tv Headline News RT January 21, 2014 4:00pm-4:31pm EST
coming up on our new poll shows how divided americans are over n.s.a. surveillance have never heard president obama's reform promises well most of the people who have but don't believe the reforms go far enough a pulse of the nation next and in the u.k. the pleas of a pakistani man who lost his father to a u.s. drone attack go on answered the man wanted to know if the u.k. courts and the british government helped the cia conduct that drone strike but the courts say no report from london coming up and debate is brewing over an upcoming execution of a mexican citizen in the u.s. the mexican government claims that the man's death would violate international law no more on that later in the show.
it's tuesday january twenty first four pm in washington d.c. i'm maggie lopez and you're watching r.t. america well for the first time since president obama's speech announcing major reforms to the national security agency new polls show where americans stand on the issue of surveillance a study conducted by the pew research center found that half of the respondents had not heard about the speech or reforms at all forty one percent say they heard a little and just over eight percent heard a lot about the n.s.a. reforms of those who heard about the speech seventy three percent believe the reforms will not increase their privacy and seventy nine percent think the changes will not impact u.s. counterterrorism efforts so a lot of the country appears to be still divided on the issue or confused about its implications even after the president's speech political commentators. am sex
recently wrote an op ed on r.c. dot com and he joins me now to help me sort through some of this confusion sound according to this new study half of americans haven't heard about the n.s.a. reform and not even the speech should we take that to mean that the speech is the reforms were so minimal. radar or that people simply don't care or is it something else i think it's probably a little bit of both i think this is naturally this somewhat of a wonky topic and i think the n.s.a. has made it a wonky topic too it's not just about who should the government spy on everybody which is what's really going on but when you hear things like section two fifteen bulk metadata to left in the collection people's eyes tend to glaze over and that's a lot of the stuff that the president's speech was focused on when he says he's going to appoint a privacy panel to the top secret files of court people are like what's the phase of court when you hear about changes to national security letters you know these are all topics that are slightly wonky that people don't firmly have quite a grasp on yet and the n.s.a. the way they've played with the language on what collection means what we're
tension means what we're view means they've sort of turn the words upside down which is muddied the debate even further so yeah i think a lot of people weren't paying attention to it and those who are paying attention don't fully understand what's going on and plus the mainstream media this isn't exactly the favorite topic if you remember the government shutdown everybody knew what was going on there you had a countdown clock you had all the issues being brought up you had constant coverage with this the mainstream media only focuses on this when there's a big story like the president's speech so let's take a look at another part of that very same pew poll when asked whether they approve of the government's n.s.a. collecting metta phone meditate on telephones and the internet fifty three percent disapprove and forty percent approve now that's the first time that the number of people who disapprove has actually been higher than the ones who approve what can you attribute that to well i think it shows that the n.s.a. and its defenders in congress and mr sharon losing the n.s.a. loves being in the dark they love being in this in secret these disclosures of forced them to mount this p.r.
push to go on sixty minutes to explain these programs and the more and more they've done that you've seen public approval of these programs they're trying to defend go down and now we have the majority of americans disapproving of these programs it also speaks to what edward snowden what the journalists he's been. within what organizations like the a.c.l.u. and the in the have been doing since these disclosures to try and get the american people outraged by what the government is doing and it seems they're being more effective the more the people learn about these topics the more they distrust him now another issue that was addressed during this very same paul was what to do with edward snowden and whether he is a whistleblower a hero or a traitor now that issue was kind of split fifty fifty forty five percent say that they believe that he helped the public interest with those leaks forty three percent say that he thought the public interest but the majority of people say that he should be prosecuted under u.s. law so what should we make of this man and of this poll that americans want to know
more about the n.s.a. want to know more about what they're collecting but also disapprove of the person that brought this information to light i think the question is prosecuted for what . edward snowden admits that he committed a crime glenn greenwald was asked about it last week and he admits that it would snowden. broke the law but what should he be charged with should be charged with stealing government property maybe should he be charged with espionage no absolutely not i think the majority of those people polled who say that should be prosecuted wouldn't go and say you should be charged with espionage look there's a streak of civil disobedience here people are willing to break the law pay the consequences of that it kind of makes more powerful that they're doing but operating in this new post chelsea manning world in which when you try and engage in civil to disobedience and spill some secrets that expose wrongdoing by the government you are going to have your life ruined you're not going to go to jail in the way that martin luther king went to jail or in the way that other people who committed civil disobedience went to jail and then can go back on their life they are going to ruin your life they're going to charge you with espionage and take you
down and you have to change the calculation here now something that i want to bring up sam is in a recent op ed that you wrote for r.t. dot com you said that president obama's reforms are quote a trojan horse what did you mean by that thanks for the plug. what i meant is look this this speed. it was billed as a major reform speech the n.s.a. . and there were some reforms introduced but ultimately the speech was focused on section two fifteen bulk metadata collection this was the first program revealed by the snowden documents it's also a program that's in danger it was almost defunded in july of last year and that was before seven months of more of n.s.a. disclosures there's efforts in the senate to undo this program and one federal judge has ruled it likely unconstitutional so i think the president wanted to come out and save this program before it gets completely taken out in june first twenty fifteen it expires all together and they're not might not be enough votes in congress to end the program today but there certainly are no votes in congress next year to renew it either so the president made a deal he says look the government we're not going to retain this information
anymore he didn't say anything about collecting they're going to still keep collecting the information i compared him to cutting off his left hand to save his right hand there cutting off the left hand of attention to save the right hand or the other hand of collection and i think we'll see if this gets the courts and congress off his back and sam that wasn't a shameless plug this is i encourage viewers to go to r.c. dot com and check out your op ed in full and learn a little bit more about the n.s.a. the reforms especially for those fifty percent who don't know anything about it at all sam sachs political commentator thanks mate well it was one of the most contentious supreme court rulings of our time exactly four years ago today the nine justices voted five to four in favor of citizens united and its case against the federal election commission that decision paved the way for unlimited corporate spending in federal elections essentially saying that money is a form of political speech so one has changed in the u.s. in the four years since that historic supreme court decision in our lives while takes a look back. all four years ago today the political game in america changed
that's when the supreme court struck down more than a century of campaign finance law and its citizens united decision the move paved the way for a limited political spending here's what we've learned in the last four years first billion is the new million before citizens united outside election spending was always in the millions take a look and two thousand we saw more than fifty million dollars an outside spending by the next presidential election in two thousand and four that increased to nearly two hundred million in two thousand and eight was almost three hundred forty million dollars now it's spending and then citizens united happened in two thousand and twelve that was a game changer and in the very next election year in two thousand and twelve that is when we passed the billion mark so clearly you have to pay to play the data also shows disproportionate spending among political parties take a look at the numbers compiled by open secrets dot com as you can see in two
thousand and four two thousand and six and two thousand a liberal groups outspent conservative groups in national elections but posted this in the united states which is up and now conservative groups are spending huge amounts more on our election than liberal groups in two thousand and twelve conservative groups spent nearly seven hundred twenty million dollars liberal groups on the other hand spent less than half of that but as we know president obama was reelected to a second term and much of those super pacs fund the words directed at attacking him so the investment for big donors and corporations don't always pay off for the political game has yet to be perfected and while it's up for debate how money impacts elections what we know for sure is that astronomically more money is being poured into elections and we can only expect campaign spending to rise in washington liz wahl are today. well the pleas for justice of
a pakistani man living in the united kingdom were ignored by a court of appeals this week for two years nor khan has been pushing for the english courts to take up the case of his father's death his father was killed by what is believed to be a cia drone strike in northwestern pakistan in two thousand and eleven now khan wants to know if the u.k. helped the u.s. conduct that strike but it seems as if his efforts have hit yet another snag artie's tests are cilia as the latest. the court of appeal here in the u.k. essentially blocked in on president that case relating to a u.s. drone strike ruling that it could not be heard because that would be asking a u.k. court to pass judgement on the united states now the man behind the case is nor khan whose father was a tribal elder from pakistan's northwestern tribal region and he was killed along with some forty others in a u.s. cia drone strike in march two thousand and eleven of the something to his father was not connected to any terrorism or militancy and even opposed it however on the
other hand the cia reportedly still claims that it had quote unquote killed no noncombatants in that strike so for two years nor khan has been is seeking clarification on the policies and practices of the british government who is trying to get a judicial review asking the courts to examine whether officials at the british intelligence agency g c h q it in fact shared information about targets in pakistan with the cia and whether this in turn could make the british spies complicit in murder or war crimes as the law here states so here we are today with the court of appeal ruling essentially deciding against a review it's understood as not wanting to damage the u.k.'s relations with the united states consulate your also noted that the government in the form of foreign secretary william hague who is responsible for g c h q he had lodged a public interest in unity application in order to stop constantly him from being heard which the lawyer says suggests that there may be things that william hague knows that he does not wish to disclose and there lies the source really of public
anger this lack of transparency in what is a very controversial and increasingly unpopular practice but as it stands today the appeal here is loss of it seems we won't be finding out this time if the u.k. was indeed helping the cia that was artie's tests are silly a reporting from london while international negotiators have started to arrive in geneva switzerland ahead of a second round of syrian peace discussions set to begin on wednesday represented. the united nations russia the us the syrian government and its opposition will take part in those talks u.n. secretary ban ki moon had extended a last minute invitation to iran to participate however that invitation was rescinded after the syrian opposition threatened to pull out of the negotiations altogether igor piskun off reports from switzerland the international peace conference on syria taking place here in this small swiss town of montreal on the shores of lake geneva is truly an international achievement it took so much time
and so much effort but it's finally going to happen soon enough doherty's and the rebels after years of fighting and unimaginable violence are going to finally sit down and negotiate but if the government did confirm that it was going to take part in a conference and long time ago the same. opposition is in constant change the last twenty four hours and mainly because of iran a key regional player which was also supposed to take porton moscow and washington which had been pretty much we're going to i think this conference had been saying that it's that why we depend on the for this patient or anyone with an influence on the situation there in syria and turn around is definitely one of these. you remember how the opposition reacted to the u.n. inviting they made revoke the returning the tickets in six hours time all in all this is an ugly situation simply a lot of added to iran not taking part in the conference is not
a catastrophe but it will definitely not help unite the muslim community in the fight against terror which is also going to be one of the key issues on the table here in one troll since besides the political opposition it is widely known that terrorists including al qaeda linked groups are fighting there in syria as well so as the world's chief diplomat to continue to gather here in montreal of course we'll be covering the whole conference and we'll be bringing you the latest details as it happens. that was igor piskun off reporting. the upcoming execution of a man convicted in the shooting death of a houston police officer has created a sort of diplomatic standoff between the u.s. and mexico that's because forty six year old edgar tamayo is a mexican national now mexican authorities and a former texas governor are appealing to governor rick perry for a temporary stay to hold off on that execution in two thousand and four the international court of justice said the u.s. had to review the execution sentences of fifty one mexicans in
a decision known as the event judgment a statement by the mexican foreign affairs ministry it reads in part quote should exit to my o.b. executed without a review of criminal proceedings and a reconsideration of his sentence in accordance with the i.c.j. rolling this would be the third time a mexican included in the event judgment has been executed a clear violation by the united states of its international obligations under the vienna convention secretary john kerry secretary of state john kerry that is had also asked for a temporary ripley a reprieve from execution in a statement he released back in september kerry said quote i have no reason to doubt the facts of mr to my own fiction and as a former prosecutor i have no sympathy for anyone who would murder a police officer but he warned that this man's execution could impact how americans in legal trouble are treated a brought to mile was found guilty in one thousand nine hundred four of the death
of officer ga a goddess outside of a local nightclub now an appeal hearing to consider the clemency happened today in u.s. district court judge for the western district of texas in austin to miles execution is scheduled for tomorrow here to discuss the details and international repr cautions of this execution richard dieter is the executive director of the death penalty information center thank you so much for joining me now first of all let's start off with the latest information. did anything come up from this hearing this morning i don't think the judge has made a ruling but will be making it prior to the execution obviously this is a challenge to the clemency process in texas which has been upheld in the past now i know that you were against the death penalty but this case goes beyond whether you are for or against capital punishment it's not arguing over whether or not this man is in fact guilty of this crime this is about an international diplomacy issue can you explain a little bit more detail sure i mean i think the chief concern is that u.s.
citizens who travel abroad may get arrested or their children may get arrested want to consult with their u.s. embassy very quickly and the treaty that protects that is the same treaty that's implicated in tomorrow's case he being a mexican citizen had the right to consult with his embassy or his consulate when he was arrested and that right wasn't given to him so all that's being asked for is a hearing just let's see would that have changed things and so far that hearing hasn't happened so there's certainly is more at stake here than simply for against the death penalty so what exactly is the vienna convention if consular relations what would it have helps well first of all it's the bilateral kind of treaty both countries signed it to mutually respected in the u.s. back in the one nine hundred sixty s. signed and ratified this treaty so there's no question about our adoption of it and we even said that the international court of justice shall be the arbiter of this
treaty and so a case was brought before there in the u.s. was found in violation and still these kinds of hearings haven't happened so now there's legislation in our congress to try to rectify this to try to get texas to do what the true do requires but that legislation hasn't been passed yet now in the recent l.a. times article you said that mexico usually intervenes in capital punishment cases before the trial actually happens but that. what happened in edgar to my own case why is that and what difference would it have made if they had intervened before the trial well i mean that there is a series of events when the first mexican national faced execution this whole issue dawned on governments and dawned on mexico that you know what could they do to stop it and at the late eleventh hour it's very difficult to stop the train of execution so about ten years ago mexico decided to strive to stop these before they go to trial of void the death penalty to miles case goes back twenty
years ago so he you know there was no mexican program at that time what difference it would have made well i mean at a trial you want to present the person's family history and that family history is is over in mexico the people the culture the language the mental institutions if there were any all of that is hard to get for a texas lawyer but for a mexican embassy they can go right to it and that kind of evidence could have been presented to the jury and if only one juror had said life to my would not get the death penalty now does this come down to something as simple as the miranda rights where the. that they prepare and that's it that's exactly right it's one more line to the miranda rights in the u.s. state department has issued cards to police officers around the country with that language in various languages so that you could read it to a citizen who i mean a foreign citizen who doesn't understand english but few police use those few
courts have demanded that they be used the miranda rights is protected under the u.s. constitution this doesn't have that full full weight now back in two thousand and eight president bush had appealed against the execution of another mexican national who was a factor a part of that world court ruling asking them to reconsider this however then texas solicitor general ted cruz convinced the supreme court that the state does not have to add here to world court rulings why is that and what type of a precedent does that set for the future the dangerous precedent i think you have to remember too that president bush was before that governor bush of texas so here is president bush ordering texas courts to review this and as you said the the issue was brought up to the supreme court what the court said was that there needs to be legislation saying how the treaty should be used how it should be applied in
texas in just because the u.s. side didn't ratify that doesn't mean that texas has to follow it they do as the law of the land but only through congress's implementation and there's a bill senator leahy of vermont has introduced the you know the vienna convention compliance act to get this but i'm told congress acts texas feels they are protected in in a sense under the law they are so they're not saying we want all of this right but there needs to be legislation well as you mentioned this is the last few hours before this man scheduled execution there are a number of others that are on trial so potentially not affecting this man but maybe in the future richard dieter the exit executive director of the death penalty information center thank you so much thank you. well to ukraine now where anti-government demonstrators have taken to the streets nine to after night ever since new laws were in place limiting the rights of its citizens to protest thirty people were arrested today according to the interior ministry and more than one
hundred one thousand nine hundred s. have been injured since sunday afternoon the new law bans protesters from wearing masks or helmets at rallies they are allowed to set up tents or sound equipment systems without police prom mission and convoys of five cars or more traveling together must seek a private approval protesters say that these laws and french on their rights are alexei euro chef king is in ukraine and brings us this report. tension may have come down in terms of the noise at the governmental court in kiev but it's still far from settled only a few meters are separating the police lines and the line of the protesters of the rioters and still sometimes exchanging project hours at each other over the night we saw an attempt by the police to push the protesters off this particular place here the failed that's when the protesters started charging with the right of charging at the police the police had to withdraw and ever since then it's been like that the standoff continues over here it looks like yet another barricade with
what remains of the police cars which were burned here on sunday night basically separating the line of the rioters and the police from time to time the protesters and the police are exchanging projectiles these rocks over here still being used to be thrown at the police during the night we also saw something very can be could be curious for ukraine in cases of vigilantism when the protesters organize something of a safari hunt on what they describe as pro-government provocateurs the court several of them took them to the revolutionary headquarters organized the cynic's royal then took them out into the independence square and urged them to apologize for their actions more than several hundred people are still injured in hospitals including more than one hundred police. which is something unprecedented not only for ukraine but for many other countries in the world and the word on the street here is that the authorities may actually consider implementing an emergency state in the country on thursday if things continue the way they do it or certainly
following all the developments in kiev and bring you the latest updates as we get them. that was our tease alexei yera cesky reporting well it might not be neatly packaged with a made in china stamped sealed on the bottom but it appears as if the far east as exporting gets another product to american consumers although this one is much more nefarious than most a new study published this week in the proceedings of the national academy of sciences journal says that china is export pollution to california contributing to extra small going to los angeles area according to the study that uses statistics from two thousand and six one fifth or twenty percent of china's total population pollution is it caused by producing goods for export to the us wind blows the factory pollution across the pacific in about six days resulting in an increase of twelve to twenty four percent of daily sulfate concentrations so while the u.s.
europe and japan brag about how brag about having lowered their carbon emissions significantly in recent years these scientists argue that they have lowered it so much as to shift away from china which is why air pollution levels are staying consistent and they have stayed consistent between two thousand and two thousand and nine or as researchers put it outsourcing production to china does not always relieve consumers in the united states or for that matter many countries in the northern hemisphere from the environmental impacts of air pollution so while consumers around the world enjoy the benefits of cheap technology consider the environmental blowback. and finally this hour losing a child is never easy illinois resident michael se and his wife know that all too well the couple lost their seventeen year old daughter ashley to a car crash last year and has been coping with her death ever since the couple was trying to move on with their lives when they received
a letter from office max and have brought their attention their daughters a tragic death back to the forefront of their minds the. it was addressed to mike's a or current business owner but right under mr says' name out in the open for anyone to read it says quote daughter killed in car crash the ses are now trying to figure out how this happened how office max knew about their daughter's death and why the company was storing this information about them here's mr se speaking with n.b.c. chicago's affiliate w in a q why would there have to come information why would they need there. what purpose does it serve anybody if you know they're and how much more information if they have there could they have i mean or anyone else how do they use it and what do they use it for. a statement released by office max apologizes for the mistakes and blames a third party mailing list provider for the error the letter went on to say quote based on a coleman area investigation today we believe this to be an inadvertent error and
we are continuing the investigation but while office max's mistake was stamped and delivered straight to the couple's mailbox many big data companies are finding out a lot more about their customers than meets the eye a recent report by the senate commerce committee found that the data broker experian for instance can't tell if a consumer bought a soft drink brand a last six months for instance whether they're using a laxative how often they visit the o.b.-g.y.n. how many miles they travel in a month and even how much whiskey they drank in the past thirty days so don't be surprised if the coupons you get in the mail seem tailor made for you and your whiskey are going. well boom bust is up next here on r t aaron a joins us now for a quick preview hi there aaron what do you got in store for us thanks meghan while they know a lot of stuff their backs are going to go on boom bust today dr ann pettifor she joins me from our london studio she joined me earlier today and she talked about sovereign debt and much much more so you won't want want to miss it plus i'll tell
you which american cities are most likely to achieve the american dream in it's all coming up so stay tuned one of those got to be washington d.c. thanks aaron lopez and that does it for now. its technology innovation and the developments around. the future of ard. the a look it was terrible they are look very hard to take a look to get along here plug never had sex with her rick perry play a little. more. live
the american . lives of a bit. i'm the president and i think a society bucket and big corporation trying to convince us to consume consume consume and the banks are trying to get all that money all about money and i'm a family that for a politician writing the laws and regulations to tax corporate bankers somehow must out. there is just too much crap is
a society. that. there i marinate it this is boom bust and these are the stories that we're tracking for you today. now first up and headed for one of the few economists who could actually claim to have predicted the crisis joined me earlier today from our london studios to talk sovereign debt and international finance you will want to miss it's a great interview plus could the fed be pulling back again on its current seventy five billion dollar month of bond buying program i'll let you know coming right out and finally in which hugh has cities are you most likely to achieve the american dream harrison i will say nothing at all starts right now.