Oliver Stone: Don’t Stand By While the NSA’s Surveillance Machine Eats Our Civil Liberties

After The Guardian and The Washington Post revealed the astonishing scope of some of the NSA's surveillance activities, some people claimed that Americans wouldn't care. But Oscar-winning director Oliver Stone doesn't accept that.

In the video below, produced by the ACLU, Stone discusses the NSA spying program, recalling a disastrous legacy of unchecked government abuse of power. He reflects on the terrible consequences of runaway surveillance during the 1960s and 1970s, when intelligence services exploited fears of external threats to the United States to enjoy a carte blanche for their illegal activities. "We did not pass the Fourth Amendment to protect those with something to hide," Stone tells us. We passed that amendment "because we know all too well the cost of an unaccountable government."

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Now is a critical time in our nation's history for all Americans to stand up for our civil liberties, Stone says – by asking representatives in Congress to roll back the surveillance state.

Section 215 of the Patriot Act and Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act, passed in the wake of the September 11 attacks, have drastically eroded our Fourth Amendment rights. These statutes allow the government to access our most sensitive information without meaningful judicial oversight.

"I won't stand idly by while our civil liberties are eaten by the NSA surveillance machine," Stone says. "You shouldn't either." You can join Stone and the ACLU in demanding an end to the surveillance state, by signing a petition calling on Congress to repeal these problematic sections of the Patriot Act and the FAA. The time to act is now.

Click here for more from the ACLU on the NSA surveillance program.

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Love Is Illegal

The NSA is eating our civil liberties? Oh really? What civil liberties? I don't have any civil liberties. I don't even have the right to download a picture or love someone, so everything you people are saying is a joke.

Suffolk Jason

It is possible, to some degree, to take steps to protect your privacy. For example, instead of Google, I use DuckDuckGo. Instead of Facebook, I use Zurker.com - Zurker is a member owned social network. This is what its co-founder and custodian posted in response to the NSA revelations:-

"As Custodian of Zurker, I hereby declare this: as long as I am Custodian of Zurker, I will protect your data from prying eyes by any means necessary.

Apparently, Twitter were able to resist the government's demands for access to their data, and I hope to resist the government by legal means and keep Zurker Inc. in the USA. But if I must, and there is no other way, I will keep the NSA's hands off our data by moving our servers abroad. I will hire engineers to help me develop a distributed and redundant encrypted network that stays up even if one server is taken down in a raid."


Thank you Oliver Stone and ACLU. I agree that the US government should stop its surveillance of US citizens. Nixon and now Obama repeating the same mistakes.


Elkins v Federal Aviation Administration, 8:12CV2009

L. S.

Text of 7/12 Letter to Sen. Diane Fienstein:

Dear Senator Feinstein,

I am a father, taxpayer, businessperson, employer, patriot and loyal constituent of yours. I thank you for your skilled and principled service to us all.

You are in a unique position to judge the true terrorist threat to our national security, and the true cost, in liberty, of our actions to thwart it. Having observed your character, I trust your judgement.

As a citizen, I am not in a position to judge. It's a shame, because our democracy relies on, as the founders so clearly articulated, "an informed electorate". We instead are forced to trust our government- an idea that seems contrary to our founding documents and the Federalist Papers that explain them, or good sense based on the lessons of history.

My father and namesakes (Staff Sergeant- US Army- Korea, Grandfather, Colonel/MD US Army- Pacific WWII) and generations before them fought and died for some basic beliefs. I know these beliefs well, as I was raised with profound respect for them. They swore and oath and risked everything to protect the Constitution of the United States- a set of absolute mandates that they felt would insure the liberty and freedom of the generations that would follow them.

The provisions of the constitution, to them, where absolute. I know this from their own testimony. These provisions, they believed, would be upheld by the people and in the end, stay intact to protect us from any attempt to betray them, no matter the justification.

Here is my question: How does our constitution allow for the actions and apparatus of the NSA, as recently outlined by Edward Snowden? The wording and intent seems crystal clear, and in direct conflict with the current actions of our government:

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

I would appreciate your thoughts, as you have been given the power, by the people including me, to represent us in this matter. You have taken a very deliberate oath to do so.

Thank you

L. S.

Oath of Office
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God


ACLU you're full of s--t! I went to your ACLU office in Las Vegas and complained to you about the government harassing me. Not only did you not help me, but the lawyer in the office, put on the pesticide machine in use at the time, to harass me. You ACLU never helped any of us who asked for your help.

Tim and Jan

Thank you Oliver for speaking out and speaking your mind. The nation and the world needs more people like you doing the right thing. Thanks again.


I'm a social conservative and former war protestor who is under FBI patriot act style surveillance.
I've read in a book they can and do do "pin traps" on phone calls you make and misdirect them to FBI personnel who then pose as the intended recipients.
I don't know if they've done that to me but I suspect they have occasionally diverted emails I sent.
My worry is can they under the patriot act divert letters you send, or are sent to you, via U.S. postal service? This may have happened to me.
Does anyone know someone with the answer to my question?

Thanks, Frantic in Florida


After being an object of the DHS's incessant spying for three years, I can attest to their pervasive actions toward all of us. My phone is tapped, everything I do on the computer is intercepted via MitM attacks by a government contractor and have no doubt that they are checking my mail. Why me? I had the audacity of wanting the Fast and Furious bunch prosecuted. Oh, and I also am war Veteran.

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