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After Anti-Donation Executive Order, Bitcoin Donations For Snowden Jump 289

ZDNet reports that after a recent executive order from President Obama "said to have made it illegal to donate to Edward Snowden's fund," anonymous donations to the fund have soared -- at least ones as anonymous as Bitcoin makes possible. From the article: A new executive order signed into law this week by the president has one online community up in arms, after its loose wording effectively ruled out donating to Edward Snowden and others. In a post on Reddit's Bitcoin subreddit, members pledged to donate to the whistleblower's relief fund, despite the wording of the new executive order suggesting that doing so was illegal. In the new executive order, signed into law on Wednesday, US President Barack Obama declared cyber-threats aimed at the US a "national emergency." The order threatens sanctions against those (including US residents) who engage in cyberattacks and espionage activities that threaten US interests at home and abroad. The wording of the order specifically addresses any person whose "property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order who might have a constitutional presence in the United States." Redditors were quick to assume (likely correctly) that this includes Edward Snowden, who for more than a year-and-a-half has lived in Russia, evading US justice.
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After Anti-Donation Executive Order, Bitcoin Donations For Snowden Jump

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  • by Iamthecheese ( 1264298 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:06AM (#49408179)
    Fuck anonymous donations. As an act of civil disobedience I intend to donate directly from an account with my real name on it. They can come and get me.
    • Account number? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I am also thinking of doing just that

      What's the account number that I can donate to help out Mr. Snowden?

      To /. pranksters: This is serious, so please, spare your pranks for the next victim

      Thank you !

    • by dcollins117 ( 1267462 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @03:39AM (#49408555)
      I don't see any language that targets Mr. Snowden so I'm assuming it's perfectly fine to send him your donations. From TFS

      The order threatens sanctions against those (including US residents) who engage in cyberattacks and espionage activities that threaten US interests at home and abroad.

      Now that I think about it that sounds more like the NSA than Mr. Snowden.

      • by Livius ( 318358 )

        Now that I think about it that sounds more like the NSA than Mr. Snowden.

        I guess that means sanctions against members of Congress.

      • by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @04:44AM (#49408665)

        This suggests there's a list of people it is forbidden to donate too, but the list is secret: You don't get to see it until the FBI or CIA come after you for funding terrorism.

        • This suggests there's a list of people it is forbidden to donate too, but the list is secret: You don't get to see it until the FBI or CIA come after you for funding terrorism.

          This is alarmingly close to the secret laws Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn wrote about in the Gulag Archipelago.

        • Its not really a secret list. Giving material or monetary aid and support to any fugitive from the law or in support of any one breaking the law has already been illegal to some degree. That degree depends a lot on what you know when doing so. It has to do with the "mens rea" or state of mind. For instance, donations to a "feed the children" charity or a legal defense fund for someone when used to render such aid would likely not show intent and couldn't be prosecuted outside of who misused the funding.

          • by nbauman ( 624611 )

            That degree depends a lot on what you know when doing so. It has to do with the "mens rea" or state of mind. For instance, donations to a "feed the children" charity or a legal defense fund for someone when used to render such aid would likely not show intent and couldn't be prosecuted outside of who misused the funding.

            The Holy Land Foundation was a "feed the children" charity, and their managers were sentenced to effectively life in prison https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

            They had a hung jury, and the prosecution prosecuted them again until they got a jury that could convict. If they get a hung jury, they don't have evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, IMO.

            • It appears their problem was getting involved with Hamas. Maybe that was because one of their founders was directly involved in Hamas but Hamas was declared a terrorist organization as far back as the mid 1990s.

              I have no sympathy for them and doubt they were only a "feed the children" fund from the little I have been able to find about them in the last 20 minutes.

              • If they truly committed those crimes, then why did they have to MAKE UP EVIDENCE to convict them? People following the truth don't need to lie to bring justice.
                • What evidence did they have to make up? Seriously, I only did a cursory search on them and don't really care about their cause or situation. If you have something to say, you should say it with that in mind as I don't know what you think you know and I do not know what you think you know is true or false. From all the available sources I could find in a short search, they went to supporting Hamas and the guy in question to this day says he will still smuggle weapons into the west bank for Hamas. That is his

              • by nbauman ( 624611 )

                The question was whether the zakat committees were controlled by Hamas. The Holy Land Foundation was supporting the same zakat committees that were also supported by the USAID. Even the U.S. Embassy in Israel had no information that the zakat committees were controlled by Hamas. It's quite a stretch to say that by supporting committees that provide food, shelter, clothing and medical care is "material support" of terrorism. The first jury didn't accept it.

                Why doesn't the justice department go after Sheldon

          • by AK Marc ( 707885 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @04:12PM (#49411089)

            That degree depends a lot on what you know when doing so. It has to do with the "mens rea" or state of mind. For instance, donations to a "feed the children" charity or a legal defense fund for someone when used to render such aid would likely not show intent and couldn't be prosecuted outside of who misused the funding.

            You don't know what mens rea means, so you should stop describing it wrongly to people. The act must have been deliberate (conscious). Not the intent, but the act. So giving $1 to "save the children" thinking it was UNICEF and having it be an IRA front is a crime that meets all the requirements of mens rea. You intended to do the act that someone else later thought illegal.

            You needn't have any intent to break the law (ignorance of the law is no defense), nor do you need to have any intent to have the outcome. You must only have intended the precipitating event.

            Example: you are cleaning a gun, and you accidentally snag the cleaning cloth on the trigger and the gun discharges, killing someone, there is no mens rea, because you didn't intend to pull the trigger. If you are cleaning the gun, and you want to clean the hammer, so you cock it, then later attempt to dry fire it, but there was one in the chamber, you meet the mens rea requirement because you intended to pull the trigger. That you didn't intend to fire a bullet, or strike a person with it is irrelevant. You intended the action that lead to an illegal result.

            That may not be the Latin definition, nor the original or non-US definition, but in the US currently, mens rea is tied solely to the intent to commit an action, not any intent to commit a crime, nor any act after the last conscious one. It's a low standard, and the way it's applied now, is useless, aside from being the basis for insanity pleas, though those are rare, as they last longer than the penalty for the crime, and are generally served in worse conditions, unless the rare "temporary" condition can be argued. But that happens more in TV shows than real life.

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        Which of course in reality is even more perverse. Consider if you catch a US spy, spying on your country, according to the most perverse imaginable US policy, they claim the right to take sanctions out against you if you report that criminal activity with the intent to disrupt that espionage activity to your own government. So by sanctions do they mean 'Eiger Sanction' https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com], hmm, a violation of the law to enforce the law ie screw your laws only ours count.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I wouldn't worry too much; giving away money is now a first amendment right as an expression of free speech. If there ever was a positive side to Citizen's United, this is it.

  • What the fuck? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:15AM (#49408199)

    a recent executive order from President Obama "said to have made it illegal to donate to Edward Snowden's fund,"

    What in the actual fuck? It is now illegal to donate to fund someone that has not been convinced of anything, and who has done great justice exposing criminal things our government has been up to? And yet it's totally fine to donate under the table to politicians (ie, bribe) for "favors"?

    When will it end? What the fuck happened to having a free society?

    • Even worse. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Okian Warrior ( 537106 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:27AM (#49408237) Homepage Journal

      What in the actual fuck? It is now illegal to donate to fund someone that has not been convinced of anything, and who has done great justice exposing criminal things our government has been up to?

      It's much worse than that.

      The president, by himself, created and enacted a law which carries a criminal penalty.

      (My outrage meter is pretty much pegged, and I had a polemic about secret laws, secret courts, ordering US citizens killed, and such... but I think that one statement above stands by itself. The US is well and truly fucked.)

      • Re:Even worse. (Score:5, Informative)

        by snowgirl ( 978879 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:42AM (#49408291) Journal

        Actual Executive Order [whitehouse.gov]

        Nothing there says criminal penalties.

        Also, it says that the actors must be outside of the United States. Remind me again, but Snowden did all of his stuff inside of the United States, right?

        As usual, non-lawyers read something think it means something that makes them upset, and it spreads and no one actually sits down to read the actual law.

        • That's an interesting read. While nothing in the order says criminal penalties it mentions the laws which apparently let one person rule by diktat so I expect that they specify the penalties.

          The part I thought interesting though was that any of these funds which come under the control of an "American person" are included. I'm guessing that this means Americans with jobs in the financial sector abroad are going to have a hard time: if they follow this law then they may find themselves breaking local laws,
          • The USA, following its revolution, implemented a system that was relatively novel at the time, and had not been tried on anywhere near that scale, at least in recent memory. Its leaders at the time were aware of the failings of the past (in their view), and tried to build a system that would counteract/prevent similar abuses.

            We're now 240 some years later. While the USA's system has not, pretty much every other country that modeled its system on the US collapsed in one way or another. Its structure tends to
          • That's an interesting read. While nothing in the order says criminal penalties it mentions the laws which apparently let one person rule by diktat so I expect that they specify the penalties.

            Isn't that the entire point of emergency powers? The order specifically says "national emergency."

            Anyways, let's look at the laws that are cited:
            Termination of existing declared emergencies: 50 U.S.C. 1601 [cornell.edu]
            Unusual and extraordinary threat; declaration of national emergency; exercise of Presidential authorities: 50 U.S.C. 1701 [cornell.edu]
            General authorization to delegate functions: Section 301 of Title 3 [cornell.edu]
            Inadmissible aliens: 8 U.S.C. 1182(f) [cornell.edu]

            Presidential authorities: 50 U.S.C. 1702(b)(2) [cornell.edu]
            Banning entry to aliens covered by t

        • Actual Executive Order [whitehouse.gov]

          Nothing there says criminal penalties.

          there wont be any criminal penalty, just itty bitty cia handled rendition or a drone strike

        • Read the law? Are you crazy? Without that we can't have "blah, blah, blah... Obama is Hitler, blah, blah, blah". You might think ObamaHitler propaganda is bad, but we need it. It has electrolytes. It's what plants crave. If you pull the plug on ObamaHitle propaganda, a good chunk of the economy could collapse.

      • Re:Even worse. (Score:4, Interesting)

        by thisisauniqueid ( 825395 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @04:28AM (#49408641)

        It's much worse than that. The president, by himself, created and enacted a law which carries a criminal penalty.

        I agree that is bad. I don't know if the alternative is worse though: Congress has effectively become completely useless, because no bill on any issue can ever get pushed through Congress these days without major blockades from the non-sponsoring side, and (usually last thing on a Friday afternoon) without large amounts of unrelated legislation (riders [wikipedia.org]) being stuffed into the bill after hundreds of pages of fluff so the riders won't actually be read by anybody before they're signed into law.

  • So... Release information that will incriminate Uncle Sam in support of U.S. foundational principle and law of the land is taboo. They'll still attack out of spite and to starve you. Still they say freedom in the U.S. is a big seller and better than any place else in the world. Gotta call BULLSHIT on that one. I'm thinking the powers that be are bent on Hitler's ways, and in a both feet sort of way. Germany has all that shit behind them, I'm thinking that one of the two is perceptive enough to learn, an

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by MobSwatter ( 2884921 )

      Yeah, mod me ZERO, fine. But I don't see a big stink made out of the F35 plans making it into the hands of China. Instead I see a bigger stink made out of someone trying to support the supreme law of the land. The very one that made the U.S. what, well what it was and certainly not what it is now.

    • by dbIII ( 701233 )
      Unless you are releasing classified information not out of a sense of duty but because you want to fuck a hot journalist - the General rule is that's OK.
  • For this to be true, there must be some law passed by Congress making the donation illegal, presumably when the recipient is a member of some group as determined by the executive branch. Anyone have the details?

    The courts would never fall for this, but if there isn't a very good justification for the law, Citizen's United ought to apply...
    • by BlueStrat ( 756137 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:41AM (#49408287)

      For this to be true, there must be some law passed by Congress making the donation illegal, presumably when the recipient is a member of some group as determined by the executive branch.

      How 1980's!

      There is only one branch of government, the Executive, then there are the minor agencies and departments like the Congressional Dept. and Legislative agency, all closely overseen by the Executive branches' all-seeing intelligence and monitoring apparatus.

      Any who buck the status quo are destroyed.

      But hey, there's rumored to be a new Marvel Comic-based movie in the works!

      Strat

    • by radarskiy ( 2874255 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @03:44AM (#49408563)

      The Executive Order cites the laws that are claimed to authorize the order in the first paragraph, to wit "including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) (NEA), section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (8 U.S.C. 1182(f)), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code".

      • by rossz ( 67331 )

        He can cite them all he wants. They don't apply. There is no emergency. Fuck Obama.

        • by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @05:06AM (#49408719)

          The US has been in a perpetual state of emergency since 9/11. Every time things look like they are settling down, some new crisis is presented to prolong the panic a bit longer.

          • by bgarcia ( 33222 )
            The perpetual state of emergency extends back even further, to Jimmy Carter in 1979. At this point, it's just a tool for the executive branch to hang on to the additional powers granted by the 1976 bill.
        • by HiThere ( 15173 )

          IIRC the US has officially been in a state of emergency ever since WWII. It was declared during the war and was never recinded. (I think it's also been redeclared a few times since then, but, again IIRC, the WWII declaration came with the approval of Congress, the others have just been presidential declarations, and didn't actually change the legal standing...though they did announce how the government intended to act.)

  • by snowgirl ( 978879 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:29AM (#49408245) Journal

    No link? [citation needed]

  • Ed is welcome (Score:4, Insightful)

    by AndyCanfield ( 700565 ) <andycanfield&yandex,com> on Sunday April 05, 2015 @01:41AM (#49408283) Homepage

    Ed Snowden is my hero. He can sleep on my floor anytime.

    - Andy Canfield (Thailand)
    www.andycanfield.com

    • Agreed. I'm not real sure that I have any heroes, but yeah, Ed is probably as good as they get. Heh - I'm amused by the AC posts to your comment . . .

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) *

      Dude, you could at least offer him the sofa...

      • Don't have a sofa. Have several bedrooms, some with mattresses, some with people, many pillows. blankets, towells, hot water, electricity, Intrenet wifi. No air condiioning. Motorcycle, no car.I live like a Thai farmer.
    • Oh, and actually, I don't much care what your twit president says and does. I live on the other side of the planet, about as far away from Washington D.C. as one can get (12 hours before EST). But it's nice that you finally have a black president; maybe a women next time?
  • because you can't plead the 1st.

  • FTEO (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @02:30AM (#49408409) Homepage Journal

    Fuck the executive order. This president has pushed the boundaries with his executive orders. He usurps the authority of congress with many of them, including his immigration/amnesty orders.

    The President of the United States has ZERO authority to tell people how they can spend their money.

    This is the same mouthy prick who told stay at home moms that he had no use for them. He doesn't WANT mothers caring for their children, or for their aging parents/grandparents. He wants them in the work force, so that they are paying SOMEONE ELSE to care for those children.

    I kinda voted for Obama, in that I voted against Romney. But, Obama is as big a prick as any president has been. Liberal love him, but that doesn't make him a good president.

    • I'm waiting to hear if this is truly as described.

      I cannot believe anyone can make a law (in the US) that denies the ability of people to donate to the cause of their choice. especially a defense fund.

      then again, if snowden is declared 'an enemy' I guess even assholes like our president can get away with murder. and yes, murder is what he's pretty much shooting for, one way or another, with snowden.

      one thing amuses me and I enjoy it quite a lot: the fact that our executive is so pissed off and annoyed, al

      • I cannot believe anyone can make a law (in the US) that denies the ability of people to donate to the cause of their choice. ....

        Supreme Court upholds ban on 'material support' to foreign terrorist groups [washingtonpost.com]

        The First Amendment does not protect humanitarian groups or others who advise foreign terrorist organizations, even if the support is aimed at legal activities or peaceful settlement of disputes, the Supreme Court ruled Monday.

        ---------------

        ... a defense fund.

        I'm not sure that Snowden needs a defense fund at the moment since he is a fugitive from justice. He doesn't seem to be involved in any US logal proceedings at present. Seems like this could be just a slush fund.

        snowden, you tweaked those in the highest levels of power in the world. for that, I say THANK YOU. I wish I could do more to help you - we all owe you so much.

        The funny thing is that al Qaida, China, Russia, and Iran could say the same thing.

        one thing amuses me and I enjoy it quite a lot: the fact that our executive is so pissed off and annoyed, along with all the other agencies - I rather LIKE THAT!

        In short you like to stick it to "The Man" even if it's "The Man" that keeps the suicide bombers out of your gay pride par

        • by HiThere ( 15173 )

          Excuse me, but what evidence do you have that
          """it's "The Man" that keeps the suicide bombers out of your gay pride parade or naked protest """
          It's barely possible that there have been averted incidents, but the reports I've seen generally are along the lines of "some low level operative attempted to report this threat in process, but was ignored". Now I can understand ignoring the actual signal because they are swamped with noise from irrelevant reports, but to me that suggests that they need a much bette

    • It's not for you to define the boundaries of Executive Orders. That's the jurisdiction of the legal system. If the Executive Order were not legal, it would not exist.

      You cite no evidence to the contrary.

      • Of the people, for the people, and by the people.

        Yes, it is for me to determine what is proper in government. Did you not have any high school civics classes, or even social studies? The people are the ultimate authority in this nation. Not only has government forgotten that, but the people have forgotten as well.

        Everything that the government does is my business, how it does it, when it does it, and why it does it. That is precisely why so many of us are pissed off at NSA spying on the people. We, the

        • You can SAY "Fuck the Executive Order," all day and yet it exists.

          You STILL don't get to define the boundaries, do you?

  • by Cacadril ( 866218 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @04:02AM (#49408601)
    To find out if this order applies to what you intend to do, you probably need to study the conditions specified in the order. Donations...

    "...to, or for the benefit of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to section 1 of this order..."

    are being prohibited. Now, how do I know whether Snowden is such a person whose property is blocked pursuant to said order? Is there a registry over such persons?

    • Another portion of the order, highlighted in the Reddit article:

      there need be no prior notice of a listing or determination made pursuant to section 1 of this order.

      But it could easily mean that no prior warning need to be given to Snowden himself before he is listed, not that nobody will have the means to find out who is listed at a given moment.

      • Another portion of the order, highlighted in the Reddit article:

        there need be no prior notice of a listing or determination made pursuant to section 1 of this order.

        But it could easily mean that no prior warning need to be given to Snowden himself before he is listed, not that nobody will have the means to find out who is listed at a given moment.

        You have to understand the sheer brilliance of it all. As long as everything is classified then everything is illegal. It is just an extension of the terrific unending over reach of the government in all matters criminal.

        The first rule of donation club is you cannot donate to section 1.
        The second rule of donation club is YOU CANNOT DONATE TO SECTION 1.
        The third rule of donation club is you cannot know what is defined by section 1.

  • by randalware ( 720317 ) on Sunday April 05, 2015 @07:05AM (#49409003) Journal

    contributing to a crook running for political office is legal !

    if an executive order against that happens, we will get the political reform we need !

  • "A new executive order signed into law" What? Does the article author not have a clue that this isn't how executive orders work?
    • Welcome to the brave new world. Orientations are being held tonight in cell block B19 followed by a social mixer in the exercise yard. Hope to see you there.

    • "A new executive order signed into law"

      What? Does the article author not have a clue that this isn't how executive orders work?

      The same way Roman imperial decrees worked, apparently...

  • "evading US justice"? I don't think so.
    • "evading US justice"? I don't think so.

      He really meant "evading just ice", which is a good idea, if you have sensitive teeth.

  • ...specifically:

    1. Money is Speech (ever heard of the "Citizen's United" decision?)
    2. Sending money to (putative) criminals under this Executive Order is illegal.
    3. Logical conclusion: The Executive Order section asserting this prohibition is unlawful.

    That's not to say our corrupt government, hell-bent on benefiting the 1% and limiting freedoms for or benefits to the 99%, hasn't asserted that intentionally in order to start the long road to gutting the First Amendment.

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