities.” A U.S. president can take the position that he is engaged in a war without end. In fact, that is exactly what Presidents Bush and Obama have done. In addition, section (b-2) states that the law applies not just to members of al-Qaeda and the Taliban, but to any person who has “substantially supported” “associated forces.” Because these terms are not defined, Obama would appear to be free to interpret them as he chooses…as would be any future president.
Supporters of the president—and the members of Congress of both parties who passed the bill—dismiss the contention that American citizens can be detained indefinitely. Again the wording is clever, but disturbing. Section 1022 (b-1) states that, in regard to U.S. citizens “The requirement to detain a person in military custody under this section does not extend to citizens of the United States.” The key word here is “requirement.” In other words, the president still has the option to place Americans in indefinite military detention.
Some Americans may say that terrorism suspects should be stopped using any means necessary, and that if a few innocent people are imprisoned without trial by mistake, it’s unfortunate, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. However, there is now nothing to stop the current president of the United States, or the next one or the one after that, from taking advantage of the wording of the law and the fear of enemies to imprison whomever he chooses.

Ron Paul Confronts Bernanke: “Do You Buy Your Own Groceries?”

Ron Paul is simply the man! What more can really be said about the guy that wants to shake every tree in Washington and see what bad apples fall?

Steve Watson
Infowars.com
February 29, 2012

Tense stand off as Congressman notes Fed is destroying dollar purchasing power

GOP presidential candidate Ron paul took a break from campaigning today and diverted his attention back to his role on the House Financial Services Committee with the semiannual visit of Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke.

In a scathing opening statement, Paul went on the offensive against the Fed:

“What we are witnessing today is the end stages of a grand experiment,” Paul said, adding that the Fed’s control over the nation’s money supply has directly caused economic bubbles and all but destroyed the purchasing power of the dollar.

Noting that the Fed will soon end because it is facilitating too much debt, the Congressman added “I’m anxiously waiting for this day… Reform has to come.”

Turning his attention to Bernanke, Paul asked the Fed chairman whether he did his own grocery shopping. A somewhat bemused Bernanke replied in the affirmative, to which Paul hit back “OK. So you’re aware of the prices,” before commenting on government denial of real levels of inflation.

“This argument of prices going up two percent, nobody believes it.” Paul said. “The old CPI says prices are going up at nine percent.”

“People on fixed incomes, they are really hurting. The middle class is really hurting. Because their inflation rate is very much higher than the government tries to tell them, and that’s why they lose trust in government.”

“You say inflation is about 2%, I say 9%, let’s just call it 5%,” Paul told Bernanke. “That inflation is taking money away from the people….Someone is stealing wealth and this is very upsetting”

The Congressman then pulled out a silver eagle, explaining that it has retained it’s real worth and that hard assets should be used as currency as outlined in the Constitution.

Telling Bernanke that in 2006, when he took over at the Fed, an ounce of silver bought about 4 gallons of gas, where as today it will buy 11 gallons. “That’s preservation of value,” said Paul.

Paul called for a competing currency to the dollar, stating that the laws should be changed to allow precious metals to settle contract disputes and other legal obligations.

Bernanke addressed Paul by jokingly saying “good to see you again, Congressman”, before somewhat derisively saying he would be happy to consider the Congressman’s ideas and help him work out what currencies to hold.

Paul hit back by saying the government goes after those who attempt to use gold and silver as alternatives to depreciating Federal Reserve notes as if they are criminals, telling Bernanke “the record of what you’ve done is destroy the currency,”

Watch the video below:

http://youtu.be/nTgAhWMhcFs

Torture Architect Argues For Indefinite Detention of Americans

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
Wednesday, February 29, 2012

ACLU: “Nothing short of chilling”

In the aftermath of Barack Obama’s Presidential Policy Directive which forbids controversial provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act from being used against lawful residents, a former architect of the infamous Bush torture program today testified in favor of indefinite detention for US citizens.

Following the release of a White House “fact sheet” which announced that “Section 1022 does not apply to U.S. citizens, and the President has decided to waive its application to lawful permanent residents arrested in the United States,” Steven G. Bradbury, former head of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) in the United States Department of Justice under the Bush administration, testified today that the law should be applied to American citizens in order to deal with “homegrown terrorists”.

In his position as OLC head, Bradbury is widely acknowledged as one of the primary architects of the Bush torture program, having provided legal opinions that justified the kind of abuse that came to light in the aftermath of the Abu Ghraib scandal, which included torture by hanging, beating prisoners to death, raping women, and sodomizing detainees with batons and phosphorescent tubes.

Bradbury told a Senate Judiciary Committee that legislation which would limit the arbitrary application of indefinite detention provisions, the Due Process Guarantee Act, was dangerous because it would prevent US citizens labeled “enemy combatants,” from being interrogated by the military.

“If we capture on our soil a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident who is such an enemy recruit and has been actively involved in carrying out or otherwise aware of an unfolding plot by a foreign power against the United States, this proposed legislation could seriously impede our ability to gather critical intelligence from that combatant through military questioning,” Bradbury told the committee. “By requiring that criminal charges be brought against the detainee as a  condition of this continued detention, the [Due Process Guarantee Act] would threaten to disrupt the practical opportunity to conduct such intelligence gathering.”

In response, Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), who voted against the NDAA, requested that Bradbury’s involvement with the Bush torture scandal be included in the record.

“It’s nothing short of chilling that the Senate Judiciary Committee would have as a witness one of the architects of the torture program,” American Civil Liberties Union legislative counsel Chris Anders told Raw Story. “This is a person who wrote several memos that provide legal justification for the torture program during the Bush administration, and wrote memos on how to try to circumvent legal protections that Congress had put in place to block the use of torture and abuse of detainees.”

“For Congress to be relying on someone who has shown so little disregard for the law that he would say that it’s legally okay to waterboard people and use other torture tactics against them is remarkable. It’s remarkable and it’s wrong.”

However, Sen. Lindsey Graham supported Bradbury’s position, arguing that “The homeland is part of the battlefield,” and that so-called enemy combatants, even if they are American citizens, should be treated as terrorists.

As we explained in our previous article, although Obama’s PPD on exempting Americans from being subject to indefinite detention represents a worthy victory for civil libertarians, it comes after the administration itself demanded such provisions be applied to US citizens in the first place.

It also provides no guarantee that a future administration, which could be in office in less than a year, will not use the ‘kidnapping provisions’ against US citizens. This is all the more reason to support efforts by states such as Virginia and Utah to repudiate the NDAA altogether.

Source

Congress Gives States the Right to Drug Test the Unemployed

As one of the MANY unemployed in this country, I can say that in theory this may be a good idea but it’s really just another way for the government to screw us all. I don’t believe that people collecting unemployment should be using illegal drugs however, with that being said, it’s still their body and still their choice as to what they do with the money they receive.

The other problem I see here is that addiction is a DISEASE and needs to be treated as such. You can’t just cut off a junkies money supply and tell them to get a job; it simply doesn’t work that way. If the government decides to do this in order to save a few bucks, they are only buying themselves more time. Crime WILL GO UP as these people are now forced to steal in order to support their habits. Emergency room visits WILL GO UP as those trying to get off the drugs begin experiencing withdrawal symptoms and require medical care.

It’s a lose/lose situation for everybody. How about we drug test the people on capital hill?

David Wallechinsky, Noel Brinkerhoff
All Gov

February 23, 2012

While millions of Americans will continue to enjoy their modest payroll tax cut, many of them will now have to submit to drug testing as part of the deal struck between the two parties in Congress. As part of the compromise reached to extend the tax cut, Democrats agreed to a Republican provision giving states the right to require those seeking unemployment benefits who were fired for drug use to undergo testing administered by the state. What’s strange about this concession is that workers who are fired for drug use are not eligible for unemployment benefits anyway.

However, a second section of the bill is likely to impact hundreds of thousands of individuals. This section applies to workers applying for jobs in industries where drug testing is prevalent even if the workers have never been laid off because of drug use. Any state that chooses to apply this rule will shift the financial burden of drug testing from employers to state taxpayers. The Department of Labor has not yet announced which industries will qualify for the drug testing provision

Some opponents of the bill have proposed that members of state legislatures who approve drug testing applicants for unemployment benefits should themselves be tested for drugs since they too receive government benefits.

Source

Justice Dept. Ignored Law Requiring Annual Submission of Surveillance Reports to Congress

I keep saying it…. Big Brother is always watching you! The Justice Department has been given the permission to watch you, to monitor your emails and phone calls, your online social media activities, and what you purchase in stores but they were required to report their actions and finding to Congress; they didn’t report in so now what happens?

Noel Brinkerhoff
AllGov
Tuesday, February 14, 2012

For five years, the U.S. Department of Justice failed to inform Congress about the surveillance by federal law enforcement of certain types of email and telephone information, despite a lawful requirement to do so.
Using what’s known as pen register and trap-and-trace capturing, agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Marshals Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives increasingly snooped on Internet communications by the tens of thousands from 2004 to 2008.
During this period, the frequency of this wiretapping method nearly doubled, from 10,885 to 21,152, according to Wired’s Danger Room.
But the Justice Department did not report as required to lawmakers on this activity. The Senate Judiciary Committee, which is supposed to receive these reports, also was not pro-active in reminding the agency that it had failed to comply with federal law.
Types of information collected through pen registers and trap-and-trace capturing include phone numbers of calls made and received, as well as the senders and recipients (and sometimes the subject lines) of email messages.
With a collective straight face, the Justice Department has claimed that the failure to submit the annual surveillance reports to Congress was an oversight or a “mistake.” In 2004, the Justice Department turned in its reports for 1999-2003, and in December 2010 it posted its reports online for the years 2004-2009.