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Human Rights & Civil Liberties

Human Rights & Civil Liberties

Rachel Maddow: Exposing Private Prison Industry Role in Shaping Arizona's Anti-Immigration Law

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  • Arizona Private Prisons Set to Gain From Arizona Immigration Bill
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  • Five are run privately, and the Governor has ties
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  • to the private sector.
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  • Incarceration
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Heather,  Video Cafe

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Thomas Sklarski

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Rachel Maddow followed up with KPHO's Morgan Loew on Arizona's private prison industry and on the sponsor of SB1070, Arizona Sen. Russell Pearce, who's lobbying ties run even deeper than those of their Governor Jan Brewer. An article by In These Times summed up why as Rachel noted these Arizona pols are pushing the anti-immigrant hysteria even though it is not a very smart political strategy in the long term for the Republican Party. It's a Corporate Con Game:

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Yet the fact is, some backers of S.B. 1070 are wrapping themselves in the flag all the way to the bank.

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An In These Times investigation shows that the bill’s promoters are as equally dedicated to border politics as they are to promoting the fortunes of private prison companies, like Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and Geo Group, which stand to reap substantial profits as more undocumented residents end up in jail.

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As Loew reported back in May, here are Pearce's plans for legislation he wants to try to push through next year.

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More...

Big Brother: Obama Demands Access to Internet Records, in Secret, and Without Court Review

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  • Internet users do not give up their privacy rights when they log on, and the FBI should not have the power to secretly demand that ISPs turn over constitutionally protected information about their users without a court order.
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  • ACLU Report: Obama Continuing Bush-Era Torture Policies
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Tom Burghardt, Global Research

The Obama administration is seeking authority from Congress that would compel internet service providers (ISPs) to turn over records of an individual's internet activity for use in secretive FBI probes.

In another instance where Americans are urged to trust their political minders, the Washington Post reported last month that "the administration wants to add just four words--'electronic communication transactional records'--to a list of items that the law says the FBI may demand without a judge's approval."

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Under cover of coughing-up information deemed relevant to espionage or terrorism investigations, proposed changes to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) would greatly expand the volume of private records that can be seized through National Security Letters (NSLs).

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Related:

ACLU Report: Obama Continuing Bush-Era Torture Policies, Deborah Weinstein,  TruthOut.org, in AlterNet

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  • Fear of an unchecked, unaccountable government permeates the report, particularly in the section about targeted killings.
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  • On torture, U.S. must clean house
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Summary: Immigration Reform: Week of August 15

4 New Items including:

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  • Change? Obama's "Crimmigration" Policies Mimic Bush's
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  • Activists Pan Dems' Approach; Say Another Immigration Policy Is Possible
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David Culver, ed., Evergreene Digest

Ben Sargent

Change? Obama's "Crimmigration" Policies Mimic Bush's, Walter Ewing, Immigration Impact

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  • The Obama administration has chosen to follow its predecessor in pursuing the criminal prosecution of unauthorized immigrants for minor, nonviolent offenses.
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  • DHS under the Obama administration is needlessly clogging the federal courts with people who have not committed any serious crime.
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Arizona's D-Day, The Progress Report

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  • The Reform Immigration for American campaign reports that "there are twenty two copycats [laws] waiting to see which way the wind blows on states' ability to preempt federal immigration law."
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  • Arizona to appeal judge's immigration law ruling that put most of measure on hold
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Activists Pan Dems' Approach; Say Another Immigration Policy Is Possible, David Bacon, TruthOut.org

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  • Grassroots groups don't like the Democrats' proposals for comprehensive immigration reform.
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  • Feds Suing AZ Over Immigration Law
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Feds Suing AZ Over Immigration Law, The Washington Post
Justice Department to argue SB1070 steps on federal law.

ACLU Report: Obama Continuing Bush-Era Torture Policies

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  • Fear of an unchecked, unaccountable government permeates the report, particularly in the section about targeted killings.
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  • On torture, U.S. must clean house
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Deborah Weinstein,  TruthOut.org, in AlterNet

For disillusioned Obama supporters, the ACLU's July report "Establishing the New Normal" is not a heartening read.

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After being voted into office on promises that included undoing abuses carried out under the Bush administration - promises to protect privacy, to end government-sanctioned torture and rendition programs and to end the use of military commissions for non-enemy combatants - President Obama's administration is proving it is far easier to toe the line than buck a trend.
According to a report by the ACLU, the current White House has not just failed to meaningfully follow through on its promises, but has also taken abusive policies, and, as shown in the case of targeted and interminable detentions, eroded civil rights to unprecedented levels.

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More...

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Related:

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Nick Coleman: On torture, U.S. must clean house, Nick Coleman, Star Tribune | MN

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  • Nation won't regain moral leadership without fully renouncing the practice.
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  • Obama's No Human Rights Crusader -- Just Look at How He Aids Israel's Atrocities
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  • Crimes Are Crimes – No Matter Who Does Them
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