Law by Secrecy is Absurd

“Stop citizen—! You have broken the law.”

“Which Law?”

“YOU have no right to question the Law.”

“I am just asking what law I have broken.”

“Stop resisting arrest lawbreaker.”

“I have a right to know what law you are arresting me for officer.”

“You are now in violation of the Failure to Comply.”

“I haven’t done anything wrong.”

“You are resisting arrest.”

“I demand my Rights.”

“Failure to obey my Commands is against the law.”

“I demand Due Process!”

“Obey me now or die.”

“Civil Liberty is Dead.”

…. citizen is now found guilty and executed.

Now some readers might think that sure is over the top… right. Sure it is a mere exaggeration of a confrontation between an officer of the law and a citizen, who has been accused of breaking a law. When the law de-evolves into National Security, under a long intertwining list of Acts, laws, rules, procedures, agencies, sub-agencies etc. the citizen is confronted with a swirling maze of legal contortions—- most notably the Patriot Act–where secrecy becomes the tool of authority and the law.

Just some recent examples, of where the twisting road leads:

—–“Secret Court Document Finds Spy Techniques Unconstitutional, Justice Department Fights To Keep It Hidden By Ryan W. Neal | May 30 2013

—–“The Justice Department may soon be forced to reveal a classified document that details unconstitutional surveillance of American citizens. The Justice Department has fought to keep the document secret for about a year, but a recent court order demands that they respond to a formal request filed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation by next week, June 7, 2013.

The FISC mostly operates in secret, so the actual court decision remained classified. Wyden was only able to say the FISC decision existed; he was unable to disclose any details about the actual surveillance techniques that were deemed unconstitutional or how many Americans they affected.

The EFF took legal action to learn more about the FISC decision. An initial victory in a district court established in the public record that the Justice Department does possess an 86-page FISC decision on unconstitutional surveillance methods that was published Oct. 3, 2011. The decision found that some techniques were “unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment,” and that the court concluded that “on at least one occasion,” the Justice Department “circumvented the spirit of the law.http://www.ibtimes.com/secret-court-document-finds-spy-techniques-unconstitutional-justice-department-fights-keep-it-hidden

Law by secrecy is absurd due to the salient fact any Law must be known to be observed, or conversely, willfully broken. If the law against running a stop sign followed the same absurd rules— motorists will be charged for knowing the stop sign does not exist!  Or more absurd yet, since I did not see any stop sign I knew this meant to stop, thereby, negating the very reason for the stop sign. One cannot observe or up-hold secret laws by negation of knowing they exist. Charging people with violating a law that is a State or Federal secret is a STAR Chamber Act— and is quite forbidden by the Constitution. Therefore, writing such laws is also quite forbidden.

To get around the fact secret laws are strictly forbidden by the Bill of Rights as well, the law breakers writing unconstitutional Acts, must weave such violations around National Security, which is also wound around the dubious assertions of the Presidents authority in a time of war. Thus, necessitating war must become the ONLY State this country operates in continuously, which is also quite absurd; as it violates the constitutional restrictions on abuse of power to secure those ends otherwise not possible. Or why have enumerated powers? And for those authoritarians that still do not get the rules— “implied powers” only exist due to there being Enumerated powers at all— so contingency becomes the un-written law that is operated upon.

To state that laws must operate in secrecy—by contingency— to protect the secrecy itself from being known— is also absurd. If the proposed law breaker is going to cease breaking the law, once the law is known, only by keeping the law secret— a secret unto itself– can the law be broken unknowingly by proving the absurdity to be true—the law breaker was guilty of knowing the secret to stop breaking the law— was in fact the secret—of knowing to up-hold the law. 

In short, merely knowing that there is a law is now a violation of breaking the law while quite innocent which is absurd. Spying on people in secret violates the constitution, so the government writes a law that makes merely knowing such spying is occurring is now against the law. The absurdity of this circular reasoning is that the government itself is breaking the Law— so it re-writes the law to allow itself the power of breaking the law—and adds, the additional absurdity, that it cannot be caught or charged with breaking the law, because National Secrecy has already determined the authority to break the law supersedes the Rights of citizens the defense of the Law. Ergo the citizen has no Right of the law as a defense, so long as the contingency, of which law so deemed is a secret, remains a secret, to determine guilt. All citizens are pre-guilty by this arrangement therefore, NSLs are constitutional. What the citizens are actually guilty of— is the secret. A secret protected by National Security Directives.

—–“DOJ Asks Court To Keep Secret Any Partnership Between Google, NSA, has a disturbing appearance.

—–The Justice Department is defending the government’s refusal to discuss—or even acknowledge the existence of—any cooperative research and development agreement between Google and the National Security Agency.

—–The Washington based advocacy group Electronic Privacy Information Center sued in federal district court here to obtain documents about any such agreement between the Internet search giant and the security agency.

—–The NSA responded to the suit with a so-called “Glomar” response in which the agency said it could neither confirm nor deny whether any responsive records exist. U.S. District Judge Richard Leon in Washington sided with the government last July.” http://legaltimes.typepad.com/blt/2012/03/doj-asks-court-to-keep-secret-any-partnership-between-google-nsa.html

—–If you are still a skeptic, watch the video, Google is an NSA tool DE-CLASSIFIED DOCUMENT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQx7gyoe7A8&feature=player_embedded

—–The lingering questions about the nature of the Google – NSA relationship, jeopardize business confidence in the use of their services and ad programs. The persistent claims that Google data integration is coordinated with the NSA and that the *Utah Data Center has linkage with the Google server network, gains traction when the government refuses public disclosure of the full historical relationship.http://ww.blacklistednews.com  /Google_and_the_NSA_Connection/ 26300/0/38/38/Y/M.html

Meanwhile, Google was challenging NSLs:

—–“The people who are in the best position to challenge the practice are people like Google,” said EFF attorney Matt Zimmerman, who represented an unidentified service provider that won the March 14 ruling. “So far no one has really stood up for their users” among large Internet service providers.

The government has issued 300,000 NSLs since 2000, and only four or five recipients have challenged the letters, Zimmerman said. Civil-rights groups say NSLs give federal agents unchecked powers to spy on people while the government says they’re a crucial tool in the fight against terrorism and threats to national security.

Section 2709 is a federal law authorizing the Federal Bureau of Investigation to issue NSLs requiring wire and electronic communication service providers to turn over subscriber information and other records that the agency certifies are relevant to an investigation of international terrorism or clandestine intelligence activities. The law prohibits NSL recipients from disclosing they’ve received one.  

U.S. District Judge Susan Illston yesterday granted Google’s request to seal documents in the case. Illston ruled March 14 that the gag order section of the NSL law was unconstitutional and rendered the entire statute illegal.

Illston said the NSL statutes violated free speech and separation of power principles because the government failed to show that, to protect national security, it needs to always bar people from disclosing the mere fact they’ve received an NSL and the law impermissibly restricted courts from reviewing the need for nondisclosure.

She ordered the FBI to stop issuing NSLs and put her ruling on hold for 90 days to allow the government time to appeal. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-04/google-fights-u-s-national-security-probe-data-demand.html

—–“Google, in its first public disclosure about national security letters, said in a March 5 report that it received in the range of zero to 999 NSLs annually starting in 2009 affecting more than 1,000 accounts. In a company blog post, Richard Salgado, Google’s legal director for law enforcement and information security, thanked U.S. government officials “for working with us to provide greater insight into the use of NSLs.”

And today that same Judge reversed herself:

Judge: Google must give user info to FBI        June 1st 2013

—–“In the latest case, Illston sided with the FBI after Google contested the constitutionality and necessity of the letters but again put her ruling on hold until the 9th Circuit rules. After receiving sworn statements from two top-ranking FBI officials, Illston said she was satisfied that 17 of the 19 letters were issued properly. She wanted more information on two other letters.

It was unclear from the judge’s ruling what type of information the government sought to obtain with the letters. It was also unclear who the government was targeting.

Kurt Opsah, an attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said he was “disappointed that the same judge who declared these letters unconstitutional is now requiring compliance with them.” http://m.capitalgazette.com/wire/nation/judge-orders-google-to-give-customer-data-to-fbi/article_d3d8daef-8840-583c-a891-86f17766a9c6.html

In a previous Blog posting, I voiced my concerns with advanced AI systems being quietly operated under the cover of national secrecy, in connection to Total Information Awareness—which has become:-

—–“The Utah Data Center, also known as the Intelligence Community Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative Data Center,[1] is a data storage facility for the United States Intelligence Community that is designed to be a primary storage resource capable of storing data on the scale of yottabytes (1 yottabyte = 1 trillion terabytes, or 1 quadrillion gigabytes).[2][3]

—–Its purpose — as the name implies — is to support the Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative (CNCI), though its precise mission is secret.[4] The National Security Agency, which will lead operations at the facility, is the executive agent for the Director of National Intelligence.[5] It is located at Camp Williams, near Bluffdale, Utah, between Utah Lake and Great Salt Lake.

—–The data center is alleged to be able to capture “all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls, and Internet searches, as well as all sorts of personal data trails—parking receipts, travel itineraries, bookstore purchases, and other digital ‘pocket litter’.”[2] According to the FISA Amendments Act of 2008, the federal government is legally prohibited from collecting, storing, analyzing, or disseminating the content of the communications of US persons, whether inside or outside of the United States, unless authorized by an individual warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.[6]

—–During the Obama Administration, the NSA has officially continued operating under the new FISA guidelines.[18] However, in April 2009 officials at the United States Department of Justice acknowledged that the NSA had engaged in “over-collection” of domestic communications in excess of the FISA court’s authority, but claimed that the acts were unintentional and had since been rectified.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utah_Data_Center

Now the Patriot Act was of course stated to be the result of the 911 attacks.

Cheney Admits that He Lied about 9/11
Posted on March 8, 2013 by WashingtonsBlog

The New York Times’ Maureen Dowd writes today:

“In a documentary soon to appear on Showtime, “The World According to Dick Cheney,” [Cheney said] “I got on the telephone with the president, who was in Florida, and told him not to be at one location where we could both be taken out.” Mr. Cheney kept W. flying aimlessly in the air on 9/11 while he and Lynn left on a helicopter for a secure undisclosed location, leaving Washington in a bleak, scared silence, with no one reassuring the nation in those first terrifying hours.

“I gave the instructions that we’d authorize our pilots to take it out,” he says, referring to the jet headed to Washington that crashed in a Pennsylvania field. He adds: “After I’d given the order, it was pretty quiet. Everybody had heard it, and it was obviously a significant moment.”

***

When they testified together before the 9/11 Commission, W. and Mr. Cheney kept up a pretense that in a previous call, the president had authorized the vice president to give a shoot-down order if needed. But the commission found “no documentary evidence for this call.”

In other words, Cheney pretended that Bush had authorized a shoot-down order, but Cheney now admits that he never did. In fact, Cheney acted as if he was the president on 9/11.  Indeed, Cheney initiated Continuity of Government plans on 9/11 which essentially nullified America’s constitutional form of government.” http://www.washingtonsblog.com  /2013/03/cheney-admits-that-he-lied-about-911.html

—–“The Patriot Act was planned before 9/11 (and see this). Indeed, former Counter Terrorism Czar Richard Clarke told Stanford law professor Lawrence Lessig:

After 9/11 the government drew up the Patriot Act within 20 days and it was passed.

—–“The Patriot Act is huge and I remember someone asking a Justice Department official how did they write such a large statute so quickly, and of course the answer was that it has been sitting in the drawers of the Justice Department for the last 20 years waiting for the event where they would pull it out.” http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/08/u-s-government-planned-indefinite-detention-of-citizens-long-before-911.html

Mr. Joe Biden’s interesting role in the pre-Patriot Act:

—–“Anti-terror” legislation —The next year, months before the Oklahoma City bombing took place, Biden introduced another bill called the Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995. It previewed the 2001 Patriot Act by allowing secret evidence to be used in prosecutions, expanding the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and wiretap laws, creating a new federal crime of “terrorism” that could be invoked based on political beliefs, permitting the U.S. military to be used in civilian law enforcement, and allowing permanent detection of non-U.S. citizens without judicial review. The Center for National Security Studies said the bill would erode “constitutional and statutory due process protections” and would “authorize the Justice Department to pick and choose crimes to investigate and prosecute based on political beliefs and associations.”

[Add in the IRS as well in that regard]

—–“That month, Biden slammed the “president’s illegal wiretapping program that allows intelligence agencies to eavesdrop on the conversations of Americans without a judge’s approval or congressional authorization or oversight.” He took aim at Attorney General Alberto Gonzales for allowing the FBI to “flagrantly misuse National Security Letters” — even though it was the Patriot Act that greatly expanded their use without also expanding internal safeguards and oversight as well.

—–“Biden did vote against a FISA bill with retroactive immunity for any telecommunications provider that illegally opened its network to the National Security Agency; Obama didn’t. Both agreed to renew the Patriot Act in March 2006, a move that pro-privacy Democrats including Ron Wyden and Russ Feingold opposed. The ACLU said the renewal “fails to correct the most flawed provisions” of the original Patriot Act. (Biden does do well on the ACLU’s congressional scorecard.)http://news.cnet.com  /8301-13578_3-10024163-38.html?tag=newsLeadStoriesArea.0

And Mr. Clinton had a hand in this pre-version as well:

—–“The Center for National Securities reported in 1995:

On February 10, 1995, a counter-terrorism bill drafted by the Clinton Administration was introduced in the Senate as S. 390 and in the House of Representatives as H.R. 896.

The Clinton bill is a mixture of: provisions eroding constitutional and statutory due process protections, selective federalization — on political grounds — of state crimes (minus state due process rules), discredited ideas from the Reagan and Bush Administrations, and the extension of some of the worst elements of crime bills of the recent past.”

Congress Had No Time to Read the USA PATRIOT Act
by Paul Blumenthal March 2, 2009, 2:03 p.m.

—–“It is hard to determine how long the final version of the USA PATRIOT Act was available prior to its consideration. By all measures, it was not available to the public and was barely made available to members of Congress. As one of the primary examples of bills that were rushed through Congress, there was little chance that the PATRIOT Act wouldn’t be a major Read the Bill case study.

—–The bill was brought to the floor of the House of Representatives on October 23, the same day it was introduced. Many Democrats expressed extreme displeasure over the hurried nature of the process. Rep. Bobby Scott said, “I think it is appropriate to comment on the process by which the bill is coming to us. This is not the bill that was reported and deliberated on in the Committee on the Judiciary. It came to us late on the floor. No one has really had an opportunity to look at the bill to see what is in it since we have been out of our offices.”

—–Rep. John Conyers, the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee, declared, “we are now debating at this hour of night, with only two copies of the bill that we are being asked to vote on available to Members on this side of the aisle.” Conyers was later famously pictured in the Michael Moore documentary “Fahrenheit 9/11” explaining that no lawmaker reads all the bills in Congress. The bill passed on October 24 by a vote of 357-66.

—–The Senate passed the bill the very next day and the president signed the bill on October 26, 2001.”

SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the ”Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT ACT) Act of 2001’’.

Public Law 107–56 107th Congress
An Act

“To deter and punish terrorist acts in the United States and around the world,to enhance law enforcement investigatory tools, and for other purposes.”

‘‘(c)—–CLASSIFIED INFORMATION.

In any judicial review of a determination made under this section, if the determination was based on classified information (*as defined in section 1(a) of the Classified Information Procedures Act) such information may be submitted to the reviewing court ex parte and in camera. This subsection does not confer or imply any right to judicial review.’’.

*—Sec. 1. Definitions

(a) ”Classified information”, as used in this Act, means any information or material that has been determined by the United States Government pursuant to an Executive order, statute, or regulation, to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national security and any restricted data, as defined in *paragraph r. of section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2014(y)). http://www.intelligence.senate.gov/classifiedinformationprocedures.htm

[*The act names executive orders before legal statutes, because these orders—more than acts of Congress, decisions of the Supreme Court, or other rulings—are among the principal governing authorities in matters of security classification and access to classified information. In addition to executive orders, there are also other non-parliamentary government directives that present guidelines on classified information and access.] Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/classified-information#ixzz2V1PJajbg

—–“*Classified information is defined in PL 96-456, the Classified Information Procedures Act:

—–Any information or material that has been determined by the United States Government, pursuant to an executive order, statute, or regulation, to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national security and any restricted data, as defined in paragraph r or section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954. [42 USC 2014(y)]

—–This definition is identical with one proposed in the draft National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual (NISPOM), except that the latter does not include the words “or regulation.” By adding those two words, one could argue that PL 96-456 gives us a statutory, as well as an executive, basis for the classification of U.S. information. We could thus resolve the longstanding debate as to whether the classification system has a basis in law.

—–Prior to 1953 the U.S. employed a Restricted classification that applied to information withheld from public dissemination. It was canceled with the issuance of Executive Order 10501 on November 5, 1953.

—–Despite the cancellation, many people inside and outside Government expressed concern about the tremendous effort being made by the Soviet Bloc to collect U.S. industrial and military information. This concern led to the establishment of the Office of Strategic Information (OSI) in the Department of Commerce to provide a central Government office to work with the business community in voluntary efforts to prevent the loss to foreign interests of unclassified strategic data. It was aimed primarily at protecting defense information of the United States. The OSI did not stay in operation very long–it was disestablished in 1957. Note the word “voluntary” in its mission. This was not a sufficient statutory base to limit dissemination of some technical information.

—–A few years later, in 1960, the House Committee on Government Operations issued a report citing 842 Federal statutes controlling Government information. The study leading to publication of the report is still pertinent because it led to this finding:

The subcommittee uncovered case after case of executive officials withholding information without any legal authority.”

… In other cases, however, executive officials have gone beyond the law to claim ‘executive privilege‘ for secrecy when there is no legal privilege.

So, what’s new?

My greatest gripe is that the Government does not comply with its own rules. There is no information security program that works. Government personnel are the principal violators of security regulations, and have done the most damage to the national security. Government personnel have committed most of the crimes. Government operates a two-track regulatory system:

“Do as I Say, Not What I Do”–http://www.fas.org/sgp/eprint/bagley.html

Oddly enough this specific section is not about security, so there is a missing piece of information not specified:

r. The term “operator” means any individual who manipulates the controls of a utilization or production facility.

This notation further adds to the confusion:

Added by P.L. 85–256, § 3, 71 Stat. 576 (1957). P.L. 87–615, § 5, 76 Stat. 409 (1962), amended the subsection. Before amendment, it read as follows: r. The term “person indemnified” means the person with whom an indemnity agreement is executed and any other person who may be liable for public liability—

—(y) The term ‘‘Restricted Data’’ means all data concerning (1) design, manufacture, or utilization of atomic weapons; (2) the production of special nuclear material; or (3) the use of special nuclear material in the production of energy, but shall not include data declassified or removed from the Restricted Data category pursuant to section 2162 of this title.

—Sec. 142. Classification and Declassification of Restricted Data a. The Commission shall from time to time determine the data, within the definition of Restricted Data, which can be published without undue risk to the common defense and security and shall thereupon cause such data to be declassified and removed from the category of Restricted Data.

b. The Commission shall maintain a continuous review of Restricted Data and of any Classification guides issued for the guidance of those in the atomic energy program with respect to the areas of Restricted Data which have been declassified in order to determine which information may be declassified and removed from the category of Restricted Data without undue risk to the common defense and security.

c. In the case of Restricted Data which the Commission and the Department of Defense jointly determine to relate primarily to the military utilization of atomic weapons, the determination that such data may be published without constituting an unreasonable risk to the common defense and security shall be made by the Commission and the Department of Defense jointly, and if the Commission and the Department of Defense do not agree, the determination shall be made by the President.

d. The Commission shall remove from the Restricted Data category such data as the Commission and the Department of Defense jointly determine relates primarily to the military utilization of atomic weapons and which the Commission and Department of Defense jointly determine can be adequately safeguarded as defense information: Provided, however, That no such data so removed from the Restricted Data category shall be transmitted or otherwise made available to any nation or regional defense organization, while such data remains defense information, except pursuant to an agreement for cooperation entered into in accordance with subsection b. or d. of section 144.170

e. The Commission shall remove from the Restricted Data category such information concerning the atomic energy programs of other nations as the Commission and the Director of Central Intelligence jointly determine to be necessary to carry out the provisions of section 102(d) of the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, and can be adequately safeguarded as defense information.

Restricted Data relates to all things atomic which is fine for the purpose it is established for but not a general purpose excuse for secrecy so claimed.

—-(h) The term ‘‘defense information’’ means any information in any category determined by any Government agency authorized to classify
information, as being information respecting, relating to, or affecting the national defense.

—The Atomic Energy Act of 1954, 42 U.S.C. § 2011 et seq., is a United States federal law that is, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, “the fundamental U.S. law on both the civilian and the military uses of nuclear materials.” [1] It covers the laws for the development, regulation, and disposal of nuclear materials and facilities in the United States.

It was an amendment to the Atomic Energy Act of 1946 and substantially refined certain aspects of the law, including increased support for the possibility of a civilian nuclear industry. Notably it made it possible for the government to allow private companies to gain technical information (Restricted Data) about nuclear energy production and the production of fissile materials, allowing for greater exchange of information with foreign nations as part of Eisenhower’s Atoms for Peace program, and reversed certain provisions in the 1946 law which had made it impossible to patent processes for generating nuclear energy or fissile materials.

A very interesting side-note—-“In 1978 the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a lower court ruling that the Price-Anderson Act was unconstitutional. There were two grounds on which the act was challenged in Duke Power v. Carolina Environmental Study Group, Inc.[26] One was that the act violated the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in that it failed to ensure adequate compensation for victims of an accident. The other was that it violated the Fourteenth Amendment by treating nuclear accidents differently from other accidents.[27] In a seeming confirmation of Charles Black’s thesis that rather than acting as a check on the other branches of government, the Supreme Court tends to legitimize increases in government power,[28] the Court ruled that the act did not violate the equal protection provision of the Constitution in that the importance of nuclear power must be balanced against the burden of those potentially harmed.” http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa036.html

—-{Classified information is sensitive information that might result in the loss of an advantage or level of security if disclosed to others who might have low or unknown trustability, or undesirable intentions. Usually, access to classified information is restricted by law or regulations applicable to particular classes of persons. Pursuant to 75 FR 51609, 51612(c), “classified national security information” or “classified information” means information that has been determined pursuant to Executive Order 13526, or any predecessor or successor order, to require protection against unauthorized disclosure, and is marked to indicate its classified status when in documentary form.

Further, pursuant to 18 USCS Appx § 1 (a) “classified information”, as used in Classified Information Procedures Act means “any information or material that has been determined by the U.S. government pursuant to an Executive order, statute, or regulation, to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national security and any restricted data, as defined in paragraph (r.) of section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954”.

In the, U.S., Executive Order 13526 dictates a uniform system for classifying, safeguarding, and declassifying national security information, including information relating to defense against transnational terrorism. Although the democratic principles of the U.S. require that the American people be informed of the activities of their government, the national defense has required that certain information must be maintained in confidence in order to protect U.S. citizens, U.S. democratic institutions, U.S. homeland security, and U.S. interactions with foreign nations. Accordingly, protecting information that is critical to a nation’s security and demonstrating a nation’s commitment to open government through accurate and accountable application of classification standards and routine, secure, and effective declassification are equally of important priorities[i].

In addition, the Classified National Security Information Program (Program) was also designed to safeguard and govern access to classified national security information shared by the federal government with state, local, tribal, and private sector (SLTPS) entities. [i] 75 FR 707.}  http://nationalsecuritylaw.uslegal.com/classified-information-in-the-u-s/

{Laws on classification procedures: An introduction. Federal laws on classification procedures provide for governing authorities who determine what information should be subjected to rules of restricted access. Specifically, Executive Order 12958, discussed below, defines the “original classification authority” as “an individual authorized in writing, either by the President, or by agency heads or other officials designated by the President, to classify information in the first instance.” This governing authority also determines the level of classification, of which are three major ones: confidential, secret, and top secret. (The levels of security clearance are discussed in more detail elsewhere, within the context of security clearance investigations.)

A number of laws govern classified information, but most are not “laws” in the sense that they were duly reviewed by Congress or the Supreme Court; rather, the majority of guidelines in these matters come from executive orders or presidential directives (which are classified), as well as directives from the National Security Council, the director of Central Intelligence, the Department of Defense, and so on. A rare exception to this is CIPA, the Classified Information Act, which came into being through the ordinary channels of legislative procedure most commonly associated with a republican democracy. Even so, it has often been used to protect the “shadow government” of the security and espionage apparatus.

Classified Information Act (CIPA). Passed by Congress on October 15, 1980, CIPA was codified as 94 Stat. 2025, 18–

U.S.C. Appendix, and further amended November 18, 1988, in 102 Stat. 4396. Known in legal circles as a procedural statute, CIPA presents guidelines for the use of classified information by both government and defendant in a legal case. As a procedural statute, it neither adds to nor subtracts from the rights of the defendant or the obligations of the government; rather, it is designed to prevent both sides from unauthorized disclosure of classified information, and to apprise the federal government of any security breach that may result from proceeding with a case.

During the Iran-Contra conspiracy trials in 1988, attorneys representing defendants Oliver North, John Poindexter, Richard Secord, and Albert Hakim filed a petition with U.S. District Judge Gerhard A. Gesell, stating that CIPA “imposes burdens on the defense unprecedented in American law.” Because so much of their case rested on classified information, the defense argued, it would be legal suicide to disclose all of that information to the prosecution.–Executive Order 12958. The most significant presidential provisions regarding classified information are the executive orders 12958 and 12968, both issued by President William J. Clinton. The second of these is discussed elsewhere, in the context of security clearances.}—Read more: http://www.faqs.org/espionage/Ch-Co/Classified-Information.html#ixzz2UzeRmBHO

All of these Acts, revolve around earlier legislation intended to preserve National Secrecy during times of war:

—–“The Espionage Act of 1917 was passed, along with the Trading with the Enemy Act, just after the United States entered World War I in April 1917. It was based on the Defense Secrets Act of 1911, especially the notions of obtaining or delivering information relating to “national defense” to a person who was not “entitled to have it”, itself based on an earlier British Official Secrets Act. The Espionage Act law imposed much stiffer penalties than the 1911 law, including the death penalty.[4]”

Knowing how the law will be adjudicated also helps to understand what is defined as against the law:

The Judge Advocate’s Handbook For Litigating National Security Cases

B. What is classified information?

While the definitions of “classified information” vary slightly, they all boil down to information that an authorized official of the Executive branch has determined pertains to a limited number of subject matters, is within the custody or control of the United States Government, and, in that official’s professional judgment, reasonably can be expected to cause damage to the national security or foreign relations of the United States if disclosed to unauthorized recipients. SECNAVINST 5510.36, Appendix A, defines classified information as

—–“[i]nformation that has been determined to require protection against unauthorized disclosure in the interests of national security and is classified for such purposes by appropriate classification authority per the provisions of E.O. 12958 or any predecessor Order.” The official definition is found in E.O. 12958.

E.O. 12958 defines classified information as “information that has been determined pursuant to this order or any predecessor order to require protection against unauthorized disclosure and is marked to indicate its classified status when in documentary form.” Id., at § 1.1(c).

The Order defines information as “any knowledge that can be communicated or documentary material, regardless of its physical form or characteristics, that is owned by, produced by or for, or is under the control of the United States Government.” Id., at § 1.1(b).

Classified information is defined in E.O. 12968 as “information that has been determined pursuant to Executive Order No. 12958, or any successor order, Executive Order No. 12951, or any successor order, or the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2011), to require protection against unauthorized disclosure.” Id., at § 1.1(d).

Many statutes include “Restricted Data” (RD) within their definitions of classified information as a shorthand reference to information protected for interests of national security. However, RD is distinct from classified information because it is defined by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 USC §§ 2011 et seq.), is protected from unauthorized disclosure whether or not it meets the standards for classification set forth in E.O. 12958, and is subject to a regulatory regime completely separate from that governing information classified pursuant to E.O. 12958.

RD is defined as “all data concerning (1) design, manufacture, or utilization of atomic weapons; (2) the production of special nuclear material; or (3) the use of special nuclear material in the production of energy, but shall not include data declassified or removed from the Restricted Data category pursuant to section 2162 of this title.” 42 USC § 2014(y).

Statutes that include RD as classified information include:

The National Security Act of 1947 (“any information that has been determined pursuant to Executive Order No. 12356 of April 2, 1982, or successor orders, or the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. §§ 2011 et seq.), to require protection against unauthorized disclosure and that is so designated”), at 50 U.S.C. § 438(b)(2); and   The Classified Information Procedures Act (CIPA) (“any information or material that has been determined by the United States Government pursuant to an Executive order, statute, or regulation, to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national security and any restricted data, as defined in paragraph r. of section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. § 2014(y))”), at 18 U.S.C. App. III, § 1(a).

….the Military Rules of Evidence 505 definition of classified information tracks that used for CIPA: “any information or material that has been determined by the United States Government pursuant to an executive order, statute, or regulations, to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national security, and any restricted data, as defined in 42 U.S.C. § 2014(y).”

Mil. R. Evid. 505(b)(1). Therefore, RD is protected during courts-martial using Mil. R. Evid. 505 procedures in the same way as information classified under E.O. 12958. Trial counsel prosecuting a case involving RD will need a court security officer who understands and has experience with the requirements for safeguarding RD.

C. Substance of Classified Information. For information to be classified under E.O. 12958, it must be owned by, produced by or for, or be under the control of the United States Government, and fall within one or more of the following categories of information:
1. Military plans, weapons systems, or operations;
2. Foreign government information;
3. Intelligence activities (including special activities), intelligence sources or methods, or cryptology;
4. Foreign relations or foreign activities of the United States, including confidential sources;
5. Scientific, technological, or economic matters relating to the national security;
6. United States Government programs for safeguarding nuclear materials or facilities; or
7. Vulnerabilities or capabilities of systems, installations, projects or plans relating to the national security.

Assuming the information meets the above criteria, it can be classified only if an “Original Classification Authority” (OCA) determines that the unauthorized disclosure of the information reasonably could be expected to cause damage to the national security and is able to identify or describe that possible damage. See, E.O. 12958, §§ 1.2 and 1.5. An OCA is an official authorized in writing by the President, or by those authorized officials, to classify information in the first instance.

Once an OCA classifies the information, the OCA must assign a classification level to the information. There are only three classification levels: TOP SECRET, SECRET, and CONFIDENTIAL. The common designation FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY is NOT a classification level. The OCA assigns a classification level based on the OCA’s subjective evaluation of the severity of the damage to the national security the OCA reasonably expects to occur from the unauthorized disclosure of the information.

If the OCA reasonably expects the unauthorized disclosure of the information would cause “exceptionally grave” damage to the national security, the information may be classified up to TOP SECRET.

If the OCA reasonably expects the unauthorized disclosure of the information would cause “serious” damage to the national security, the information may be classified no higher than SECRET.

If the OCA reasonably expects the unauthorized disclosure of the information would cause damage to the national security, the information is classified no higher than CONFIDENTIAL. See, E.O. 12958, § 1.3(a).  http://www.mcieast.marines.mil/Portals/33/Documents/EJC/Other%20Important%20Docs/JAG_Handbook_for_Litigating_National_Security_Cases.pdf

Another interesting addition is this citation from Google books which gives the CIA authorization of communication of restricted data:

Capture-section-y Capture-Agency Roles Capture-NSS

Additional policing powers:

(d)
(1) The United States Secret Service shall, in addition to any other agency having such authority, have the authority to investigate offenses under this section.

(2) The Federal Bureau of Investigation shall have primary authority to investigate offenses under subsection (a)(1) for any cases involving espionage, foreign counterintelligence, information protected against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national defense or foreign relations, or Restricted Data (as that term is defined in section 11y of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2014 (y)), except for offenses affecting the duties of the United States Secret Service pursuant to section 3056 (a) of this title. —18 USC § 1030 – Fraud and related activity in connection with computers

REFERENCES IN TEXT
Section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, referred to in subsec. (a)(1), is classified to section 2014 of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare.

TRANSFER OF FUNCTIONS For transfer of the functions, personnel, assets, and obligations of the United States Secret Service, including the functions of the Secretary of the Treasury relating thereto, to the Secretary of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 381, 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

TITLE 18: CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE

CHAPTER 47 — FRAUD AND FALSE STATEMENTS

Sec. 1030. Fraud and related activity in connection with computers
(a) Whoever–
(1) knowingly accesses a computer without authorization or exceeds authorized access, and by means of such conduct obtains information that has been determined by the United States Government pursuant to an Executive order or statute to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national defense or foreign relations, or any restricted data as defined in paragraph *r. of section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, with the intent or reason to believe that such information so obtained is to be used to the injury of the United States, or to the advantage of any foreign nation;—

*r. The term “operator” means any individual who manipulates the controls of a utilization or production facility.

Why these sections always refer back to paragraph r. of section 11 is just not very clear. Paragraph y has no such non sequitur quality . — The term “restricted data” means all data concerning (1) design,manufacture, or utilization of atomic weapons; (2) the production of special nuclear material; or (3) the use of special nuclear material in the production of energy, but shall not include data declassified or removed from the Restricted Data category pursuant to section 142.

{h. Classify, declassify, and trans-classify Restricted Data and classify and declassify Formerly Restricted Data as provided in section 142 of the Atomic Energy Act [section 142 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended]. https://www.directives.doe.gov/sdoa/delegations-     documents/204.154.pdf/at_download/file}

—–“The concept was initially introduced, with similar wording, in the Atomic Energy Act of 1946. The fact that its legal definition includes “all data” except that already specifically declassified has been interpreted to mean that atomic energy information in the United States is born classified, even if it was not created by any agency of the U.S. government. The authority of the DOE to implement this authority as a form of prior restraint was only once tested in court, with inconclusive results.[2][3]

—–Access to Restricted Data requires a Department of Energy Q clearance, which, As of 1993, requires a single-scope background investigation of the previous ten years of the applicant’s life by both the Office of Personnel Management and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and as of 1998 cost $3,225.[4]”    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Restricted_Data

And provided further, That as the term is used in section 2210(d) of this title, it shall include any such occurrence outside the United States if such occurrence involves source, special nuclear, or byproduct material owned by, and used by or under contract with, the United States: And provided further, That as the term is used in section 2210(c) of this title, it shall include any such occurrence outside both the United States and any other nation if such occurrence arises out of or results from the radioactive, toxic, explosive, or other hazardous properties of source, special nuclear, or byproduct material licensed pursuant to subchapters V, VI, VII, and IX of this division, which is used in connection with the operation of a licensed stationary production or utilization facility or which moves outside the territorial limits of the United States in transit from one person licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to another person licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

(r) The term “operator” means any individual who manipulates the controls of a utilization or production facility.

(s) The term “person” means (1) any individual, corporation, partnership, firm, association, trust, estate, public or private institution, group, Government agency other than the Commission, any State or any political subdivision of, or any political entity within a State, any foreign government or nation or any political subdivision of any such government or nation, or other entity;

And just to be sure the average citizen cannot make any sense of what the law refers to presently the Subsec. are changed so past references are no longer valid which means poring over the codes to find where they went:

[Subsec. (r). Pub. L. 85-256 added subsec. (r). Former subsec. (r) redesignated (w). Subsecs. (s), (t). Pub. L. 85-256 redesignated former subsecs. (o) and (p) as (s) and (t), respectively. ] http://us-code.vlex.com/vid/sec-definitions-19250980

42 USC Division A, Subchapter XI – CONTROL OF INFORMATION

While looking for current sections so changed I came across another entry which included an additional reference to the missing paragraph r. meaning:

18a USC Rule – Definitions

….restricted data, as defined in paragraph r. of section 11 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 ( 42 U.S.C. … (a) “Classified information”, as used in this Act, means any information … as used in this Act, means the national defense and foreign relations of the United States. …

which leads to here:

10 USC § 948a – Definitions

(8) National security.— The term “national security” means the national defense and foreign relations of the United States.

(2) Classified information.— The term “classified information” means the following:

—–(A) Any information or material that has been determined by the United States Government pursuant to statute, Executive order, or regulation to require protection against unauthorized disclosure for reasons of national security.

—–(B) Any restricted data, as that term is defined in section 11 y. of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2014 (y)). http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/10/948a

By the definitions given it is clear the scope of what can be classified is so great just about anything can be stamped a secret and by additional restrictions such information can become so secret, those who receive notice of such demands cannot reveal the secret methods so involved. In the thick of this are computers as back-bones of data transfer:

18 USC § 1030 – Fraud and related activity in connection with computers.

A very long section if people are so inclined to read. What caught my attention was the link which included the final piece of the national Security secrecy puzzle:

18a USC Rule – Short title——–This Act may be cited as the “Interstate Agreement on Detainers Act”.

—-“The Supreme Court of the United States has held that the Interstate Agreement on Detainers Act[2] allows for a trial of any untried indictment, information, or complaint within 180 days.[3] However, the prisoner needs to enter a request for final disposition to begin the clock.[4] The U.S. Marshals are given the power to issue writs of detainers in 28 U.S.C. 566(c), which is how the federal government interacts with the states to retrieve someone in state prison.”

I just found it quite odd that the one more specific definition for that paragraph r. reference was under a wholly different code section, much the way the IRS operates by placing term meanings thousands of pages after they have demanded an individual to obey an excise regulation not applicable to American citizens by law at all.

So what does all of this mean for the average American? Specifically, the federal government is violating the Constitutional restriction of privacy. American citizens are being subjected to clandestine operations of dubious merit without their knowledge which is also violating their Inalienable Rights to their property— to be secure— is being trespassed with secret rules to keep the trespass a secret. A willful violation and yet the government has held itself to be ABOVE the Law— cannot be sued for its transgressions, or held liable for losses so incurred by its reckless pursuits of possible criminals.

The potential of corruption is found in the aggressive nature of the mind-set of those who hold themselves as superior of Rights, only possible by legislative manipulations and nothing else. A tactic of coercive demands which place innocent people in the damning position of having to defend themselves from the over-reach of secret provisions with nothing but empty promises, that such information gathering techniques which are sanctioned by National Security, are not politically inspired witch-hunts for those contrived to be those dreaded terrorists.

To be accused of breaking some secret law, is unconstitutional. Federal authority has over-reached itself to such an extreme it is now absurd by its claims and quite dangerous to any one who may simply be advocating any position the fools in charge deem a threat to their power— real or imagined. That is the problem with power it becomes a fantasy unto itself.  Self-reinforcing power is the death of Rule by Law.  Once the tyrant decides more power is just an Executive Order away— with secrecy acting as a magic stamp— what people will be allowed to  know will continue to diminish even as the punitive threats and punishments dramatically increase. The very situation people fear the most will be the norm and nobody will know about it as secrecy demands such knowledge to be  punishable as well.

This is why the Bill of Rights was meant to act as a safe-guard against such abuses of power. The rights are restrictions upon any enumerated power, which by law are the only powers of genuine authority as consented by proper delegation of authority. The People in this nation are equals in sovereignty which is why when people no longer believe in their Rights they soon lose them to those who swear they have no meaning at all.

The Law cannot be an absurdity unto itself. The rules cannot mock the law by secrecy. The people who work as civil servants cannot give themselves a power which by its actions relieves them of their Duties as sworn to uphold and to protect. These people are committing sedition and yet they claim that too is an implied power. To cause Harm against the People is Treason. We the People are their masters not their peons.

The foul game of money has allowed a gross injustice to rise up and darken the conscience with an illusion of powers which do not exist. But violence does and from the reports across the country law enforcement abuse has reached a new level of civil debasement of Rights. Now the cops are no longer civil peace-keepers but draconian enforcers of ever more mindless nannyisms better suited for comedy shows than equality before the Law. Over-aggressive law enforcement is simply public conditioning for more ruthless civil impositions.

Laws are meant to keep the peace and allow mankind to form societies which protect the people from transgressions otherwise foul. The national mood is found in the disrespect so many have for one another. The natural tendency to resolve disputes small or large by violence lends credibility that more law enforcement is needed. The invisible secret hand keeps the cold, hard wheel grinding on the masses into ever more dire economic straights while another faction helps promote the very conditions so suffered. People who cannot get along never form agreements long enough to make anything happen. The only thing that unites people is their collective misery— and by then it is usually to late to make the course changes necessary to avoid the greater pit-falls.

The ugly reality is until the Law controls the money power, by the unit of account, in strict accordance with a labor unit of the same meaning, the ultra-wealthy will continue to exploit the relative differences to their benefit. When the labor of man cannot be exploited by sending jobs to another even poorer country the balance will shift back to an equilibrium this world has not known for quite some time. Either people recognize their equality within the meaning of Rights or they lose the real battle right along with their human dignity.

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