Skip

Feel secure in your papers and effects?
January 4, 2007 9:17 AM   Subscribe

Someone might be reading your mail.
posted by EarBucket (73 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Why dontcha pay my bills too since you're looknig at 'em.
posted by Mister_A at 9:20 AM on January 4, 2007 [2 favorites]


Does this mean I can forward all my junk mail to the White House?
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:26 AM on January 4, 2007


im in ur mailbox, checkin ur gay pron
posted by dflemingdotorg at 9:29 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


Wait. Bush can read??
posted by Skygazer at 9:29 AM on January 4, 2007


Ugh. This guy needs to go to jail.
posted by delmoi at 9:30 AM on January 4, 2007


Ding! You've Got (slightly used) Mail!
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 9:31 AM on January 4, 2007


Maybe someone should send a copy of the Constitution in the mail.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:32 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


This is why I only use postcards. Then I'm not tempted to send anything through the mail that I think will be secure in the first place.
posted by Plutor at 9:32 AM on January 4, 2007


Someday, our cyborg offspring will look back at all this (from beneath their lunar toxin shield) and laugh.

Until then, we're fucked.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 9:33 AM on January 4, 2007


Here's an idea... why don't we all just learn Arabic & start writing our e-mails in it? Our government wouldn't be able to translate a thing, al hamdu lillah!
posted by miss lynnster at 9:40 AM on January 4, 2007


Well my Aunt's strange recipes that she sends me are a domestic threat to one's health....
posted by Holy foxy moxie batman! at 9:42 AM on January 4, 2007


"This is why I only use postcards."

I only use smoke signals. But they're the dickens to read at night.
posted by crispynubbins at 9:44 AM on January 4, 2007


Maybe someone should send a copy of the Constitution in the mail.

Way to get yourself on the no-fly list there, Komrade.
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:45 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


NO TIME FOR THE LETTER OPENER GODDAMNIT, JUST TEAR IT OPEN WITH YOU TEETH! THE BOMB IS TICKING!

THIS ONE'S FROM OMAHA STEAKS!

DOES IT SAY ANYTHING ABOUT ALLAH IN IT?

It's the fine line between ultimate craven balls-out evil and total keystone cops incompetence of these crazy assholes that will mark the early twenty-first century as a truly embarrassing time to be an American.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:45 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


بوش في حاجة الى الذهاب بنفسه المءخره التي اغتصبها جمل للجحيم
posted by Skygazer at 9:45 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


بوش في حاجة الى الذهاب بنفسه المءخره التي اغتصبها جمل للجحيم

Oh, snap.
posted by peeedro at 9:47 AM on January 4, 2007


You got the idea, Skygazer! Now, um, what did you say?
posted by miss lynnster at 9:49 AM on January 4, 2007


I thought this month's copy of Sluts with Nuts smelled like Feds.
posted by The Straightener at 9:50 AM on January 4, 2007 [3 favorites]


He said "I'm going to Guantanamo!"
posted by InfidelZombie at 9:51 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


I suppose I should mention that they'll never be able to read my mail. It's encoded in ROT26 for extra security.
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:51 AM on January 4, 2007


It's encoded in ROT26 for extra security.

Of course, if someone does read it, you can sue them under the DMCA.
posted by eriko at 9:52 AM on January 4, 2007


WTF? Seriously. WTF?
posted by OmieWise at 9:53 AM on January 4, 2007


Let's see, we can assemble freely in free speech zones, habeus corpus is passe, email and phones were already monitored, facial recognition software on surveillance hidden cameras in place, the right counsel and to face your accuser -- ask Padilla, and now postal privacy gone? Where do we sign up to bend over for the mandatory freedom cavity searchs? Sheeeeesh . . . wake up your neighbors even if you have to break through their pods.
posted by ahimsakid at 9:54 AM on January 4, 2007


You got the idea, Skygazer! Now, um, what did you say?

Well....that all depends on how Google translation deals with the term: assraped by a camel from hell.
posted by Skygazer at 9:57 AM on January 4, 2007


i.e., A certain person (wink wink) needs to be...
posted by Skygazer at 9:58 AM on January 4, 2007


go crypto, baby!
bruce schneier (no, that's not me) has written a couple of fairly accessible books on crypto; i'm ordering one today.
posted by bruce at 9:59 AM on January 4, 2007


i'm ordering one today.

You realize they're going to open that package.
posted by nanojath at 10:03 AM on January 4, 2007


Woohoo! Freedom cavity searches! Finally I get some action!

(And I don't have to pay for it!)

(Well, not directly, anyway...)
posted by Samizdata at 10:05 AM on January 4, 2007 [2 favorites]


Google Translate does a fair job of retaining the meaning when reversing the translation:

Bush needs to go himself rectum, which usurped sentences of hell.
posted by scalefree at 10:18 AM on January 4, 2007


Maybe someone should send a copy of the Constitution in the mail.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:32 AM PST on January 4 [+]
[!]


Seriously. I think this is a great idea. Everyone should make thousands of copies of the constitution and start mailing them to the White House.

Does this mean I can forward all my junk mail to the White House?
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:26 AM PST on January 4

Another great idea!
posted by trip and a half at 10:28 AM on January 4, 2007


The Bush administration reminds me of those people who tell their spouse, "it's time to see other people" because they already are.
posted by elwoodwiles at 10:31 AM on January 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


Seriously. I think this is a great idea. Everyone should make thousands of copies of the constitution and start mailing them to the White House.

Like bush needs more copies of the constitution. He already hundreds of copies on quilted two-ply with aloe.
posted by srboisvert at 10:35 AM on January 4, 2007


No outrage is too bold and shameful for these people. After having the country clearly disapprove of his assertion that he can circumvent the Constitution, he continues to broadly reject the spirit and the letter of the document he swore on the Bible to protect and defend.

Shame on you George Bush.
posted by Devidicus at 10:37 AM on January 4, 2007


Seriously. I think this is a great idea. Everyone should make thousands of copies of the constitution and start mailing them to the White House.

No, mail them to eachother, in suspicious looking packages.

I'm serious too. It's a wonderful idea.
posted by poweredbybeard at 10:41 AM on January 4, 2007


I'm sure he's just gathering inspiration for his next op-ed.
posted by hermitosis at 10:44 AM on January 4, 2007


I don't know what's most disturbing. Is it that Bush wants to read my mail? Is it that his executive signing statements indicate a basic contempt for the legislative process? Or is it that we're all so inured to this crooked government and powerless in its face that our reaction is to crack jokes?
posted by Nelson at 10:47 AM on January 4, 2007


On a serious note, that's a lot of mail to peak into for "emergency reasons"
posted by Hands of Manos at 10:49 AM on January 4, 2007


Google is failing me. If one wanted to purchase a cheap copy of the U.S. Bill Of Rights and have it mailed to the White House, preferably with a PayPal option, where would I look?

Would be great if we had a place that could do this for under $1. Nothing fancy. Just a photocopy, plain envelope, and first class postage. Any services out there like this? Of course I can easily do it myself. But Americans (damn us) aren't like that. I think more would get sent if users could browse to a web page, fill out and order page, and pay with a 100% mark up.

Seriously. A link that said "Mail Bush the Bill Of Rights" that went to a PayPal payment page would be rather useful right now.
posted by Devidicus at 10:51 AM on January 4, 2007


http://www.pueblo.gsa.gov/

http://www.pueblo.gsa.gov/cic_text/misc/constitution/constitution.htm
posted by figment of my conation at 11:43 AM on January 4, 2007


Seriously. A link that said "Mail Bush the Bill Of Rights" that went to a PayPal payment page would be rather useful right now.

This might be more worthwhile.
posted by delmoi at 11:56 AM on January 4, 2007


No, mail them to eachother, in suspicious looking packages.

I would suggest a fuse-like string sticking out of the package, some talcum powder sprinkled under the packing tape, and a large stencil reading, "WARNING:Contents Under Pressure - Handle with Care - Do Not Bend"
posted by effwerd at 11:59 AM on January 4, 2007


I was thinking of something viral rather than personal.

Just my opinion, but I think a million copies of the Bill Of Rights mailed to Bush would do more to protect my civil rights that a million dollars sent to the ACLU.

1) A grass roots "I hate the president" campaign which gets picked up by national media would be a good thing. The election may have been a body blow, but we need to follow through with an upper cut.

2) I'm not a fan of the ACLU. I make plenty of donations, but certainly not to them.
posted by Devidicus at 12:06 PM on January 4, 2007


Unbelievable. Are we gonna wait for Bush to declare a third term for himself before we storm the Bastille? This "ticking time-bomb" theory has been used to justify so much unconscionable shit - I'm staggered that the White House still expects people to buy it. Even within the Tom Clancy parallel universe they seem to base their logic on, it's a mighty flimsy premise.

I'm loving this Constitution mailbomb plan being discussed here. A dozen copies or so a week of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution from even just half of the Mefites would add up in a hurry.
posted by EatTheWeak at 12:18 PM on January 4, 2007


So I can forget about the stuff I ordered from NewEgg, since it might be sitting on a countertop at the White House kitchen?
posted by Smart Dalek at 12:21 PM on January 4, 2007


So do these "signing statements" actually have the force of law? I've always assumed they don't and wouldn't stand up to scrutiny by the courts. I guess no one in congress cares enough to challenge them.
posted by maxwelton at 12:30 PM on January 4, 2007


Bush is like the subject of a restraining order...

Too bad we can't put a restraining order on him or put him in charge of a country we don't like and make him think we're jealous.
posted by Brown Jenkin at 12:33 PM on January 4, 2007


Just remember the fundamental problem here: it isn't that they'll read everyone's mail (or email, or tap everyone's phone, or whatever) -- it's that if an individual elects to speak out against the government (or similar) in completely legal ways that nevertheless represent an annoyance to the government, they can LEGALLY read/tap/etc. to obtain information about that individual that either involves illegal activity or embarrasing activity -- the former to prosecure, the latter to embarrass, and both to suppress the individual. No secret prisons required, it's all on the up-and-up.

So if you're planning to call governmental attention towards yourself these days, be sure to have all your ducks in a row and be proud of everything you've ever done.
posted by davejay at 12:58 PM on January 4, 2007


This "ticking time-bomb" theory has been used to justify so much unconscionable shit...

GODDAMMIT, EatTheWeak, OPEN THE LETTER & TELL ME IF IT'S THE BLUE WIRE OR THE RED WIRE! HURRY THE FUCK UP! 4... 3... 2...
posted by Devils Rancher at 12:58 PM on January 4, 2007


Prosecure. I invented a new word. PROSECUTE. Rgh.
posted by davejay at 12:59 PM on January 4, 2007


So do these "signing statements" actually have the force of law? I've always assumed they don't and wouldn't stand up to scrutiny by the courts. I guess no one in congress cares enough to challenge them.

Seriously. How is Congress still kowtowed before the surrealistically unbelievable abuses of power by the White House? Actually, I guess I don't completely blame them; if it were me in the House, I'd be looking at the last few years and waiting for someone to leap out and yell 'The Aristocrats!' and then we'd have habeus corpus back.

I kind of wish the ACLU would re-evaluate its priorities in light of the executive's newfound glee at running roughshod over the basic rule of law. That kid who wants to be in the yearbook with chainmail and a sword, who they've decided to represent? Yeah, no, probably not quite as important as a series of wholly unconstitutional excesses that have gutted the fourth amendment.
posted by Mayor West at 1:04 PM on January 4, 2007


Devil's Rancher - You'll never take me alive, American pigdog! Cobra-lalalalalalalalalala!

Seriously, how much of our foreign & domestic policy are they planning to crib from 24?
posted by EatTheWeak at 1:18 PM on January 4, 2007


My guess is that this is Bush making one last token grab for power before the Democrats get around to bending him over that barrell.

With his chief legal counsel jumping ship within minutes of the Democrats taking power, methinks there are fun times ahead.
posted by InnocentBystander at 1:19 PM on January 4, 2007


How many crimes are they going to admit they're committing before Congress acts? Can we do a class-action suit?
posted by amberglow at 3:04 PM on January 4, 2007


... To read your first-class mail, all W needs to do is "construe" you. No judges, no criminal courts, no FISA warrants, no due process, nada.
What a reassurance it is to learn from White House spokeswoman Emily Lawrimore that Bush was claiming no new authority. "In certain circumstances - such as with the proverbial 'ticking bomb' - the Constitution does not require warrants for reasonable searches," she said.
The "'ticking bomb'"! I must have missed the day in 10th grade when we covered the part of the Constitution that talks about that. ...

posted by amberglow at 3:29 PM on January 4, 2007


How many crimes are they going to admit they're committing before Congress acts? Can we do a class-action suit?

If they commit a crime that affects you, that would give you standing to seek redress in a court. As a rule, that's how obnoxious laws are overturned - by judges. You can't expect politicians, normally the same group who came up with the obnoxious law in the first place, to intelligently review their actions and resile from the stupid position they took in order to win the votes of morons; but you can expect wisdom from professional arbiters of disputes with years of legal training and experience. Of course on occasion you will be pleased to see wisdom from elected representatives, or disappointed to see folly from judges; but when trying to win justice, the way to place your bets is with the courts.
posted by aeschenkarnos at 3:47 PM on January 4, 2007


i know it's the courts, but if they're doing all this secretly, there's no way to prove it's happening to us individually--that's why i asked about a class-action suit--the American People v. the Administration.

In the wiretapping court cases, there's no progress or justice because the Administration is refusing to provide info on what they're doing and who it affects (itself not legal i don't think).
posted by amberglow at 3:50 PM on January 4, 2007


Bill and signing statement. [via]
posted by kirkaracha at 3:56 PM on January 4, 2007


...The argument against a president using signing statements to alter Congress' intent as to meaning and enforcement of new laws is once again based in the constitution. Article I, Section 1 clearly states, "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives." Not in a Senate and House and a president. Along the long road of committee consideration, floor debate, roll call votes, conference committees, more debate and more votes, the Congress alone creates the legislative history of a bill. It can also be argued that by attempting to reinterpret or even nullify parts of a bill which he has signed, the president is exercising a type of line-item veto, a power not currently bestowed on presidents. ...
posted by amberglow at 4:17 PM on January 4, 2007


and don't forget this, from a year ago--they've already been doing for a while: ... The Reuters report noted a letter that an 81-year-old retired history professor received from a long-time colleague in the Philippines. Before it was delivered, Customs agents opened it, screened it, resealed it, and then sent it to its destination.
“It was a big surprise,” Goodman, who taught at the University of Kansas, told Reuters. “The public should know that this is being done. Nobody whom I know had any idea that this was going on. And as far as I know, it’s never been announced. It’s never been revealed that this is being done.”
No warrant, no notice, no suspicion of wrongdoing. It’s just the federal government reading your mail — just in case. ...

posted by amberglow at 4:20 PM on January 4, 2007


8238;اعطني الحرية او اعطني الموت.
posted by carsonb at 5:17 PM on January 4, 2007


oh, fudge. "Give me liberty or give me death."

Bush opts for the latter.
posted by carsonb at 5:18 PM on January 4, 2007


they've already been doing for a while

But this is something new, amberglow. That article's talking about opening international mail, which they've been able to do since long before Bush took office. The idea, however, that the executive branch can intercept and open domestic mail without a warrant is unprecedented, as far as I know.
posted by EarBucket at 5:32 PM on January 4, 2007


You know what is going to be hilarious? In the next few years, when the Republicans no longer hold the presidency, all of this shit that they have passed is still going to be in place. And the right wing pundits are going to work themselves into an absolute froth the first time it's used against the American people by a sitting Democrat.

I'm looking forward to that. Till then, I'm weeping for our country.
posted by quin at 7:24 PM on January 4, 2007


you're right, Ear--thanks

The Church Committee's hearings on Mail Opening
posted by amberglow at 8:02 PM on January 4, 2007


So that's why my magazines are coming later and later.

(in all seriousness...I'm speechless.)
posted by SisterHavana at 10:30 PM on January 4, 2007


I'm looking forward to that.

I'm not looking forward to tyranny under any stripe or color.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:36 PM on January 4, 2007


So who has the W.A.S.T.E. invites?
posted by philomathoholic at 10:42 PM on January 4, 2007


Blazecock Pileon : I'm not looking forward to tyranny under any stripe or color.

[sigh] Nor am I. But I can't seem to get people behind my plans to revolt, and at this point, I'm old enough that the idea of leading a rebel army just makes me tired.

I mean, I figured that my rallying call of "We've got the tools, we've got the talent" would bring both geeks and anti-establishment folks out of the woodwork, but it hasn't happened. Yet.

So I've resigned myself to watching one of my favorite countries slowly slip into acquiescence. We are too satisfied to do what needs to be done, and too lazy to argue with Them.

Their take over strategy was brilliant. They waited till we, as a nation were sleeping and just walked in. And the sad truth of it is, that now that they are here, we are just way to comfortable to do anything about it.

My hope was/is that a shift in the power-brokers might rattle enough people to start paying attention again, but at this point I'm cynical enough to wonder if the Left is really divorced enough from the Right that a shift in power will even make a difference. I mean, if you accept that they are all taking lobbyist's money, they are probably all working for the same people if you dig hard enough.

So yeah. Wanna do a rebellion thing? It would be kinda like Star Wars. Or maybe V for Vendetta. Boondock Saints and Red Dawn work as well. No? Busy this Sunday? I understand. We can do it later...
posted by quin at 11:23 PM on January 4, 2007


Yeah, quin, it's like the American public has stood up and mumbled, "I'm irked as heck and I'm not going to take too much more."
posted by leftcoastbob at 11:43 PM on January 4, 2007


مرة أخرى : حتى بوش يمكن ان يقرأ؟

(Again: wait, Bush can read?)

Ooooh, Google Translate is fun!
posted by bitter-girl.com at 3:17 PM on January 5, 2007


Interesting Google Translate tidbit ...

I entered "George Bush belongs in prison." I set the translation to go from English to Arabic, and it dutifully spat out some Arabic. I copied the Arabic, pasted it back into Google, sent it to go back to English and it gave me ...

"George W. Bush belongs in prison."

It fascinates me that it added the middle initial.
posted by chuq at 5:33 PM on January 5, 2007


Doubting chuq, I tried it myself. And he ain't lying. The Google translator does, in fact, add the 'W.'

Which makes me wonder why that would be; Is Google revealing some sort of bias, or is there now a character for George Bush in Arabic that their translation algorithms are simply parsing and correcting. Perhaps something else that I'm completely missing?

Either way it's an excellent find on chug's part. Well done sir.
posted by quin at 10:05 PM on January 5, 2007




« Older Korean War POWs who defected to China   |   Cleaning up space junk may erase history Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post