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Monday, Aug 31st

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White House proposal would ease FBI access to records of Internet activity

Lawyer Stewart Baker The Obama administration is seeking to make it easier for the FBI to compel companies to turn over records of an individual's Internet activity without a court order if agents deem the information relevant to a terrorism or intelligence investigation.

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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Federal judge blocks key parts of Ariz. immigration law

Federal judge blocks key parts of Ariz. immigration lawA federal judge on Wednesday blocked the most controversial parts of Arizona's immigration law from taking effect, delivering a last-minute victory to opponents of the crackdown.

The overall law will still take effect Thursday, but without the provisions that angered opponents — including sections that required officers to check a person's immigration status while enforcing other laws.

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Court Under Roberts Is Most Conservative in Decades

Court Under Roberts Is Most Conservative in DecadesWhen Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and his colleagues on the Supreme Court left for their summer break at the end of June, they marked a milestone: the Roberts court had just completed its fifth term.

In those five years, the court not only moved to the right but also became the most conservative one in living memory, based on an analysis of four sets of political science data.

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BP Hides Use of Black Prison Labor For Oil Gusher Cleanup

BP Hides Use of Black Prison Labor For Oil Gusher CleanupWhen the BP oil gusher mess first began, BP hired prison labor in order to reap tax benefits instead of hiring coastal residents whose livelihoods crashed with the explosion of the wellhead. When the community expressed their outrage, BP did not stop the practice of using prison labor.

No, apparently BP simply tried to literally cover-up the use of prison labor by changing the clothing worn by the inmates to give the appearance of a civilian workforce. Big surprise.

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Top Secret America: A hidden world growing beyond control

Top secret AmericaThe top-secret world the government created in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs, how many programs exist within it or exactly how many agencies do the same work.

These are some of the findings of a two-year investigation by The Washington Post that discovered what amounts to an alternative geography of the United States, a Top Secret America hidden from public view and lacking in thorough oversight.

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Man with neo-Nazi ties leading patrols in AZ

NSMMinutemen groups, a surge in Border Patrol agents, and a tough new immigration law aren't enough for a reputed neo-Nazi who's now leading a militia in the Arizona desert.

Jason "J.T." Ready is taking matters into his own hands, declaring war on "narco-terrorists" and keeping an eye out for illegal immigrants. So far, he says his patrols have only found a few border crossers who were given water and handed over to the Border Patrol. Once, they also found a decaying body in a wash, and alerted authorities.

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U.S. paid Iranian nuclear scientist $5 million for aid to CIA

CIA paid Iranian scientist 5 million dollarsThe Iranian nuclear scientist who claimed to have been abducted by the CIA before departing for his homeland Wednesday was paid more than $5 million by the agency to provide intelligence on Iran's nuclear program, U.S. officials said.

Shahram Amiri is not obligated to return the money but might be unable to access it after breaking off what U.S. officials described as significant cooperation with the CIA and abruptly returning to Iran. Officials said he might have left out of concern that the Tehran government would harm his family.

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