Notes on Civil Liberties

By: Friday August 19, 2011 4:45 am

Here’s the list or the latest civil liberties stories. Protests and civil disobedience against the Obama administration’s “Secure Communities” program have taken place all over the country, while protests and violence continue in the UK. Plus updates in wikileaks and much more.


Putting “Really Mushy” Functions in a Department that Refuses to Be Audited

By: Saturday April 2, 2011 7:00 pm

HBGary’s past governmental work has been about cybersecurity–assessing malware and finding intrusions. But they’ve been proposing collecting information about citizens’ First Amendment activity to use to target those citizens. And the Air Force–that entity with a cybersecurity budget bigger than all of DOD’s cybersecurity budget–is the service that was engaging cybersecurity firms to develop persona management software.

But aside from that, why should we be worried that such dangerous entities are organizationally such a clusterfuck?

The Party Line – February 25, 2011

By: Friday February 25, 2011 9:30 am

In which I ask the question: If Stephen Colbert won’t show you Mike Huckabee squirming, can we really hope that anyone in the “serious” media will?

Michael Whitney Discusses HBGary & Chamber of Commerce on GritTV

By: Sunday February 20, 2011 4:00 pm

I went to GritTV’s New York City studios to discuss the HBGary and AnonLeaks developments with respect to the role of the US Chamber of Commerce in spying on American citizens for political activities. Lee Fang, the reporter from ThinkProgress who, along with Marcy Wheeler, first reported on HBGary’s work with the Chamber joined us for the discussion.

Themis Applies Counterterror Techniques to Fight First Amendment Activity

By: Thursday February 17, 2011 7:55 am

I have a feeling I’ll be doing a lot of these posts, showing how Hunton & Williams asked “Themis” (the three firm team of HBGary, Palantir, and Berico Technologies) to apply counterterrorism approaches to combat First Amendment activities.

This particular installment comes from an early presentation and accompanying proposal Themis prepared for Hunton & Williams. These documents were attached to an email dated November 2, 2010 sent out by Berico Technologies’ Deputy Director. He explains that the presentation and proposal would be briefed to H&W the following day.

Chet Uber Contacted HBGary Before Publicizing Role in Exposing Bradley Manning

By: Wednesday February 16, 2011 8:30 am

Reader DL found a very interesting email among the HBGary emails: Chet Uber emailed — after having tried to call — HBGary CEO Gary Hoglund on June 23, 2010.

Traditional Media Takes Notice of ChamberLeaks Scandal

By: Tuesday February 15, 2011 9:31 am

The traditional media has finally taken note of the campaign by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to enlist private security firms in a plan to smear their political enemies using dirty tricks

The HBGary Scandal: Using Counterterrorism Tactics on Citizen Activism

By: Monday February 14, 2011 3:00 pm

As I described on the Mike Malloy show on Friday and as Brad Friedman discusses in his post on being targeted by the Chamber of Commerce, the essence of the Chamber of Commerce/Bank of America/HBGary scandal is the use of intelligence techniques developed for use on terrorists deployed for use on citizens exercising their First Amendment rights.

ThinkProgress has a post making it clear that the Chamber of Commerce’s nondenial denials don’t hold up. In this post, I’ll begin to show the close ties between the tactics HBGary’s Aaron Barr proposed to use against Wikileaks and anti-Chamber activists and those already used in counterterrorism.

From the ChamberPot: Number Two

By: Saturday February 12, 2011 10:15 am

The Chamber of Commerce has tried to craft another non-denial denial that they engaged a bunch of private spooks to spy on people like Brad Friedman.

HBGary Fees: “Dam It Feels Good to Be a Gangsta”

By: Friday February 11, 2011 1:05 pm

One of the more interesting documents on HBGary et al’s partnership with the Chamber of Commerce details the prices they wanted to charge. Now, other emails make it clear that the Chamber balked at what the team originally proposed would be $2 million of work–the Chamber didn’t pay these rates (indeed, they probably haven’t paid for any of this).

But I was particularly interested in what HBGary’s Aaron Barr proposed charging for the work of what they called a “Social Media SME.”

Follow Firedoglake
CSM Ads advertisement